I mean, being a bard is pretty silly. You walk into dungeons and SING at people. Who could take that seriously?

The Bard is a class that is known to be a wanderer and one who collects stories of legend and lore. In D&D they are reliant on illusion and non-combat abilities, and are useful for both for direct combat and party support. Bards can use "Bardic Music" abilities multiple times per day to enhance allies as well.

Bardic MusicEdit

See also: List of Comics Using Bardic Music

Inspire CompetenceEdit

One of the Bard's "Bardic Music" abilities is Inspire Competence. This ability allows an ally to gain a bonus on their skill check. The Player's Handbook notes that "The DM may rule that certain uses of this ability are infeasible - chanting to make a rogue move more quietly, for example, is self-defeating." Inappropriate uses of this ability become a running gag for Elan.

Inspire Competence is mentioned in Comic #4, "The Power of Music".

Elan used Inspire Competence in: #4, #6, #19, #41, #50, #109, #125, #180, #181, #217, #262, #348, #472, #556, #692, #837, #867, #880, #935, and #1061.

Jenny used Inspire Competence in #610.

Inspire CourageEdit

This "Bardic Music" ability gives allies bonuses to their chance to hit and damage, as well as a bonus against charm and fear effects.

The party discusses the mechanics of Inspire Courage in Comic #34, "Math is Fun".

Elan used Inspire Courage in: #1, #34, #61, #200, #201, #454, #851, and #918.

It's possible that some of these instances are actually uses of Inspire Greatness or Inspire Heroics, below, although the latter could only be used after about #860 when Elan reached 15th level.


Bards can command the attention of those listening to their music or poetics, causing them to stop anything else they are doing.

Elan Fascinates the crowds in: #238, #421, #445,


Once fascinated, if the bard is over 6th level, he can try to Suggest a course of action through his music.

Elan uses (or attempts to use) the power of Suggestion in #238

Inspire GreatnessEdit

At 9th level, bards can inspire greatness in more or more creatures, giving bonuses to attacks, extra hit points, and bonuses to Fortitude saves.

Elan uses Inspire Greatness in: #593, #852

Song of FreedomEdit

At high level, bards can use their music to break enchantments.

Elan used Song of Freedom only once, in #890, "Dream Free".

Inspire HeroicsEdit

At high level, bards can inspire great acts of heroism in an individual, granting bonuses to armor class and saving throws.

Elan uses Inspire Heroics in #932.


Bardic music can be used to counter magical effects which depend on sound (such as suggestion). Elan has not used this class feature in the comics.

Mass SuggestionEdit

Elan has not reached a high enough level to use mass suggestion, one reason that his attempt to influence the crowd at the Weary Travelers Inn and Tavern failed.

Bardic KnowledgeEdit

Drawing form the large pool of knowledge a bard gets while wandering and learning stories, sometimes a bard character can know pieces of lore or knowledge that are obscure pieces of knowledge.

Bardic Knowledge is mentioned (as "bardic lore") in Comic #18, "Double Surprise".


Bards have a number of arcane spells which are available to them, though they can only know a limited number at any time. Elan's early repertoire focused on simple illusions, but he has since expanded into his role as the party's back-up healer.

Characters in Order of the Stick with levels in BardEdit


Base Classes: BarbarianBardClericDruidFighterPaladinMonkRangerRogueSorcererWizard

Prestige Classes: Arcane TricksterArchmageAssassinBeastmasterDashing SwordsmanMystic TheurgeShadowdancer
Other Classes: Favored SoulNinja
NPC Classes: AristocratCommonerExpertWarrior

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