Baldur's Gate

Missile Weapons

Missile weapons are a very efective way to deal with creatures in Baldur's Gate. When an entire party begins to focus fire on a target - even if brandishing lowly slings - shit dies. This guide will help a player compare and contrast the various ranged weapons available.

Name: Short Bow (No Damage)
Description: Short Bows are the most common type of missile weapon in Baldur's Gate, and they can fire any of the game's magical arrows. There is a wide selection available through all four titles, and several excellent top-end options, a few of which even create their own magical arrows. Short Bows are a good proficiency choice for any character interested in ranged combat.
Top Weapon: Short Bow of Gesen +4 (1d8+2)
Effects: +4 THACO, adds 1d8 electrical damage to arrows -or- fires 1d8+2 damage lightning bolts without ammo. It also grants the user 20% Electric resistance.
Name: Long Bow (No Damage)
Description: Long Bows are large missile weapons standing almost as tall as a man. Their size gives them improved range and power over a Short Bow in reality, but from a game mechanics standpoint, there is effectively no difference other than the proficiency used. Long Bows are a solid weapon choice, and some races get special bonuses when using them. The proficiency also allows the user to wield Composite Long Bows, making it more valuable and flexible.
Top Weapon: Taralash +5 (No Damage)
Effects: +5 THACO, increases movement speed by +2.

Name: Composite Long Bow (No Damage)
Description: Composite Long Bows are designed to allow the user to gain their strength bonus on arrow damage. Because of this, each Composite Long Bow has a minimum strength rating required to draw it, which is listed in the item description. The more required strength, the greater the bow's added damage. Composite Long Bows use the same proficiency line as Long Bows, enhancing their attractiveness.
Top Weapon:Heartseeker +3 (+2 Damage)
Effects: +3 THACO, +2 damage, additional +7 THACO bonus for one round once per day.
Name: Arrows (1d6)
Description: Arrows are the projectiles fired by Short, Long, and Composite Long Bows. They enjoy the best rate of fire and widest array of special effects of any projectile weapons in Baldur's Gate. Especially potent are the Arrows of Detonation and Arrows of Biting - the latter of which can clear entire rooms in seconds.

Projectile Name: Arrow (1d6)
Effects: The standard Wooden Arrow.

Projectile Name: Arrow +1 (1d6+1)
Effects: +1 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Arrow +2 (1d6+2)
Effects: +2 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Arrow +3 (1d6)
Effects: +3 THACO

Projectile Name: Arrow of Fire (1d6+1d2)
Effects: + 1d2 Fire damage.

Projectile Name: Arrow of Ice (1d6+1d2)
Effects: +1d2 Ice Damage.

Projectile Name: Acid Arrow (1d6+1d3)
Effects: +1d3 Acid Damage.

Projectile Name: Arrow of Piercing (1d6+6)
Effects: +6 Piercing damage if target fails save v.s. spell.

Projectile Name: Arrow of Dispelling (1d6)
Effects: Casts Dispel Magic on the Target.

Projectile Name: Arrow of Slaying (1d6)
Effects: Instantly kills any Ogre Magi it hits.

Projectile Name: Arrow of biting (1d6+30% Max life)
Effects: Target loses 30% of their HP over 20 seconds if it fails to save.

Projectile Name: Arrow of Detonation (1d6+6d6)
Effects: Arrow explodes into a 6d6 Fireball Spell.

Name: Light Crossbow (No Damage)
Description: Light Crossbows are smaller, concealable versions of the Heavy Crossbow. They enjoy an identical rate of fire and use the same bolts as the full sized weapons, the difference between them is merely cosmetic from a game-mechanics standpoint. Proficiency in Light Crossbows also works for Heavy Crossbows.
Top Weapon: Necaradan's Crossbow +3 (+3 Damage)
Effects: +3 THACO/Damage.

Name: Heavy Crossbow (No Damage)
Description: The Heavy Crossbow is the most damaging projectile weapon shot per shot, but is hindered by a low rate of fire compared to bows. Mitigating this somewhat is the fact that Crossbow Bolts deal more damage and have more potent effects than found on Flight Arrows or Sling bullets. Crossbows also gain enhanced damage from their enchantment bonus. Heavy Crossbow proficiency works for Light Crossbows giving the lime some flexibility.
Top Weapon: Firetooth +5 (1d8+5 Damage)
Effects: +5 THACO/Damage, +1d2 Fire Damage, If the Crossbow is unloaded, fires 1d8+5 damage Fire Bolts.
Name: Crossbow Bolts (1d8)
Description: Bolts are the projectiles fired from Heavy Crossbows, Light Crossbows, and Jan Jansen's Flasher Launcher. They are the most damaging single shot projectile in Baldur's Gate, and the magical variants are particularly potent. They fall behind Standard Bows in damage over time, but they pack an impressive punch in a short per shot comparison.

Projectile Name: Bolt (1d8)
Effects: Standard Wooden Crossbow Bolt.

