Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build Guide

This guide focuses on the best Paladin build in Baldur’s Gate 3, the Oath of Vengeance subclass, and includes all components to build a powerful character.

Baldur's Gate 3 Paladin Smite
Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Smite

Paladin Class Introduction

The Oath of Vengeance Paladin focuses on hunting down and punishing those who have done wrong. Paladins of this Oath are driven by a burning desire for justice, and they will stop at nothing to see their enemies brought to ruin. Oath of Vengeance Paladin is a unique subclass that focuses on spells and abilities to deal with targeting specific types of enemies. This subclass will also open up different skills, abilities, and spells. You want to play this subclass for single target burst damage with a lot of debuff utility.

This build has been updated for the latest version of Baldur’s Gate 3

Pros of Paladin BuildCons of Paladin Build
Crowd ControlSpell Slot Starved
High Burst DamageLimited Spells
Heavy ArmourComplex

Paladin Class Features & Mechanics

The following list presents all the essential Oath of Vengeance Paladin Class Mechanics and Features in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  • Primary Ability: Charisma
  • Subclass: Oath of Vengeance
  • Armor Proficiency: Heavy Armour
  • Weapon Proficiency: Martial and Simple
  • Preferred Weapon: Two-hand Greatsword
  • Preferred Armor: Full Heavy Platemail
  • Channeled Oath Charges: Paladin-specific resource that allows the casting of spells and abilities.
  • Divine Smite: Expend spell slots to deal additional radiant damage on a successful melee attack.
  • Divine Health: The divine magic flowing within you prevents the disease from affecting you.  
  • Abjure Enemy: Frighten an enemy, Fiends and undead have Disadvantage on this Saving Throw.
  • Vow of Enmity: Gain Advantage on Attack Rolls against an enemy.

Paladin Spell Mechanics

  • Cantrips: are like spells , but you can cast them infinitely, and they don’t take your spell slots. 
  • Spell Slots: will use your spell slots, which are a limited resource during combat and will require a long rest in order to refill.
  • Prepared Spells: a Paladin mechanic that allows you to swap in and out spells prior to combat.
  • Concentration: is a spell mechanic in Baldur’s Gate 3 that some Spells require to maintain and keep their magic active. 

Paladin spell casting in general, is limited compared to other classes and builds. But the Divine Smite additional damage mechanic consuming spell slots is the real reason you can do an insane amount of damage. In general, save the spell slots for this usage unless needing a buff, heal, or crowd control.

Paladin Class and Best Subclasses

The Oath of Vengeance subclass is a great Paladin subclass in Baldur’s Gate 3 because it offers powerful damage abilities, debuffs, and high survivability.  You can unlock your subclass right away as a Paladin in the character creation screen.

Here are all the Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin subclasses:

  • Oathbreaker: damage-focused, crowd control, and control undead.
  • Oath of the Ancients: nature-based spell-focused, natural world Paladin.
  • Oath of Devotion: healing focused, radiant damage, “good” Paladin.
  • Oath of Vengeance: Seeks revenge and extra damage when tracking down enemies. Available on the full launch

Baldur’s Gate 3 Oath of Vengeance Paladin Features & Progression

The Oath of Vengeance subclass unlocks the following features and spells:

  • Oath of Vengeance Tenets (Level 1): Oath of Vengeance Paladins abide by the following tenets: Fight the Greater Evil. Exerting your wisdom, identify the higher morality in any given instance, and fight for it. No Mercy for the Wicked. Chasten those who dole out their villainy by wiping their blight from the world forever.
  • Inquisitor’s Might (Level 1): You or an ally’s weapon attacks deal additional Radiant damage equal to your charisma modifier (minimum of 1) and can Daze enemies for 2 turns.
  • Abjure Enemy (Level 3): Frighten an enemy. They’ll be easier to hit and cannot move. Fiends and undead have Disadvantage on this Saving Throw.
  • Vow of Enmity (Level 3): Gain Advantage on Attack Rolls against an enemy.
  • Oath Spells (Level 3): Band and Hunter’s Mark
  • Oath Spells (Level 5): Misty Step and Hold Person
  • Relentless Avenger (Level 7): If you hit an enemy with an Opportunity Attack, gain 4.5m movement next turn.
  • Oath Spells (Level 9): Haste and Protection from Energy

Paladin Divine Smite Explained

Divine Smite is a signature ability of the Paladin class in Baldur’s Gate 3. It allows a Paladin to expend a spell slot to deal additional radiant damage to a creature they have hit with a melee weapon attack. The amount of extra damage is equal to 2d8 for a 1st-level spell slot, plus 1d8 for each spell level higher than 1st. The damage increases by 1d8 if the target is an undead or a fiend.

Divine Smite can be toggled on or off in the reactions menu under the user interface. This allows you to make a decision if you want to use it or not. This is very important because the Paladin can run out of Spell Slots quickly, limiting damage. The last thing you want is to expend a spell slot needlessly on a weak creature.

