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29

Not at all; Bards are a very flexible and potent class At least not if you allow an admittedly-large number of supplements. Even in straight Core, Bards are fairly middle-of-the-road (decidedly better than Fighter, Monk, or Paladin, decidedly worse than Cleric, Druid, or Wizard), though they are quite limited. But if you have a lot of books available, then ...


29

Yes! The initative roll is a dexterity ability check, and is intend to gain a benefit from "Jack of all Trades" At the beginning of every combat, you roll initiative by making a Dexterity check. Players Handbook p. 177


28

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 ...


26

Magic! Seriously, though, the bard knows how he does this even if we struggle to understand how it could be done. Lots of special abilities in a fantasy game are unexplainable. Nobody knows how to cast a fireball spell or turn undead either, and those remain an acceptable part of the system. The real problem we have is when we read something like this... ...


19

In such cases, it's often best to let the original author speak for themselves. Fortunately, Doug Schwegman does so at the start of his article where he introduces them to D&D. . . . I believe it is a logical addition to the D & D scene and the one I have composed is a hodgepodge of at least three different kinds, the norse ‘skald’, the celtic ...


19

Original celtic bards were actually historians. All of celtic tradition was oral, so someone had to remeber it and pass it on. The poetry and music were only added to make it easier to remember. We can imagine the D&D Bard as a kind of wandering historian-in-training. He already knows some of the songs/stories, but has a long way to go - as he gains ...


18

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.


17

Yes, the bard gets 1/2 proficiency to initiative. In 5e all checks are ability checks. This is why every check in published materials is listed as Strength (athletics). If you can add an ability modifier to a roll, it's an ability check (unless it's a saving throw or an attack, those aren't ability checks). If you happen to have a skill related to that ...


11

I did some research and cannot find any sort of official ruling for this. Although it seems to me the the answer is clear. You can whisper messages and receive whispered replies. Those nearby can hear these messages with a DC 25 Perception check. You point your finger at each creature you want to receive the message. When you whisper, the whispered ...


10

The bard can freely attack while performing as long as the methods of attack and performance do not conflict. Description of the ability refers to the skill with the following text included: You are skilled at one form of entertainment, from singing to acting to playing an instrument. The game does not go too deep into details about one-handed, ...


10

Within 3.5e D&D you cannot use an inaudible performance for Bardic Music. Bardic Music specifically states (from the d20 SRD): While these abilities fall under the category of bardic music and the descriptions discuss singing or playing instruments, they can all be activated by reciting poetry, chanting, singing lyrical songs, singing melodies, ...


10

These abilities don't "require concentration checks". The bard entry just says they "require concentration" - meaning that you must spend a standard action each round to keep them going. Also, according to the concentration entry, unless specified otherwise, you only make concentration checks when some specific distraction (typically damage) might make ...


10

I would challenge you to try thinking of your female NPCs the same way you think about your male NPCs. Right now, her main character trait is that she's "pretty and attracts the sights of men." That's pretty reductive. I doubt you'd start out describing any of your male characters that way. That doesn't mean she can't be pretty if you want her to be, but you ...


9

I agree: though, strict-RAW, it must be a whisper, the spell certainly seems to just be saying it has to be at least a whisper. I’ve always had it transmit all vocal speech; the whisper bit seemed only to prevent you from having silent communication à la telepathic bond.


9

Most of the musical instrument magic items are flutes, lutes, harps, horns, lyres, sitars, mandolins, bandores and drums. They are usually listed under wondrous items and will clearly say that a bard can use them as an implement and how they are used as such. You can find them in the PHB2.


8

In a sense, I agree with "Hey I Can Chan". It works basically because the rules say it works. But as comments point out, that is not very mentally satisifying. So, I know how it works mechanically, but how I can I envision it? I suspend my disbelief easily for a fireball, because that is an accepted trope and I have a pretty decent idea of how to ...


