Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Class Guide – In this Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Class Guide, I’m going to be covering the Ranger Class, including all 3 Subclasses, and providing you some useful information. I’ll be doing more Build Guides for Baldur’s Gate 3, but for now, let’s just look at how a Ranger functions and its basics.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Class Guide
Rangers in BG3 are unique because not only do they excel inside of combat, but also outside, and have arguably the most Proficiencies of any Class in the game if you factor in Weapons, Armour and Skills.
Rangers, like Paladins, not only excel in martial combat, but can also cast a select number of Spells, aiding them both inside and outside of combat. Many of their Spells are nature oriented, not unlike Druids, such as Barkskin, Spike Growth, and Plant Growth. And some have a focus on ranged attacks like Ensnaring Strike, Hail of Thorns and Lighting Arrow.
Also, like Druids, Rangers have an affinity for animals, and can not only Find Familiar and have Proficiency in Animal Handling, but can cast Animal Friendship, and Speak with Animals. Beast Masters can also summon an Animal Companion every Short Rest, allowing them to bring an ally onto the battlefield.
BG3 Ranger Character Creation
In this section, we’ll take a look at how to set up your Ranger during Character Creation for the best results. We’ll begin with Abilities first, since this is arguably the most important part, aside from choosing your Subclass.
Your primary Ability as a Ranger is Dexterity, though Rangers also use Wisdom for the Difficulty Class of their hostile Spells. This means all Rangers will likely have some Wisdom, unless not using any hostile Ranger Spells. Additionally, Rangers can also go the Strength route for melee combat if they wish, so they don’t necessarily have to use Dexterity, though the majority of Rangers will.
- Dexterity increases your Attack Rolls, Damage Rolls, boosts Armour Class and Initiative, improves Sleight of Hand, Acrobatics and Stealth Checks, as well as improves Dexterity Saving Throws. It’s incredibly good for a Ranger.
- Wisdom increases the Spell DC of your Ranger Spells, and increases your Wisdom Skill Checks and Wisdom Saving Throws.
- Constitution is there to help keep you alive via HP, though Rangers have decent HP, so you don’t need to go too crazy with it.
For this reason, I strongly recommend that you invest 16 in DEX and 14 in CON during Character Creation. Wisdom will vary depending on whether or not you plan to use hostile Ranger spells or not, but if you’re not sure I wouldn’t go higher than 14 during Character Creation, or 16 if you are sure you will.
- STR 10
- DEX 16
- CON 16
- INT 10
- WIS 14
- CHA 8
Hostile Spells Ranger
- STR 10
- DEX 16
- CON 14
- INT 10
- WIS 16
- CHA 8
- STR 16
- DEX 10
- CON 16
- INT 10
- WIS 14
- CHA 8
Note I’ve changed this from the recommendations as it more optimizes your Character during the early goings of the game.
Elf is good for Fey Ancestry. They also gain Darkvision, which can help land your attacks in dark places. High Elves also have Perception Proficiency, while Wood Elves have Stealth Proficiency and can move further. Either are a good choice, granting one Skill Proficiency you might likely take anyway.
Deep Gnome is also fantastic for Advantage on Wisdom, Intelligence and Charisma Saving Throws, as well as Superior Darkvision, and they also have Advantage on Stealth Checks. Great if you want to go Gloom Stalker, though the Superior Darkvision will be redundant.
Lightfoot Halflings are another solid choice, because they reroll if they roll a 1 on any Attack Roll, Ability Check or Saving Throw, all but preventing them from ever Critically Missing. They also cannot be Frightened easily and they too have Advantage on on Stealth Checks.
Drow have Superior Darkvision, Fey Ancestry and Perception Proficiency, which are all decent pick ups for the Ranger.
Half-Orc is also a good choice, especially for melee focused Rangers, since they have Darkvision, Relentless Endurance, and Savage Attacks.
For Skills Rangers can handle the lockpicking and pickpocketing of the group if you don’t have a Rogue or Bard. However, you can pick up Sleight of Hand Proficiency from Natural Explorer if you want, so I like the Folk Hero Background to grab Animal Handling and Survival. Pay attention to your Background, Race and Favoured Enemy and Natural Explorer to make sure you are not overlapping! You can come out of Character Creation with 8 Proficiencies if you do it right!
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 1
At level 1, Rangers get to choose a Favoured Enemy from a list of 5. This will provide them with an additional Skill Proficiency, and one other Feature. Which you select will help further define your Ranger. For instance, if you want Heavy Armour Proficiency, then you might select Ranger Knight. Or if you plan to use Ensnaring Strike a lot, you might choose Bounty Hunter. You will gain 2 more Favoured Enemies as you progress in Ranger levels, so keep that in mind when making your selection.
