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City of Nine Stars -- City of Twilight

Game Master therealthom

Council of Thieves


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Male Human

I've always enjoyed playing wizards myself. Actually, this rogue here is probably the second time I play a non-spellcaster; the first was a fighter/rogue. So, it's either wizards or lightly-armored agile melee-types. Though I'm itching to get the chance to play an eldritch knight first chance I get! *Grins*


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Now that is interesting, Neil!

I can see how that works, in his head - he is iconoclastic, but about the current leaders rather than the system. Problem is Waifrin is not going to let him forget what he said about commoners not being educated enough to make decisions, until he takes it back.

He may have to come to terms with different governmental systems sooner than you plan, because Waifrin is very detirmined.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Well, we'll see how it all works out, Dabbler. The course of this adventure path isn't designed to change all of Cheliax from a tyrannical empire to a democracy. And we can't exactly change Westcrown in that fashion either without bringing the wrath of House Thrune and their superior resources down on our heads.

So, it's really all just bits and pieces of each character's psyche and how they view the world-at-large. That's enough for me. It serves as the basis from which I can roleplay Akorian...but not necessarily as the basis for how the overall adventure gets steered.

Still, any reason for continued dialogue between Waifrin and Akorian is good for the game. :-)

Osirion

Some dude

I like that description of the church of Milani. A bit fuzzy on the details of what comes *after* the great revolution, but well-intentioned.


Dabbler wrote:

No, I was included.

LOL, but isn't Chaotic requesting freedom for all? And if you have no say in your destiny, you are not free (see Waifrin's spoilered comment in her last post ...). Waifrin associates lack of authority with lack of freedom, so the society Akorian wants is Lawful Good, not Chaotic Good.

Marius is a convert to the Andoran way of thinking his 18 months there have instilled in him a fervour for democratic change that he will not set aside for anything..if anything he is the most revolutionary of the party...because he wants nothing more than a full scale revolt against House Thrune and the church of Asmodeus..a revolt that would coincide off course with Andoran's armies crossing the border.

And he's going to punch Akorian in the mouth before this adventure is over

Osirion

Some dude

Eh, Akorian is providing a vital service, keeping this otherwise independent-minded party on the adventure choo-choo. If it wasn't for him, the entire game would consist of the NPC Janiven bossing us around, and us disagreeing with her. Since she's got a PC agreeing with her, the 'social gaming contract' (should you believe in such a thing) encourages the rest of us to play along with him, not against him.

Right now, Akorian is the only reason this adventure hasn't fallen off the tracks, although he's got a thankless task. :)

I could probably squeeze another train metaphor in, but I think that joke has left the station.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Yep, it's steaming away down the tracks and out of sight ...

... whistling along to a Welsh choir, for those that get the joke ...


Male Mostly human
NSpicer wrote:

*Ahem*!!!

I believe you left out the most important character in this poignant tale! ;-P

{sigh} ... and Akorian.

Cleric's can't adventure with 'em, can't adventure without 'em (unless you have a wand of clw, that is).


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Yes, it's true, we only want him for his wand ...

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Hey...easy on the wand!

Spoiler:
And clearly, I need to look into making both a wand of cure serious wounds AND a wand of bestow curse so I can dispense each one's power depending on who's on Akorian's good side on any given day.

"Ohhh...I'm sorry! You got injured? Here. Let me lower your Con score a little further for you."

:->


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

At last he's getting the right idea about how to treat injured Hellknights ...

Osirion

Some dude

Bestow Curse is a *glorious* spell. Capture members of that book-burning Hellknight order?

Curse - whenever you burn a book, or cause a book to be burned, you suffer burning pain, as if it was you on fire. (game effect, Fort save at the curses DC or take 1d6 nonlethal damage each round until the book is consumed or extinguished, treat as sickened from the pain during those rounds, whether you save or not)

Curse - you feel a compulsion to restore or replace every book that you have burned (or ordered burned), on any day that you do not actively work towards that goal (even if it is just by hiring a scribe to create a new copy of a book that you burned, from another copy that you've purchased), you will suffer constant distraction (treat as sickened) as words and images from the books you've burned swim around in your consciousness, even haunting your dreams while you sleep (do not heal overnight, due to poor rest, although you can still prepare spells). Every time you replace a book, through whatever means, those particular words and images stop haunting your dreams and distracting you during your days, and you experience a day of respite from the maddening images. Note that the words and images are indistinct, this curse doesn't give you knowledge of the contents of every book you've ever burned, and, depending on how well you paid attention during your book-burning days, you may have to take extraordinary measures just to learn the names and titles of some of the tomes you must replace to free yourself from this curse.

Curse - all written works more than twenty-five letters appear to be on fire to your eyes, and attempting to read them will prove unsuccessful and also give you the dazzled condition for one round after viewing (so you can walk down the street and the sign over the Dancing Drake tavern won't cause you to go blind, but attempting to read a proclamation will leave your eyes watering). For every book you have destroyed (or ordered destroyed) and then restored or replaced, you can read both that book, and one other book of your choice, without suffering the curse. (So a Wizard working for this order who suffers this curse will have to replace at least one book before he can even read his spellbook again!) Sadly this curse won't protect you from magically trapped writing...


