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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    I don't really agree with the "Do everything" idea.

    Bards are skill monkeys and full casters that specialize in illusion and enhancement. Their damage is really atrocious. Archtypes that have tried to improve on that weakness didn't really succeed.

    Valor- Tanky Bard.
    Lore- Spell Bard.
    Glamour- Control bard.

  2. - Top - End - #32
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by sophontteks View Post
    I don't really agree with the "Do everything" idea.

    Bards are skill monkeys and full casters that specialize in illusion and enhancement. Their damage is really atrocious. Archtypes that have tried to improve on that weakness didn't really succeed.

    Valor- Tanky Bard.
    Lore- Spell Bard.
    Glamour- Control bard.
    I dunno, I think Swords and Whispers Bards do fine on the damage aspect of things. As long as you remember to use the Bard's strengths, and consider the damage you get from the archetype as a "balance" change than a "specialization" change, they do just fine.

    Sure, a Swords Bard isn't going to be outdamaging a Vengeance Paladin, but..you're a friggin' Bard. You can still do a million more things than the Paladin, who can only do one.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-21 at 06:35 PM.
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    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas Iíve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. Youíre a gem of the community here.
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    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes while maintaining balance with default options.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  3. - Top - End - #33
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    I dunno, I think Swords and Whispers Bards do fine on the damage aspect of things. As long as you remember to use the Bard's strengths, and consider the damage you get from the archetype as a "balance" change than a "specialization" change, they do just fine.

    Sure, a Swords Bard isn't going to be outdamaging a Vengeance Paladin, but..you're a friggin' Bard. You can still do a million more things than the Paladin, who can only do one.
    Eh, I mean. They do more damage, but they are also pretty commonly agreed upon to be the two worst archtypes. This is where I would rate success. The cost of doing damage is high enough to be considered a downgrade.

  4. - Top - End - #34
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Around here groups argue over who gets to play the bard.

    Almost all are lore though.

    Let me rephrase, I am fairly sure every one has been lore.

    They are just that good.

  5. - Top - End - #35
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    OP, I'll tell you, Bard is tied for my favorite class with Paladin. In combat, out of combat, you name it...bards are epic.

    Now, Solo some bards run in to problems. But when they fight in a group, theyre amazing. And the bigger the group, the better.

    I LOVE Lore bard, its my favorite class. You need to understand, Bard create soooo much. Cutting words turns hits into misses...all the time. And Bards get a LOT of Inspa dice once it shifts to short rest refresh.

    My last campaign, my bard was, honestly, the best in combat character.
    Our party was a Gloomstalker Ranger, a Shadow Monk, A Totem Barbarian, a Life Cleric, and me - a Lore Bard.

    I used magical secrets to get Counterspell and Crusaders mantle.

    So, try to understand, i put up crusaders mantle adding 1d4 damage per hit from everyone - so add up all the hits between the Barb, Ranger, and Monk - often times just from that Aura im passively doing like 6-8d4 damage.

    Now account for the idea of my meddling - Once per round i have a high chance of turning a hit into a miss with cutting words, or counterspelling a spell.

    Now account for my charms. We had a BIG fight where we were totally outmatched, and we were supposed to lose this fight. It was us 5 up against a Demon, 2 small hell hounds, 1 giant 3 headed hell hound, and 1 hill giant with a tree he was swinging as a club.

    Now, this fight the DM had planned for us to lose.

    But, in walks the Lore Bard. Hill giant, you say? They're not so wise, *Suggestion - "That's a MEAN dog! Kill that MEAN dog!"

    the Giant hell hound and the Hill Giant kill eachother (Giant kills hound, then bleeds from the hound's claws). Party smokes the regular hounds, gangs up on the Demon woman with skull whips.

    DM realizes Bard broke the encounter, Demon dimension door's out...Nope. Counterspell. Bad roll? Thats OK, i have Lucky feat. Oops, Bard rolled a 20 and broke the encounter.

    DM contemplates what loot we just got from this demon, and how to fix the story.




    Bards wont blow up the game with Damage, they'll break the encounters with creativity and manipulation. That's their combat roll.

