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Subclass Comparison Book View

BARBARIAN
[‒]
BARBARIAN Hit Points
Hit Dice: 1d12
Level Proficiency Bonus Features Rages Rage Damage
Hit Points at 1st Level: 12 + your
1st +2 Rage, Unarmored Defense 2 +2 Constitution modifier
2nd +2 Danger Sense, Reckless Attack 2 +2 Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d12 (or 7) +
3rd +2 Primal Path 3 +2 your Constitution modifier per Barbarian
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement 3 +2 level after 1st
5th +3 Extra Attack, Fast Movement 3 +2 Proficiencies
Armor: light armor, medium armor,
6th +3 Path Feature 4 +2
shields
7th +3 Feral Instinct 4 +2 Weapons: simple weapons, martial
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement 4 +2 weapons
9th +4 Brutal Critical (1 die) 4 +3 Tools: none
10th +4 Path feature 4 +3 Saving Throws: Strength, Constitution
Skills: Choose two from Animal
11th +4 Relentless Rage 4 +3
Handling, Athletics, Intimidation, Nature, P
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement 5 +3 erception, and Survival.
13th +5 Brutal Critical (2 dice) 5 +3 Starting Equipment
14th +5 Path feature 5 +3 You start with the following items, plus
15th +5 Persistent Rage 5 +3 anything provided by your background.
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement 5 +4 • (a) a greataxe or (b) any martial
17th +6 Brutal Critical (3 dice) 6 +4 melee weapon
18th +6 Indomitable Might 6 +4 • (a) two handaxes or (b) any simple
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement 6 +4 weapon
Unlimit • An explorer's pack, and
20th +6 Primal Champion +4
ed four javelins
Alternatively, you may start with 2d4 ×
10 gp to buy your own equipment.

Multiclassing
To qualify for a new class, you must meet
the ability score prerequisites for both your
current class and your new one.
Ability Score Minimum: Strength 13
When you gain a level in a class other than
your first, you gain only some of that
class's starting proficiencies.
Armor: shields
Weapons: simple weapons, martial
weapons

BARBARIANPHB P46
A tall human tribesman strides through a blizzard, draped in fur and hefting his axe. He laughs as he
charges toward the frost giant who dared poach his people's elk herd.
A half-orc snarls at the latest challenger to her authority over their savage tribe, ready to break his
neck with her bare hands as she did to the last six rivals.
Frothing at the mouth, a dwarf slams his helmet into the face of his drow foe, then turns to drive his
armored elbow into the gut of another.
These barbarians, different as they might be, are defined by their rage: unbridled, unquenchable,
and unthinking fury. More than a mere emotion, their anger is the ferocity of a cornered predator,
the unrelenting assault of a storm, the churning turmoil of the sea.
For some, their rage springs from a communion with fierce animal spirits. Others draw from a
roiling reservoir of anger at a world full of pain. For every barbarian, rage is a power that fuels not
just a battle frenzy but also uncanny reflexes, resilience, and feats of strength.
PRIMAL INSTINCT
People of towns and cities take pride in how their civilized ways set them apart from animals, as if
denying one's own nature was a mark of superiority. To a barbarian, though, civilization is no virtue,
but a sign of weakness. The strong embrace their animal nature—keen instincts, primal physicality,
and ferocious rage. Barbarians are uncomfortable when hedged in by walls and crowds. They thrive
in the wilds of their homelands: the tundra, jungle, or grasslands where their tribes live and hunt.
Barbarians come alive in the chaos of combat. They can enter a berserk state where rage takes over,
giving them superhuman strength and resilience. A barbarian can draw on this reservoir of fury only
a few times without resting, but those few rages are usually sufficient to defeat whatever threats
arise.
A LIFE OF DANGER
Not every member of the tribes deemed "barbarians" by scions of civilized society has the barbarian
class. A true barbarian among these people is as uncommon as a skilled fighter in a town, and he or
she plays a similar role as a protector of the people and a leader in times of war. Life in the wild
places of the world is fraught with peril: rival tribes, deadly weather, and terrifying monsters.