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

So perfect for the Order of the Rack ...

Osirion

Some dude
Dabbler wrote:
So perfect for the Order of the Rack ...

Yeah, murdering people, consorting with fiends, dragging people out of their homes, that's all standard bad-guy fare.

But burning books? These guys gotta go!


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Dead people can become martyrs, the oppressed can turn, and people will hate you for consorting with fiends ... but without ideas, they can't make anything better in the world. If they don't know that things can be better, they are less likely to try and make them better, and if they don't understand a better government can exist than the one they have, they will never be able to replace it. As a priest of Milani, Akorian will understand that what the Order of the Rack is doing by burning books is destroying hope for a better world.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

I take it as a grave affront that you would even consider me capable of making my NPCs burn books. For shame!


You don't Tim..the Evil paizo staffers do...lol


Hi folks! I think I'm going to bow out of this game. I haven't found the story very gripping so far and the next adventure (putting on a play?) doesn't sound like much of an improvement. Enjoy the rest of the game! I might follow along from time to time.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

I'm sorry to see you going, Hogarth - I have to say for myself I'm riveted to how this will develop and where it will go, but if you feel that Mother Vangelis isn't caught up enough in things, I guess that's the way things go - to be fair, she's an ordinary 'gater-wrestlin' mom getting caught up in a nascent revolution with some people of dubious ethics - Waifrin and Marius probably come across to her as dangerously psychotic and out of control. I think she does stand out as the only one without an axe to grind with the Hellknights and the House of Thrune, which maybe makes her less heavily committed; perhaps if something ocured to make her more involved with the rebellion, that could pull her back in?


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
Gr4ys wrote:

... its been great fun to follow the exploits of Mother, Marius, Waifin, Zara and Raven. ...

It's credit to you all that even a complete outsider can just read and enjoy it. Well done.

Gr4ys, sorry I haven't replied before. Thanks for your kind words and for following the thread. The players have really made the story so far. Their interactions with each other have been splendid.

hogarth, the decision is of course yours, but before you go, you should know I'll be cutting out the play mostly. I started this because I really like urban adventures, unfortunately I admit that I too am having a little trouble immersing myself in the story-line as written. This AP has some great dungeon crawls, but getting from one to the other is a little awkward and to my mind it hasn't offered the kind of role-play interaction with NPCs that city adventures should. Modifiying the position of the play in the story-line is part of my plan to change that. I'll also offer you the same deal I offered Set, if you think it's how Mother fits in, you may scrap her and try again. Please, think it over and let me know for sure.


I too had a problem with the story line as written..the play while it could work nicely in a table top face to face situation just isn't going to work in PbP a few dice rolls and much copy and paste..it's a pity that the combined talents of Messrs Logue and Pett couldn't have given us something with more meat in it.

I trust Tim to find us some other path to the Mayors good graces..and to find some way of getting us the fame points(which are going to be important in the end game probably)


therealthom wrote:
hogarth, the decision is of course yours, but before you go, you should know I'll be cutting out the play mostly. I started this because I really like urban adventures, unfortunately I admit that I too am having a little trouble immersing myself in the story-line as written. This AP has some great dungeon crawls, but getting from one to the other is a little awkward and to my mind it hasn't offered the kind of role-play interaction with NPCs that city adventures should. Modifiying the position of the play in the story-line is part of my plan to change that. I'll also offer you the same deal I offered Set, if you think it's how Mother fits in, you may scrap her and try again. Please, think it over and let me know for sure.

I suspect the game will be better off with a player who's enthustiastic about the story (it should be easy enough to find one) rather than a player who's just not that interested. So I'll bow out gracefully.

Good luck with the game!


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
hogarth wrote:


I suspect the game will be better off with a player who's enthustiastic about the story (it should be easy enough to find one) rather than a player who's just not that interested. So I'll bow out gracefully.

Good luck with the game!

Thanks, hogarth. See you 'round.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
DM Wellard wrote:

I too had a problem with the story line as written..the play while it could work nicely in a table top face to face situation just isn't going to work in PbP a few dice rolls and much copy and paste..it's a pity that the combined talents of Messrs Logue and Pett couldn't have given us something with more meat in it.

