So I’ve been told quite a few time that a Bard character is likely the ideal character for me. In general I play the party face and leader as no one in our group has the desire to do so. In addition I like to be skilled at a few things as well as be knowledgeable and fill in roles on the battlefield. I personally prefer spell casting as simply “I hit them” doesn’t interest me a great deal.
Current characters in 5e have been
a Half Drow Tome Celestial Warlock 1-5. Hated the subclass and but enjoyed fiend for a bit. OoTA
A Human Cavalier fighter then switched to eldritch knight as “there was no place for a cavalier in the campaign” lv 1-2 found it slow either way. HoTDQ
A Orc Monk lv 1-2 he died to Bollywogs and was forced to have suboptimal stats by dm. Didn’t enjoy at all. Custom campaign Nentir Vale
Eladrin Draconic sorcerer lv 3-5 and so far I’ve been enjoying playing him even if such limited spell selection is constricting. Custom Nentir Vale
Finally a Drow transmutation Wizard lv 1-3 in another campaign I play at a local game store. So far really enjoying wizard. Not sure if it’s because wizard, or different dm or both. Custom
Personally bard has never interested me and is the last class I’d pick. Yet I want an honest opinion on why I perhaps should be a bard and what makes it such s great choice for players. I’d really like to hear the pros and cons as well as some great stories/moments of your characters.
You could always try a Bard to see how much you might like it.
They do get a lot of skills, can fill many roles both in combat and out, and can cast spells... all things you like to do.
A fun thing to try if you play a Bard and select College of Lore at 3rd level is; cast Bane on the enemy/or enemies on the 1st turn and then on other turns cast Vicious Mockery, this gives one of them disadvantage on his next attack role, so when he selects the lower of the 2 rolls he then applies a d4 penalty making it even harder to hit you and your allies, you can also use Cutting Words to apply another d6 penalty, making it almost impossible to hit.
I once played one and when we landed on a small island and tried to infiltrate an enemy pirate camp, I cast Hypnotic Pattern on a group of 6 and caught 5 of them, the party rushed the last one and then we dealt with the rest with ease before a few more showed up. It would of been a very hard or deadly fight but ended up being easy.
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Toren "Tickle-Whiskers," human abjurer 13, Coliseum of Conquest Joben, halfling bard 1, Village of Nowhere Maghdim, human enchanter 3, Daphitra's Domain
I haven't had an opportunity to try playing bard yet (I like sorcerers, warlocks, and wizards too much).
Bards are very versatile. They get a number of skill proficiencies and expertise. Lore bards especially get extra proficiencies and more spells than other bards.
Default bards are pretty much support/gish classes, but because of their ability to learn spells from other classes, they can fill whatever roll they want. The lore bard learns extra spells at lower levels, allowing them to branch out at lower levels.
The college of blades leans into the gish role and is basically a far more magical (and slightly less martial) eldritch knight. While still being a decent skill monkey.
I'm not as interested in other subclasses. Glamour is more about healing and enchantment. Valor is a worse blade bard but tries to make up for it by also being a battle master/eldritch knight hybrid. Whispers is the edgy one with a sneak attack/smite knockoff.
To be an ultimate skill monkey, start 1 level rogue (eventually go Level 3 for scout), then go 3 levels valor bard. By level 6, you should have at least 10 skill proficiencies and 6 expertise.
In general I play the party face and leader as no one in our group has the desire to do so. In addition I like to be skilled at a few things as well as be knowledgeable and fill in roles on the battlefield. I personally prefer spell casting as simply “I hit them” doesn’t interest me a great deal.
All the things you like are things Bards are excellent at, so it makes sense your friends are suggesting Bard to you! Their Charisma is useful in social situations, they gain proficiency in LOADS of skills (there's literally a feature called "jack of all trades"), their spell list includes a huge variety of options, and you can flavor them in a multitude of ways with all the different subclasses.
My college of lore bard was a master stroyteller. She would set up in the corner of the tavern and in moments have half the room enthralled with a tall tale or an exciting retelling of an ancient myth. She knew a little bit about everything, and could pull up that knowledge when chatting with magistrates or distracting dragons. She could counterspell the wizard, inspire her friends, and fireball the enemy all in one round. She was ancient and wise, beloved and feared, and in a way everyone's grandma. What she was NOT was strong, or fast. For all the might of her mind she was weak and slow of body. She was amazing to play and one day I'll get to play her again.
Try building a character with a story in mind first, not a race or class. Who are they and what do they seek in life. Does your character seek knowledge for knowledge sake or does the character seek to share it? Why do they adventure and who taught them their skill? If once you have been answered a Bard makes sense then be a Bard. If you start focused on game mechanics and one or two spells/abilities, you may find that those do not come up often.