Armor Class and Difficulity Class in Baldur’s Gate 3


The Armour Class (AC) is a fundamental game mechanic in Baldur’s Gate 3. It acts as a protective barrier for your Character against any incoming offensive move that requires an Attack Roll, including Spells. The strength of this protective shield hinges on the type of Armour you’ve chosen for your character.

Navigating the Intricacies of Armour Class in Baldur’s Gate 3

The AC of your character is indicative of their capacity to evade injury during combat. Several factors influence your AC, such as the Armour you have on, the Shield you hold, and the Dexterity modifier your character possesses.

A Deep Dive into the Calculation of Armour Class

In the absence of Armour or a Shield, the AC of your character is equivalent to 10 plus their Dexterity modifier.

When your character is adorned in Armour, wields a Shield, or both, the AC comes into play. For instance, if you have Padded Armour, your AC stands at 11, meaning an adversary needs to hit 11 on the Attack Roll to harm you. Also worth noting is that since Padded Armour falls under Light Armour, your Dexterity Modifier contributes to your total AC.

Light Armour: Quick and Agile

Sporting Light Armour allows you to capitalize on the full extent of your Dexterity modifier, increasing your Armour Class accordingly.

Medium Armour: A Balance Between Protection and Agility

Equipping Medium Armour offers up to a +2 AC boost from your Dexterity modifier, balancing protection and agility.

Heavy Armour: Maximum Protection, Minimum Agility

On donning Heavy Armour, your Dexterity modifier doesn’t contribute to your AC, providing maximum protection at the expense of agility.

The Power of Shields

In the world of Baldur’s Gate 3, wielding a Shield confers an additional +2 to your AC, further strengthening your defences.

Mastering the Art of Armour Proficiency

To effectively utilize Armour and shields, your character must be proficient with them. Your class primarily determines your Armour and shield proficiencies. Chapter 5 elaborates on the penalties for wearing Armour or wielding a shield without the necessary proficiency.

Contrary to Weapons Proficiency, having proficiency in a specific Armour type is crucial, lest you incur severe penalties. Characters who wear Armour without the required proficiency will suffer disadvantages on any Ability Check, Saving Throw, or Attack Roll involving Strength or Dexterity, and they will also be unable to cast Spells.


The Difficulty Class (DC), a key game mechanic in Baldur’s Gate 3, gauges the complexity of a task that a character tackles through an Ability Check. The game intelligently identifies the applicable Ability from the available six in context to the task and its level of difficulty. Naturally, the higher the task’s complexity, the higher the DC.

Understanding Difficulty Class in Baldur’s Gate 3

An Ability Check puts a character’s inherent prowess and acquired skills to the test to surmount a challenge. Whenever a character or monster initiates an action with a potential failure outcome (apart from an attack), an Ability Check comes into play.

Performing an Ability Check

Each Ability Check undertaken necessitates the game to discern the relevant Ability among the six available and set the Difficulty Class in proportion to the task’s complexity. The game assigns a higher DC to more intricate tasks.

The procedure for an Ability Check involves rolling a D20 and appending the corresponding Ability Modifier. Apply any bonuses or penalties to this D20 roll, and then juxtapose the cumulative total to the DC. If the total meets or surpasses the DC, the Ability Check succeeds, meaning the character triumphs over the presented challenge. If not, it results in failure.

Interaction of DC and Skills

Every Ability encompasses a broad spectrum of skills, and characters or monsters can acquire proficiency in these. A skill signifies a particular facet of an Ability Score, and a character’s proficiency indicates specialization in that aspect. (The character’s initial skill proficiencies are established during Character Creation)

For instance, a Dexterity check might symbolize a character’s effort to perform an acrobatic feat, conceal an item, or remain unseen. These Dexterity facets have corresponding skills: Acrobatics, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth, respectively. Thus, a character proficient in the Stealth skill excels at Dexterity checks associated with evasion and concealment.

The following list details the skills connected to each Ability Score. (There are no skills related to Constitution.)

Strength: Athletics

Dexterity: Acrobatics, Sleight of Hand, Stealth

Intelligence: Arcana, History, Investigation, Nature, Religion

Wisdom: Animal Handling, Insight, Medicine, Perception, Survival

Charisma: Deception, Intimidation, Performance, Persuasion

Difficulty Class Table

This table illustrates the Typical Difficulty Classes:

Difficulty Difficulty Class (DC)
Very Easy DC 5
Easy DC 10
Medium DC 15
Hard DC 20
Very Hard DC 25
Nearly Impossible DC 30

Understanding Passive Checks

A passive check is a unique Ability Check variant that doesn’t require die rolls. This type of check could denote the average outcome of a repetitive task, like incessantly looking for hidden doors.

To ascertain a character’s total for a passive check, add all the applicable modifiers to 10. If the character has Advantage on the check, append 5. Conversely, subtract 5 for Disadvantage.

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