Barbarians charge headlong into that danger so that their people don't have to.
Their courage in the face of danger makes barbarians perfectly suited for adventuring. Wandering is
often a way of life for their native tribes, and the rootless life of the adventurer is little hardship for
a barbarian. Some barbarians miss the close-knit family structures of the tribe, but eventually find
them replaced by the bonds formed among the members of their adventuring parties.
CREATING A BARBARIAN
When creating a barbarian character, think about where your character comes from and his or her
place in the world. Talk with your DM about an appropriate origin for your barbarian. Did you
come from a distant land, making you a stranger in the area of the campaign? Or is the campaign set
in a rough-and-tumble frontier where barbarians are common?
What led you to take up the adventuring life? Were you lured to settled lands by the promise of
riches? Did you join forces with soldiers of those lands to face a shared threat? Did monsters or an
invading horde drive you out of your homeland, making you a rootless refugee? Perhaps you were a
prisoner of war, brought in chains to "civilized" lands and only now able to win your freedom. Or
you might have been cast out from your people because of a crime you committed, a taboo you
violated, or a coup that removed you from a position of authority.
QUICK BUILD
You can make a barbarian quickly by following these suggestions. First, put your highest ability
score in Strength, followed by Constitution. Second, choose the outlander background.
The following information is from Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, page 8.
I have witnessed the indomitable performance of barbarians on the field of battle, and it makes me
wonder what force lies at the heart of their rage.— Seret, archwizard
The anger felt by a normal person resembles the rage of a barbarian in the same way that a gentle
breeze is akin to a furious thunderstorm. The barbarian's driving force comes from a place that
transcends mere emotion, making its manifestation all the more terrible. Whether the impetus for
the fury comes entirely from within or from forging a link with a spirit animal, a raging barbarian
becomes able to perform supernatural feats of strength and endurance. The outburst is temporary,
but while it lasts, it takes over body and mind, driving the barbarian on despite peril and injury, until
the last enemy falls.
It can be tempting to play a barbarian character that is a straightforward application of the classic
archetype—a brute, and usually a dimwitted one at that, who rushes in where others fear to tread.
But not all the barbarians in the world are cut from that cloth, so you can certainly put your own
spin on things. Either way, consider adding some flourishes to make your barbarian stand out from
all others; see the following sections for some ideas.
PERSONAL TOTEMS
Barbarians tend to travel light, carrying little in the way of personal effects or other unnecessary
gear. The few possessions they do carry often include small items that have special significance. A
personal totem is significant because it has a mystical origin or is tied to an important moment in
the character's life—perhaps a remembrance from the barbarian's past or a harbinger of what lies
ahead.
A personal totem of this sort might be associated with a barbarian's spirit animal, or might actually
be the totem object for the animal, but such a connection is not essential. One who has a bear totem
spirit, for instance, could still carry an eagle's feather as a personal totem.
Consider creating one or more personal totems for your character—objects that hold a special link
to your character's past or future. Think about how a totem might affect your character's actions.
Personal Totems
d6 Totem
1 A tuft of fur from a solitary wolf that you befriended during a hunt
Three eagle feathers given to you by a wise shaman, who told you they would play a role in
2
determining your fate
3 A necklace made from the claws of a young cave bear that you slew singlehandedly as a child
4 A small leather pouch holding three stones that represent your ancestors
5 A few small bones from the first beast you killed, tied together with colored wool
6 An egg-sized stone in the shape of your spirit animal that appeared one day in your belt pouch
TATTOOS
The members of many barbarian clans decorate their bodies with tattoos, each of which represents a
significant moment in the life of the bearer or the bearer's ancestors, or which symbolizes a feeling
or an attitude. As with personal totems, a barbarian's tattoos might or might not be related to an
animal spirit.
Each tattoo a barbarian displays contributes to that individual's identity. If your character wears
tattoos, what do they look like, and what do they represent?
