Bard - DnD Wiki | Dungeons and Dragons (D&D 5E) (2022)

Level Proficiency Bonus Features Cantrips Known Spells Known 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st +2 Bardic Inspiration, Magical Inspiration, Spellcasting, Spell Versatility 2 4 2 - - - - - - - -
2nd +2 Jack of All Trades, Song of Rest (d6) 2 5 3 - - - - - - - -
3rd +2 Bard College, Expertise 2 6 4 2 - - - - - - -
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement, Proficiency Versatility 3 7 4 3 - - - - - - -
5th +3 Bardic Inspiration (d8), Font of Inspiration 3 8 4 3 2 - - - - - -
6th +3 Countercharm, Bard College feature 3 9 4 3 3 - - - - - -
7th +3 - 3 10 4 3 3 1 - - - - -
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement, Proficiency Versatility 3 11 4 3 3 2 - - - - -
9th +4 Song of Rest (d8) 3 12 4 3 3 3 1 - - - -
10th +4 Bardic Inspiration (d10), Expertise, Magical Secrets 4 13 4 3 3 3 2 - - - -
11th +4 - 4 14 4 3 3 3 2 1 - - -
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement, Proficiency Versatility 4 15 4 3 3 3 2 1 - - -
13th +5 Song of Rest (d10) 4 16 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 - -
14th +5 Magical Secrets, Bard College feature 4 17 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 - -
15th +5 Bardic Inspiration (d12) 4 18 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 -
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement, Proficiency Versatility 4 19 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 -
17th +6 Song of Rest (d12) 4 20 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 1
18th +6 Magical Secrets 4 22 4 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement, Proficiency Versatility 4 22 4 3 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
20th +6 Superior Inspiration 4 22 4 3 3 3 3 2 2 1 1

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d8

Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + your Constitution modifier

Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + your Constitution modifier per Bard level after 1st

Proficiencies

Armor: light armor

Weapons: simple weapons, hand crossbows, longswords, rapiers, shortswords

Tools: three musical instruments of your choice

Saving Throws: Dexterity, Charisma

Skills: Choose any 3.

Starting Equipment

You start with the following items, plus anything provided by your background.

  • (a) a rapier, (b) a longsword, or (c) any simple weapon
  • (a) a diplomat's pack or (b) an entertainer's pack
  • (a) a lute or (b) any other musical instrument
  • Leather armor, and a dagger

Alternatively, you may start with 5d4 × 10 gp to buy your own equipment.

Multiclassing

Ability Score Minimum: Charisma 13

When you gain a level in a class other than your first, you gain only some of that class's starting proficiencies.

(Video) Bard Class Guide for Dungeons and Dragons 5e

Armor: light armor

Tools: one musical instrument of your choice

Skills: Choose any skill.

Bardic Inspiration

You can inspire others through stirring words or music. To do so, you use a bonus action on your turn to choose one creature other than yourself within 60 feet of you who can hear you. That creature gains one Bardic Inspiration die, a d6.

Once within the next 10 minutes, the creature can roll the die and add the number rolled to one ability check, attack roll, or saving throw it makes. The creature can wait until after it rolls the d20 before deciding to use the Bardic Inspiration die, but must decide before the DM says whether the roll succeeds or fails. Once the Bardic Inspiration die is rolled, it is lost. A creature can have only one Bardic Inspiration die at a time.

You can use this feature a number of times equal to your Charisma modifier (a minimum of once). You regain any expended uses when you finish a long rest.

Your Bardic Inspiration die changes when you reach certain levels in this class. The die becomes a d8 at 5th level, a d10 at 10th level, and a d12 at 15th level.

Magical Inspiration(UA)

1st-level bard feature (enhances Bardic Inspiration)

If a creature has a Bardic Inspiration die from you and casts a spell, the creature can roll that die and add the number rolled to one damage or healing roll of the spell. The Bardic Inspiration die is then lost.

Spellcasting

You have learned to untangle and reshape the fabric of reality in harmony with your wishes and music. Your spells are part of your vast repertoire, magic that you can tune to different situations. See chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting and chapter 11 for the bard spell list.

Cantrips

You know two cantrips of your choice from the bard spell list. You learn additional bard cantrips of your choice at higher levels, learning a 3rd cantrip at 4th level and a 4th at 10th level.

Spell Slots

The Bard table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your bard spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell's level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.

For example, if you know the 1st-level spell cure wounds and have a 1st-level and a 2nd-level spell slot available, you can cast cure wounds using either slot.

