Skald Discussion


Class Discussion

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I am still don't see what the big deal would be if the Skald got his rage, but his allies got inspire courage... I mean what is that breaking?

All it means is that the Skald can actually help out barbarians and spellcasters and rangers and inquisitors and hunters and warpriests and bloodragers and rangers and ranged classes and so on.

The actual numerical benefits will be pretty much the same. So is the idea here that people do NOT want other raging classes to benefit? Or that the standard bard is supposed to be better paired with barbarians?

You can still plant rage powers as a rider if you want.
Is it that inspire courage + rage powers would be too good?

But its okay to get the same benefit if you happen to be a fighter?

I just don't get it.


Rorenado wrote:


  • You're probably not going to have a second bard in the party.
  • Only a bad idea because the ability is not versatile.

    Rorenado wrote:
  • We get it. A lot of classes have spellcasting capabilities, but if they want to cast spells that badly, they don't have to take the bonus.
  • So if you are a Cleric, Druid, Ranger, Paladin, Bard, Wizard, Sorcerer, Alchemist, Inquisitor, Magus, Oracle, Witch, Summoner, Hunter, Warpriest, Bloodrager, Investigator Arcanist or the Shaman they can all sod off?

    Not something a bard with Inspire Courage would say, since all classes can benefit from Inspire Courage.

    Rorenado wrote:


  • Same as above.
  • They can all sod off too? I guess they rather take Inspire Courage.

    Rorenado wrote:


  • Archers can still benefit from the boost to Constitution and Will, as well as the active rage power.
  • Or they could thank a bard boosting them with Inspire Courage.

    Rorenado wrote:


  • Yeah, that would be broken. Barbarians could still potentially benefit from the rage powers that they don't have, and hey, they can save their own rage ability for later if need be. Barbarians that use the song only are fatigued for one round instead of twice the number of rounds they were in their own rage (and trust me, I've been in some pretty long...
  • Broken so nothing? Potentially benefit from?

    Too bad there wasn’t a real bard in the party that could grant them Inspire Courage that BTW grant a bonus to attack and damage that stack with moral bonuses from spells such as Good hope or Heroism.

    and that let melee casters or Archer casters freely choose if they want to use a weapon or cast a spell. That spell could be Heal targeting the Skald or Remove paralysis targeting another ally.


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    It basically relegates bards to the same tired role of being a +attack/+damage battery. It's not a bad thing, but this is supposed to be a new feature for this class that blends the ferocity of a barbarian with the support power of a bard. Inspiring is not the same as whipping someone into a frenzy. The best benefit of a ragesong is its utter customizability. You can add any rage power you've learned into the song to make it a customizable buff, instead of a static morale bonus. You keep saying that the rage song can't help the barbarian and other classes, but it can. It's all about the players and characters you have with you. As well as this, a character giving out two independent bonuses, one for himself, and one for his party is a wonky mechanic to introduce. What if one person wants the benefit the other has? They're kind of stuck then. Making it be just one group wide bonus is fine. A barbarian can benefit. A barbarian may want to benefit from a rage power he may not have. As well as this, he will only be fatigued for one round as opposed to twice the amount of rounds his own rage provides. Some rangers and inquisitors actually do melee combat and could benefit. I rely much less on my magic as an inquisitor, as I do melee combat and I would provoke AoO. Adding inspire courage + rage powers would be adding too many effects to the ability, making it a weirder mechanic. It's a simple mechanic. Let's not make it too crazy.


    Rorenado wrote:
    The best benefit of a ragesong is its utter customizability.

    I clearly don’t agree.

    Rorenado wrote:
    inspire courage + rage powers would be adding too many effects to the ability, making it a weirder mechanic.

    I never implied they should. I want them to be able to choose. Ragesong this round or inspire courage.

    As of now I really hope we get a feat or archetype that let them use inspire courage instead of Ragesong.


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    I'd swap out Scribe Scroll for Combat Casting. Like a sorcerer or bard, a skald will almost never want to scribe scrolls because he can do it only for spells he knows, and he can cast them anyway. Conversely, much of the concept behind it is someone who's utterly unfazed by battle so won't have any problem casting while an orc waves axes in his face.