I trust Tim to find us some other path to the Mayors good graces..and to find some way of getting us the fame points(which are going to be important in the end game probably)

Wellard! Good to hear from you. I was getting worried. I'm glad you brought up fame points. For those of you who don't know -- they are a construct of the AP. Basically when you publicly do good heroic stuff you win fame points which will help you somehow in the final installment. You can also lose fame points for messing up, whether by failing to meet expectations or actively doing something "bad" as defined by the AP, not me. I suspect that I will tinker with the system once I see how it works (in the last AP installment). Until then I suggest you all take whatever opportunities I give you to be brave and true.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Guys, I'll be very busy at work this week and next. (You can tell I'm busy, I wasn't able to post this til Friday.) So my posting will be slow.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Same from me, Tim. I've got a bunch of RPG Superstar items to review in the next couple of days. I'm also down with a cold right now, so it's slow going.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
Dabbler wrote:

Okies, I will level but assume that I don't gain any new powers or power points until I have rested. The new power I was interested in is:

Spoiler:

Demoralize
Telepathy [Mind-Affecting]
Level: Psion/wilder 1
Display: Mental and olfactory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: 30 ft.
Area: 30-ft.-radius spread centered on you
Duration: 1 min./level
Saving Throw: Will negates
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 1
You fill your enemies with self-doubt. Any enemy in the area that fails its save becomes shaken for the duration of the power. Allies and creatures without an Intelligence score are unaffected.
Augment: For every 2 additional power points you spend, this power’s range and the radius of its area both increase by 5 feet, and the power’s save DC increases by 1.


dabbler, sorry I didn't get to this in a timely fashion. I was actually looking for your post on psionic items (which I didn't find) when I found this.

Olfactory display? {b]Well[/b]-- isn't that special?

Shaken: A shaken character takes a –2 penalty on attack rolls, saving throws, skill checks, and ability checks. Shaken is a less severe state of fear than frightened or panicked.

I'll compare it to cause fear, fear, and scare . And look again at the powerpoint system. As ever my first impulse is nerf, NERF, NERF! (We loathe and fear what we don't know.) But I'll try to limit that.


There he goes on about nerfing us again..we are already 2nd level characters with 1st level equpment..what more do you want to stick us with Tim..I can see the point in CoCT..it's a 3.5 AP and the pathfinder characters should be able to handle it even with a bit of power reduction..BUT this is an AP balanced for Pathfinder characters working to RAW...nerfing us here is I fear a recipe for disaster especially given the nature of most of our opponents.

Just a personal feeling...

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

I'm still not worried about it. I think our GM has a pretty good eye on things. This group has absolutely manhandled a fair amount of adversaries so far pretty easily. Only Waifrin came close to going down and we were all on hand with our confiscated potions of cure light wounds and/or channeled healing, if necessary. So, we're getting along fine.

I think Thom's primary concern is introducing a homebrewed, unofficial additional power for a sub-system (psionics) that he already has some reservations about. Waif really toasted that major bad guy during Arael's rescue, and though there's presumably some kind of offset to the kind of psionic power she's able to command, I haven't seen it come to play yet. So, it's hard to judge how psionics meshes with the other baseline Pathfinder RPG class abilities the rest of the PCs have right now. Hence, I think Thom is feeling it out as we go...as he should, really. And, in my opinion, he's kept things rolling very well for a PbP game.

Just my two-cents,
--Neil


therealthom wrote:
I'll compare it to cause fear, fear, and scare . And look again at the powerpoint system. As ever my first impulse is nerf, NERF, NERF! (We loathe and fear what we don't know.) But I'll try to limit that.

If I can add my two cents, I think a closer comparison would be to the spell Doom (save or be shaken). Of course, Doom is a pretty lousy spell, so take that with a grain of salt. :-)

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

It's more like a "mass" doom since it works on a 30-ft. radius spread centered on the psion. That, and you can extend the radius and the DC of the Will save if you spend more power points on it.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Didn't get to it last night, but I'm glad to see everyone is so interested.

Wellard, nerfing is always my first impulse with respect to things I don't know. I haven't used psionics since AD&D and I thought it pretty much sucked then and pushed the game out of whack. My personal experience.

I do recognize my tendency to limit players in terms of unfamiliar abilities, and wealth in general. I will try to ensure that you can always damage combat foes and have a chance on any other checks you might need to make.

I'm always cautious about adding new things to the game. Neil stated my position on this psionics experiment with Waifrin very well above.

hogarth and Neil, thanks for the doom suggestion. I'll peek at that too.

As for your wealth in this game. Yeah, I booted you up to second level without a set of shiny new masterwork gear to go with it. In this case it's the AP. There hasn't been a lot of treasure to give out. I didn't feel like running a bunch of extra encounters in the sewers or artificially loading up the Hellknight armigers with loot.


Male Human

As far as loot goes, we have collected a bit of stuff, though it is mostly cash and potions.

1st Sewer Encounter (3 Goblins):
Nothing

2nd Sewer Encounter (1 Hellknight + 3 Armigers):
25 gp
90 sp
3 vials of pink fluid - CLW [They have been distributed among the group]
1 light crossbow (doves or pigeons carved into the stock) - MW [Akorian has it]
3 light crossbows [They have been distributed among the rebels]
1 longsword (from the Hellknight; Akorian intends to return it in due time) [It has been returned to its owner]
3 longswords
Crossbow bolts [They have been distributed among the rebels]

3rd Sewer Encounter (3 Armigers):
90 sp
2 vials of pink fluid - CLW [They have been distributed among the group]
3 light crossbows [They have been distributed among the rebels]
3 longswords
Crossbow bolts [They have been distributed among the rebels]

Arael’s Rescue:
200 gp
9 vials of pink fluid - CLW
2 lances
5 longswords
6 light crossbows
9 daggers
Crossbow bolts

A bit on the wordy side, I know... :-P


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
F. Castor wrote:

As far as loot goes, we have collected a bit of stuff, though it is mostly cash and potions.

