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Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance Beginner’s Guide: Tips, Tricks & Strategies to Uncover All Secrets

Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance first graced gamers with their presence on December 4, 2001 on the Playstation 2 and Xbox and later GameCube. Developed by Snowblind Studios and Black Isle Studios, this action role-playing hack and slash video game became a commercial success and won the 2001 Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences award for “Best Role-Playing Game.”

The whole franchise was a beloved one and brought many technical advancements to role-playing video games in the past and continues to do so in the present. So it was no wonder that this game reappeared in the hands of RPG fans 20 years later in the form of a mobile game by Interplay Entertainment.

baldur's gate dark alliance intro

Tracing its roots way back from the very first game in 1998, the Baldur’s Gate franchise is set in the Forgotten Realms, a world formed from the tabletop game created by Wizards of the Coast known as Dungeons and Dragons. The game begins with your character arriving at Baldur’s Gate, a town of myth and legend on the Sword Coast. You wander the streets at night, finding it odd how silent and deserted the place was when you were suddenly attacked and mugged by thieves, knocking you unconscious.

As you come to, a couple of guards inform you about what happened and warn you about the thieves that roam the streets after sunset. They direct you to the Elfsong Tavern to rest. Once there, you meet Alyth and Ethon and find out that those thieves have formed a guild and a guild war is currently waging. Eager to get your belongings back, you set off to the sewers to find this guild while helping the people of Baldur’s Gate with their own problems along the way.

baldur's gate dark alliance intro 2

For people who are new to the game and those that may find benefit from a few tips and tricks from fellow players, this article is for you! We’ve taken what we’ve learned and discovered from the game and compiled it in this comprehensive Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance guide to aid you in your quest.

1. Choose Your Character

baldur's gate dark alliance character choice
Which character best suits your gameplay style?

In the game, there are three characters to choose from: Vahn the Human Arcane Archer, Kromlech the Dwarven Fighter, and Adrianna the Elven Sorceress. Each one of them has its own unique traits, advantages, and disadvantages. To help you choose which one fits the best for your gameplay style, we’ve written down what we’ve discovered about each of them:

Vahn the Human Arcane Archer

baldur's gate dark alliance archer
A Human archer that can imbue their arrows with magic.

This character has mostly average starting stats and is beginner-friendly. Among all three characters, this character has the highest Wisdom, which contributes to his 3% bonus experience, and the highest Carrying Capacity, allowing him to carry the most items. This stat is very important to the Human Archer since you’ll need to carry around as many arrows as you can to make use of your bow and archer skills.

This character also has several skills that allow him to conjure magic on his arrows, letting him deal elemental damage against his enemies. In multiplayer, he does his best work from afar while another character takes the enemies’ blows.

However, because he is a well-rounded character, they have no problems taking in damage and surviving through difficult dungeons alone, even if he doesn’t have the high stat benefits the other two characters have.

Attacking with a bow and arrow in Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance tends to be tricky at times, but his initial feats compensate for it. These feats are Targeting and Accuracy, which not only make it easier to target enemies with a bow but also increase your attack damage with it. However, this character starts with a rusty dagger, just like the other characters, so you’ll have to buy yourself a bow from the Shop Keeper or get one from killing enemies.

Stats & Bonuses

Base Attack4
Carrying Capacity170
Strength17+3 hit / +3 damage
Intelligence11+2 max energy
Wisdom13+3% experience
Dexterity15+2 armor
Constitution14+2 hit points
Charisma11+0% buy / sell


AccuracyPassiveImproves accuracy of ranged attacks.1
TargetingPassiveProvides a targeting line to make aiming easier.1
Arcane QuiverPassiveHalves the weight of all arrows carried.1
Flame ArrowsActiveEnchants arrows with a flaming aura to increase damage.5
Ice ArrowsActiveEnchants arrows with an icy aura, increasing damage and freezing opponents.5
Shock ArrowsActiveEnchants arrows with an electric aura, increasing damage and shocking opponents.5
Hail of ArrowsPassiveAllows you to fire multiple arrows at once.5
Enchant ArrowsPassiveEnchants every normal arrow you fire, causing more damage.5
Exploding ArrowsPassiveEnchants an arrow, making it explode upon striking its target.5
RepulsionActiveEmanates a circular wall of force from the caster, pushing nearby opponents back.5
DodgePassiveImproves your armor class by one point.5
Deflect MissilesPassiveGives you a chance of automatically blocking missile weapons.5
EndurancePassiveIncreases carrying capacity.5
ToughnessPassivePermanently increases hit points by 3.5
WillpowerPassivePermanently increases mana by 5.5
MeditationPassiveIncreases mana regeneration rate.5
Intestinal FortitudePassiveIncreases health regeneration rate.5
Combat ReflexesPassiveIncreases attack rate.5
Death BlowPassiveIncreases damage of critical hits.5
Improved CriticalPassiveIncreases chances of landing a critical hit.5

Kromlech the Dwarven Fighter

baldur's gate dark alliance fighter
A Dwarven fighter that can deal massive blows and withstand heavy enemy attacks.

