DnD Wizard Handbook


Wizards are the masters of spellcasting, relying almost entirely on their spells to succeed. They have the best area damage spells, many of the best crowd control spells, and have access to most of the ritual spells in the game, making them fantastic both in combat and as a utility caster. However, because they’re so reliant on spell slots, the wizard can also present resource limitations and require frequent long rests when your spell slots run dry unless you get good at stretching your spell slots for an extended period.

Due to the Wizard’s dependence on long rests, they frequently do well in parties of other characters which also depend on long rests to recharge or don’t have rechargeable features at all. Barbarians, rangers, rogues, and other full casters (bard, cleric, druid, sorcerer) all do well alongside a wizard. Classes which depend more on short rests (monk, warlock) may have more trouble managing resources.

Lacking any proficiency in armor or shields, wizards can also be incredibly frail (Abjuration School is a notable exception). Be sure to cast Mage Armor to boost your AC, and keep a safe distance between yourself and your enemies, ideally with the rest of your party in between. Spells don’t suffer Disadvantage for attacking at long range like weapons do, so you’re just as effective at your maximum range as you would be anywhere else.

After reading this handbook, we strongly recommend our Wizard Spells Breakdown.

Table of Contents


RPGBOT uses a color coding scheme to rate individual character options.

  • Red: Bad, useless options, or options which are extremely situational. Nearly never useful.
  • Orange: OK options, or useful options that only apply in rare circumstances. Useful sometimes.
  • Green: Good options. Useful often.
  • Blue: Fantastic options, often essential to the function of your character. Useful very frequently.

RPGBOT is fan content published under Larian’s Fan Content Policy. This is not official content, and RPGBOT has no official relationship with Larian.

Wizard Class Features

Hit Points: The lowest hp in the game, and with no armor you’re very vulnerable.

Saves: Intelligence saves basically don’t exist in Baldur’s Gate 3, but Wisdom saves are common and typically involved big debuffs like Hold Person.

Armor Proficiencies: No armor.

Weapon Proficiencies: Daggers and crossbows are the best things that you can actually use as a weapon, but beyond low levels you’ll spend a lot of time carrying a staff and forgetting that you have a crossbow.


The Wizard’s spellcasting is so good that they get almost no other class features. Wizards have a massive spell list which does basically everything that you can do with magic except healing. Wizards have many of the best offensive spells, buff spells, area control spells, crowd control spells, and utility spells. They get access to most of the game’s ritual spells, too, which allows them to solve many problems outside of combat without spending spell slots.

Be sure to hoard scrolls to add to your spellbook. I really can’t overstate how important and useful it is to collect scrolls. The ablity to learn spells by spending a bit of gold and a scroll means that you effectively have the entire wizard spell list available (or as close as you can get with whatever scrolls you can find). You can then swap your prepared spells to suit your needs at any given moment.

Even once you know a spell, scrolls can also provide easy access to spells that you don’t have prepared and complement your limited number of spell slots. Merchants that sell scrolls typically restock

This even applies to cantrips, which is a major deviation form the tabletop rules. You can learn additional cantrips from scrolls, giving you the ability to have every wizard cantrip available.

Arcane Recovery

Once per day out of combat, you can replenish expended Spell Slots.

The description is wildly unhelpful, so here’s how it actually works: You gain a number of charges equal to half of your wizard level (rounded down). At any time outside of combat, you can recover a spell slot by spending a number of charges equal to the level of the spell slot (1 charge for a 1st-level spell, 2 charges for a 2nd-level spell, etc.). You can do this whenever you like throughout the day until you expend all of your charges, which then reset when you take a long rest.

Arcane recovery is great for recovering 1st-level slots that you’ve used for Shield, but you can also use it to recover one sepll slot of your highest spell level by spending all of your charges. Unlike the tabletop rules, you can use this at any time outside of combat and you can restore spell slots throughout the day until you run out of charges, rather than only doing so once when you complete a Short Rest.

Wizard Subclasses

Abjuration School

Durability, plain and simple. Arcane Ward’s math makes it among the best defenses in the game, mitigating insane quantities of damage at little cost (potentially no cost if you multiclass). The ward’s protection is enough that you may be more durable than front-line characters like barbarians and fighters, and sharing its protection with allies means that your entire party is hard to kill.

Unlike many wizard subclasses, Abjuration School rewards sticking to single-class wizard because the Ward’s maximum Intensity is determined by your wizard level.