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    Can a skald write a scroll (or otherwise create items) of a spell gained via Spell Kenning?


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    First off, let me preface this by saying that I haven’t read most comment yet, so I might be repeating ideas that were already thrown around the forum. I apologize if that is the case. It simply means that I add my voice to those who already said them. Also, this is just my opinion, not facts. I’m merely saying what I would have liked. Now, let’s look at the class.

    Flavor-wise, I was really glad to see a skald. Viking bard are my favorite type of bard. Then only thing that concerned me at first was the possibility of being too similar to the savage skald archetype.

    The thing is that they both have a performance related to inciting rage. Since we are keeping the same flavor as the archetype, I would have like a different take on the class, more barbarian than bard. I would have ditched the spell casting altogether. For the poetry stuff, I would have borrowed from the Pathfinder Chronicler prestige class and given something like Epic Tales, linguistics bonus and so on. Keep the writing related to performance instead of spell casting.

    Speaking of performance, like many have said, either revamp the rage bonus, or stick with inspire courage. Maybe an enhance version of it? Inspire heroics too. Maybe having the choice of having a performance going for all the party, of two performances going for one ally? Giving access to rage powers (except totem powers) while under the effect of the performance? With a full BAB and performance, the skald can be an effective melee combatant, if somewhat fragile. Better than a bard, less than a full barbarian, but at increasing their allies’ effectiveness at the same time.

    All in all, I really like the concept, but in my mind, it should have been much more barbarian than bard.

    Grand Lodge

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    Mudfoot wrote:
    I'd swap out Scribe Scroll for Combat Casting. Like a sorcerer or bard, a skald will almost never want to scribe scrolls because he can do it only for spells he knows, and he can cast them anyway. Conversely, much of the concept behind it is someone who's utterly unfazed by battle so won't have any problem casting while an orc waves axes in his face.

    If not Combat Casting, then maybe Arcane Strike.

    Grand Lodge

    Agreed - scribe scroll seems to be a very strange class feature.

    Silver Crusade

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    Small note:

    Spells wrote:
    A skald casts arcane spells drawn from the bard spell lists (see pages 226-229 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook)

    That's the Cleric spell list. One of my new players started picking out Cleric spells for her Skald.


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    Rorenado wrote:
  • You're probably not going to have a second bard in the party.
  • I don't know about that one. As inspire courage is the one big attack booster that does stack with rage song, it seems the ideal 4 person party to use a skald in would be something like:

    Skald- Rage song then wade in and fight.
    Bard- Inspire courage, then either wade in or hang back with support spells (since I believe you have to opt out of rage song to start your own).
    Ranger (or Summoner)- Wade in with a pet.
    Paladin- Wade in with a pet, use lay on hands post-combat to patch everyone up.

    You're missing a few spells most parties have access to, but most bases are covered, and spell kenning covers weird corner cases. The doubled bonuses are probably worth the tradeoff.

    Meanwhile trying to put a skald in the traditional fighter/wizard/cleric/rogue group goes:

    Skald- Rage song then wade in and fight.
    Fighter- Digging the rage powers.
    Wizard- Pass on the song and cast.
    Cleric- Pass on the song and fight/cast as needed.

    Might as well just have the fighter play a barb if the rage powers are that appealing, nobody else is getting anything out of this.


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    I'm sure I'm not the first to say this, but I think I speak for many when I say that we were expecting the Skald to be a spell-less bard. Maybe just a full BAB class with Bardic Music and a few rage-power style abilities that provide narrative power, possibly tied to the music.

    Unfortunately, what we got was a Bard without music who gives everyone in the party a buff and debuff only the Fighter, Ranger, and Paladin want to deal with.

    The one shining diamond in the rough, I think, is Spell Kenning. It's a great concept that I love. I don't think the exact implementation is great (too few uses for sure, and while I'm ok with it being a non-combat thing, it takes too long to cast some of the higher level spells even out-of-combat, so that has to change as well), but the idea is certainly one I like the class exploring.

    But then, well, this really doesn't need to be a class--it could very easily just be a Bard archetype.


