Bard

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Description

Bards are jack-of-all-trades adventurers who use songs to create a wide variety of magical effects. Though they often use melee weapons, bards are primarily a magic-using class, with the ability to wear plate armor and wield many different types of weapons and instruments.

Bards can do a little bit of everything. Their songs can regenerate health and mana, increase attack speed and accuracy, momentarily charm angry enemies, help friends resist many types of damage and even directly damage enemies. Bards are perhaps best known, however, for their ability to greatly increase the foot speed of their group.

Bards have the unique ability to create multiple effects at once. By weaving different songs together, a bard can customize effects to any situation. This makes nimble fingers and quick thinking a must for those who want to play a bard.

Bards do well both alone and in groups. With the right combination of songs, they can adapt to many different challenges. The bard is a great class for players who enjoy a wide variety of play options but are quick to adapt to a changing situation.

Class Titles

Level 1-50 Level 51-54 Level 55-59 Level 60
Bard Minstrel Troubadour Virtuoso

Creation Guide

Picking the Right Race

The first thing you have to pick then is your race. Which race you pick will determine the foundation of you character for the rest of your life in Norrath so it is kind of important you pick one you like. The majority of Bards tend to be Half-Elves since they have the highest overall melee stats. Wood Elves trade off their strength in damage for some extra agility in avoiding being hit. Humans, like always, have consistent base stats.

Humans are the only race with no night vision abilities, and none of the races level any faster than another. Since all Bards get the ability to hide and forage, the wood-elves natural abilities are not so important.

File:Bard-stats.png

Spending Your Bonus Points

There are no definitive ways to spend your bonus points, but here are some guidelines for each statistic:

  • Strength affects how often bards hit for maximum damage and also the bard's ability to carry armor and treasure. Plate armor, which bards wear, is generally among the heaviest of armors while bard melee damage is amongst the lowest for all melee classes. Strength is also an easy stat to raise with gear and buffs. This is an OK location to allocate creation points.
  • Stamina affects your total hitpoints. The conversion to raw Hit Points from Stamina is only mediocre for bards, but Stamina is a good statistic to put extra points for any class, bards included.
  • Agility affects how often melee attacks miss the bard, as well as the bard' armor class. Since bards are not tanks, and the returns on this statistic are minimal, it is recommended to avoid adding additional points to Agility.
  • Dexterity affects how often weapons proc and reduces the chance to miss a note, bringing your song to a close (fizzle). In a test comparing 100 songs on a 60 bard with 100 base DEX, 7 notes were missed. On geared 167 total DEX, 131 songs before a single note was missed. (Small sample, not definitive)
  • Wisdom does not affect the size of a bardic mana pool, as bards are considered intelligence casters. This statistic serves no function for a bard and additional creation points should not be spent here.
  • Intelligence will increase the size of the bard's mana pool. Only one song, Solon's Bewitching Bravura, requires mana to cast and thus the size of a bard's mana pool is largely inconsequential. Additional creation points should not be spent here.
  • Charisma affects lull, mesmerize, and charm abilities. However, all songs are on fixed duration (unless it breaks early), meaning duration can never increase past the song's tick-limit. Kelin's Lugubrious Lament (lull) is a fantastic pulling tool, and charm will also be frequently used by a skilled Bard. It is recommended to put at least some of your starting points in CHA.

Religion

Generally speaking being agnostic is a fairly safe bet in Everquest. Religion serves only to get you into trouble in many situations. The disadvantage to doing this is that some items and some quests can only be done by followers of certain religions. Following a religion will at worst get you killed in some areas, but generally you can avoid these. In the end it will not make an enormous difference to your character which Deity you choose..

