Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide
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Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide – In this Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide, I’m going to cover my Ranger Build, and show you what I’ve found to work best. I’ll be doing more Build Guides at the launch of Baldur’s Gate 3, but for now, let’s look at how you can use a Hunter Ranger effectively.

Be sure to check out our other Baldur’s Gate 3 Builds including: Circle of the Land Druid, Circle of the Moon Druid, Wild Magic Sorcerer, Wildheart Barbarian, Draconic Sorcerer, Berserker Barbarian, College of Lore Bard, College of Valour Bard, Oath of Devotion Paladin, Oath of the Ancients Paladin, Oathbreaker Paladin!

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Builds Features

  • Abilities: Dexterity, Wisdom
  • Subclasses: Hunter & Beast Master
  • Unique Feature: Ranged Combat
  • Hit Die: +10 HP + CON Modifier

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide

The Hunter Ranger is a powerhouse of a Subclass that can be compared to other Martial Classes like the Barbarian and Fighter in terms of the overall damage they deal. Not only do they have Spells to restrain targets, but they also have the ability to mark them in order to inflict damage over time. However, it doesn’t end there since at Level 5, these Rangers can execute an Extra Attack, allowing them to eliminate threatening enemies in a few, if not a single round.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger in Combat

Because of how simple they are to play, the Hunter Ranger is considered one of the best beginner Classes in the game. On top of their damage potential, they have decent AC since they can equip Medium Armor. What’s more, is that they’re optimally positioned outside of harm’s way to shoot arrows safely from a distance.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Character Creation

In this section, we’ll take a look at how to set up your Ranger during Character Creation for the best results.


For Background, choosing one that provides you with Dexterity Skills should be enough since this is your primary Ability to hit and damage enemies, alongside Wisdom. Dexterity has Acrobatics, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth. Some Background examples are Charlatan, Entertainer, and Urchin.


For Race, if you’re not taking an Origin Character, then I recommend selecting the Wood Elf. The Wood Elf has Darkvision and Fey Ancestry. Darkvision helps them see and attack better in the dark, and finally, Fey Ancestry makes it so that they have a Saving Throw Advantage against the effects of Charmed and Sleep. All of these qualities make them the clear favorite for a Ranger. The reason why I’m not highlighting Longbow Proficiency is due to the Martial Weapon Proficiency of this Class. This means that they’ll be able to wield Longbows to further increase their Ranged Weapon Damage.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide

Alternatively, you can choose the Strongheart Halfling since they gain Lucky, allowing them to make another Attack Roll when they roll a natural 1. They even have Poison Resistance due to Strongheart Resilience.


For Skills again it’s not super important, but you’ll have high Dexterity and Wisdom, so selecting Skills that fall under these Abilities is ideal. Wisdom has Animal Handling, Insight, Medicine, Perception, and Survival, and I’ve already listed what Dexterity Skills there are.


The primary Abilities that are needed for this Build are Dexterity since you’re going to focus on Bow combat, followed by Wisdom and Constitution. Wisdom is needed to land some Spells while Constitution increases HP and helps to maintain Concentration. Your Ability Spread should look something like this:

Hunter Ranger Ability Spread

Favored Enemy

Out of all the Favored Enemies, the best one is Bounty Hunter because it imposes a Disadvantage on targets attacked using Ensnaring Strike, specifically when it comes to their Saving Throws and Attack Rolls. What’s more, is that you and your allies gain an Advantage on Attack Rolls against them. As a result, they won’t be as effective in combat. Furthermore, the Cantrips featured in other Favored Enemies such as Sacred Flame aren’t that good.

Ranger's Bounty Hunter

Natural Explorer

For Natural Explorer, I suggest taking Beast Tamer so you can summon a Familiar that can assist you in combat. Just remember to summon them before the start of every encounter since you can’t do so once you’ve engaged enemies.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 2

Fighting Style

At Level 2, you get to choose a powerful passive. For this Build, I suggest taking Archery to gain +2 Attack Rolls with Ranged Weapons. This will equate to a total of +7 to your Attack Rolls and +8 at Level 4 by taking into account your +2 Proficiency, +2 Archery bonus, and Dexterity Modifier.

Spells and Concentration

You also gain 2 Level 1 Spells and 2 Spell Slots. Here, you should take Ensnaring Strike and Hunter’s Mark. Ensnaring Strike allows you to restrain a target, thereby dealing 1-6 Piercing Damage after every turn if they fail their Strength Saving Throw in addition to the 4-9 Piercing Damage they initially receive. Meanwhile, Hunter’s Mark lets you deal 1-6 Slashing Damage against the marked creature every time you shoot them with your arrows. As long as the hunt is completed, which means you’ve slayed the same marked enemy, this Spell will stay with you until you take a Long Rest so you can keep applying it in the next encounters as a Bonus Action instead of spending a Spell Slot.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide - Ensnaring Strike in Combat

It’s also worth noting that both Spells require Concentration to remain active. Concentration is broken if you cast another Cantrip or Spell that also requires Concentration. You can tell which these are because it will say so on the Spell itself. For example, if you cast Ensnaring Strike, but then you cast Hunter’s Mark, you would stop “Concentrating” on Ensnaring Strike and begin Concentrating on Hunter’s Mark.