    I don't know if this has been proposed there are a lot of post here but here it goes. Right now raging song does very little for barbarians and it seems like these classes should play well together. So here is what i am proposing during raging song a player with barbarian levels can enter rage as their class but the rounds spent in rage while raging song is active do not count against their number of rage rounds per day.


    Skald does do one very important thing for Barbarians / Bloodragers.... Moment of Greatness.


    wheshtek wrote:
    I don't know if this has been proposed there are a lot of post here but here it goes. Right now raging song does very little for barbarians and it seems like these classes should play well together. So here is what i am proposing during raging song a player with barbarian levels can enter rage as their class but the rounds spent in rage while raging song is active do not count against their number of rage rounds per day.

    I agree with this, but I'd suggest making it work like that for any Rage effects (such as the Bloodrager's Rage, etc.)

    There's also got to be a better way to give out bonuses. For all those classes that don't care about the Strength bump, it really is a very lack-luster ability (the extra Con is just as likely to get you killed as it is to help you - Barbarians already know all about that problem, and the bonus to Will saves is such a minor thing that it's not really worth 30% of an entire classes group benefit).

    Liberty's Edge

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    I really think the best way to improve the Skald is to give it a variety of performance based "auras" and not just limit it to the rage effect. Increase its flexibility.

    Scarab Sages

    My review:

    Skald: D Continuing their tradition of naming these classes after already existing archetypes in the game, just to confuse everyone, the Skald is very similar to the bardbarian I play right now in PFS. Who is a Skald. But not this Skald. A different Skald.

    Barbarians that lose BAB, the ability to rage, and to use martial weapons? Pfft.

    Bards that get half the daily music per day? And no bardic music than a half-strength rage ability that only a couple party members will use? That will cripple spellcasters in the party if they accept it? Double pfft.

    +2 strength is +1 to hit and damage (for only strength based attackers). Inspire Courage? Hey. +1 to hit and damage. But it works with rogues, spellcasters, and even yourself. (Raging song doesn't affect the Skald!) Inspire Courage progresses faster than raging song, as well, and doesn't hurt your armor class.

    Skalds can stack their rage powers from other sources, but can only rage if they have the ability to rage outside of Skald. But since they can't take Barbarian levels, this makes it fundamentally broken (and not in the good way) as a class.

    There's a single good reason to have a Skald in your party: At 12th level, they can grant the entire party the ability to Pounce. This is enormous. Assuming you have a bunch of melee fighters, this drastically alters the balance of power in Pathfinder, allowing Team Good to alpha strike down an entire combat in the first round if done right.

    Spell Kenning, their other signature ability, is sort of whatever. Great, they can spend two 3rd level spell slots to Fireball someone. They can do this for the first time at 8th level, and they can do it once per day. Yippee. They can cast Heal once per day at 17th level. /shrug. It'd be better if they just left it as a limited number of times per day ability.

    Again, giving it a bad rating due to poor class design more than anything else. Party-wide pounce is plenty powerful, though not being able to do it yourself kind of really sucks.

    Silver Crusade

    ShakaUVM wrote:
    (Raging song doesn't affect the Skald!)
    Skald wrote:
    Raging Song (Su): A skald is trained to use the Perform skill to inspire allies (including himself, if so desired) [...]

    But that parenthetical bit isn't strictly necessary, since you are your own ally.

    You may also have a different concern. Others missed this upthread:

    Skald wrote:
    While under the effects of skald rage, allies (other than the skald) cannot use any Charisma-, Dexterity-, or Intelligence-based skills (except Acrobatics, Fly, Intimidate, and Ride) or any ability that requires patience or concentration.

    The Exchange

    On face value, this class is more Bard than Barbarian. In fact, it's so Bard that calling it a hybrid class seems a bit of a misnomer. It's a Bard with a more specialized Inspire Courage that only has synergistic value with a certain pool of classes, and it sacrifices a lot of the Bard's versatility (including versatile performance and 6+Int skill points) for the ability to use 2 spell slots to cast Cleric or Sorcerer/Wizard spells they don't know. Yeah, that's actually pretty cool.