Tattoos
d6 Tattoo
1 The wings of an eagle are spread wide across your upper back.
2 Etched on the backs of your hands are the paws of a cave bear.
3 The symbols of your clan are displayed in viny patterns along your arms.
4 The antlers of an elk are inked across your back.
5 Images of your spirit animal are tattooed along your weapon arm and hand.
6 The eyes of a wolf are marked on your back to help you see and ward off evil spirits.
SUPERSTITIONS
Barbarians vary widely in how they understand life. Some follow gods and look for guidance from
those deities in the cycles of nature and the animals they encounter. These barbarians believe that
spirits inhabit the plants and animals of the world, and the barbarians look to them for omens and
power.
Other barbarians trust only in the blood that runs in their veins and the steel they hold in their hands.
They have no use for the invisible world, instead relying on their senses to hunt and survive like the
wild beasts they emulate.
Both of these attitudes can give rise to superstitions. These beliefs are often passed down within a
family or shared among the members of a clan or a hunting group.
If your barbarian character has any superstitions, were they ingrained in you by your family, or are
they the result of personal experience?
Superstition
d6 Superstition
1 If you disturb the bones of the dead, you inherit all the troubles that plagued them in life.
2 Never trust a wizard. They're all devils in disguise, especially the friendly ones.
Dwarves have lost their spirits, and are almost like the undead. That's why they live
3
underground.
4 Magical things bring trouble. Never sleep with a magic object within ten feet of you.
When you walk through a graveyard, be sure to wear silver, or a ghost might jump into your
5
body.
6 If an elf looks you in the eyes, she's trying to read your thoughts.
RAGE
In battle, you fight with primal ferocity. On your turn, you can enter a rage as a bonus action.
While raging, you gain the following benefits if you aren't wearing heavy armor:
• You have advantage on Strength checks and Strength saving throws.
• When you make a melee weapon attack using Strength, you gain a +2 bonus to the damage
roll. This bonus increases as you level.
• You have resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.
If you are able to cast spells, you can't cast them or concentrate on them while raging.
Your rage lasts for 1 minute. It ends early if you are knocked unconscious or if your turn ends and
you haven't attacked a hostile creature since your last turn or taken damage since then. You can also
end your rage on your turn as a bonus action.
Once you have raged the maximum number of times for your barbarian level, you must finish a
long rest before you can rage again. You may rage 2 times at 1st level, 3 at 3rd, 4 at 6th, 5 at 12th,
and 6 at 17th.
UNARMORED DEFENSE
While you are not wearing any armor, your Armor Class equals 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your
Constitution modifier. You can use a shield and still gain this benefit.
DANGER SENSE
At 2nd level, you gain an uncanny sense of when things nearby aren't as they should be, giving you
an edge when you dodge away from danger. You have advantage on Dexterity saving throws against
effects that you can see, such as traps and spells. To gain this benefit, you can't
be blinded, deafened, or incapacitated.
RECKLESS ATTACK
Starting at 2nd level, you can throw aside all concern for defense to attack with fierce desperation.
When you make your first attack on your turn, you can decide to attack recklessly. Doing so gives
you advantage on melee weapon attack rolls using Strength during this turn, but attack rolls against
you have advantage until your next turn.
PRIMAL PATH
At 3rd level, you choose a path that shapes the nature of your rage from the list of available paths.
Your choice grants you features at 3rd level and again at 6th, 10th, and 14th levels.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 4th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
EXTRA ATTACK
Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action
on your turn.
FAST MOVEMENT
Starting at 5th level, your speed increases by 10 feet while you aren't wearing heavy armor.
PATH FEATURE
At 6th level, you gain a feature from your Primal Path.
FERAL INSTINCT
By 7th level, your instincts are so honed that you have advantage on initiative rolls.
Additionally, if you are surprised at the beginning of combat and aren't incapacitated, you can act
normally on your first turn, but only if you enter your rage before doing anything else on that turn.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 8th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM uses the optional Feats, you can instead take a feat.
BRUTAL CRITICAL (1 DIE)
Beginning at 9th level, you can roll one additional weapon damage die when determining the extra
damage for a critical hit with a melee attack.
This increases to two additional dice at 13th level and three additional dice at 17th level.
PATH FEATURE
At 10th level, you gain a feature from your Primal Path.