  6. - Top - End - #36
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    HalflingRogueGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by sophontteks View Post
    Eh, I mean. They do more damage, but they are also pretty commonly agreed upon to be the two worst archtypes. This is where I would rate success. The cost of doing damage is high enough to be considered a downgrade.
    I don't really agree.

    Improving a bard's at-will resourceless damage output is a nice boon, and that's what Valor and Swords bards do. Of course, it depends on the nature of the campaign how much you need to conserve spell slots and thus how useful resourceless damage output is.

  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Flumph

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    In this campaign, there's lots of interactions with npcs and mystery-solving, but the dm has upped the challenge of combats by making stronger than normal encounters pretty much every time. Often, foes will get high bonuses to hit and do several dice-worth of damage on each attack. We've already lost our gunsmith artificer and nearly lost the hexblade the player replaced him with during that character's very first battle. We've had 2 other times were death saves have been required and my barbarian has nearly dropped 3 times in 5 sessions because of taking so much damage even with resistances. I want to do a bard, but I would need high survivability AND good damage to have a chance of not losing the character. I was hoping that the bard support spells and healing would help with this, but it sounds as if they're too fragile to work in this campaign. :(
    They're really not. You have a lot of ways to shut down an enemy, especially if you're playing a Lore Bard. Enemy engages you in melee? Cutting Words. Enemy casts a spell? You should probably have Counterspell as a Lore Bard at 6th level. Multiple enemies? Sleep/Hypnotic Pattern and throw out Cutting Words against an enemy you want to fall asleep. They can be squishy if you're just looking at numbers, but you have a lot of ways to shut down enemies that compensate for your relative squishiness.

    On top of that, you're less numerically squishy than wizards or sorcerers. You at least have some armor proficiency and better hit dice, and you have healing and can heal more on short rest.

    I've been in fairly dangerous combat situations as a Bard, and I've managed to stay alive by proactively and reactively shutting down my enemies. Damage isn't everything, and the Bard really sells that idea in 5E. You won't be doing as much damage as the Bard, but being able to lock down an enemy with Hold Person means that the party members that can deal damage will.

  8. - Top - End - #38
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    HalflingPirate

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Iíve got to disagree with the assertion that bards are buffing specialists. While a lore bard who puts all their resources into acquiring buff spells will be about the best buffer it is possible to be, any other configuration of the class falls behind the wizard, the cleric, or both.

    While bardic inspiration has been favorably compared to bless and guidance here, it doesnít take a genius to see that those abilities are far stronger due to the number of dice they can give for the resource expenditure. (Though bardic inspiration does have the nice boost of not requiring concentration)

    Further, bards donít have access to the best buff spells like stoneskin and haste, except through magical secrets. This means that to even catch up to a wizard in the buffing department, they have to spend their extraordinarily valuable class specific resource.

    Thus, by simple virtue of their spell list, Iíd argue that bards are not the best buffers in the game.

    Their situation is a bit better, but still not great in the debuffs department. A wizard again has a superior spell list (especially post xanatharís with frostbite as a vicious mockery knockoff), though bards can catch up if they want to blow their special resources on being as good, but not much better, than another class. The reason I say bards are better here than at buffs is the spell list differences are less obvious and problematic, and the cleric isnít also in the running here, getting basically zilch after the god-mode spell known as command.

    Do they still make adequate buff/debuffers with a mix of skill monkey thrown in? Certainly. Just not perhaps as good at either as their previous edition history might suggest.
    Last edited by Potato_Priest; 2019-05-21 at 08:11 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by No brains View Post
    See, I remember the days of roleplaying before organisms could even see, let alone use see as a metaphor for comprehension. We could barely comprehend that we could comprehend things. Imagining we were something else was a huge leap forward and really passed the time in between absorbing nutrients.

    Biggest play I ever made: "I want to eat something over there." Anticipated the trope of "being able to move" that you see in all stories these days.

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    QuickLyRaiNbow's Avatar

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by OutOfThyme View Post
    You won't be doing as much damage as the Bard, but being able to lock down an enemy with Hold Person means that the party members that can deal damage will.
    Not directly anyway. You can do quite a bit when you hit the hill giant with enemies abound.

  10. - Top - End - #40
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    What if I were to go the sharpshooter route? Would that allow for halfway decent damage? Is valor bard the only route to go without missing lots of spell slots and spell levels through multiclassing in order to get a second attack per turn?
    2nd attack per turn?

