In this Baldur’s Gate 3 Companions Guide we’re going to take a look at Gale in BG3 Early Access, and which Spells, Feats, and Equipment to use, and how to improve your reputation with him. We’ll also discuss which are good Companions to take with him, and what your party might look like depending on which Companions you know for sure you want to use.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Early Access Companions Guide: Gale
There are five Companions you can acquire in Baldur’s Gate 3 Early Access, and you can bring three of them along with you at a time. You can travel back to your Camp at any time and swap them out to your liking, and it’s worth noting that Companions in your Camp gain experience the same as those in your party. Let’s take a look at Gale. He is probably the third Companion you will acquire.
Gale Abilities & Skills
Gale has average Ability Scores for a Wizard with greater focus on his most important Ability, which is Intelligence. At 16 Intelligence, his Spells are more likely going to hit enemies given the +3 Ability Modifier he gains from this.
Gale’s Dexterity could have been distributed better at 16 instead of 14 to give him +3 Dexterity Modifier thereby increasing his Armour Class and protecting him more from being hit by an enemy’s Attack Roll.
Gale’s Constitution could also be at 14 or 16 instead of 15 since he doesn’t gain +3 to his Constitution Modifier at 15. However, it is enough to gain a +2 bonus to your Constitution Saving Throws, which helps to maintain Concentration for some of your Cantrips and Spells, which I will discuss more in the Wizard Actions & Spells section.
At level 4, I highly recommend choosing the Ability Improvements Feat, which gives you 2 points to allocate to any of Gale’s Abilities. There are really 3 ways you can go about this: 1) increasing Intelligence to 18 to gain a +4 Ability Modifier on Arcana, History and Investigation Skill Checks, as well as Attack Rolls with his Spells, 2) increasing Dexterity to 16, which gives him a +3 Dexterity Modifier, adding +3 total to his Armour Class, and 3) you can also allot 1 point each to Constitution and Wisdom to raise both of their corresponding Ability Modifiers to +3 (CON) and +1 (WIS). A higher Constitution Score adds to Gale’s HP in addition to increasing his CON Saving Throw, which helps with maintaining Concentration. An improved Wisdom Score enhances his Saving Throw Proficiency with this Ability, as well as boost his Insight Skill Checks by +1. The choice is up to you, but if you intend to use the Warped Headband of Intellect on Gale, then obviously don’t choose 1, since you will waste this Feat.
Gale is Proficient in Arcana, History, Investigation and Insight. The first 3 Skills rely on Intelligence to work well, and Arcana and History allow you to recall relevant information on enchanted items and magical traditions as well as historical events and ancient people and kingdoms. Investigation helps you make deductions to solve your current predicament such as locating a hidden lever to open a mechanically-operated door. On the other hand, Insight is a Wisdom Skill that determines if someone is being deceptive or truthful. As such, Gale is very useful in scenarios when you feel doubtful towards certain NPCs so you can determine their true intentions.
At level 2, you unlock Arcane Tradition, which enables you to choose between two Schools of Magic (Subclasses) for Gale, namely the Evocation School or Abjuration School. The Evocation School is perfect for those who want to focus on dealing maximum damage with control, whereas the Abjuration School is a better path for those who intend to protect their party by predominantly casting defensive Spells such as creating magic barriers and debuffing targets. Between these two subclasses, I strongly suggest going for the Evocation School path because there are simply few Abjuration Spells in Early Access, and you won’t be casting them often.
Wizard Actions & Spells
As a Wizard, Gale makes use of Spell Slots to cast Spells – both of which are limited early on but increase as he levels up. So for example at level 1, you can only cast 2 level 1 Spells. Currently in Early Access, you can take Long Rests to replenish Spell Slots without any consequence whatsoever.
By default, Gale has the Arcane Recovery Action, which allows him to recharge spent Spell Slots outside of combat. Initially, it lets you recover 2 level 1 Spell Slots. At level 3, you will also have the option to recover 1 level 2 Spell Slot. Arcane Recovery is useful even if you take Long Rests because it allows you to cast buffs such as Mage Armour prior to combat, then replenish the Spell Slot you expended to cast it.