2: Abjuration Savant

Halves the cost to learn Abjuration spells from scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Arcane Ward

The residual magic of your spells forms a ward around you that protects you from harm. Each time you cast an Abjuration spell, the intensity of the ward increases by the amount of the spell’s Level, up to a maximum of 2x your Wizard level. Each time you take damage, the ward blocks an amount of damage equal to its intensity, and its intensity decreases by 1. After each Long Rest, the ward’s intensity resets, and becomes the same as your Wizard level.

The exponential growth of the Arcane Ward makes it an absurdly powerful defense. Say that your ward was currently at Intensity 10. If you were to then take damage, that damage would be reduced by 10, then the intensity would be reduced to 9, which is barely a difference.

In the tabletop rules you can multiclass into Warlock to get the Armor of Shadows invocation, which allows you to cast Mage Armor without spending a spell slot in order to fully charge the ward for free. However, in Baldur’s Gate 3 Mage Armor can’t target a creature that already has Mage Armor running, so that exploit doesn’t work.

6: Projected Ward

As a reaction, when a nearby ally takes damage you can sacrifice your Arcane Ward to reduce the damage they take, and its intensity reduces by 1.

All the wonderful shenanigans of Arcane Ward, and now you get to share it once per round.

10: Improved Abjuration

Each time you take a Short Rest the intensity of your Arcane Ward increases by an amount equal to your Wizard level.

Taking a long rest resets your ward to intensity equal to your level. One short rest then increases it by your level. You could take a long rest then immediately take a long rest and have a full ward, but that would be a bit silly since you only get two per day (three with a bard). If you’re using a Warlock dip to fill your ward, this doesn’t matter much. If you’re not, this is amazing.

Conjuration School

Conjuration School has nothing to do with summoning creatures, which has been a source of confusion and frustration for DnD players for years. The features individually are okay, but they don’t provide any features that you couldn’t replicate already.

2: Conjuration Savant

Halves the cost to learn Conjuration spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Minor Conjuration: Create Water

Gain the ability to cast the  Create Water spell without consuming a spell slot, once per Short Rest.

The ability to make enemies Wet and to extinguish fires for free is surprisingly useful. However, it also requires that your allies have a way to deal cold or electricity damage to capitalize on you spending your Action to do so. You can also replace this by throwing a bottle of water, which anyone in your party can do, including a Mage Hand.

6: Benign Transposition

Gain the ability to teleport yourself to an unoccupied space or swap with an ally (of size Medium or Small) within 9m / 30ft. Once used, this action cannot be reused until after a Long Rest or casting a Conjuration Spell of Level 1 or higher.

Inexpensive teleportation. Not always useful, and most of the time it can be replaced by Misty Step, but it’s still helpful.

10: Focused Conjuration

Damage taken while you are Concentrating on a Conjuration spell will not break your concentration.

Conceptually exciting, but there are very few spells where this matters. Cloud of Daggers and Web are the only examples I can find at a glance. Summon spells don’t require Concentration.

Divination School

You’re here for Portent. Baldur’s Gate 3 doesn’t have many divination spells, unfortunately.

If you’re taking a level dip into wizard for the spellcasting, this is a great choice on any class.

2: Divination Savant

Halves the cost to learn Divination spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Portent

Your dreams grant you glimpses that let you influence the future. After each Long Rest you gain two random Portent Dice. During the day, you can use your reaction to change the die of any Attack Roll or Saving Throw rolled within Range: 18 m / 60 ft of you to one of your Portent Dice. Each Portent Die can only be used once, and you lose your unused Portent Dice at the end of the day.

If you roll low, use it to replace enemies’ saving throws. If you roll high, use it for your party’s saving throws. If you roll a 20, use it for an attack roll.

6: Expert Divination

You may gain an additional Portent Die: when taking a Short Rest you receive a Prophecy. Complete it to regain a missing Portent Die.

A third portent die, and recharging one on a Short Rest helps to stretch your best feature through the day.

10: Third Eye

Once per long rest, use an action to gain the ability to see in the dark out to 18m / 60ft akin to Superior Darkvision.

Both of these can be replaced by 2nd-level spells. Superior Darkvision is neat, but basically never matters.

Enchantment School

Generally all about save-or-suck spells.

2: Enchantment Savant

Halves the cost to learn Enchantment spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Hypnotic Gaze

Once per Long Rest, use an action to target a non-ally creature within 1.5m / 5ft. The target must succeed on a  Wisdom Saving Throw or become charmed and incapacitated for 2 turns. As an action, while still within range, you can maintain the charm, extending the charm for another 2 turns. If the target takes damage, the effect ends.

