Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Battle of the Bards: AD&D vs. C&C

Ok, maybe I should wait until I have the AD&D and C&C books in front of me before I get into this. Nah. I'm impatient and lazy, so I'm just going to riff on this one. Here goes:

So I'm playing a bard in a campaign using the awesome C&C rules. Anyone who's read this blog for any amount of time knows I love C&C. But now that I'm playing again, and playing a class that I've never played before in any version of D&D, I'm having some issues with some of the rule choices.

So yeah, I'm playing a bard for the first time ever in my gaming career. I thought it would be good to try something new. Anyway, there's this bard ability called "Exalt" that basically boils down to my bard chanting or singing or playing an instrument or something, and inspiring my companions. All well and good.

But this class power only seems to help companions with bonuses to saving throws and attribute checks, not combat bonuses. Somehow, that doesn't make sense to me. I mean, the description of the power mentions "battle cry" or something like that as one method of performing Exalt. So, you loose a battle cry but your companions only benefit via better saving throws? That just seems rather limited to me.

Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the AD&D bard (1E and/or 2E) have some similar ability that provided bonuses to combat for companions?

Overall, I'm finding the C&C bard sort of, well, bare. Meaning, there doesn't seem to be much that the bard can offer. Sure, Legend Lore is awesome. It allows a bard the potential to know vital tidbits of information during the course of a session. But that and Exalt are the only class powers that a bard has at low levels (I think...again, I don't have the C&C PHB in front of me at the moment).

This issue might seem minor, but there are other C&C class abilities that I'm having issues with here and there. This is sort of making me pine all the more for some Classic D&D. Less character class "powers" to deal with during a game, you know? Meaning, more room for player creativity, right?!

Anyway, any insight you wonderful folks out there can provide, that would be awesome, as per usual! What would I do with out our virtual collective consciousness/hive mind?


  1. The C&C bard is bare. I give it extra abilities. However, there is an ability later that does what you want, giving combat bonuses. That said, I don't think you acquire it until 9th level.

    1. Good, I'm not just crazy!! ;-) What abilities do YOU give the C&C bard, pray tell?

      Yeah, I think you're right, you have to wait until 9th level to bestow combat bonuses with some other ability you gain.

  2. To tell the truth, I let our group's bard pick an ability form some I had pre-chosen from the 2E Bard's Handbook. As the C&C bard is somewhat combat oriented he picked one that came from the "blade" kit. I was effectively a "doom" spell once per combat.

  3. Another option I had thought about was in making a short spell list. Less than the 2E & 3E bard, since the C&C one has more combat prowess, but I didn't think that would go well. However, I will point out the C&C bard's 4th level ability eventually becomes pretty awesome, as it covers several spells, AT WILL.