Songs

Alternative Song List

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Level Song Name Instrument Song Description Locations Era

Skills

Combat Skills

Level Trained Skill Cap Until 50 Cap Above 50
1 No 1 Hand Blunt 200 225
1 No 1 Hand Slashing 200 225
1 No Bind Wound 100 200
1 No Defense 200+ 252
1 No Hand to Hand 100 100
1 No Offense 200 225
1 No Piercing 200 210 (250?)
1 No Throwing 113 113
10 Yes Dodge 125 155
17 Yes Dual Wield 210 210
26 Yes Intimidation 100 100
53 Yes Parry 75 75
58 Yes Riposte 75 75

Musical Skills

Level Trained Skill Cap Until 50 Cap Above 50
1 No Singing 235 235
5 Yes Percussion 235 235
8 Yes String 235 235
11 Yes Brass 235 235
14 Yes Wind 235 235
  • Although bard's music skills will increase after lv40 in the UI they are Marked as Red and capped at 200.

Casting Skills

Level Trained Skill Cap Until 50 Cap Above 50
10 Yes Meditate 1 1
  • The meditate skill for the bard has the sole purpose of allowing spells to be scribed into the spell book and memorised into song slots in a timely fashion. It does not increase bard mana regeneration.

Miscellaneous Skills

Level Trained Skill Cap Until 50 Cap Above 50
1 No Alcohol Tolerance 255 255
1 No Beg 200+ 237+
1 No Fishing 200 200
1 Yes Sense Heading 200 200
1 Yes Swimming 200 200
12 Yes Forage 55 55
17 Yes Sneak 75 75
20 Yes Sense Traps 75 75
24 Yes Safe Fall 40 40
25 Yes Hide 40 40
30 Yes Disarm Traps 100 100
35 Yes Track 100 100
40 Yes Pick Lock 100 100

Disciplines

Bard disciplines were introduced with the Velious expansion; they offer short term advantages with a long re-use: These are most useful in dragon/boss encounters.

{{#lsth:Disciplines|Bard}}

Bard Song Merchants

North Freeport

  • Lysric Loresinger - Song: Chant of Battle, Song: Chords of Dissonance, Song: Hymn of Restoration, Jaxan's Jig O' Vigor, Song: Jonathan's Whistling Warsong, Song: Lyssa's Locating Lyric, Song: Selo's Accelerando
  • Inisis Trimpet - Song: Anthem de Arms, Song: Brusco's Boastful Bellow, Song: Chant of Battle, Song: Chords of Dissonance, Song: Denon's Desperate Dirge, Song: Denon's Disruptive Discord, Song: Denon's Dissension, Song: Fufil's Curtailing Chant, Song: Jonathan's Provocation, Song: Jonathan's Whistling Warsong, Song: Largo's Melodic Binding, McVaxius Berserker Crescendo, Song: Tuyen's Chant of Flame, Song: Tuyen's Chant of Frost, Song: Verses of Victory, Song: Vilia's Verses of Celerity

Kelethin

  • Beleth Streamfoot - Song: Chords of Dissonance, Song: Hymn of Restoration, Song: Jaxan's Jig o' Vigor, Song: Jonthan's Whistling Warsong, Song: Lyssa's Locating Lyric, Song: Selo's Accelerando
  • Astar Leafsinger - Song: Cassindra's Chorus of Clarity, Song: Hymn of Restoration, Song: Purifying Rhythms, Song: Psalm of Warmth, Song: Psalm of Purity , Song: Psalm of Cooling, Song: Niv's Melody of Preservation, Song: Psalm of Mystic Shielding, Song: Elemental Rhythms, Song: Guardian Rhythms, Song: Psalm of Vitality
  • Serilia Whistlewind - Song: Angstlich's Appalling Screech, Song: Cinda's Charismatic Carillon, Song: Crission's Pixie Strike, Song: Kelin's Lucid Lullaby, Song: Kelin's Lugubrious Lament, Song: Solon's Bravura, Song: Solon's Song of the Sirens, Song: Syvelian's Anti-Magic Aria