...
A bit on the wordy side, I know... :-P

Brilliant work, sir. I thank you.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Sorry if my post from 7 hours ago was a little snippy. I've reread the post which started this brouhaha and feel it may need some clarification.

First, I apologize to dabbler for not getting to this sooner. I would have missed it all together if I hadn't been looking for his post regarding psionic items. (which, dabbler, I couldn't find. If you could repost it I'd appreciate it.) If anyone has any outstanding questions or issues with leveling please bring them up again.

therealthom wrote:
Dabbler wrote:

Okies, I will level but assume that I don't gain any new powers or power points until I have rested. The new power I was interested in is:

** spoiler omitted **

dabbler, sorry I didn't get to this in a timely fashion. I was actually looking for your post on psionic items (which I didn't find) when I found this.

Olfactory display? {b]Well[/b]-- isn't that special?

Shaken: A shaken character takes a –2 penalty on attack rolls, saving throws, skill checks, and ability checks. Shaken is a less severe state of fear than frightened or panicked.

I'll compare it to cause fear, fear, and scare . And look again at the powerpoint system. As ever my first impulse is nerf, NERF, NERF! (We loathe and fear what we don't know.)

I found the presence of an "olfactory display" in the power stats juvenilely amusing. I responded with a quote from Saturday Night Live.

I quoted the pfsrd on "shaken" to remind myself exactly what the term meant.

I listed what I would benchmark the power against. ( doom was hogarth's excellent suggestion which I will also include in my evaluation. Neil's mass doom would also be excellent if the spell existed.)

Then I wrote "As ever my first impulse is nerf, NERF, NERF! (We loathe and fear what we don't know.)" This is a simple statement of fact, not a declaration of intent. Any fear and loathing references made by me may be attributed to a light and playful mood on my part.

I concluded with "But I'll try to limit that." By which I meant my predisposition to nerf. I understand often is a fault of mine and hope that the cool light of rational thought will constrain an emotional response.

I won't have time to actually look at it tonight but here's the power --

Demoralize
Telepathy [Mind-Affecting]
Level: Psion/wilder 1
Display: Mental and olfactory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: 30 ft.
Area: 30-ft.-radius spread centered on you
Duration: 1 min./level
Saving Throw: Will negates
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 1
You fill your enemies with self-doubt. Any enemy in the area that fails its save becomes shaken for the duration of the power. Allies and creatures without an Intelligence score are unaffected.
Augment: For every 2 additional power points you spend, this power’s range and the radius of its area both increase by 5 feet, and the power’s save DC increases by 1.

And my gut reaction --
Comparable in effect to several 1st-4th level spells. Big, flexible area. Not affecting allies is a huge plus. Would mounts be allies? How does the augmentation ramp up compared to spell usage? I've got to reread how psionic power points work to make a judgement. (At first reading last night I misread the power. Since it listed range I thought you could center the effect up to 30' away + 5 feet per 2 additional points. Another good reason not to go with my gut, but to think about this carefully.)

Osirion

Some dude
F. Castor wrote:

Arael’s Rescue:

200 gp
9 vials of pink fluid - CLW
2 lances
5 longswords
6 light crossbows
9 daggers
Crossbow bolts

A breastplate got added to that after the fact, IIRC (and got buried with the other weapons, to get later, as we couldn't smuggle them into the city at the current time). I'll go back and check.

Edit, not a breastplate, in fact;
"Shanwen, the evil ally burning cleric, had the full plate previously mentioned, a beautiful silver Azmodean holy symbol, and a very nice mace worked with pentagrams and chains."

So, if we can pillage that cache, add;
full plate armor
silver holy symbol of Asmodeus
Masterwork mace (of sinister aspect, hard to fence)


Male Human

Ah, missed that. Thanks Set. I will be adding them on my list.


ok..apologies for what looked like a rant...my initial reading of the post was flawed and it seemed that you were talking about completely nerfing all off us not just Waifrin...

I actually agree that the power seems overly effective.but then like Tim I'm not a great believer in Psionics as Dabbler well knows.

Hopefully we can grab some good loot from the Teiflings which will make up for it.

In addition Tim I wouldn't be that quick to grab a replacement for Mother I think the 5 off us will do just fine


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Sorry I didn't respond earlier, I caught a stomach bug off one of the kids and have been unable to even sit up for any extended period of time (like, two minutes or so!).

