Bard Colleges

College of Communion

Bards of the College of Communion are mystics pursuing enlightenment via musical traditions. Often shamans, monastics, or otherwise spiritual practitioners, they approach performance as sublime ritual, channeling the secret patterns of the multiverse into magical rhythms and melodies. Their instruments tend to be simple, their music esoteric, with a focus on meditation over improvisation or flourish. Most such bards care little for crowds, seeking numinous experience and companions on similar paths.

Bonus Proficiencies

When you join the College of Communion at 3rd level, you gain proficiency in Perception, Insight, and either Nature or Religion.

Harmony

Also at 3rd level, you learn to enter mystical states through music, amplifying your influence at the cost of mobility. While seated, you can use a bonus action to begin a ritual performance, anchoring your instrument and mind. At the beginning of each turn, if you have remained seated since beginning the ritual performance, you gain a Harmony charge (maximum equal to your Wisdom modifier).

During a ritual performance, you can take any action you could execute while seated, including casting spells, assigning Bardic Inspiration dice, performing Countercharm, and using objects. The ritual performance ends if you stand, move, make a non-spell attack, are incapacitated or killed, or choose to end it as a bonus action. You lose all Harmony charges when a ritual performance ends.

When you cast a spell during a ritual performance, add
the number of your Harmony charges to your spell save
DC and spell attack modifier. Whenever a creature who
can hear you rolls one of your Bardic Inspiration dice
within 60 feet of your ritual performance, add the
number of your Harmony charges to that roll.

Reverberating Form

At 6th level, you can use a bonus action to project
cosmic multiplications of your musical appendages
(arms, heads, legs, etc.) for a number of rounds
equal to your Charisma modifier. While reverberating,
your performances give Bardic Inspiration dice of a
size greater (d12 becomes d20) and you perceive your environment as if under the effect of see invisibility.
Once you use this feature, you must finish a long rest
before you can use it again.

Blinkchime

At 14th level, you can use an action to expend a
Harmony charge and instantly relocate your body
and equipment without moving to a location
within 60 feet that you can see. Additionally,
when a creature attacks you, a spell targets you,
or an effect would cause you to make a saving
throw, you can relocate instantly as a reaction by
expending 2 Harmony charges.




Maximizing Ritual Performances
Harmony charges require time to accumulate, which you can spend outside of combat without pressure. A bard who anticipates an encounter and prepares accordingly can thus begin it with maximum Harmony charges and any equipment that requires preparation already in place. Make use of savvy positioning and teamwork.

Equipment

The following equipment facilitates ritual performance and related strategies.

Instruments


Deepglow Singing Bowls

Wondrous item, uncommon

Songs of Rest you perform on these ornate metal bowls heal for additional hit points equal to your Charisma modifier. Arranging the bowls for play takes an action.


Flute of the Hopping Crow

Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement by a bard)

Whenever you perform with this slender wooden flute, other creatures within 60 feet who can hear you gain disadvantage on their next saving throw against Illusion magic. This effect ends when they finish a long rest.


Hamurat's Tabla

Wondrous item, very rare (requires attunement by a bard)

This weathered drum of ram hide and bone shudders with the rage of mountains. When a creature succeeds a melee attack roll using a Bardic Inspiration die you gave with this item, add Xd4 force damage to that attack, where X is your Charisma modifier. Creatures with a Bardic Inspiration die from this item have disadvantage on Dexterity (Stealth) checks.


Ghor, Voice of Naught

Wondrous item, legendary (requires attunement by a bard, druid, sorcerer, or warlock of evil alignment)

Burned from the proudest bough of a fallen treant king, Ghor, Voice of Naught is a black didgeridoo - a harbinger of sorrow and defeat. Its warbling baritone precedes armies of goblin, orc, or troll - whichever mob took it last - and drones on battlefields until the loser clears its dead. The Voice of Naught may vanish for a generation between conquerors, but hags feel its location relative to theirs and may direct seekers in whom they sense the instrument's malice.

Doomsinger: When an enemy creature within 60 feet hears you perform with Ghor for the first time or witnesses an ally die within that area, it must succeed a Wisdom saving throw using your spell save DC or become frightened of you for a number of rounds equal to your Charisma modifier.

