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  1. #1
    Community Member thunir's Avatar
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    Default My concern with Bards

    I was bringing my Bard concerns up in guild this morning.

    I feel pigeonholed into being a maxed out buffer. It’s become the only reason to carry a bard.

    If you want CC there are much better options than a Spell Singer. Not only for CC but ever other castor class will also have insta kills.

    The DPS and DPS boost a warchanter provides is hardly felt. They are never requested. I used to get cheers when I would show up to a party with my warchanter. Now no one cares about the DPS boost, and again all the CC you have built into the warchanter line via the frozen enhancements pales in comparison to real CC.

    I have some suggestions, but I wanted to know if anyone else sees it the same way I do.

  2. #2
    Community Member thunir's Avatar
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    Spellsinger suggestion's

    Pull the breaks off the dice calculations and the Spell Power available to Bards. I used to think the conventional wisdom to Force and Sonic are given lower calculations because they had very few resistances, now elemental nukers get Elemental Apotheosis so they now get the more powerful spell bank, and better SLA's with no draw backs. I think a re-calculation for Sonic spells in order at the very least. Greater access to sonic spell power also.

    Spell singers need a melee enhancement line: my suggestion would be 2WF and pattern them off of a Bladesinger. In fact I like that. A Bladesinger/ Wizard approach could open up greater access to Higher level spells.

    In fact thematically Spell singer should be 2wf, Warchanter Sword and Board or THWF, and Swash is SWF.

    Spell singer should also have an enhancement to good ole' Fascinate so it is effective in reaper with the proper placement, perhaps it could happen with Bard LVL just likie the song times so by proxy the Spell singer is more adept already?


    Warchanter: TBA
    Last edited by thunir; 06-25-2019 at 08:01 AM.

  3. #3
    Community Member IlmerSilverhilt's Avatar
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    I feel bards are in a pretty good place atm. But that said I like to buff, and I feel the CC/Heals are still good enough to earn a spot in groups and raids. I run my racial lives as 16Bard/4Fighter warchanter freeze, but for epics and raiding I like the utility of spellsinger and am atm having fun with a test of my endgame build (link in bio if interested to see)

    Cant wait to hear your concerns, maybe its something I havent thought about

    Mes
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  4. #4
    Community Member Ralmeth's Avatar
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    I'm not an uber power gamer, but my Swash/Vistani Bard build is pretty awesome. It has decent DPS and totally feels like playing a Swiss army knife, in that you always have a tool for the occasion. Now, as for playing as a Warchanter, I've tried that and I don't like it as much because as much as the buffs for other people are nice, you don't really need them. If you combine that with the fact that it takes forever to sing everyone their own special song, that holds everyone up.
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  5. #5
    Community Member thunir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IlmerSilverhilt View Post
    I feel bards are in a pretty good place atm. But that said I like to buff, and I feel the CC/Heals are still good enough to earn a spot in groups and raids. I run my racial lives as 16Bard/4Fighter warchanter freeze, but for epics and raiding I like the utility of spellsinger and am atm having fun with a test of my endgame build (link in bio if interested to see)

    Cant wait to hear your concerns, maybe its something I havent thought about

    Mes
    I'm glad you said something, because I have checked out your posted build. It is a prime example of my point. You have maxed out almost everything you can as a Spellsinger, still dont hold a candle to any real well built Arcane/ Divine DC caster . Spellsingers are inferior in every aspect when held side by side to an arcane/ divine. They cant nuke, SLA's are weak compared to any other Arcane/ Divine class and you don't take Master of Music so I wouldn't expect you to try. Reverberate is horrible compared to any other Arcane/ Divine DOT's. You are limited in spell selection ergo not as versatile as any other Arcane/ Divine, and for DC purposes only cast at lvl 6. Divine is a much better healer, and to top it all off what used to be the primary CC of a Bard "Fascinate" is now worthless in Reaper. IMHO there is literally no reason to carry a spell singer other than the buffs provided, they've been out moded in virtually every other role.

    Same With Warchanter I could go on and on.

    THE ONLY REASON TO CARRY BARD NOW IS FOR THE BUFFS, and in your posted build you didn't even go heavy into Warchanter. I did a 32/ 31 split that maxed out everything important taking only one tier 5, Spell song Vigor and the Guild loved it. I hated it.

