Best Karlach Build in Baldur’s Gate 3


In our Baldur’s Gate 3 Karlach build guide, we’ll dive into her character stats, look at her Melee and Ranged abilities, and craft a potent Barbarian using her as a base companion. 

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Best Karlach Build in Baldur’s Gate 3

Karlach is a strong Zariel Tiefling Barbarian who really likes being strong in fights and life. She used to be a slave soldier, which means she knows about being a soldier. She likes when people are kind to those who are not treated well. She doesn’t like showing weakness and tackles problems like a true fighter.

In Baldur’s Gate 3, companions are friends who aren’t controlled by players. They join the player’s group and help in fights and stories. Companions are important because they can fight and talk, and they share their thoughts about the game’s events. Players can choose not to have companions, and companions can die or become friends. Some players might even make romantic relationships with companions. Companions like Karlach have their own big stories before joining the player.

In this guide for Baldur’s Gate 3 Karlach build, we’ll dive into her character and craft a potent Barbarian using her as a base. 

Baldur’s Gate 3 Karlach Build Overview

Karlach is really strong, just like we said. She’s mad at the people who made her a slave, so we need a strong Karlach build having good abilities for that. She has a thing in her chest that’s like a hell engine, used to fuel tanks in hell. This might mean she gets stronger by taking souls or using them. Here are the stats of Karlach.

  • Class: Barbarian
  • Race: Zariel Tiefling
  • Background: Outlander
  • Base Proficiencies: Light, Medium, Shields, simple weapons
  • Karlach’s skills: Athletics, perception, survival, intimidation
  • Location: The Risen Road, Act 1, Hunt the Devil Quest

In Act 1, you find Karlach, a strong Zariel Tiefling. She’s great at fighting up close with big weapons because she’s really strong. She can also throw things to hurt enemies. She’s a Barbarian who gets super angry in fights. If you give her a good weapon and use magic like Haste on her, she becomes even stronger.

CHECK OUT: Baldur’s Gate 3 Shadowheart: How to save and romance Shadowheart in BG3

Best Karlach Build: Melee 

In this Karlach build, Karlach follows an 8/4 split between Barbarian and Fighter. This combo brings out the best of both classes, making her a top-notch melee character. Leveling up is smooth and competitive with other classes. In Act 1, she focuses on Barbarian, then briefly shifts to Fighter in Act 2 for Action Surge. This grants an extra action in a turn (once after resting). With this, she can attack four times in a round, and even six if boosted by Haste. It’s a powerful strategy that keeps Karlach strong and versatile.

Furthermore, picking the right melee weapon is important for BG3 Karlach build. Since she’s good at fighting up close and can take hits, the following weapons work well for her.

  • Greataxe: For Karlach in BG3, the best weapon is the Greataxe. It helps her get angry fast and hurt enemies a lot. When she’s angry, she can’t be easily hurt by bad effects and deals double damage.
  • Greatclubs: Another good choice is the Greatclub. It hurts enemies a lot up close and is easy to swing, making Karlach more nimble in fights.

CHECK OUT: Best Shadowheart Build in Baldur’s Gate 3

Leveling The Melee Karlach Build

As Karlach grows from level 1 to 12, it’s important to carefully boost her abilities, feats, and skills. This creates a balanced character. Here’s how to optimize Baldur’s Gate 3 Karlach Build progress for the best results:

Level 1 & 2: Barbarian Class

To make Karlach better at hitting enemies hard in close combat, improve her Strength. This will help her swing her weapon with more power and deal more damage.

As she gets stronger, Karlach gains the Rage ability. This makes her hits even stronger, adding +2 extra damage to her throws and close-up attacks. It also makes her tougher against physical damage.

When she reaches Level 2, she learns new skills:

  • One is Danger Sense, which helps her avoid traps, spells, and tricky surfaces. This makes her better at dodging dangerous stuff. 
  • Another skill is Reckless Attack, which lets her attack more fiercely. She gets an advantage when trying to hit enemies, but they also get an advantage when trying to hit her back until her next turn.