Baldur's Gate 3 Divine Smite
Divine Smite Tooltip
Baldur's Gate 3 Reaction Menu
Reaction Menu
Baldur's Gate 3 Divine Smite Reaction
Divine Smite Reaction

Here are some tips for getting the Best Paladin Build to use Divine Smite effectively in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  • Save your higher-level spell slots for tougher enemies.
  • Use Divine Smite against enemies that are vulnerable to radiant damage.
  • Consider using Divine Smite on a critical hit, as this will maximize the amount of damage you deal.
  • Don’t be afraid to use Divine Smite multiple times per turn, especially if you are facing a group of enemies.
BG3 Noble Background

Noble is the Best Background for the Best Paladin Build in Baldur’s Gate 3 because you gain proficiency in Persuasion which scales in effectiveness based on your Charisma ability score. This choice mostly influences roleplaying and dialogue options aspects and allows you to create unique characters. Here’s a list of the best backgrounds for a Paladin:

  1. NobleProficiency in History and Persuasion. You were raised in a family among the social elite, accustomed to power and privilege.
  2. Guild ArtisanYour skill in a particular craft has earned you membership in a mercantile guild, offering privileges and protection while engaging in your art. Repairing and discovering rare crafts will bring new inspiration.
  3. CharlatanYou’re an expert in manipulation, prone to exaggeration, and more than happy to profit from it. Bending the truth and turning allies against each other will bring you success down the road.

Best Race Choice Paladin Build

Baldur's Gate 3 Half-Orc race example
Baldur's Gate 3 Tiefling race example

The Half-Orc is the best race choice for Oath of Vengeance Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3 because the Relentless Endurance racial feature can save you from death dropping to 0 hit points you stay at 1 for a turn.  The Half-Orc’s savage attack allows for extra damage and Darkvision is vital playing in the Underdark. A secondary choice is Zariel Tiefling because of fire resistance and two free smite spells, Searing and Branding.

Here’s the best Race choice for a Paladin Build:

Half-OrcZariel Tiefling
Relentless EnduranceHellish Resistance
MenacingSearing Smite
Darkvision (12m)Darkvision
Savage Attack Branding Smite
Best Oath of Vengeance Racial Choice

The Paladin’s racial choice will not influence ability score, but everyone should get a +2 and +1 to spend regardless. This frees your race choice up to not completely hinder yourself based on ability score, but race features. Each of these races offers unique advantages that can enhance your combat prowess, survivability, or utility. Additionally, consider the roleplaying opportunities and character concepts that resonate with you.

Paladin Skills - Baldur’s Gate 3
Baldur's Gate 3 Automatic Skill Checks
Automatic Skill Check Example

Athletics and Insight are the best skills for the Paladin Oath of Vengeance in Baldur’s Gate 3 because they complement your class abilities and enhance your effectiveness in various situations. In Baldur’s Gate 3, skills represent the abilities and proficiencies of your character that allow them to perform various actions and interact with the game world. Skills are associated with specific attributes and are used to determine the success or effectiveness of certain actions or abilities. They can be edited during character creation or with companions, during respec or reroll screen.

Here are the best skills for Paladin Oath of Vengeance in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  1. Athletics is a Strength skill
  2. Insight is a Wisdom skill

In Baldur’s Gate 3 each skill is related to a specific ability score and it’s effectiveness scales with the level of that score. You want to choose skills for your character that they already have a high ability score in. For example, if you want to have high Persuasion (which is used to influence dialogue choices), you need to have correspondingly high Charisma. Ideally, you want a party composition which includes a variety of high ability scores which can give you success in different skills.

For example, a primary Dexterity companion like Astarion can be the primary one to open locks with his Sleight of Hand ability. A primary Intelligence companion such as Gale can be used to investigate cursed objects or can take the lead in dialogue with Intelligence checks.The ideal configuration is to have one member with primary Dexterity, one primary Intelligence, one primary Charisma, and one primary Wisdom. This may not always work out, and may not be 100% necessary, depending on your own personal roleplay style, your preferred companions and how you like to play the game.

Best Paladin Ability Score

Best Paladin Ability Score - Baldur’s Gate 3
Paladin Ability Score

Below is the best ability score to unlock the full potential of a Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build:

Ability Points Goal
Intelligence 8

The Best Ability Score for the Paladin is high Strength of 16 and Charisma of 16 that way your melee abilities will do a lot of damage in combination with spells specifically Divine Smite. The next priority is Constitution to 14 so you have a larger enough health pool to survive. Hitting Strength and Charisma at 16 is critical for the optimal damage setup for the Paladin.

After you choose the class, subclass, race, and background, the game will automatically distribute your abilities in the character creation abilities tab. You will need to reprioritize the stats for the chart for an optimal Paladin build. Simply use the plus-minus in the character creator and make sure you have the suggested race, or the numbers will be off. If you don’t reach these numbers due to racial choice, drop your Wisdom lower.

