Psionics Expanded: Find the Mark (PFRPG) PDF

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Strike at your enemies from afar with this release in the Psionics Expanded product line.

Whether you want to turn your soulknife into a soulbolt, or discover the varied techniques of the marksman, or add ranged combat support to your psychic warrior, Find the Mark offers a host of player options for your psionic characters.

Psionics Expanded: Find the Mark offers over 20 pages of new psionic material, including the marksman base class, the soulbolt archetype for the soulknife, the Archer psychic warrior path, and the Unseen Hand advanced psion discipline. With over a dozen new feats, over twenty new psionic powers, and new psionic items and weapon abilities, even your existing characters can find something to use in this expansion to Psionics Unleashed.

Psionics Expanded: Find the Mark is the second release of six for the Psionics Expanded: Advanced Psionics Guide which will add a host of new player options playtested by the psionic community across the globe. Designed by the only publishing company known exclusively for psionic support, this book fills in the gaps left to have a truly all-psionic party. Psionics Expanded will be released as six serialized books, with a final release compiling all six parts into a single Advanced Psionics Guide.

Psionics Expanded requires Psionics Unleashed.

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4.00/5 (based on 2 ratings)

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3.5 stars - hits the mark, but not the bull's eye

4/5

This first part of the "Psionics Expanded"-series/book is 29 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, leaving 26 pages, so what exactly do we get?

After the introduction to the material at hand, we are introduced to the update of one of my favorite 3.5-base-classes, the Marksman. Being a specialist psionic ranged fighter, the marksman gets d10, 4+Int skills per level, proficiency with most ranged weapons and light armor, full BAB, good ref and will-saves, up to 70 PSP and access to up to 4th level powers. Depending on your own preference, your marksman will choose from a style of ranged weapons that include bows, crossbows, thrown weapons and spears. Over the course of the marksman's 20 levels, they get access to respective style talents that enable them to rain vast amounts of arrows down on their foes or become the quintessential sniper. While I do love the individual styles in their iconicity, I can't help but feel that they are restricting in that, once chosen, no array of powers or talents is provided to choose from, making the class distinctly more linear than it ought to be.

After this new base-class, we take a closer look some new options for the psionic core-classes - psychokinticists can now focus on telekinetically pummeling foes, a new psychic warrior path is provided to make them archers and soulknives can now become soulbolts via a complex archetype that enables them to use a ranged form of their iconic trademark weapon. In order to offset some balancing concerns you might have, the soulbolt loses access to several blade skills of the soulknives, but can choose from 10 new blade skills.

16 new psionic feats are included in the deal as well and at first, I was rather stupefied by some of them: (Greater) Intuitive shot and Deadly Throw let you add your Wis and Dex-bonuses to damage with your ranged attacks as long as you're focused. While the usefulness of these feats is somewhat diminished by working only within 30 ft., they still are wide open to abuse and personally, I'm wary of them. On the better side, there's also a feat that lets you have your weapon return to you after being thrown and if you expend your focus, the weapons immediately return, enabling you to potentially make a full attack with one thrown weapon. Oh, and there's a feat with concise rules for riccochet-attacks. Which rocks.

The last major section of the pdf is taken up by new powers and kicks off with the respective power-lists, including the new list for the marksman and most of them rock, as they expand upon class-abilities and in some cases, are even reliant on them, resulting in a set of rather complex connections and a feeling of organic wholeness that links the options provided by class-features with those provided by powers.

