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Bard Build Guide by aqualadgcal

Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author aqualadgcal

[S6] (Patch 6.6) Bard, Roaming Support/ Pseudo-Jungler

aqualadgcal Last updated on March 23, 2016
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.


Natural Talent
Bounty Hunter
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Ferocity: 0

Dangerous Game

Cunning: 18

Tough Skin
Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Resolve: 12

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Introduction to the Magical Bard

LoL Micro Analyst "Awkwah" here, and this is one of the guides I am putting out as Bard is one of my favorite champions to play in Ranked. This is for the Champion Bard, the Wandering Caretaker. He is a new support for the League and is nothing but interesting. He is unlike most supports and is expected to wander all over the map to "Care" for lanes and grab chimes. This seems simple enough, but I believe there is some ground rules that need to be found before the care-taking begins.

Here is a the Champion Spotlight which has a lot of the same ideas I have about Bard:

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Some Ground Rules for Bard

OK, I am going to set some ground rules first thing.

-Wander does not mean first thing leave your ADC alone all game. If you want to lose, that's how you lose.

-The reason to roam goes to two ideas:

    1) You roam when your lane is winning and has an ADC that can survive on their own.

    2) You roam to help the jungler with situations that are between the closest two lanes (ex. the jungle between bottom and mid lane)

-I will treat this support as a pseudo-jungler/ support as he is roaming, similar to the jungler. He will help in some ganks, but not all of them as he is still a support that needs to help the ADC

-Don't expect to do much damage at any point except for VERY late game (because of chimes collecting with the meep powers), I won't recommend any AP items on this champ as he has three moves that scale off of it with low ratios for each of them.

-You may not do much damage, you should have a HUGE impact on every team fight that happens with the kit you have. Practice with Bard to understand his kit more, practice will always improve your game (as practice helps with understanding all champions).

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Pros / Cons


+ Great Roaming Potential
+ Game Changing Ultimate Tempered Fate
+ Nifty Escapes and Engages with Magical Journey
+ Gets stronger as the game progresses with Meeps
Bard has some really great roams all possible to his passive Traveler's Call. Just roam to collect the meeps and help engage with the jungler. Go in with Magical Journey to really get a crazy gank going, or if the gank went bad just Magical Journey back out. Its a really safe move for both. The ultimate of Tempered Fate is just insane, a Zhonya's Hourglass effect for every possible thing within it.


- Tempered Fate can lose you fights if incorrectly placed
- ADC has to be ahead or able to survive on their own for Bard to roam safely
- Very team oriented champion
Bard is extremely complicated to use his abilities correctly, as he can lose fights such as an ill-communicated Tempered Fate. You can also forget about roaming if your ADC is behind or can't survive on their own. I would never recommend Bard for Solo/Duo que, as he needs to be completely clear to the whole team of his intentions during team fights.

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Runes and Reasoning


Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed

Greater Mark of Precision

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist

As for runes, I have looked at different ideas. Movement speed is always nice to fulfill your role to roam and help out. With that idea I have these runes:

Greater Mark of Hybrid Penetration:
This is for your meeps deal that extra oomph with each hit, and your Q benefits off it too.

Greater Seal of Armor:
Gotta protect yourself from that ADC who will be poking you here and there.

Greater Glyph of Scaling Magic Resist: Scaling because you shouldn't be facing too much AP harass early on, later game the scaling helps with the full on team fights

Greater Quintessence of Movement Speed:
The help you move super duper fast around the whole map, to gank/ apply pressure/ collect chimes

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Items for the Roam

Items, this is where I have spent most of my time with Bard. He seems interesting as he needs to be moving everywhere, and he needs to be able to survive. Over time I recognized he needs a good mix of both.

Spellthief's Edge:

The new Frost Queen's Claim is now the go to item since the support item changes. The slow and the AP within the support item makes it synergize with Bard}'s kit really well. It also helps with peel or chasing down low health enemies.

Boots of Swiftness:

These boots are probably the best if you are going to roam a lot (Reminder to only roam if you and your ADC feels comfortable with it). You will get to move faster in the jungle for collecting chimes and converging onto the enemy for ganks. The Captain upgrade for your teammates to roam along side you, most notably the jungler.

Ruby Sightstone:

As most supports buy this item, I feel as if this is a EXTREMELY great item that can really be used on Bard. He is roaming for chimes, so why not just ward while you're in key locations too.

