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Why can't a Bard not use Inspire Competence on himself?


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

Liberty's Edge

I'm in a PF where I just levelled up to third level and while reading the description of Inspire Cmpetence it say a Bard cannot use it on himself. Helping other characters chances to use their skills yet not your own. Makes no sense at all and seems to me at least as a heavy handed attempt at game balance. I work in customer service I have improved new employees abilites with their own customer service skills. I'm also using my knowledge to improve my own. Even game balance imo seems like a poor excuse as I'm giving for the moment a +2 to skill checks to other members in the group at least 13 times. If I were to use all my bardic performances to improve skills in one sitting. How does that not break game balance. Seriously. They give a class the ability to improve other party members skills yet not their own. Yet they allow the same class to inspire courage and allow the bard to use that ability also I can see why some fans give the Paizo dev such a hard tiem. For the most part they have a solid ruleset yet sometimes they either include rules or alter rules that make you go WTH sometimes.

Dedicated Voter 2014

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Because a bard knows deep down what a flawed, pathetic person s/he really is and cannot break through the associated ennui enough to inspire themselves to do anything to improve their own situation. :-) Truly emo bards must make a Will save DC 10+(2x their own level) at the start of each adventure just to have the will to go out of the house.

But seriously, performers do things to affect others- not themselves... I highly doubt a musician, actor, or artist derives the same pleasure/effect from their work that an observer does. The rule makes sense to me.

Liberty's Edge

I would have prefered an actual in game reason then just bards can't use that ability. Hell Whiskey Jack your reason even if I may not agree with it would have been a bnetter explanation imo. Even then I see no reasonable explanation why a Bard cannot help himself use his own abilities to improve his skills. While I'm not singing when I'm training someone or learning something new I'm still for the most part improveing myself. Maybe the Devs thought that at highler levels it would make the Bard too overpowered in terms of beating skills DCs. Then again they are helping other memebrs of the group to beat skill DCs. Just seems a werid nerf imo.

Marathon Voter 2013

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Probably balance concerns, and not wanting them to absolutely destroy the other skill monkeys at such a low level.

Liberty's Edge

Cheapy wrote:
Probably balance concerns, and not wanting them to absolutely destroy the other skill monkeys at such a low level.

True yet imo they are doing it anyway because they can still boost other memebers skills to beat DCs. With my decent charisma stat and extra performance feat I can boost my parties memebrs skills 13 times a day fi that is all I do with my bardic performance. That's enough imo to thrash other skill monkies at lower levels anyway.


An Eidolon w/ the Skilled evolution on important skills destroys skill monkeys at such a low level anyway. I'd actually prefer it if the class achieving the high skill checks was one of the classes intended to be a skill monkey...

Dedicated Voter 2014

I guess my approach is concerned with finding real-world reasons for how Bardic Performance might work rather than think about it from a mechanic/game-balance issue. Disposition-based theories in psychology in regard to media enjoyment depends upon a kind of suspension of belief- which you can't really have if you are the one performing. (Unless you are truly delusional... which I suppose *could* happen... thinking of the recent "Black Swan" movie.)


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Because your attention is on the boosting performance, not on the skill in question.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Grey Lensman wrote:
Because your attention is on the boosting performance, not on the skill in question.

I'd go with this, it makes sense.

Liberty's Edge

Grey Lensman wrote:
Because your attention is on the boosting performance, not on the skill in question.

A good point yet I'm assimung your doing the same with Inspire Courage which the bard is allowed to benefit from. One can also say they are boosting the groups morale not their ability to do better damage or hit better. It just that I suppose I don't see anything game breaking in allowing a bard to benefit from a +2 skill bonus. Everyone else can so why not the person using the ability. I guess I can houserule it in my next game if it includes a Bard.

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