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D&D 5E First ever D&D Campaign - Could use some build help please!

WASDHammer

Villager
For background, oddly enough, I have never played a D&D campaign before but am not new to D&D. My first experience has actually been as a fledgling DM. My kids took an interest so I jumped into DM'ing so they could have fun and I could spend more time with them. Now I want to try it out for myself.

Anyways, just joined my first group and could use some build help as I have little practical experience of what works well and what doesn't. My party consists of the following:

Cleric (Peace), Fighter/Warlock gish, Order of Stars Druid, Monk (all level 3).

I am currently a lvl 3 Lore Bard (Str: 8/Dex: 16/Con: 14/Int: 8/Wis: 12/Cha: 17). Looking at the party make-up, it looks like we are covered from a frontline perspective, but could use a bit more ranged damage (again I'm new so could be completely wrong). Wondering what I should be considering as I think out my build that balances having fun without being too underpowered. I like the idea of playing a crowd controller but would like to have some bite if needed (strictly ranged, since frontline is covered). I have been reading a ton and seems like there are some viable options:

1) Stick to pure Lore Bard with level 4 ASI. Get full caster spell progression and take fireball at level 6 (with Counterspell), along with Animate Objects later. Feels a bit weak since Fireball feels a tad situational and only has so many slots that I don't want to waste if I'm using my concentration spells. Perhaps take a feat at level 4 (Fey Touched) to allow Misty Step for some emergency exit while the +1 Cha allows me to still gain some ASI progress.

2) Dip 1 level into Hexblade Warlock at level 4. I was considering doing this at my next level (to create a Lore 3/Hexblade 1 MC). If I decided to take a 2nd level HB, do so after Bard level 6. Figured this could give me some more durability, while providing me a consistent and scaling damage cantrip in Eldritch Blast, while minimizing the spell progression loss.

3) Stick to pure Lore Bard with Magic Initiate or Spell Sniper Feat at level 4. With MI, would pick up Eldritch Blast, Booming Blade for close calls (rather than using a Rapier), and Armor of Agathys or Hex (was thinking AofA so I could keep my concentration available for bard spells). Likewise, could just use Eldritch Blast with Spell Sniper to make the EB a near automatic hit vs. doing significant damage. Of course, here I would be keeping my Lore Bard spell progression, while missing out on the ASI. But am I OK waiting until level 8 to ASI to Cha: 19? I figure the EB will get a ton of low level usage so was not worth waiting.

In any case I could use the guidance, as I am completely torn on these options and which would work best based on the party we have assembled. Thanks in advance for your help!
 

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WASDHammer

Villager
As of now, my backstory is that I am a sort of information broker/keeper of secrets, who has learned a great deal about disguise and how to manipulate the mind of others to achieve his goals. My DM has allowed me to bake in a personal quest where I am hunting down an ancient artifact (a dwarven crown) that allows the wielder to influence the minds of his target. Should I decide to dip Hexblade, this quest potentially allows me to use that item as the source of an ancient spirit from the shadowfell that gives the item it's powers and allows me to create a pact to wield it. But just as easily could have it be just a traditional magical item if I stick to Bard.
 


Zardnaar

Legend
If you take magic initiate you can pick up Eldritch blast, another cantrip and a lvl 1 warlock spell.

At lvl 6 you get hex and fireball as your magic secrets. Blaster bard!!.
 

GMMichael

Guide of Modos
. . . My party consists of the following:

Cleric (Peace), Fighter/Warlock gish, Order of Stars Druid, Monk (all level 3).

I am currently a lvl 3 Lore Bard (Str: 8/Dex: 16/Con: 14/Int: 8/Wis: 12/Cha: 17). Looking at the party make-up, it looks like we are covered from a frontline perspective, but could use a bit more ranged damage (again I'm new so could be completely wrong). Wondering what I should be considering as I think out my build that balances having fun without being too underpowered. . .
"Use a bit more ranged damage?" Do you already know what you'll be fighting, or are you shooting for the well-rounded party? Don't worry about the latter, because it's very unlikely that you'll come up against a well-rounded opponent...

I guess go with option 1, because bard + fireball = rockstar (with stage pyro).
 

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