    The list of weapons doesn't fit the Skald thematically, and since the Skald already sacrifices some of its out-of-combat versatility for a really specialized Inspire Courage I don't think it would be game-breaking to give it access to all martial weapons instead of the Bard's list of weapons.

    I wouldn't say that the Skald should be a Bard archetype, but I understand that line of criticism on this Skald: on the surface there's very little to differentiate it from a Bard, and there are some strange places where it's obviously derived from the Bard without thematic concern (including the weapon proficiencies).


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    In regards to Rage Song playing nice with Barbarians, could it not simply extend the Barbarian's own rage pool? That would be a huge boon early on (not so much later, admittedly) when counting rage rounds is more prominent. If this was mentioned earlier, I apologize—glanced through the thread a bit, but may have missed it.

    Simply changing around some baseline proficiencies would go a long way towards separating the Skald from a Bard:

  • Given the ties to viking origins, one would expect axes, swords, and shields instead of crossbows, saps, and rapiers.
  • Having d8 HD would be easier to wrap my head around if they had medium armor. Barring that, my money's on d10. I don't see the encouragement to wade in with the front line as is.

    A Skald with caster friends shouldn't be an oxymoron. No thoughts on this right away, but they need something to benefit the people who don't gnaw on their shields or weapons before the fighting happens.

  • The Exchange

    Brimleydower wrote:
    Having d8 HD would be easier to wrap my head around if they had medium armor. Barring that, my money's on d10. I don't see the encouragement to wade in with the front line as is.

    Oh yeah, this is a thing too: the Skald's song has a range of 30 ft., so to get any mileage out of that they'll have to be close to the front line, which is really harsh for a character with a d8 hit die and light armor. It feels almost like the Skald would be punished for using their main ability.

    Either bringing the hit die to d10 or giving them medium armor proficiency would rectify this.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

    Pros:
    Interesting niche idea.
    Good synergy for a martial group.
    Cons:
    Raging Song counts as bardic performance...but not for synergy with feats etc.
    Not as useful in group with casters.
    Potential abuse with group-wide rage powers
    Spell Kenning high cost, low benefit, use/day too limited.

    Grand Lodge

    I really like the core idea of this class, but it's got some problems.

    As I was trying to roll up a skald for a game, I got to the part where I was picking weapons. "Yeah, my bellowing viking is going to charge into battle with his warrior friends and smash an enemy with... a rapier? A whip? A sap?"

    I understand you were just cut-and-pasting from the bard class here, but maybe you can achieve the same balance with a different, just as limited selection of weapons?

    How about all simple weapons, plus throwing axes, light hammers, handaxes, shortswords, battleaxes, flails, warhammers, greatclubs, and shortbows?

    Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

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    Mudfoot wrote:
    Can a skald write a scroll (or otherwise create items) of a spell gained via Spell Kenning?

    I'm inclined to say no, as spell kenning just allows the skald to cast the spell, it doesn't add it to his spells known. And you can't cast a spell unless it's a spell known. (Related question is "can a magus use knowledge pool to prepare a non-magus spell, then scribe it into his book?," and I think the answer to that is also "no.")

    Joe M. wrote:

    Small note:

    Spells wrote:
    A skald casts arcane spells drawn from the bard spell lists (see pages 226-229 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook)
    That's the Cleric spell list. One of my new players started picking out Cleric spells for her Skald.

    Oops! Obviously that should refer to pages 224–226.


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    A little late to the party here, obviously -- I will start off by saying that this concept was one of the ones I was most excited about (though the new rehash of Arcanist is looking pretty cool) -- even more than Bloodrager (especially since, thematically, I would have thought it made more sense for a barbarian partial-caster to be divine and channeling totem spirits, but that's not important right now)....

    Unfortunately, as (I imagine) a lot of other people have said, the mechanics here make it look a lot more like a bard archetype than a full class on its own. It's called a hybrid, but you get bard spells and at the same progression, bard BAB and HD, bard weapons .... and then Barbarian skill points (so the one thing that's not the same is worse). Sure, it gets ragesong -- but that doesn't really feel like a new thing (especially since there are already ranger and fighter archetypes that gain full-out rage).