Paladin Spell Slots

Below is a list and chart that shows the levels and spell slots unlocked for the Paladin class in Baldur’s Gate 3:

Paladin Level1st2nd3rd
Level 1 0
Level 2200
Level 3300
Level 4300
Level 5420
Level 6420
Level 7430
Level 8430
Level 9432
Level 10 432
Level 11433
Level 12433
Paladin Spell Slots Unlocked

Paladin Illithid Powers

BG3 Illithid Powers

Illithid Powers are unlocked later in the game when you learn more about the Mind Flayers and tadpoles.  You can gain jars of Mind Flayer Parasite Specimens, and consume them to gain one point.  This is essentially another skill tree advancement with some very strong powers.  If you decide to advance this skill line, these are the choices we suggest.

Here are the best Illithid Powers for the Paladin Build:

  • Luck of the Far Realms: When you make a successful Attack Roll against a foe, you can change that hit into a Critical Hit. This is a passive feature you can react to once you land your first attack.
  • Cull of the Weak: When you bring a creature down to fewer hit points than your number of evolved Illithid powers, it dies and all nearby creatures take 1-4 Psychic damage. This can provide massive area damage for free and can be toggled off.
  • Psionic Backlash: When an enemy within 9m casts a spell, you can use your reaction to inflict ld4 Psychic damage to the caster per the spell’s level. This is a passive and hard counter to casters near you.
  • Ability Drain: Once per turn, when you make an Attack Roll, the attack reduces that target’s corresponding Ability by 1. This is another useful passive that helps debuff enemies and doesn’t require action or bonus actions.
  • Repulsor: deal 2~12 Damage 1d6 force damage and Force Push anything and anyone back 6m. This is a great aoe knockback and does good damage early in the game.

Paladin Level Progression

Level 1

BG3 Vengeance Paladin Build

Level one follow our character creator to pick all correct background, race, skills, and ability distribution focusing on Strength and Charisma. You also can pick your subclass, and for this build, we want to select Vengeance. Level two will give you the bulk of your spells, in the early game just rely on weapon damage. Your goal is to find some heavy armor and a two-handed weapon. You can grab medium armor from Lae’zel in the introduction if you don’t plan on using her. Simply attack and level to two where things get interesting!

Here’s a breakdown of what you get as a level 1 Paladin:

  • Channeled Oath Charges: Paladin-specific resource that allows the casting of spells and abilities.
    • Usage: used for three oath skills, can be recovered via short rest.
  • Lay on Hands: Use your blessed touch to heal a creature or cure it of all diseases and poisons.
    • Usage: Single target melee heal using action or cure disease. This consumes Oath Charges but is an effective heal.
  • Divine Sense: Gain Advantage on Attack Rolls against celestials, fiends, and undead.
    • Usage: This uses bonus action which can be used with an attack costing an action.
  • Inquisitor’s Might: You or an ally’s weapon attacks deal an additional 2 Radiant damage and can Daze enemies for 1 turn.
    • Usage: This is a Channeled Oath skill that can add a bit of damage with a chance to stun which is helpful.
  • Oath of Vengeance Tenets: Fight the Greater Evil. Exerting your wisdom, identify the higher morality in any given instance, and fight for it. No Mercy for the Wicked. Chasten those who dole out their villainy by wiping their blight from the world forever.
    • Usage: this isn’t really a mechanic portion, just an oath you need to maintain. If you break the oath, you can unlock a new subclass, Oathbreaker.

Gameplay: at this level move along quickly to level 2 for spell unlocks. Use Lay on Hands for healing, Inquisitor’s Might for extra damage and swing your sword.

Level 2

At level two the Paladin gains access to five prepared spells, choose a fighting style, and Divine Smite. Here is a list of what to do as a level two Vengence Paladin:

Divine Smite: uses spell slot and hits in conjunction with weapon strike. Can be automatically applied, only during critical hits or have a popup box via the reactions menu. Be cautious at first about using this too often. You will burn through your spell slots quickly at this low level, and either have to rest or just use melee attacks only.

Gain access to five prepared spells. Suggested Prepared Spells:

  • Searing Smite: Your Weapon deals an extra 1d6 Fire damage and marks the target with Searing Smite. A target with Searing Smite takes 1d6 Fire damage every turn until it succeeds on a Constitution saving throw.
    • Usage: this is your hard-hitting single-target spell that also gives a damage-over-time fire effect. Consider this a good option if you cannot one-shot an opponent and don’t need to Crowd Control them.
  • Thunderous Smite: Your weapon rings with thunder as you strike, pushing your target 3m away and possibly knocking it Prone.
    • Usage: This attack can act like Crowd Control when you need a stun. You want to use this when needing a stun on a hard-hitting enemy.
  • Shield of Faith: Surround a creature with a shimmering field of magic that increases its Armour Class by 2.
    • Usage: This uses a bonus action and requires concentration and should be used prior to fights where you expect to take the majority of the damage.
  • Divine Favor: Your prayer empowers you with divine radiance. Your weapon attacks deal an additional 1d4 Radiant Damage.
    • Usage: this spell is great because it consumes a bonus action, not an action. This also gives you additional Radiant Damage, which you can pair with Divine Smite for huge damage early in the game.  Concentration is required with this spell.
  • Cure Wounds: Touch a creature to heal it.
    • Usage: decent melee-based heal that consumes an action and spell slot. Early in the game, not having healing or potions spells doom, and depending on group composition, this spell can be flexed in or out.

