Monday, January 9, 2017

Bardic College: College of the Crossroads [ROUGH DRAFT]

Sometimes, I sit on projects for a really really REALLY long time. If you look, you can see that I made a reference to this project in July of last year.

True to its name, the Bardic College of the Crossroads is a Devil-Went-Down-To-Georgia deal, gaining infernal musical power through besting a devil, or simply by cutting a deal or stealing from the forces of Hell.

Originally, I planned to have this as a sort of answer to a warlock's pact, with options dealing with the fey and great old ones, but I ended up feeling this was ill-advised for a couple of reasons. For one, it made the option feel very indistinct, like it didn't know what it was trying to do. For two, the Glamour Bard UA came out and undercut me with a fey bard. Such is the price of going on hiatus and dragging my ass, I guess.

What's worth playing about a Crossroads bard? Well:


  • A precious instrument that is the source of your powers, made of gold, silver, ruby, or similar.
  • Self-focused Bardic Inspiration powers to keep you (and only you) safe from harm.
  • Conjure a band of backup demons, good for helping in combat AND cheating at fiddle contests.
  • Surprisingly, flavor might be weaker than I'd like. It IS a rough draft, though, and usually you guys are very good at helping me with flavor. 
  • Bard capstones are hard to balance against one another, but I think this one was just about right. If it's too weak, it'll be easy to tweak and rebalance. 
  • Apparently I'm sitting on a wealth of almost-finished work. Time to fix that. 


  1. This is awesome. I have an NPC that fits nicely with this archetype. my only requests would be so the Precious Instrument did something else, like depending on the material ( gold, silver, crystal,etc) it had special power or effect, like a ruby instrument let's you spend a Bardic Inspiration to give yourself fire resistance for 1 minute, or something like this.

    1. That'd be tricky. My idea for the different materials is that it's more of a fluff-to-suit-your-character thing.

      I wouldn't want someone who really wants a silver harp have to agonize over choosing a ruby harp instead, because ruby's benefit is much more optimal. Y'know?

      Still, great idea to allow variation, I'm just not sure it'd work well in this instance.

  2. I had a character that was a lore bard, but he is totally switching to this if my DM allows it because it fits so well