[Bard] Inspire Courage


Playtest Reports


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

For what it's worth (I know it's late in the schedule)...

My party's bard lately hit the 5th level and the +2 attack AND DAMAGE moral bonus makes a big difference at that level. Since it can be kept active as long as the bard performs (and 5rds after that) on all the party (including summoned and pets) it seems to beat any other Buff available at thet level.

I had seen an other bard get it at level 8 in 3.5 but I don't remember it make that big of an impact then.

Question:

Did I miss a limit on the max. performance time (I'm o.k. with it like this, I'd use the rules for Hustling after 1 hour)?

Comment:

Still not easy to quickly comfirm the type of action that can be taken while maintaining a performance. The info. is there but a bit squatterd I.M.O.

Liberty's Edge

Slime wrote:


Still not easy to quickly comfirm the type of action that can be taken while maintaining a performance. The info. is there but a bit squatterd I.M.O.

Standard action to maintain, inspire courage lasts as long as the target can perceive the performance + 5 rounds.

And yeah, the +2 at level 5 is nice. Combined with Arcane Strike, my courage inspired bard can add +4 to hit and damage to his own weapon attacks. That's +7 to hit +4 damage (magic) before stat and size adjustments. Not too shabby IMO.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Xuttah wrote:
Slime wrote:


Still not easy to quickly comfirm the type of action that can be taken while maintaining a performance. The info. is there but a bit squatterd I.M.O.

Standard action to maintain, inspire courage lasts as long as the target can perceive the performance + 5 rounds.

...

Strange, I interpreted it the other way around.

They say "SOME bardic performance abilities require concentration,which means the bard must take a standard action eachround to maintain the ability". If it's SOME then it's not all. They also specify what cannot be done when you don't need to concentrate on a performance.

They specify the need to concentrate in Facinate and Inspire Competence but not in Inspire Courage or even Countersong (both SRD and BetaPF).

Clearly it's a Standard action to activate but I dont't think it's the same saying "as long as the bard performs" and "as long as the bard concentrate".

I may well be wrong.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

Hmm... good catch Slime! you may be unto something here... (note to self: put this on my Path Soc bard's character sheet...)


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
Hmm... good catch Slime! you may be unto something here... (note to self: put this on my Path Soc bard's character sheet...)

I kinda felt that Inspiring Courage while not being able to get into a fight yourself was odd so I read it again and again to figure it out the way I did. Check with your DM and enjoy!

Liberty's Edge

From PFRPG pg 18 under Inspire Courage: "To be affected, an ally must be able to percieve the bard’s performance. The effect lasts for as long as the ally percieves the bard‘s performance and for 5 rounds thereafter."

There does not appear to be any limit on duration, so long as the bard continues to perform, the effect goes on, plus for 5 more rounds. You are correct in stating that there is no specific action type mandated in the text, not does the description of the skill shed any further light on the problem. The SRD does not specifiy either, and I don't know if the 3.5 FAQ is reliable enough a document to get a good answer from.

That being said, it is not outrageous to assume that continuing a bardic performance to inspire courage would require concentration. You have to keep dancing, singing, acting etc. to keep the effect going, and that sounds like a standard action to me.

A little clarity in the rules would be useful though. Til then, I'd go with a standard action until I hear differently.


(long time bard player, one of my two favorite classes)

I will point out that talking is typically a free action. This would then apply to at least Perform(Oratory), Perform(Singing), and Perform(Comedy, jokes and limericks). Acrobatics can be done as part of a Move Action, so that's Perform(Dance) and Perform(Comedy, buffoonery). Instrument based forms you have the added disadvantage of using two hands, or perhaps just one. Given that disadvantage I'd say they would be no more then part of a move action.

If you are looking to limit the power of Inspire Courage do not apply a Concentration/Standard-Action to it. Instead use the rules for Perception(listen). For singing you may have to be heard over a battle. Get to far from the bard and you have trouble hearing (and get dumped to a 5 round count down.) The only other thought that occurs to me is to make it use a Swift Action, which was not around when the 3.5 bard was made. That is unlikely to conflict with other actions but still indicates the degree of effort.

