This is where the rankings really get tough. It should be noted that I think that these top five romance options are all exceptional and should be experienced by every Baldur’s Gate 3 player at some point. If I have any knock against the Lae’zel romance, though, it’s that she, like Wyll, can take quite a while to warm up to, which can make the earlier stages of this relationship a bit less rewarding.
Unlike Wyll, though, I feel that the Lae’zel relationship ramps up in a slightly more organic way and generally has a much better pay-off. Learning to love Lae’zel as a character and companion means investing a lot of time in your relationship with her. As I previously noted, though, it’s not really a matter of her changing as she gets to know you but rather you changing as you get to know her. While Lae’zel certainly opens up a bit, it’s the ways you’ll grow to understand who she is and who she wants to be that ultimately make her so interesting.
While you can grow to love Lae’zel without pursuing a romantic relationship with her, I imagine most of those players who hold this character in higher regard have walked that particular path and discovered some of the things that make her so fascinating.
Unlike some of the other characters on this list, I don’t think you need to necessarily pursue a romantic relationship with Karlach to get the most out of her as a companion. She’s a fantastic character in her own right, and her romance subplot is really the flaming cherry on top of her exceptional overall story.
However, there is something to be said for how much Karlach’s general likability makes it relatively easy to genuinely fall in love with her. Because Karlach can’t really physically engage with you until you help solve her internal heating issues (I had a gaming laptop with a similar problem), much of your romance with Karlach actually involves resolving a slightly more traditional kind of character sidequest. I was also shocked that Karlach doesn’t simply need liquid to cool her inner fire, because she is undeniably and eternally thirsty.
Thankfully, learning about Karlach along the way is not only fascinating and often quite sweet, but it all leads to an eventual encounter with Karlach that is surprisingly tender given the heated…tensions that lead up to it. While some simply hate the tragic note this relationship ultimately ends on, I find that this whole relationship is not only unique within the context of this game but very true to the things that make Karlach such an interesting character.