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Alpha-2 Bard wearing the Rosethorn gear set.[1]

Truly a force multiplier, the bard weaves songs of glory and conquest, inspiring his comrades to ever greater heights. The bard knows secret and powerful words, is able to speak into being terrible nightmares, or convince foes to become friends.

Bard2.PNG Bard is an archetype in Ashes of Creation.[2]

Bards are intended to amplify a party or raid's ability to perform within their own class. That amplification isn't just intended for DPS, but also for support, for healing, for taking damage, for movement. Bards have often been portrayed as a musical class and while they can be that, many Bard applications may exist in just telling a story. Telling a story is going to be the thematic component of how the Bard interacts with the party. And that story is going to enhance player's abilities to perform. Very similar in a way to buffing up a party, but you are not going to see him as a "buff bot" that you might have experienced in previous games, where they are only good for their buffs and then you kick them out of party and they sit in a corner and come back in 30 minutes. Those buffs are going to be related to how they perform.[3]Steven Sharif

Bard fills a non-healing support role that makes a party better as a whole through a range of buff-oriented and proximity based abilities.[4][5][6]

Q: Regarding the class composition and design revolving around the Holy Trinity, if that is the case where does a non-healing support fall into that concept of design and how will players who choose that path remain relevant throughout the gameplay loops?
A: This is a more old school idea of the Holy Trinity and where non-healing support classes fall into that mix. Generally you see in my experience most non-healing support classes fall into between the hybrid of support to tank or support to DPS, so they tend to fill a hybrid role. The Bard has an opportunity to fill that space and is a very integral component to maximizing a particular group or archetypes ability to perform through the use of their supportive and buff-oriented abilities as we've talked in the past. Many of these are support based on proximity. Some of them are support based on targeted buffs. We're going to be following the format of abilities that adhere to dances, songs, and stories when it relates to the Bard; and the scope of their particular ability sets- each of those provide a certain type of benefit to to other characters within proximity. The idea here again, pointing back to a more old-school trinity design is that no party is complete without the non-healing support class, which is the Bard in Ashes of Creation.[4]Steven Sharif

Bard classes

Class Primary Secondary
Magician Bard Mage
Minstrel Bard Bard
Siren Bard Tank
Song Warden Bard Ranger
Songcaller Bard Summoner
Soul Weaver Bard Cleric
Tellsword Bard Fighter
Trickster Bard Rogue


Bards fill a tactical non-healing hard support role. They will have more significance based on their mobility and placement in the battle.[7][4][5][6]

Q: Give us a hint on their mechanic please?
A: Proximity based skill combination melodies, through dance song and story. Hard utility and support, you will see in the future.[7]
  • Bard mechanics include proximity-based skill combination melodies through dances, songs, and stories.[7][4][8]
    • Bards can choose to activate buffs that augment tanking, evasion, DPS and healing abilities in their proximity.[9]
    • Some buffs are related to how the bard performs in combat: If a bard lands a skill shot against a target, allies within a certain range might be granted a temporary buff that relates to the skill that the bard used.[3]
  • Bards can offer proximity-based or proc-based healing, but to a much lesser degree than Clerics.[4][5][10]
  • Bards may be able to aid in the restoration of Mana.[11]
Let's say the Bard is using a weapon, has a sword out and... does some gladiatorial looking performance attack and it looks so great. It inspires his friends around him to increase their multiplier on critical damage, and now they deal additional damage against targets for the next 10 seconds or 8 seconds. So, you're going to need to be active. You're going to worry about your position, the relation of the position of your party members to you in order to accentuate really what you offer the party.[3]Steven Sharif
  • Bards are intended to not be purely support focussed. They will be a "jack of all trades", including offensive and defensive combat abilities in addition to support abilities and buffs.[16][17]
    • Certain higher tier Bard abilities will utilize proximity-based ground templates that require the party or raid to move into (and out of) formations indicated by the template to gain added benefits or buffs.[18][16]
Based on proximity, based on your mobility and placement within the battle you're going to have more significance. So it's going to be to a degree a tactical type scenario for those non-healing support classes to be cognizant of. You know, where on the battlefield they need to be positioned in connection with the group that they're trying to augment or support; and so that gives a little bit more tactical sense to these non-healing support classes that's more relevant to them than other classes per-se.[5]Steven Sharif
info-orange.pngSome of the following information has not been recently confirmed by the developers and may not be on the current development roadmap.
In other games, Bards tend to be a relatively passive way of playing and that's really not the direction that we want to go with it. We want every class to be fun to play. We want every class to be viable. We want you to feel like you are doing something: That your moment-to-moment gameplay is fun; so a lot of that stuff is going to be based on combos, on reactive interactions between your party members and the mob that you're fighting, or the player character that you're fighting. There's going to be a lot of movement from the front lines to the back lines to help out and make sure that everybody is supported in the way that they're doing it; and that you are also being active in what you're doing. You're not just sitting in the back passively playing a lute and not having any fun.[20]Jeffrey Bard

Musical abilities

  • Other archetypes may also be able to play certain musical instruments at some future time.[13]
  • Custom music creation (using the likes of the Music Macro Language) will not be present in the game on release.[22]

List of musical instruments

Bard augments

info-orange.pngThis section will be updated as soon as information is made available by the developers.