Spells Known of 1st Level and Higher

You know four 1st-level spells of your choice from the bard spell list.

You learn an additional bard spell of your choice at each level except 12th, 16th, 19th, and 20th. Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots. For instance, when you reach 3rd level in this class, you can learn one new spell of 1st or 2nd level.

Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the bard spells you know and replace it with another spell from the bard spell list, which also must be of a level for which you have spell slots.

Spellcasting Ability

Charisma is your spellcasting ability for your bard spells. Your magic comes from the heart and soul you pour into the performance of your music or oration. You use your Charisma whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Charisma modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a bard spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

(Video) A Crap Guide to D&D [5th Edition] - Bard

Ritual Casting

You can cast any bard spell you know as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag.

Spellcasting Focus

You can use a musical instrument as a spellcasting focus for your bard spells.

Spell Versatility(UA)

1st-level bard feature (enhances Spellcasting)

Whenever you finish a long rest, you can replace one spell you learned from this Spellcasting feature with another spell from the bard spell list. The new spell must be the same level as the spell you replace.

Jack of All Trades

Starting at 2nd level, you can add half your proficiency bonus, rounded down, to any ability check you make that doesn't already include your proficiency bonus.

Song of Rest (d6)

Beginning at 2nd level, you can use soothing music or oration to help revitalize your wounded allies during a short rest. If you or any friendly creatures who can hear your performance regain hit points by spending Hit Dice at the end of the short rest, each of those creatures regains an extra 1d6 hit points.

The extra hit points increase when you reach certain levels in this class: to 1d8 at 9th level, to 1d10 at 13th level, and to 1d12 at 17th level.

Bard College

At 3rd level, you delve into the advanced techniques of a bard college of your choice from the list of available colleges. Your choice grants you features at 3rd level and again at 6th and 14th level.

Expertise

At 3rd level, choose two of your skill proficiencies. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.

At 10th level, you can choose another two skill proficiencies to gain this benefit.

Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 4th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.

Proficiency Versatility (UA)

4th-level feature (enhances Ability Score Improvement)

Note that this feature is intended for use with the Ranger class presented in the Player's Handbook. It is presented here for convenience, and may be unsuitable for use as a Spell-less Ranger feature.

When you gain the Ability Score Improvement feature from your class, you can also replace one of your skill proficiencies with a skill proficiency offered by your class at 1st level (the proficiency you replace needn't be from the class).

This change represents one of your skills atrophying as you focus on a different skill.

Bardic Inspiration (d8)

At 5th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d8.

Font of Inspiration

Beginning when you reach 5th level, you regain all of your expended uses of Bardic Inspiration when you finish a short or long rest.

Countercharm

At 6th level, you gain the ability to use musical notes or words of power to disrupt mind-influencing effects. As an action, you can start a performance that lasts until the end of your next turn. During that time, you and any friendly creatures within 30 feet of you have advantage on saving throws against being frightened or charmed. A creature must be able to hear you to gain this benefit. The performance ends early if you are incapacitated or silenced or if you voluntarily end it (no action required).

(Video) College of Eloquence Bard - Ultimate Guide for Dungeons & Dragons

Bard College feature

At 6th level, you gain a feature from your Bard College.

Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 8th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.

Proficiency Versatility (UA)

8th-level feature (enhances Ability Score Improvement)

Note that this feature is intended for use with the Ranger class presented in the Player's Handbook. It is presented here for convenience, and may be unsuitable for use as a Spell-less Ranger feature.

When you gain the Ability Score Improvement feature from your class, you can also replace one of your skill proficiencies with a skill proficiency offered by your class at 1st level (the proficiency you replace needn't be from the class).

This change represents one of your skills atrophying as you focus on a different skill.

Song of Rest (d8)

At 9th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d8.

Bardic Inspiration (d10)

At 10th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d10.

Expertise

At 10th level, you can choose another two skill proficiencies. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.

Magical Secrets

By 10th level, you have plundered magical knowledge from a wide spectrum of disciplines. Choose two spells from any classes, including this one. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.

The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known column of the Bard table.

You learn two additional spells from any classes at 14th level and again at 18th level.

Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 12th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.

Proficiency Versatility (UA)

12th-level feature (enhances Ability Score Improvement)

Note that this feature is intended for use with the Ranger class presented in the Player's Handbook. It is presented here for convenience, and may be unsuitable for use as a Spell-less Ranger feature.