Inexorability: The Voice of Naught fills its masters with the bleak certainty of murder. You and your allies within 60 feet of Ghor gain advantage on attack rolls against frightened creatures, Wisdom (Perception) checks to spot hidden creatures, and Wisdom (Survival) checks to track fleeing creatures. Additionally, when a frightened or charmed ally hears you perform with Ghor, they can as a reaction make another saving throw against the effect that frightened or charmed them, ending it on a success.

Spellcasting: Ghor, Voice of Naught has 4 charges and regains 1d4 charges daily at nightfall. You may use an action to perform with Ghor, expend 1 or more charges, and cast one of the following spells using your spell save DC: circle of death (3 charges), darkness (1 charge), Evard's black tentacles (2 charges), or finger of death (4 charges).


Items


Candle of Vitality

Wondrous item, uncommon

When lit, this milkwhite candle projects a 5-foot-radius aura in which creatures have advantage on Constitution saving throws. It consumes itself after 1 hour of burning.


Ponderous Top

Wondrous item, very rare

You can use an action to spin this tiny porcelain top for a number of rounds equal to 1d4 + your Dexterity modifier. While the top spins, creatures within 30 feet move at half speed and make non-spell attack rolls with disadvantage. On each of their turns, affected creatures can use an action to make a Wisdom saving throw using your spell save DC, escaping the effect on a success.


Sanctum Rosary

Wondrous item, very rare (requires attunement by a bard, cleric, monk, paladin, or warlock)

An attuned creature who completes an hour of chanting, prayer, or invocation over this loop of precious beads can, before finishing a long rest, use an action to cast magic circle using the rosary as its center. The spell ends if the rosary moves.


Bells of Intercession

Wondrous item, legendary (requires attunement by a spellcaster)

Crafted by a lost tradition and scattered across the Material Plane, these little bells of various magical materials protect others from harm.

While attuned and seated, you can use an action to levitate your Bells of Intercession around you in a ring. When another creature you can see within 60 feet would take damage, you can use a reaction to mentally strike one of the bells and give that creature resistance to its corresponding damage types until their next turn. The bells lower to the floor and become inactive if you stand, move, make a non-spell attack, are incapacitated or killed, or choose to lower them as an action.

Although full sets exist in monasteries, royal courts, and mercantile vaults, partial sets and individual bells are far more common. Players discover a selection of the following table at the DM's discretion, expanding their collection through adventuring.

d6 Material Damage Types
1 Chitin poison, acid
2 Crystal psychic, lightning
3 Dragonbone fire, thunder
4 Iron cold, force
5 Jade radiant, necrotic
6 Steel bludgeoning, pierecing, slashing

Bells of Intercession have a distinct and consistent design, but you can otherwise identify them with an Intelligence (Arcana) check (DC 12) or the spell identify.


Skyroot

Wondrous item, legendary

In ancient groves, crystal caverns, and other primeval hollows, the tuber of a certain red flower "holds the multiverse" - as its venerators claim. Consuming a portion of skyroot increases your Wisdom by 2, decreases your Strength by 2, and decreases your Dexterity by 2 for a number of hours equal to 1d8 minus your Constitution modifier. If you consume additional portions while under this effect, make a Constitution saving throw with a DC equal to 10 + twice the number of portions you concurrently consumed. If you fail this saving throw, you become incapacitated until you finish a long rest and your Intelligence permanently decreases by 1.

Foraging for skyroot: Creatures with proficiency in Nature can search sites of natural power for skyroot by making a Wisdom (Perception) check. Rolls of 1-14 find nothing. On rolls of 15-19, you find 1d4 portions. On rolls of 20-24, you find 1d4 + 1 portions and the result of 1 roll on the 50 gp Gemstones Table. On rolls of 25 or higher, you find 1d4 + 2 portions, the result of 2 rolls on the 50 gp Gemstones Table, and the result of 1 roll on a random Gemstones Table of 500 gp or more. Once a creature searches a location for skyroot, additional searches of the same location within 1d10 weeks automatically fail.


Design by James Pianka

jamespianka.com

Art by Ester ConceiƧao

artstation.com/artist/tehchan

Thanks to u/SwordMeow, u/IrishBandit, & Michelle Flamm
Formatted with The Homebrewery