Level 3: Berserker Subclass

At Level 3, you pick a subclass for Karlach build: Wildheart, Berserker, or Wild Magic. Berserker, the simplest and good for beginners, might suit her best. It has strengths and weaknesses, but it’s easier to use. 

Unlike Wildheart or Wild Magic, this subclass is all about fighting up close and causing big harm. As a Berserker, you get special powers:

  • Frenzy: Your Rage becomes Frenzy. This gives you a Frenzied Strike and an Enraged Throw. You can also attack with a random thing as a bonus action.
  • Frenzied Strike (Bonus Action): You attack closely with your weapon.
  • Enraged Throw: You can grab stuff or even creatures and throw them at enemies. This hurts them more and makes them fall down.

This style of fighting is great for taking on many enemies at once. You can damage a lot of them together, which helps control the crowd. This is extra helpful before you reach Level 5 and can use Haste’s ability.

Level 4: Tavern Brawler Feat

Choose Ability Improvements as Karlach levels up. Put two points into strength, making it 18 at level four. This boosts your damage consistently. Hold off on the Great Weapon Master feat for now. The Barbarian’s Berserker Subclass benefits from bonus actions like Frenzy Strike and Enraged Throw, making a simple stat boost more effective.

Though gameplay won’t change much, you’ll hit harder and connect better. At level 8, pick the Great Weapon Master feat. Since you’re using bonus actions heavily at this stage, you’ll benefit from higher attack accuracy. Look forward to future feats at level 12 to further enhance your character.

Level 5: Tavern Brawler Feat

At Level 5, Baldur’s Gate 3 Karlach build gains new abilities:

  • Extra Attack lets her make an extra attack after hitting with a weapon or her fists. This doesn’t add to other bonus attacks she might have.
  • Her Fast Movement boosts her speed by 3 meters when not wearing heavy armor. This means she can move 12 meters in a turn. This is great for getting close to enemies quickly for melee and area damage attacks. 

Also, remember that her bonus attacks from Tavern Brawler and Berserker are separate, allowing her to attack up to 4 times in one turn.

Level 6

At Level 6 for the Karlach build, it gets even stronger. She gains Extra Rage with Mindless Rage, a special ability that protects her during Rage. This makes her tougher and more accurate, countering effects that could make her weaker or miss attacks. Even the Calm Emotions spell, usually used by Clerics and Bards, can’t stop her Rage now. This means she can keep fighting at her best even when others try to calm her down. It’s a big advantage for her battles.

Level 7

At Level 7, Karlach gains the Feral Instinct ability. This gives her a +3 for her Initiative, helping her start fights first. She also can’t be surprised anymore. This is super useful because she won’t lose her first turn, which is important, especially against tough enemies and bosses.

Level 8

At level 8, Barbarians can choose another feat, and a great choice for Karlach is the Great Weapon Master feat.

This feat brings two benefits. First, it offers a risky reward by adding 10 extra damage to your attacks, but there’s a -5 penalty to your attack rolls. This makes it harder to hit enemies, shown as a lower percentage. However, you can switch this penalty off in the Passive section on your toolbar to see the normal percentage.

Secondly, the feat grants you an extra attack as a bonus action when you score a critical hit or defeat a creature. This is the real strength of the feat because you’ll be landing many critical hits and kills with this build. To maximize its potential, start your combat with a regular attack using your action and save the bonus action for a Great Weapon Master attack.

If you manage a critical hit or a kill, use your bonus action for Great Weapon Master attacks, prioritizing them over Frenzied Strike or Enraged Throw. This strategy will help you stay in a frenzy throughout the fight. If you need to stun an enemy or the bonus effect doesn’t trigger, then opt for those alternate bonus action attacks.

Level 9

When you reach Level 9, you gain Brutal Critical. This makes Critical Hits even better by adding an extra damage die and more critical dice. It also increases your chance to land Critical Hits, working nicely with Great Weapons Master. This improves the odds of getting an extra bonus attack from that Feat, thus increasing the chances of leveling up in the Karlach build.

