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Monks are priests who are specialised in barehanded fighting, though they can use single-handed thief weapons and share many things in common with the warrior group. But unlike all other warriors, who can wear armor and specialise in all weapons, monks cannot wear armor or use shields and can only become proficient in the thief weapons they have access to and may put a single point in single weapon style. These disadvantages are compensated for by a large amount of different bonuses and abilities they can learn. Monks are famous for their special abilities, such as Stunning Blow, which is an attack with fists which may stun the opponent, and Quivering Palm which has the potential to instantly kill most enemies. 

This class can be seen as a hybrid of warriors, thieves and priests:

  • Monks use the experience and hit dice table as Clerics. Monks do not gain any extra hit points for having a constitution score higher than 16 and are limited to a maximum of 18 strength at character creation.
  • Monks can use cleric scrolls and many mage wands, including Wand of Cloudkill, in the original game. This has been disabled in Enhanced Edition.
  • Monks use the THAC0 and High Level Abilities (with the exception of Resist Magic) table as Fighters, and Gorion's Ward earns the same stronghold as fighters. The manual erroneously states that monks get High Level Abilities at level 22, but in the actual game they get them at level 20, and end up getting a total of 21 HLAs at maximum level. This may have been changed in the Enhanced Edition.
  • The monk's primary stat is strength (not wisdom), thus he gains strength from rewards that increase the primary stat, such as  +1 strength from a Star result from the Deck of Many Things.
  • Monks can use the same weapons as thieves that only requires one hand, and have a limited access to thieving skills, being able to hide in shadows and move silently (although they do not gain bonus to damage) and may attempt to find traps (although they are unable to disable them).

Monks must be Lawful Good, Lawful Neutral or Lawful Evil. 

This class is not available in Baldur's Gate, but is available in the Enhanced Edition of the game along with two new monk kits: the Lawful Good Sun Soul Monk and the Lawful Evil Dark Moon Monk.

Character abilities tableEdit

Character Ability Score Minimum Score Class Kits^^
Strength 3 3
Dexterity 9 9
Constitution 9 11
Intelligence 3 3
Wisdom 9 9
Charisma 3 3

During character creation, rolls below the minimum value for the class will be increased to that value. This table uses the values for Humans, other Races have modified ability scores.

^^ The Dark Moon and Sun Soul class kits have an increased Constitution minimum ability score.

AbilitiesEdit

Every monk gains +10 thieving ability points when they level up. Dexterity determines how many points are added to each skill during the game as well.

Stunning blowEdit

Monks can use Stunning blow once per day for every four levels. All the monk's attacks in the six seconds following the ability's activation that are successful, the opponent must make a save or be stunned.

Quivering palmEdit

When a monk reaches the 13th level, they get the ability 'Quivering Palm'. The first time a monk attacks with their fists after activating Quivering Palm, if the attack is successful then the opponent must make a save vs spell or die. The ability can be used once per day.

Lay on handsEdit

They gain the ability to lay on hands at level 7, which heals 2 hit points per level.

Find trapsEdit

Monks begin the game with 5% chance to find traps (human racial bonus) modified by their dexterity score. Unlike thieves, monks may not attempt to disarm found traps. Does not benefit from scores higher than 100.

Hide in shadowEdit

Monks begin the game with 5% chance to hide in shadows (human racial bonus) modified by their dexterity score. A monk attacking an enemy from hiding with a melee weapon receives a +4 bonus to his to-hit roll, but unlike a thief does not receive any bonus to damage. The chance to hide successfully is decreased when attempted during the day or whilst the monk is not in shadows.

Move silentlyEdit

Monks begin the game with 10% chance (human racial bonus) modified by their dexterity score to remain hidden whilst moving after successfully hiding in shadows.

Detect Illusion (Dark Moon Monk Only)Edit

Dark Moon Monks begin the game with 10% chance (kit bonus) to dispel non-friendly illusion spells within 30ft whenever their Find Traps skill is active. Does not benefit from scores higher than 100. 

Level-dependent bonusesEdit

Armor class bonusesEdit

The armor class of the monk is 9 at the start. This decreases by another point at level 2 and every two levels thereafter, until level 20. Subsequently, there are further single point bonuses at levels 24, 27, 30, 35 and 40. This results in a -6 for base armor class if reaching level 40.

Deflect MissilesEdit

This gives a monk a -1 armor class bonus against missile attacks every three levels.

Saving throw bonusEdit

Monks have +2 bonus when they need to make saving throws against spells right from the start. At level 9, they gain +1 bonus to all saving throws. These stack allowing for +3 vs spells and +1 to all others.

ImmunitiesEdit

At level 5, they gain immunity to all diseases and cannot be hasted or slowed - they may not use Oils of Speed, but may wear Boots of Speed. At level 9, they also become immune to status effect charm as well. At level 11, they become immune to poison too. At level 20, they become immune to non-magical weapons.

Movement speed and speed factorEdit

Monks move +2 points faster than normal units from the start. They gain +1 for every five levels. 

At level 8, they receive -1 bonus to speed factor.

Level Damage
1-2 1-6
3-5 1-8
6-8 1-10
9-11 2-13 (+1 weapon)
12-14 3-14 (+2 weapon)
15-17 3-22
18-24 4-23 ( +3 weapon)
25-40 5-24 (+4 weapon).

Unarmed attacksEdit

Monks start with 1 attack per round. Every three levels, this is improved by 1/2 attack per round. At level 18, a monk can attack with his fists 4 times each round. Starting from 9th level, the monk's fist is treated as magic weapon. These attacks all come from the main hand leaving it possible for an offhand weapon to be equipped, although no proficiency points may be put into two-weapon fighting.