Regarding demoralize, I took the range as being the maximum range to effect, in other words it is always centred on the person manifesting the effect, and the 'range' is just the area effected. The display is just the perceivable effect of the power that lets people know it's being used.

As for how psionic power points work compared to vancian magic, there's a comparison I did here if you want a cure for insomnia. Basically, power points work by in effect giving a free 'heighten' to many powers by spending more points to augment them. While this might sound a bit much, the downside is that the powers get no scalability without this (except for minor features like duration and range); for example Waifrin's energy ray does a base 1d6 damage if she only empowers it with one power point, no matter what her level is. If you compare her to a sorcerer, for example, she has far less powers available to choose from and has to spend far more resources to make them work fully. The system of powers and power points are a much better resource management system than a sorcerer or wizard's spells', but in compensation the psionic character gets less resources to manage (at 20th level a sorcerer has 56 spells, a psion 36 powers and a wilder 11 powers, and less power points than the equivalent in spells also).

With regard to Waifrin's wild surge feature, so far she has been very lucky - every level she wild surges has a 1 in 20 chance of causing enervation where she loses more power points than she would have spent and becomes dazed for a round. It's good in that it lets her punch above her weight (really nice for a 'blaster' concept) but has a significant risk associated with it.

Lastly, if you feel that the demoralize power is a bit much for a 1st-level power, that's cool. My second option was to take a defensive power (force screen, virtually identical to shield) which I'll happily do.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Oh, and can I add:

Silver holy symbol of Asmodeus, melt it down and it is still silver!

Sinister Mace - if we file off the pentagrams, chains and serial numbers it's still a masterwork mace ...


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

First, my reading of the first four installments of the AP is that they have excellent "dungeon settings" with a thinly veiled railroad leading to each one. I would like to make it more sandboxy, give the PCs more scope. So, feel free to go places and try things, talk to people, whatever. The story may wander a little, but that's OK with me. Part of the reason you all made up three contacts is so you'd have somebody to go to in the city outside the party.

Second, Arael has a job for Akorian. It may look like I'm annointing Akorian as leader of the group. That is not my intention. I rather like to whole democratic-autocratic tension in the party right now. It's mostly about getting Arael out of your way too without doing another Janiven. I hope the way the party runs itself evolves naturally as you guys drive it.

Third, a list of personal faults. I often read too fast and misinterpret or just miss things. FOrgetful. Not the sharpest with the rules. So if I don't address questions in game or out of game please ask again. I will set up a "to do" list here to help remind me.

1. Resolve Waifrin's new power. (This will involve digging out and digesting rules. Always a long and lengthy process for me.)

2. Get new to do s from the group.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7
therealthom wrote:
1. Resolve Waifrin's new power. (This will involve digging out and digesting rules. Always a long and lengthy process for me.)

As I said, I have a much simpler 2nd choice if it makes life easier for you!


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
Dabbler wrote:
therealthom wrote:
1. Resolve Waifrin's new power. (This will involve digging out and digesting rules. Always a long and lengthy process for me.)
As I said, I have a much simpler 2nd choice if it makes life easier for you!

Please post particulars.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

... it's the psionic version of shield:

Spoiler:

Force Screen
Psychokinesis [Force]
Level: Psion/wilder 1, psychic warrior 1
Display: Auditory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Personal
Target: You
Duration: 1 min./level
Power Points: 1
You create an invisible mobile disk of force that hovers in front of you. The force screen provides a +4 shield bonus to Armor Class (which applies against incorporeal touch attacks, since the force screen is a force effect). Since it hovers in front of you, the effect has no armor check penalty associated with it.
Augment: For every 4 additional power points you spend, the shield bonus to Armor Class improves by 1.

The other ability I considered:

Spoiler:

Urban Strider
Psychometabolism
Level: Psion/wilder 1, psychic warrior 1
Display: Visual
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Personal
Target: You
Duration: 1 min./level
Power Points: 1
You enhance your ability to move across city streets and across rooftops, you gain a +5 competence bonus on Balance and Jump [Pathfinder: Acrobatics] checks. You do not need to make checks when running or charging across a sloped surface. You automatically succeed on all Jump checks to clear a gap of five feet or less and you can make standing long jumps and high jumps as if they were running long jumps or high jumps. You can move at your full normal speed through crowds.
Augment: If you spend 8 additional power points you spend, you can walk normally on any city surface as if it were level ground. This includes perfectly vertical walls, windows and even clotheslines. Your speed remains unchanged even when walking straight up a wall.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Psionic Items

I don't think I actually made a post about psionic items, so here's one! There are several types of items that can be called 'psionic' rather than 'magic' but all in all they aren't all that different. This is just a quick run-down,. the full SRD list is here.

Armour & Shields:
There are some different armour properties that can be had, such as Quickness (+5 feet of movement), Landing (fall 60 feet with no damage), Floating (as the float power), or for shields Heartening (+5 hp once per day).

