Baldur’s Gate 3 has various armor types, and how well you can use them will depend on your character’s abilities. This is because certain classes and races grant armor proficiencies, though it’s possible to gain more over the course of the game as you level up and receive new abilities.
In Baldur’s Gate 3, if you put on armor you’re not proficient in, you’ll gain the Armor Class bonus, but you’ll have Disadvantage on Strength & Dexterity checks and cannot cast spells. This is a steep penalty, so ensure you’re wearing the correct gear for your class. Luckily, unlike previous editions of D&D, if you have proficiency with armor, you can cast spells while wearing it! This means Wizards can cast spells while wearing plate mail, so long as they have proficiency.
Baldur’s Gate 3: What Classes & Races Receive Armor Proficiencies
When you create a new character in Baldur’s Gate 3, they will gain weapon and armor proficiencies from their class. These are the starting armor proficiencies for every class in Baldur’s Gate 3 at launch:
- Barbarian – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Shields
- Bard – Light Armor
- Cleric – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Heavy Armor, Shields
- Druid – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Shields
- Fighter – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Heavy Armor, Shields
- Monk – None
- Paladin – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Heavy Armor, Shields
- Ranger – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Shields
- Rogue – Light Armor
- Sorcerer – None
- Warlock – Light Armor
- Wizard – None
You can also gain extra proficiencies from your choice of race or subrace. The following races in Baldur’s Gate 3 also receive armor proficiencies:
- Half-Elf – Light Armor and Shields
- Human – Light Armor and Shields
- Githyanki – Light Armor and Medium Armor
- Shield Dwarf – Light Armor and Medium Armor
Baldur’s Gate 3: How To Gain Armor Proficiencies
There are two ways to gain armor proficiencies in Baldur’s Gate 3. The first involves taking a Feat at level 4. Some Feats give you armor proficiency, though you’ll need to take them in turn. So, a Wizard can only take Lightly Armored to gain Light Armor proficiency and cannot skip ahead.
Another option is to multiclass. When you take a level, you’ll gain all of the proficiencies of a new class, so a Wizard taking a level in Cleric will gain Light, Medium, and Heavy Armor proficiencies. This comes at the cost of slowing down your progression in your main class.
Baldur’s Gate 3: Armor Types, Explained
When you hover over a piece of armor with the cursor, you’ll be given its description in a text box. The type of armor should be listed just under its name, and a prompt will appear at the bottom of its text if you cannot equip it. These are the various armor types in Baldur’s Gate 3:
- Light Armor Types – Leather Armor, Leather Helmet, Studded Leather Armor, Padded Armor
- Medium Armor Types – Breastplate, Chain Shirt, Githyanki Half Plate, Half Plate, Helmet, Hide Armor, Scale Mail,
- Heavy Armor Types – Chain Mail, Ring Mail, Splint Mail, Plate Armor
It bears mentioning that some magical boots, gloves, and helmets have armor proficiency restrictions, so check each before equipping them. Some items are classed as clothing, and everyone is proficient in them. Notably, this includes magical robes, so you don’t need to worry about your arcane spellcasters being unable to don enchanted robes.