|Systems and Tools|
The Bardic Music system provides bards with a variety of songs in addition to the two currently available to the class (the standard bard song, and curse song, if the feat was taken). There are nine songs in total, each with its own level and perform requirements. The lyrics to the songs can be found in Legendary Songbooks: rare and valuable tomes that, once obtained, provide the means to unleashing powerful inspirational magic.
Each use of a legendary songbook counts as a single use of the bard song class feat.
Bard songs typically affect all allies within hearing distance, and many of them become more powerful as the bard gains experience and masters performance.
Some songs are so taxing on a bard that they cannot be sung again until the bard has had a chance to recover energy for another performance. This period of time is known as a cooldown.
With the Fascinate song, bards can use their music or poetics to mesmerize one or more hostile creatures. Each creature must be within 25 meters and be able to see and hear the bard. At first level, a bard may entrance a single creature; for every three levels a bard attains beyond the first, they can captivate one additional creature with a single performance.
Any creature who fails its save and is vulnerable to mind-affecting abilities will stop what it is doing and listen to the song, taking no other actions for the length of the performance.
Any attack upon fascinated creatures or their allies will immediately break the effect.
Note: for Fascinate to work properly when with a group of PCs, they need to be in a party; if not, the creatures will continue to view the non-partied creatures as enemies.
Bards can use the power of their music to protect the most vulnerable nearby listener, covering them with a sonic cloak in times of peril. Haven Song has a range of 15 meters and will magically seek out and remove from sight the ally whose health is most at risk. Enemies who fail a will save are unable to take hostile action against the ally protected by the song for one turn.
Bards have historically used the rousing Longstride march to inspire comrades to step lively when traveling across land, allowing a party of adventurers to cover much greater distances in the course of a day. All allies who can hear the song move fifty percent faster.
Less courageous bards have been known to employ it as a song of mass retreat.
The Song of Valor (which some bards refer to as the Song of Sacrifice) motivates a single targeted ally to greatness. For one turn, the inspired creature gains a +4 dodge bonus to AC, +4 to attack, +4 to damage, and a +4 morale bonus to saving throws. However, since the performance demands the singer's full attention, the bard temporarily loses combat awareness, receiving penalties equal to half the boons inspired in the ally.
This emboldening chant dramatically increases the defensive ability of nearby allies. For one turn, all those who can hear the bard gain resistance to most forms of damage. Apprentice bards inspire allies to ignore the first five points of injury. For bards of twenty seasons, the protection increases to ten points; and for truly legendary bards of thirty or more seasons, the resistance will negate fifteen points of potential damage.
Note: resistance is to all damage types except divine.
The Song of Freedom brings liberty and clarity to allies who hear it, dispelling enchantments that daze, stun, confuse, dominate, or otherwise affect the mind in harmful ways, and rids allies of transmutations that restrict movement.
For each adverse condition inflicted upon the party, the bard makes a perform check; the result is divided by 2.5 and must match or exceed a DC of 11 plus the caster level of the effect to be dispelled.
Requirements: Bard 15, Perform 18
Area of effect: 15 m. radius
Duration: 5 rounds
DC: 10 + bard levels/2 + perform/8
(allies receive +6 awareness bonus)
Save: Will negates
Cooldown: 5 turns
The bard draws upon their well of music, poetry and chaos to awaken primal urges and create an atmosphere of mass pandemonium. All within range of the song are susceptible to being confused by it unless protected from mind spells or deafened. The allies of the bard are not immune to the chaos, but being aware of the bard's intentions, they save at +6 versus the effect.
Countersong is a lyric of Abjuration designed to shield allies from harmful magic. Any friendly creature within 15 meters who can hear the bard sing receives spell resistance equal to 10 plus the number of bard levels, if it is higher than any spell resistance the creature already possesses.
Countersong has no effect against magic that ignores spell resistance. The bard may keep up the countersong for 1 turn.
This exhilarating march inspires allies to surpass their limitations, motivating them to fight as well as the best fighter in the company. Every ally who can hear the bard receives the same base attack bonus as the highest one found in the party. Additionally, all allies receive a +4 morale bonus to damage rolls. The spellsong lasts for one turn, and cannot be used more often than once every 10 turns.
Note: base attack bonus is not actually changed; instead, a bonus to attack is given.