Character Building

Bard Class Builder: Level One

Today I’m going to walk you through building a bard character for your Dungeons & Dragons game. Bards are natural entertainers and have the negative reputation of being the most obnoxious class in a party. I think they’re awesome, though. 


First and foremost, we will go over proficiencies and starter equipment.


(Images in this post are owned by Wizards of the Coast, LLC)

First, Choose ANY Three Skills You'd Like to Be "Proficient" In!

Remember that your proficiencies are like extra points in a set area. It simply boosts your variety of skills a bit. (I always try to find a way to increase my Perception I’m where able to.)


Animal Handling










Sleight of Hand







Then, Understand Your Pre-Determined Proficiencies.

It might help you choose the most effective starter gear to know that, as a bard, you’re automatically proficient in the following:


  • Three Musical Instruments of Your Choice

Savings Throws

  • Dexterity
  • Charisma


  • Simple Weapons
  • Hand crossbows
  • Longswords
  • Rapiers
  • Short Swords


  • Light Armor

Now, You Can Choose Your Starter Equipment!

By now you’ve finished marking down your proficiencies on your character sheet.  Now it’s time to get your complimentary starter equipment ready.

Choose One of the Following Three Items:

One Rapier

One Long Sword

One Simple Weapon

+ Simple weapons include clubs, daggers, great-clubs, hand-axes, javelins, light hammers, maces, quarter staffs, sickles, spears, light crossbows, darts, short-bows, and slings.

Choose One of the Following Two Items:

A Diplomat's Pack

An Entertainer's Pack

Choose One of the Following Two Items:

A Lute

Any Single Musical Instrument

You Also Get Both of These:

Leather Armor


If you’re into meta-gaming, you can use this printable backpack page to keep track of your items as well as their size and weight.

Level One Stats:

Your level one proficiency bonus for a bard is +2.

You have “bardic inspiration.” 

You may choose two cantrips and two level one spells of your choice. At first level you have two spell slots. You do not need to use a spell slot for cantrips.

Now you’re ready to start your adventure! Enjoy!

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