    Jack of all trades and master of none. We need one good trade, and buffs arnt enough to get people to cry "Yeaaaa, theres a Bard in the party"
    Last edited by thunir; 06-24-2019 at 08:59 PM.

  6. #6
    Community Member IlmerSilverhilt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thunir View Post
    THE ONLY REASON TO CARRY BARD NOW IS FOR THE BUFFS, and in your posted build you didn't even go heavy into Warchanter. I did a 32/ 31 split that maxed out everything important taking only one tier 5, Spell song Vigor and the Guild loved it. I hated it.

    Jack of all trades and master of none. We need one good trade, and buffs arnt enough to get people to cry "Yeaaaa, theres a Bard in the party"
    I can actually agree with most of your points, thunir now that you write it so (not just the quoted part)... But maybe you underestimate the value of a bard, I mean your guild loved you! And I often get YAYs when I join groups, but you are right nobody notices the buffs lately. I run For Cormyr! buff for boss beatdowns and its roughly 50 to-hit/dmg, you would think ppl would feel it, but I havent heard any comments on a new crit or stuff like that yet (did in the past with just Heroic Companion +5 dmg :P). I actually go ok deep into Warchanter, 26 points, and the reason Im not taking T5 WC is I value T5 SS higher (mass hold). When Im done with racials Ill have a few more AP to spend, but will probably use for runspeed in Swash, so that wont help my buffs or my (non-existant) dmg. Maybe Ill take Heroic Companion again and live with a bit slow movement 8)

    I like your idea to do something about their sonic dmg, but cant agree to a TWF dmg line. Maybe thats just me...

    Thats all I can think of right now, Mes
    Ilmer Silverhilt, 36pt Elf Fighter12/Monk6/Paladin2. The Kighter
    Mesmerita d'Jorasco, 36pt PDK Bard20. Can't talk, TR'ing!
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  7. #7
    Community Member Bjond's Avatar
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    I measured the DPS on my Shouter and compared it to my Inquisitive. Similar levels, similar gear. Shouter L24 in Esoteric & Adherent. Inquisitive L21 in Silent & Adherent. Neither one in a good ED (still leveling those). Neither one with nice twists. The shouter took roughly 5x longer to kill the boss in R1 Impossible Demands and it used nearly all it's SP doing it. The inquisitive used one action boost, one KtA, and a few SP to heal.

    That's a HUGE difference in both resources required and DPS delivered. Most MMOs consider a 10% difference to be outrageous. This is a 500% difference and the bad one was higher level. Even if you assume I screwed the build and the gear, you can't make up more than say 200% of that with fixes in those areas (I suspect I'm missing maybe 20% of what it could do).

    That's only for epic levels, though. In heroics, the same spellsinger two-shots entire herds as it dashes through quests: soundburst/stun + shout|horn = dead herd. I've heard people say over and over that "blaster builds" either fail or are MUCH worse in epics than in heroics. I can't imagine a better example of that than a shouter bard.

    I literally can't wait until it's L30 so I can put that double-barreled TR to it's head and paint the wall.


    The argument against making bards stronger is that they bring so much to the group via their songs. Unfortunately, none of these things fall into the necessary category. Bards have lots of nice but little necessary. Nice doesn't lift a group, it just smooths a few bumps. This is why I think those arguments fail and that for balance, it needs to either put out similar DPS or similar CC, both of which are necessary.

    Fixes: rework some of the pointless AP in spellsinger to be useful and desirable, eg.:
    T5:capering (now unused & pointless) becomes "adds fascinated = helpless"
    T3:enthrallment (now unused & pointless) becomes fascinate upgrades to "chance of break"
    T4:frollic (useful, but only nice) .. move to T2, replace Willful
    T4:frenetic (new) .. haste is part of inspire (very nice, but still not necessary)
    T5:replace advanced (unused/pointless) with displacement is part of inspire (even more very nice)
    T5:Horn CD = 6s, SP/2, AP=1per (scream all you want, you still can't DPS)

    The fascinate changes are likely enough in the "necessary" category, since it can boost DPS of both Bard and Party; reliable helpless is a very strong feature that every group wants -- even it it broke at about the same rate as current enthrall. The other changes fall under the "all kinds of nice" category, though, since they don't grant either the bard or others anything they don't already have -- just make it easier to maintain & keep up. All this in SS plays Hob with builds, but in a good way -- it's not a bad thing to have too many nice things to choose from to get them all.