    Is that important when you're Polymorphing an enemy into a turtle?

    Think outside the box. Valor Bards get a 2nd attack I believe. That said I enjoy Lore Bards more for the flexibility. EVERY round of combat you will have an action and a bonus action to take then a "yeah DM, I use cutting words on that swing" reaction or "yeah, I Counterspell that" when the big bad guy is getting ready to cast Forcecage. Heck, steal Hellish Rebuke and/or Hex with Magical Secrets or Magic Initiate if you want for more fun.

    Think outside the box.

  11. - Top - End - #41
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    HalflingPirate

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Has anyone made a list of the bard-exclusive spells? The only ones I can think of are vicious mockery, dissonant whispers, and compulsion.
    Last edited by Potato_Priest; 2019-05-21 at 08:18 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by No brains View Post
    See, I remember the days of roleplaying before organisms could even see, let alone use see as a metaphor for comprehension. We could barely comprehend that we could comprehend things. Imagining we were something else was a huge leap forward and really passed the time in between absorbing nutrients.

    Biggest play I ever made: "I want to eat something over there." Anticipated the trope of "being able to move" that you see in all stories these days.

  12. - Top - End - #42
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    HalflingRogueGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by OutOfThyme View Post
    They're really not. You have a lot of ways to shut down an enemy, especially if you're playing a Lore Bard. Enemy engages you in melee? Cutting Words. Enemy casts a spell? You should probably have Counterspell as a Lore Bard at 6th level. Multiple enemies? Sleep/Hypnotic Pattern and throw out Cutting Words against an enemy you want to fall asleep.
    You can't use Cutting Words to detract from a saving throw.

    It would be insane if it did.

  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Devil

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    I think my real problem is that when it comes to odd effects that don't involve die rolls for damage, buffing or de-buffing that affect enemies, I find myself at a loss on how to use them. I tried polymorph but what's the point of turning someone into a frog in a basement if they'll just turn back into what they were the instant they take damage. I mean if you turn a troll into a frog and blast him with fire only for him to change back into a troll and not have his regenearation nullified, what's the point of using polymorph at all? Why have counterspell if enemies you face use powers instead of actual spells to counter? None of it makes sense to me.

    I'd rather have a fireball or lightning bolt that I know will likely do at least a little damage if they save then try hold person or banishment and have them succeed on their save, wasting my only action for a turn.
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

  14. - Top - End - #44
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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    What if I were to go the sharpshooter route? Would that allow for halfway decent damage? Is valor bard the only route to go without missing lots of spell slots and spell levels through multiclassing in order to get a second attack per turn?
    Look, if a high damage dealer is what youíre looking for, donít play a Bard. At best, a Bard is middle of the pack when it comes to damage. But damage is a secondary part of their job.

  15. - Top - End - #45
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    I think my real problem is that when it comes to odd effects that don't involve die rolls for damage, buffing or de-buffing that affect enemies, I find myself at a loss on how to use them. I tried polymorph but what's the point of turning someone into a frog in a basement if they'll just turn back into what they were the instant they take damage. I mean if you turn a troll into a frog and blast him with fire only for him to change back into a troll and not have his regenearation nullified, what's the point of using polymorph at all? Why have counterspell if enemies you face use powers instead of actual spells to counter? None of it makes sense to me.

    I'd rather have a fireball or lightning bolt that I know will likely do at least a little damage if they save then try hold person or banishment and have them succeed on their save, wasting my only action for a turn.
    Why turn an enemy into a frog. Save or suck spells, well, suck. Use polymorph to turn your nearly-dead tank into a full-health T-rex.

