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HomeDiscoveryBaldur's Gate 3 - Illithid Powers Guide

Baldur’s Gate 3 – Illithid Powers Guide

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers are unique abilities that you can unlock for your team. It emphasizes the use of your mind (i.e. psychic force). However, you do need to gain points to make use of these abilities. Our guide discusses how you can unlock and use these spells and actions in the game. Likewise, please note that this article has been updated for the version 1.0 launch build.

Table of Contents [hide]

  • How to Unlock and Use Illithid Powers in Baldur’s Gate 3
    • Tips To Unlock Illithid Powers and Parasite Points
    • Illithid Powers List
      • Tier 1 Powers
      • Tier 2 Powers
    • Original (Early Access): Dreamlover and Illithid Powers Unlock

How to Unlock and Use Illithid Powers in Baldur’s Gate 3

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers are for characters whose brains have been infested by parasites, aka. tadpoles. These aren’t available from the get-go, and you might not even use these mechanics on certain characters. This is vastly different from the early access concept, which was relegated to a specific power per class.

Tips To Unlock Illithid Powers and Parasite Points

Here’s what you need to know about this feature:

  • The Illithid Powers skill tree isn’t available at the start of the game. In our case, this appeared only after we acquired our third parasite. These parasites drop from specific enemies, and each one adds a point that can be allocated to gain an ability. You can learn more in our Mind Flayer Parasite Specimens guide.
  • Once available, the main character can select various powers by opening the skill tree (“B” key). Those that are close to the center (i.e. Tier 1) are needed to unlock those further away (i.e. Tier 2).
  • Powers are unlocked on a per-character basis. As such, you need to use points sparingly, and only on characters/classes that really need them.
  • Your other companions will not have the skill tree panel visible. Instead, you may need to convince them via a dialogue check.
  • Certain companions, such as Jaheira and Halsin, don’t have this mechanic at all. That’s because they don’t host a Mind Flayer Parasite.
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Left: You can persuade companions about the benefits of using Illithid Powers; Right: Some companions simply don’t have this mechanic available.

Illithid Powers List

As mentioned earlier, the Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers have certain tiers. To unlock higher-tier nodes, you must obtain a lower-tier ability that’s connected. These connections are represented by synapses or frayed lines.

Tier 1 Powers

  • Psionic Overload (offensive action) – Attacks deal an additional 1-4 psychic damage, but you also take 1-4 psychic damage each turn.
  • Favorable Blessings (passive) – The first attack roll or ability check you make against a target also gains a bonus equal to your proficiency bonus.
  • Force Tunnel (offensive action) – Charge forward, pushing all objects and creatures away from you by four meters; does not provoke Opportunity Attacks.
  • Concentrated Blast (offensive action) – Can deal 3d6 psychic damage; you must be concentrating on another spell to cast this. If the target is also concentrating, you heal as much as the damage dealt.
  • Transfuse Health (support action) – Sacrifice half of your remaining hit points to heal a target for the same amount.

Tier 2 Powers

  • Ability Drain (passive) – Once per turn when you make an attack roll, the attack reduces the target’s ability by 1 point. The ability that’s reduced corresponds to your attack (i.e., melee for STR, ranged weapons for DEX, and spells affect WIS, INT, or CHA).
  • Luck of the Far Realms (passive) – When you make a successful attack roll, you can change that to a critical hit.
  • Charm (passive) – Charm an enemy to prevent them from attacking you until the next turn; uses a reaction.
  • Displace (passive) – Creatures that suffer fall damage due to your actions take 1-8 psychic damage.
  • Repulsor (offensive action) – Deals 2d6 force damage and pushes your target back by six meters.
  • Cull the Weak (passive/toggled) – Bringing an enemy down to fewer HP than your unlocked Illithid Powers automatically kills it; also deals 1-4 psychic damage to nearby creatures.
  • Psionic Backlash (passive) – When an enemy within nine meters casts a spell, you can use your reaction to inflict 1d4 psychic damage per spell level.
  • Shield of Thralls (support action) – Conjure a shield that gives a target 10 temporary HP; if the shield breaks, it can stun nearby enemies.
  • Perilous Stakes (support action) – Empower a target to also heal whenever it attacks, though it also becomes vulnerable to all types of damage.
  • Stage Fright (support action) – Targets have a disadvantage on attack rolls and they take 2-12 psychic damage whenever they miss; this is overcome if they succeed in an attack roll.
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Among the Illithid Powers in Baldur’s Gate 3, we suggest Favorable Beginnings and Luck of the Far Realms. The former improves your chances at a successful hit. The latter, meanwhile, helps ensure that you can land a critical from that hit. We’ve also got more info on events that transpire during Act 3. Click on the spoiler section below if you want:

Additionally, once you reach the game’s third act, you’ll have a chance to evolve and unlock more Illithid Powers. We’ve got details in our Emperor guide and high-tier powers guide. Sadly, since this occurs later in the campaign, the articles themselves do contain spoilers.

The nodes that you unlock can help you with the battles ahead.
The nodes that you unlock can help you with the battles ahead.

Original (Early Access): Dreamlover and Illithid Powers Unlock

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers are related to the True Soul/Illithid Wisdom mechanic. To unlock them, you’ll need to use Illithid Wisdom at least twice in specific conversations (which we’ve listed in the linked guide).

Next, do a long rest in your camp (i.e. click on the long rest button or select your camp when you have the world map opened). You’ll notice that your party members are ill. However, once you sleep, the Dreamlover, the NPC that you made during character creation, will visit you. You’re then granted new abilities.

Take note that Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers apply to all companions, even those who aren’t in your active party. Moreover, you get a unique ability depending on your class. It’s essentially a darker or twisted version of the class’ general mechanic/role. Likewise, many of these are bonus actions, which means you can still do a regular attack or spellcast after using them.

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Illithid Powers have a blood red icon, implying their dark and twisted nature.
Illithid Powers have a blood red icon, implying their dark and twisted nature.

List of Illithid Powers Per Class

These are the Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers that we know of:

  • Barbarian: Endless Rage – Deal +1d4 damage with each attack while Rage is active; receive +1d4 damage each turn; prevents Rage from prematurely ending since you’re guaranteed to take damage.
  • Bard: Stage Fright – AoE effect where enemies have a disadvantage on attack rolls, and they also take damage when they miss; targets can overcome this effect once they succeed in an attack roll.
  • Cleric: Survival Instinct – Heals for +3d4 HP if an ally reaches zero HP, preventing them from becoming unconscious.
  • Druid: Aberrant Shape – Shapeshift into an Intellect Devourer that can deal psychic damage.
  • Fighter: Psionic Pull – Pull one creature or object toward you.
  • Paladin: Fracture Psyche – Decrease your target’s Armor Class (AC) by -1 point.
  • Ranger: Force Tunnel – Charge and push away all objects and creatures along your path.
  • Rogue: Inkblot – Create a cloud of magical darkness and immediately activate Hide.
  • Sorcerer: Horrific Visage – Deal +1d4 damage for three turns to terrify a creature; gain +2 Sorcery Points.
  • Warlock: Supernatural Attraction – Teleport to another infected creature.
  • Wizard: Reflective Shell – Reflects all projectiles that target you for two turns.
Left: Fighter’s Psionic Pull; Right: Wizard’s Reflective Shell.

And that’s all you need to know about the Baldur’s Gate 3 Illithid Powers. We’ll update our guide soon as we discover more in the game, so stay tuned.

Baldur’s Gate 3 is filled to the brim with activities and mysteries. You’ll no doubt be part of an adventure that can take countless hours to complete. For other tips, you can visit our BG3 guides hub.



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