An off switch for bosses, but it only works once per day and you need to spend your Action to keep it going. Still, if you’re successful, you can lock down an enemy for as long as you need until your party is ready to engage them. It’s melee range, so this is a high risk, high reward feature, and since it only works once per long rest you can’t retry.

Outside of combat, Hypnotic Gaze can be used in some social situations to gain Advantage on Charisma checks similarly to the Friendss cantrip, but without the risk of angering an NPC.

6: Instinctive Charm

As a Reaction, charm an enemy that attacks you. They must succeed on a  Wisdom saving throw or attack a new target if possible. If a target succeeds on its saving throw, it cannot be affected by this ability until after a long rest.

As a wizard, you’re squishy. Your allies are likely less squishy. Just be sure that if you’re in melee, you have an ally get it into your attacker’s reach.

10: Split Enchantment

You know your enchantments inside and out. You can target 2 creatures with Enchantment spells that would normally only target 1 creature.

Double the effectiveness of some of the best save-or-suck spells in the game. At this level you have Dominate Person and Hold Monster, and in one level you’ll get Otto’s Irresistible Dance.

Evocation School

The blunt hammer of wizardry, Evocation is simple to play, reliable, and accessible. For players new to DnD or who are intimidated by running a party of four, Evocation is a great choice. Even if you’re an experienced player, the simple utility of being able to blow stuff up without killing your party is wonderful in a game where nearly every encounter involves multiple enemies running around.

2: Evocation Savant

Halves the cost to learn Evocation spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Sculpt Spells

Create pockets of safety within your Evocation spells. Allies automatically succeed their Saving Throws and take no damage from these spells.

The ability to drop area damage spells on your friends safely is massively useful.

6: Potent Cantrip

Your Cantrips become harder to evade entirely. When a creature succeeds its Saving Throw against one of your cantrips, it still takes half the cantrip’s damage, but suffers no additional effects.

Works with Acid Splash and Poison Spray, neither of which are evocation cantrips.

10: Empowered Evocation

Your grasp of Evocation magic has tightened, and you can add your  Intelligence Modifier to damage rolls with any Evocation spells.

A huge damage boost to your most damaging spells. This adds to all of the damage rolls of your evocation spells, which means that spells with multiple damage rolls like Magic Missile or Scorching Rays apply the damage bonus to each of them, turning those low-level spells into terrifying ways to quickly eliminate single enemies, especially if you upcast them. It also adds to area damage spells, but adding 5 damage to Fireball doesn’t feel especially impressive when your highest-level fireballs are doing something like 40 damage on average.

Illusion School

Baldur’s Gate 3 has very few illusion spells, and Illusion School does little to improve them.

2: Illusion Savant

Halves the cost to learn Illusion spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Improved Minor Illusion

You can cast  Minor Illusion as a Bonus Action. You can remain hidden while casting this spell. This spell can be cast while you are Silenced.

Wonderful for breaking lines of sight by forcing enemies to turn, which can be helpful if you have a rogue in the party who is struggling to hide.

6: See Invisibility

Once per Short Rest, as an Action, you can cast the spell  See Invisibility without consuming a Spell Slot.

Only situationally useful, and you can replace it with a spell that lasts until your next long rest. You can also get consumables and permanent items which let you see invisibility.

10: Illusory Self

As a Reaction, you magically fashion an illusory duplicate of yourself when attacked, causing the attack to miss. After use, this ability cannot be used until after a short rest.

Negate one attack against you per short rest.

Necromancy School

Necromancy doesn’t take off until you get Undead Thralls, but then it suddenly gets awesome. You’ll have 3 3rd-level spell slots at level 6, and given enough corpses you can turn that into 6 pet skeleton archers, each of which deals 1d8+1d6+6 damage per attack. If the rest of your party can keep enemies away from your skeletons, you have damage output handled.

Necromancy Savant

Halves the cost to learn Necromancy spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

2: Grim Harvest

Once per turn, if you kill a creature with a spell, you regain Hit Points equal to twice the Spell Slot level used – thrice if it’s a Necromancy spell. Undead and Constructs are unaffected.

A passable way to restore hit points, but it requires that you get the killing blow to trigger the healing, which can be difficult to time, especially since necromancy spells aren’t a great source of damage for the Wizard.

6: Undead Thralls

You gain the Animate Dead spell, if you didn’t have it already. When you use Animate Dead, you can raise an additional corpse. Creatures created with Animate Dead have additional hit points equal to your Wizard level, and your Proficiency Bonus is added to their damage.