Gale has a lot of Known Spells to choose from but in order to cast these he has to “prepare” them, which essentially translates to “equip them outside of combat” in BG3. As he levels up, the total number of Known and Prepared Spells increases. Cantrips (Level 0 Spells), on the other hand, do not have to be prepared and they can be cast without consuming any Spell Slots.
Some Wizard Spells require Concentration in order to remain active. You can tell which these are because it will say on the Spell itself. Concentration can be broken if you cast another Spell that requires Concentration. So for example if you cast Witch Bolt on an enemy, but then you cast Protection From Good and Evil, you would stop “Concentrating” on Witch Bolt and begin Concentrating on Protection From Good and Evil.
But, that is not the only way Concentration can be broken. If you take damage while Concentrating on a Spell then you must make a Constitution Saving Throw, and if you fail then the effect of that Spell ends. Should you succeed in your Saving Throw, however, then you maintain your Concentration and the Spell continues. This is why it is important for Wizards to have Constitution, because they have Spells that require Concentration and they are wasted if it is constantly broken.
At level 1, you immediately have Cantrips. For these, I suggest using Fire Bolt or Ray of Frost since they provide decent Fire and Cold damage up to 18 meters away. For Spells, you can make use of Witch Bolt, Thunderwave and Mage Armour. Witch Bolt deals 1-12 Lightning damage at each successive turn provided that you maintain Concentration. It is a Ranged Attack, which means that you gain Advantage against an enemy if you are situated on higher ground.
Thunderwave provides you with a powerful 2-16 Thunder AoE damage that also knocks back enemies. Unlike the previous Spells, its range is rather short at only 5 meters so you can use this if an enemy happens to be near you.
Given Gale’s low AC, Mage Armour is a good Spell to prepare in order to increase Armour by 3. This spell can be cast outside of combat, and will last until you Long Rest. Don’t forget to recast it after Long Resting, since it will need to be reapplied every time you do.
Level 2 (Subclass Selection)
Compared to other Companions, Gale will be able to pick his subclass earlier at level 2, and the only difference between the 2 Schools in Early Access is their Passive Abilities. If you choose Evocation, you gain Sculpt Spells, which protects your allies from taking damage due to the AoE Spells you cast. This is rarely an issue since most of the good Cantrips and Spells are not AoEs, like Fire Bolt and Magic Missile.
If you choose Abjuration, you gain the Arcane Ward Passive Ability. The first time you cast an Abjuration Spell, you will gain a magical barrier of 3 HP to absorb any type of damage. This will be active until your next Long Rest. When the barrier’s HP is reduced to 0, you will start receiving damage. You can replenish it by casting more Abjuration Spells. What’s problematic with this Passive Ability is Arcane Ward’s low max HP at 3, the low number of Abjuration Spells to choose from, and the fact that you rarely need to re-cast Abjuration Spells. Mage Armor for instance only needs to be cast once per Long Rest.
At level 2, you learn 2 new Spells and your Prepared Spells increase from 4 to 5. The ones that I recommend are Magic Missile and Ray of Sickness. With Magic Missile, you can cast 3-4 darts depending on the Skill’s level. Each dart can be directed at different enemies or just a single one. It deals modest damage, and cannot miss. The fact that this Spell does not miss makes it invaluable in situations where enemies are hidden in darkness, when you are in lower ground, or when you are Threatened.
Meanwhile, Ray of Sickness grants you the ability to deal 2-16 Poison damage with a chance to poison the target. And, similar to Witch Bolt, this Spell can also make use of Advantage since it is considered a Ranged Attack, so be sure to cast it from high ground when you can.
Gale also has the capability to learn Spells unique to other classes. To do so, simply right-click on the scroll you’ve collected and select “Learn Spell”. You will then be asked to pay a certain amount of gold depending on the Spell. Note that by doing so, whatever has been learned will be added to Gale’s Known Spell list. One excellent Cleric Spell is called Guiding Bolt, which is another Ranged Attack Spell, and it will even use Gale’s Intelligence Modifier for its Attack Rolls, instead of Wisdom.
This allows you to deal 4-24 Radiant damage. The Spell is useful if you intend to finish off a menacing enemy due to its high damage potential. It is also helpful in creating a good follow-up attack on your next turn because it grants Advantage on that same enemy.
