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Aasimar Bard Favored Class Bonus


Rules Questions

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Looking at making an aasimar bard for an upcoming campaign and was looking at the Favored Class Bonus:

RULE: Choose one Bardic Performance; treat the Bard as 1/2 level higher when determining the effects of that performance.

So if I were to choose Inspire Courage, and raise it by 1/2 point per level (rounding down) does that mean that at 4th level (considered 6th level for the performance) the bonus would increase from +1 to +2? Then gain a +3 at 8th level (considered 12th level for the performance), and max out at +4 at 12th level (considered 18th for the performance)?


Yes. It is unfortunate that there is a maximum listed--kind of makes me question the usefulness of that Favored Class bonus outside of games that will end pre-16th. You might be better off in the long run choosing a different performance that doesn't have a cap.

Oh, and it would max at 11th, after only having spent 10 levels on the bonus, since 11+5=16.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Well most of the Adventure Paths run to roughly 15th level, so I figured the max wouldn't really hurt. But Inspire Courage max's out at +4 at level 17 so I would have to go to 12th.


Actually, the ability grants a ton of usefulness even in games past level 12. The simple reason is that it makes going into a PrC or just plain multiclassing more attractive. While there are many PrCs that advance spell casting, very few advance bardic performance. That's usually a balancing factor that needs to be considered. However, if the best performance is already maxed out, it almost becomes a non issue.

Arcane Trickster, Battle Herald, Dragon Disciple, Harrower, Loremaster, Storm Kindler, Veiled Illusionist all become more attractive for the bard.


Merkatz wrote:

Actually, the ability grants a ton of usefulness even in games past level 12. The simple reason is that it makes going into a PrC or just plain multiclassing more attractive. While there are many PrCs that advance spell casting, very few advance bardic performance. That's usually a balancing factor that needs to be considered. However, if the best performance is already maxed out, it almost becomes a non issue.

Arcane Trickster, Battle Herald, Dragon Disciple, Harrower, Loremaster, Storm Kindler, Veiled Illusionist all become more attractive for the bard.

Battle Herald actually does increases bardic performance (at least inspire courage) so this fc bonus doesn't benefit Battle Herald as much.


mplindustries wrote:
You might be better off in the long run choosing a different performance that doesn't have a cap.

Now I'm suddenly imagining an Aasimar Bard, running the entire level range from 1 to 20, putting every single one of their favored class bonuses the entire time into Deadly Performance. Completely useless for the entire progression... only to have it all hit at once like a wrecking ball when they finally get that capstone level.

It'd be a pretty wonky way to run a character, for sure, and not even close to optimal, but there's just something about the sheer, patient min-maxiness of it...

Qadira

above 10th/11th/12th you could just switch the benefit to another performance to raise the level of that a little bit, Inspire Greatness in more allies, maybe use Suggestion at a higher DC. or just take the extra hit points/skill points.

Qadira

btw. it doesn't change the bard level for activating the performance at all does it ?
by 5th level your inspire courage would be as that of a 7th level bard, usually a move action to activate. but you wouldn't get that since you're 5th level, right?

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

It says "determining the effects". The cost to activate doesn't strike me as part of the "effect".

Btw, I can't help thinking about the Dawnflower Dervish (not Dervish Dancer!) bard archetype with this...

Qadira

i was thinking the one from the Varisia book, the storm caller or whatever. or worse the wyrd words bard =X


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
mplindustries wrote:

Yes. It is unfortunate that there is a maximum listed--kind of makes me question the usefulness of that Favored Class bonus outside of games that will end pre-16th. You might be better off in the long run choosing a different performance that doesn't have a cap.

Oh, and it would max at 11th, after only having spent 10 levels on the bonus, since 11+5=16.

Well, games that will end pre-16th is....just about all of them :)


Cheapy wrote:
Well, games that will end pre-16th is....just about all of them :)

RPGs for me are like 75% theorycrafting. It's hard to remember that. When I run games, though, I do make sure they go the distance--usually by leveling everyone extremely fast.

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