Significantly improve the effectiveness of Animate Dead. Upcast Animate Dead using your highest-level spell slot to get as many undead as possible to maximize the benefits here. Have your party drag some dead bodies around whenever you find them so that you have enough corpses to turn into undead minions.

This won’t solve the issue of NPCs getting angry about you bringing undead around in civilized places, unfortunately, although a very popular mod can.

10: Inured to Undeath

You have steeped youself so completely in death that you are Resistant to Necrotic damage, and your hit point maximum cannot be reduced.

Only situationally useful, but also very difficult to replicate.

Transmutation School

The ideal camp caster, but abysmally boring to actually play.

Transmutation Savant

Halves the cost to learn Transmutation spells from Scrolls. Learning these spells will only cost  25 gp per spell level.

Standard, and not especially important. In a game where pickpocketing merchants is comically easy, small amounts of gold aren’t a meaningful cost.

Experimental Alchemy

You brew two Alchemical Solutions instead of one when combining extracts, if you succeed a Difficulty Class 15 Medicine Check.

Tempting if you like to craft items, but this requires you to make a Medicine check (Medicine is largely useless), and ingredients to make alchemical items are dirt cheap and available from nearly every trader. Still, there are some rare ingredients which produce extremely powerful consumables, and doubling how many you get is very tempting.

6: Transmuter’s Stone

You can create Transmuter’s Stones, storing some of your transmutation magic. A creature carrying the stone gains a benefit of your choice

Absolutely amazing. Proficiency in Constitution saves is most of a feat, and either that or damage resistance are a wonderful addition to any party.

10: Shapechanger

Transform into a blue jay, able to Fly. If the blue jay’s Hit Points drop to 0, the target reverts to its original form with its original hit points.

You can cast Fly and druids have been turning into birds since level 4.

Wizard Ability Scores

Wizards are all about Intelligence, then use Dexterity, Constitution, and Wisdom to support defenses and skills.

The lack of a feat which provides a +1 increase to Intelligence may make it unhelpful to start with 17 Intelligence. You could instead take 16 and spend two feats to raise it to 20, but you might also find items that permanently increase it by 1, which would save you a feat.

Str: Literally only useful for jumping and Shove. You can cast Leap or Fly for jumping, and you can use Mage Hand to Shove.

Dex: Ranged weapon attacks, AC, Dexterity saves, and some skills. With no armor, this is a big part of your durability. Starting with 16 is entirely achievable, and makes using a crossbow reasonably effective at low levels.

Con: Hit points, Concentration, Constitution saves.

Int: Your spellcasting.

Wis: Wisdom saves and Perception checks are both common.

Cha: Only useful for skills that you don’t necessarily need to use.

Game Recommended+2/+1FinalRPGBOT Recommended+2/+1Final

Wizard Races

Depending on what you’re planning to do as your wizard, look for defensive options, innate spells, and possibly extra skill proficiencies.


Slow, and both Darkvision and Poison Resilience are replaceable with 2nd-level spells. The weapon proficiencies are useless for wizards.

  • Gold: More HP is great on a class that gets the lowest hp in the game.
  • Shield: Medium armor is excellent, but the Githyanki is a much better way to get it.
  • Duergar: Advantage on some saves is nice, and the innate spellcasting is decent.


Permanent damage resistance is nice, but the breath weapon feels silly compared to the Wizard’s spellcasting.


Proficiency in hand crossbows is easy to overlook for players familiar with the tabletop rules, but in Baldur’s Gate 3 you can use hand crossbows with two-weapon fighting and you don’t need to take the Attack action to make the Bonus Action attack. This means that if you can find two hand crossbows (often hard at low levels) you can use any spare bonus action to attack.

Darkvision can be replaced by a spell, but Fey Ancestry and proficiency in Perception are both good.

Lolth-sworn Drow and Seldarine Drow are mechanically identical, but get access to different dialog choices.


The weapon proficiencies aren’t especially helpful, and Darkvision can be replaced by a spell. Fey Ancestry and proficiency in Perception are both good.

  • High Elf: You can learn cantrips from scrolls.
  • Wood Elf: Additional speed and yet another skill proficiency.


Gnome Cunning is an amazing defense, but wizards are already proficient in Intelligence and Wisdom saves, so you may not feel that you need more protection there.

  • Rock: Adding twice your proficiency to History checks is nice, but it doesn’t come up very often.
  • Forest: Speak with Animals is amazing in Baldur’s Gate 3, and you only need to cast it once a day anyway. It’s not on the Wizard’s spell list, but it’s also available from abundant and inexpensive consumables.
  • Deep: Advantage on Stealth is great if you spend a lot of time sneaking.