In case you're looking for a new PrC, the Mystic Archer might be what you've been looking for: The class spans 7 levels, gets d10, good BAB, good ref and will-saves, 2 + int skills per level and give life to one iconic classic of fantasy: The Blind Archer. Gaining blindsense, tremorsense and even blindsight, the ability to expand their senses and unleashing inevitable strikes (as per the power), it is hard to hide from these mystics. If you're playing in an Oriental campaign, this class makes for a great zen-archer!
5 new weapon qualities, specially suitable for ammunition and 3 new magical items round up the book.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting were very good, I didn't notice any glitches that impeded my enjoyment of the pdf. The book adheres to an easy-to-read, printer-friendly 2-column standard and the b/w-artworks ROCK. The pdf comes with extensive bookmarks. On the one hand, I love this pdf, on the other hand, I'm disappointed. Let me elaborate: Most of the crunch is expertly-crafted and I love to see the Marksman find his way to PFRPG. What I don't like, is that while Psychic Warriors, Wilders etc. all now have a wide variety of options, the Marksman is still very limited in styles to choose from and there is a distinct lack of transparency between the styles. If the approach of talents etc. would have been taken and more options provided, the class would be even better. Secondly, while I love the treatment the archetype-soulbolt got, I still would have loved to see a soulbow-PrC-class in addition to the archetype - after all, sometimes PCs want to learn certain things later in the game. That being said, my disappointment probably stems from extremely high expectations and is not entirely fair.
The (with the aforementioned notable exceptions) excellent feats provide an entertaining selection of cool new options and the new powers and magic items can be considered to be unanimously well-made. I do have another gripe, though: Where's the psionic gunslinger? Seriously! I recall an excellent psionic duelist PrC in the deepest recesses of 3.5 and now, with the release of UC, support should be included. In fact, the lack of a gun-style for the marksman is another downer for me, as I always considered Roland of Gilead a multiclass Pala/Gunslinger/Marksman-type of character. I seem to recall that Find the Mark was released before UC, but in the final book, the option of including UC-support should definitely be considered.

While the pdf is still very cheap and I guarantee you won't regret buying it, I can't bring myself to rate this higher than 3.5 stars due to the accumulation of afore-mentioned, nit-picks and gripes. Due to the low price, though, I'll round up to 4 for the purpose of this platform.

Endzeitgeist out.


For the price...

4/5

I love psionics. I love soulknives.

I bought this little pdf to enhance my current soulknife character. The book has some nice features, but I was disappointed with the soulbolt. I do no agree that the soulbolt should replace the soulknife entirely.

The feats are interesting, and I appreciate the book for them, if nothing else. I haven't looked at the powers yet.


Dreamscarred Press

And the second release of Psionics Expanded is now available!

Dreamscarred Press

Thanks for the review, neceros!

We may have to investigate ranged options for the base soulknife, too (possibly in the form of blade skills), but no promises!

However, part of the open design process of Psionics Expanded has allowed fans to contribute ideas and content. If you'd like to contribute some ranged soulknife ideas, you are more than welcome to in our thread here at the Paizo forums!

There's still room in the final Psionics Expanded: Advanced Psionics Guide to include material not in these releases. :)


Why doesn't the Soulbolt have Ghost touch on it's list of weapon qualities?

Dreamscarred Press

The NPC wrote:
Why doesn't the Soulbolt have Ghost touch on it's list of weapon qualities?

Honestly? Because when I was getting the list of abilities for the soulbolt, I went off the ranged weapon abilities in the charts of the PRD, APG, and Psionics Unleashed... and just noticed that Ghost Touch is not on the chart from the core rulebook.

It should be an option and I'll add it in for the final book.


Huzzah, thank you, and do you have an idea on when the final book will be out?

Additionally do have any advice on how to convince folk who say psionics has inherent balance issues to let it into their games? Or at the very least let Soulknife and by extension Soulbolt into their games?

Dreamscarred Press

The NPC wrote:

Huzzah, thank you, and do you have an idea on when the final book will be out?

Additionally do have any advice on how to convince folk who say psionics has inherent balance issues to let it into their games? Or at the very least let Soulknife and by extension Soulbolt into their games?

I would usually argue to give it a try since this is a new edition of Psionics, and specify that you just want to start with the Soulknife, which doesn't have any manifesting, so you don't have to worry about psionic powers, only the psionic class and feats, and show specifically which material you're wanting to use so they can evaluate that.

