Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk build guide – race, subclass, BG3 skills

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk build guide – race, subclass, BG3 skills
Aden Carter Updated on by

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Let’s create the best Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk build. Monks are great damage dealers in BG3 thanks to abilities like Flurry of Blows and Stunning Strike. Unlike typical classes in the game, they are able to use their Dexterity and Wisdom bonuses for their armor class.

If you want other great classes, check out the Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Barbarian Build and Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Sorcerer Build, but none have the same capabilities as the Monk class. Depending on the subclass you choose, you can throw magic, meld into the darkness, or strike foes with devastating unarmed attacks.

Whether you prefer to be stealthy like a Rogue or destructive like a Fighter, the Monk class has you covered. There are a lot of classes and subclasses to choose from but this guide will show you how to best build the monk for your playstyle.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Best Monk Build

A screenshot of a character in armor in Baldur's Gate 3.
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Monks are a great starting class for those who want versatility and don’t want to dive head-first into being a spellcaster. Monks get the extra attacks that a Fighter gets and some of the subclasses allow for extra abilities like spells to help you attack from a distance.

As a Monk, you have the following skill proficiencies:

  • Armour Proficiency  – Clothing
  • Weapon Proficiency – Simple weapons, Shortswords
  • Skill Proficiency – Athletics, Acrobatics, Stealth, Religion, Insight
  • Saving Throw Proficiency – Strength & Dexterity

Best Monk Race in Baldur’s Gate 3

When it comes to the Monk class, you will want to pick a race that has greater movement. Having some extra spells doesn’t hurt either.

  • Wood Elf/Half Wood Elf – Wood Elves have the Fleet of Foot racial feature that grants them increased movement speed in combat. Instead of the base nine meters, it is increased to 10.5. This makes them great for maneuvering around the battlefield.
  • Drow/Half-Drow – Drow elves gain both the Darkness and Faerie Fire spells. These spells are great during combat for blinding your foes and granting yourself advantage on attack rolls.
  • Half-Orc – Half-Orcs get the Savage Attacks racial feat that grants them increased damage whenever they score a critical hit. Since you will be attacking multiple times per turn, this will get you more chances to deal bonus damage whether it is with your weapon or martial arts skills.

Background for a Monk

Here are the best backgrounds for the Monk class:

  • Outlander – Grants you proficiency in Athletics and Survival
  • Urchin – Grants you proficiency in Sleight of Hand and Stealth
  • Acolyte – Grants you proficiency with Insight and Religion

Equipment for the Monk

Here are the best Monk weapons, armor, and accessories:

  • The Graceful Cloth – Increases your Dexterity score by +2 and grants you a +1 on Dexterity Saving Throws. It also increases your jump distance.
  • Garb of the Land and Sky – Using Step of the Wind grants you Advantage on your next attack roll and and deals additional force damage. When using Patient Defense, you gain the effects of Blade Ward.
  • Punch Drunk Bastard – Gives you advantage on your attack rolls when you have the Alcohol effect. You also deal an additional 1d4 damage with each attack.
  • Harper Sacredstriker – Allows you to use Spiritual Weapon at 6th level.
  • Ring of Regeneration – Heals you for 1d4 hit points each round.
  • Caustic Band – Deal additional acid damage.
  • Amulet of Misty Step – Grants you the Misty Step spell.
  • Amulet of Greater Health – Raises your Constitution Score to 23.
  • Gloves of Cinder and Sizzle – Your unarmed strikes deal an additional 1d4 fire damage.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Ability Scores

A screenshot of a character in armor in the game featuring a Baldur's Gate 3 monk build.
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The ability scores of the Monk are different than those that we use in the table below. The reason for this is that, as a Monk, your primary scores should be Wisdom and Dexterity. This is because you use both ability modifiers for your AC. After that, you should prioritize your Constitution to increase your health and strength in case it is needed for checks.

Strength (Str)12
Dexterity (Dex)17
Constitution (Con)12
Intelligence (Int)8
Wisdom (Wis)16
Charisma (Cha)9

As you progress through the levels, you can use Feats to increase your Wisdom and Dexterity to further enhance your Armor Class.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Best Monk Subclass

A screenshot of a monk character in Baldur's Gate 3.
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The Monk Class has three subclasses that you can choose from. These are:

  • Way of the Four Elements – You focus your ki to bend the elements to your will, using them as an extension of your own body.
  • Way of the Open Hand – You specialize in unarmed combat, using your hands and your control of ki to heal or inflict grievous hurt.
  • Way of Shadow – You value the arts of stealth and subterfuge, bending the shadows to your will to strike without warning.

