D&D 5e: Half-Orc Bard Guide

D&D 5e: Half-Orc Bard Guide

Playing a Bard in D&D can be a fun and exciting experience. You get the chance to not only roleplay with your friends. You also learn to bring out your creativity and show off your skills. 

When most people hear about Bards, they often think of dainty Half-Elves and Gnomes playing their lute. If you want a character that’s strong and durable too, consider creating a Half-Orc Bard.

Keep reading for a quick guide on how to make and play a Half-Orc Bard. 

The Half-Orc race AND the Bard class can be found in the Player’s Handbook. Click here to pick up your own copy of The Player’s Handbook!

How to Make a Half-Orc Bard

Half-Orcs make great warriors and damage dealers, but you don’t always have to follow the mold to have fun. When you make your character, decide which Bard college (subclass) you want to take. 

A Valor Bard is a martial-focused subclass, letting you become adept in the simultaneous use of spells and weapons. This is the path where a Half-Orc character might do well. Bards from the College Lore Bards are spell-focused, being the pursuers of truth and beauty above all things. 

Start your character creation by rolling your stats. Put the highest roll under Charisma and the second-highest under Dexterity. 

How to Play a Half-Orc Bard

Mechanically, the Bard is a full support caster with martial capability. You can be as quick as a Rogue with more weapon choices that you can yield. You can also someday cast spells as powerful as Wish. Yet, you won’t have a large spell list like the Wizard.

Your job is to make everyone more awesome than they already are. That is the shortest way to explain what Bards do. For example, your Bardic Inspiration can give your allies a much-needed boost to make their hits or spells find their target. 

Here are some early-level Bard spells that’ll prove handy in combat situations:

  • Vicious Mockery
  • Faerie Fire
  • Bane
  • Sleep
  • Healing Word
  • Invisibility
  • Heat Metal

Don’t forget your Half-Orc traits, as well. When you happen to fall in combat and reach 0 hit points, you have a chance to bounce back up due to your Relentless Endurance trait. You also have Savage Attacks, but this only activates with melee weapon attacks.

How to Roleplay as a Half-Orc Bard

Use your creativity not only to design the character but to play it too. For example, often, Bards hold their instruments more than they hold blades or bows. For Half-Orcs, a thematic instrument suggestion is to pick a set of battle drums.

You can also create a Bard who uses only words and pure charismatic presence to deal damage to foes. If you like roasting other people, play as a Lore Bard so you can use Cutting Words. It may also work if you deliver corny or dry jokes. 

Take inspiration from characters like Scanlan Shorthalt, Jaskier/Dandelion, Gene Belcher, and Dewey Finn (School of Rock).

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