RELENTLESS RAGE
Starting at 11th level, your rage can keep you fighting despite grievous wounds. If you drop to 0 hit
points while you're raging and don't die outright, you can make a DC 10 Constitution saving throw.
If you succeed, you drop to 1 hit point instead.
Each time you use this feature after the first, the DC increases by 5. When you finish a short or long
rest, the DC resets to 10.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 12th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM uses the optional Feats, you can instead take a feat.
BRUTAL CRITICAL (2 DICE)
At 13th level, you can roll two additional weapon damage dice when determining the extra damage
for a critical hit with a melee attack.
This increases to three additional dice at 17th level.
PATH FEATURE
At 14th level, you gain a feature from your Primal Path.
PERSISTENT RAGE
Beginning at 15th level, your rage is so fierce that it ends early only if you fall unconscious or if
you choose to end it.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 16th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM uses the optional Feats, you can instead take a feat.
BRUTAL CRITICAL (3 DICE)
At 17th level, you can roll three additional weapon damage dice when determining the extra
damage for a critical hit with a melee attack.
INDOMITABLE MIGHT
Beginning at 18th level, if your total for a Strength check is less than your Strength score, you can
use that score in place of the total.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM uses the optional Feats, you can instead take a feat.
PRIMAL CHAMPION
At 20th level, you embody the power of the wilds. Your Strength and Constitution scores increase
by 4. Your maximum for those scores is now 24.
BARD
[‒]
BARD Hit Points
Hit Dice:
Spell
1d8Slots per Spell Level
Proficiency Cantrips Spells Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + your
Level Features 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
Bonus Known Known Constitution modifier
1st +2 Bardic Inspiration, Spellcasting 2 4 Hit2 Points
— at —Higher
— —Levels:
— — 1d8 —
(or 5)
—+
your Constitution modifier per Bard level
Jack of All Trades, Song of after
2nd +2 2 5 3 1st
— — — — — — — —
Rest (d6)
Proficiencies
3rd +2 Bard College, Expertise 2 6 4 2 — — — — — — —
Armor: light armor
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement 3 7 4 3 simple
Weapons: — —weapons,
— — hand — — —
Bardic Inspiration (d8), Font of crossbows, longswords, rapiers,
5th +3 3 8 4 3 2 — — — — — —
Inspiration shortswords
Countercharm, Bard College Tools: three musical instruments of your
6th +3 3 9 4 3
choice 3 — — — — — —
feature
7th +3 — 3 10 Saving
4 3Throws:3 1Dexterity,
— —Charisma
— — —
Skills: Choose any three.
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement 3 11 4 3 3 2 — — — — —
Starting Equipment
9th +4 Song of Rest (d8) 3 12 4 3 3 3 1 — — — —
You start with the following items, plus
Bardic Inspiration (d10), anything
10th +4 4 14 4 3 provided
3 3 by2your—background.
— — —
Expertise, Magical Secrets
11th +4 — 4 15 4• 3(a) a 3rapier,
3 (b)2 a longsword,
1 — —or — (c)
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement 4 15 4 3any simple
3 3 weapon 2 1 — — —
13th +5 Song of Rest (d10) 4 16 4• 3(a) a 3 3 2 pack
diplomat's 1 or1(b) — —
an entertainer's pack
Magical Secrets, Bard College
14th +5 4 18 4 • 3(a) a 3lute 3or (b)2 any1 other
1 musical
— —
feature
15th +5 Bardic Inspiration (d12) 4 19 4 3instrument
3 3 2 1 1 1 —
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement 4 19 •
4 3 Leather
3 armor,
3 2 and1a dagger 1 1 —
17th +6 Song of Rest (d12) 4 20 Alternatively,
4 3 3 you3 may 2 start
1 with
1 5d4
1 ×1
18th +6 Magical Secrets 4 22 104gp to3 buy3your3 own 3 equipment.
1 1 1 1
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement 4 22 4 3
Multiclassing 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
20th +6 Superior Inspiration 4 22 To4qualify
3 for 3 a new
3 class,
3 2you2must1 meet 1
the ability score prerequisites for both your
current class and your new one.
