• "Grim Dawn" lets players pick a primary and secondary class
  • Players can choose to specialize heavily in one class instead of spreading their points
  • Classes that share the same themes tend to synergize best with each other

Like many ARPGs, “Grim Dawn” features a variety of playstyles tied directly to character classes. Each playstyle can be further refined by picking a secondary class after reaching a certain level.

These classes can be a little daunting for beginners, especially once the hybridization kicks in, so here’s a quick overview of the best options beginners can pick when starting the game for the first time.


The Soldier essentially serves as the main tank archetype for “Grim Dawn.” It’s a melee class that sacrifices a bit of DPS for better survivability.

Much of this class’ offensive abilities revolve around physical damage through basic attacks and attack modifiers. On the other hand, the Soldier’s defensive abilities are focused on its powerful bottom-tree passives.

These passive abilities make the Soldier an excellent second class pick as it doesn’t require much early investment to be fully effective.

The Soldier class in Grim Dawn
The Soldier class in Grim Dawn Crate Entertainment


The Demolitionist uses guns, magic and explosives to rain destruction from a distance. This class excels at inflicting area-wide fire and lightning damage, mowing down hordes of enemies with pistols, rifles, shotguns and crossbows, although they aren’t terrible with melee weapons either.

This is an extremely fun class for fans of the Ranger archetype or those who love to play with fire. It pairs well with any class that boosts elemental and ranged damage.


Nightblade fulfills the melee rogue archetype, and it focuses on lightning-fast attacks, agile movements and debilitating effects to take down enemies. Fans of dual-wielding melee weapons will love the NIghtblade’s basic-attack-centric playstyle.

The class has surprisingly high survivability thanks to Pneumatic Burst, which basically serves as a buff with an emergency heal. Overall, Nightblade is simple but effective, and it can carry players all the way to the end without much trouble.


The Arcanist is the most straightforward out of the caster classes. It plays similarly to mages in other games, wiping out swathes of enemies with torrents of elemental magic.

The class has access to a variety of single-target and AoE spells as well as some defensive skills that can turn the tide against a bad situation. It requires a little less finesse than other mage-type classes, but it also meshes with them really well in the later stages of the game.