Great Weapon Fighting: passive feature when you roll a 1 or 2 on a damage die for an attack with a Two-Handed melee weapon, that die is rerolled once.  This minimizes low-damage rolls and keeps your damage high especially using a Two-Handed weapon like a Greatsword.

Gameplay: with all of these spells, it’s important to not use them liberally. Divine Smite can proc (consuming an extra spell slot) and deliver extra damage in COMBINATION with Searing Smite. So if you Critical Strike with Searing Smite, you can use the reaction Divine Smite for additional damage. This will consume two spell slots, but deal a lot of damage. Early in the game, this is an issue due to the lack of spell slots. So be careful, don’t waste these spell slots on a target with 8 health, just melee attack them.

Additionally, the Paladin makes great use of their bonus action early in the game. Using Shield of Faith or Divine Favor prior to a fight can be helpful. Shield of Faith can be helpful to allies as well. Use healing sparingly, you should be focused on damage and bring a support class along for healing and buffs.

Paladin level 2 Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds.

Level 3

BG3 level 3 Paladin Spells
Level 3 Progression

Level three the Vengence Paladin will unlock another level 1 spell slot, Divine Health, and subclass features. Here’s a list of what happens as a level 3 Paladin:

  • Gain another level 1 spell slot up to three.
  • Gain one more prepared spell.
  • Gain Divine Health: prevents the disease from affecting you (passive benefit).
  • Abjure Enemy: Fighten an enemy. They’ll be easier to hit and cannot move. Fiends and undead have Disadvantage on this Saving Throw.
    • Usage: subclass skill that can be helpful when enemies are likely to move away, should be Fiends and Undead right click examine if unsure.
  • Vow of Enmity: Gain Advantage on Attack Rolls against an enemy.
    • Usage: Advantage gives two D20 rather than one, likely increasing your damage significantly, but there’s usually better offensives buffs.
  • Receives Bane: Up to 3 creatures receive a -1d4 penalty to Attack Rolls and Saving Throws.
    • Usage: used sparingly as a Paladin, multiple target deuff that makes enemies more likely to miss. You receive this from your subclass, and do not need to prepare it.
  • Receives Hunter’s Mark: Mark a creature as your quarry to deal an additional 1d6 Slashing Damage whenever you hit it with a weapon attack. If the target dies before the spell ends, you can mark a new creature without expanding a Spell Slot.
    • Usage: great debuff spell single target and you can reapply after a kill for free with a bonus action. Worthwhile to cast or Divine Favor as a bonus action offensive tool.

For prepared spells you have two choices, either Bless or Command.

  • Command: Command a creature to flee, move closer, freeze, drop to the ground or drop their weapon.
    • This is your crowd control ability that can be used at ranged. My favorite is prone, taking away action and bonus action from a hard-hitting enemy. Take this if you have another support character with you.

Gameplay: you now have a lot of versatility in spells, skills and actions. The premise here is to use bonus action and actions effectively per turn. At this level, I rarely use Thunderous or Searing Smite. It consumes both action and bonus action which is very costly. The first turn, I usually buff with Divine Favour or Shield of Faith, then attack in melee. The following turn, I make a decision on priority. If we need a stun, Command is a great option. If I just have to kill a target, I’ll use my spell slots for Searing Smite. If we need high damage and a single target stun, Thunderous Smite. Generally, I melee attack and try to use Hunter’s Mark as my bonus action if my concentration spell falls off (Divine Favour or Shield of Faith).

Even at level 3, the Paladin can be complex. Buff turn one, and use burst damage turn two. Turn three and evaluate what your group needs, crowd control, burst, healing, etc. Rinse and repeat that model until later in the game. It will get easier and more effective as you unlock spell slots. Also, check if you have a bonus action spent before ending your turn. If not, Hunter’s Mark, Divine Favour, or Shield of Faith can be vital if you have spell slots.

Paladin level 3 Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command.

Level 4

BG3 Paladin Strength 18

Level four gives you a very important decision between increasing your ability score like Strength or taking a featFeats give you a big benefit but doing so will have you miss out on Ability Improvements. Simply increasing your main stat strength to 18 is the simplest and easiest way to advance your character. You can do this by selecting ability improvement than +2 to strength.

At level 8 we will take Great Weapon Master and at level 12 (max level in Baldur’s Gate 3) we will take another +2 to strength. This will keep our build simple at the moment, and hitting hard with a better percentage chance with a melee weapon.

You get one additional spell to slot and I recommend Protection from Evil and Good.

  • Protection from Evil and Good: Protect an ally against the attacks and powers of aberrations, celestials, elementals, fey, fiends, and undead. The target can’t be Charmed, Frightened, or possessed by them, and when these creatures attack it, they do so with a disadvantage.
    • Usage: this is a niche spell for this build and is not used often. It comes in handy in particular fights where your character is crowd controlled on turn one and does nothing but sit there charmed. Otherwise, take another skill you find more appealing and consider this a flex.