At level 3, you gain another level 1 Spell Slot. What becomes more interesting at this point is Gale finally gains 2 level 2 Spell Slots making some of his previous Prepared Spells more powerful. It also gives him the option to choose stronger Spells. The Darkvision Spell for example, allows him to see in shadowy areas of up to 18 meters away. As a result, he can effectively hit targets like underground spiders.
When it comes to damage-dealing Spells, there are 4 that really stand out.
Melf’s Acid Arrow is one of my favorite Spells because it deals damage twice. Upon casting, you deal 4-16 Acid damage. When the enemy’s turn ends, it will be inflicted with roughly half the Acid damage that they initially received. It can also inflict a small Acid AoE on enemies, thereby reducing their AC by 2.
Shatter, because of its long range and 3-24 AoE Thunder damage, can kill multiple targets. You don’t need this all that often, but it is particularly deadly under the right circumstances.
Scorching Ray allows you to hurl 3 rays of 2-12 Fire damage each at any 3 targets you wish, or even throw them all at the same target for massive damage. The flexibility of this Spell, along with the fact it gains Advantage from high ground make it one not to miss out on.
Misty Step is also a very versatile and useful Spell, and while it doesn’t deal damage directly, it lets you to teleport to any area that you can see, which allows you to gain height Advantage on enemies, or escape from them. It is a Bonus Action, so you can use it and then cast another Spell or Cantrip on the same turn, hopefully with Advantage.
As a Wizard, you also have to focus on equipment to effectively make Gale’s build work well. In terms of Clothing since he does not have Armour Proficiency, I recommend the Poisoner’s Robe from the Whispering Depths. This allows him to deal additional 1-4 Poison damage every time he casts Ray of Sickness or the Poison Spray Cantrip. Another option is to use Robe of Summer found in the Hidden Vault if you prefer to have resistance against Cold damage.
For Weapons, I highly recommend Corellon’s Grace from Auntie Ethel because this provides Unhampered Resistance which gives Gale an extra d4 to Saving Throws. Staff of Crones is also a good staff, which grants Gale level 1 Ray of Sickness even if he already knows this Spell. You can acquire the Staff of Crones from the Acrid Workshop.
The main advantage is that this Ray of Sickness costs no Spell Slots to cast, effectively making it a Cantrip that does 2-16 damage. Note that this Weapon is cursed so you receive 2-8 Poison damage every time you cast the granted Ray of Sickness, so it would be wise to equip the Ring of Poison Resistance, which can be found in the Shattered Sanctum, to minimize the damage received.
Additionally, wearing Poisoner’s Robe will activate its bonus damage when using the Ray of Sickness from the Staff of Crones. This didn’t used to be the case in earlier builds of the game, but now the two work together to give you an infinite cast of Ray of Sickness that deals 3-20 damage. Just be sure to manage the Poison Damage he takes!
For Accessories, you can equip the Warped Headband of Intellect to raise Gale’s Intelligence to 18. As a result, his Spellcasting Ability Modifier rises to +4, which increases the chances of successfully landing Gale’s Spells.
If you frequently use Magic Missile, an item that makes it even stronger is The Sapphire Spark, which you can buy from Blurg at the Ebonlake Grotto. This necklace grants Psychic Missiles, which adds 1-4 damage per Magic Missile dart. In total, you get 9-27 damage at level 1 Magic Missile and 12-36 damage at level 2 Magic Missile.
In this section I’ll show you how you can gain approval with Gale, as well as how you can gain disapproval if you wish. These are not all the ways possible in Early Access, but they are the ones we have accumulated on the Wiki so far:
- Tell Shadowheart in Camp that finding a healer is your top priority
- Successfully deceive Lae’zel captors when she’s in her cage.
- Persuade Aradin and Zevlor to calm down
- Convince Rolan to stay in the Druid Grove
- Agree to help Wyll save the refugees in the Druid Grove
- Invite Wyll to camp
- Show Guex in the Druid Grove your sword fighting technique
- Say that the Druids overreacted when speaking to Marriko and Locke in the Druid Grove
- Crush the Tadpole outside of the Druid Grove
- Convince the Owlbear not to kill you in its cave
- Invite the Owlbear cub to the camp.