Ensnaring Strike Spell with Concentration

Moreover, if you take damage while Concentrating on a Spell, 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, you maintain your Concentration and the Spell continues. This is why it’s vital for Rangers to have average to high Constitution because of the Spells that require this Ability and is wasted if it’s constantly broken.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 3

Hunter’s Prey

At Level 3, you’ll be selecting the Hunter Subclass. As a Hunter, you get to choose between 1 of 3 Hunter’s Prey. Here, you’re going to take Colossus Slayer for the increased 1-8 Damage with every Weapon attack you do. This passive is especially potent against stronger enemies. But remember to reduce their HP beforehand to trigger its effect. Because of this, Colossus Slayer isn’t as useful against enemies you can one-shot so it’ll just be a waste.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide - Colossus Slayer at Level 3

Note that Hunter’s Mark and Colossus Slayer stack so you must use them together. It’s just that they each have different Damage Roll formulas but use the same Attack Rolls.

Spells and Replacement Spell

Additionally, you’ll be able to choose a third Ranger Spell. Here, I recommend taking Hail of Thorns or Cure Wounds. Hail of Thorns is really powerful. Should the target fail their Dexterity Saving Throw, they get the entire 5-19 Piercing Damage from the Spell’s thorns and its subsequent explosion. If they succeed, they still get 4-9 Thorn Piercing Damage plus half of the explosion damage at 1d10 divided by 2. Just remember that Hail of Thorns cannot be cast against an inanimate entity like the Intellect Devourer.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide - Hail of Thorns Spell in Combat

If you’re not running with a Cleric in your party, you may want to take Cure Wounds to be able to heal yourself or an ally you can touch. Because of your +3 Wisdom Modifier, you can effectively heal more HP than expected.

Furthermore, you’ll be able to unlearn and learn old and new Spells, respectively, via the Replacement Spell, similar to the Warlock. Unlearning a Spell lets you select what you wish to remove from your list. As a replacement, you’ll get to pick one Spell when you level up. But if you want to keep your current list, you can simply ignore this feature and continue to learn new Spells. In this Hunter Ranger Build Guide, we won’t be unlearning any Spells since the ones we’ve chosen are essential in combat.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 4

At Level 4, you’ll gain 2 Ability points to place into Dexterity, bringing it to 18 and your corresponding Modifier to +4. This will not only increase the likelihood of you connecting your attacks but also increase your damage by +1.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 5

At Level 5, you gain Extra Attack, which lets you make another attack using your Ranged Weapon and Spells that deal Weapon Damage, allowing you to obliterate powerful enemies.

You also get to choose 1 Level 2 Spell. I suggest taking Spike Growth or Lesser Restoration.

Spike Growth Spell LogoSpike Growth allows you to control a large space of the battlefield with thorns that slow creatures down and damage them if they try to move through it. This is an excellent way to keep enemy melee units from getting to your allies and can be invaluable when you’re outnumbered.

Lesser Restoration Spell LogoLesser Restoration lets you cure allies of diseases and conditions by touching them. It doesn’t require Concentration, only a single Action.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 6

At Level 6, the Ranger is able to choose one more Favored Enemy with its own language together with a Favored Terrain. For the Favored Enemy, you can go ahead and pick Mage Breaker. This makes it so that you become proficient in Arcana and that you’re able to cast the True Strike Cantrip. True Strike, which requires Concentration, grants an Advantage on your next Attack Roll. The good thing about it is this can be cast from afar.

For Favored Terrain, you can pick any Wasteland Wanderer you want to gain resistance to Cold, Fire, or Poison Damage, whichever damage types you encounter frequently.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Level 7

At Level 7, the Hunter Ranger gains access to Defensive Tactics in which they’ll be able to choose from three features: Escape the Horde, Multiattack Defense, and Steel Will. Escape the Horde imposes a Disadvantage on Attacks of Opportunity made against you, which is quite rare given that you’ll be positioned far away from the Melee Range. Conversely, Steel Will grants you a Saving Throw Advantage against being Frightened.

So out of all of these, I highly recommend taking Multiattack Defense, especially when you’re facing a boss. This makes it so that when a strong enemy attacks you, you gain +4 AC against their succeeding attacks for the rest of the encounter, allowing you to survive much longer in combat.