    I wouldn't stop there, though: class feature of CHA to hit AND CHA to dmg; eg. @ L6 & L12. Not for some weapons. For ALL. This opens up all kinds of variant builds and helps the SP efficiency issue for shouters by letting them swing at things. It helps make non-PDK Icers viable, too (I like thin bards!). Change shouter spells from +X every 2 or 3 levels to +X every level. Change Epic Power to "+1 Caster Level & Max Caster Level" (prolly good/ok for every caster). Reduce DPS spell/sla SP costs by 50%. Reduce CD, SP, and AP costs for Horn & Hold. Do all that and well, shouter is still dead for DPS. That probably only punched it up by 200%, which isn't halfway there, but fascinate=breakable helpless @ SS:T5 would cover the rest in people's minds.

    Yeah, I gave a gold kitchen sink to bard there, but after playing Inquisitive, it's justified. Inquisitive is Shuricannon level DPS, but at every level, not just 29+ .. and it has NIH built-in. It's unbelievably good DPS. Before playing it and learning that's how good the devs want all DPS to be (they do want balance, right?), I'd have been a bit more conservative in suggestions.

  8. #8
    Community Member Yokido's Avatar
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    @OP

    Weighing in from a (my favorite & current build)14 brd/6 clr perspective...

    I think WC is pretty good for my purposes.

    Base abilities: For these I go up to "Fighting Spirit", mainly because I -really- love the temp hp it gives (every few seconds) to yourself and allies, and that it's x2 your Cha mod in epics (mine is +96 normally). I also like the other base abilities, notably the Skaldic Rage, which helps me with a stacking boost to str.

    Enhancements I take:
    I take enchant weapon because there's rarely any Artificers who use this, and I like being a buff-bot galore. I take Rough & Ready because +6 PRR/AC, dude that's awesome for surviveyness. Inspired bravery / Poetic Edda are amazing for the +attack, which bards tend to have a lot of problems with. Then I go high spirits for exhaust immunity, and iron skin because free PRR (that's shared with everyone too!). My main meat & potatoes is Armorer so I can wear medium armor, and then recklessness so I can say I help with dps (lol).


    I'll give some critique to WC for your sake (and the sake of argument):

    Northwind stinks because it's just on vorpal and does nothing for bosses, and it's just frozen. I wish it had something more to it, like ice damage that scales from spell-power, or a stack that increases ice damage received.

    They improved obstinance to have +pos spell power, but I can see why a melee wouldn't want it. Maybe they should make this a "choose one or the other", so it could have a small boost to melee power instead of pos healing if people chose? High spirits has this same issue, it's offering positive energy in a line that's about beating faces.

    The T5 movement effects aren't really valuable, and I've never seen either anyone use them, nor have I ever thought to myself "Boy I wish my entire party was 15% faster right now with +1 to saves!" Maybe useful to some people who like these effects, but I've never seen the need. Who knows, maybe someone likes them. I'd prefer something more along the lines of a perpetual small boost to everyone in the party, like say 5-10%, and make it stacking with a small goody like +1 to saves etc.

    Kingly recovery is alright, but I don't like how it's just a white wash of divine sovereignty. I wish it gave something unique. Instead of doing charges it should be 10 min CD. I also think it should give new effects by increasing the tier. Example of something I'd like to see: T1 Kingly recovery / T2 +your target's HP can't go under 1 from damage for 30 seconds after / T3 +your target's HP can't go under 1 from damage for 60 seconds after.

    Spinning ice seems fair & solid (hehe), so I wouldn't ask it to be changed much. But maybe get some ice damage, and maybe a + to attack bonus since bards suffer hard for having a low attack.

    Howl of the North seems more like a T4, but since WC gets so many T5s, maybe this is fair.

    Chant of power is fair for a T5.

    In closing:

    I hope you like my input. I tried to be fair, and I tried to give valuable pieces from my perspective.

