In this Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Build Guide, I’m going to be showing you the 3 Best Beginner Monk Builds that you can use to put together an effective Monk early on in the game. I wanted to give some early-game Builds for those of you who are near the beginning of the game. This is going to go to Level 6.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Best Beginner Monk Builds
We’ll be doing proper Advanced Build Guides later on but for now, each one of these Builds is going to show a different Subclass of the Monk. These aren’t Multiclassed because you’re better off reaching 5 levels for this Class to also get Extra Attack. There aren’t a lot of reasons to go with 3 levels of Monk combined with something else.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Way of the Four Elements Monk Build
So the first BG3 Build we’re going to take a look at is 6 levels of Way of the Four Elements Monk. The reason why it’s good to take this is to gain access to three more Monk Spells that you wouldn’t have access to if you only took 6 levels. What I really like about it is that you get everything else you’d gain with a Monk such as an Extra Attack, Stunning Strike, Deflect Missiles, and Patient Defense to give enemies a Disadvantage on their attacks.
There are a lot of melee stuff you can still do as the Monk but you can also throw out an AOE Spell every now and then if you need one. If you get surrounded, and in this case, enemies become grouped together, you can execute an AOE attack most Martial Classes don’t have. That’s the downside of playing a Martial Class in Baldur’s Gate 3 because they typically don’t have a lot of AOE options.
Now since you can still spend your Ki on Flurry of Blows, Patient Defense, or Step of the Wind, you continue to have options. You’re not limited to casting a Spell every time and instead, you can perform melee Actions in Combat. So it really gives you several different things with the Way of the Four Elements Monk, making this Build fantastic.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Way of Shadow Monk Build
So next let’s take a look at 6 levels of Way of Shadow Monk. A good reason to go with 6 levels instead of 5 plus something else here is that you gain Shadow Step at Level 6. This is going to allow you to teleport as a Bonus Action from a lightly obscured place to another lightly obscured place and then your next melee attack for 1 turn is going to gain an Advantage. Shadow Step is arguably one of the best Class Features in the game because it’s basically a free teleport for every turn as long as you’re not situated in the most well-lit place.
You can stay away from enemies and they’ll never really be able to catch you because of your swift movement speed and teleportation ability. And since it’s a Bonus Action, you could theoretically attack with Stunning Strike and then teleport away.
Hide and Cloak of Shadows
Another thing that I really love about BG3 Way of Shadow Monks is their ability to Hide as a Bonus Action like Rogues or Gloom Stalker Rangers can. So you can make an attack to kill an enemy and then move away and Hide so you can’t be attacked when it’s not your turn. This is a great way to prevent from taking damage.
Next is Cloak of Shadows, which is another good Subclass Feature you gain at Level 5. This allows you to become Invisible for 10 turns as long as you’re lightly obscured and it has no rest requirement, which means that you can go Invisible almost anywhere you want. Cloak of Shadows is very strong other than the fact that you have to be lightly obscured when using it. Alternatively, you can always move into a lightly obscured area and then cast this if you need to, especially when you’re sneaking around like in the Shadow Cursed Lands.
Way of Shadow and Rogue
The Way of Shadow pairs very well with the Rogue in order to get Sneak Attack Damage because you can use Shadow Step to position yourself next to an enemy to gain an Advantage on your attack. But at this point in the game, you don’t want to sacrifice your Extra Attack for Sneak Attack Damage and besides, you won’t gain Shadow Step at Level 6 so you really can’t multiclass well until you reach Level 7. From there, you could start taking levels of Rogue for the Sneak Attack.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Way of the Open Hand Monk Build
Lastly, we come to Baldur’s Gate 3 Way of the Open Hand Monk Build, which again has 6 levels. You’ll also want Extra Attack and Stunning Strike at Level 5. Remember that this Subclass gains Manifestation of Mind, Manifestation of Body, and Manifestation of Soul at Level 6, allowing them to add different damage types to their unarmed attacks.
Additionally, they gain Wholeness of Body, which can heal them, give them an extra Bonus Action for 3 turns, and give them 1 Ki point per turn. Half of their Ki is even replenished, making it really strong in combat because you’ll be able to use Flurry of Blows or unarmed attack 2x for every turn on top of your regular attack.
Flurry of Blows Modifications
For the Way of the Open Hand Monks, you want to use the modified Flurry of Blows as a result of this Feature’s modifications to stagger an enemy because there is no Saving Throw. And so, they won’t be able to take Reactions. You’ll then hit them a couple of times and then run away since they can’t trigger Attacks of Opportunity.
Flurry of Blows: Push does have a Saving Throw and so does the Topple Action. Push targets the Strength of the character while Topple targets Dexterity. The Saving Throws of these is equal to 10 + Strength or Dexterity Modifier. This I believe has changed a little bit from the way it’s handled in D&D 5th Edition tabletop where it would use your Proficiency Wisdom Modifier + 8. The higher you crank your Dexterity or Strength depending on what type of Monk you are is going to make it even more likely to pull off these attacks, which is great because then, you don’t have to worry about Wisdom if you’re playing a Way of the Open Hand Monk.
Way of the Open Hand Monk Multiclassing
For this Subclass, I would see multiclassing with a Thief in order to gain an extra Bonus Action. It means when you’re using Wholeness of Body, you have 3 Bonus Actions for 3 turns and if you attack, then you gain your Extra Attack so you could theoretically get 5 attacks there. Keep in mind that you can use Stunning Strike too as your first attack and free attack, which you gain from Extra Attack. So you can stun, kill, and push a lot of things, making this a strong pairing.
And it doesn’t even factor in the potential Sneak Attack Damage you deal. Just remember that you won’t start multiclassing until you hit Level 7.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Builds: Final Thoughts
So that wraps up our 3 early-game Monk Builds. I hope you can see why I didn’t multiclass them because there are a lot of good Features to gain at Level 5. And then each Subclass gets something special at Level 6. So for most Monk Builds, you’re either going to take 3 levels and go 9 levels with something else or you’re going to reach Level 6 Monk first followed by Level 6 from another Subclass. The benefits you gain are really strong.
Again, if you have more tips or questions, please leave them in the comments below. I will try and answer them.
Stay tuned for more Baldur’s Gate 3 content.