    The final product (other than spell keening, which is nifty, and I think makes sense) is something that never quite feels barbarian-ish -- it just looks and feels like an alternate bard -- and, what's more, these guys would be *trounced* in combat by their peers, which doesn't quite fit the mental image I have of them, either.

    So, having said that, let's look at a few things that I think could/should improve.

    1. Weapon proficiencies: The class needs access to martial weapons -- whether it's all martial weapons, or a pick a favoured weapon mechanic - but Skalds should be going into combat with Battleaxes, not rapier.

    2. Armour Proficiency: Here's a place where, if we don't want to change the BAB and HD (and I get why it wasn't, for balance sake), we might look at making a few shifts. One, giving them medium armour (to match Barbarians) wouldn't be a bad call. Yes, there is the issue of casting in medium armour, which I think is a big deal for an arcane caster at level 1 -- but here's where we can play a little -- let them do armoured casting (medium) at a higher level (something that Arcane Duelists get) -- but also have it so that they can cast without penalty while under the effects of the ragesong (since the mechanics seem to suggest the Skald can cast while under its effects).

    3. The Hit Die/BAB thing: Well, there are a few solutions I can think of -- one would be, to make up for the smaller hit die, throwing them Raging Vitality as a bonus feat (even if they don't qualify) [assuming it works in ragesong] -- or, even better, have them gain a number of temporary hit points equal to their level (in addition to the con bonus) when they start the song that last until the song ends (the fatigue when coming out of the song, fortunately, makes this hard to abuse). In terms of the BAB thing, what if they became full BAB while under the effects of their ragesong? (Sort of like how monks do when they flurry?) That might be a bit much --- but the problem is that (ATM), the supposed "averaging" of the Hit Die and BAB did nothing of the sort -- it took the weaker of each.

    3. Ragesong: I would say that this ability is a little weak. (Also, I'd call it Battle Chant -- I mean, it seems more thematically appropriate) Yes, I understand how we can give people rage powers and they get a con bonus -- it's all good -- but at the same time, it doesn't quite scale like a normal bard's ability (inspire courage is more useful across the board [applies to ranged weapons, doesn't have a 30' limit, doesn't make you fatigued, can scale up to +4 and +6 (so, really, the equivalent of +12 str), etc, etc.).

    And, worse, thematically, it doesn't even really help the Skald's most likely pals (eg - barbarians and vikings) -- and that lack of synergy means that the Skald is most useful *away* from his people. Now, my first thought was to just let others enter their own rage without paying rounds -- but then as I thought more about it, I was thinking that since the ragesong is the core and defining ability for Skalds, it might make a lot of sense to embrace it -- which includes allowing refinements (like rage powers/discovery/etc..) to the ability -- call them verses or chants or something -- which would then allow it to grow and scale a bit more -- and open them up to be more than just rage powers.

    For instance, a skald who *does* have a party rife with barbs and vikings could take the "chant" that allows him to fuel *their* rage -- so while the power is in use, they get the full benefits of own rage, but don't spend rounds or spend half rounds). That way, they can go full berserk on all of their foes. One with in party of finesse-y types might learn the "focused rage" chant (a la urban) to allow them to use their skills and/or take the bonus to dex instead of str. Another chant could grant DR (so we don't have to worry about the weirdness of whether you can grant the rage power "increased DR" to people who don't have a DR to increase). If the skald gets temporary hp per my original suggestion, a chant could let him give it to everyone. (Or, heck, he might need to get a chant to give him the temp hp in the first place..) These are just suggestions, but I'm sure we could come up with a list of good powers that make sense and just further help with the flavour of things.

    Part of me would also really love to see some sort of runecasting ability, I have to say (no, not Words of Power) -- but, again, it would be thematically appropriate -- letting them augury, for instance (which isn't on the bard spell list, so it would be a bit of useful flavour).


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    A skald with rune magic, now that is interesting.


    While I have not yet test-run the Skald (I am replacing some Faceless Stalkers that are bodyguarding Xanesha with four humans - a brawler, a skald, a slayer, and probably a swashbuckler - I figure that would be a nice little test run), I do have one request for the final product.