  16. - Top - End - #46
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    Devil

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by sophontteks View Post
    Why turn an enemy into a frog. Save or suck spells, well, suck. Use polymorph to turn your nearly-dead tank into a full-health T-rex.
    No dinos allowed in most of our campaigns, sad to say. We've only had a single one that had zombified t-rex mutants.
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

  17. - Top - End - #47
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    Devil

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hail Tempus View Post
    Look, if a high damage dealer is what youíre looking for, donít play a Bard. At best, a Bard is middle of the pack when it comes to damage. But damage is a secondary part of their job.
    I just wanted a bard for the good out-of-combat skills. Maybe mc a few bard levels on a different class if that's the case. Maybe a sorc with a few bard levels?
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

  18. - Top - End - #48
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    I think my real problem is that when it comes to odd effects that don't involve die rolls for damage, buffing or de-buffing that affect enemies, I find myself at a loss on how to use them. I tried polymorph but what's the point of turning someone into a frog in a basement if they'll just turn back into what they were the instant they take damage. I mean if you turn a troll into a frog and blast him with fire only for him to change back into a troll and not have his regenearation nullified, what's the point of using polymorph at all? Why have counterspell if enemies you face use powers instead of actual spells to counter? None of it makes sense to me.

    I'd rather have a fireball or lightning bolt that I know will likely do at least a little damage if they save then try hold person or banishment and have them succeed on their save, wasting my only action for a turn.
    A party I DM for is fighting a Lich and 2 Warlocks. Imagine the joy of turning any one of the 3 into a turtle until the others can be dealt with. ALSO Polymorph can be a virtual healing spell.

    Turn them into a turtle, feed em alcohol and see how the DM rules for fun.

  19. - Top - End - #49
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    I just wanted a bard for the good out-of-combat skills. Maybe mc a few bard levels on a different class if that's the case. Maybe a sorc with a few bard levels?
    Generally I think multi classing weakens spell casters. Magic Initiate is there to make it less necessary.

    Sorcerers get some neat tools themselves and there is synergy there though.

  20. - Top - End - #50
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    QuickLyRaiNbow's Avatar

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    I just wanted a bard for the good out-of-combat skills. Maybe mc a few bard levels on a different class if that's the case. Maybe a sorc with a few bard levels?
    Lore Bard 6 should have fireball, at least. That and counterspell are usually my magical secret picks.

    I really do think you should take a second look at suggestion, enemies abound, fear and some of the other big battlefield control spells.

  21. - Top - End - #51
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    No dinos allowed in most of our campaigns, sad to say. We've only had a single one that had zombified t-rex mutants.
    It doesn't really change anything. Polymorph is a great spell to use on your teammates.

  22. - Top - End - #52
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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    I've played a lore bard X/ hexblade warlock 2 to level 13 so far and I've found it to be very effective.

    The only negative is that the spells run one level behind. However, after reaching level 7 and getting 3rd level spells, I didn't find this to be an issue since the spell DCs stay the same and 3rd level spells give sufficient choice that I didn't miss getting the next level of spells until 2 levels later.

    The benefits from 2 levels of hexblade include:
    - medium armor, shields and martial weapon proficiencies
    - hexblade's curse 1/SR
    - shield and hex spells plus 2 additional cantrips (one of which is eldritch blast)
    - 2 invocations - agonizing blast + one more (Devil's sight is great if you start variant human, repelling blast is great for cantrip crowd control)
    - 2 first level spell slots that refresh on a short rest (more slots for shield or other first level spells)

    I found that the at will damage from agonizing blast (backed up with hex on occasion) was usually about as good as an average melee or ranged character who doesn't have a bonus action attack option. This gives the character competitive to above average at will damage IN ADDITION to all of the usual bard spell options.

    I'll also add that there were times when this was actually essential. There was one combat against a demi-lich and skeletal dragon that were magic resistant with legendary saves where spells weren't doing much but agonizing blast from a couple of characters including the bard/warlock was contributing most of the damage.

    On the other hand, the bard has completely dominated some combats with a strategic and lucky use of hypnotic pattern where all of the opponents failed the save turning a difficult fight into a trivial encounter. The bard then contributed to taking down the targets using agonizing blast while maintaining concentration on the hypnotic pattern.

    When you add spells like suggestion, blindness (no concentration), fireball (magic secret), counterspell (magic secret) and more, the bard can provide all sorts of support.

    Anyway, if you want to play a bard that can do some damage as well as meaningfully contribute with skills and spells, then a lore bard with 2 levels of hexblade warlock can do this extremely well in my experience.

    Finally, the value of a lore bard's cutting words (when they remember to use it :) ), shouldn't be underestimated. The lore bard can change a hit into a miss with a decent roll (though they can't prevent crits).