BG3 Ranger Level 8

At Level 8, the Ranger can choose a Feat. Here, I suggest going for Ability Improvement to raise Dexterity to 20 or Sharpshooter. Sharpshooter not only removes any Disadvantage you may incur as a result of making Ranged Weapon Attack Rolls but it also gives you the option to take a -5 Attack Roll penalty in place of boosting your attack’s damage by +10! This is huge and it functions similarly to the Great Weapon Master Feat. You’ll likely be successful since you now have the True Strike Cantrip to grant Advantage on your Attack Rolls.

Additionally, you gain access to Land’s Stride, which allows them to easily traverse nonmagical difficult terrain and plants without incurring conditions like Slow. Furthermore, they gain a Saving Throw Advantage against magical plants that reduce the effectiveness of their Movement Speed.

BG3 Ranger Level 10

At Level 10, you can select another Favored Terrain and blend in with nature thanks to the Hide in Plain Sight Feat. Hide in Plain Sight makes it so that you’re able to camouflage yourself by making use of mud and dirt near you. This is handy when you’re waiting for enemies to walk toward you before catching them by surprise. When you’re pressed against a tree or wall without moving, you gain +10 Stealth Checks.

BG3 Ranger Levels 11 & 12

At Level 11, the Hunter Ranger will be able to choose from two Multiattack features: Whirlwind Attack or Volley. Whirlwind Attack is particularly powerful since you can attack multiple creatures within 5 feet of you, each with different Attack Rolls. However, because you should be near them, I wouldn’t recommend it. You’re better off with Volley as it suits this Hunter Ranger Build much better. Volley makes it so that you can execute a Ranged Attack against several targets within 10 feet of you while once again, having one Attack Roll for each of them.

And finally, at Level 12, you can pick the Feat you didn’t choose at Level 8.


For this Hunter Ranger Build, you’ll primarily be wielding a Ranged Weapon such as The Joltshooter or Longbow +1. The Joltshooter not only lets you deal 5-12 Piercing Damage but also grants Lightning Charges upon dealing damage. This gives a +1 Attack Roll bonus together with +1 Lightning Damage. You can obtain this Weapon by doing the Rescue the Grand Duke Quest.

The Joltshooter

Comparatively, the Longbow +1 deals greater damage at 6-13. Note that both Ranged Weapons have Brace (Ranged). What this Weapon Action does is it grants an Advantage to your Damage Rolls to further improve your chances of dealing greater damage. The only caveat is you can’t move when you use Brace so you have to position yourself optimally right from the start.

For Medium Armor, you can go for Lae’zel’s Githyanki Half Plate or Scale Mail +1 to accommodate +2 of your Dexterity Modifier, giving you a total of 17 AC but you gain a Disadvantage on Stealth Rolls.

When it comes to Accessories, you’ll be equipping the Boots of Striding and Absolute’s Talisman. Boots of Striding is very beneficial to this Build since you have a lot of Spells that require Concentration. Your Movement Speed increases by 3m and you can’t be pushed back or knocked Prone.

Boots of Striding

Next is the Absolute’s Talisman, which will heal your HP by 1-8 after dealing damage. Both items can be found in the Shattered Sanctum. And finally, there’s the Amulet of Misty Step that’s nice to have. With this amulet from the Underdark, you gain access to the Misty Step Spell to help you teleport from one location to the other, thereby potentially granting you the +2 High Ground bonus for your Attack Rolls upon performing Ranged Attacks.

Final Tips

The Hunter Ranger is a very solid damage dealer because they’re straightforward to pilot and they inflict massive damage from afar. They excel in trapping a powerful target in place with Ensnaring Strike and even deal damage against multiple enemies with Hail of Thorns. As long as you’re able to succeed in your Constitution Saving Throw and you’re far from the limelight of combat, you’re going to maintain Concentration for Ensnaring Strike as well as your other Concentration Spells.

When executing Ranged Attacks, try to optimally position your character at High Ground. Doing so will grant a +2 Attack Roll bonus with respect to the target, thereby boosting the Hunter Ranger’s total Attack Roll to +10 by the time you reach Level 4. This would almost always guarantee a successful hit!

Baldur’s Gate 3 Hunter Ranger Build Guide - Shortswords with Main Hand Attack

Lastly, even though you’re focused on executing Bow attacks, remember to equip 2 Shortswords as your Melee Weapons instead of a Two-Handed Martial Weapon like the Everburn Blade. As a result, you gain the Off-Hand Attack (Melee) Bonus Action, letting you move in for the kill when needed. Usually, you’ll need to switch to Melee Weapons when you incur a Disadvantage with Ranged Attacks since enemies are near you.

Stay tuned for more Baldur’s Gate 3 content as we update the other 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, as well as our Baldur’s Gate 3 Guides.

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