Bard is a playable character in Crypt of the Necrodancer.
Bard is unlocked by default.
Rules and Restrictions
Bard begins with a Shovel, Dagger, Bomb, and two heart containers.
"Bard" represents the bard Octavian prior to his discovery of the Golden Lute and subsequent transformation into the Necrodancer. Since he predates the Necrodancer's curse, Bard has no need to follow a rhythm, leaving him free to act whenever he likes. Enemies will act immediately after he does so. Because Bard has no rhythmic restrictions, the Heart Transplant and Shrine of Rhythm are not available to him. He has access to all other items and shrines.
Stages will never time out, and songs will loop indefinitely. This makes trapdoors and exit stairs the only possible way for Bard to advance in the game.
Bard plays almost identically to Cadence, but with no rhythmic obligation. This allows for both blistering fast movement and slow cautious planning whenever the situation calls for it. Due to his comparatively small health pool, knowing when to slow down and take time to strategize is especially important. If a situation arises in which a "beat" needs to be skipped, Bard can simply attempt to use an item or spell slot he doesn't have - this will cause the enemies to move without him acting (at the cost of a loss of multiplier).
Care must be taken not to become trapped by hidden bounce trap rooms, as this will soft-lock the game in most cases due to the lack of time limits. In these cases, the player will typically have to restart the run or exit to the menu, forfeiting their current score or deathless streak.
If the player has a bomb and enough health or defense to survive the blast, placing and exploding a bomb will allow the player to leave the trap.