Also at this level, Rangers get to choose 1 from the Natural Explorer list. This will either provide the Ranger the ability to cast Find Familiar without using a Spell Slot, give them Sleight of Hand Proficiency or give them Damage Resistance from one of three damage types. Just like with Favoured enemy, you will get to choose 2 more of these as you level up in Ranger.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 2
At level 2, Rangers can choose 1 Fighting Style from a list of 4. They don’t have all Fighting Styles available to them, like Fighters do, and they are missing Great Weapon Fighting and Protection. This makes them less likely to use a Two-Handed Weapon or a Shield, though they still can if they wish.
Fighting Styles Available:
- Archery – You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls you make with ranged weapons.
- Defense – While you are wearing armor, you gain a +1 bonus to AC.
- Dueling – When you are wielding a melee weapon in one hand and no other weapons, you gain a +2 bonus to damage rolls with that weapon.
- Two-Weapon Fighting – When you engage in two-weapon fighting, you can add your ability modifier to the damage of the second attack.
Ranger Level 1 Spells
Also at this level, Rangers will gain the ability to cast Spells and will gain 2 level 1 Spell Slots, and can select 2 Spells from their Spell List. Many of these spells are utility-type Spells, but some are offensive in nature as well. If you don’t have at least 14 Wisdom, I highly recommend selecting Spells that target friendlies, rather than enemies, or you might have a hard time landing these Spells.
|Level 1 Spell Slots
|Level 2 Spell Slots
|Level 3 Spell Slots
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 3
At level 3, all Rangers choose a Subclass and gain Features based on their selection. We’ll go over what these are in the Subclasses section, so for now let’s carry on with general Ranger progression.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 4
At level 4, all Rangers gain their first Feat. Ability Improvement is a great choice for Rangers in order to increase Dexterity or Wisdom, but there are other good Feats as well.
For instance, Dual Wielder is great for Ranger if you want to use two non-light weapons and gain +1 Armour Class, and Lucky is great for picking up some uses of Advantage and controlling outcomes. Sharpshooter is great on Rangers that use Bows or Crossbows to further boost damage, and Great Weapon Master is good for more Attacks, even if not using a Two-Handed Weapon.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 5
At Level 5 Rangers gain Extra Attack, which lets them perform a second attack in a turn if they use the Attack Action. This means that you cannot cast a general Ranger spell and then attack, but must attack either with a default Attack Action, Weapon Action, or use Ensnaring Strike.
Ranger Level 2 Spells
At this level you will also gain access to Level 2 Spells and Level 2 Spell Slots. Remember that some Level 1 Spells can be “Upcast” using Level 2 Spell Slots for improved effect, and some cannot, so make sure to learn which do.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 6
At level 6, Rangers get to choose their second Favoured Enemy from the same list. Try to select something that gives you a new Skill Proficiency if possible.
Also at this level, Rangers get to choose another Natural Explorer from the same list. Consider taking Damage Resistance if you haven’t already.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 7
At level 7, all Rangers gain a Subclass Feature, and we’ll cover those in the Subclasses section.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 8
Land’s Stride: Difficult Terrain
At level 8, Rangers are no longer effected by Difficult Terrain and it no longer halves their Movement Speed when moving through it.
Also at this level, Rangers gain their second Feat. Ability Improvement is still good for Dexterity or Wisdom, or are any of the other Feats I already mentioned.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 9
Level 3 Ranger Spells
At Level 9, Ranger’s gain access to Level 3 Spells and Level 3 Spell Slots, and this is the highest level they will learn in BG3. This gives them access to Lightning Arrow, which can be devastating when setup properly for it.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 10
Hide in Plain Sight
At level 10, Rangers gain Hide in Plain Sight, allowing them to turn Invisible and gain +10 to Stealth Checks as long as they don’t move or perform any Actions or interactions. You can use this as many times per day as you want, you just can’t move while using it, so it’s more of a panic button than anything, though it can be used to setup ambushes occasionally.
Also at this level, Rangers get to choose their final Favoured Enemy from the same list. Try to select something that gives you a new Skill Proficiency if possible.
Rangers will also get to choose their final Natural Explorer from the same list at this level. Consider taking another Damage Resistance. You cannot have too many.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 11
At level 11, all Rangers gain their final Subclass Feature, and we’ll cover those in the Subclasses section.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Level 12
At level 12, Rangers gain their final Feat. Ability Improvement is still good for Dexterity or Wisdom, or are any of the other Feats I already mentioned.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Equipment
Rangers in BG3 will use a wide variety of equipment, and since they have Proficiency with virtually every Armour and Weapon type in the game, you can really use whatever you wish. However, because you can’t take Great Weapon Fighting, it’s much more likely that Rangers will either dual wield, use a one-hand an shield or focus on ranged attacks from afar.