Of all the subclasses, the most useful is the Way of the Open Hand. This subclass gets the following abilities:

  • Flurry of Blows: Topple
  • Flurry of Blows: Stagger
  • Flurry of Blows: Push
  • Manifestation Body
  • Manifestation Mind
  • Manifestation Soul
  • Wholeness of Body
  • Ki Resonation: Punch
  • Ki Resonation: Punch (Bonus Action)
  • Ki Resonation: Blast
  • Tranquility

These abilities allow you to stagger a foe each turn with Flurry of Blows and then wreak havoc using other attacks and bonus actions. When mixed with extra attack and the other class features, you can essentially turn your fists into missiles.

As you level up, you will also get abilities to help with your evasion as well as abilities like Slow Fall and Deflect Missiles which let you take half damage from falling and deflect arrows.

Best Monk Feats in Baldur’s Gate 3

A screenshot of a Baldur's Gate 3 monk character.
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When leveling up, you will get three Feats that you can use to help you further your melee attacks, dodging abilities, or class features. The following are the best Feats for the Monk class:

  • Ability Improvement – This can be used to increase your Dexterity and Wisdom to further enhance your damage and Armor Class.
  • Athlete – Your Strength or Dexterity increases. When you are prone, standing up uses significantly less movement. Your jump distance also increases.
  • Durable – Your Constitution increases. You regain full hit points each time you take a short rest.
  • Lucky – You gain three luck points, which you can use to gain advantage on Attack Rolls, Ability Checks, or Saving Throws, or to make an enemy reroll their Attack Rolls.
  • Mobile – Your movement speed increases, and difficult terrain doesn’t slow you down when you dash. If you move after making a melee attack, you don’t provoke opportunity attacks from your target.
  • Tough – Your hit point maximum increases by two points for every level you have gained.

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Best Monk build explained – Way of the Open Hand

Unlike arcane classes like the Sorcerer or the Wizard, you don’t need to choose spells as you level up, making the leveling process for Monk very simple.

Level 1 – 4

Within the first four levels, you will get the Flurry of Blows abilities Stagger, Topple, and Push. These will allow you to use your Ki Points to stagger foes, knock them prone, or push them away to get distance from them.

When you hit level four, you will want to start with either an ability score improvement for your Feat to increase your Dexterity or Wisdom, or you will want to get the Mobile Feat to increase your movement speed.

Level 5 – 8

Jumping into the level five to eight range, you will get the Manifestation of Body, Manifestation of Soul, and Manifestation of Mind abilities. These will allow you to apply additional Radiant, Psychic, or Necrotic damage to your attacks.

When you reach level eight, you will unlock your second Feat. At this time, you will want to get the Durable Feat. This will allow you to get more health and get your hit points back on a short rest. At this point in the game, health will be very necessary. As a bonus, you will get Ki Points back from resting as well.

Level 9 – 12

During the level nine to 12 range, you will get the Ki Resonation ability. This allows you to use a special attack against foes and then use the Ki Resonation Blast ability to detonate the Ki for additional damage. You will also unlock the Tranquility class feature. This grants you a Sanctuary aura during a long rest which will keep you safe from damage until you attack.

For your final Feat, it doesn’t hurt to pick up the Tough Feat. This will get you a lot of additional health to make sure you aren’t very soft in battle. You can also pick up Lucky during this time to help you with the fights leading up to the end of the game.

That covers the best Monk build for Baldur’s Gate 3. Check out our Baldur’s Gate 3 review to learn more about this sprawling RPG. It’s already out on PC and PlayStation 5 so give the monk class a spin.

Is the Monk a good class in Baldur’s Gate 3?

Yes! The Monk is a great damage-dealing class that can overpower other classes when built correctly.

What is the best Monk subclass in Baldur’s Gate 3?

The best subclass for the Monk is the Way of the Open Hand. This will get you the most damage and allow for the most versatility during combat.