This character excels the most in melee attacks and has the highest Health, Base Attack, Damage, Strength, and Constitution. He deals heavy damage and has skills that can make him more effective when using axes, warhammers, and hammers.

His proficiency with shields along with his high HP and Constitution makes him a great Tank when playing in multiplayer. His initial feat, Intestinal Fortitude, gives him an increased HP regeneration rate, letting him heal up quickly without the use of Healing Potions. This character fits well with players who like to face their battles head-on, using brute force to smite their foes.

However, they also have the lowest Energy, Armor, Intelligence, Wisdom, Dexterity, and Charisma. His low Energy and Intelligence means he doesn’t get to use his skills as often as the other characters and may need to stock up on Rejuvenation Potions.

His Low Wisdom means he doesn’t get any bonus experience at the start like the other characters. His low Dexterity means he has a low Base Armor and may need to invest in armor to survive certain enemies. Lastly, his low Charisma does not give him any discounts or bonuses when buying or selling items to a Shopkeeper.

Stats and Bonuses

Base Attack5
Carrying Capacity150
Strength18+4 hit / +4 dmg
Intelligence10+0 max energy
Wisdom11+0% experience
Dexterity12+1 armor
Constitution15+2 hit points
Charisma10+0% buy / sell


DodgePassiveImproves your armor class by one point.5
EndurancePassiveIncreases carrying capacity.5
ToughnessPassivePermanently increases hit points by 3.5
Bull RushActiveCharges towards an enemy, inflicting tremendous damage.5
AccuracyPassiveImproves accuracy of ranged attacks.1
TargetingPassiveProvides a targeting line to make aiming easier.1
WillpowerPassivePermanently increases mana by 5.5
MeditationPassiveIncreases mana regeneration rate.5
Intestinal FortitudePassiveIncreases health regeneration rate.5
Combat ReflexesPassiveIncreases attack rate.5
Death BlowPassiveIncreases damage of critical hits.5
Improved CriticalPassiveIncreases chances of landing a critical hit.5
Sword and FistPassiveIncreases hit and damage by 1 for each rank attained.5
Improved BlockPassiveAllows you to do a continuous block with a melee weapon as if it was a shield when none is equipped.1
Shield ExpertPassiveIncreases armor bonus by 1 for each rank attained as long as you have a shield equipped.5
Whirlwind AttackActiveLaunches a circular attack with a two-handed axe or hammer.1
Clangeddin’s FistActiveStrikes the ground with a warhammer to damage all nearby foes.1

Adrianna the Elven Sorceress

baldur's gate dark alliance sorceress
An Elven sorceress that can cast magic to fight her enemies.

This character is the most difficult one to use and is recommended for veterans of the game or players who might want an extra challenge. She has the highest Energy and Intelligence, letting them use their magic skills more often than other characters. However, with this reliance on magic comes a reliance on Rejuvenation Potions, at least until they unlock Meditation, a passive skill that improves her mana regeneration rate.

She also has the highest Charisma, giving her a 10% discount and bonus for buying and selling in shops. Her initial feat, Burning Hands, lets her fight her foes by using offensive fire magic. She shines the most when she is paired with another player who can protect her from enemies as she conjures her powerful magic.

The downside to this character is that they have the lowest Health, Base Attack, Damage, Carrying Capacity, Strength, and Constitution. Having the lowest Health and Constitution makes it hard for them to survive heavy blows so you’ll need to invest in good armor to protect her.

Having the lowest Strength, Base Attack and Damage makes her melee attacks weak and ineffective against enemies, especially those with tough armor. Having the lowest Carrying Capacity means she cannot have too many items in her inventory at a time.