South Qeynos

  • Topala Xenem - Song: Alenia's Disenchanting Melody, Song: Cassindra's Chorus of Clarity, Song: Elemental Rhythms, Song: Guardian Rhythms, Song: Hymn of Restoration, Song: Niv's Melody of Preservation, Song: Psalm of Cooling, Song: Psalm of Mystic Shielding, Song: Psalm of Purity, Song: Psalm of Vitality, Song: Psalm of Warmth, Song: Purifying Rhythms
  • Lysric Loresinger - Song: Chant of Battle, Song: Chords of Dissonance, Song: Hymn of Restoration, Jaxan's Jig O' Vigor, Song: Jonathan's Whistling Warsong, Song: Lyssa's Locating Lyric, Song: Selo's Accelerando
  • Chalea Volesga - Song: Anthem de Arms, Song: Brusco's Boastful Bellow, Song: Chant of Battle, Song: Chords of Dissonance, Song: Denon's Desperate Dirge, Song: Denon's Disruptive Discord, Song: Denon's Dissension, Song: Fufil's Curtailing Chant, Song: Jonathan's Provocation, Song: Jonathan's Whistling Warsong, Song: Largo's Melodic Binding, McVaxius Berserker Crescendo, Song: Tuyen's Chant of Flame, Song: Tuyen's Chant of Frost, Song: Verses of Victory, Song: Vilia's Verses of Celerity

Erudin (Library)

  • Altrusan Belstince - Song: Cassindra's Elegy, Song: Lyssa's Cataloging Libretto, Song: Lyssa's Locating Lyric, Song: Lyssa's Solidarity of Vision, Song: Lyssa's Veracious Concord, Song: Psalm of Cooling, Song: Psalm of Warmth, Song: Shauri's Sonorous Clouding, Song: Shield of Song

Highkeep

  • Justin Rhymes - Song: Agilmente's Aria of Eagles, Song: Jaxan's Jig O' Vigor, Song: Melanie's Mellifluous Motion, Song: Selo's Accelerando, Song: Selo's Chords of Cessation, Song: Selo's Consonant Chain, Song: Tarew's Aquatic Ayre

Note: Instrument information marked with an (*) was pulled from an archive of EQ Casters Realm [1]. If you can confirm (or correct) this with in game information or experience, the help would be much appreciated.


Bard-Specific Quests

{{#lsth:Class Race Quest List|Bard}}

Gearing

Class specific gear suggestions are cross listed on the Gear Reference page.

IMPORTANT - The "best" gear for a bard varies widely depending on what the bard is doing. The best drum and the best lute a bard can afford are the two single most important items a bard will ever need.

RAIDS - Almost all the time, a bard is best served in raids by wearing gear with the appropriate resists in every equipment slot possible. Bards provide HUGE resist boosts (and sometimes other songs) to their whole group, so it is crucial that the bard never be killed or feared by AE and expose his groupmates to the same. Most raid encounters require magic resist.

GROUPS - In experience groups, bards usually will be meleeing while singing 3+ different songs as needed. Different groups will need different songs (won't need haste when there is an enchanter, etc.). When doing this bards are probably best off in str, dex, hp, and ac gear. When a bard is pulling or doing CC, magic resist can be very helpful to avoid snare/root/blind/stun, and charisma can be important to helping with the success of lull.

SOLO - If a bard is AE kiting, getting hit probably means you are going to die no matter what gear you're wearing. Resist gear, especially magic resist, can help protect a bard from a death while pulling or if he accidentally picks up a caster and doesn't notice. When fear kiting, a bard again will want str, dex, hp, and AC gear (and perhaps charisma gear for lulls).

Consequently bards end up with multiple backpacks full of different gear they may need in any different situation. Tweaking which pieces of resist gear you wear in a fight where multiple resists are needed (for example, on Talendor) depends on how high your main resist (MR) can get. If you are at 400 MR at level 60 with buffs/gear/songs, you may consider swapping in great FR pieces in a few slots to bump up your FR without significantly increasing your chance of being feared.

Keep these things in mind when looking at the gear lists below, which are generally set up for a grouping or soloing bard.

Instrument Progression

Thanks to Grimmly Fireforge for first compiling this instrument progression list.

