Bards are artists first and foremost, and they practicemagic just as they practice song, drama, or poetry.They have a clear sense of how people perceive reality, so they master charm magic and some illusions.

Sagas of great heroes are part of a bard’s repertoire, and most bards follow the example of many fables and become skilled in a variety of fields. A bard’s artistic ability, knowledge of lore, and arcane might are widely respected, particularly among the world’s rulers.

Art and magic share a sublime beauty, and, as a bard, you seek the place where the two meet. You might be a naturally talented wanderer who casts impressive spells almost instinctively, a student of a bardic college who learned ordered systems of magic and epic poetry, a warrior skald who mixes skill at arms with thundering music, a dashing performer known for putting on a good show even for your enemies, or a perfectionist who seeks the consummate formula that blends art and magic into a higher force.

A steady rhythm beats in the back of your mind as you brandish your sword. Your eyes and ears pick up the motion of the villains that surround you, and one glance tells you everything you need to know to defeat them. You whistle three staccato notes, letting your allies know the symphony of battle is about to begin.


Characteristics:  Your powers are a mix of ranged,melee, and close attacks, giving you plenty of options whether you choose to lead from the front or the rear. Your attacks can provide bonuses and extra movement to you and your allies, or they can charm and deceive your enemies.
Religion: Many bards revere Corellon, patron of both artists and wielders of arcane magic. Cunning bards also honor Avandra and Sehanine, who are credited with inspiring trickery in the heroes of old. Valorous bards are more likely to revere Bahamut, Kord, or Moradin. Evil bards often worship Lolth, Tiamat, or Zehir.
Races: Half-Elves are sometimes said to be the best bards, partly because their ability score bonuses favor the valorous bard and partly because their Dilettante racial trait complements the bard’s Multiclass Versatility. Tieflings make excellent cunning bards.


You can build your bard however you choose, but there are 3 archetypal bard combat styles:

  • Valor Bards –  Attack in melee and use their songs and music to inspire their allies to keep fighting against the odds.
  • Cunning Bards – Attack in melee and use their songs and music to trick their enemies, allowing their allies to move into better positions.
  • Prescient Bards – Attack from afar and use their powers to manipulate luck and glimpse into the future.