Stats and Bonuses

Base Attack2
Carrying Capacity130
Strength13+1 hit / +1 dmg
Intelligence17+8 max energy
Wisdom12+3% experience
Dexterity14+2 armor
Constitution13+1 hit points
Charisma15+10% buy / sell


Magic MissilesActiveLaunches missiles, dealing 3-6 damage per missile. 1 missile is added every two character levels.1
Burning HandsActiveShoots flames from her hands, dealing fire damage to enemies5
Melf’s Acid ArrowActiveShoots a magical acid arrow from her hand, dealing acid damage to enemies.5
FireballActiveShoots a fireball that detonates upon striking a target, damaging nearby enemies.5
SnowblindActiveShoots a cone of frost, dealing cold damage to enemies.5
Lightning BoltActiveShoots a bolt of lightning, dealing lightning damage to enemies.2
Otiluke’s Icy SphereActiveShoots a ball of ice, dealing cold damage and freezing all nearby enemies.5
Ball LightningActiveShoots a ball of electricity, dealing lightning damage to all nearby enemies.5
Fire ShieldActiveCreates a flaming wreath around the caster, damaging enemies that come close.5
Meteor SwarmActiveMakes meteors rain down around the caster, damaging nearby enemies.1
Mordenkainen’s SwordActiveCreates a floating magical sword which attacks nearby enemies.5
Intestinal FortitudePassiveIncreases health regeneration rate.5
WillpowerPassivePermanently increases mana by 5.5
MeditationPassiveIncreases mana regeneration rate.5
AccuracyPassiveImproves accuracy of ranged attacks.1
TargetingPassiveProvides a targeting line to make aiming easier.1

2. Choose the Difficulty That Works for you

baldur's gate dark alliance difficulty
Choose wisely. You won’t be able to change it later!

Before you start the game, it will ask you what difficulty you’d like to play between Easy, Normal and Hard. In our playthrough, we picked Normal and found that we struggled a lot even at that level, so don’t underestimate these modes. If you want to have a stress-free, fun time with just the right amount of challenge, Easy mode is the best option.

If you want a little more challenge, which may include multiple deaths in certain areas, Normal mode is a good choice. Hard mode on the other hand is something we would only recommend if you’ve played through the game before or have Player 2 to help you get through the game. You may need to get yourself a Bluetooth controller for this since the game only allows local co-op gameplay.

3. Invest in Equipment

Prioritize Armor

baldur's gate dark alliance armor
Strong Armor can keep you alive for longer!

As your enemies get tougher, so should you. With all the money you earned from dungeon crawling, you should have a good amount of money saved up. Don’t spend them all on just potions or arrows! Put some aside for better armor, so that you won’t need to constantly take in potions, and on better weapons, so that you can bring down your enemies more effectively.

From our experience playing in Normal mode, we realized that the highest priority among equipment must always be armor, whether it be a shield or a chest plate. Once you’ve got one or both of those, only then should you think about buying a new weapon, especially since enemies themselves can drop better weapons than armor at the start.

Always Have a Melee Weapon and a Long-Ranged Weapon

baldur's gate dark alliance weapons
Melee and Long-Ranged Weapons both have their uses.

It doesn’t matter if you are a Human Archer, a Dwarven Fighter, or an Elf Sorceress. In this game, both melee and long-ranged weapons have a role in your gameplay. You don’t need to choose only one or the other because you can equip both of them and switch by clicking on the small arrow next to the attack button. Both of these weapons have their own advantages and disadvantages:

Pros and Cons of Melee Weapons

baldur's gate dark alliance melee weapons
Use melee weapons for close combat against charging enemies.

While the Dwarven Fighter relies on melee weapons and will be using them the most, the Human Archer and the Elven Sorceress can find a use for it when dealing with weak enemies or enemies that like to get close and personal. They’re also great for emergencies when you’re out of arrows to fire or mana to use magic.

Melee weapons are best partnered with a shield in order to block attacks. Dwarven Fighters who are capable of wielding two-handed weapons may forgo this as long as they have armor with good stats and an abundant number of potions in their bag.

baldur's gate dark alliance melee weapons 2
Melee weapons can leave you vulnerable to enemy attacks.

The downside of melee weapons is how vulnerable your character becomes while fighting. Even if you have a shield equipped, your enemies will have an opportunity to damage you every time you attack.

Aside from the added overall defense, the only time your shield becomes useful in battle is when you use it to block. But when you do, you can’t damage the enemy. You’ll need a good balance of using your shield and weapon to protect yourself while still dealing blows.