    P.S. Lore bard also has healing word which makes them an excellent backup healer to get a downed team mate back into the fight ... which they can then follow up with an eldritch blast if they happen to also be a warlock :)

  23. - Top - End - #53
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    Thumbs down Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Well, I'd originally looked over the lore bard and if I were to start one at lv. 8, my spell list would go:

    Mage Hand or Prestidigitation
    Minor Illusion
    Vicious Mockery

    Comprehend Languages
    Cure Wounds
    Detect Magic
    Dissonant Whispers (for a damaging option)
    Faerie Fire
    Healing Word

    Heat Metal
    Lesser Restoration
    Phantasmal Force
    Shatter

    Lore Spells (from Sorcerer list)

    Fireball
    Shield
    Last edited by samcifer; 2019-05-21 at 09:30 PM.
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by Keravath View Post
    I've played a lore bard X/ hexblade warlock 2 to level 13 so far and I've found it to be very effective.

    The only negative is that the spells run one level behind. However, after reaching level 7 and getting 3rd level spells, I didn't find this to be an issue since the spell DCs stay the same and 3rd level spells give sufficient choice that I didn't miss getting the next level of spells until 2 levels later.

    The benefits from 2 levels of hexblade include:
    - medium armor, shields and martial weapon proficiencies
    - hexblade's curse 1/SR
    - shield and hex spells plus 2 additional cantrips (one of which is eldritch blast)
    - 2 invocations - agonizing blast + one more (Devil's sight is great if you start variant human, repelling blast is great for cantrip crowd control)
    - 2 first level spell slots that refresh on a short rest (more slots for shield or other first level spells)

    I found that the at will damage from agonizing blast (backed up with hex on occasion) was usually about as good as an average melee or ranged character who doesn't have a bonus action attack option. This gives the character competitive to above average at will damage IN ADDITION to all of the usual bard spell options.

    I'll also add that there were times when this was actually essential. There was one combat against a demi-lich and skeletal dragon that were magic resistant with legendary saves where spells weren't doing much but agonizing blast from a couple of characters including the bard/warlock was contributing most of the damage.

    On the other hand, the bard has completely dominated some combats with a strategic and lucky use of hypnotic pattern where all of the opponents failed the save turning a difficult fight into a trivial encounter. The bard then contributed to taking down the targets using agonizing blast while maintaining concentration on the hypnotic pattern.

    When you add spells like suggestion, blindness (no concentration), fireball (magic secret), counterspell (magic secret) and more, the bard can provide all sorts of support.

    Anyway, if you want to play a bard that can do some damage as well as meaningfully contribute with skills and spells, then a lore bard with 2 levels of hexblade warlock can do this extremely well in my experience.

    Finally, the value of a lore bard's cutting words (when they remember to use it :) ), shouldn't be underestimated. The lore bard can change a hit into a miss with a decent roll (though they can't prevent crits).

    P.S. Lore bard also has healing word which makes them an excellent backup healer to get a downed team mate back into the fight ... which they can then follow up with an eldritch blast if they happen to also be a warlock :)
    Yeah, Hexblade 2/lore bard 6+ with Fireball sounds much more appealing to me. Agonizing Repelling EB with Hex sounds pretty good and having Shield as well as having half-plate + a shield and charisma for melee attacking if foes get too close seems to be more in keeping with my ability to play a caster.
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

  25. - Top - End - #55
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    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    If you want to put Hex up that will keep basically all of your control by the wayside. With the style you've just posed everything you want is a Sorlock.

    Bards, built like bards, always have something better to concentrate on than hex. Always.

    Now bards are incredible. I love them a lot.
    But when you're talking about a Bard/Warlock that uses Fireball and Hex to maximize DPS with a Medium Armor and shield, what I hear is that you'd be happier with a Hexblade/Sorcerer.
    Last edited by Xihirli; 2019-05-21 at 09:53 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iceseer View Post
    I really wanted what Xihirli said to be true though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ramsus View Post
    That was a lot of awesome backstabbing.
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    I love you, you kooky loon.