Zeke's Harbinger:

Zeke's Harbinger is what I believe a perfect fit for Bard. The armor and mana is beyond what Bard needs in the bottom lane. You can tank ADC autos better, you slow their attack speed with the passive, Cool Down Reduction for some of your longer cool-downs, and now more mana for yourself to spam Cosmic Binding or have more Caretaker's Shrine for your team. This item is great right now, as you can snowball with and adc with two full items. 100% Crit, nuff said.

Locket of the Iron Solari:

This is one you have to watch, as your jungler may build this item too. I like the idea of the Locket on Bard because it frees up an item for the Jungler to be more of a tank or add the extra damage item. It helps lanes that you are ganking with the bonus Magic Resist (So mid lane mostly, as it would be helpful there most. Minimal help with any AP damage in bottom lane, but it still helps!). Great for team fights as you will be helping any tanks soak up magic damage, and you got that active shield that can be soaking up more damage.

Mikael's Crucible:

Now so much Mana Regeneration it's nuts. But that isn't the key component of the item, it is the active. The cleanse and heal effect can save any champion that is stuck in a pickle, mostly your ADC as he will have crowd control hitting him bot lane a lot because of pesky supports and junglers.

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Skills and Level Order

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Bard has the standard four skills and a passive. Out of these, three scale off of AP, and two deal damage. You can say his kit seems a little crazy, as he seems he would be a powerful AP caster. This is nowhere near the case, as I believe his ratios are too low on his abilities to abuse his skills with some AP as a support (Don't try a full AP build in mid lane either, pretty rough laning).

Man, doesn't he seems like a piece of poop now? But wait, there's more! He has a great heal, a one-way portal that can be abused for some great plays, and even a BIG ZHONYAS that works on more than just champions.

Passive: Traveler's Call

Now this passive has two things, tells you about the chimes to collect and the meeps powers. Lets talk about chimes, as these are extremely cool pickups for Bard. As you roam, there are chimes. Pick them up if you're not in a hurry anywhere (such as supporting your ADC). Seriously, the best time to pick them up is when you're warding. Just don't make this your main focus the whole game, chimes are important but not that important. The meeps are the second part of your passive, they make up to 4 consecutive autos deal more damage. Your meeps are powered up by your amount of chimes you have collected (Every 5 chimes equal a power-up). Here is how the meeps work:

Spoiler: Click to view

So collecting these bad boys sure helps into the late game, just don't blow off this passive. I would never use this on minions, only auto attack enemy champions and epic monsters. These meeps deal a lot of damage, and you don't really need to farm as you are support.

Q: Cosmic Binding

Your Cosmic Binding is your only damage skill that is an active. It can activate one of two crowd control effects: A 60% slow on a single target for 1.2 to 1.8 seconds, or a stun on one to two enemies for 1.2 to 1.8 seconds. This is how you would engage any enemy, a Q. If you hit someone with the Q, you automatically get the 60% slow. To get the stun, you have to hit one of two things: Another enemy unit (champion or minion), or you can hit a wall. Ideally you want to stun two champions in one, but you can also focus down one champion next to walls to assist someone in getting a kill.

W: Caretaker's Shrine

Welcome to ARAM health shrines. You now own the power to leave a pack in a lane for another person to use. If it sits for at least 10 seconds, then the heal power is increased. Not only does it heal you, it gives a short boost of movement speed. This means two possible actions can be used for these: Drop one for quick movement speed to have you or your fellow teammate get out of a tight situation, or keep one back next to turret to have when you need a nice boost of health. Just make sure your enemies don't walk over them, as it will destroy the shrine.

E: Magical Journey

The one way portal, seems simple enough right? But there are so many plays that can be made, from quick travel times to extreme baits. Personally, I enjoy the fact that this portal has no limit on length. There are a few noticeable portals that can be made to quickly travel the terrain really fast. Just remember that enemies can join you too in the portal, so be safe when used by enemies or use it well to bait for a kill.

R: Tempered Fate

THE GOLD MOVE, FOR EVERYONE! This is seriously a game changer for the whole champion pool. Not only can you put champions in stasis (similar to the Zhonya's Hourglass active), you can use it to: protect your turret, disable enemies turrets, and delay/protect baron or dragon! This is going to be interesting how pros work around this ultimate as it is semi-global. Just don't troll too much with this.

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The Phases of the Game

Early Game

Bard early game should defiantly consist of staying with your ADC. I wouldn’t recommend roaming till you are level 3 so you at least have a point in each skill. Once you do you can roam when your ADC is safe (can safely farm and has a health shrine at their tower) and tower are in a safe position. Once your lane goes back to being pushed against you, you should go back and make sure that your lane is in a good position to roam again. As you are roaming; collect your chimes, ward if you have a Sightstone, and maybe hit a gank up or two with the jungler between your lane and middle.