  9. #9
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    I would like spellsinger viable as a sonic blaster in epics
    I would like spellsinger viable as excellent universal CC
    I don't want to melee as a spellsinger. Bards have two other trees that help with melee.
    (Instead, I would like to see a bit more defense in Warchanter that would be useful for caster bards.)

    For this, bards should get a couple new spells (level 5 spell choice is particularly weak for bards):
    * Level one sonic bolt, similar to what sorwiz got.
    * One mid-high level solid single target damage spell (something between scorching ray and polar ray or up to Thunderstrike). Or have lvl 18 spellsinger core add Thunderstrike as a lvl 6 spell.
    * One universal CC that works against undead and constructs.

    Alternatively, spellsinger could get an ability in high cores (or fatesinger twist) to affect undead/constructs with enchantment spells.

    Also, rework existing sonic spells to deal more damage / scale better. Or add extra damage to them via spellsinger lvl12-20 cores. Also capstone should bump up Horn of Thunder damage to Acid Well/Meteor Swarm level.

    Another fun ability would to be to work on dazing. What if there was an enhancement/twist that would make the daze last longer. Or lingering daze. Or daze affects undead/constructs. Or debuffing daze, leaving enemies slowed. Or stunning daze, granting a no-save helpless for 1 second (per spellsinger core above level 12?).

    Generally debuffs would be fun. Sonic spells could reduce prr/mrr/fort. These effects are hot these days.

  10. #10
    Community Member Kutalp's Avatar
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    My humble opinion about how to bring bards a better place when the game mechanics are considered ( most of the time fight then speak then fight double time to end the quest speak to the npc the end of the quests. The number of quests that are out of this mechanics are fewer than the ones that follow the routine... );

    Soundburst spell shall have stronger versions that has longer stun or extra slow and curse effects. The damage should scale better with stronger and new soundburst spells. Cone shaped spells and targeting doesnt work and scale fair en?ough.

    Inquisitive skill-combat related enhancements are an improvement to the game mechanics. Bards shall get similar enhancements. (aswell the rogues)

    Bards should have music instruments of choice. Using these instrument shall add 1-3 seconds hold with charisma and bard level aswell as boosting social skills. Empower spell penetration effects for spell such as sleep, sorrow, or cause madness at a random enemy to turn aggressive against its companions. Each type of instrument may empower positive or negative effect on the party or the opposing npc team.

    I believe these are all more important upgrades for bards then giving them better physical attributes or/weapon specialist effects. ( I also believe cost of perform, heal and spellcraft shall be readjusted or at least can be added as bonus points to enhancement trees ; to let type of casters to alternate their builds. All types of caster shall be able to play around with these skills to create unique builds. Palemaster Heal. Archmage Perform. Bard Heal. Cleric perform. This would be small gest to players and to let them play around their builds )


  11. #11
    Community Member Yokido's Avatar
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    As far as SS goes, it's definitely where it should be IMO. Bards aren't known for being a master of dealing spell damage, or even spell CC. They're known for their musical CC, and they're known for being a master at being a little bit good at everything.

  12. #12
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    I think warchanter AoE helpless + swashbuckler En Pointe (gaurdbreaking buckler) + PDK CKT + 1 FvS (Divine Presence) combos off pretty well at cap, since it can fill in between dire charges.

    So 29-30 they are pretty solid, as long as they built to combo and have appropriate gear.
    Last edited by Tilomere; 07-03-2019 at 05:01 PM.

  13. #13
    Community Member Kutalp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tilomere View Post
    I think warchanter AoE helpless + swashbuckler En Pointe (gaurdbreaking buckler) + PDK CKT + 1 FvS (Divine Presence) combos off pretty well at cap, since it can fill in between dire charges.

    So 29-30 they are pretty solid, as long as they built to combo and have appropriate gear.

    I agree.

    I also believe it would be much more fun for Bard players if there could be flexible in built class specialities but also 'viable' alternatives to Coup de grace builds or Dire charge builds...which use actual Bardic/Musical/Lore based abilites.

    Same issue for Palemaster (Solid) vs Archmage (PM or bust) or Archmage without non caster/non heroic Epic Shiradi and non wizard fvs missile spammer cookie cutter builds.

    Arcane Casters should not have to be half time warriors or preachers to be viable soloists or team players.




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