The Halfling Bard is a delightful creature with the heart of a hero, the soul of a minstrel, and the voice of an angel. Picture, if you will, a pint-sized troubadour with a lute in hand and a grin on their face.
A Halfling Bard is not just a musician, mind you. They are also a master of magic, able to weave spells and incantations into their music to mesmerize their audience or strike fear into the hearts of their enemies.
A Halfling Bard is the perfect combination of entertainment and combat prowess.
If you ever need a bit of musical magic to brighten your day – or to save your skin in a tight spot – look no further than a Halfling Bard.
Creating a Halfling Bard
Halflings love nothing more than the comfort of their own homes, a place of peace and quiet, far from those who would do them harm.
Some Halflings do the opposite of staying home, forming bands of nomadic travelers lured by the open road.
Even though they like their peace and quiet, Halflings work well with others, treating their friends exceptionally well, even if they aren’t a Halfling.
They can become unexpectedly fierce when their family, friends, or community becomes threatened.
|Skin||Ranging from tan to pale|
|Hair (Including their Beard)||Brown or sandy brown (often wavy)|
Men usually have sideburns, but beards and mustaches are very rare
|Eyes||Brown or hazel eyes|
Note: These features can be slightly changed or modified if some variations don’t fit your character.
Halflings have 6 subraces, some being only slightly different and others being completely different from common Halflings.
Lightfoot Halfling – Lightfoot Halflings are the most common Halflings filled with wanderlust and often found living among other races, always getting along with everyone they meet.
Stout Halfling – Stout Halflings are hardier than your average Halfling, even having resistance to poison. There are rumors of Stout Halflings having dwarven blood, but that’s never been proven.
Ghostwise Halfling – Ghostwise Halflings are some of the rarest Halflings, existing only in the Chondalwood and a handful of other forests.
They are usually clannish and very mistrustful of outsiders, making Ghostwise Halfling adventurers rare but not unheard of.
Lotusden Halfling – Lotusden Halflings are found in the Lotusden Greenwood and have adapted to their chaotic wilds, often becoming druids or at least learning about druidic magic.
Mark of Hospitality Halfling – Mark of Hospitality Halflings are gifted with unrivaled hospitality, evident by the spells they learn and the Charisma-orientated skill focuses.
Mark of Healing Halfling – Mark of Hospitality Halflings are some of the best healers you can get.
Their inherited Wisdom, focus, and spell list make them exceptional druids, and their size makes it easy for them to accomplish these healing tasks without being hit (or just hiding behind their Paladin).
Bard Class Features
|Hit Dice||1d8 per Bard level|
|HP at level 1||8 + Constitution level|
|HP at Higher levels||1d8 (or 5) + Constitution modifier per Bard level after level 1|
|Weapons||Simple weapons, Hand Crossbows, Longswords, Rapiers, Shortswords|
|Tools||Three musical instruments you choose|
|Saving Throws||Dexterity, Charisma|
|Skills||Choose any three|
Once you reach level 3, you’ll be able to unlock the techniques of different bard colleges; choosing one will give you specific features, so try optimizing your choices with your subrace.
Creation – College of Creation Bards are obsessed with the cosmos, believing it is a work of art, a creation of the first dragons and gods.
You can often hear them sing the Song of Creation, filling those around them with deep emotions.
Eloquence – College of Eloquence Bards are master orators, using persuasion, reason, and a well-spoken argument to solve most problems. These Bards are experts at plucking the heartstring of those listening and even winning over skeptics.
Glamour – College of Glamour Bards learned their craft in the Feywild, using their magic to enlighten and captivate those who listen to their song. There are tales of these Bards successfully lulling powerful dragons with their song and speech.
Lore – College of Lore Bards knows something of everything, having diverse knowledge about almost any matter. They are experts at unraveling lies, exposing corruption, and telling the truth in the most compelling manner.
Spirits – College of Spirits Bards study fiction, histories, and legends in search of great power. They use magic to call upon forces to once again change the world, just as in their books.
Swords – College of Swords Bards entertain through weapon prowess – swallowing swords, jugglings knives, and mocking combatants. They are skilled with weapons and often combine them with powerful magical effects.