Ability Score Minimum: Charisma 13
When you gain a level in a class other than
your first, you gain only some of that
class's starting proficiencies.
Armor: light armor
Tools: one musical instrument of your
choice
Skills: Choose any one.

BARDPHB P51
Humming as she traces her fingers over an ancient monument in a long-forgotten ruin, a half-elf in
rugged leathers finds knowledge springing into her mind, conjured forth by the magic of her song—
knowledge of the people who constructed the monument and the mythic saga it depicts.
A stern human warrior bangs his sword rhythmically against his scale mail, setting the tempo for his
war chant and exhorting his companions to bravery and heroism. The magic of his song fortifies
and emboldens them.
Laughing as she tunes her cittern, a gnome weaves her subtle magic over the assembled nobles,
ensuring that her companions' words will be well received.
Whether scholar, skald, or scoundrel, a bard weaves magic through words and music to inspire
allies, demoralize foes, manipulate minds, create illusions, and even heal wounds.
MUSIC AND MAGIC
In the worlds of D&D, words and music are not just vibrations of air, but vocalizations with power
all their own. The bard is a master of song, speech, and the magic they contain. Bards say that the
multiverse was spoken into existence, that the words of the gods gave it shape, and that echoes of
these primordial Words of Creation still resound throughout the cosmos. The music of bards is an
attempt to snatch and harness those echoes, subtly woven into their spells and powers.
The greatest strength of bards is their sheer versatility. Many bards prefer to stick to the sidelines in
combat, using their magic to inspire their allies and hinder their foes from a distance. But bards are
capable of defending themselves in melee if necessary, using their magic to bolster their swords and
armor. Their spells lean toward charms and illusions rather than blatantly destructive spells. They
have a wide-ranging knowledge of many subjects and a natural aptitude that lets them do almost
anything well. Bards become masters of the talents they set their minds to perfecting, from musical
performance to esoteric knowledge.
LEARNING FROM EXPERIENCE
True bards are not common in the world. Not every minstrel singing in a tavern or jester cavorting
in a royal court is a bard. Discovering the magic hidden in music requires hard study and some
measure of natural talent that most troubadours and jongleurs lack. It can be hard to spot the
difference between these performers and true bards, though. A bard's life is spent wandering across
the land gathering lore, telling stories, and living on the gratitude of audiences, much like any other
entertainer. But a depth of knowledge, a level of musical skill, and a touch of magic set bards apart
from their fellows.
Only rarely do bards settle in one place for long, and their natural desire to travel—to find new tales
to tell, new skills to learn, and new discoveries beyond the horizon—makes an adventuring career a
natural calling. Every adventure is an opportunity to learn, practice a variety of skills, enter long-
forgotten tombs, discover lost works of magic, decipher old tomes, travel to strange places, or
encounter exotic creatures. Bards love to accompany heroes to witness their deeds firsthand. A bard
who can tell an awe-inspiring story from personal experience earns renown among other bards.
Indeed, after telling so many stories about heroes accomplishing mighty deeds, many bards take
these themes to heart and assume heroic roles themselves.
CREATING A BARD
Bards thrive on stories, whether those stories are true or not. Your character's background and
motivations are not as important as the stories that he or she tells about them. Perhaps you had a
secure and mundane childhood. There's no good story to be told about that, so you might paint
yourself as an orphan raised by a hag in a dismal swamp. Or your childhood might be worthy of a
story. Some bards acquire their magical music through extraordinary means, including the
inspiration of fey or other supernatural creatures.
Did you serve an apprenticeship, studying under a master, following the more experienced bard
until you were ready to strike out on your own? Or did you attend a college where you studied
bardic lore and practiced your musical magic? Perhaps you were a young runaway or orphan,
befriended by a wandering bard who became your mentor. Or you might have been a spoiled noble
child tutored by a master. Perhaps you stumbled into the clutches of a hag, making a bargain for a
musical gift in addition to your life and freedom, but at what cost?