Magical resistanceEdit

At level 14, Monks gain 3% resistance to magic for every level, which adds 42% magic resistance immediately. This continues to grow up to a max of 83%.

Class kits Edit

Dark Moon Monk Edit

The Order of the Dark Moon is a secretive monastic order that follows the teachings of the dark goddess Shar. Monks of the Dark Moon use physical prowess, dark magic, and many different forms of deception to mask their activities and strike with deadly precision.

Advantages:

  • +10% to Detect Illusion
  • May invest points into the Detect Illusion skill.
  • May use the Frozen Fist ability once per day. Gains one use at level 1 and an additional use every 4 levels thereafter. When this ability is activated, the Dark Moon Monk's fists are wreathed in a frosty shell. For 1 turn, the Dark Moon Monk's unarmed attacks deal an additional 2 points of cold damage on each successful hit
  • 1st level: May cast Blindness once per day
  • 3rd level: May cast Blur once per day
  • 7th level: May cast Vampiric Touch once per day
  • 11th level: May cast Mirror Image once per day

Disadvantages:

  • Alignment restricted to lawful evil
  • May not use the Lay On Hands ability
  • May not use the Stunning Blow ability

Sun Soul Monk Edit

Sun Soul Monks were once worshipers of Amaunator in the time of the Netheril, but today their worship is divided between Lathander, Selune, and Sune. Sun Soul Monks adhere strictly to the law, using their martial arts and magical abilities to drive out darkness and corruption wherever they find it.

Advantages:

  • 2nd level: May cast Sun Soulray once per day. The Sun Soul Monk projects a blast of light from open palm, dealing 1d8 fire damage for every 2 caster levels (up to a maximum of 5d8 damage) to a single target. Undead creatures take an additional 6 points of damage
  • 5th level: May cast Flaming Fists once per day. The Sun Soul Monk channels inner light into unarmed attacks, turning fists into flaming weapons that deal an additional 2d6 fire damage per hit for the next round. The duration increases to 2 rounds at level 9, 3 rounds at level 12, 4 rounds at level 15, and 5 rounds at level 25. This special ability automatically modifies normal attacks, no weapon-switching needs to be done
  • 6th level: Gains an additional use of Sun Soulray
  • 8th level: May cast Greater Sun once per day. The Sun Soul Monk wreathes in flames that act as a Fireshield(Red), granting the Monk 50% Fire Resistance and protecting from attacks made within a 5-ft. radius. An opponent that hits the Monk with any weapons or spells within this radius suffers 1d8+2 points of fire damage
  • 10th level: Gains an additional use of Sun Soulray
  • 13th level: May cast Sun Soulbeam once per day. The Sun Soul Monk emits a dazzling burst of light that strikes at all other creatures within a 30-ft. radius. The Sun Soulbeam does not automatically hit all targets, but makes a melee attack using the Monk's current THAC0 (+3 to hit vs. undead). Struck creatures suffer 9d6 points of damage (9d6+3 if undead), unless they save vs. Spell for half. In addition, all creatures except the Monk must save vs. Spell or be blinded for 2 hours
  • 15th level: Gains an additional use of Sun Soulray

Disadvantages:

  • Alignment restricted to lawful good
  • May not use Stunning Blow ability
  • May not use Quivering Palm ability

High-level class abilitiesEdit

High level class abilities are added the expansion Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal. For all monks and warriors, the pool of abilities consist of abilities which are accesses from the special abilities menu which can be used during battle. Monks do not have access to the Resist Magic ability, as they already have 60% magic resistance by the time it becomes available.  

  • Power Attack, this ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Critical Strike, requires power attack. This ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Smite, requires power attack and critical strike. This ability can be selected only one time.
  • Deathblow, this ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Greater Deathblow, requires deathblow. This ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Whirlwind, this ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Greater Whirlwind, it requires whirlwind. This ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • War Cry, this ability can be selected as many times you like.
  • Hardiness, this ability can be selected as many times you like.

Table for experience, hit points and proficiency pointsEdit

Level Experience needed Hit Dice (d8) Proficiency points
1 0 1 2
2 1,500 2
3 3,000 3
4 6,000 4 1
5 13,000 5
6 27,500 6
7 55,000 7
8 110,000 8 1
9 225,000 9
10 450,000 9 + 2
11 675,000 9 + 4
12 900,000 9 + 6 1
13 1,125,000 9 + 8
14 1,350,000 9 + 10
15 1,575,000 9 + 12
16 1,800,000 9 + 14 1
17 2,025,000 9 + 16
18 2,250,000 9 + 18
19 2,475,000 9 + 20
20 2,700,000 9 + 22 1
21 2,925,000 9 + 24
22 3,150,000 9 + 26
23 3,375,000 9 + 28
24 3,600,000 9 + 30 1
25 3,825,000 9 + 32
26 4,050,000 9 + 34
27 4,275,000 9 + 36
28 4,500,000 9 + 38 1 (max)
29 4,725,000 9 + 40
30 4,950,000 9 + 42
31 5,175,000 9 + 44
32 5,400,000 9 + 46 1
33 5,625,000 9 + 48
34 5,850,000 9 + 50
35 6,075,000 9 + 52
36 6,300,000 9 + 54 1
37 6,525,000 9 + 56
38 6,750,000 9 + 58
39 6,975,000 9 + 60
40 8,000,000 9 + 62 1
Total 12

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