Valor – College of Valor Bards tells the tales of legendary heroes, both in the past and in the present. They usually travel to these great events to catch a firsthand experience, which is why their songs are so emotional and detailed.
Whispers – College of Whispers Bards seem like ordinary Bards, singing and dancing as usual, but their motives are as dangerous as their teachings.
These Bards are wolves in sheep’s clothing. They uncover secrets and turn people against each other using threats and extortion.
In most cases, these Bards claim to follow a different college, only revealing their true college when it is absolutely necessary.
Note: Watch out for College of Whispers Bards in royal courts and among the highest echelons of society, as they can worm themselves into any situation.
Combining Class With Race
Determining Your Subclass
You’ll be making your own subjective choice when choosing your subclass, so before choosing, try to understand what your character wants to do and how well the chosen subclass fits with your subrace.
|College of Creation||Support|
|College of Eloquence||Face/Support|
|College of Glamour||Support|
|College of Lore||Face/Librarian|
|College of Spirits||Support/Utility Caster|
|College of Swords||Striker|
|College of Valor||Defender/Striker|
|College of Whispers||Face/Striker|
The bonus Dexterity (2) Halflings receive already shows that they have potential as a Bard.
Halfling Bards should take on the Mark of Hospitality subrace, as it increases their Charisma (1), also providing them with some ideal support spells and newly added spells to their spell list.
You need to think of a background that embraces the core values of a Halfling yet leads you down the path of becoming a Bard.
Start by asking yourself some basic questions: Where were they born, and where did they come from? Do they have any goals, bonds, or ideals, and what are their flaws? Where do they belong in social circles and society as a whole? What inspires them?
Place of Birth
A Halfling Bard needs a unique background that will affect their choices, as well as the way they see the world and what they want to achieve.
Try to make their place of birth and upbringing correspond with their personality traits, ideals, bonds, and flaws – this will truly bring their character alive.
Note: The birthplaces of races are usually mentioned in the Player’s Handbook or some of its expansion books.
Characteristics and Personality Traits
Halfling Bards are short yet made tall by their charm, magically cheerful melodies, and witty jokes. Yet, you don’t need to follow this layout; you can create your own personality unique to your character.
Halfling Bard Examples:
- Sarcasm and insults are my weapons of choice.
- Flattery is my preferred trick for getting what I want.
Ideals, Bonds, and Flaws
Ideal – Express one ideal that is a driving force in a Halfling Bard’s life – their conviction, ethical principle, and moral standing (probably something about nature).
I never target people who can’t afford to lose a few coins.
Bonds – Think of a single bond that your Halfling Bard has to an event, person, or place. Bonds will tie them to their background and can inspire bravery or stimulate memories driving them against their ideals.
I swindled and ruined a person who didn’t deserve it. I seek to atone for my misdeeds but might never be able to forgive myself.
Flaws – Choose a single flaw for a Halfling Bard – their unhealthy compulsion, greatest fear/weakness, or most vile vice.
I’m a sucker for a pretty face.
The DM can use inspiration to reward you for playing according to your bond, personality traits, ideals, and flaw.
Playing a good song once in a while gives me new strength.
Note: If you’re struggling to create your background or just don’t want to think, the Player’s Handbook has well-thought-through backgrounds that you can use for your character or use as a mold.
Supplies and Gear
Bards start with the following equipment, together with the equipment from their background. Choosing equipment based on your situation and your character’s proficiencies is the easiest way to go about things.
- (a) A rapier (b) A longsword (c) Any simple weapon
- (a) A diplomat’s pack or (b) An entertainer’s pack
- (a) A lute or (b) Any other musical instrument
- A dagger and leather armor
You can decide how your character came about these goods – whether they stole, inherited, or purchased them some time back – adding to your character’s background.
Note: If you aren’t satisfied with your equipment, you can always use your starting wealth to buy other equipment (5d4 x 10 GP for Bards).
Halflings already possess a charm no other race has, being exceptionally kind and always willing to eat and drink, even though their bodies are so small.
If your party needs someone with magical abilities (Utility Caster, Support, or Controller) and the charm to make even a Tiefling smile, look no further than a Halfling Bard.
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