All About The Bard Class

The bard is a bit of a quandary class.  They can play any role a bit but they are not typically masters of any.  They can heal, they can fight in melee or ranged and they can do spells.  They can be good diplomats, good speakers and give some good bonuses to fellow party members.

In truth they have been greatly enhanced in 5th edition and made into a very enjoyable class to play.  We think if you are in a small party they seem more powerful than if it’s a big group as in a big group there ‘could’ be feeling that you can’t do anything special as you have devoted warriors, rogues and wizards around you.  They make good solo characters also and in 5th edition they are an excellent choice for fun and function.

The Bard (as he or she should) will find a use in just about any situation.

Class Mechanics

Hit Points – you get 1D8 per level, which is pretty respectable.  This goes even further if you keep out of melee range!

Armour – Light armour is all you get.  This said a half decent Dex helps here and if you are not making yourself a target then you are on to a winner.  You can take the Valour Bard option later which gives you medium armour and shield use which lets you stand up in combat much more.  If not keep with the light armour and play it safe.

Weapons – Simple weapons, some martial swords as well which is nice.  Ranged weapons though could be your key here though, adding to it a decent Dex and you are away.

Class Features

Here we don’t want to list stuff just from the Players Handbook but in short you can do a lot pretty well.  You can get into a bit of melee combat, you are a good shot and you have some good and damaging spells as well.  The bard is not a character class to be ignored anymore.  It is a fully working character which can give out some really big boosts to others around them, as well as being pretty useful themselves.

They are not to be taken lightly!

Bard Colleges

At later levels you pick one of the bardic colleges.  This is your chance for further study and it gives a more rounded flavour to your character.  The Lore College (The skill bard).  Here you know a lot, you become great at skills and you get some nice abilities.  A bit of a rogue style feel to them here and the ability to give debuffs to your opponents is very good with Cutting Words.

The College of Valor (Melee Bards – yep!).  This is ideal for someone who has been traveling around with a group of warriors, or something similar.  You have invested your research and joined with others who know the tricks of combat.  You get some solid boosts to damage and armour class.  You also get more attacks and more more damaging magic.  It’s a nice little school this.


When you look in the Players Handbook you will find out there is a lot of feats to choose from.  The bard can benefit from many of these, a good one is Lucky as this means you should be really good at your skill checks.  You could also take Inspiriting Leader Feat also.  These are both really solid at all levels.