Psionics??


Character Operations Manual Playtest General Discussion


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I was mildly surprised to see no Psionic classes at all in the new playtest. I was wondering with Lashuntas labeled as "gifted physic" in the Core Rule book that Psionics would be a pretty early addition.


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Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
atr4jc wrote:
I was mildly surprised to see no Psionic classes at all in the new playtest. I was wondering with Lashuntas labeled as "gifted physic" in the Core Rule book that Psionics would be a pretty early addition.

We already have Mystic, a class with a mindlink and telepathic bond (whose casting can be psychic if you want it to be), and the explicitly psychic Phrenic Adept archetype.

"Psychic" (something Pathfinder represented with spontaneous casting classes) is not "psionic" (point-based casting system that Paizo did not use). Somebody else has that covered, though.


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Other than explicitly mental abilities like QuidEst mentions, Starfinder is much more agnostic about it's magic.

The idea is that in the future, with magic being practiced and studied on an industrial scale the barriers have really come down between the different sources of magic.

There's no longer arcane, divine, or psychic casting classes. Now you are, say, a technomancer who draws power from study and practice of formulas, or one who taps into a greater outside force to receive revelations about the underpinnings of the universe, or uses the sheer power of their mind to rewrite reality.

At least that's my understanding of it.


And if you were hoping for the Psionics system that QuidEst mentioned (the point-based casting system) - I get the feeling that the guys on the design teams at Paizo aren't fans of it (otherwise they would've used it in Pathfinder instead of the Occult classes - it's open-content same as the stuff from the 3.5 core book, as I recall).

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Also dreamscarred press just did a Kickstarter to update that system to starfinder.


Lost In Limbo wrote:

Other than explicitly mental abilities like QuidEst mentions, Starfinder is much more agnostic about it's magic.

The idea is that in the future, with magic being practiced and studied on an industrial scale the barriers have really come down between the different sources of magic.

There's no longer arcane, divine, or psychic casting classes. Now you are, say, a technomancer who draws power from study and practice of formulas, or one who taps into a greater outside force to receive revelations about the underpinnings of the universe, or uses the sheer power of their mind to rewrite reality.

At least that's my understanding of it.

This is also what I get from the back ground. It seems like mystics do edge a lot closer to psionics lots of mental attacks and a lot of mind affecting type powers. But like technology you can describe basically any mechanical tech as bio tech if you want and visa versa and magic types seem to have gotten to the point where understanding of magic has come to get people closer to the "source" of the power and less needing to rely on various flavors of arcane/divine/psionics to filter it through.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

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ShadowFighter88 wrote:
And if you were hoping for the Psionics system that QuidEst mentioned (the point-based casting system) - I get the feeling that the guys on the design teams at Paizo aren't fans of it (otherwise they would've used it in Pathfinder instead of the Occult classes - it's open-content same as the stuff from the 3.5 core book, as I recall).

For the record I am a HUGE fan of psionics.

And a huge fan of how Dreamscarred handles them.
And very much looking forward to cracking open my Starfinder-compatible psionics book from Dreamscarred.

Dark Archive

They have pretty much set that up as their main niche, which allows for a certain amount of familiarity across loosely related game systems.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I continue to hold the position: psionics have no real place in a setting that already has magic, because psionics *is* magic. Its just a different flavor. Either you have space opera magic or high fantasy magic, you don't have both.

In the context of Starfinder, this means there is no need for a psionics "class", because all magic using classes are *already* "psionic".


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Metaphysician wrote:

I continue to hold the position: psionics have no real place in a setting that already has magic, because psionics *is* magic. Its just a different flavor. Either you have space opera magic or high fantasy magic, you don't have both.

In the context of Starfinder, this means there is no need for a psionics "class", because all magic using classes are *already* "psionic".

Maybe it's just my Valdemaran upbringing, but I have never understood what was wrong with having both mind-magic and true magic in a series. They don't have to step on each other's toes, and the interplay of the two can even be downright fun.


Metaphysician wrote:
Either you have space opera magic or high fantasy magic, you don't have both.

I am a fan of comic books in general, and Legion of Superheroes in particular, so I have no problem with many multiple power sources for character's abilities.


In a serious sci-fi or fantasy series, limiting the kinds of power available is good writing.

For a game, screw it, have all the sources.


I have a surprise coming for those that enjoy psionics in Starfinder.

Liberty's Edge

Hooray for surprises!


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
ShadowFighter88 wrote:
And if you were hoping for the Psionics system that QuidEst mentioned (the point-based casting system) - I get the feeling that the guys on the design teams at Paizo aren't fans of it (otherwise they would've used it in Pathfinder instead of the Occult classes - it's open-content same as the stuff from the 3.5 core book, as I recall).

For the record I am a HUGE fan of psionics.

And a huge fan of how Dreamscarred handles them.
And very much looking forward to cracking open my Starfinder-compatible psionics book from Dreamscarred.

Don’t get me wrong - I loved 3.5’s take on Psionics and likewise DSP’s Pathfinder port (they actually made the Soulknife a useable class, for one) and I’m looking forward to their SF port as well, now that I know is happening.

I just assume there’s a reason the system was never ported over in a 1st party book.


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
ShadowFighter88 wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
ShadowFighter88 wrote:
And if you were hoping for the Psionics system that QuidEst mentioned (the point-based casting system) - I get the feeling that the guys on the design teams at Paizo aren't fans of it (otherwise they would've used it in Pathfinder instead of the Occult classes - it's open-content same as the stuff from the 3.5 core book, as I recall).

For the record I am a HUGE fan of psionics.

And a huge fan of how Dreamscarred handles them.
And very much looking forward to cracking open my Starfinder-compatible psionics book from Dreamscarred.

Don’t get me wrong - I loved 3.5’s take on Psionics and likewise DSP’s Pathfinder port (they actually made the Soulknife a useable class, for one) and I’m looking forward to their SF port as well, now that I know is happening.

I just assume there’s a reason the system was never ported over in a 1st party book.

I think it is a combination of the Paizo folks not wanting to develop their own spell point system as well as not wanting to step on the toes of Dreamscarred Press. So they opted not to compete directly with their psionics system.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Distant Scholar wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:
Either you have space opera magic or high fantasy magic, you don't have both.
I am a fan of comic books in general, and Legion of Superheroes in particular, so I have no problem with many multiple power sources for character's abilities.

In a superhero setting, or game, power source is flavor. Everyone uses the same "rules" for building their character. Its not really the same thing at all as having mages use one magic system, and psychics use a different magic system with entirely different mechanical function. Which, in addition to being a huge amount of extra balance difficulties, also makes the game considerably harder to *run*, because different characters are using totally different rules.

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