A great way to do this is to observe how quickly your current enemy attacks and find their resting gaps in between. Once you’ve found their rhythm, use your shield when they are about to attack, use your weapon straight after then repeat until you’ve defeated your enemy.

Pros and Cons of Long-Ranged Weapons

baldur's gate dark alliance ranged weapons
Use long-ranged weapons for far away enemies with spears and bows.

Long-ranged weapons may be the Human Archer’s expertise, but the Dwarven Fighter and Elf Sorceress would still benefit greatly from having them as their second weapon. Many enemies you will face dealing their attacks from far away. Rushing towards them to attack them may work in some cases, but if you are outnumbered, it can get very ugly really quickly.

You could end up dying before even landing a single hit. The Elf Sorceress has the advantage of conjuring up magic to deal with them, but if she runs out of mana and there are no mana potions for her to use, she’ll be left with no other options to fight.

baldur's gate dark alliance ranged weapons 2
Ranged weapons forces you to put distance between you and your enemies before you can attack them.

Long-ranged weapons take a bit of time to get used to, even when you’ve already learned the Targeting and Accuracy feats. Still, having long-ranged weapons give you the added benefit of being mobile and able to hide behind obstacles like crates and walls to block other long-ranged attackers’ hits.

However, using these weapons forces you to always be on your feet, running from enemies and only being able to attack them at a good distance where they cannot fight back. You’ll need to take advantage of your surroundings and lead your enemies in positions where they can either not move close to you or cannot hit you.

But like magic with its mana potions, your long-ranged attacks are limited to the number of arrows you hold. Thankfully, these tend to be cheaper than mana potions and drop-in stacks from enemies.

4. Mind Your Inventory

Sell What You Don’t Need

baldur's gate dark alliance inventory
Do you really need all that junk inside your inventory?

As you play through the game, you’ll pick up a lot of items from killing enemies, breaking props, and opening chests. Each character has their own carrying capacity which is tied to their Strength stat and it’s important to pay attention to it so you don’t go over it. Once you do, you’ll get Encumbered and won’t be able to move around. For that, you’ll have two options: drop some items or sell your stuff.

If you’re just starting out, we highly recommend not dropping any items and instead selling them to earn some money. Unlike in other games, enemies don’t respawn and are limited. If you need extra cash later, you won’t be able to get any enemies to kill. But before you go selling off everything in your bag, make sure to check the stats of any weapons or armor you picked up. Some of these items may be worth keeping and equipping.

Always Have Potions

It’s always good to have potions handy for emergencies, especially Healing Potions, Rejuvenation Potions, and Recall Potions.

baldur's gate dark alliance potion
Healing Potions for Health, Rejuvenation Potions for Mana or Energy!

Even when you have the best armor in the game possible, having a few Healing Potions on hand can save you from certain death. They can get you far into the dungeon without having to reload your save when you die. Mana Potions on the other hand may not be as essential if you’re using a Dwarven Fighter or even a Human Archer, but it is a must for an Elven Sorceress since magic is her strongest weapon.

While she can still fight with her weapon, the Elven Sorceress will not be as effective unless she’s using her magic. But be warned: these potions do not regenerate your HP and Mana instantly. It takes a few seconds to fully regenerate so it’s best to keep yourself away from enemies while it does or have your shield up to block incoming attacks.

If you ever find yourself without any of these two potions, it’s recommended to stay in a room with no enemies and wait for your HP and or Mana to naturally regenerate over time. Alternatively, you can climb up a box and wait there since enemies can’t seem to attack you from there.

baldur's gate dark alliance recall potion
Use Recall Potions to quickly go back and forth between the dungeon and the Tavern!

Recall Potions on the other hand do not directly help with battles but are used to quickly go back to the most recent safe place you’ve visited such as the Tavern. You can use the same Recall Potion to teleport yourself back to the spot in the dungeon where you last used it. It is essential for quickly stocking up on supplies and selling loot you’ve collected from your adventure.

Always Have Arrows

baldur's gate dark alliance arrorws
You can’t use your bow without your arrows!

It’s always a good idea to have a good stock of arrows in your inventory just in case you encounter enemies that may be best defeated with a bow. An example of this situation is when we had to fight a row of kobolds with a ranged attack. With an Elven Sorceress, our Burning Hands couldn’t quite reach them and with a Dwarven Warrior, trying to charge it would kill him before he reaches the enemy. Sometimes a bow and arrow are all you need.

5. Take up Side Quests

baldur's gate dark alliance sidequest
More quests, more loot, more gold!