Astral Knowledge is proficiency in as many as 4 skills, and since you can change it every Long Rest you can often rest before high-stakes social situations to swap to Charisma. Githyanki Psionics is a great set of innate spells. Martial prodigy gets you medium armor, which is a significant improvement to your durability and allows you to use many excellent boots, gloves, and helmets that require proficiency in medium armor.


Half-elves get the same Civil Militia feature that humans do, but instead of a skill proficiency you get Darkvision (which is replaceable with a spell), Fey Ancestry, and a subrace.

  • High Half-Elf: An extra cantrip is very tempting, but you can learn cantrips from scrolls.
  • Wood Half-Elf: Better speed and proficiency in stealth. More speed is very helpful in Baldur’s Gate 3 because the game makes positioning so important.
  • Drow Half-Elf: Decent innate spellcasting.


You don’t need Darkvision, you don’t need Intimidation, and Savage Attacks won’t help you.


Baldur’s Gate 3 makes a natural 1 a critical failure, meaning that you automatically fail whatever attack/check/save. This makes Halfling Luck extremely useful. Brave is also nice.

  • Lightfoot: Advantage on Stealth is great if you spend a lot of time sneaking.
  • Strongheart: Poison Resistance is available as a 2nd-level spell which lasts until your next long rest, so getting it from your race is pointless beyond low levels.


One skill, proficiency in light armor, and proficiency in shields. Light armor won’t compete with Mage Armor for a long time, and by then you’ll want to wear robes. You’re effectively here for one skill and shield proficiency.

The problem with humans isn’t that they’re bad: it’s that for whatever you want from the human, there is a better solution. Do you want skills? Wood Elf gets two, and Githyanki gets Astral Knowledge (which can be as many as 4). Do you want Better AC? Half-elf gets the same Civil Militia feature, or Githyanki and Shield Dwarves both get medium armor.


Resistance to fire is a great start. Fire damage is common. Unfortunately, none of the subraces are worthwhile.

  • Asmodeus Tiefling: You’re basically only here for Hellish Rebuke once per day, and that’s just not enough.
  • Mephistopheles Tiefling: You can learn Mage Hand from a scroll, so you’re basically just here for Burning Hands for free once per day.
  • Zariel Tiefling: For melee characters.

Wizard Skills

  • Acrobatics (Dex): Largely replaced by Feather Fall.
  • Animal Handling (Wis): Largely replaced by Speak with Animals or an equivalent potion.
  • Athletics (Str): Strength is a dump stat.
  • Arcana (Int): Frequently useful in conversations and for opening some puzzles.
  • Deception (Cha): Charisma is a dump stat, and if you’re going to take just one Charisma-based skill it needs to be Persuasion.
  • History (Int): Occasionally rolled automatically during conversations to give your character in-world knowledge.
  • Insight (Wis): Occasionally rolled during conversations.
  • Intimidation (Cha): Charisma is a dump stat, and if you’re going to take just one Charisma-based skill it needs to be Persuasion.
  • Investigation (Int): The ability scores line up, but there is almost never a chance to use this skill.
  • Medicine (Wis): Almost never matters.
  • Nature (Int): Occasionally rolled during conversations and while exploring.
  • Perception (Wis): Consistently useful.
  • Performance (Cha): Borderline useless.
  • Persuasion (Cha): If you’re going to have a Charisma-based skill, it needs to be Persuasion.
  • Religion (Int): Occasionally rolled during conversations and while exploring.
  • Sleight of Hand (Dex): Open locks, disarm traps, pick pockets. Wizards can easily have enough Dexterity to make this work.
  • Stealth (Dex): Wizards can easily have enough Dexterity to make this work, and even with Invisibility on the table, Stealth is still very helpful.
  • Survival (Wis): The buried chests are not worth the skill proficiency to find them.

Wizard Backgrounds

Backgrounds provide two skill proficiencies and determine the way that your character earns Inspiration. The game has ample opportunities to earn Inspiration for every background, so choosing a background typically comes down to what skills you want.