Weapons:
These are much more interesting. You have simple effects like Psychokinetic (+1d4 force damage) or Collision (+5 damage per hit) similar to magic weapons. Then you have some very odd weapons: Mindcrushing weapons force you to lose half the hit point damage from them in Power Points if you are psionic and they hit you; Mindfeeding weapons give you power points equal to damage scored on a critical hit. Psychic weapons are the oddest, they have a bonus dependant on your current power points, from +1 to +5.

Cognizance Crystals:
There's no magical equivalent of these; they are crystals that can store psionic power. You can charge them from your power point reserve, then use those power points days later. A 1 point crystal (that can store one power point) costs 1000gp, a 3 point crystal 4000gp, etc.

Dorjes:
Functionally, these crystal rods are wands, and fulfill the same function and have the same cost, with powers used instead of spells.

Power Stones:
These are functionally the same as scrolls, with the same cost.

Psicrowns:
These are items that carry a large internal reserve of power points and can use it to activate a short list of related powers. They are incredibly expensive.

Psionic Tattoos:
Psionic Tattoos can be transferred between individuals, and have the same kind of effects as potions - personal effect powers that anyone can use.

Other items ... There are a wide array of items too many for me to describe; you might want to look up Crystal Anchors to prevent power manifestation, crystal masks, third eyes. Psionatrixes are amulets that give a boost to powers of a given type which are useful, and psychoactive skins are just weird.

Well, I hope that gives you some ideas ...


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Oh, and I remembered this nifty substance from the Eberron Campaign Setting - I know it's not 'cannon' but it might make an interesting addition:

Crysteel:
The Inspired lords of Riedra supervise the mining of a crystalline substance that can be a lloyed w ith iron to form Riedran crysteel. Crysteel makes excellent weapons, and the crystalline component makes them resonate with psionic power. When wielded by a character who has at least 1 power point, a crysteel weapon gains a +1 enhancement bonus on damage rolls. Riedran crysteel has hardness 10 and 20 hit points per inch of thickness. Items made of crysteel are susceptible to the shatter spell, but gain a +4 bonus on their saving throws to resist it because the crystal is alloyed with iron. The market price modifi er for a crysteel weapon is +1,500 gp. Items without metal parts cannot be made from Riedran crysteel.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Dabbler, force screen is absolutely OK as written. One question I have is that the screen hovers "in front of" you like shield. So would it apply to attacks from behind? It might not work so well if you're surrounded by enemies.

urban strider is OK. The only concern I have is with the augmentation. Ajudicating "City Surfaces" may leave us in conflict. Where does "city" begin and end.

Demoralize

Telepathy [Mind-Affecting]
Level: Psion/wilder 1
Display: Mental and olfactory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: 30 ft.
Area: 30-ft.-radius spread centered on you
Duration: 1 min./level
Saving Throw: Will negates
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 1
You fill your enemies with self-doubt. Any enemy in the area that fails its save becomes shaken for the duration of the power. Allies and creatures without an Intelligence score are unaffected.
Augment: For every 2 additional power points you spend, this power’s range and the radius of its area both increase by 5 feet, and the power’s save DC increases by 1.

That olfactory display just has me thinking fart bomb. I'm sorry I just can't get past it.

This is equivalent to at least a 2nd level spell at base power, maybe 3rd. The augmentation seems cheap. If you want it at 4th level it's OK as written. If you want it now I'm willing to negotiate or playtest it starting with reducing the area of effect to 15' radius and boosting the augmentation to 4 points for each 5' and DC boost. We'll see how it goes and adjust from there. I imagine that any adjustments will favor you.

Since I really have to work to rationalize this, I suggest we start looking at your future powers now so I can get my mind around the power curve. I have to push myself to remember you're only going to have half as many powers as your level +1. So your powers should be good, but you'll be able to cast alot at higher levels.


therealthom wrote:
This is equivalent to at least a 2nd level spell at base power, maybe 3rd. The augmentation seems cheap.

I agree that it would probably fit in as a 2nd level power, but I don't see anything wrong with the augmentation. Psionic powers often get the equivalent of Heighten Spell "for free" (e.g. if you manifest something using the power points of a 3rd level power, it has the DC of a 3rd level power). I don't think there's anything wrong with that, although for the record I think that all spellcasters should get the equivalent of Heighten Spell for free.


This IS the internet you know ... Alegedly human Expert (IT) 5/Ninja 3/Witch 7

Not a problem, Thom, Force Screen it is. From the description, I always envisioned that the disk can move around to block an attack from any angle. It certainly fits with the lack of any ‘facing’ mechanic in 3.5 and Pathfinder.

Hogarth, you have put your finger on the crux of the issue with psionics. Psionics has a point-based resource system that is better than Vancian casting at managing your resources. In order to get more bang out of a power, you have to augment it, making it cost the same amount as a higher level power to manifest. The increase in save DC reflects this greater investment of resources. You could argue that Vancian casters have the first half of a heighten for free, but have to pay for the second half with a feat and resources. Psionic manifesters have a heighten available without the feat, but have to expend the resources to get it every time.

