The cliche of the best defense is a good offense is perfectly channeled in BG3’s shields that usually grant offensive boosts in addition to defense. There are many options but I wanted to outline the most optimal ones. Here are my top 10 best shields in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Baldur’s Gate 3: Top 10 Best Shields in the Game
Wood Woad Shield
You can get a great early-game shield through the Investigate Kagha quest in the Druid’s Grove by defeating the Wood Woad. The shield grants you the Ensnaring Strike spell which provides superb CC for Act 1 and beyond. It not only makes it so that enemies cannot move but the shield’s spell deals damage to them each round and grants you Advantage on attack rolls on the affected enemy. I highly recommend this shield on melee characters who want to lock down targets or on Favored Enemy: Bounty Hunter Rangers with a Hand Crossbow in one hand and shield in the other so that enemies have Disadvantage on the Saving Throw.
This was my bread-and-butter equipment choice during Act 1 on my squishy Cleric. As soon as the character wielding it drops to half health, the shield automatically grants them a hefty 8 temporary HP. It’s found in a chest behind the Goblin Camp portal circle.
Found in Moonrise Towers and isn’t as flashy as the previous two. However, the Sentinel Shield’s Initiative roll boost makes it easier to go first. This is quite important since the current meta of the game rewards alpha striking, that is, taking out enemies as soon as possible before they get their turn. The faster you focus fire a single enemy, the fewer turns they’ll have and therefore fewer opportunities to hurt you. It also provides a Perception bonus to help you avoid ambushes.
Another function over flashiness shield that is great for front liners. It’s found in the Rivington General Store and it’ll keep stacking physical damage reduction on your character each turn. I would suggest combining it with the Adamantine Heavy Armor and the Heavy Armor Master feat for a hefty damage reduction value on each attack.
I would highly recommend this shield on any Cleric focusing on casting or any other caster for that matter. It provides all the usual benefits of a shield including the Shield Bash ability and Advantage on Dexterity Saving Throws. In addition, you get a +1 bonus to spell attack rolls and your Spell Save DC. It’s also great on Swords Bards, Pact of the Blade Warlocks, and any caster that manages to grab shield proficiency.
Shield of Scorching Reprisal
This is a superb shield option that benefits already high AC characters like Defence Fighting Style Paladins and Fighters. It’s because the shield’s effect Blazing Retaliation deals fire damage to enemies that miss the wielder. So the more AC you have the more often the fire damage will trigger. You can find the shield behind the Last Light Inn in the graveyard area on a Flaming Fist corpse beneath a pile of stones. The rubble will require a Strength check to clear.
The good ol’ Adamantine Shield crafted in the bowels of the Ancient Grymforge. Not only does it make you immune to critical hits but it also reduces the attack rolls of creatures that miss you making them more likely to miss next time as well. Out of all the Adamantine options I definitely recommend crafting this if you have a shield wielder in your party. You’ll need Mithral ore of course and the Shield Mould which is located on a skeleton at the top of the stairs in the Shar Worshipper Dormitory while exploring Grymforge.
Looted from Disciple Z’rell in Act 2, this shield grants one of the best defensive spells in the game called Fire Shield. It has the Absolute Brand requirement but only for the meager spell damage reduction of one. Anyone can cast the Fire Shield spell. It essentially gives you elemental resistances and makes it so that you automatically deal 2d8 damage to attackers for each attack they make hit or miss. This is amazing on any shield wielder but especially on Barbarians as Fire Shield works with Rage if you cast it beforehand.
Shield of Devotion
This is one of the best shields in the game just based on the ratio between mechanical power and the fact that you get it decently early in the Last Light Inn from Talli. You’ll get Shield Bash, an extra level 1 spell slot, and the ability to cast Level 3 Aid on yourself. For example, on Clerics and Paladins, this means you can cast an extra Bless on your allies, or an extra Hunter’s Mark or Hex on melee Rangers and Blade Warlocks respectively. And let’s not forget that you essentially get plus 20 HP with that Aid if you’re damaged. Truly an early powerhouse of a shield.
Viconia’s Walking Fortress
We’ve reached the big mama of shields. This legendary bulwark dropped by Viconia in the House of Grief provides you with powerful retaliation and defensive abilities and a plethora of useful spells. First off, you get an enhanced Reaction-based shield bash that deals damage and knocks attackers prone. Secondly, you get Advantage on Saving Throws against spells and spell attack rolls against you have Disadvantage. Lastly, you get a free casting of Reflective Spell and Warding Bond for your squishier allies. You’ll have to get to Act 3 to get it but I highly recommend delving down the Daughter of Darkness quest and the House of Grief to get it. Arguably, this is the best shield in the game and it’ll indeed make you a walking fortress.