Vendor:

Entry level:

Intermediate:

High End:

Kunark High End:

Velious High End:

Armor/Weapons

Pre-Planar

{{#lsth:Players:Pre Planar Gear|Bard}}

Planar

{{#lsth:Players:Planar Gear|Bard}}

Kunark

{{#lsth:Players:Kunark Gear|Bard}}

Velious Pre-Raid/Group

{{#lsth:Players:Velious Pre-Raid Gear|Bard}}

Velious Raiding

{{#lsth:Players:Velious Raiding Gear|Bard}}

FAQ

Q: I'm level 5 and just gained the Percussion skill. Why can't I equip my drum?

A: You need to have both hands free to use an instrument, even when it's one-handed. This means that you cannot have a weapon and your drum equipped at the same time, for example.


Q: I've heard that Shauri's Sonorous Clouding eventually (at higher skill levels) acts as invisibility to undead as well. Is this true?

A: No, this is not necessarily true; however, it will work on some undead mobs, but these are few and far between. Shauri's Sonorous Clouding will never work as a reliable Invisibility to Undead.


Q: Is there a way to hot key a bards instruments so you dont have to go into the Persona screen to switch them?

A: Yes. First, get three open inventory slots (With no bags on those slots). Have your weapons equipped, and put two instruments in the empty inventory slots. Leave one of the slots empty. Now, go to a free hotkey page. An easy way to do this is by pressing shift+6, which will take you to the sixth page. Move your mouse pointer to the "Melee 1" slot in your inventory screen. Click and hold over the slot until the button pops up and is on your cursor. Drag the cursor over to the first hotkey slot in the bottom left of your screen. Position the cursor so the top left of the button is in the middle of the hotkey slot, and click your mouse once to set that slot to Melee 1. Repeat this process for Melee 2, the two instrument inventory slots, and the empty inventory slot. You will now be able to switch easily between weapons and instruments, without going to the Persona screen.


Q: Why can't I improve my brass skill with a Minotaur Horn?

A: The Minotaur Horn is actually a wind instrument.


Q: What is "Twisting" and how is it done?

A: Twisting, or Weaving, is the act of maintaining two or more song effects at one time. Here is how it is done: Start singing a song. After approximately 3 seconds, the song message will show, i.e. "Your feet move faster." At this time, immediately stop the song (DO NOT cancel the buff by clicking on the icon in your Effects pane; instead, click anywhere in the memorized spells pane or type /stopsong), and start another one. After another three seconds, you will get that spell message. Then you stop that song, and either begin song one again, or if you are quick enough, start a third song before repeating the rotation. Using this method, you can have three song effects on at all times, and with a near perfect connection, sometimes almost four songs. As you grow used to the timing, you will be able to stop your song even before the message for it pops up, and still get the effects from the song.

Macros make twisting easier. Here is a sample macro you can use to get you started.

/stopsong
/pause 29, /cast 1
/stopsong
/cast 2

However in light that if you have two macros, one for song 1 and song 2, and one macro for song 3 and song 4. If you get a fizzle, or press one macro while the other macro is running, the macros end up over-running each other and stopping songs that are currently in progress. For this reason, most bards opt for one song per macro - Especially as you get higher in levels and start crowd controlling as the number of mobs under MEZ changes, the song rotation changes. This is also true when faced with magic/fire/cold mobs followed by magic/poison/disease mobs, changing the rotation based on the spells the creatures are casting since fire/cold song does not stack with poison/disease song.

To get around missed notes, you can still make single song macros. This doesn't seem like much, but it reduces keystrokes in half since you single tap each macro, instead of double tapping spell gem shortcuts. To make this work, you should bind a key to StopSpellCasting and use it to stop all songs, or add a /stopsong macro on a hotkey:

/st
/cast X

One disadvantage over using this /stopcasting macro is that it will not allow you to stop a song until it has completed more than 75% of the casting timer. Binding a Key to StopCasting allows you to stop a song from any point on the cast bar.


Q: At what levels do my songs get better?

A: Many bard songs get more powerful as you level. Exactly how often the song gets better is dependent on that particular song. For example, Hymn of Restoration gets better every sixth level, and Brusco's Boastful Bellow gets better every other level.


Q: Some players claim that Jaxon's Jig of Vigor, the level 3 song, increases mana regeneration for casters grouped with the singing bard. Is this true?

