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The Bard: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), Tips, and Information - PLEASE READ ME FIRST! (Last Upd

Discussion in 'UO Bard' started by Guest, Dec 20, 2002.

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    So you want to be a bard eh? Welcome, welcome!! Perhaps you'll become a legend the likes of Xiombarg or Greatfellow, or a bard of mystic arts and music like Baphomet or hopful, or learn to weave the bard's dance like Salem07 or Raven of Pagan.

    These are names to remember friend.

    Sit down, sit down! Have a tankard of ale and draw a candle close. Read on, and learn. Many have contributed to this work. How to train, where to go, what to expect...

    It took many a bard plenty of hours to gather the wisdom I set down here. Maglorious, Nadya Modavia, those are ones to thank. The bards that have come here through the years. To all of them I give my thanks for their tireless efforts, and inspiration. I hold their trust to promote barding for what it is.

    I hope you appreciate their assistance as much as I do.


    Musicianship is the skill that gets checked before any other barding ability - that means if a bard fails this skill check he fails the skill check of the secondary barding skill (Provocation, Peacemaking, Discordance) automatically.

    Musical instruments now have charges and wear out when used. You can find out how many charges an instrument has by single-clicking on it (player-made or NPC instruments) or by using Item ID on it (magic instruments).

    To use an instrument you have to double-click it.

    If you have previously used a musical instrument, and that instrument is still in your backpack, you automatically use that instrument.

    If you have UOAssist you can set up a macro for using a certain type of instrument which will prevent you from having to manually target a new instrument in the heat of the battle, because the one you were just using broke.

    To make exceptional instruments Carpentry (at least 57.8 - best of course at GM) and Musicianship (45.0) is required .

    Using an exceptional instrument adds a 10% chance of success (reduces base difficulty by 5 points).
    Using an aligned Slayer instrument adds a 20% chance of success (reduces base difficulty by 10 points).
    Using opposite aligned Slayer instruments subtracts 20% from your chance of success (adds 10 points to the base difficulty).

    Slayer instruments have the same abilities as Virtue weapons, meaning that they are more effective against a certain groups of creatures and less effective against other groups. For example: An instrument of Daemon Dismissal will increase the chance to use a barding ability against any variety of daemons by 20% when this instrument is used whereas it will reduce the chance of success by 20% when used against elementals (since those are the opposite aligned group).

    Magical instruments are quite common and can be found as loot on various creatures.

    Regardless of the name on the instrument (Dismissal, Slaughter, Slaying, Ban, etc.) the instrument adds the same 20% chance to succeed when used against the correct monster. That is a very important point, as using an enchanted instrument against any creature the instrument is not meant for reduces the chance to succeed by 20%!

    For example: A bard has a drum of daemon dismissal. He runs into a blood elemental and a daemon. Using the drum on the daemon increases his chance to provoke it by 20%, but if he uses the same drum and targets the blood elemental, his chances to provoke are reduced by 20%.

    This tends to "even things out", as monsters have different provocation, discordance, and targeted peacemaking requirements. There is no way to prevent this, other than by taking a moment to select another instrument (preferrably GM made) and use it on both targets.

    Slayer Instruments by Group and "Opposites":

    These instruments have been identified so far, and if they have been tested, the monsters they affect will be noted next to them.

    Slayer Instrument Type: Humanoid Opposing Group: Undead

    Ogre Trashing
    Orc Slaying
    Troll Slaughter

    Slayer Instrument Type: Undead Opposing Group: Humanoid (Ogres, Orcs, Trolls, Cyclopses and Titans )

    Slayer Instrument Type: Elemental Opposing Group: Abyss

    Elemental Ban
    Blood Drinking - use against Blood Elementals
    Earth Shatter - use against Earth Elementals
    Elemental Health - use against Poison Elementals
    Flame Dousing - use against Fire Elementals
    Summer Wind - use against Snow Elementals
    Vacuum - use against Air Elementals
    Water Dissipation - use against Water Elementals

    Slayer Instrument Type: Abyss Opposing Group: Elemental

    Exorcism - use against Daemons and Balrons
    Daemon Dismissal - use against Daemons and Balrons
    Gargoyle's Foe - use against Daemons and Balrons

    Slayer Instrument Type: Arachnid Opposing Group: Reptilian

    Arachnid Doom
    Scorpion's Bane
    Spider's Death
    Terathan Slaying

    Slayer Instrument Type: Reptilian Opposing Group: Arachnid

    Reptilian Death
    Dragon Slaying - Dragons, Drakes, Skeletal and Serpentine Dragons (confirmed - thanks Nadya! :)}
    Lizardman Slaughter
    Snake's Bane
    Ophidian Slaying

    Slayer Instrument Type: Undead Slayer Opposing Group: Humanoid

    With the advent of AoS, the Undead Slayer instrument has the same effect as a silver weapon - it is meant to destroy those creatures that are trapped between life and true death:

    Ancient Lich
    Bone Knight
    Bone Magi
    Dark Guardian
    Flesh Golem
    Gore Fiend
    Lich Lord
    Rotting Corpse
    Skeletal Knight
    Skeletal Mage
    Skeletal Steed

    BE WARNED!! Use of an undead slayer instrument on an opposite may very well cause the humanoids (orcs for instance) to do double damage on you!

