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Are there any officially stated reasons why the bard was removed from 4.0 main class roster ?

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closed as unclear what you're asking by doppelgreener, LitheOhm, wax eagle, C. Ross Jul 19 '13 at 17:00

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Voting to close as unclear. The bard IS part of the main class roster, it just isn't in PHB1. – doppelgreener Jul 19 '13 at 10:51
PHB 1, 2, and 3 were all released within the same month. If anything falls outside and informal (and unofficial) "4.0 main class roster" it would be classes like the Vampire that were D&D Insider exclusives or the Essentials line classes such as the Fighter(Knight) or Ranger(Scout). – Joshua Aslan Smith Jul 19 '13 at 18:11
up vote 28 down vote accepted

It wasn't, it just wasn't in the first players handbook. Player's Handbook 2 defines classes for Avenger, Barbarian, Bard, Druid, Invoker, Shaman, Sorcerer & Warden.

My first, and so far only, D&D4 character is a bard. It works as a "Leader" type role, balanced between healing/buffs and some shiny damage effects.

I'd guess that they got stripped from the first 8 classes in PHB1 so that could have two examples of each of the new "Roles" attribute (Leader/Striker/Defenders/Controllers)

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PHB1 has 3 strikers, 1 controller. So balance wasn't a real driving factor. – anon186 Aug 23 '10 at 15:06
My assumption, which is not officially stated anywhere so it isn't worth a real answer, is that they a) wanted to have two leaders to drive home the point that the cleric wasn't mandatory, and b) they wanted to do the warlord to show how all power sources were equal. – Bryant Aug 23 '10 at 15:19

The first Player's Handbook was meant to capture the most accessible, easily explained character classes and races. The awesomeness of the bard requires a little more experience with D&D to really appreciate.

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I like your style ! :) – Stefano Borini Aug 23 '10 at 17:58
Aw! Thank you. :) – Jadasc Aug 23 '10 at 18:10
I think it would be even better to put some bold in the awesomeness of the bard :) – Stefano Borini Aug 26 '10 at 20:45

It's in PH2. As a marketing approach, they have to reserve classes (races/monsters/etc) that have a following for later books to drive sales. Also, see this wiki article for a history of the D&D bard.

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I don't think releasing the Bard in the PHB2 was just a marketing play; I think they had to spend more time re-work it a little more than the other classes given there's no more Perform skill. (but it was definitely also a marketing play :D) – LeguRi Aug 23 '10 at 14:51
Again, not denying the marketing aspect, but D&D Insider definitely mitigates that, as there is no need to buy PHB2 to play a bard--you can just build it in the character builder. – Numenetics Aug 23 '10 at 14:54

This is not an official answer, but they could only include so many classes due to space constraints. They wanted to include a lot of the old favorite classes, but also wanted to include a few of the new classes to show what 4E as a system is capable of doing. Something had to be cut from the first Player's Handbook. They chose the Bard class along with others.

The only reason this is an issue at all is because everyone has their favorite class and they feel slighted if it their favorite that is cut; in this case the Bard.

Also it is my understanding that the Bard class was not completed by the time 4E was released. There were a few thematic issues they had to resolve for the class and they decided to devote their time elsewhere.

As a side note the Bard was not an initial class when D&D 1st edition first appeared as a game. It came out later, so the precedent for the Bard class not appearing in the first book had already been set. Some Old-timers do not see the Bard as a core class.

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Well, there's a limited amount of space, and I think the bard just wasn't ready to go by the time the first PHB was ready, but it was one of the first classes to end up in DDI, long before the PHB 2 came out. I definitely consider it to be part of the main class roster.

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The reason the Bard was removed from PHB1 was the emphasis on 4e of giving every class a distinct role, and making sure everyone had something interesting to do each round. Several classes, particularly as they were handled in earlier editions didn't fit in to this paradigm (although the Bard could have arguably been a leader instead of the Warlord, but the Warlord was one aspect of the Bard highlighted). There was likely also some "market research" going on, showing the Bard wasn't popular (The Gamers: Dorkness Rising is anvilicious about that), so it may have been taken out because most players wouldn't have gone for it (again, according to their market research, although Mike Mearls mentioned that there may have been a problem with that logic, in his example he talked about Gnomes though).

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