View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Custom Bard School: College of Etymology

2018-03-30, 11:16 AM
I have a newer player who chose to play as a Bard, as the games progressed she felt that she was overshadowed by the rest of the group. I spent time talking to her about what a Bard was capable of in many different aspects, trying to get a feel for what she wanted out of her story. None of the Colleges seemed to fit what she was looking to accomplish and I wanted to give her something that fit with her goals. I also figured out while talking to her that someone who is less familiar with D&D as a whole will easily find a Bard lackluster. The intricacies of being a skill monkey and a jack-of-all-trades is hard to grasp when you don't understand more than one or two classes and their abilities. I set out on a mission to create a unique College and set it up in a way that could facilitate a newer player while still allowing the freedom that a Bard has as a class.

This College is based loosely on a character from a series I once read, I tried to put it together so that the use of both melee and magic were available. I would like to get feed-back from you guys. Feel free to play test it, critique it, and debate it. I want to find out if it's balanced and enjoyable. So far, in my campaign, it's proven to be well received by all of my players. All I ask is you give me a nod if you use this, Thanks!

Bard - College of Etymology

Bonus Proficiencies:

When you join the College of Etymology at 3rd level, you gain proficiency with Arcana and History and in 2 languages of your choice. If you are already proficient in either skill you can choose any other skill to replace it.

Inspired Words:

Also at 3rd level you are learning the notes and words associated to the energies of the universe. You gain the ability to spend an amount of Bardic Inspiration uses, up to your maximum spell level, to cast any spell of a level equal to the Bardic Inspiration uses you spent. You can do this once per long rest.

First Verse:

When you are 6th level you are able to string the words and notes of creation into a cohesive stanza. Using a Bardic Inspiration you can attune yourself to an element of your choice from; Acid, Cold, Fire, Lightning, or Thunder gaining resistance to that element. You can also choose to either add that element as damage on a successful melee attack or as a defensive aura which causes damage when you are successfully hit by a melee attack. The damage dealt is equal to the die used for your Bardic Inspiration. The effects last for 1 minute and cannot be changed during that time unless another Bardic Inspiration is spent.

Requiem Temporal:

At level 14 You have learned the harmonies of reality, using this new found power you can re-write any recent event that has happened in your presence to occur in a manner you see fit, a taxing effort that drains the Bard of power for a time. Using one Bardic Inspiration you can change the outcome of any one roll made in the past 30 seconds to be what you desire. This can be used to change a failure to a success, maximize your damage, cause a death saving throw to succeed, even change the effect from a Wand of Wonder. When this ability is used the Bardic Inspiration spent is temporarily removed from your pool for 1d6+1 days.

Exalted Words:

Also at 14th level if you expend your maximum Bardic Inspiration uses when using Inspired Words to cast a spell, you may cast any spell up to your maximum spell level. If you are missing any Bardic Inspiration due to Requiem Temporal you can only cast a spell up to the amount of Bardic Inspiration you have access to.

2018-03-30, 11:33 AM
Looks pretty neat, up to 14th. At that point I'd say drop the second ability and make the reroll 1/long rest, but without the long-term reduction

2018-03-30, 12:22 PM
I realized I pasted an older version of the College. Duration for Requiem Temporal was reduced to 1d6+1 days, this allows the player to use it more often.

Looks pretty neat, up to 14th. At that point I'd say drop the second ability and make the reroll 1/long rest, but without the long-term reduction

The reason for having both is to give pause to the player to consider resource management. With the full allotment of Bardic Inspiration they could essentially cast any spell up to 9th level every time they have a short rest (Font of Inspiration). If they have used Requiem Temporal then they are limited to a maximum spell level equal to their remaining Bardic Inspiration points. Assuming no other bonuses, they'd have 5 BI with a 20 Cha, so if they use Requiem Temporal they'd only be able to use Exalted Words to cast up to a 4th level spell, use Requiem Temporal again you're down to 3rd level, and so on. Does that change your view or would you still drop Exalted Words for the 1/long rest?