The Bard archetype is undergoing finalization of its visual effects and is scheduled for release at the start of Alpha-2.[24][25][26]


Ashes of Creation's Lead Composer is Bear McCreary. His music will be unveiled in Alpha-2 and Beta-1.[29][30][31]

Our current music is placeholder. We are working with Bear McCreary for our official music which we plan to unveil during Alpha Two and Beta One.[29]
  • Biomes and POIs will have specific musical themes associated with them. The presence of certain story arcs may weave layers into the theme for that area.[23]
If we're talking about biomes and we're talking about POIs: each of those will have distinctive themes that are associated with them. So when you're out in the wilderness, or you're out at a specific POI, those will have soundtracks that will play. As well, each of those systems will encompass a layered effect that can reflect the stage of certain types of events within an area. So, for example, the POI that is Carphen: that will have a general theme for Carphin that will play as you move into the area, but depending on the effects of a particular story arc we may weave in a layer of the soundtrack that reflects perhaps the voice of the raid boss when she's present.[23]Steven Sharif
  • Combat states may also feature different musical themes.[23]
The soundtrack is going to incorporate either elements of intrigue or mystery or horror that's part of winding through that level to get to that boss, it's building up to the crescendo of the fight. Music is such an important part of setting the scene- the emotional presence of what you are doing in this immersive world. It elicits emotional responses. And we have a great composer Bear McCreary who has worked on God of War, Battlestar Galactica, Outlander, Black Sails; a lot of great franchises and great IPs; and I think he is going to do an awesome job in capturing the essence of what that emotional response should be from a player.[32]Steven Sharif
When we put out any music in our game... we want content creators to be able to create content utilizing our game. So just message us and we'll try to resolve any of those [DMCA] problems if you encounter any.[34]Margaret Krohn


Archetype list

Icon Archetype Type.[35] Role.[36] Resource.[37][38]
Bard2.PNG Bard Arcane Support -
Cleric4.PNG Cleric Arcane Support Divine Power
Fighter2.PNG Fighter Martial Damage Combat Momentum
Mage3.PNG Mage Arcane Damage -
Ranger3.PNG Ranger Martial Damage -
Rogue2a.PNG Rogue Martial Damage -
Summoner3a.PNG Summoner Arcane - -
Tank1.PNG Tank Martial Tank Courage

See also


  1. - This month's bard will be wearing the beautiful Rosethorn set found only within the Citadel of the Steelbloom!
  2. Archetype breakdown.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Livestream, 2018-04-8 (PM) (46:11).
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Livestream, April 7, 2023 (1:05:57).
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Podcast, April 11, 2021 (13:30).
  6. 6.0 6.1 Livestream, January 18, 2018 (45:52).
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 steven-bard.png
  8. Livestream, December 2, 2022 (1:04:16).
  9. Interview, July 19, 2020 (1:00:04).
  10. Livestream, July 25, 2020 (58:38).
  11. Video, March 29, 2024 (55:06).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Livestream, June 28, 2019 (1:21:02).
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Livestream, December 2, 2022 (1:26:47).
  14. 14.0 14.1 Livestream, 2018-04-8 (PM) (1:18:37).
  15. 15.0 15.1 Livestream, July 28, 2017 (40:15).
  16. 16.0 16.1 Interview, June 13, 2021 (8:33).
  17. 17.0 17.1 Livestream, May 17, 2017 (1:06:19).
  18. Livestream, January 28, 2022 (1:09:26).
  19. 19.0 19.1 Livestream, May 19, 2017 (39:55).
  20. Livestream, June 1, 2017 (22:58).
  21. 21.0 21.1 Livestream, February 29, 2024 (1:10:23).
  22. Livestream, November 30, 2020 (1:15:35).
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 23.4 Livestream, September 29, 2023 (1:08:25).
  24. Livestream, April 30, 2024 (51:54).
  25. Interview, July 9, 2023 (1:11:29).
  26. Interview, July 9, 2023 (1:06:53).
  27. Newsletter, 2018-08-7
  28. Interview, October 17, 2020 (53:50).
  29. 29.0 29.1 - Ashes of Creation Music.
  30. steven-bear-a2.png
  31. steven-bear-beta-1.png
  32. 32.0 32.1 Interview, June 13, 2021 (11:15).
  33. roshen-a1-music.png
  34. 34.0 34.1 Livestream, June 25, 2021 (1:07:45).
  35. Interview, July 29, 2020 (49:53).
  36. Group dynamics blog.
  37. Livestream, April 28, 2023 (1:02:04).
  38. steven-class-resources.png