Male and female bards playing instruments in Dark and Darker
Image via Ironmace

Dark and Darker: Best Bard Builds Guide

These best Bard builds will not only provide effective support for your team but also make Bard a good solo class in Dark and Darker.

The Bard class in Dark and Darker is, first and foremost, a support class with access to a number of instruments that buff you and your allies while debuffing your enemies. Our guide will provide you with the best Bard builds in Dark and Darker, including the best perks, skills, stats, armor, weapons, and music.

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Best Solo Bard Build in Dark and Darker

Best Solo Bard Perks

The solo build requires more focus on the damage than the support when playing in a team. That’s why I’ve chosen Rapier Mastery as the main perk for this build in combination with the Rapier weapon.

  • Rapier Mastery: When a rapier is equipped, your weapon damage increases by +2, and your action speed increases by an additional +5%.
  • Charismatic Performance: Upgrades your performance from “good” to “perfect.”
  • War Song: If your performance was successful, your weapon damage and that of your allies within 4.5 meters increase by +3 for 6 seconds.
  • Fermata: Gain +5 of the Resourcefulness stat.

Best Solo Bard Skills

As a solo Bard, it’s important to increase your music memory as well as be able to prevent enemies from grouping up around you.

  • Music Memory: Stores up to 5 sheets of music.
  • Dissonance: Makes an unpleasant sound, which blocks all enemies within its area of effect and silences them for 3 seconds.

Best Solo Bard Stats

As I already mentioned, the damage is more important in this solo build, so I’ve bumped the Strength stat to 20, as well as Knowledge for more efficient spellcasting.

  • Strength: 20
  • Agility: 15
  • Will: 10
  • Knowledge: 20
  • Resourcefulness: 10
  • Health: 100
  • Weight Limit: 0
  • Spell Memory: 18
  • Utility Effectiveness: 0

Best Solo Bard Gear and Weapons

When it comes to the choice of gear, you may craft some of the pieces with higher stats. But I’ve chosen the default items with the main focus on the Knowledge and Resourcefulness stats.

  • Head: Feathered Hat
  • Chest: Troubadour Outfit
  • Legs: Leather Chausses
  • Hands: Rawhide Gloves
  • Feet: Low Boots
  • Back: Radiant Cloak

Since this build is designed around the Rapier Mastery perk, the obvious choice of weapon is Rapier in the main hand and Buckler for your off-hand.

  • Rapier
  • Buckler

Best Solo Bard Music

If you’ve chosen the Music Memory skill for your build, then you should be able to extend your music sheet with, if not all, at least some of these songs:

  • Rousing Rhythms: Increases all attributes by +2/+2/+2 for 30/60/90 seconds.
  • Beats of Alacrity: Grants +5/+7/+9 additional move speed for 30/60/120 seconds.
  • Ballad of Courage: Grants 5/7/10 increased physical power for 30/60/120 seconds.
  • Harmonic Shield: Grants a buff that lasts for 60/90/120 seconds, giving a +15 armor rating and +15 magic resistance.
  • Aria of Alacrity: Grants a 4%/6%/8% bonus to your action speed for 30/60/120 seconds.
  • Shriek of Weakness: Debuffs all nearby enemies, lowering their physical power by -3/-4/-5 and armor rating by -10/-20/-30 for 6/12/18 seconds.
Bard playing Rousing Rhythms in Dark and Darker.
Image via Ironmace

Best Team Bard Build in Dark and Darker

Best Team Bard Perks

Bard should be an effective support character, making his team stronger, but you shouldn’t forget to balance his own drawbacks. That’s why these four perks were selected to make Bard both an excellent supporter and a decent solo character:

  • Charismatic Performance: Upgrades a good performance to a perfect performance.
  • Superior Dexterity: 50% faster switching time between items.
  • Wanderer’s Luck: Increases Luck by +100 to find high-quality items.
  • War Song: Increases Weapon Damage of allies by +3.

Best Team Bard Skills

Bard strongly relies on his instruments and his ability to play melodies off of the music sheets to improve the gameplay of both his allies and himself. That’s why I’d strongly recommend picking skills that permit you to store as many music sheets as possible, such as:

  • Music Memory: Store up to 4 sheets of music.
  • Music Memory 2: Store up to 4 sheets of music.

Best Team Bard Stats

It’s no secret that Bard is a vulnerable class, and that’s why I’d put all my stat points into Bard’s HP and Agility. But the overall stat distribution for your build should look like this:

  • Strength: 15
  • Agility: 20
  • Will: 10
  • Knowledge: 18
  • Resourcefulness: 12
  • Health: 100
  • Weight Limit: 0
  • Spell Memory: 18
  • Utility Effectiveness: 0

Best Team Bard Gear and Weapons

Bard’s gear shouldn’t be too heavy, but at the same time, it should protect you from heavy damage, although your movement speed may suffer a bit. Here’s what I suggest:

  • Head: Feathered Hat
  • Chest: Regal Gambeson
  • Legs: Leather Chausses
  • Hands: Riveted Gloves
  • Feet: Heavy Boots

Weapons, on the other hand, can be quite heavy and deal a lot of damage both at melee and range, including:

  • Falchion is an excellent close-to-mid-range one-handed sword that deals 30 Slash damage. You can also improve it with the Kuma’s Fang attachment, which grants +15 Dark magic damage, which is really useful against bosses. Falchion typically drops from Skeleton Guardsmen, Demon Bats, or Ghost King elite enemies.
  • Crossbow will work like a charm for this build’s two-handed ranged weapon, dealing 39 damage. There’s no slot for improvement like with Falchion, but you’ll be using it more rarely than Falchion, so it’s perfectly serviceable as is. This weapon can be found inside ordinary oak chests or dropped by Mimics and Ghost King elites.

Best Team Bard Music

Finally, it’s time to decide what kind of music you want to play for your party as a Bard. You can choose between four types of instruments and add 10 different music sheets. So here’s what I recommend to fit the given Bard build:

  • Drums:
    • Accelerando: Increases the speed of movement of your own and your allies.
    • Rousing Rhythms: Increases all attributes of your allies.
  • Flute:
    • Shriek of Weakness: Reduces physical power and armor rating of nearby enemies.
    • Unchained Harmony: Opens all locked non-special doors and containers.
  • Lute:
    • Chaotic Discord: Forces monsters to attack the closest target.
    • Lament of Languor: Reduces speed of movement of nearby enemies.
    • Song of Silence: Prevents casters from casting magic.
  • Lyre:
    • Ballad of Courage: Grants +10% bonus to physical power.
    • Harmonic Shield: Grants +40 bonus to armor rating and magic resist.
    • Tranquility: Restores 2 HP per second.

That’s everything you need to know about the best Bard build in Dark and Darker. Stay tuned for more content on our Dark and Darker guide hub.

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Serhii Patskan
Serhii is the Writer at GameSkinny. He's been writing for GameSkinny since 2015. Before that, he's been writing for various outlets and playing video games, which eventually turned into a passion. The video games that have contributed the most to his enthusiasm for writing about this industry are Magic: The Gathering, Dark Souls, and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.