One of my players asked me to take another look at the Minstrel in light of recent developments in our Monday-night Dungeons & Dragons game.

Here’s the Revised Minstrel class:
Download: Essentials Minstrel (Bard) v.2

And of course, the original class for reference:
Heroic Minstrel class (Jul 1, 2013)

The first change I made was to drop the “Bardic Implements” class feature, since it never really worked the way I hoped it would. When I go back and revise the Wayfarer eventually, I’ll replace his “Implement Mastery” feature. It was a cool idea — modifying basic attacks directly — but it just didn’t catch on the way I hoped it would.

In its place, you’ll find the Deceptive Duelist feature, one you’ll recognize from the Skald. Already looking a bit more like a Bard, isn’t it? I also removed heavy shield proficiency, and updated several powers to reflect a “once per turn” usage limit.

The Minstrel now recognizes that it’s a Controller-Leader instead of a Leader-Controller. It was a nice sentiment before, but its heart just wasn’t totally there. Additionally, the Minstrel now acknowledges a strong Martial influence.

“Fascinate” was renamed to Enticing Melody, which is a little more evocative I think. Bardic Music is now simply an at-will instead of a recharging encounter power. Both powers have a once-per-turn limitation. Sound Burst now targets Fortitude.

I rewrote Improved First Aid as a power, which will hopefully make it a little easier to understand than the feature it was before. When I go back for another revision of the Captain, I’ll update the feature there too. “Suggestion” is now Implant Suggestion.

Finally, I replaced the capstone utility feature with the power, Mending Refrain. It’s a pretty simple power that allows allies to spend a healing surge as a minor action for a round, but I like it. It’s nice. Clean. Elegant. It’s tied right to Inspiring Ballad.

All in all, I think the Minstrel was pretty well complete when I designed the class initially. Now it has some polish, and I’m really not sure what else I could do with it that wouldn’t completely change it. Now to tend to another class based on the Bard archetype…

Play at your own risk!