I am building a level 7 Exemplar Brawler/level 2 Dirge Bard. Exemplar gets Inspiring Prowess, which is effectively inspire courage with its effective Bard level equal to Brawler level -2.

Since I have actual levels of bard, do these stack for an effective bard level of 7 for this ability, or is it just considered a separate pool and I have two different sources of bardic inspiration to keep track of?


2 Answers 2



The Bard levels do not stack and you have to keep track of both abilities/pools separately.

Inspiring Prowess does not say that it stacks with Bard levels:

Inspiring Prowess (Ex): At 3rd level, an exemplar gains the ability to use certain bardic performances. She can use this ability for a number of rounds per day equal to 3 + her Charisma modifier; this increases by 1 round per brawler level thereafter. The exemplar’s effective bard level for this ability is equal to her brawler level – 2. At 3rd level, the exemplar can use inspire courage. At 11th level, the exemplar can use inspire greatness. At 15th level, the exemplar can use inspire heroics. Instead of the Perform skill, she activates this ability with impressive flourishes and displays of martial talent (this uses visual components). This ability otherwise functions as bardic performance; feats and other effects that affect bardic performance (such as the Extra Performance feat) apply to it. This ability replaces maneuver training and AC bonus.

But in order to stack, abilities need to specifically call out that they stack, as per this FAQ:

Channel Energy: If I have this ability from more than one class, do they stack?

No — unless an ability specifically says it stacks with similar abilities (such as an assassin's sneak attack), or adds in some way based on the character's total class levels (such as improved uncanny dodge), the abilities don't stack and you have to use them separately. Therefore, cleric channeling doesn't stack with paladin channeling, necromancer channeling, oracle of life channeling, and so on.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ If I GM'd this, I'd let you stack it. But alas, RAW isn't as nice. \$\endgroup\$
    – Gloweye
    Oct 19, 2021 at 15:03


Unless it is explicitly stated in the definition, abilities from different classes do not stack at all.

For example, if you are a wizard that gets cleric levels at some point, you cannot combine the spell slots of both classes into one pool - wizard spells go into the wizard spell slots, and cleric spells go into the cleric spell slots. The one exception to this is if you are a Mystic Theurge 10, which gets a special ability that lets you do exactly that, but using slots in this way requires using a slot a level above its normal level (for example, if you can cast fireball as a wizard and want to use cleric slots for it, you would need to use a level 4 slot).


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