Level 10

At Level 10, players get Intimidating Action, a move that scares enemies. This makes them worse at doing things and attacking because they’re afraid. It also stops them from getting close to Karlach, and they might run away sometimes too.

Level 11

At Level 11, Karlach gets Relentless Rage. Once per Short Rest, if she loses all her health, she gets 1 HP back. This helps her stay in the fight and not get knocked out when her health reaches zero. It’s like a safety net that keeps her alive and fighting.

Level 12

At level 12, Karlach, like all Barbarians in Baldur’s Gate 3, reaches her maximum strength. This unlocks more Rage for better tactics and an extra Feat ability. Karlach’s strength lies in dealing heavy damage with multiple attacks. To boost this, the best Feat for her is Savage Attacker. This enhances her damage potential, making her an even more formidable force on the battlefield.

CHECK OUT: Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Weapons: Skills, Abilities, Locations, and more

Best Karlach Build: Ranged 

In the Ranged Karlach Build with the Berserker subclass in BG3, using ranged weapons like a Heavy Crossbow isn’t as helpful. While they can deal damage, you miss out on the extra defense against attacks. So, the best options for a ranged weapon in these builds are the Heavy Crossbow and The Greataxe.

1. Heavy Crossbow:

Karlach can also use a Heavy Crossbow, which is good for shooting far away. This helps her fight enemies before she gets close for melee battles. The crossbow is versatile, so Karlach can be useful in different situations. It lets her fight smartly by attacking from a distance and being part of the battle even when she’s far away.

2. The Greataxe:

Karlach loves the Greataxe. It suits her Barbarian style well. With it, she can get really mad and hurt enemies a lot in close fighting. The Greataxe is powerful, especially with her strong abilities, making her super strong in battles. She can cut through enemies and change how fights go.

CHECK OUT: Baldur’s Gate 3 Companions Guide: Locations, Abilities, and all new details

Leveling The Ranged Kalach Build

For the Ranged Karlach build, our leveling follows the melee path, with one big change: grab the Tavern Brawler feat at level four. This boosts Strength, making Throw attacks even stronger. This feat is crucial for high damage and should be taken early. 

Keep following the melee plan but at levels 6-10, multiclass into Fighter for Action Surge and Champion’s better critical chance. 

Then, spend the last three levels as a Berserker Barbarian. This subclass lets you use Improvised Weapons while Raging, allowing three throws per turn at level five, rising to five with Haste. This setup maximizes damage output.

Recommended Items

For the best BG3 Karlach builds, there are gear options for both beginners and experienced players. Beginners might want to look for gear that boosts their strength and toughness. Whereas, advanced players can aim for more specialized gears.

For Beginners:

Gear SlotBest Gear Item
HeadHaste Helm 
ChestBloodguzzler Garb
GlovesBracers of Defence
BootsLinebreaker Boots
NecklaceAmulet of Misty Step
RingEmerald Ring
RingRing of Psionic Protection
Weapon 1 Main HandEverburn Blade
Weapon 2 Main HandGithyanki Crossbow

For Advanced Players:

Gear SlotBest Gear Item
HeadBonespike Helmet
CapeCindermoth Cloak
ChestBonespike Garb
GlovesBonespike Gloves
BootsBonespike Boots
NecklaceAmulet of Greater Health
RingKiller’s Sweetheart
RingRing Of Regeneration
Weapon 1 Main HandBalduran’s Giantslayer

Making the best Karlach build in Baldur’s Gate 3 is fun. Think about her abilities, weapons, armor, and potions. She can be super strong with the Berserker subclass and powerful potions. Make sure to choose what fits your style. Enjoy making Karlach awesome in the game.

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Mohit is a freelance writer who loves writing games related blogs and news. When he's not writing, he's either reading fantasy books or playing the newest video games. He's a big fan of Mass Effect game series. Mohit really likes role-playing games, and sometimes he thinks of everyday conversations like a choose-your-own-adventure game.


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