It’s likely most Rangers will use Medium or Light Armour due to their high Dexterity, and due to their natural inclination towards Stealth. Just make sure if you’re using Medium Armour it doesn’t provide Disadvantage to Stealth Checks, some do.
Rangers will also use a Bow, Crossbow or Dual Crossbows to strike from range generally. Some Ranger Spells require a Ranged Weapon to use, even if they don’t use Dexterity for their Spell DC, like Hail of Thorns and Lightning Arrow, making Ranger lean a little more to the ranged side of things than a Fighter.
Accessory-wise, look for things that boost damage, or increase Movement Speed. Rangers can benefit from Movement Speed since they are not as mobile as Rogues or Monks.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Subclasses
Choosing a Ranger Subclass in BG3 comes down to how you want to augment your Ranger. Do you want an Animal Companion that you can direct on the battlefield? Choose Beast Master. Do you want to just generally be a bit better in combat? Choose Hunter. Do you want to get an additional attack at the beginning of each combat, and have a focus on Stealth? Choose Gloom Stalker.
Dread Ambusher: Hide
Disguise Self (Spell)
|Misty Step (Spell)
All Rangers gain their first Subclass Feature at level 3 when they select their Subclass, and then once again at level 7, and finally one more time at level 11. However, Beast Masters and Gloom Stalkers also gain a Subclass Feature at level 5, and Gloom Stalkers gain another one at level 9.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Hunter
At level 3, Hunters get to choose one of three passive features that effect what they can do in combat.
- Horde Breaker: Target two creatures standing close to each other, attacking them in quick succession.
- Giant Killer: If a Large or bigger creature attacks you, you can use your Reaction to make a melee attack.
- Colossus Slayer: Once per turn, your weapon attack deals an extra 1d8 damage if the target is below its hit point maximum.
Horde Breaker is great for giving the Ranger more AoE, allowing them to hit more targets with each attack, as long as they are close to one another, and works with ranged or melee attacks. However, you can only use it once per turn.
Giant Killer is probably only one you would select if you were playing predominantly a melee Ranger, since if you are playing ranged you don’t want to be anywhere near large enemies.
Colossus Slayer is good for taking out tough to kill targets, but it only adds 1D8 damage per turn.
At level 7, Hunters gain Defensive Tactics, allowing them to choose one of three passives that help them defensively in combat:
- Escape the Horde: Opportunity Attacks against you have Disadvantage.
- Steel Will: Advantage on Saving Throws against being Frightened.
- Multiattack Defence: Enemies have a -4 penalty to additional Attack Rolls against you until the start of their next turn.
Of these Multiattack Defence is really the best option, particularly since by the time you get it many enemies will attack twice each turn.
Volley & Whirlwind Attack
At level 11, Hunters gain Volley and Whirlwind Attack, allowing them to hit many enemies in an AoE whether from range or in melee combat. These can be used as an Attack Action, allowing you to use them twice per turn thanks to Extra Attack.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Beast Master
At level 3, Beast Masters gain a Companion they can summon as an Action once every Short Rest. There are 5 different Companions they can choose, and each one has its own stats and attacks. Companions increase in HP, Armour Class, and capabilities as the Beast Master levels up.
Additionally, all Ranger Companions gain Prey’s Scent, that allows them to deal 1D6 damage to enemies the Ranger has marked with Hunter’s Mark. And they all have Darkvision and a Movement Speed of 9m, so there is no difference between them in this regard.
|Kick Up Muck
Wolf Spider Companion
Dire Raven Companion
|Improved Beak Attack
Improved Beak Attack
On Black Wings
At level 5, Beast Masters add their Proficiency Bonus to the Armour Class (AC) and Damage Rolls of their Ranger Companions. This makes them even more efficient in combat, particularly because all Ranger Companions gain HP, and more Features at this level as well.
At level 7, the Beast Master’s Ranger Companion can Dash, Disengage and Help as a Bonus Action. This allows them to move more freely in combat and still Attack in the same turn, and being able to help a downed ally as a Bonus Action is quite strong in a pinch.
At level 11, the Beast Master’s Ranger Companion can also make an Extra Attack in combat, making it a total of 4 Attacks between Beast Master and Companion. Ranger Companions also gain more HP, and Features at this level, and some gain increased Armour Class as well.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Gloom Stalker
At level 3, Gloom Stalkers gain Dread Ambusher, giving them a +3 bonus to Initiative, and on their first turn of combat their Movement Speed increases by 3m and they can make a free Attack that deals an increased 1D8 damage. This is incredibly powerful, but remember it only applies to the first turn in combat, and no subsequent turns.