When you gain the Ability Score Improvement feature from your class, you can also replace one of your skill proficiencies with a skill proficiency offered by your class at 1st level (the proficiency you replace needn't be from the class).

This change represents one of your skills atrophying as you focus on a different skill.

(Video) How To Play A College Of Lore Bard in Dungeons and Dragons 5e

Song of Rest (d10)

At 13th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d10.

Magical Secrets

At 14th level, choose two additional spells from any classes, including this one. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.

The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known column of the Bard table.

Bard College feature

At 14th level, you gain a feature from your Bard College.

Bardic Inspiration (d12)

At 15th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d12.

Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 16th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.

Proficiency Versatility (UA)

16th-level feature (enhances Ability Score Improvement)

Note that this feature is intended for use with the Ranger class presented in the Player's Handbook. It is presented here for convenience, and may be unsuitable for use as a Spell-less Ranger feature.

When you gain the Ability Score Improvement feature from your class, you can also replace one of your skill proficiencies with a skill proficiency offered by your class at 1st level (the proficiency you replace needn't be from the class).

This change represents one of your skills atrophying as you focus on a different skill.

Song of Rest (d12)

At 17th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d12.

Magical Secrets

At 18th level, choose two additional spells from any class, including this one. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.

The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known column of the Bard table.

Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.

Proficiency Versatility (UA)

19th-level feature (enhances Ability Score Improvement)

Note that this feature is intended for use with the Ranger class presented in the Player's Handbook. It is presented here for convenience, and may be unsuitable for use as a Spell-less Ranger feature.

When you gain the Ability Score Improvement feature from your class, you can also replace one of your skill proficiencies with a skill proficiency offered by your class at 1st level (the proficiency you replace needn't be from the class).

(Video) Bard Subclass Tier Ranking in Dungeons & Dragons 5e

This change represents one of your skills atrophying as you focus on a different skill.

Superior Inspiration

At 20th level, when you roll initiative and have no uses of Bardic Inspiration left, you regain one use.

FAQs

What is a bard in Dungeons and Dragons? ›

The bard is a master of song, speech, and the magic they contain." A bard's spellcasting abilities are determined by their charisma score, which means they can generally take on the role of the party face quite easily.

What race makes the best bard? ›

The following races are optimal choices for a bard character:
  • Changeling. Changelings get +2 Cha and +1 to any stat, which you can put into Dex. ...
  • Elf (Drow) Elves get +2 Dex and selecting the Drow subrace snags us a +1 Cha bonus. ...
  • Elf (Eladrin) ...
  • Half-Elf. ...
  • Halfling (Lightfoot) ...
  • Human (Base or Variant) ...
  • Satyr. ...
  • Tabaxi.
Feb 7, 2019

What class goes well with a bard? ›

Bards and Rogues are a classic combo. This is the multiclass path to having expertise in as many skills as you could possibly want. You get expertise from being a bard, get it again from being a rogue, and cunning action gets you even more mobility so that you can always have something to do in the middle of a combat.

What is the most powerful bard subclass? ›

8 College Of Eloquence

Crowd control abilities are this Bard's greatest ability, so depending on your specific module, its uses might be too situational for new players or those that want more action during fight sequences.

Why is a bard so powerful? ›

Bards play an important role in most D&D parties. Thanks to their high Charisma, they have the ability to gather information, persuade a person into compliance, or put on a particularly believable performance.

Why are bards so good? ›

Playful, suave, and often seductive, Bards are a wildly enjoyable class to play in D&D. Not only can they charm their way out of any situation, they can also sling some tasty DnD spells across the battlefield, and support their allies by giving them helpful buffs (sometimes even healing, too).

What race goes with a bard? ›

There are a handful of standard races perfect for Bards, but the best hands down remains the Half-Elf. Not only do half-elves get an automatic +2 Charisma boost, they also get two more +1 stat boosts to other attributes. This is great for granting extra Intelligence and Dexterity, both highly useful skills for Bards.

What abilities are best for bards? ›

Typically, bards tend to be best with Charisma-based skills, and then have either Wisdom, Dexterity or Intelligence-based skills as a second speciality.

What should a bard multiclass into? ›

It's useful to multiclass a Bard into a Druid if you want to provide your party with that type of utility. It might also be useful if you want your Bard to experience the thrill of close combat and have chosen a subclass like the College of Swords.