Gameplay: remains unchanged at this level. Expect more damage and better chances to land an attack. Keep leveling to get more spells and more spell slots.

Level 4 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good.

Level 5

At level 5, the Paladin and Oath of Vengeance subclass unlocks a lot. Extra attack, more spell slots and two subclass spells. Here’s a list of what to expect as a level 5 Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  • Level 1 Spell Slot Unlocked
  • Level 2 Spell Slot Unlocked
  • 1 Extra Prepared Spell (take Branding Smite)
  • Extra Attack: Beginning at level, you can attack twice, by the Attack action on your turn.  This combined with Divine Smite and the added spell slots allows you to mega single target damage pure turn.
  • Subclass Spells:
    • Hold Person: (Subclass Feature)(Hold a humanoid enemy still. They can’t move, act or react. Attacks from within 3m are always Critical Hits. 10 Turns)
    • Misty Step: (Subclass Feature)(Surrounded by silver mist, you teleport to an unoccupied space you can see.)


  • Branding Smite: deals 2d6 radiant damage and Possibly marks your target with light, preventing it from turning Invisible.
    • Usage: another hard-hitting Smite with 2d6 radiant this makes it perfect against specific targets. Don’t sleep on the preventing from turning invisible. Beyond level 5, there are many enemies, and bosses that will attempt to slip away invisible with a potion or a spell. Shut them down with this smite.

Gameplay: level 5 unlocks a lot of offensive and defensive potential for the Paladin. Extra Attack gives you two attacks in one with a chance to proc Divine Smite on each. You can also combo this with a Potion of Speed or the Haste spell for two actions per turn. Your bonus action can be used for debuffs, and at level 8, another attack. You have two free spells courtesy of the Vengence subclass. The best is Misty Step. The strength is this spell gives you great mobility and only uses bonus action. Now you can close the gap, charge in and have crazy mobility alongside huge single-target damage.

At this level and beyond, you should feel very powerful. You can buff and debuff with a bonus action, mobility with Misty Step, and huge damage for the scenario or enemy using Smite. The issue with the build at this point is spell slots and using your big damage Divine Smite reaction appropriately. You will also need to long rest constantly. Do not go off wandering into the unknown without your spell slots full.

Level 5 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite.

Level 6

BG3 Level 6 Paladin
BG3 Paladin Level 6 Spells

At level 6 the Paladin unlocks 1 more prepared spell bringing the total to 9.  You also get Aura of Protection.

  • Aura of Protection: You and nearby allies gain a bonus to Saving Throws equal to your Charisma modifier.


  • Magic Weapon: Infuse a weapon with arcane energy. The weapon becomes magical, receiving a +1 bonus to Attack and Damage Rolls.
    • Usage: this is a decent buff to damage, but it comes at the cost of a high-level spell slot and concentration. Another decent spell to add to our arsenal.

Once you unlock Aura of Protection you need to activate it for its effect. Gameplay not much changes at this level.

Level 6 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite, Magic Weapon.

Level 7

BG3 Paladin Level 7 Spells

Level 7 Paladin Unlocks:

  • Relentless Avenger: (Subclass Feature)(If you hit an enemy with an Opportunity Attack, your movement speed increases by 4.5m on your next turn.)
  • Additional Level 2 spell slot.


  • Lesser Restoration: Cure a creature from disease, poison, paralysis, or blindness.
    • Usage: used in rare circumstances, but when an ally is critically paralyzed and you need them to be able to take a turn.

Gameplay: not much changes and we are about to level 8 for a BIG boost in power with one of my favorite feats in the game.

Level 7 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite, Magic Weapon, Lessor Restoration.

Level 8

BG3 Great Weapon Master
Baldur's Gate 3 Great Weapon Master All In Toggle
Baldur’s Gate 3 Great Weapon Master All In Toggle

At level 8 the Paladin gets to pick a Feat or Ability Improvement, we suggest taking Great Weapon Master.

Great Weapon Master feat which does the following: When a melee attack scores a critical hit or kills a creature, you can make another melee attack as a bonus action. When attacking with Heavy Weapons you are proficient with, attack rolls take a -5 penalty, but their damage increases by 10.

The Great Weapon Master feat does two things for you. One, it has a high-risk high reward ability to add 10 damage BUT -5 attack roll penalty. As shown in the picture above, this simply reduces your percentage chance to hit significantly. You can turn this off in the Passive section on your toolbar, which will give you the normal percentage.

Secondly, this feat gives you another chance to hit on a kill or critical hit using a bonus action. This is the real reason the feat is so strong, multiple attacks in a turn, and with this build, you will be getting a lot of critical hits and kills. Combat should therefore be initiated using your action first, saving your bonus action for a Great Weapons Master attack.

  • Compelled Duel: Compel an enemy to attack only you. It cannot attack other creatures.
    • Usage: another niche spell that can help you soak damage if other allies are low. Consider this a flex skill.