Dread Ambusher: Hide
Also at this level, Gloom Stalkers will be able to Hide as a Bonus Action, similar to Rogues, allowing them to Attack and Hide on the same turn.
Also at level 3, Gloom Stalkers gain Superior Darkvision, allowing them to see 24m in dark places, helping with their hit chance from long range in dark areas.
Gloom Stalkers of this level can also become Invisible for 10 turns as long as they are at least Lightly Obscured. They can only use this Feature once every Short Rest.
And lastly at this level, Gloom Stalkers gain the Disguise Self Spell, that can be used at will outside of combat.
At level 5, Gloom Stalkers learn the Misty Step Spell, which allows them to teleport as a Bonus Action.
At level 7, Gloom Stalkers gain Iron Mind, granting them Proficiency in Wisdom and Intelligence Saving Throws, making these much more easy for them to succeed in.
At level 9, Gloom Stalkers learn the Fear Spell, allowing them to Frighten a large group of enemies.
At level 11, Gloom Stalkers can make a free Attack if they miss a Weapon Attack in combat. This drastically increases the chances of landing Attacks, and is a really powerful Subclass Feature.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Guide – Multiclassing
In this section of our Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Class Guide we’ll take a look at Multiclassing a Ranger in BG3, and what other Classes you might Multiclass with. Keep in mind this is not a complete list, but rather helpful suggestions to that make good pairings.
When To Multiclass
Multiclassing a Ranger can be a bit trickier than some other Classes, because each Subclass is so different. However, there are a couple of things that make it a bit more clear. Both Hunters and Gloom Stalkers gain their best Features at level 3, making this a great place to Multiclass them. Additionally, Rangers gain Extra Attack at level 5, so this would mark another good place to Multiclass them.
However, a Beast Master’s Companion gets stronger and stronger as they level up, and dipping 3 levels into Beast Master to get a Companion that will likely die in a turn doesn’t seem worth it. For this reason, it’s unlikely Beast Masters will Multiclass more than a few levels of another Class, in order to get the most from their Companion.
I like 5 levels of Hunter and 7 levels of of Nature Cleric. This allows you to gain the Extra Attack from Ranger, as well as Horde Breaker or Colossus Slayer, and level 2 spells for the Ranger. You’ll also gain access to Cleric level 4 spells, which also use Wisdom, have tons of Spell Slots, gain Shilleglagh so you can attack in melee with your Wisdom Modifier, and you’ll gain Proficiency in Survival, Animal Handling or Nature. That’s 2 Attacks, access to level 4 Cleric and level 2 Ranger spells, and 9 Skill Proficiencies if you plan accordingly!
Multiclassing Beast Master
I like 9 levels of Beast Master and 3 levels of Way of the Open Hand Monk. This allows you to hit the second to last break point in HP upgrades on your Companion, still gives you Exceptional Training, and Companion’s Bond, and you have Extra Attack from the Ranger and level 3 Ranger Spells.
Monk will give you the option to use Dexterity to make melee Attacks, even without Finesse Weapons, will allow you to add your Wisdom to your AC if not using Armour. It’ll give you Dash and Disengage as a Bonus Action if you have the Ki for it, and give you Patient Defence. You’ll also gain Deflect Missile, and Flurry of Blows which can further bolster your damage with your Bonus Action.
Multiclassing Gloom Stalker
I like 5 levels of Gloom Stalker and 7 levels of Thief. This gives you Dread Ambusher, Hide as a Bonus Action, Umbral Shroud, and Misty Step, on top of Extra Attack and Level 2 Ranger Spells on the Ranger side.
Thief gives you an extra Bonus Action you can use to Hide or to dual wield and attack with your offhand again, and you’ll gain 4D6 Sneak Attack Damage at this level, which is still pretty good.
You could also go 5 levels of Gloom Stalker for the same reasons, and go 7 of War Domain in order to be able to use your Bonus Action to attack again. This would give you 4 attacks on the first turn of combat, and access to level 4 Cleric Spells.
I hope you found these tips helpful, and we’ll have some more Builds out really soon that showoff more of these Multiclassing aspects!
That wraps up our Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Class Guide! Stay tuned for more Baldur’s Gate 3 content as we update the other Builds, and be sure to drop by our Twitch Channel if you have questions about the game. If you need something specific, check out our Baldur’s Gate 3 Wiki which is being worked on night and day, as well as our Baldur’s Gate 3 Guides.