  • Acolyte: Sage is a better fit, but Insight isn’t awful on a wizard.
  • Charlatan: If you want rogue-style skills, Urchin is a better fit.
  • Criminal: If you want rogue-style skills, Urchin is a better fit.
  • Entertainer: Acrobatics can be mostly replaced by Feather Fall. Performance is borderline useless.
  • Folk Hero: Animal Handling can be handled magically, and Survival is only useful for finding disappointing chests.
  • Guild Artisan: Great skills for a Face character. If you’re dead set on doing social scenes with your wizard, this is a good choice, but it doesn’t work well with the Wizard’s ability scores.
  • Haunted One (Dark Urge only): If you’re playing Dark Urge, you’re locked into this. You get Medicine and Intimidation, and neither of those are great for the Wizard.
  • Noble: History is great. Persuasion is a difficult choice, but if you want to do social scenes as your wizard, Persuasion is the best skill for it.
  • Outlander: Athletics is a bad choice for the Wizard, and Survival is only useful for finding hidden chests scattered across the map that inevitably have disappointing treasure, plus some crafting ingredients in the underdark which you can just buy/pickpocket instead.
  • Sage: Two Intelligence-based skills.
  • Soldier: Strength and Charisma are both dump stats for the Wizard, so these skills will be a difficult fit for most wizards.
  • Urchin: It’s entirely possible to have 16 Dexterity as a level 1 wizard, which is plenty to make these skills work.

Wizard Feats

This section does not address every feat, as some clearly aren’t relevant to the class. For more general discussion on feats, see our Practical Guide to Feat Selection.

  • Alert: Going first is great for spellcasters. Get summoned creatures, area effect spells, and crowd control spells up and running before enemies can respond. Of course, since initiative is rolled on a d4, having passable Dexterity is often sufficient.
  • Dual Wielder: Use two magic staves. At high levels you’ll find enough of them that choosing just one is hard, and this is the only way to use two.
  • Elemental Adept: Wizards are among the best blaster casters in the game, and Baldur’s Gate 3 is set up to make elemental damage both fun and effective. Ignoring resistance to your favorite damage type and removing the possibility of rolling 1s is a significant boost.
  • Lucky: Good on every character.
  • Resilient: Resilient (Constitution) dramatically improves your ability to maintain Concentration, as well as protects you from a common saving throw type.
  • Spell Sniper: Wizards don’t depend on spell attacks enough to justify this, and the few attacks which they do use can be buffed by other mechanisms like high ground or having a crow familiar blind your target..
  • War Caster: Advantage on Concentration is great, but mathematically it’s about as good as a +3, so Resilient (Constitution) will be just as effective at level 5 with the added benefit of affecting normal Constitution saves. Yes, you can use this to cast Shocking Grasp as an Opportunity Attack, but you should not be making opportunity attacks enough for that to matter.

Wizard Weapons

Wizards get very few weapon proficiencies, and they largely stop mattering beyond low levels.

  • Dagger: Until you find a magic staff, this is your go-to melee weapon. You really only need it for attacks of opportunity. Try to avoid using it as much as possible.
  • Light Crossbow: Starting with 16 Dexterity will mean that crossbows deal more damage than your single-target cantrips until they improve at level 5.
  • Quarterstaff: You don’t actually want it as a weapon, but you’ll acquire magic staves which also function as a quarterstaff, so you can bonk people from time to time.

Wizard Armor

Wizards are not proficient in armor, but the game includes many magic robes which will fill your armor slot. Your primary source of AC will be Mage Armor and your Dexterity score, but there are also numerous items that boost your AC. A few items, such as Bracers of Defense, only work while unarmored, and those items are a great fit for wizards, provided that you don’t have a monk (or possibly a barbarian) in the party who would also want them.

Wizard Multiclassing

The Wizard’s multiclassing is somewhat unique because wizards in Baldur’s Gate 3 can learn spells of any level for which they have spell slots. This makes multiclassing considerably less costly, as the only things you give up are feats, subclass features, and prepared spells. Other classes don’t advance their access to high-level spells if they multiclass.

  • Barbarian: You can’t cast spells while you rage.
  • Bard: No ability score overlap. Anything that you want from the Bard you likely already have from the Wizard or you can get it better somewhere else. The biggest appeal here is an additional skill proficiency, plus Expertise if you get to level 3, without giving up spell slot progression.
  • Cleric: A single level to get access to powerful 1st-level spells like Healing Word, plus some 1st-level domain features are very powerful.
  • Druid: Everything you want from the Druid is probably better coming from the Cleric since they get better armor options.
  • Fighter: Starting your build with 1 level of Fighter gets you heavy armor, shields, a Fighting Style (take Defense), and proficiency in Constitution saves to help you maintain Concentration on your spells. A second levels gets you Action Surge so that you can cast two big spells in a single turn.
  • Monk: Unarmored Defense works while in robes intended for wizards, but you likely won’t get any other benefit, and Mage Armor will likely be more impactful.
  • Paladin: Everything you would want here will be better coming from the Cleric or the Fighter.
  • Ranger: No ability overlap. You can get everything you want from the Ranger from the Druid and/or the Fighter.
  • Rogue: Cunning Action is tempting if you’re worried about getting stuck in melee and don’t want to spend spell slots on Misty Step. Three levels to get Fast Hands from the Thief subclass means that you can cast two Bonus Action spells in one turn, but there aren’t many of those, and unlike the tabletop rules, you don’t need to spend a Bonus Action to activate things like Flaming Sphere or summoned creatures.
  • Sorcerer: Starting tour build with a single level gets you proficiency in Constitution saves to help you maintain Concentration on your spells, plus you don’t give up any spell slot progression. Use your tiny amount of sorcerer spellcasting for spells like Shield which are great but don’t care about your spellcasting modifier.
  • Warlock: No ability overlap, but the Warlock has a few options which allow for some really abusable combos, such as taking Armor of Shadows to cast Mage Armor for free in order to charge Abjuration School’s Arcane Ward.