Gameplay: at level 8 you now have the god-tier Great Weapon Master and enough Strength to take advantage of it. Here’s how you want your turn to go after you are buffed:

  • Action One Attack (proc Divine Smite) goal kill target or critical strike
  • Action Two Attack (proc Divine Smite) goal kill target or critical strike
  • Proc Great Weapon Master from kill or critical hit, then use bonus action for another attack (proc Divine Smite).

That is a lot of attacks without using a specific Smite because the bonus action can proc Great Weapon Master. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use Branding, Thunderous, or Searing Smite, it’s just now you have options considering your bonus action is so valuable.

You can take this a step further by using a Potion of Speed or have someone cast Haste on you. This will give you an additional action, two more attacks and possibly two more divine strikes. In one turn, if things go well, the Paladin is an absolute force with this setup. Buff with bonus action on the first turn, and use primary melee attacks on the second with the goal of proc Great Weapon Master. Use your Smites and spell slots when you need a big damage attack. Heal rarely, and Misty Step for mobility.

Level 8 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite, Magic Weapon, Lessor Restoration.

Levels 9

BG3 Oath of the Ancients Level 9 Spells
BG3 Vengeance Paladin Level 9

The level 9 Oath of the Vengence Paladin unlocks 2 Level 3 Spell Slots and two subclass-specific spells.

Haste (subclass spell): Target yourself or an ally to become Hastened. The creature has a +2 bonus to Armour Class, Advantage on Dexterity Saving Throws, its Movement Speed is doubled, and can take one additional Action per turn. When the condition ends, the creature becomes Lethargic. This is one of the best spells in the game because it increases actions.  The downside of the Paladin using it, it takes an action and a much-needed level 3 spell slot.  I prefer to use Potion of Speed which gives the same effect for fewer turns.

Protection from Energy (subclass spell): Most of our level 3 spells will be used for Smite, or Elemental Weapon, but this can save your life in very specific fights with heavy single focus elements. Otherwise, consider this a utility skill.

Blinding Smite: +3d8 radiant damage and possibly Blind your target. This spell is your big nuke using Smite along with Blind it makes it a must-have and our primary usage of level 3 spells.

Elemental Weapon: Imbue a weapon with elemental power. It receives a +1 bonus to Attack Rolls, and deals an additional 1d4 damage of your choice. Consider this an enhanced Divine Favour adding +1 to attack rolls as well. The downside is it cost an action and a level 3 spell slot. However, if you can pre-buff using this before a fight expect even more damage.

Gameplay: At this level you have even more in your arsenal.  Most of the added spells will be used in niche situations. Your bread and butter remains the same, Smite damage. With Blinding Smite you have a hard counter against fellow martial weapon users. Giving the Blind debuff alongside 3d8 radiant damage is massive. Keep things simple and use your off-healing, crowd control and utility only when needed.

Note on prepared spells, make sure to drop Compelled Duel so you can pick up two level 3 spells.

Level 9 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite, Magic Weapon, Lessor Restoration, Blinding Smite, Elemental Weapon.

Levels 10

BG3 Level 10 Paladin Oath of the Ancients Spells
BG3 Level 10 Paladin

The level 10 the Paladin unlocks the following in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  • Lay on Hands Charge
  • Aura of Courage: You and any nearby allies can’t be Frightened. The aura disappears if you fall Unconscious.
  • 1 Spell (take Revivify)
  • Revivify: Revive a companion. They return to life with 1 hit point.
    • Usage: typically you can throw potions or use the help function but this can be useful for long range to bring someone back.

Gameplay remains unchanged at this level with more utility.

Level 10 Paladin Prepared Spells: Searing Smite, Thunderous Smite, Shield of Faith, Divine Favour, Cure Wounds, Command, Protection from Evil and Good, Branding Smite, Magic Weapon, Lessor Restoration, Blinding Smite, Elemental Weapon, Revive.

Level 11

BG3 Paladin Level 11 - Baldur's Gate 3

At level 11 the Paladin doesn’t get much beyond an extra spell and another level 3 spell slot.  I recommend spending the last two levels multi-classing this class.  Investing two levels into Fighter will give you a passive +1 Armour Class (AC) for using armor and a god-tier skill, action surge.  If you want to stick with Paladin, you can choose another spell at this level and at level 12 pick +2 strength feat. However, I suggest taking two levels into Fighter to increase your action potential, which increases your damage significantly.

Having 20 strength with another ability improvement is great. However, you get even more with potions of Hill Giant, 21 and 27 depending on the usage.  I typically do not recommend mulit-classing, but the Paladin can really benefit from another action once per fight.

  • Defence Fighting Style: While you are wearing armor, you gain a +1 bonus to AC.  This is a passive benefit at level 1 Fighter and will help with survival. 
  • Second Wind: this skill is unlocked at level one Fighter and is a mediocre heal that is useful during the start of the game.  You can use a bonus action, though most potions outperform it.

