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Best Bard Spells


Scarab Sages

I've looked over Treantmonk's guide but I wanted to get some other feedback from people who are playing or have played a bard. What first level spells did you choose and were you happy with your choices? I'm torn as to what to take for my spells.

I like Vanish from the APG, 1 round invisibility, a 1st level spell!

Maybe better for those ranged/rogue bards, but I still like it!

Sovereign Court

Cure Light Wounds is a nice steady option for your whole career, although its usefulness scales depending on party makeup.

Hideous Laughter is a great spell, and you get early access as a Bard.

Thematically, Ventriloguism is one of my favourites for social situations and providing a distraction or sowing dissent/confusion.

Grease is one of the best 1st lvl spells. Gets you out of grapple and causes opponents to be flat footed.

Expeditious Retreats is always a good option.

Disguise Self is a great standby

Silent Image is amasing, but GM dependant.

Liberty's Edge

Is the campaign you're going to be playing in using just Pathfinder stuff, or are they also using 3.5 stuff?

Regardless, I would definitely concur with Hideous Laughter as a choice. Whether you want CLW or Vanish would depend on how much other healing is available in the party, and what you'd like your role to be.

Also, you're going to be getting additional 1st level spells known at 2nd and 3rd level.

Myself, I'd go with Hideous Laughter and Vanish at 1st level. By 3rd level, I'd also have Grease and Silent Image.

As for CLW, I'd invest in a wand when I could afford it.

Liberty's Edge

pretty much that, yeah.

Cure Light Wounds is always handy to know in a pinch. Grease and Hideous Laughter are excellent shutdown spells.

Beyond that, there's ventiloquism, silent image, and a fair number from the APG. The thing to remember is that 1st level Bard spells are about creating advantages or removing penalties; they don't get the buff spells until later. But then, that's what Bardic Music is for.

Scarab Sages

As far as I know, we're only using Pathfinder stuff. I'm primarily an archer bard because we have a ton of melee.

Moriarty wrote:
As far as I know, we're only using Pathfinder stuff. I'm primarily an archer bard because we have a ton of melee.

+1 vanish

Are you considering a dip into rogue?

Check out some of the ones that use only an immediate action or a swift action, such as gallant inspiration.

Jester's Jaunt is also an immensely powerful spell if you can set it up right with your allies.

Scarab Sages

KenderKin wrote:
Are you considering a dip into rogue?

It's not part of my current plan because we already have a rogue and I'm the primary arcane caster (the other is a summoner) so I don't want to lose a level towards my spellcasting.

Dark Archive

Are you using the Golarion deities for your campaign? If so, do you have access to use Gods and Magic? In Gods and Magic, being a follower of Shelyn will give you access to Eagle's Splendor at 1st level. Being able to grant yourself and others a +4 CHA at 1st level is cool. Being able to scribe scrolls that do this for only 12.5 gp is awesome!

I'm curently playing a level 5 bard. My other players have started calling him the Barninja. I'm working on seting my self up as a information broker and fence. Thats just the cover for working on helping the bellflower net work in Cheliax.

If you are using the complet spell compendum. Insperationla Boost : +1 to all bardic preformance bounes.

Cure Light Wounds : you can never have to much healing.

Disquise Self : Very usefull out of combat spell. Insta disquise as you need.

Chastise : from the Cheliax pathfinder faction guide. Very usefull out of combat spell.

Touch of Gracelessness : from the advanced players guide. Not so good for a primary range attacker.

2nd level

Blur : 20% miss chance after thay hit you is never a bad thing.

Invisibility : Becous not every one can stealth like the Barninja.

Versatile Weapon : What good is it to know the way to buy pass DR? If you can't do it right then. Bardic Knowlage + Versatile Weapon = no DR.

3rd level

Haste : It's haste need I say more.

Aura of the Unremarkable : It's just that good. Cheliax pathfinder companion is wher you find it.

spell advice here is pretty solid, I ran a bard through the entire rise of the runelords, but I had 3.5 spell list at my fingertips. All I am going to advise is Arcane Duelist Variant Bard from APG into Arcane Archer prestige class. Very nice combo.

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Animate rope can be surprisingly useful actually - essentially no way to prevent it and causes -4 to ranged attacks, -2 melee, -2 AC, -2 reflex saves.

Expeditious retreat lets a ranged attacker move back 60' and still shoot in a round - keeps you *well* away from melee attackers and charges. Unfortunately, unless you're an elf, 60' is the range of a short bow, so you'll probably get penalties.

Later on, 7th level and good hope, with move-action inspire you'll add +4 atk/dmg to your melee'ers (and +2 saves, +4 vs. charm/fear).

Grand Lodge

Any thoughts on how Ultimate Magic has changed the game here?

-Allegro- (2nd level) seems very nice: gain haste while maintaining bardic performance!

-Unnatural lust- (1st level) is ... well ... read for yourself: target is compelled to kiss or caress another.

-Exquisite accompaniment- seems quite handy: instrument maintains bardic performance for you.

Actually if you're the primary spellcaster and you're getting solid party buffs via the summoner I'd consider a magician bard. Some of the later abilities (add cha modifier to wand DCs and pulling from all arcane spells for some bonus spells) are pretty amazing.

In a social game glibness is AMAZING. +35 to the bluff check before a dice roll. And it lasts over an hour by the time you have it.

Gallant inspiration is a very nice way to help that crit confirmation land, etc.

Heroism is always a great choice, particularly if you go for the magician option.

Share language is a nice early-game alternative to tongues. At least keep a scroll of this handy.

Blood Biography can be a useful situational spell. Again perhaps better as a scroll. Being able to ID anyone with a blood sample is pretty alright.

Shatter is a nice alternative to have handy when the rogue can't open a lock.

I concentrated on group buffs and disabling spells. Good Fortune when you get it is really good if you have a melee heavy group. Glitterdust, Grease, Hideous Laughter, Haste, Blur, Heroism, Silence.

Out of combat utility is very nice too. Glibness, Invisibility, Silent Image, Modify Memory.

Good Hope, Timely Inspiration, Gallant Inspiration, Vanish, Haste, and D.Door all hit my list of "almost always take" -- crushing dispair, pyrotechnics, glitterdust, and see invisibility are on that list too.

I've been wanting to try out Solid Note. Free mini-immovable-rods!

Darigaaz the Igniter wrote:
I've been wanting to try out Solid Note. Free mini-immovable-rods!

Oh so that's the use of it!

1 person marked this as a favorite.

i played a arcane duelist bard during king maker (level 1~18ish) found it be my favorite class. i was melee based and with the low spell levels i find that i cant really recommend any debuff spells but spells i did use a lot were...

level 0
basic ones like detect magic and read magic. a light spell (light or dancing light) and mage hand

level 1
saving finale
timely inspiration
feather fall

level 2
glitter dust
gallant inspiration

level 3
good hope
see invisibility
jesters jaunt

level 4
dimension door
invisibility greater
freedom of movement

level 5
dispel magic greater
bard's escape
deafening song bolt (use with rod of maximize if you ever get one)

level 6
euphoric tranquility(won the game)

and yeah i realized you only asked for level 1 spells but by the time i realized this i already wrote the level 3 ones down and i figured i might as well finish :P

BM623O wrote:
i played a arcane duelist bard

Sorry for the bad OT, may I ask you which feats did you choose?


Personally i think people seriously overlook the Feather Step spell 10 mins per level of ignoring difficult terrain could be priceless in the right places. (Like almost every ap at low levels.) Throw it at the party barbarian and he'll love you same for an archer or caster.

If you're playing the sort of game that everyone is flying by level 6 you can then retrain it.

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