As comparison, if you convert a sorcerer’s spells per day into the equivalent of power points, with a 20 in their Charisma they will get 512 points of spells. Waifrin, if she has a 20 Charisma at level 20 will have 393 power points. The Sorcerer will know 52 spells (including bloodline spells). Waifrin will know 11 powers from her wilder levels alone. Because I have chosen the ‘trained’ option, she loses the Volatile Mind class feature at 5th, 9th, 13th and 17th level, which instead gives a her a free feat – Expanded Knowledge – at these levels instead. This will give her 15 powers in total. This makes my choice of powers fairly vital, I need ones that either I will use very frequently, or else that maximise my Wild Surge ability with them. It is why I have in effect gone for a ‘blaster’ concept for her. However, there are powers that will become increasingly useful for the party to have around.

”Expanded Knowledge”:

EXPANDED KNOWLEDGE [PSIONIC]
You learn another power.
Prerequisites: Manifester level 3rd.
Benefit: Add to your powers known one additional power of any level up to one level lower than the highest-level power you can manifest. For example, a 7th-level psion gains either a new 1st, 2nd, or 3rd-level power. You can choose any power, including powers from another discipline’s list or even from another class’s list.
Special: You can gain this feat multiple times. Each time, you learn one new power at any level up to one less than the highest-level power you can manifest.

Thom, I have an idea as to which powers I will choose, and I’ll list them here and then spoiler them for you to peruse. For 2nd level I’ll go with Force Screen. I agree Demoralise is very powerful for a 1st level power. On the other hand, other first level powers are at cantrip level – for obvious reasons, I won’t be picking them. I’ll stress this listing is fairly malleable. I like to grow my characters organically, following a plan that matches their personality, but adapting to the conditions they are in. For example, if we are on other planes by the time we reach 10th level, Plane Shift, Psionic would be a logical choice. If we are rooting out hidden rakshasas in high society, True Seeing, Psionic is a better bet.

Powers:

1st level: Energy Ray
2nd level: Force Screen
4th level: Energy Adaptation, Specified or Levitate, Psionic* are the main two I am looking at, but I would prefer to see how the game develops before choosing. Concussion Blast is another contender.
5th level: Expanded Knowledge power: Mindlink.
6th level: Touchsight or Dispel Psionics*.
8th level: Intellect Fortress or Dimension Door, Psionic*.
9th level: Expanded Knowledge power: Energy Missile. This is also a pre-requisite for a feat I have my eye on.
10th level: At this point I‘m really not sure how things will evolve, and I’d rather make a choice closer to the time.

* This power is pretty much just like the spell of the same or similar name.

”Energy Adaptation, Specified”:

Psychometabolism [see text]
Level: Psion/wilder 2, psychic warrior 2
Power Points: 3
As energy adaptation, except you must choose one type of energy to which you gain resistance when this power is manifested.
This power’s subtype is the same as the type of damage it protects against.
Augment: If you spend 4 additional power points, you can manifest this power as an immediate action.

From Energy Adaptation:
Your body assimilates some of the effect of an energy attack and converts it to harmless light. You gain resistance 10 against any attack that deals acid, cold, electricity, fire, or sonic damage. When you absorb damage, you can choose to radiate visible light that illuminates a 60-foot radius for a number of rounds equal to the points of damage you successfully resisted, or merely dissipate the energy without giving off a visual display.
The energy resistance provided by this power increases to 20 points at 9th manifester level and to a maximum of 30 points at 13th level. The power protects your equipment as well.
The resistance provided by this power does not stack with other forms of energy resistance.

”Concussion Blast”:

Psychokinesis [Force]
Level: Psion/wilder 2
Display: Auditory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Target: One creature or object
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: None
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 3
A subject you select is pummeled with telekinetic force for 1d6 points of force damage. You can choose to have the power deal an equal amount of nonlethal damage instead. Concussion blast always affects a subject within range that you can see, even if the subject is in melee or has cover or concealment (you cannot use this power against creatures with total cover or total concealment). Nonmagical, unattended objects (including doors, walls, locks, and so on) may also be damaged by this power.
Augment: You can augment this power in one or both of the
following ways.
1. For every 2 additional power points you spend, this power’s damage increases
by 1d6 points.
2. For every 2 additional power points you spend, this power can affect an additional
target. Any additional target cannot be more than 15 feet from another target of the power.

Mindlink:

Telepathy [Mind-Affecting]
Level: Telepath 1
Display: Mental
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels); see text
Targets: You and one other willing creature within range that has an
Intelligence score of 3 or higher
Duration: 10 min./level
Saving Throw: None; see text
Power Resistance: Yes (harmless)
Power Points: 1
You forge a telepathic bond with your target. You can communicate telepathically through the bond even if you do not share a common language. No special power or influence is established as a result of the bond. Once the bond is formed, it works over any distance (although not from one plane to another).
Augment: You can augment this power in one or both of the following ways.
1. If you spend 4 additional power points, you can attempt to create a telepathic bond with a creature that is not willing (Will save negates).
2. For every additional power point you spend, this power can affect an additional target. Any additional target cannot be more than 15 feet from another target of the power.