I'd also explain that the entire system went through a completely public Alpha and Beta playtest (and the soulknife actually got two rounds of Beta playtesting in addition to its round of Alpha playtesting) before it was published.

Dreamscarred Press

In response to time line for the final book: right now, we're shooting for end of the year. We have four parts and around 100-150 pages to go. :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

At this stage, is there any chance of seeing a prestige version of the soulbolt like the old soulbow from 3.5? Archtypes are fine at the start of a game, but most of my players prefer prestige classes for tinkering with their characters once things are rolling.

Dreamscarred Press

Kharis2000 wrote:
At this stage, is there any chance of seeing a prestige version of the soulbolt like the old soulbow from 3.5? Archtypes are fine at the start of a game, but most of my players prefer prestige classes for tinkering with their characters once things are rolling.

There's definitely a chance. I'm not sure about having it directly in Psionics Expanded - we're trying to avoid essentially reproducing 3.5 material (it's why the Marksman is really the only update from 3.5 classes and just about everything else is brand new), but I've been considering it as a free web enhancement.


Reviewed here and sent to GMS magazine. I'm doing the whole series, btw.! ^^

Cheers!

Dreamscarred Press

Great review, End!

A soulbolt-PrC is something I've been bandying back and forth over doing, and you're not the first person to bring it up... I'd expect to see it in the final release, to be quite honest.

As for the gunslinger - you're absolutely right that UC wasn't out yet... that being said, a gun-wielding marksman I think is something we absolutely need to do.


YES! If we get a gunslinging marksman, this is going to be AWESOME when final! (Though I still think some talents/options within the paths of the marksman would be nice...)
My reviews of these component-pdfs of PE take some time, because I really try HARD to nitpick it apart in order to make the final book better (and potentially a 5 star+seal). I'm looking forward to doing the others!

Dreamscarred Press

By the way, End, I'm curious about your concerns with Deadly Throw.

You're exchanging STR for DEX. It's not additive, it's replacing and making the character a bit less MAD at the cost of a feat.


Sorry for taking so long to answer, my computer died on Thursday and I had to fix it. :( With regards to deadly throw - ranged weapons have an inherent advantage over meleee by having...well. RANGE. When exchanging STR for DEX, you, depending on the build, eliminate one necessary attribute from the equation (Dex has a LOT of useful skills and a save attached to it...STR? Not so much.) - replacing one attribute with another, generally, is in my experience cool for certain builds, but also open to abuse/power-gaming.

Another problem I see:
The factors like range/need focus would usually limit the benefits of Deadly Throw, but it is not entirely clear, whether it is possible to use Deadly Throw with Psionic Shot or not - and this combo means a nice slew of extra damage. Clarification would help here, as I'm not sure whether the two feats can be used in conjunction - how do "maintain psionic focus" and "expend psionic focus"-feats interact? Are combos like this viable?

Dreamscarred Press

You can't get the benefit of maintain focus and expend focus at the same time unless you have some second source of focus like Psicrystal Containment.

Similarly, you can't get the benefit of two expend focus effects unless you have an extra source of focus.

You can, however, gain unlimited "maintain focus" abilities at the same time.

So no, you can't expend focus on Psionic Shot and gain the benefit of Deadly Throw - because you are no longer maintaining psionic focus.


Interesting. Thank you for the clarification, it eliminated one of my two gripes here and was enlightening indeed! :)


Now also reviewed on DTRPG - thanks for providing the option to do so, Jeremy.

Liberty's Edge

Is the soulbolt's bolt a thrown weapon (all the text says you "throw" when shooting/launching it, but it's never called out as a thrown weapon specifically) or a projectile (aside from Str to damage on short-range one, it behaves much more in-line with a projectile weapon). I'm asking because there are feats that may specify they only work with throwing weapons rather than all ranged weapons. Should these work with all forms of soulbolt, just the short-range one, or none?

Dreamscarred Press

It's intended to be treated as a projectile, which is why it's explicitly stated that it always has 10 range increments.

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