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Call for input - bardic magic


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Background: I have seen many people express wishes that bards might have more specialized magical abilities than just scribing wizard scrolls. Sorcerer-style casting! Particular sound/music-based effects! Etc.


Well, I'm going to do it. Or, something like it. I'm planning a complete redesign of the bard class, with access to more thieving abilities than just PP, and with specialized bardic spells tailored to each kit and taking the place of *both* their wizard spellbook and their "stand around and sing" bard song.


But, I would like suggestions for what would make good bard spells, and what kinds of spells would be effective replacements for bard songs.


There are some obvious basic ideas - inspire courage/remove fear; combat buffs; Confusion for jesters; etc. I'm also thinking about a kind of 'Miscast Magic field,' something like Shout and/or Knock...


But, give me more ideas! I want to have something like ~20 bard-only spells. Some can be similar to existing spells, some can be totally new, whatever. I need to have enough to make up for the loss of flexibility of being able to cast *any* low-level wizard spell.

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all the emotion ones, a weak repulse/hold undead, something like curse (reverse bless), something for pulling enemies like an attractor (think morte's yapping), something for charming summons, something teleport fieldish, something Orpheus-like to attract all animals&plants in the area and a timed aeo inducing wild magic.


review the rr bard stuff for more ideas.


for extra kicks, you could pick spells at each level to be the goto one for spontaneus casting ala iwd2. It could be a simple enhancement for people using gemrb.

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Are you adding these as innates to your thief kit, or are these a part of the bard class overall?


You could do something like Ki points, but in like 3 or 4 specialties.


Illusion: A bard can cast X amount of these illusion spells 1 time per day per 4 levels. And then select one spell from a group of 4.

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Innates for thief kits. And yeah, something like ability pools, which will differ by kit and grow with levels.


Maybe make 5-10 standardized pools, and give each kit access to 1-5 of them (depending on the kit's theme and other advantages). Like cleric spell spheres 'lite.'


Between the 6 thief abilities, plus traps, plus low/med/high backstab, plus poison, plus 5-10 bardic ability pools, and then add kit-specific stuff like specal traps, Shadowstep, called shots, weapon display/finesse, etc... I would make 10 or 12 'Rogue' kits, ranging from pure thief to pure bard with a bunch of variations in between. Each kit might have 7-9 of the above abilities.


The main impediment right now, is figuring out what should populate those ability pools. Some could be music/based (a pool of inspirational music with buffs, a pool of dirges with enemy debuffs, etc.). Others could be dance-based (variations on Jester song) or magic-based (like Refinements' Stalkers' "Shadow Pool"). Etc.


So for instance, Blades would look very different. They might have Hide in Shadows, Move Silently, Poison Weapon, Weapon Display, medium backstab, and Shadow Pool.

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The main impediment right now, is figuring out what should populate those ability pools. Some could be music/based (a pool of inspirational music with buffs, a pool of dirges with enemy debuffs, etc.). Others could be dance-based (variations on Jester song) or magic-based (like Refinements' Stalkers' "Shadow Pool"). Etc.



I ain't no master modderquistador or anything, but I have my Spreadsheet of Organization +2 to theorycraft all the stuff I am/plan/hopefully get around to doing and organizing everything I plan into it helps overall. I also like balance. So, I'd throw my classes all in cells across the top and start going across and giving each something and keep on balancing til they all look enticing. Maybe that's what you do too, maybe you hate spreadsheets, maybe you're like my waitress at Applebees, don't write anything down and then get my burger wrong...

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Ha ha no I hate spreadsheets. I just make to-do lists on my phone. I have preserved the to-do list for Scales of Balance from the 0.3 beta to the current 3.3. It's thousands of lines long, kind of amazing to behold.

Btw a nice side effect of squeezing bards into the thief class: multiclass bards!

For bardic/magic abilities, I'm thinking something like:
- Inspiration Music/Pool: buffs for allies
- Charm Pool: charm/mental effects
- Dirge (?) Pool: adverse effects on enemies
- Illusion Pool: illusion spells
- Shadow Pool: Shadowstep, invisibility magic, maybe HiPS

Maybe also a Pool for cleric magic and one for magic/metamagic effects (Miscast, Dispel Illusions, etc.)...