Touchsight:

Psychometabolism
Level: Psion/wilder 3
Display: Visual
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Personal; see text
Target: You
Duration: 1 min./level (D)
Power Points: 5
You generate a subtle telekinetic field of mental contact, allowing you to “feel” your surroundings even in total darkness or when your sight would otherwise be obscured by your physical environment. Your touchsight field emanates from you out to 60 feet.
You ignore invisibility, darkness, and concealment, though you must have line of effect to a creature or an object to discern it. You do not need to make Spot or Listen checks to notice creatures; you can detect and pinpoint all creatures within 60 feet. In many circumstances, comparing your regular senses to what you learn with touchsight is enough to tell you the difference between visible, invisible, hiding, and concealed creatures.
Augment: For every 2 additional power points you spend, the radius of your touchsight fi eld increases by 10 feet.

”Intellect Fortress”:

Psychokinesis
Level: Psion/wilder 4
Display: Auditory
Manifesting Time: 1 immediate action
Range: 20 ft.
Area: 20-ft.-radius spread centered on you
Duration: 1 round
Saving Throw: None
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 7
You encase yourself and your allies in a shimmering fortress of telekinetic force. All damage from powers and psi-like abilities taken by subjects inside the area of the intellect fortress, including ability damage, is halved. This lowering takes place prior to the effects of other powers or abilities that lessen damage, such as damage reduction and evasion. Powers that are not subject to power resistance are not affected by an intellect fortress.
You can manifest this power instantly, quickly enough to gain its benefits in an emergency. Manifesting the power is an immediate action, like manifesting a quickened power, and it counts toward the normal limit of one quickened power per round. You can use this power even when it’s not your turn.
Augment: For every additional power point you spend, this power’s duration increases by 1 round.

“Energy Missile”:

Psychokinesis [see text]
Level: Kineticist 2
Display: Auditory
Manifesting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Targets: Up to fi ve creatures or objects; no two targets can be more than 15 ft. apart.
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: Reflex half or Fortitude half; see text
Power Resistance: Yes
Power Points: 3
Upon manifesting this power, you choose cold, electricity, fire, or sonic. You release a powerful missile of energy of the chosen type at your foe. The missile deals 3d6 points of damage to each creature or object you target, to the maximum of five targets. You cannot hit the same target multiple times with the same manifestation of this power.
Cold: A missile of this energy type deals +1 point of damage per die. The saving throw to reduce damage from a cold missile is a Fortitude save instead of a Reflex save.
Electricity: Manifesting a missile of this energy type provides a +2 bonus to the save DC and a +2 bonus on manifester level checks for the purpose of overcoming power resistance.
Fire: A missile of this energy type deals +1 point of damage per die.
Sonic: A missile of this energy type deals –1 point of damage per die and ignores an object’s hardness.
This power’s subtype is the same as the type of energy you manifest.
Augment: For every additional power point you spend, this power’s damage increases by one die (d6) and for every two additional power points you expend its save DC increases by 1.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2
hogarth wrote:
therealthom wrote:
This is equivalent to at least a 2nd level spell at base power, maybe 3rd. The augmentation seems cheap.
I agree that it would probably fit in as a 2nd level power, but I don't see anything wrong with the augmentation. Psionic powers often get the equivalent of Heighten Spell "for free" (e.g. if you manifest something using the power points of a 3rd level power, it has the DC of a 3rd level power). I don't think there's anything wrong with that, although for the record I think that all spellcasters should get the equivalent of Heighten Spell for free.

The increased DC makes perfect sense congruent to heighten spell. ( And, like you, I've often thought that casters should get some level based bonus to save DCs that would be like an effective heighten spell effect.)

It's the increase in area of effect that bothers me. A 60' foot diameter is a big chunk of realestate in typical combat. At 2 points per 10' diameter increase you could blanket an entire castle at moderate levels. And the DC goes up as a bonus. Of course it would leave the wilder low on power points ....

dabbler, I'll offer you the option if you're still interested: 2 points per +1 DC and/or 2 points per 5' radial increase in area of effect, and you can start at 30' radius. Playtest and we may go to the rule as written.

Look at that. I checked the shield rules again. Although the shield "hovers in front of you", the old facing clause is gone. (I'm showing my age.) OK, shield provides a blanket increase to AC. That will make things easier.

Also, dabbler, I'm not going to hold you to that power progression. I just want to get a rough idea of what's coming. The longer I can think about and get used to the powers the less paranoid I will be about them. Thanks for posting all that.

Also, I'm good with dropping volatile mind for added powers.

hogarth, thanks for dropping by. As always your input is well-reasoned and useful.

dabbler, I hope I'm not too discouraging. Adding psionics is kind of fun, painful but fun.

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