At the start of the game, you have the option of leaving the tavern and looking around town. We don’t recommend exploring at this point as there is no one to talk to and no place to enter or exit. We do recommend at least talking to Nebbish before venturing down into the Cellar to get an extra quest in your book. NPCs will occasionally pop up at the Tavern after finishing a part of the main quest so it’s a good idea to drop by each time to take on side quests. These side quests can usually be accomplished just by following the main quest and exploring other paths and rooms of the dungeon.

6. Save Often and in Multiple Slots

baldur's gate dark alliance save
When you see that journal, you know you just have to save!

Saving often in a game is a lesson many gamers have learned throughout the years, but in this game, it’s even more important than ever, especially if you’re playing in Normal or Hard mode. There will be many times that you will find yourself dying from the same enemy, especially if you’re still new to the game.

But don’t just save in one slot; save in multiple slots. You won’t know when you’ll have to go back in time to make a better purchase from the shop or get a better feat that can help you in a particular battle.

Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance likes to challenge their players to think about how they should approach each enemy and not just brute force their way to victory. Some fights may require you to fight them from afar and some may require you to charge head-on before they get a chance to kill you.

baldur's gate dark alliance boss
That wasn’t so smart after all…

You might think it would be smart to fight a boss, run away from it, then save so you could continue where you left off in case you die before you defeat it. However, if you do that and reload from that save, you will, unfortunately, find the boss at full health and you at the health that you saved at.

7. Never Rush in

baldur's gate dark alliance crowd
There’s just too many of them!

It always pays to be cautious, especially when dealing with mobs of enemies. One trick we’ve learned when dealing with multiple enemies is to lead a few of them at a time toward another room and kill them off before leading another batch. It is likely that not all enemies will be able to notice you if you did not enter all the way inside the room. This way, it’s not as overwhelming to deal with and you’ll avoid getting swarmed and outnumbered. This technique is very useful during boss fights.

8. Check Every Angle and Corner

baldur's gate dark alliance items
Can you see it?

Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance’s natural lighting and ambiance are dark, making it sometimes difficult to immediately spot items and props that can be interacted with. It becomes even more difficult when you’re playing it on a small phone screen. To make sure that you don’t miss an item, keep a close eye on the bottom center area of your screen as text will pop up whenever you’re near an item or interactable object. Coins are automatically collected when you walk over them unless they are inside a chest so walk all over the corpses of your enemies to make sure you didn’t miss any.

baldur's gate dark alliance map
That room has got to have some good treasure!

Don’t forget to take advantage of your two-finger gestures to change the angle of your camera. Sometimes important objects are blocked from your view by walls. It also helps to check the map every now and then for secret rooms that may not be immediately apparent to you. Some are hidden by walls and must be interacted with to reveal the entryway.

These hidden rooms will not show you a prompt to use your interact button so sometimes you just have to spam-tap that button until it opens. In other cases, the object that will allow you to open an entrance can only be found in a different room so keep your eyes peeled and investigate every nook and cranny.

9. Beware of Obstacles

baldur's gate dark alliance steam
Don’t step into the steam!

Sometimes you may encounter objects that seem innocuous and feel like it was just made to be part of the scenery when it is actually an obstacle that can damage you. Examples of these are bonfires and steam coming out of walls. Just like with props, always be cautious when encountering something for the first time.

10. Destroy Props to get Loot

baldur's gate dark alliance props
What’s inside? Break it to find out!

As an RPG staple, barrels, crates, pots, and other props may be filled with items or Gold so it’s always a good idea to destroy them to get their contents. Take note that you can only break the objects you encounter in dungeons and not the ones in town. But be warned: some of these props may explode upon hitting. Yellow barrels in particular can be ignited or hit to explode and will lower your HP. When encountering a new prop you’ve never seen before, make sure you have enough HP in case it hurts you.

11. If Lost, Follow the Corpses

baldur's gate dark alliance corpses
Corpses! Corpses everywhere!

In Baldur’s Gate, the corpses of the enemies you fought stay where they die. Use that to your advantage if you ever forget where you already explored, especially when you haven’t picked up the game for a while. Retracing your steps could also help you find loot and Gold that you weren’t able to take before.

baldur's gate dark alliance outro
Enjoy the game!

And this marks the end of our Beginner’s Guide to Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance! We hope that our article helps you on your journey to unlock the secrets within the city. Did you discover anything interesting in your travels? Is there a game you’d like us to cover? Let us know in the comment section below!