    From Nadya_Modavia: Confirmations on Exorcism, Daemon Dismissal, Gargoyle's Foe, Dragon slaying instruments.

    Fire Horns

    From Nadya Modavia's interview with Vex:

    The complete interview between Nadya and Vex can be found here


    The base range of all bard abilities is 8 tiles, with each 15 points of skill in ability being used this range gets increased by one tile. Bards must be within this range of their target to use the ability. In addition the bard must stay within that range or the effect of the ability will end.

    Once a barding ability (Provocation, Peacemaking, Discordance) has been used on a target, the bard must remain alive, visible and within the range of the target or the effect of the ability ends. Regarding creatures with “Dragon AI” (daemons, drakes, hellhounds, nightmares and of course dragons): If at any point the bard moves while using any barding ability that might compel the creature to switch target on the moving character. To avoid that a bard can use teleportation to move around.

    Musicianship Bonus:

    With the changes to the Musicianship skill you are rewarded now with a success bonus to Provocation, Targeted Peacemaking and Discordance of 1% per point you have above 100 in Musicianship. For example: If your Musicianship is at 110 your chance to provoke, target peace or discord a creature is increased by 10%.


    The provocation skill is useful around groups of creatures. It allows a bard to incite beasts into a frenzy and encourage them to attack other creatures in their vicinity. It has to be kept in mind though that a failed attempt results in the creature attacking the bard.

    To use the provocation skill

    - use skill Provocation
    - target the first creature, then
    - target the creature you want it to fight

    Since Publish 16 Provocation is no longer target- but difficulty-based. That means that some creatures are more difficult to provoke than others whereas this difficulty rating is based on the creature’s attributes, skills, and special abilities. To get the correct skill necessary to successfully provoke a target reduce its base difficulty by 10% (5 points).

    Provocable creatures have different difficulty ratings - you can find them here. Many thanks to Nadya for her work that had this information ready when Age of Shadows shipped! The Difficulty rating is the skill level where a bard has a 50% chance of success to provoke the creature. Minus 25.0 under this skill level the bard has no chance at all and can’t even make an attempt to provoke, at plus 25.0 above the skill level the bard has a guaranteed success and cannot gain skill by provoking this creature. To find out how difficult it is to provoke two creatures onto each other average their difficulty ratings.


    The Peacemaking skill allows a bard to attempt to soothe fighting creatures in the vicinity.

    There are two possible ways of Peacemaking:

    Area mode:

    This is used to attempt to stop all fights in the immediate area:

    - use skill Peacemaking
    - target yourself

    If successful, the bard will temporarily halt all combat in that area. You have to keep in mind though that - other than before Publish 16 - the creature will still have the aggressor flag and you will auto-defend (and with that break the peace effect) when you come too close. To avoid that it is advisable to tab in and out of war mode.

    Targeted mode:

    To stop a specific creature from fighting

    - use skill Peacemaking
    - target the creature

    Like Provocation Targeted Peacemaking is difficulty based. To get the correct skill necessary to successfully target peace a target reduce its base difficulty by 20% (10 points).

    If successful, the targeted creature will stop fighting. Thereafter, until the effect is ended per standard rules, whenever the affected creature is attacked for whatever reason tries to start fighting, there is a chance (based on bard skill and creature difficulty) that the creature will instead return to a peaceful state. Over time, the Peacemaking effect weakens, so eventually the creature will break the effect no matter how skilled the bard and how weak the creature.
    While this ability does not guarantee lack of retaliation from a monster, it does make it a much easier opponent to handle.
    A player can be affected by this ability only in area-affect mode (and this also counts only for warriors since it lets them drop out of war mode).


    This skill is used to weaken a creature. Like Provocation and Targeted Peacemaking Discordance is difficulty based. To get the correct skill necessary to successfully discord a target reduce its base difficulty by 20% (10 points).

    To use the skill

    - use skill discordance
    - target the creature

    If successful, your target will lose a percentage of its skills and stats. The percentage lost is dependant on the bard’s Discordance skill. For instance, at 50.0 skill, the target loses 10% from all stats and skills; and at 100.0 skill the target loses 20% from all stats and skills. Once the effect wears off, the target's skill and stats will return to normal. (Does not affect player characters.)

    Discordance will also make a creature easier to provoke.

    Success Formula:

    The success formula for barding skills is:

    50 + 2 * (barding skill - barding difficulty after modifiers

    How to find out your success rate:

    • Look up a creature’s base difficulty on this chart
    • Apply all bard difficulty modifiers (e.g. Musicianship bonus over 100, exceptional or Slayer instrument bonus)
    • Subtract the barding difficulty from the barding skill
    • Multiply the result of the subtraction by 2
    • Add 50 to the result of the multiplication
    • Result is the % success

    To find all of these numbers in a quick and east-to-use format, check out the Stratics Barding Success Calculator
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