QUICK BUILD
You can make a bard quickly by following these suggestions. First, Charisma should be your
highest ability score, followed by Dexterity. Second, choose the entertainer background. Third,
choose the dancing lights and vicious mockery cantrips, along with the following 1st-level
spells: charm person, detect magic, healing word, and thunderwave.

The following information is from Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, page 12.


Music is the fruit of the divine tree that vibrates with the Words of Creation. But the question I ask
you is, can a bard go to the root of this tree? Can one tap into the source of that power? Ah, then
what manner of music they would bring to this world!— Fletcher Danairia, master bard
Bards bring levity during grave times; they impart wisdom to offset ignorance; and they make the
ridiculous seem sublime. Bards are preservers of ancient history, their songs and tales perpetuating
the memory of great events down through time—knowledge so important that it is memorized and
passed along as oral history, to survive even when no written record remains.
It is also the bard's role to chronicle smaller and more contemporary events—the stories of today's
heroes, including their feats of valor as well as their less than impressive failures.
Of course, the world has many people who can carry a tune or tell a good story, and there's much
more to any adventuring bard than a glib tongue and a melodious voice. Yet what truly sets bards
apart from others—and from one another—are the style and substance of their performances.
To grab and hold the attention of an audience, bards are typically flamboyant and outgoing when
they perform. The most famous of them are essentially the D&D world's equivalent of pop stars. If
you're playing a bard, consider using one of your favorite musicians as a role model for your
character.
You can add some unique aspects to your bard character by considering the suggestions that follow.
DEFINING WORK
Every successful bard is renowned for at least one piece of performance art, typically a song or a
poem that is popular with everyone who hears it. These performances are spoken about for years by
those who view them, and some spectators have had their lives forever changed because of the
experience.
If your character is just starting out, your ultimate defining work is likely in the future. But in order
to make any sort of living at your profession, chances are you already have a piece or two in your
repertoire that have proven to be audience pleasers.
Defining Work
d6 Defining Work
1 "The Three Flambinis," a ribald song concerning mistaken identities and unfettered desire
2 "Waltz of the Myconids," an upbeat tune that children in particular enjoy
"Asmodeus's Golden Arse," a dramatic poem you claim was inspired by your personal visit to
3
Avernus
4 "The Pirates of Luskan," your firsthand account of being kidnapped by sea reavers as a child
5 "A Hoop, Two Pigeons, and a Hell Hound," a subtle parody of an incompetent noble
6 "A Fool in the Abyss," a comedic poem about a jester's travels among demons
INSTRUMENT
In a bard's quest for the ultimate performance and the highest acclaim, one's instrument is at least as
important as one's vocal ability. The instrument's quality of manufacture is a critical factor, of
course; the best ones make the best music, and some bards are continually on the lookout for an
improvement. Perhaps just as important, though, is the instrument's own entertainment value; those
that are bizarrely constructed or made of exotic materials are likely to leave a lasting impression on
an audience.
You might have an "off the rack" instrument, perhaps because it's all you can afford right now. Or, if
your first instrument was gifted to you, it might be of a more elaborate sort. Are you satisfied with
the instrument you have, or do you aspire to replace it with something truly distinctive?
Instrument
d6 Instrument
1 A masterfully crafted halfling fiddle
2 A mithral horn made by elves
3 A zither made with drow spider silk
4 An orcish drum
5 A wooden bullywug croak box
6 A tinker's harp of gnomish design
EMBARRASSMENT
Almost every bard has suffered at least one bad experience in front of an audience, and chances are
you're no exception. No one becomes famous right away, after all; perhaps you had a few small
difficulties early in your career, or maybe it took you a while to restore your reputation after one
agonizing night when the fates conspired to bring about your theatrical ruin.
The ways that a performance can go wrong are as varied as the fish in the sea. No matter what sort
of disaster might occur, however, a bard has the courage and the confidence to rebound from it—
either pressing on with the show (if possible) or promising to come back tomorrow with a new
performance that's guaranteed to please.