    Do NOT go with the current wording for what Rage Powers are usable.

    Just list the ones that can be used. Seriously. I'm going through each Rage Power and realizing "wait, this can't be used because it's an activated one. Oh, this is also activated. Wait, the only ones that aren't activated are ones I consider worthless, at least 'til 8th level?"

    Of course, what I find of use and what someone else finds of use will change. But the point is this: I'm going through the Core Book looking for specific Rage Powers that can be used and spending far more time with this than I should. If you just list the powers that are usable? Then I can just choose from that list.

    You don't need to list what the powers do. Just list the power names specifically. This will make things far far easier for players thinking of running a Skald. By reducing time and aggravation, you'll improve the likelihood someone will use this class.

    Please.

    Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

    We've updated the sticky posts with clarifications based on my comments upthread.


    I expected either better-than-bard HD AND I expected better-than-barbarian skill points.


    AndIMustMask wrote:

    in case anyone hasnt mentioned this yet:

    you may wanna add a little clause so raging song counts as bardic music for everything, not just effects that limit it, or else all those bard support feats go completely out the window for a skald (goodbye lingering performance, extra performance, spellsong, harmonic spell, discordant voice, etc. etc.).

    as a half-bard with a bard-like mechanic that works the same way, i should hope they can take some of the same methods to help themselves.

    currently it only counts as bardic performance for limiting effects, such as how many can be maintained at once.

    still nothing on this--it's kind of a big limitation to be unable to qualify for bard feats when you're rocking the same kind of gig.


    In my opinion, the class is too focused on granting rage. From what little I could find, skalds poetry praised, inspired, insulted and derided with an old meaning of derision being mockery.
    With regards to derision, "The king needed the skald to commemorate his heritage, his great victories, and his generosity— it was on the skald that his fame depended. In contrast with praise poems, a skald could also produce what was called a ní´? (an insult or derision), which was thought to have particularly dire consequences." http://medieval_literature.enacademic.com/547/skaldic_poetry

    Given the above, should the Skald have Inspire Courage and the Court Bard archetypes's Satire and Mockery abilities?


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    Wasn't the skald largely a oral tradition? Maybe I'm confusing this with something else....


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    Kenning is a bit odd. It lets you cast any Sorc/Wiz or Cleric spell...but not bard spells. Which seems like an omission.

    The people dissing Kenning by saying (eg) that a fireball at 8th level for 2 slots is feeble are missing the point. You wouldn't use it for fireball. You'd use it for something odd and vital that your party doesn't have, like Remove Blindness or Water Walk or Tongues or Clairvoyance or Water Breathing. It's very situational, but it's a hugely powerful get-out-of-jail card in the right circumstances.


    In the popularity contest of post count, this class is losing badly :(


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    Trogdar wrote:
    Wasn't the skald largely a oral tradition? Maybe I'm confusing this with something else....

    According to Wikipedia and sites on Skaldic poetry that I have seen, the skald was, originally, a type of Icelandic and Scandinavian poet skilled in skaldic poetry which was one of the two major forms of poetry in those cultures. Eventually, they became oral historians and this led them to them being in demand by Icelandic and Scandinavia leaders as a way for the leader's legacy to live on. Apparently, many kings and leaders were also skilled in skaldic poetry and some skalds became prominent leaders (e.g, Snorri Sturluson)


    And thus the first fast-talking politician came into power...


    Glutton wrote:
    In the popularity contest of post count, this class is losing badly :(

    It just isn't good enough and loving bards is an acquired taste. The Bard lovers are not the Monk lobby.

    Edit:

    As pointed out before it is MAD.

    The Class is a little bland and not unique.

    It is more a barbarian than a bard and what is left of both classes are watered down versions of both classes. What it gets in return (Ragesong)is more harmful than helpful in most parties.

    It is probably better to play a bard/barbarian with lingering performance.

    I think this class can be very powerful if it put in a very extreme party constellation. But the class is very circumstantial and none-versatile. Bard lovers won’t love this and most other players really don’t care about the bard.

    The 3/4 BAB is a problem when picking feats so perhaps just give it Power attack as a bonus feat at level 2.