Now a more important question the remains from 3.5 is what happens when an ally leaves perception range and comes back? Personally, even as a bard player, I'd say they have to wait until the bard starts a new use of Bardic Music.

Sovereign Court

Yeah it seems other than the standard action to activate it and the fact that you can't cast any spells while using the ability you can keep it up all day no concentration. This can limit you depending on your perform type, but I can see that as quite nasty when combined with perfom (comedy or oratory) since you hands are free you can attack while still performing. Nice. Now any other perform you are limited because you either need an instrument or body movement (dance and act) so attacking means you have to stop.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
lastknightleft wrote:
... Now any other perform you are limited because you either need an instrument or body movement (dance and act) so attacking means you have to stop.

I would actually allow someone to use Perform(dance) while fighting or even running. I can't count the number of Prestige-Classes, Feats, Combat styles and what-nots that actually do the same thing and the invoqued visual is just as cool.

Perform (Act) might actually work too. The bards advances and fights full of flashy moves and stances. It reminds me of a Bard class variant from 2e , can't remember the book's name right now, it has a page full of unusual instruments in it.

If someone can find a way to present the performance-type as part of a non-forbiden action (casting, scroll or wand use) I'll allow it. Actually if I see one as a DM, I'll propose it to the player, otherwise they'll just stick with Oratory and it gets boring.

All types of perform cost the same anyway and (to me) Fluff matters.

Sovereign Court

Slime wrote:
lastknightleft wrote:
... Now any other perform you are limited because you either need an instrument or body movement (dance and act) so attacking means you have to stop.

I would actually allow someone to use Perform(dance) while fighting or even running. I can't count the number of Prestige-Classes, Feats, Combat styles and what-nots that actually do the same thing and the invoqued visual is just as cool.

Perform (Act) might actually work too. The bards advances and fights full of flashy moves and stances. It reminds me of a Bard class variant from 2e , can't remember the book's name right now, it has a page full of unusual instruments in it.

If someone can find a way to present the performance-type as part of a non-forbiden action (casting, scroll or wand use) I'll allow it. Actually if I see one as a DM, I'll propose it to the player, otherwise they'll just stick with Oratory and it gets boring.

All types of perform cost the same anyway and (to me) Fluff matters.

As far as spellcasting there's a feat for that, granted it's not pathfinder core, but lyric spellcasting is out there. So I would require the feat, granted I would also allow a second perform check to attempt it anyways without the feat, but that if you failed you lost both your perform and the spell.

As for the dance/act, I'm married to a professional dancer, and I'm a former professional actor, so to me it just doesn't work, but if you feel that way go nuts (although running while dancing I just don't see)


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

***Damn post-monster***

lastknightleft wrote:
... As for the dance/act, I'm married to a professional dancer, and I'm a former professional actor, so to me it just doesn't work, but if you feel that way go nuts (although running while dancing I just don't see)

Yeah, I know what you mean, Twirling Dervishes have NOTHING to do with fighting.

I guess I can relate in another way, I'm a Mech. Engineer so a lot of stuff in the game could make me cringe (ex.: Yeilding weapons that should weight 200lbs in any efficient way).

Let me offer this: The bardic performance are Supernatural so they can't be done when magic is suspended. So magic is what makes these otherwise impossible performance possible without preping.

Out of curiosity, if I may, what type of dancing does your wife do?

Sovereign Court

Slime wrote:
lastknightleft wrote:

...

As for the dance/act, I'm married to a professional dancer, and I'm a former professional actor, so to me it just doesn't work, but if you feel that way go nuts (although running while dancing I just don't see)

Yeah, I get what you mean, I know twirling dervishes have NOTHING to do with fighting.

I think I can relate from different angle. I'm a Mech. Engineer and I really had to work on my suspension of disbelief when I see characters flinging weapons that should weight over 200lbs in any efficient way, etc.

I'll offer this: the Supernatural quality of those abilites makes them impossible when magic is supressed so it would be that component of that world that gives bards the ability to combine a performance (that normaly can't be just improvised and weaved in) to other action.

Out of curiosity, if I may, what type of dancing does your wife do?

These days she's very much focused as hip-hop dancer she has even performed in sweden for it, although she does have training in balet, jazz, etc. just about anything but clogging and tap.

