Forum > Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion

Bards need to be taken back to their origins

(1/10) > >>

I’m all alone here probably, but I think the bards of 1E were the most awesome, fun to play, and cool. The bards in further editions were kind of wish-washy in both design and intent. Arcane bards with wizard spells really leave me feeling cold. And I dislike those 4E archer bards the most of all.

OSE bards kinda attempt to go back to their beginnings by giving them clerical spells, but still leave something to be desired for me.

I feel like Castles & Crusades bards, using the class and a half multiclassing rules, move towards the original design of bards best of all out of anything I have read in a while. I also really like the Hyperborea bards, as well.

Anyone else feel this way?

I think bards need to be taken back to their origins, but the origins I'm thinking of are a bit older.

I like the C&C bard, but it's really just a spellless but tough version of the 3e bard. The 1e bard is another interesting example that does capture at least some of the Celtic feel with the druid spells, lore, and so on; but even that version is a bit too much of a minstrel. Not familiar with the OSE or Hyperborean bards.

Taliesin is my idea of a bard. The problem is that requires cultural context and an alternate method of knowing and magic, and has to fight against the rockstar dilettante archetype that's become too strongly associated with bards in D&D and its influences.

The sweet spot for me is the AD&D 2E Bard and the D&D 3.x Bard. Functional jack-of-all-trades with access to a lot information from medieval media and social interaction.

Wrath of God:
Yeah, I must say within D&D I doubt it's easy to bring it back to Celtic context. Then of course Druids with their nature worship from the very get go were some weird hippy cult in D&D, not original augurs and tribal memory keepers. Sure they were associated with oaks - but most of priesthood in Northern Indoeuropean culture cared about oaks as those were holy trees (that's why Saint Boniface cut one when preaching among Saxons). Going from there to nature-tree magic was already quite off.

And augury does not works that well for RPG for obvious reasons.

So I'd probably go with what's already there - D&D as it's own genre, with own archetypes. Which means bard is somehow musical quasi-magician.
I sort of enjoy them being truly jacks of all trades. It would sort of pull together their insane history through edition - druidic, divine, rougish, magical magic boosters, arcane lore, arcane leader in 4e, psychic spellcaster in PF2. Put it all into big mixer and crush together.

I'd go more with sage as basic social role, with minstrel being just on many options of jacky nature of bard, but their overall combat-utlity roles I'd well how to say it. If we were using 4E, he'd be able to take powers from each power source and class (though with power limits stronger than them) and be forced to take them from at least 3 sources. Mess.

Gog to Magog:
AD&D 2E is also my sweet spot for the Bard. I honestly hate the 'magic music' version of Bard in any iteration from video games to tabletop. I hate it. It's just so insipid and makes combat a farce.

If I want to fight people with music, I'll play a dubstep, bass-dropping, flesh-liquefying Noise Marine, thank you very much.


[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version