Hello all! I'm new to DnD in general so still learning the basics and what not, but since this is a bard related question, I figured I'd post it here!
I know for a fact I want to be a bard based on all the hilarious stories I've heard about them and how a bard can really make the game into something completely different if played right.
I'm struggling choosing a race for my bard. I've looked through a couple different ones, but not sure which one would be the best for a first time player such as myself. I was thinking Dragonborn would be neat, or maybe some sort of variant of it that's chaotic neutral. The basic outline I have so far is that my bard is essentially a conman that has a few different schemes going on at once and the only way he's (or she, haven't decided gender yet) useful in battle is when he's drunk.
I'm open to all suggestions on how to better craft my bard and how to choose a race for him/her.
If your Bard is a conman concept, then you are blending into the territory of a Rogue. Therefore you would want to have knowledge of things to pull off your deceptions. Consider College of Lore for this. You will also rely on dexterity to pull off many schemes so consider that in selecting a race. A Halfling fits in with that approach as he gets bonuses for hiding but has a generally disarming appearance so may have good results for establishing trust upon first meeting. All in all, I would encourage you to consider going Rogue is conman is your idea. However, if you are teamed up with a Rogue and you are playing a Bard, that could be pretty effective. Remember to pick you proficiencies to support your approach. GL & welcome to this wonderful game and social experience.
Hmm alright, I'll need to ask my other party members what they plan on doing for their characters to see if anyone is being a Rogue, otherwise I'll avoid the whole conman aspect of it for now as I'm still fleshing out my character. I'd rather play true the the Bard name than go so far off script that people confuse me for another class. Thanks for the advice! Is there a usual common race for Bard by any chance?
Bards come in all shapes and sizes. I prefer Humans, Half-elves, Halflings and Dwarves.
As for taking your Bard in another direction, consider this: a Bard is good at almost everything but just not a Master of everything. You can play a bard with a little side thing going as a conman, but that would develop as your character matures and gains levels. So, the College or Lore would still provide access to knowledge to help you pull off a scam. Proficiency in thieves tools and disguises will also help your curious hobbies.
Talk to your buddies. You might even get a spell caster to help with some illusions to enhance your chances.
Alright, thank you again! This has helped a lot. I'll talk to my friends and see what they plan on doing for their characters as a few of us are newbies to the craft. Our DM is a veteran player and he's the one who pointed me in the direction of this site.
I think half elves make good bards. +2 CHA and +1 to 2 of anything and 2 skill proficiencies. Make them very versatile.
The lore bard is my favorite bard subclass (I dont play bards though) with even more skills and early magical secrets to boost their versatility. Sword bard is good for a more martial build, and whisper bard is good for a sneakier build (they even have their own form of smite/sneak attack).
Rogue is a good multiclass if you want to be a skill monkey (actually starting with rogue and switch to bard is slightly better for this). You could also multiclass 3 levels sorcerer or warlock to get more magic abilities. Or dip 2-5 levels fighter or paladin to be more martial. Of course, multiclass characters have slower progression for their powerful abilities.
There's nothing wrong with your character concept. Almost any class (excepting Maybe the Paladin) can support some characters who are con artists. Like Illusionists, Bards get illusion and enchantment magic. What better way to make friends enemies and influence people than to use spells to swindle them out of their possessions or charm your way into their closet of secrets?
As for races, any with a decent Charisma will do. Some less conventional ones include Tabaxi (climb speed and rapid movement plus bonus skills), Changeling (change your appearance whenever you want), Drow (an Elf with the darkness spell and a lot of theme?), Fallen Aasimar (this one almost writes itself), and Yuan-ti (this is by DM permission only b/c they're a bit over-powered at low tiers of play).