  26. - Top - End - #56
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2016

    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by samcifer View Post
    Well, I'd originally looked over the lore bard and if I were to start one at lv. 8, my spell list would go:

    Mage Hand or Prestidigitation
    Minor Illusion
    Vicious Mockery

    Comprehend Languages
    Cure Wounds
    Detect Magic
    Dissonant Whispers (for a damaging option)
    Faerie Fire
    Healing Word

    Heat Metal
    Lesser Restoration
    Phantasmal Force
    Shatter

    Lore Spells (from Sorcerer list)

    Fireball
    Shield
    Not a bad list. Its entirely functional.

    I don't like Cure Wounds for a Bard. Let a Cleric worry about REALLY healing ppl. The ranged bonus action Healing Word is a Bard heal.

    My Lore bards generally DON'T want to be in melee so I have Thunderwave. Its an AOE which can get you out of melee sometimes.

    I'e pimped Counterspell a couple times. Shield is nifty though.

    Fireball is really neat. By he time you get it you may not need Shatter unless you are targeting a different save.

    Any tricky Ranger or Paladin spells that interest you besides Fireball? Bards can cast Ranger and Paladin spells better than Rangers and Paladins.

    Fear is fun also, especially if you are playing a small non intimidating looking Bard.

  27. - Top - End - #57
    Troll in the Playground
     
    EvilClericGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Somewhere
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by MaxWilson View Post
    I have never seen a bard do this and it's hard to imagine that one ever could. Vicious Mockery has pathetic damage and targets a strong save. Even ignoring legendary resistance, a 20th level bard with Cha 20 would have to cast Vicious Mockery 25 times in a row to deal the 178 HP of damage needed to kill even a Young Red Dragon, and it would take 48 castings to kill an Adult Red Dragon. Long before that happens, the dragon will have killed and eaten the bard.

    You could kill an orc by insulting it though. :-P

    P.S. The disadvantage from Vicious Mockery is decent at low levels and nigh-irrelevant at higher levels, because it only works on one attack. If you Vicious Mockery a CR 5 troll at 5th level, even if he fails the save you're only imposing disadvantage on the d6+4 (7) bite attack, but the 2d6+8 (15) of claw attacks are unhindered.
    Of course it doesn't work if you just mock the dragon. The correct way to do it is to add insult to injury, propably caused by some other party member.

  28. - Top - End - #58
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Devil

    Join Date
    Nov 2015

    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkVIIIMarc View Post
    Not a bad list. Its entirely functional.

    I don't like Cure Wounds for a Bard. Let a Cleric worry about REALLY healing ppl. The ranged bonus action Healing Word is a Bard heal.

    My Lore bards generally DON'T want to be in melee so I have Thunderwave. Its an AOE which can get you out of melee sometimes.

    I'e pimped Counterspell a couple times. Shield is nifty though.

    Fireball is really neat. By he time you get it you may not need Shatter unless you are targeting a different save.

    Any tricky Ranger or Paladin spells that interest you besides Fireball? Bards can cast Ranger and Paladin spells better than Rangers and Paladins.

    Fear is fun also, especially if you are playing a small non intimidating looking Bard.
    I suppose Spike Growth would be an interesting spell to take.
    "I'll have my revenge, and Deathstalker (part) II! ô"

  29. - Top - End - #59
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Zombie

    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Bard is a force multiplier for the party that is never really at a loss for something useful to do. That said, they're not really the center stage action hero. If making the other heroes more epic isn't your bag there's no shame in not wanting to play one.
    I am the flush of excitement. The blush on the cheek. I am the Rouge!

  30. - Top - End - #60
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    QuickLyRaiNbow's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Please sell me on why I'd want to ever play a bard, when they seem so weak...

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkVIIIMarc View Post
    Not a bad list. Its entirely functional.

    I don't like Cure Wounds for a Bard. Let a Cleric worry about REALLY healing ppl. The ranged bonus action Healing Word is a Bard heal.

    My Lore bards generally DON'T want to be in melee so I have Thunderwave. Its an AOE which can get you out of melee sometimes.

    I'e pimped Counterspell a couple times. Shield is nifty though.

    Fireball is really neat. By he time you get it you may not need Shatter unless you are targeting a different save.

    Any tricky Ranger or Paladin spells that interest you besides Fireball? Bards can cast Ranger and Paladin spells better than Rangers and Paladins.

    Fear is fun also, especially if you are playing a small non intimidating looking Bard.
    I think the best paladin and ranger spells come in with the level 10 magical secrets.

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