How do you get the best bard in 5e? ›

Charisma: It's already been said that a Bard needs to ooze charm to be effective, so it shouldn't be surprising that a bard's highest stat should most definitely be Charisma. If the Bard starts the game with their Charisma score below a 20, then the player should focus on getting them there through gaining levels.

What do you need to multiclass into bard? ›

Class Ability Score Minimums:
  1. Artificer – Intelligence 13.
  2. Barbarian – Strength 13.
  3. Bard – Charisma 13.
  4. Cleric – Wisdom 13.
  5. Druid – Wisdom 13.
  6. Fighter – Strength 13 or Dexterity 13.
  7. Monk – Dexterity 13 and Wisdom 13.
  8. Paladin – Strength 13 and Charisma 13.
May 13, 2022

Do Tiefling make good Bards? ›

All Tiefling bloodlines grant a +2 bonus to Charisma, so that's a great pickup for any Bards since they'll be using Charisma and need a lot of it.

Can a lore bard use a shield? ›

For a regular shield, Bards don't start with proficiency but some College can grant it at L3. RAW, you've basically got it right... even if you're not proficient with Shields, equipping one gives you a +2 to your AC, but without proficiency there are so many downsides it's not worth doing.

What bard College is good for healing? ›

Bard: College of Lore

Bard is D&D's third major healing class. Bards can use Healing Word and Mass Cure Wounds and, similarly to druid, they can also use Polymorph.

Do bards get counterspell? ›

Lore bards get counterspell earlier than other bards with their additional magical secrets at 6th level, and they add half their proficiency bonus from jack of all trades.

What Armour do bards wear? ›

Bards tend to wear light armor such as leather and carry one-handed weapons such as the longsword or rapier.

What magic do bards use? ›

How does Bard Magic Work in Dungeons & Dragons - YouTube

How do Bards fight? ›

Also there are definitely other ways to contribute to combat other than damage. Bards are pretty good at making enemies whiff their attacks. Apply both Bane and Vicious Mockery to an opponent and watch as they bumble and fumble their attacks. Great for making a fool of your enemies.

Why do Bards exist? ›

In Celtic cultures, a bard is a professional story teller, verse-maker, music composer, oral historian and genealogist, employed by a patron (such as a monarch or chieftain) to commemorate one or more of the patron's ancestors and to praise the patron's own activities.

What is the most powerful weapon in D&D? ›

15 Strongest Legendary Weapons in Dungeons & Dragons
  1. 1 Luck Blade. Dungeon Master's Guide pg.
  2. 2 Moonblade. Dungeon Master's Guide pg. ...
  3. 3 Vorpal Sword. Dungeon Master's Guide pg. ...
  4. 4 Wave Functions As A Whole Loadout. ...
  5. 5 The Rakdos Riteknife. ...
  6. 6 Hazirawn. ...
  7. 7 Holy Avenger. ...
  8. 8 Whelm. ...
Aug 7, 2022

Can Bards be good fighters? ›

Well a bard will not be a fighter, even buffed they can't quite make that much of a shift. But they can be good melee combatants. Both Dex and Str builds are possible. Str builds aren't quite as powerful but are easier rules wise.

Can an elf be a bard? ›

Humans, elves, dwarves, and hobbits can be bards, though only humans can progress past 8th level.

How does bard spellcasting work? ›

Members of a few classes, including bards and sorcerers, have a limited list of spells they know that are always fixed in mind. Instead of preparing spells, Bards simply have spells known, and they can expend spell slots to cast one of their known spells.

What weapons do bards use? ›

Armor and Weapon Proficiency: A bard is proficient with all simple weapons, pistols, the longsword, rapier, sap, short sword, shortbow, and whip.

What is a bard 5e? ›

Bard. Whether scholar, skald, or scoundrel, a bard weaves magic through words and music to inspire allies, demoralize foes, manipulate minds, create illusions, and even heal wounds. The bard is a master of song, speech, and the magic they contain.

Videos

1. D&D (5e): Mini Combat Tutorial (Bard Level 1)
(How to D&D)
2. DnD Bard 5e Guide - Classes for Dungeons and Dragons
(SkullSplitter Dice)
3. The Support Lore Bard - D&D: Optimized #15
(d4: D&D Deep Dive)
4. Bard Class Guide - Dungeons and Dragons 5e
(Taking20)
5. Bardbarian 5e - Ultimate Guide for Dungeons and Dragons
(SkullSplitter Dice)
6. BUILD A BETTER BARD | 10 Unique Ideas For Your Next Dungeons and Dragons Bard Character
(The Cleric Corner)

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