    Spell Kenning is too weak. Just give it New Arcana (from Arcane Sorcerer bloodline) at level 5 and let it pick one more spell at level 9 and every four levels after. This so it can add some wizard spells to the spell list. Bull's strength, Magic weapon and and Shield are all nice spells. Arcane Eye would also be cool.

    Level 14 is a dead level. Thios should be fixed.

    I agree with others: Scribe scroll should be replaced by Cobat Casting or Arcane Strike.

    It should have medium armor prof. If an arcane duelist can cast in heavy armor why shouldn’t a Skald be able to cast in medium armor.

    A Barbarian have d12 because of its crappy AC, why should a Skald with d8 have light armor?

    Give it some bonus spells known: It needs stuff like magic weapon, Shield, Greater magic weapon and magic vestment.

    Let it be able to quick cast spells X times / day.

    My hope: A total rewrite of the class with more bardic performances. Perhaps add some new and actually good Master pieces.

    Make it a full BAB class with some bardic stuff (I hope not) or as I hope: keep it a 3/4 BAB class but make it more bard and less Barbarian or....
    Even better: Make it a lot more bard and make it a bit more Barbarian and add some really new stuff to the class.


    Mudfoot wrote:

    Kenning is a bit odd. It lets you cast any Sorc/Wiz or Cleric spell...but not bard spells. Which seems like an omission.

    The people dissing Kenning by saying (eg) that a fireball at 8th level for 2 slots is feeble are missing the point. You wouldn't use it for fireball. You'd use it for something odd and vital that your party doesn't have, like Remove Blindness or Water Walk or Tongues or Clairvoyance or Water Breathing. It's very situational, but it's a hugely powerful get-out-of-jail card in the right circumstances.

    The concept is very cool and the versatility is very good, but the cost, the casting time and the limited times per day makes it not so good. The casting time and limited use per day is especially problematic.

    Liberty's Edge

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    Summarizing some thoughts from my blog

    If the class had a more martial slant, being able to take advantage of its own rage, this might help the class stand out as more than the angry bard. But the skald is not proficient in more weapons than the bard, and still has a d8 HD and 3/4 BAB. Thus makes the skald a little awkward to play in combat – unlike the bloodrager, the skald cannot cast spells and lacks the health and attack bonuses to wade into melee. It’s really just a bard with a single unique song. Once the skald sings it either chooses not to buff itself or sits and watches the rest of the combat unfold.

    The skald suffers from the renaming problem of the bloodrager: it does not have bardic music but raging song. This makes the skald ineligible for bardic feats and prestige classes, which is a big omission.

    Giving the skald some alternate uses for raging song might be nice. Such as being able to enrage the enemy lowering their AC or forcing them to provoke Attacks of Opportunity when they attack. Something more related to the skald and its signature mechanic than spell keening.


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    Forgot about that. It can't cast spells when rageing. Bad.


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    I can see where your coming from Zark, but if I'm being honest, I can't see this class as a hybrid because there isn't enough barbarian in this class to make it a hybrid.

    If you just get down to brass tacks you won't see anything on this class that looks like it came from a barbarian other than a weaker skill set and a rage sharing mechanic that could be strong if you were in a group that doesn't make any sense. By that I mean a group with little to no casting of any kind... which is to say no group.

    Silver Crusade

    Zark wrote:
    Forgot about that. It can't cast spells when rageing. Bad.

    That is not true:

    Playtest Document wrote:
    While under the effects of skald rage, allies (other than the skald) cannot use any Charisma-, Dexterity-, or Intelligence-based skills (except Acrobatics, Fly, Intimidate, and Ride) or any ability that requires patience or concentration.