Mid Game

Bard should have the Boots of Mobility and the Sightstone. You can still roam when your ADC and tower are safe. Continue to collect chimes, place your wards, and apply pressure in the lanes. Towers should start to fall around now, so keep an eye on the lanes so you can help if an objective needs attention. Your ultimate is also up so you will be using it to: delay dragon, protect your towers/teammates, setting up the perfect gank, or disable your enemies’ towers for a dive. If your ADC is completely ahead and has no problem with being alone (so don’t if they aren’t fine with you running off a lot), then roam with your jungler. This is where the pseudo-jungler idea comes in, as you are now running a duo jungle-like composition. You will now help with every gank (with Magical Journey if possible) and help him clear his camps faster, all while you’re collecting your chimes and warding. With this, your ADC is now solo farming gaining experience faster than the two he may be facing in lane. The enemy support may roam too so you got to keep an eye on that. The team may start to group up a lot more for objectives, so be there to heal and help them engage with Magical Journey and Cosmic Binding or escape with Magical Journey.

Late Game

Alright this is 5v5 time, Bard in teamfights seems a little strange. You got some tank stats, so you’re thinking front line? NO, you protect da carrires. Your team should engage with a portal to an area, disengage with it, or just move quickly around the map. Drop Caretaker's Shrine near the back lines if you are dancing with the other team. Now is a great time to use your Tempered Fate on Baron if the enemy is trying to secure it, as you can delay it just long enough for a smite steal or setup for a fight. Don’t forget to get those autos off to deal the Meep damage and CC within the fights.

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The Updating of Bard

I plan to keep a section stating the buffs and nerfs over every patch for Bard.


Q - Cosmic Binding

DAMAGE 75/100/145/180/215 magic damage ⇒ 80/120/160/200/240 magic damage
REMOVEDCOSMIC COINCENDENCE Cosmic Binding can no longer tether to unusual units such as Jarvan IV's Demacian Standard, Syndra's Dark Sphere, Jayce's Acceleration Gate, and Wards

E - Magical Journey

COOLDOWN 26/24/22/20/18 seconds ⇒ 20/19/18/17/16 seconds

SPIRITED AWAY Clicking on a Magical Journey portal is now more forgiving
TRAVEL GUIDE Allies that go on a Magical Journey will grant Bard an assist on their kills for a short time afterwards
MAGICAL EQUALITY Clones (such as those created by Shaco, LeBlanc, Mordekaiser and Yorick) can now be commanded to take a Magical Journey

R - Tempered Fate

TEMPERED MONSTERS Neutral Monsters will no longer have their health reset while under stasis



BASE ARMOR 21 ⇒ 25

Passive - Traveler's Call

MEEP RESPAWN TIME 12/11/10/9/8 seconds (with chimes) ⇒ 10/9/8/7/6 seconds (with chimes)
CHIME MANA RESTORE 15 + 8% missing mana ⇒ 12% of Bard's maximum mana

Q - Cosmic Binding

BASE DAMAGE 80/120/160/200/240 (+0.5 ability power) ⇒ 80/125/170/215/260 (+0.65 ability power)


Passive - Traveler's Call

SAFE AND SOUND Chimes will avoid spawning in the enemy jungle before 5 minutes
EXPERIENCE PER CHIME 20 flat XP ⇒ 20 + 1 XP per minute (after 5 minutes)


W - Caretaker's Shrine

COST 100/105/110/115/120 mana ⇒ 90 mana at all ranks

E - Magical Journey

COOLDOWN 20/19/18/17/16 seconds ⇒ 18/17/16/15/14 seconds


Passive - Traveler's Call

CHIME SPAWN: Chimes now begin spawning at the 50 second mark ⇒ 35 second mark


Passive - Traveler's Call

BASE MEEP RECHARGE RATE 10 seconds ⇒ 8 seconds

W - Caretaker's Shrine

MINIMUM RATIO 0.2 ability power ⇒ 0.3 ability power
MAXIMUM RATIO 0.45 ability power ⇒ 0.6 ability power


Passive - Traveler's Call

AREA-OF-MEEP Meeps now additionally hit in a 150 radius around the primary target (in addition to the cone damage) once Bard unlocks the cone attack Meep upgrade

Guide Top


As Bard you are meant to set up plays, control objectives with your ultimate, and sustain your teammates. This is a very high skill cap champion, as he has some great skills to master. I hope your time on the rift with Bard, with or against, is enjoyable. Just try not to troll too hard you fellow Bard mains in the rising