Right now I'm thinking something along the lines of:
- Thief: PP, OL, FT, stealth, set traps, medium backstab
- Assassin: OL, FT, stealth, poison, high backstab
- Bounty Hunter: OL, FT, stealth, set traps, special traps, low backstab
- Scout: OL, FT, DI, stealth, set traps, combat bonuses, medium backstab
- Sniper: OL, FT, DI, stealth, poison, ranged bonuses, called shots, low backstab
- Swashbuckler: PP, OL, stealth, combat bonuses, weapon expertise, weapon display, low backstab
- Shadowdancer: OL, FT, DI, stealth, Shadow Pool, low backstab
- Blade: OL, stealth, poison, weapon expertise, weapon display, Shadow Pool, low backstab
- Jongleur: PP, OL, DI, stealth, weapon expertise, called shots, Illusion Pool
- Loremaster: OL, FT, DI, stealth, UAI, lore bonus, low backstab
- Jester: PP, OL, FT, Charm Pool, Jester Dance(s)
- Gypsy: PP, OL, FT, DI, stealth, Charm Pool, Dirge Pool
- Meistersinger: PP, stealth, Inspiration Pool, Charm Pool, animal summoning
- Bard: PP, OL, DI, Inspiration Pool, Charm Pool, Dirge Pool, Illusion Pool

- Skald: fighter kit with access to the Inspiration Pool

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Here's my first pass at bard magic "pools." More spells will be accessible in each pool as the bard reaches higher levels (from 1st to 5th in each pool), and effects will grow in power as the bard reaches higher levels (added effects after the slash).

8 pools with 5 abilities each = 40 possible spells. Still need more to fill them out though, and of course they could be expanded of it makes sense.

Songs of Inspiration
-- Song of Courage (no fear+thac0 bonus)
-- Song of Resistance (AC bonus+elem res)
-- Song of Celerity (dex bonus+speed/haste)
-- Song of Fortitude (con bonus+phys res)

-- Song of Fury (rage)

Songs of Love
-- Lullaby (sleep)
-- Song of Attraction (charm person/domination)
-- Song of Contentment (resist charm/mind shield)


Songs of Loss
-- Song of Resignation (lesser/greater malison)
-- Song of Restraint (slow/hold person)
-- Song of Frailty (enfeeblement)
-- Song of Bewilderment (confusion)


Hymnal Songs
-- Song of Healing (cure light/med/srs wounds)
-- Song of Warding (prot from evil/pfe 10')
-- Song of the Living (slow/hold undead)
-- Song of Smiting (holy smite...??)

Songs of Nature
-- (barkskin/stoneskin)
-- (entangle/spike growth)
-- (animal summoning)
-- (regeneration...??)

Thaumaturgical Music
-- (miscast field)
-- (detect invisible/dispel illusions)
-- (lower resistance)

Illusion Pool
-- (color spray)
-- (glitterdust)
-- (reflected/mirror image)
-- (bigby's hand...??)

Shadow Pool
-- (invisibility/shadow door)
-- (sanctuary)
-- (blur/wraithform)
-- (shadowstep)

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You could use the school exclusion fields to make a spell unlearnable by any mage by excluding all mage classes including generalists... and there you have a way of making bard-only spells!

Please correct me if i am wrong--please! I want to be wrong!--but I think that it is not possible to exclude a wildmage. Afaik, the exclude generalist flag doesn't exclude the wild mage. Nothing does i believe

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I'm not sure. I need to experiment to see whether the kit slots in one class can include kits from other classes. And if so, what does that do to the CharGen process.


Like, for Faiths & Powers, could we add a Loresinger/Hymnist bard kit, but add it to K_C_H.2da? If so, during CharGen, would the player choose "cleric" for class, then "Loresinger" for kit, and end up in Candlekeep with a bard? Or would the game just CTD or something?


That would only take 15 or 20 minutes to test. (I've just had trouble finding those 20 minutes!) *IF* that works, then I'll just put half of these rogue kits under the thief class and half of them under the bard class. If it doesn't work, I'll put them all under the thief class, and the bard class will be blanked out.

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kits from other classes? Impossible.

Well that's annoying. What happens if you add Berserker to K_C_H.2da? Does it just not show up?


Alternatively I could have dummy bard kits that immeditely switch you over to the thief class...


If Beamdog finally gives us scroll bars in kit selection it won't even be s. issue, they can all just go in the thief class. Jeez, what year is it, anyway?

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