Baldur’s Gate 3 offers players all kinds of exciting options for their character’s race, ranging from ancient Elves to the devil-adjacent Tieflings. One race got the short end of the stick in Baldur’s Gate 3, and it’s easy to think that developer Larian Studios purposely sabotaged them, as humans are easily the worst race to pick in the game.
Baldur’s Gate 3 uses the Dungeons & Dragons 5E rules, and humans are similarly underpowered there, except for one notable exception. The version of the human that appeared in the 2014 D&D Player’s Handbook received +1 to all stats… and that’s it. This is a terrible benefit, especially compared to everything released for the game, since most classes only need to boost two or three of their stats to be effective.
The humans are only redeemed by an optional variant that pretty much every player uses, where they only receive two stat points. Still, they gain a Skill Proficiency and a Feat, with the free Feat being a fantastic benefit at level 1.
The Humans In Baldur’s Gate 3 Are The Worst Race In The Game
Baldur’s Gate 3 has only one option available for humans, and it’s awful. If you select human as your race, you gain an extra Skill Proficiency, your carrying capacity is increased by a quarter, and you gain Light Armor Proficiency, Shield Proficiency, and weapon proficiency with spears, pikes, halberds, and glaives.
This is a paltry selection of features compared to the other races in the game. The carrying capacity is pointless if you have a warrior in your group, as they can be the pack mule of the party, while the extra Skill is okay, but you’ll get at least four choices from your class and Background. The more skill-centric classes like the Bard and the Rogue let you pick your skills anyway, so you if care so much, you can go for them.
The extra weapon selection isn’t great, as most classes will give you the weapon proficiencies you’ll need, as the classes that don’t use them are spellcasters who rely on magic. The armor proficiency is a little more practical, but it’s never vital to your build, as there are races that will grant Medium Armor Proficiency off the bat, like the Shield Dwarf.
The human is terrible, even when compared to the Half-Elf and its various subraces. All other races get interesting or helpful powers, while the human has a few static passives that your class choice can easily overwrite.
Larian Studios Doesn’t Like It When People Play Boring Humans (Even Though Fans Love Them)
It’s easy to guess why Larian Studios might not have been as enthusiastic about the humans as the other races in the game. Back when Baldur’s Gate 3 was still in Early Access, a post was made on the game’s Steam page that showed the average character made by players when the game launched. The result was a white human male with brown hair, which Larian described as the “Vault Dweller.” The devs actually yelled at fans, as they had put a lot of work into adding crazy fantasy race options, and fans had ignored them to make fantasy Kal Cestis.
It’s understandable why devs would be annoyed at people picking the “boring” option in a game, especially when you can take so many different paths in Baldur’s Gate 3. This is the same company that created the infamous Baldur’s Gate 3 bear romance scene, so playing as Johnny Generic will likely ruffle the feathers of people who spent countless hours coding so much wacky content for players to find.
Unfortunately for Larian, this plan didn’t work. In a much later Steam post after the launch of Baldur’s Gate 3, Larian revealed the most played classes and races in the game. It turned out that humans were the second most popular race in the game, narrowly losing out to the Half-Elf, and just beating the Elf. After that, there was a sharp drop-off before you hit the Dragonborn at number 4, with all the interesting races trailing behind it.
So, why are the most recognizably human races the most popular? While Baldur’s Gate 3 is a fantasy game, a part of the appeal is seeing a recognizable face at the front and center. Players care more about that than mechanical benefits, as they would much rather play a human than an alien Githyanki, which is superior in nearly every way in features but looks like a dried-up frog.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Should Add The Variant Human From D&D
If players want to create a human character, Larian must add the variant human from the D&D 5E Player’s Handbook. This popular optional rule gives humans an extra Feat at the first level, which can drastically alter a class’ playstyle. A Feat is strong enough to make the humans enjoyable to play, giving them many mechanical customization options out of the gate.
With the extra Feat, you could gain some Cantrips and a spell with one of the many Magic Initiate Feats, gain an extra attack with your Bonus Action using Polearm Master, or just boost your stats even further. The Feat selection in Baldur’s Gate 3 is much more limited than the current list in D&D 5E, but there is still plenty you can use to tailor your hero in new and interesting ways.
Larian has already downplayed the idea of Baldur’s Gate 3 receiving DLC expansions due to how the D&D rules work, but the game’s incredible success cannot be ignored. Like Throne of Bhaal before, Baldur’s Gate 3 has plenty of scope to continue the story and take the characters from level 12 to 20, with opportunities to add more races and subclasses to the game.
If Baldur’s Gate 3 does receive more content in the future, then the developers should use that chance to add the variant humans. Clearly, fans love their Vault Dwellers, and Larian Studios shouldn’t shackle their heroes with underwhelming abilities to encourage them to play something else.