If you multi-class, this level will feel uneventful, but trust me it’ll be worth it.  Prepared Spells remain unchanged from here on out. 

Level 12

BG3 Level 12 Paladin - Baldur's Gate 3

With two levels into Fighter, you get access to the awe-inspiring Action Surge. You get an extra action, but the biggest strength is, it doesn’t require any resource to use it. Action Surge is a once-per-fight usage, but it allows you to cast another spell, attack, dash, etc. It gives you that extra oomph that no other class has.

You take your Paladin with Extra Attack and give it Action Surge for 2x more attacks. You can take this a step further by using either a Potion of Haste or casting Haste on yourself. Then you get another action! If you did the math on that:

  • Attack one + extra attack = 2
  • Attack two (via Action Surge) + extra attack = 4
  • Attack three (via Haste) + extra attack = 6
  • Great Weapon Master via critical strike or kill = 7 (if you have a bonus action)

The Paladin at level 12 with this setup has so much firepower it’s remarkable. Again, if you wanted a traditional Paladin for all 12 levels, take ability improvement +2 strength or the Alert feat which helps with going early. We hope you enjoyed this build and check out the gear section for more.

Best Companions for Paladin Oath of Vengeance in Baldur’s Gate 3

Companions for the Best Paladin Build, we recommend range and support characters. The idea is, your character charges in melee range with support, range damage, or even stealth attacks.  If you have multiple melee characters, 2-3, it can be troublesome in close-quarters combat. 

When putting your party together, consider companions for not only their combat prowess but also their outside ability and skills that can influence storytelling, dialogue, and exploration. A balanced party will fit the traditional RPG ‘holy trinity’: Tank, Healer, and DPS. Ideally, in Baldur’s Gate 3 you’re are going to want one tank, one healer, one melee DPS, and one range DPS. Some classes/subclasses can cover both roles, so feel free to experiment and find out what works best for you.

Best Gear for Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build

Beginner: Starting the Game

Baldur's Gate 3 Everburn Blade
Adamantine Splint Armour - Baldur’s Gate 3
Baldur's Gate 3 Amulet of Restoration with healing spells

Here’s the best beginner gear for Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build in Baldur’s Gate 3:

Gear SlotBest Gear Item
HeadGrymskull Helm
ChestAdamantine Splint Armour
GlovesGloves of the Growling Underdog
BootsBoots of Speed
NecklaceAmulet of Restoration
RingCrusher’s Ring
RingRing of Psionic Protection
Weapon 1 Main HandEverburn Blade
Weapon 2 Main HandGithyanki Crossbow
  • Grymskull Helm: Grants Resistance to Fire Damage. Attackers can’t land critical hits on the wearer. Grants Hunter’s Mark. Heavy Amour
    • Defeate Grym, a construct boss at Level 8 in The Adamantine Forge (X:-558 Y:233), Grymforge
  • Adamantine Splint Armour: All incoming damage is reduced by 2. When a melee attack hits you, the attacker is sent Reeling for 3 turns. No AC Bonus from Dexterity. Disadvantage on Stealth rolls. Attackers can’t land Critical Hits on the wearer.)
    • Can be crafted at Grymforge, after defeating Grym golem during the Adamantine Forge Quest. (X: -593 Y: 309) & (X:-558 Y:233)
  • Gloves of the Growling Underdog: The wearer gains an Advantage on melee attack rolls while surrounded by 2 or more foes.
    Strength Saving Throws +1
    • Chest behind Razglin’s throne room. (X295 Y69)
  • Boots of Speed: Allows the wearer to Dash as a bonus action
    • Give an antidote to Thulla in Myconid Colony.
  • Amulet of Restoration: Gain – Healing Word: Cast Healing Word once per Long Rest. Mass Healing Word: Cast Mass Healing Word once per Long Rest.
    • You can buy it from Derryth Bonecloak at Myconid colony in the Underdark
  • Ring of Psionic Protection: Wearer cannot be charmed
    • Can be a quest reward from Omeluum or you can simply buy it from him, Myconid Colony in the Underdark
  • Everburn Blade: + 1D4 Fire
    • Can be looted from Commander Zhalk during the prologue
  • Githyanki Crossbow
    • Can be looted from Getyanki warriors near the path to Mountain Pass on the northwest side of the map.

Advanced: End-Game

BG3 Balduran's Giantslayer
Baldur's Gate 3 Helldusk Armor
BG3 Killer's Sweetheart

The following table presents the best advanced and end-game gear for Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build in Baldur’s Gate 3:

Gear SlotBest Gear Item
HeadHelm of Balduran
CapeVivacious Cloak
ChestHelldusk Armour
GlovesGauntlets of Hill Giant Strength
BootsHelldusk Boots
NecklaceAmulet of Greater Health
RingKiller’s Sweetheart
RingRing Of Regeneration
Weapon 1 Main HandBalduran’s Giantslayer
Weapon 2 Main Hand
    • Helm of Balduran: The helmet heals you 2 hit points at the beginning of every turn; You have a + 1 bonus to Armor Class and Saving Throws; You can’t be Stunned. Attackers can’t land Critical Hits on the wearer.
      • Dropped by Ansur after solving the puzzles in the Wyrmway
    • Vivacious Cloak: You gain 7 temporary hit points after casting a spell while in melee.
      • Can be found in a chest at the Grand Mausoleum (X-260, Y-881)
    • Helldusk Armour: You’re considered Proficient with this armor while wearing it; When you succeed Saving Throw, the caster receives Burning for 3 rounds; You have resistance for Fire Damage and cannot be Burned. You take 3 less damage from All sources.
      • Dropped by Raphael in the House of Hope
    • Gauntlets of Hill Giant Strength: Strength Saving Throw +1; Increases the wearer’s Strength to 23
      • Can be looted from the Archive at the House of Hope.
    • Helldusk Boots: Steadfast: You cannot be forcibly moved by a foe’s spells or actions, and you ignore the effects of Difficult Terrain. Infernal Evasion: When you fail a Saving Throw, you may use your reaction to succeed instead. Hellcrawler: Teleport to an area and deal 2d8 Fire damage where you land. The impact blast spreads in a 3m / 10ft zone.
      • Found in a locked Gilded Chest on the top floor of Wyrm’s Rock Fortress
    • Amulet of Greater Health: Increases the wearer’s Constitution score to 23, Advantage on Constitution Saving Throws Checks.
      • Can be found in the House of Hope
    • Killer’s Sweetheart: When you kill a creature, your next Attack Roll will be a Critical Hit. Once spent, this effect refreshes after a Long Rest.
      • From the Self-Same Trial in the Gauntlet of Shar in Act 2
    • Ring Of Regeneration: At the beginning of your turn, the ring activates to heal you 1d4 Hit Points.
      • Sold by Rolan at Sorcerous Sundries
    • Balduran’s Giantslayer: On a hit, double the damage from your Strength Modifier. This weapon grants you Advantage on Attack Rolls against Large, Huge, or Gargantuan creatures. Weapon Enchantment +3. Giant Form (Class Actions)
      • The reward for completing the Wyrmway trials in Act 3.

Best Paladin Consumables, Potions, and Items

Baldur's Gate 3 Potion of Speed
Smokepowered Bomb
Baldur's Gate 3 Potion of Greater Healing

The following list represents the best individual use consumable items that will aid in our Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build:

  • Potion of Speed: Gain extra action, +2 Armour Class, Advantage on Dexterity Saving Throws, and double movement speed making it the best consumable in the game.
  • Elixir of Hill Giant Strength: Increases strength to 21 until long rest.
  • Smokepowder Bomb: Throw bomb 18m with a 4m radius dealing 3d4+9 Force damage dealing a massive amount of area damage.
  • Arrow of Fire:  Deals +1D4 fire damage and create a fire surface for extra area damage.
  • Greater Healing Potion: use a bonus action to self-heal for 4D4+ 4 HP.
  • Basic Poison: Use a bonus action to coat a weapon with poison.
  • Feather Fall Scroll: Become immune to falling damage which helps to enter Underdark.
  • Alchemist Fire: Throwable single target dealing 1d4 Fire damage per to turn to creature hit

Paladin Combat, Gameplay, and Tips

Here are 10 gameplay tips specifically for playing a Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  1. Spell Slots: use your spell slots wisely, especially for Divine Smite and Healing
  2. Divine Smite: use this extra damage source on the hardest to defeat enemies and save your spell slots for when you really need it.
  3. Healing: use potions that consume bonus actions or Lay on Hands for yourself or an ally.
  4. Heavy Armor: find and equip this early for needed AC.
  5. Crowd Control: make sure to CC enemies with Thunderous Smite or a Companion ability to limit damage.
  6. Pre-Buff: have a companion cast blessed prior to combat to get a roll Advantage.
  7. Range: don’t forget to equip a ranged weapon to ensure you can do damage on nearly every turn.
  8. Long Rest: use the rest at camp function to regain spell slots and don’t go into a fight with zero.
  9. Great Weapon Master: focus on low health targets with your first action to strike a kill and another attack with Great Weapon Master.
  10. Toggle Reactions: make sure both Divine Smite and Great Weapon Master are toggled on or off when you need them.

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build uses the best combination of melee, single target damage, healing, and crowd control to survive and fight. You will need to initiate combat, use consumables to replenish health and rely on companions for what your classes don’t have available.  Here’s a list of some general tips for Paladin Builds:

Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build Summary Guide


  • Divine Smite
  • Abjure Enemy
  • Oath Charges


  • Oath of Vengeance


Best Companions


Abilities Distribution

  • Strength: 16
  • Dexterity: 10
  • Constitution: 14
  • Intelligence: 8
  • Wisdom: 10
  • Charisma: 16

Skills with Proficiency

Looking for more Baldur’s Gate 3?

Thank you for reading the Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Oath of Vengeance Build Guide page. We provide the latest news and create guides for the BG 3. Additionally, check out our website, watch me play games on Twitch, or visit my YouTube channel!