Wizard Example Build: Gale the Evoker

Gale the wizard looking sad and broody
Look at this poor, sad, magical man. Feed him a magic shoe and he might cast Fireball for you.

Apparently 12% of player deaths in the first weekend following Baldur’s Gate 3’s release were caused by friendly fire. Wizard, being the masters of area damage, are likely a culprit. So, naturally, the Evoker is a good choice to avoid fireballing your own party to death.

In this build, we’ll look at optimizing Gale, everyone’s favorite shoe-eating wizard. As one of the companion characters, you’re locked into both his race and his background, so we’re going to work with those build choices and try to build ourselves the best wizard we can. I’ll also recommend things that could be done better along the way.

Depending on your party and the magic items you find, it may make more sense to build around other options. There are many right answers here, but this serves as a good example.

Ability Scores

I swear, whoever decided the stats for the companions wrote them to annoy me personally. Three odd-numbered stats? Seriously?

When you can, talk to Withers, choose the “change my class” option, and rebuild Gale’s ability scores. This build will assume that you’re not going to do that, but you really should.

RPGBOT Recommended+2/+1FinalGale’s Defaults


Human. We get one extra skill, which Gale apparently puts into Persuasion. We also get proficiency in light armor and shields.


Sage. We get proficiency in Arcana and History, which will come up in the game from time to time.

Skill Proficiencies

Gale takes Insight and Investigation as class skills for a final list of Arcana, History, Insight, Investigation, and Persuasion.


At level 4 we take Elemental Adept. We can handle our Intelligence being slightly behind to still be able to get around fire resistance with our most important spells.

At levels 8 and 12 we take ability score increases.


LevelFeat(s) and FeaturesNotes and Tactics
Arcane Recovery
Cantrips Known
– Fire Bolt
– Mage Hand
– Ray of Frost
Spells Known
– Fog Cloud
– Grease
– Mage Armor
– Sleep
– Thunderwave
– Witch Bolt
At level 1, you’re a tiny squishy wizard with very few hit points and the world is big and scary and full of things that eat brains. Cast Mage Armor, then immediately use Arcane Recovery to get that spell slot back. Grab the first shield you find. That’s your new left arm until you find one that’s magic. 15+Dex AC is pretty good, even with Gale’s inexplicable +1 Dexterity modifier.

On a custom wizard with 16 Dexterity, you’re rocking 18 AC at level 1 with a random wooden board you found on the ground strapped to your arm.

The spell list here is also taken directly from Gale. It’s not what I would pick, but it’s good enough.

Offensively, your cantrips do most of the work. If positioning works in your favor, use Thunderwave to shove multiple enemies off of cliffs. Otherwise, use Sleep to eliminate as many low-hp enemies as possible. Enemies with 7 max hp often do comparable damage to enemies with 30, so thinning their numbers is huge.

Don’t forget that Mage Hand can shove enemies, can be attacked, and can even make attacks (albeit for one damage), and can throw objects sitting on the ground (like that bottle of water that you just dropped), making it a decently useful combat summon. One attack against your mage hand is one not made against you and your party, and you might even use your mage hand to shove some enemies into pits.

[Spoilers]: I used Witch Bolt against probably the most Witch Bolt-friendly enemy in the entire game: the boss at the end of the prologue. They stand still and attack someone that isn’t in your party, they don’t attack you no matter how annoying you are, and I managed to get Advantage on the initial attack. I stood there and reactivated Witch Bolt for like 5 turns and after repeatedly rolling low single-digit damage against an enemy with resistance, I threw up my hands, declared Witch Bolt a lost cause, and crashed a space ship in disgust.
2Subclass: Evocation School
Evocation Savant
Sculpt Spells
New Spells Known:
– Chromatic Orb
– Find Familiar
Sculpt Spells is among the most important features that an evoker can have. Most area damage spells will affect your allies, and it’s otherwise a really steep cost to drop a fireball on a party member just so that you can hit one more goblin.