Projectile Name: Bolt +1 (1d8+1)
Effects: +1 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Bolt +2 (1d8+2)
Effects: +2 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Bolt +3 (1d8)
Effects: +3 THACO.

Projectile Name: Bolt of Lightning (1d8+4d4)
Effects: +4d4 Lightning Damage.

Projectile Name: Bolt of Biting (1d8+30)
Effects: 30 damage over 15 seconds if the target fails it's save.

Projectile Name: Bolt of Polymorphing (1d8)
Effects: Turns target into a Squirrel if they fail their save.

Projectile Name: Kuo-Toa Bolts (2d6)
Effects: Target stunned 4 rounds if they fail a save v.s. spell.

Name: Sling (No Damage)
Description: Slings are small leather straps used to hurl rocks, bullets, and other small projectiles great distances at lethal velocities. Slings are amongst the few missile weapons useable by Priests and Druids, giving those classes some ranged combat options.
Top Weapon: Erinne Sling +5 (1d8+5 Damage)
Effects: +5 THACO/Damage, Conjures 5 +4 Sling Bullets once per day.

Name: Sling Bullets (1d4+1)
Description: Slings Bullets deal the low damage and have the fewest special effects of all projectile weapons. Be that as it may, Slings are the best missile weapons some classes are allowed, and while they don't pack a kick, they are plentiful, relatively inexpensive and better than nothing.

Projectile Name: Bullet (1d4+1)
Effects: Standard Stone Sling Bullet.

Projectile Name: Bullet +1 (1d4+2)
Effects: +1 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Bullet +2 (1d4+3)
Effects: +2 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Bullet +3 (1d4+4)
Effects: +3 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Bullet +4 (1d4+5)
Effects: +4 THACO/Damage.

Projectile Name: Sunstone Bullet (1d4+2 +2 Fire Damage)
Effects: +1 THACO/Damage, +2 Fire Damage.

Name: Throwing Darts (1d3)
Description: Throwing Darts are low damage missile weapons designed as a delivery system for nasty poisons or baleful magical effects. What they lack in raw damage, darts compensate for in nasty special effects - such as damage over time and stunning. They have a solid rate of fire, and gain strength damage bonuses, making them better than the base damage would otherwise indicate.

Projectile Name: Dart (1d3)
Effects: Standard Wooden Dart.

Projectile Name: Dart +1 (1d3+1)
Effects: +1THAC0/Damage.

Projectile Name: Dart of Wounding (1d3+20)
Effects: Target must save or take 20 damage over 20 seconds.

Projectile Name: Dart of Stunning (1d3)
Effects: Target must save or be stunned for 7 rounds.

Projectile Name: Asp's Nest (1d3+1 +40 Poison Damage)
Effects: +1THAC0/Damage, Target saves or takes 40 damage over 120 seconds.

Projectile Name: Crimson Dart +3 (1d3+3)
Effects: +3THAC0/Damage, returns to thrower after use.

Projectile Name: Dart +5 (1d3+5)
Effects: +5 Damage/THAC0.

Name: Throwing Dagger (1d4)
Description: Throwing Daggers are useful weapons that allow a Thief or Mage to employ a ranged or melee attack with a single weapon proficiency slot. There are poisoned throwing daggers that inflict damage over time, and magical variants that return to the user's hand after a throw. While low on the damage scale, throwing daggers tend to be fast, available early on and can be used with a shield or buckler.

Projectile Name: Throwing Dagger (1d4)
Effects: Standard Throwing Dagger.

Projectile Name: Poisoned Throwing Dagger (1d4+20 Poison Damage)
Effects: +20 Poison damage over 10 seconds if target fails a save.

Top Weapon: Firetooth +3 (1d4+3)
Effects: +3 THACO/Damage, Returns to users hand, +1d2 Fire Damage.

Name: Throwing Axe (1d6+1)
Description: Throwing Axes are powerful ranged weapons that deal serious damage and enjoy a decent rate of fire. More importantly, they share the Axe Weapon Proficiency, earning the character a quality ranged attack and solid melee attack all at once. There are several very powerful throwing axes, including one that mimics a Mace of Disruption in many respects.
Top Weapon: K’logarath +4 (1d6+4)
Effects: +4 THACO/Damage, Returns to users hand after a throw, target must save v.s. death or be knocked down and take 2d6 extra damage.
Name: Throwing Hammer (1d6+2)
Description: Throwing Hammers are a unique ranged option available only to dwarves in Baldur's Gate. In fact, there is only ONE Dwarven Throwing Hammer in the entire game. Still, it IS a potent weapon, and since it uses the same weapon proficiency as a regular War Hammer, a patient player can gain both missile and melee mastery for one spec.
Top Weapon: Dwarven Thrower +3 (1d6+5)
Effects: +3 THACO/Damage, +8 damage to Giants and Ogres, returns to thrower.