Body Snatcher & Capstone


Advice and Rules Questions


One of my players wants to play a psion and is looking at playing a body snatcher. Before he makes that decision I wanted to get some clarity on how its ability "Death is only the beginning" works (the PrC is available publicly on pfsrd).

In the ability description it is clear that the player expends their psionic focus, and that the power is manifested at the level of mind switch (6th level power). What is not clear to me is whether or not the psionic focus consumption is all that it takes to cast the spell, or if the psionic focus just allows it to be cast as an immediate action and then the player has to pay the power points to cast the spell on top of that.

The reason this came up and matters is that there's a series of feats that allow the player to basically get a second psionic focus and maintain the focus to augment the power. If it still costs 17 power points (PP) than he could only slightly buff the DC, by dumping 2 PP per +1DC up to a max of 24 PP for the spell (because of another class feature it is a cap of 24 instead of 20). The bonus either runs from a max of +3 to the DC or a max of + 12 to the DC which is a huge difference, but the DC is already low (at 20th level its 10+6-4+int).

On one hand I don't want my player to be able to get to the point that the save is so ridiculous that he can't fail and begins playing the game as a "not if i kill me first" simulator, but on the other, I do want my players to be able to have nice things, and the concept could be fun. I just don't want to run into an issue where i've allowed something that I shouldn't have and it gets out of hand.


Okay, first off this is actually the PF2 Playtest forum, not PF1.

That said, I know just enough about Psionics to answer this so here we go:

On the Death is only the beginning manifest, I do believe they are required to pay the power points normally. If they were not then it would specify that it is paid by the ability, much like the Wilder's Wild Surge does.

An important not here though, it doesn't say that you manifest True Mind Switch at the level of Mind Switch, it says at the MANIFESTER level of Mind switch. This is to make it clear that you can use your higher manifester level from an earlier class feature to do it like with normal Mind Switch.

So it does manifest as a level 9 power (10+9-4+Int) rather than level 6. And if they pump it up to 23 Power Points (It would be pointless to go to 24 because you only up the DC for every 2 extra points spent) it would be 10+12-4+Int.

Also in case it ever matters, if they ever use Seal the Host or Mindleap Contingency, the power points spent on that count towards their max spending for that power but don't up the DC. Just in case that wasn't known. It doesn't matter for Death Is Only The Beginning, but I wanted to mention it.

So yeah, the ability is pretty darn strong, but I don't think it's enough so to deliberately want to use it because depending on their Int there's just too much risk of the foe making their save and then bye bye Psion. Especially with that -4 involved.

If it gets too out of hand just send a Battle Cleric to kill him. Those punks have nutso Will saves and are freaking OP if built right. XD


Oh, and you may not want to tell your player this but if they take the Overchannel feat they can make this stronger. It lets you up your manifester level (Letting you spend more points) by 1-3 (Depending on your level) but at the cost of taking damage. But in that moment damage doesn't matter. XD

But then again forbidding that feat there because they are already dying would be fair. XD

Oh, and I forgot to say but I'm not sure how them having a second Psionic Focus matters here, aside from letting them expend it for normal things but still keep focus so they can use this ability. I don't think you need Focus to spend extra points to augment a power, the only way it would be useful is if he wanted to use a metapsionic feat like Persistent Power (Takes 2 power points so the DC is one lower but forces the target to make the save twice) while using DIOTB.


Edge93 wrote:

Oh, and you may not want to tell your player this but if they take the Overchannel feat they can make this stronger. It lets you up your manifester level (Letting you spend more points) by 1-3 (Depending on your level) but at the cost of taking damage. But in that moment damage doesn't matter. XD

But then again forbidding that feat there because they are already dying would be fair. XD

Oh, and I forgot to say but I'm not sure how them having a second Psionic Focus matters here, aside from letting them expend it for normal things but still keep focus so they can use this ability. I don't think you need Focus to spend extra points to augment a power, the only way it would be useful is if he wanted to use a metapsionic feat like Persistent Power (Takes 2 power points so the DC is one lower but forces the target to make the save twice) while using DIOTB.

Thanks so much for the response! And great catch and explaination!

Don't know how I ended up in PF2 with the links I clicked to get here but I'll remove this shortly if I can. I do have a couple of follow up questions / psuedo explainations.

I think the extra psionic focus was another feat that allowed him to augment the DC, because True Mind Switch doesn't explicitly mention augmenting the power to up its DC. So my player was thinking he'd need the Endowed mind feat to up the DC, which makes sense to me (i think.. lol). i went and looked at my digital copy of the book and true mind switch doesn't mention any ability to augment it. So he would need a second psionic focus that he could maintain in order to use the ability and up the DC, right or am i missing something else?

The thought of the 24 points to pump the spell would be if there were no initial cost, so what you're saying makes sense that he'd want to keep it odd because rounding down.


Ah, I see. That would be correct on the need for a second focus if using Endowed Mind.

That said, I think it could be argued fairly that True Mind Switch can still be augmented, as the power starts with "As Mind Switch, except as noted here.", so I would think that would extend to it also having the same augment option as Mind Switch since nothing is noted to change that in True Mind Switch.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

Moved to PF1 forum.


This is the incorrect forum, it belongs in the 3rd party rules forum.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

Ah, good point.

Moved to PF1 Third Party forums

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