And by dancer I don't mean stripper, too many people don't know that distinction but stripping =/= dancing.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
lastknightleft wrote:

...

And by dancer I don't mean stripper, too many people don't know that distinction but stripping =/= dancing.

I was kind of worried you'd think that's what I was implying when I read the post again. I respect dancers (real ones) very mutch and feel the art doesn't get the recognition of being so demanding a form.

Sovereign Court

Slime wrote:
I respect dancers (real ones) very mutch and feel the art doesn't get the recognition of being so demanding a form.

I didn't think that you did, but I've gotten so used to people doing so that I just added the caveat in case.

and by the way QFT


Hey dancing is dancing as long as it is appreciated by the audience and dancer whatever form it is in.

Beyond that most of the bardic abilities are already either supernatural or spell like in origin (inspire courage is currently (su)).


Okay, now I'm picturing a bard with perform (dance) stripping during combat to inspire courage... That's just a little complicated...


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Disciple of Sakura wrote:
Okay, now I'm picturing a bard with perform (dance) stripping during combat to inspire courage... That's just a little complicated...

Now think of Elan (OOTS) doing it!

(On a side note Art and Entertainement cross-over each other in places but are not the same although they both have there worth, IMHO.)

Silver Crusade

Slime wrote:

Perform (Act) might actually work too. The bards advances and fights full of flashy moves and stances. It reminds me of a Bard class variant from 2e , can't remember the book's name right now, it has a page full of unusual instruments in it.

The class your thinking of was the Blade - a kit from the Complete Bard's Handbook (one of the best supplemental books for 2nd edition, IMO). The kit was based on spinning and moving your weapons in intricate patterns to intimidate your opponents and grant various bonuses (morale, AC bonuses, etc.). There was a fear effect you could generate as well, if I recall correctly.

Very cool kit, and a great book if you are looking for inspiration for bard characters.

Aside: For those of you who aren't familiar with 2nd Edition, a kit was an overlay on a base class which changed many of the classes' base abilities to fit a particular theme. The closest equivalent in 3rd edition would be a series of mandatory substitution levels.

Sovereign Court

sowhereaminow wrote:

The closest equivalent in 3rd edition would be a series of mandatory substitution levels.

Actually I'd say the closest thing in third was alternate class features.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
lastknightleft wrote:
sowhereaminow wrote:

The closest equivalent in 3rd edition would be a series of mandatory substitution levels.

Actually I'd say the closest thing in third was alternate class features.

I think the current class variants (UA section of the SRD) like the Thug for fighters and Cloistered Cleric are the closest. Actualy, was the cloisered cleric a kit or an alternate class published in Dragon way back when?

Silver Crusade

Slime wrote:
lastknightleft wrote:
sowhereaminow wrote:

The closest equivalent in 3rd edition would be a series of mandatory substitution levels.

Actually I'd say the closest thing in third was alternate class features.
I think the current class variants (UA section of the SRD) like the Thug for fighters and Cloistered Cleric are the closest.

It's probably a potato versus potatoe thing. Whatever we call it, a base class gives up some abilities for new abilities following a specific theme.

Slime wrote:
Actualy, was the cloisered cleric a kit or an alternate class published in Dragon way back when?

There was a Cloistered Cleric class published waaaay back in Dragon magazine for first edition. I believe it popped up in the Best of Dragon volume 4 or 5 as well.

As far as a kit, I can't recall one. But then again, the Complete Cleric's Handbook didn't stick with me as much as the Bard one did.


When using a "visual" kind of performance instead of an "acoustic" one to inspire courage, I imagine it could become an issue to always track Line of Sight between all party members and the bard?


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
sowhereaminow wrote:
...It's probably a potato versus potatoe thing...

But I like potatoes! ;)

(Damn! Now I feel like getting a poutine!)


Slime wrote:
sowhereaminow wrote:
...It's probably a potato versus potatoe thing...

But I like potatoes! ;)

(Damn! Now I feel like getting a poutine!)

Seldom do we hear of poutine on this board... That being said, promise of a poutine DOES inspire courage if I may say!