A: No, this is not true. The song will, at times, cause it to appear that the caster is gaining additional mana, but this is actually a bug caused by a speed up in the client refresh rate.


Q: I have a very high charisma. What songs will this help with?

A: Charisma will help with the bard's charm and lull songs, specifically: Kelin's Lugubrious Lament, Solon's Song of the Sirens, and Solon's Bewitching Bravura. Charisma reduces the resist rate on lull, and reduces the chance for charm to break early. Charisma does not affect resist rates for charm or mesmerize spells.


Q: Why are the effects of Singing Steel armor the same as or worse than abilities already granted to bards when other classes get useful effects or "new abilies" from theirs?

A: Part of the reason for this is the fact that bards can cast spells while running. This means that while casting a spell from an object, there is nothing that can interrupt the bard's casting. For this reason, many potentially useful spell effects could be overpowering for a bard.


Q: I have heard rumors that the bards charming song can charm pets. Are these rumors true?

A: In a duel with a pet caster they can, but otherwise no.


Q: Does Selo's stack with J.Boots or Spirit of Wolf/Spirit of Scale?

A: Yes and no. While Selo's and another run speed buff can both be in effect at the same time, you will only get the speed benefit of the faster of the two, not both. While they are stacked, you will get the benefit of only the best (Selo's) but if Selo's ends, you will go back to SoW/jboots speed. This still makes SoW or jboots a good backup for you or your group in case you get stunned or a party member goes out of song range.


Q: Does the Hymn of Restoration cause a druid's regen spell to wear off quicker? A druid told me that the Hymn's effects stacked with his regen spell but that when the song stopped playing his regen spell was taken off as well.

A: No, Hymn of Restoration will not decrease the duration of other regeneration spells, such as Regeneration/Chloroplast/Regrowth.


Q: Looking at the Creation Guide for the Bard, I noticed that they get a lot of skills at Level 1. A lot of those skills are not available to me, particularly in the area of languages. How can I learn these?

A: You don't have all languages available to train at your guild at level 1. As you progress in levels, more languages become available to practice. But, you can also learn languages by grouping with someone with the specific language you want to learn, and has a high skill in it. If they talk enough, your skill improves. You don't have to add a practice point in a language to be able to learn it.


Q: Is it true the level 5 speed song gets faster every five levels?

A: Actually, Selo's Accelerando gets faster with every level.


Q: Where can I find a wind instrument for some of my songs?

A: You should be able to buy a Flute and/or a Minotaur Horn at any standard bard guild. Both of these will work as a wind instrument.


Q: What role do bards play in a group?

A:

  • Bards can tank using Snare/Slow song to hold aggro if they have a decent healer (Stat priority STA > AC > DEX)
  • Bards can pull using Lulls, Mezzes, Snares and Charm to split rooms (Stat priority CHA > DEX)
  • Bards can help keep groups active by twisting HP Regen, Mana Song, Haste (if no haster in group or they're bad at maintaining it) and DS to increase DPS
  • At higher levels, Bards can still tank. You will need to twist high aggro songs like snare/slow and chants and will likely need shaman slows, in addition to good tank armor, to mitigate incoming damage. (Stat priority AC > STA > AGI)

Help on multi pulls by charming extra mobs and utilizing them as extra DPS and re-charm or mez when charm breaks. (Let enchanter know you're doing this if there is a chanter grouping with you. Some get salty when you charm and they "waste" mana mezzing it...)

If you already have a tank tanking, a monk pulling and an enchanter mezzing, basically keep songs going that help the group conserve mana and increase DPS (HP Regen, Mana Regen, DS, ATK songs, Resist songs if caster mobs pulled). In a group like this where you aren't tank, puller or CC, basically you just fill in as needed. Either when one AFKs or dies or on large pulls/trains.

AE Mez has a level cap of about lv30 mobs, when you get to level 28 start using single target mez which lasts 3 times longer.

Pro bards charm annoying Mage/Necromancer/Enchanter mobs because it instantly kills their pet.

Your song setup will change as required based on your group but you'll likely always want:

HP Regen Mana Song Single Mez Charm Snare/Slow

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