Embarrassment
d6 Embarrassment
The time when your comedic song, "Big Tom's Hijinks"—which, by the way, you thought was
1
brilliant—did not go over well with Big Tom
2 The matinee performance when a circus's owlbear got loose and terrorized the crowd
When your opening song was your enthusiastic but universally hated rendition of "Song of the
3
Froghemoth"
4 The first and last public performance of "Mirt, Man about Town"
5 The time on stage when your wig caught fire and you threw it down—which set fire to the stage
6 When you sat on your lute by mistake during the final stanza of "Starlight Serenade"
A BARD'S MUSE
Naturally, every bard has a repertoire of songs and stories. Some bards are generalists who can draw
from a wide range of topics for each performance, and who take pride in their versatility. Others
adopt a more personal approach to their art, driven by their attachment to a muse—a particular
concept that inspires much of what those bards do in front of an audience.
A bard who follows a muse generally does so to gain a deeper understanding of what that muse
represents and how to best convey that understanding to others through performance.
If your bard character has a muse, it could be one of the three described here, or one of your own
devising.
Nature.
You feel a kinship with the natural world, and its beauty and mystery inspire you. For you, a tree is
deeply symbolic, its roots delving into the dark unknown to draw forth the power of the earth, while
its branches reach toward the sun to nourish their flowers and fruit. Nature is the ancient witness
who has seen every kingdom rise and fall, even those whose names have been forgotten and wait to
be rediscovered. The gods of nature share their secrets with druids and sages, opening their hearts
and minds to new ways of seeing, and as with those individuals, you find that your creativity
blossoms while you wander in an open field of waving grass or walk in silent reverence through a
grove of ancient oaks.
Love.
You are on a quest to identify the essence of true love. Though you do not disdain the superficial
love of flesh and form, the deeper form of love that can inspire thousands or bring joy to one's every
moment is what you are interested in. Love of this sort takes on many forms, and you can see its
presence everywhere—from the sparkling of a beautiful gem to the song of a simple fisher thanking
the sea for its bounty. You are on the trail of love, that most precious and mysterious of emotions,
and your search fills your stories and your songs with vitality and passion.
Conflict.
Drama embodies conflict, and the best stories have conflict as a key element. From the morning-
after tale of a tavern brawl to the saga of an epic battle, from a lover's spat to a rift between
powerful dynasties, conflict is what inspires tale-tellers like you to create your best work. Conflict
can bring out the best in some people, causing their heroic nature to shine forth and transform the
world, but it can cause others to gravitate toward darkness and fall under the sway of evil. You
strive to experience or witness all forms of conflict, great and small, so as to study this eternal
aspect of life and immortalize it in your words and music.
BARDIC INSPIRATION
You can inspire others through stirring words or music. To do so, you use a bonus action on your
turn to choose one creature other than yourself within 60 feet of you who can hear you. That
creature gains one Bardic Inspiration die, a d6.
Once within the next 10 minutes, the creature can roll the die and add the number rolled to one
ability check, attack roll, or saving throw it makes. The creature can wait until after it rolls
the d20 before deciding to use the Bardic Inspiration die, but must decide before the DM says
whether the roll succeeds or fails. Once the Bardic Inspiration die is rolled, it is lost. A creature can
have only one Bardic Inspiration die at a time.
You can use this feature a number of times equal to your Charisma modifier (a minimum of once).
You regain any expended uses when you finish a long rest.
Your Bardic Inspiration die changes when you reach certain levels in this class. The die becomes
a d8 at 5th level, a d10 at 10th level, and a d12 at 15th level.
SPELLCASTING
You have learned to untangle and reshape the fabric of reality in harmony with your wishes and
music. Your spells are part of your vast repertoire, magic that you can tune to different situations.
See chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting and chapter 11 for the bard spell list.
CANTRIPS
You know two cantrips of your choice from the bard spell list. You learn additional bard cantrips of
your choice at higher levels, learning a 3rd cantrip at 4th level and a 4th at 10th level.
SPELL SLOTS
The Bard table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your bard spells of 1st level and higher.
To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell's level or higher. You regain all
expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.
For example, if you know the 1st-level spell cure wounds and have a 1st-level and a 2nd-level spell
slot available, you can cast cure wounds using either slot.
SPELLS KNOWN OF 1ST LEVEL AND HIGHER
You know four 1st-level spells of your choice from the bard spell list.