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Laurefindel wrote:
...Seldom do we hear of poutine on this board... That being said, promise of a poutine DOES inspire courage if I may say!

Maybe we need a Perform (Cooking) for the gourmet bard!

Let's see: Could work for Fascinate (hmmm doughnuts …), Distraction (Want a cookie?), Inspire Courage (FOR THE POUTINE!), Inspire competence (You hava to eat you’ra so skinny, manja, manja!), Discordant performance (Is that MAYO on the fries !?!**&?).

Yep, that could work.

Liberty's Edge

Laurefindel wrote:


Seldom do we hear of poutine on this board... That being said, promise of a poutine DOES inspire courage if I may say!

Scooby snacks of inspire courage anyone? :)

Silver Crusade

Xuttah wrote:
Laurefindel wrote:


Seldom do we hear of poutine on this board... That being said, promise of a poutine DOES inspire courage if I may say!
Scooby snacks of inspire courage anyone? :)

Does that mean canned spinach would be for Inspire Heroics? :)


Xuttah wrote:
Slime wrote:


Still not easy to quickly comfirm the type of action that can be taken while maintaining a performance. The info. is there but a bit squatterd I.M.O.

Standard action to maintain, inspire courage lasts as long as the target can perceive the performance + 5 rounds.

And yeah, the +2 at level 5 is nice. Combined with Arcane Strike, my courage inspired bard can add +4 to hit and damage to his own weapon attacks. That's +7 to hit +4 damage (magic) before stat and size adjustments. Not too shabby IMO.

Seems like it's been well hashed out, but as Slime noted, with careful reading it's plain that most Bardic Performances do not take a standard action to maintain. Most actually simply take a free action, as indicated in the text mentioning what a Bard can do while maintaining their performance. No change on this since 3.5 (in 3.0 it was a free action to *start*, it just took a round to take affect - this may be why the language is muddled).

Also, if I'm not mistaken Arcane Strike adds only to damage, not to attack, but it is great for bards, no question.


Dorje Sylas wrote:

I will point out that talking is typically a free action. This would then apply to at least Perform(Oratory), Perform(Singing), and Perform(Comedy, jokes and limericks).

Yes sure talking is a free action. But perfom is not just talking. Actually its a skill or a more complicated action (in case that its not a skill anymore in PFbeta... i dont remember). So it should be a standar action. You use an ability (like inspire courage) that uses your ranks in perform.

Actually it should be more because into the battle you dont "perform". Simple performing in an inn should be several minutes.

Liberty's Edge

Majuba wrote:
Also, if I'm not mistaken Arcane Strike adds only to damage, not to attack, but it is great for bards, no question.

You appear to be correct, sir! My mistake. I shall amend my use of the feat from this point on. Now it makes more sense for it to be an untyped bonus and thus stackable with enhancement bonuses.


Gyftomancer wrote:

Yes sure talking is a free action. But perfom is not just talking. Actually its a skill or a more complicated action (in case that its not a skill anymore in PFbeta... i dont remember). So it should be a standar action. You use an ability (like inspire courage) that uses your ranks in perform.

Actually it should be more because into the battle you dont "perform". Simple performing in an inn should be several minutes.

Perform is still a skill and is very unlikely to be changed in the final book.

Last point first. Let's not confuse the artistic performance aspect of the Perform skill with what happens at combat time scale. That aspect of the skill is already marked in a gp per day time and has basically no significance to combat. To give an example, it is the difference between overland movement and the move action in combat. In combat you got (typically) 30 feet in 6 seconds with a move action. Overland Movement or a Performances is the result of many rounds of actions, move or free.

As to the kind of action a peform skill is in round, we can debate. In the Vocal category it would be no more then a Standard action. Sining, joke telling, or telling story does not prevent movement. Making vocal performances a Full-Round action (the only action 'more') would conflict with reality. Military marching and the musical (singing and dancing) would be impossible. While complex and requiring training to actually sound nice, most 'sining' can be done along side other actions. Whistling and humming are some of the more common examples vocal performance activities done while doing any number of other tasks that can be described as needing a standard action.

This is why I suggested that *if* you wanted to make the vocal perform skills more effort then a free action, you use the Swift Action.

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