8

Nowhere in the Pathfinder Core Rulebook does it say that you can't take 10 on a knowledge check. By RAW, one can take 10 on any roll (except Use Magic Device), provided they are not under stress, in combat, in immediate danger, etc. - unless you have the explicit ability to do so. The wording is, admittedly, a bit unclear for Lore Master, but that's ...


8

You could use the Arcane Talent feat to learn spark, a 0-level spell with the [fire] descriptor. The wording of the feat should satisfy the necessary requirements: Choose a 0-level spell from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. You can cast this spell three times per day as a spell-like ability. The Paizo FAQ clarifies that spell-like abilities count as ...


8

In the Public Playtest, which you can still get if you buy one of the D&D Next modules, called it Bardic Performance. There were two abilities under Bardic Performance Call to Battle and Inspire Competence. Call to Battle allowed the Bard and his allies within 25 feet to add a d4 for damage. The die increased at higher levels. Inspire Competence ...


7

Yes, Charge DDI is not a move action, it is a standard action that allows you to move your speed and then attack.


7

According to the Dungeons and Dragons Bard Wiki, the Bard as a class draws a lot of inspiration from the Pied Piper of Hamlin, which makes a lot of sense if you think about it mechanically. Someone who, in a mythological/archetypal standpoint, used wit and music to magic away children. In addition to that, the Bard finds inspiration from other fictitious ...


7

A single, lone, non-multiclassed bard, is nowhere nearly as powerful as a Wizard, Cleric or Druid, especially in Core (but see below). Still, he is much more versatile than a fighter and it is a property of individual game and individual player if a character/class suffers more from a lack of raw power or from a lack of versatility. Bard's roles are social, ...


7

The basic Sense Motive skill gives you: "You know that's not true" or "You know the person is enchanted." Sometimes that's enough. If it's a yes/no statement, knowing that yes is a lie gives you the answer. Or perhaps everyone nearby trusts your assessment of the truth over their own. However, that doesn't cover everything. True confession gives you two ...


7

Yes, but it's Dumb. Bardic music specifies by RAW that the music must be audible. Attach bells to your dancer, and by RAW, you are doing it. * cha cha * That's easily dealt with. More problematic is that Bardic Music'ing is a standard action, and while it does linger for 5 rounds after you do it, that's lame. There is no reason why your chaos monk/bard ...


6

I read it exctly like you did. What is this extra check worth, then? Sense motive just allows you to know someone is not telling you the truth. Tricking him into telling the truth and even revealing who instructed him to lie should never be a result of the sense motive check, thus the utility of the True Confession ability.


6

Yes and no. Bards are designed to be flexible; they're a jack-of-all-trades, with an emphasis in being The Face. They have magic - but they're weaker than wizards and clerics. They can have rogue skills - but they're weaker than thieves, because they have multiple important stats and can't just max out dexterity. They can fight - but not as well as ...


6

Here's a build, but there are holes left in it. Basically anything not being used for a deliberate purpose, I left blank, assuming you'll fill in what makes sense. There are also a lot of things marked as suggestions, usually because something isn't necessary, but would be useful. Starting Race: Human Stats: Str: 16 Dex: 13 Con: 12 Int: 14+2 (human!) ...


6

The Healers's Brooch definitely works as it's only pre-req is the regaining of hit points. The other two you mention are predicated on the healing keyword. Skald's Aura has this keyword so they both work. The basic rule is to determine whether or not the power/feat/etc specifically mandates the healing keyword and whether or not the power/item/etc you are ...


6

Instead of looking for fantasy in the modern-fiction sense, I'd start by looking under collections of fairy tales and folk tales. They're widely studied, freely available, and often well-suited to being retold in generic forms or other settings. And this is the source material from which all modern fantasy draws. I recommend looking for children's ...


6

When my player rolls and succeeds I start my answer as follows: "Actually you have heard an old gypsy prayer song back in Manigmar about the mountain gods and it seems to you now, in light of the info you just gained, that they might refer to a coven of wizards hiding up there somewhere. There is a circle of ancient stone faces in ..." So basically the bard ...



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