You learn an additional bard spell of your choice at each level except 12th, 16th, 19th, and 20th.
Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots. For instance, when you reach
3rd level in this class, you can learn one new spell of 1st or 2nd level.
Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the bard spells you know
and replace it with another spell from the bard spell list, which also must be of a level for which you
have spell slots.
SPELLCASTING ABILITY
Charisma is your spellcasting ability for your bard spells. Your magic comes from the heart and soul
you pour into the performance of your music or oration. You use your Charisma whenever a spell
refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Charisma modifier when setting the
saving throw DC for a bard spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.
Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier
Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier
RITUAL CASTING
You can cast any bard spell you know as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag.
SPELLCASTING FOCUS
You can use a musical instrument (found in chapter 5) as a spellcasting focus for your bard spells.
JACK OF ALL TRADES
Starting at 2nd level, you can add half your proficiency bonus, rounded down, to any ability check
you make that doesn't already include your proficiency bonus.
SONG OF REST (D6)
Beginning at 2nd level, you can use soothing music or oration to help revitalize your wounded allies
during a short rest. If you or any friendly creatures who can hear your performance regain hit points
by spending Hit Dice at the end of the short rest, each of those creatures regains an extra 1d6 hit
points.
The extra hit points increase when you reach certain levels in this class: to 1d8 at 9th level,
to 1d10 at 13th level, and to 1d12 at 17th level.
BARD COLLEGE
At 3rd level, you delve into the advanced techniques of a bard college of your choice from the list
of available colleges. Your choice grants you features at 3rd level and again at 6th and 14th level.
EXPERTISE
At 3rd level, choose two of your skill proficiencies. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any
ability check you make that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.
At 10th level, you can choose another two skill proficiencies to gain this benefit.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 4th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
BARDIC INSPIRATION (D8)
At 5th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d8.
FONT OF INSPIRATION
Beginning when you reach 5th level, you regain all of your expended uses of Bardic Inspiration
when you finish a short or long rest.
COUNTERCHARM
At 6th level, you gain the ability to use musical notes or words of power to disrupt mind-influencing
effects. As an action, you can start a performance that lasts until the end of your next turn. During
that time, you and any friendly creatures within 30 feet of you have advantage on saving throws
against being frightened or charmed. A creature must be able to hear you to gain this benefit. The
performance ends early if you are incapacitated or silenced or if you voluntarily end it (no action
required).
BARD COLLEGE FEATURE
At 6th level, you gain a feature from your Bard College.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 8th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
SONG OF REST (D8)
At 9th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d8.
BARDIC INSPIRATION (D10)
At 10th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d10.
EXPERTISE
At 10th level, you can choose another two skill proficiencies. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for
any ability check you make that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.
MAGICAL SECRETS
By 10th level, you have plundered magical knowledge from a wide spectrum of disciplines. Choose
two spells from any classes, including this one. A spell you choose must be of a level you can cast,
as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.
The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known
column of the Bard table.
You learn two additional spells from any classes at 14th level and again at 18th level.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 12th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
SONG OF REST (D10)
At 13th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d10.
MAGICAL SECRETS
At 14th level, choose two additional spells from any classes, including this one. A spell you choose
must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.
The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known
column of the Bard table.
BARD COLLEGE FEATURE
At 14th level, you gain a feature from your Bard College.
BARDIC INSPIRATION (D12)
At 15th level, your Bardic Inspiration die changes to a d12.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 16th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
SONG OF REST (D12)
At 17th level, the extra hit points gained from Song of Rest increases to 1d12.
MAGICAL SECRETS
At 18th level, choose two additional spells from any class, including this one. A spell you choose
must be of a level you can cast, as shown on the Bard table, or a cantrip.
The chosen spells count as bard spells for you and are included in the number in the Spells Known
column of the Bard table.
ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can
increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above
20 using this feature.
If your DM allows the use of feats, you may instead take a feat.
SUPERIOR INSPIRATION
At 20th level, when you roll initiative and have no uses of Bardic Inspiration left, you regain one
use.