Chromatic Orb is a great spell in Baldur’s Gate 3, and it remains a good damage option for a long time. Try to get high ground if you can.

Find Familiar is amazing and has the added benefit of being a Ritual that you can cast without a spell slot once per Short Rest. I recommend the crow as your go-to option. Blinding a target temporarily means that your whole party can attack them with Advantage until the target’s turn begins.

[Spoilers]: This is likely the level you’ll be when you first meet Gale. If not, you’ll be painfully close.

[Spoilers]: When illithid flayer powers become an option, Favourable Beginnings and Luck of the Far Realms combine very well with Chromatic Orb. Against a Wet target, you can hit reliably and deal 4 times Chromatic Orb’s normal damage with cold or electricity damage.
3New Spells Known:
– Flaming Sphere
– Shatter
Shatter will suffice as AOE damage until you can cast Fireball. At this level many enemies still have middling or poor Constitution saves, so Shatter’s biggest drawback is less of a problem.

Flaming Sphere is the wizard’s earliest summon spell. It’s a bit complicated, and really the only way to get a hang of it is to practice. Be mindful of the flaming terrain that it leaves so that you don’t kill your party, and remember that the Flaming Aura is automatic damage with no save. Both will affect your allies and Sculpt Spells doesn’t apply, so be cautious around allies, and dismiss the summon as soon as combat ends or the AI will automatically walk the sphere right into the middle of your party and start eating hit points.
4Feat: Elemental Adept (Fire)
New Cantrip Known: Acid Splash
New Spells Known:
– Any 2
Since we’re relying so heavily on fire damage, Elemental Adept is a great feat.

If you’re using Flaming Sphere, be extra mindful here. Allies who were previously resistant to fire damage will suddenly take much more damage when you accidentally hit them.
5New Spells Known:
– Fireball
– Animate Dead
Fireball is immediately your best spell, and remains among your best spells for the whole game. It does a ton of damage in an area of effect, and it scales so well with higher-level spell slots that it often outpaces higher-level spells. The biggest problem is that it also hits your allies, and Sculpt Spells lets us sidestep that.

Animate Dead gets us a pet that lasts all day. I personally prefer skeletons because they’re more likely to survive by virtue of fighting at range.
6Potent Cantrip
New Spells Known:
– Any 2
Potent Cantrip is a bit of a pain. There are exactly two wizard cantrips that call for saving throws, and neither of them are Evocation spells, so they don’t benefit from Empowered Evocation once you get it at 10th level. Still, using Acid Splash with Potent Cantrip is pretty great until then.
7New Spells Known:
– Wall of Fire
– Any
Wall of Fire is a wonderful spell in a game where it’s easy to shove or throw enemies through the wall.
8Feat: Ability Score Increase (Intelligence 17 -> 19)
New Spells Known:
– Any 2
Not super exciting, but more Intelligence improves your spellcasting.
9New Spells Known:
– Cone of Cold
– Any
Cone of Cold’s damage won’t beat a Fireball cast using the same spell slot, especially since Cone of Cold targets a Constitution save, but Cone of Cold also knocks enemies prone, making it easy for your allies to attack any survivors.
10Empowered Evocation
New Cantrip: Any
New Spells Known:
– Any 2
Empower Evocation is an excellent damage boost. It only applies to Evocation spells, but most of our damage spells (Fire Bolt, Fire Ball, Cone of Cold) are Evocation spells, so you don’t need to worry too much. Just remember that it adds to one damage roll of the spells, so spells like Flaming Sphere which deal damage repeatedly don’t get to add the bonus repeatedly.
11New Spells Known:
– Chain Lightning
– Circle of Death
11th level brings 6th-level spells, which are the best spells available in Baldur’s Gate 3 due to the level cap of just 12.

Chain Lightning is the natural go-to damage spell at this level, but its primary appeal is the ability to not hit your allies. Thanks to Sculpt Spell, that’s not a problem. It’s still useful against groups of enemies that are too spread out to hit with Fireball, of course.

Circle of Death is only useful for huge crowds. The damage is poor and it targets Constitution saves, but the radius is enormous.
12Feat: Ability Score Increase (Constitution 15 -> 16, Intelligence 19 -> 20)
New Spells Known:
– Any 2
Not very exciting, but if you haven’t been able to get Intelligence to 20 yet, you really should.