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    While i like the idea behind this class, as a bard fanatic i do have to admit that this class seems more like a bard archetype than a real bard/barbarian hybrid, my suggestions/ideas

    1)Drop Spell casting
    2) Increase Hd to D10
    3) Full BAB
    4)Change Weapon Prof/Medium Armor
    5)Keep RageSong(add new song at 6th to replace spell kenning)
    6)Keep Bard Skills/Knowledge

    A mix of the Martial properties of the Barbarian w/ the Support/skills of the bard

    Maybe even keep in spell keening that would make it more epic ie the non caster pulls some spell out of nowhere


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    Here is what I would do:
    D10 hit die(above average for attack progression which is consistent with the barb)
    Drop spells per day maximums from class progression to 4.
    Medium Armour and martial weapon proficiency(this isn't a huge mechanical boon, but it will surely help the skald be slightly less MAD and squishy early on)
    Keep skills at 4+int

    Finally, change the ragesong mechanic so that the skald enters a rage that is consistent with the barbarian rage of his level. His rage is so impressive that it inspires courage in his allies as a bard(deals with lot's of problems that have already been mentioned). Give him the same number of inspiring rage rounds as a barbarian or bard respectively. As the skald gains rage powers, he can choose to grant those powers to his allies at the cost of an additional rage point for each rage power that he shares.

    At level eight the skald could either use his rage as normal, granting his allies inspire courage, or he could triple the cost to grant rage powers to all his allies.

    I think this is a balanced option that few would have issue with.


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    You could even have the Skald provide a similar mechanic as the Ranger: his allies get HALF of his Rage Benefit. Thus when he's getting a +4/+4, they get +2/+2. When he goes to +6/+6, they go to +3/+3. And so forth.

    You could even start his Rage off at a lower level, at +2/+2, and then slowly grow it from there.


    if it's reduced like this you could make it count as competence for other ragers--giving them a boost (keeping in line with helping the barb/viking crowd), but not too hilariously high.


    I think this class is cool but I would never ever play it without knowing I had at least two "fighter" characters in a party. And--to that end--I would be f&&~ed before I'd make one for a game where I don't know what other people are building.

    Can't this be expanded just a little bit by letting some people rage as though they were urban barbarians (so they have the option of increasing dexterity)?

    Maybe they could get 3 different rage songs:
    A "standard" song that increases strength and constitution but incurs a penalty to AC and stops you from using mental stuff. (Battle rage)

    An "urban-like" rage that will increase just dexterity, but will have no AC penalty. (Cold furry rage)

    And a "blood rage-light" rage that gives just a strength bonus, but allows people to still cast spells. (Arcane might rage)


    Excaliburproxy wrote:

    I think this class is cool but I would never ever play it without knowing I had at least two "fighter" characters in a party. And--to that end--I would be f#@*ed before I'd make one for a game where I don't know what other people are building.

    Can't this be expanded just a little bit by letting some people rage as though they were urban barbarians (so they have the option of increasing dexterity)?

    Maybe they could get 3 different rage songs:
    A "standard" song that increases strength and constitution but incurs a penalty to AC and stops you from using mental stuff. (Battle rage)

    An "urban-like" rage that will increase just dexterity, but will have no AC penalty. (Cold furry rage)

    And a "blood rage-light" rage that gives just a strength bonus, but allows people to still cast spells. (Arcane might rage)

    Problem with this is that you basically end up having to choose who to buff. If your going to strip out most of the skill versatility of the bard you need to give some real combat capability back. I just have a hard time seeing the point in hybridizing a bard with a barbarian when the new class gains almost nothing for the hit to its versatility.

    This, of course, is just my opinion so take it with a grain of salt.


    you could just take the urban route for "you have X points to add to stats in increments of 2", and then apply that to the party within range--so you could tailor your song so everyone could get a little love


    I think if they bumped up the hit die and maybe have it some damage reduction it would feel a little closer to a Bard/Barbarian blend.

    The more I think about it, the more I like Rage Song, and I think the best answer would simply be a couple of archetypes that alter it. One that favors casters, and maybe one weird one that makes the rage song into an extreme diluted effect, where the listeners get no bonus or penalty, but can still use rage powers.

    Or maybe they could make Spell Kenning into the caster half of the rage song? Maybe something like casters within the range of his song (But not necessarily under the effects of it)gain a bonus to casters level or some such, as the song inspires them to find the right words. Or something far less lame.

    My original idea was something about the bard sacrificing a spell slot and any caster can use it instead. He sacrifices a level 4 spell slot and the wizard can use it to cast fireball. But that might get out of hand, or not even be very useful if at all.

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