Baldurs Gate 3 has 12 classes for you to choose from when you create your character. The Monk is a melee class that emphasizes nimbleness over brute strength.
Monks solve a lot of problems with punching like Fighters do, but they’re a lot fancier in how they do it. Their primary stat is Dexterity.
Read on to find out everything you need to know about the Monk class, and see if it’s the class you want to start with.
Monk class features
Monks are all about Dexterity and Wisdom, and there are several class features that reflect that.
- Unarmored Defense — while not wearing armor, you add your Wisdom modifier to your Armor Class
- Martial Arts: Dextrous Attacks — attacks with Monk Weapons (Simple Weapons that are not two-handed or heavy) and unarmed attacks scale with your Dexterity instead of Strength
- Martial Arts: Deft Strikes — attacks with Monk Weapons and unarmed attacks deal 1d4 Bludgeoning damage unless their normal damage is higher
- Martial Arts: Unarmed Strike — after making an attack with a Monk Weapon or while unarmed, you can make another unarmed attack as a bonus action
- Unarmored Movement — at level 2, your movement speed increases by 10ft while you are not wearing armor or using a shield
- Hit Dice — 1d8 per Monk level
- Hit Points at 1st Level — 8 + your Constitution modifier
- Hit Points at higher levels — 5 + your Constitution modifer per Monk level after 1st
Monks use Ki Points to power all of their extra attacks and actions. You start with 2 Ki Points at level 1, and gain a point per level after that. Ki Points recharge on a Short Rest.
At level 1, Monks get the Flurry of Blows Action that lets you do two extra melee attacks as a Bonus Action.
At level 2, Monks get three more Ki Point Actions:
- Patient Defense — for 1 turn, Attack Rolls against you have Disadvantage, and you have Advantage on Dexterity Saving Throws
- Step of the Wind: Dash — double your movement speed and jump no longer requires a bonus action
- Step of the Wind: Disengage — Retreat to safety by Disengaging and jump no longer requires a bonus action
- Weapons — Simple Weapons, Shortswords
- Skills — Acrobatics, Athletics, Insight, Religion
- Saving Throws — Dexterity, Constitution
At level 3, Monks choose from one of three subclasses.
Way of the Four Elements
Way of the Four Elements Monks use their Ki to control the elements.
You gain the Harmony of Fire and Water Action that lets you regain half of your Ki points once per Long Rest.
Way of the Four Elements Monks can cast spells using Ki instead of spell slots with Disciple of the Elements. You’ll choose three spells from the Monk spell list:
Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Way of the Four Elements spells
|Blade of Rime||Throw a shard of ice that deals 1d10 Piercing damage, and then explodes with 2d6 Cold damage in a 7ft radius circle|
|Chill of the Mountain||Reduce the target's movement speed by 10ft with 1d8 Cold damage|
|Fangs of the Fire Snake||Hit your foe with 1d10 Fire damage and your next melee attack deals 1d4 Fire damage|
|Fist of Four Thunders||Release a wafe of thunderous force that pushes away all creatures and objects for 2d8 Thunder damage (CON Save)|
|Fist of Unbroken Air||Push the target back 20ft and knock it Prone with 3d10 Bludgeoning damage|
|Rush of the Gale Spirits||Summon a strong wind that pushes creatures back 17ft and forces them Off Balance|
|Shaping of the Ice||Create a climable ice cube|
|Sphere of Elemental Balance||Hurl a sphere that deals 3d8 Thunder damage and possibly creates a surface on impact|
|Sweeping Cinder Strike||Expel fire from your outstretched hands and ignite anything flammable with 3d6 Fire damage|
|Touch of the Storm||Deal 1d10 Lightning damage and the target cannot use reactions|
|Water Whip||Deal 3d10 Bludgeoning damage and possibly pull the target toward you or knock it Prone|
Way of the Open Hand
Way of the Open Hand Monks specialize in unarmed combat. You learn three new Actions that use Ki Points.
- Flurry of Blows: Topple — Punch twice in quick succession for 2d6 Bludgeoning damage and possibly knock the target Prone
- Flurry of Blows: Stagger — Punch twice in quick succession for 2d6 Bludgeoning damage and Stagger the target to make them unable to take reactions
- Flurry of Blows: Push — Punch twice in quick succession for 2d6 Bludgeoning damage and possibly push the target 17ft away
Way of Shadow
Way of Shadow Monks hide in the shadows and focus on stealth and subterfuge.
You’ll learn the Minor Illusion Cantrip to distract enemies, and Shadow Arts: Hide that makes hiding a Bonus Action.
You’ll also get four new spell-like uses for your Ki Points:
- Shadow Arts: Pass Without Trace — gives you and all nearby companions a +10 bonus to Stealth Checks
- Shadow Arts: Darkness — create a dark shroud that Heavily Obscures and Blinds creatures within
- Shadow Arts: Darkvision — grant a creature the ability to see in the dark out to 40ft
- Shadow Arts: Silence — create a sound-proof sphere where all within are Silenced and Immune to Thunder damage.
For more information on the classes in Baldur’s Gate 3, consult our overviews on the Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sorcerer, Warlock, and Wizard classes. If you’re stumped by the choice, consult our guide on what class to start with.