- Attempt to heal the Owlbear cub in camp when they are wounded.
- Convince Krolla to take the Owlbear cub after playing the game and after talking to the Owlbear cub. Paying will not earn his approval.
- Tell Scratch (dog) that he can come to your Camp if his friend doesn’t wake up.
- Help Auntie Ethel when she’s confronted by Johl and Demir
- Agree to help Zevlor
- Make Novice Crusher kiss your foot in the Goblin Camp
- Tell Minthara that “I’m also on a hunt-You are my pray” in the first dialogue with her.
- Help Karlach in Hunt the Devil quest
- Sympathetic behaviours.
- Fight the fake god Boooal in THE FESTERING COVE.
- Insist on helping Mayrina when talking to Auntie Ethel at her house.
- Find the evidence of Kagha working with Shadow Druids and expose her. (Quest: Save the refugees)
- Bring Mayrina back home (Quest: Save Mayrina)
- Point out that Mayrina is being forced by Auntie Ethel to do things (Quest: Save Mayrina)
- Defy Kagha by not making a habit of threatening children
- Help improve Alfira’s song in the Druid Grove
- Drink from the Well in the Putrid Bog (Quest: Save Mayrina)
- Intervene in the dispute between Arka and the imprisoned goblin in the Makeshift Prison
- Save Arabella from imprisonment in the Emerald Grove (Quest: Save Arabella)
- Persuade Nettie to provide the antidote to the poison she administered
- Reassure Lae’Zel in the Camp that she will survive and please Vlaakith
- End the lives of the dying hyenas in The Risen Road
- Find Doni to see the Dragon’s Lair
- Prod Gale to tell you more about himself by succeeding in a Wisdom check
- Join Lae’Zal against the Tieflings if you Persuade them to free her.
- Smear dung on your face when Sentinel Olak asks you to
- Read the Necromancer Tome from Search the Cellar
- Agree to open the gate for goblin raiders.
- Tell Raphael you would do anything to remove the tadpole.
- When the player emulates the roar of a mind flayer while talking to Lorin.
- Pocket the ring when Mattis asks you to choose heads or tails
- Kill the Owlbear Cub and its parent
Gale is an interesting character to take with you if you want to experiment with a wide variety of offensive and defensive Spells. His Ability Score spread could definitely be improved, especially Dexterity, which influences his Dexterity Modifier resulting in better Armour Class and Initiative. I strongly recommend taking the Ability Improvements Feat so you can increase the score of 1 or 2 of his Abilities such as Dexterity, Constitution and/or Wisdom. Because of his Insight Proficiency, he can help extract the truth from NPCs in non-confrontational ways.
Equipping any of the Light, Medium or Heavy Armour will give him Disadvantage on his Attack Rolls, Saving Throws, Ability Checks and he won’t be able to cast Spells. This is because Gale does not have Armour Proficiency of any kind, though he could gain the Light Armour Proficiency Feat at Level 4 if you wish, which will allow him to wear Light Armour without any of these issues.
When it comes to casting and learning Spells, you have to remember two things. Only Spells that act as Ranged Attacks gives you Advantage if you position yourself at a higher ground than the enemy. Examples of these include Fire Bolt, Ray of Frost, and Ray of Sickness. In addition, you can learn any Spell from a different class as long as you have its corresponding scroll and you pay the gold requirement.
In terms of equipment, I prefer to use specific Weapons for their bonus features since Gale has minimum Weapon Proficiency, and won’t really be using Weapons in combat. Corellon’s Grace pairs well with your non-existent Armour Proficiency due to its bonus Saving Throw, whereas the Staff of Crones allows you to deal extra Poison damage via the Ray of Sickness Spell. Any Clothing such as the Poisoner’s Robe or the Robe of Summer works well as long as you do not equip Light, Medium or Heavy Armour, otherwise, you will be gravely penalized by not being able to cast Spells.
Lastly, you should consider picking Gale especially if you intend to either inflict heavy damage or cast debuffs using Spells. He also displays sympathetic behaviors so he can pleasantly interact with any of the four Companions and he is less likely to instigate fights with others. If you help people often you will gain his approval and friendship.
Stay tuned for more Baldur’s Gate 3 content as we take a look at Companions and 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!