Power level of amps


Psychic Class


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I really like amps on a conceptual level, and they are an interesting an unique option, but compared to other classes and what they give up, they feel underwhelming.

At 2 spells per level, I feel amps should make their target cantrips about as good as a level appropriate focus spell, since they are supposed to be your main thing, but many of them fall short of that.

I really like Mental Scan and Message's amps, but like, Daze doesn't get anything cool unless they fail the save, and even then, the penalty is fairly small, and the damage is still the same. An amped telekinetic projectile should really be doing 1d10/level or so if I'm trading out a significant amount of spell slots to be able to boost my cantrips, etc.

We aren't, say, a sorcerer, where we have a ton slots and the focus spells are just gravy; these amps represent our defining feature, and they should be powerful enough to reflect that


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I agree with that
Only 1 die size increase on the telekinetic projectile is not very good

The aoe gets effectively double damage dice, thats more like it (even though the base damage is kind of low)


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Amped Daze should just straight up do at least 1d6/spell level + mod. There's no real reason that it needs to do less damage than an un-amped TK. It's definitely safe to make it hit a little harder than Electric Arc, and it's only one target.


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It's definitely a line that I have a hard time finding. Especially the non damaging cantrips, how much value they give. The damaging ones should be a little easier, I would think, but even with them I have a hard time really placing how much of an impact they should have.

On the hand they should be dealing more damage - amping and special cantrips are half of a psychics special class features, the class gets half the spells of full casters like wizard and sorc (which themselves also have class features like bloodlines and thesis/schools), most of the psyche options have some pretty major drawbacks to balance out the free amping (especially the default one which doesn't boost cantrips at all), the class itself doesn't get many slots so it shouldn't rely on slots for damage, the cantrips themselves (which should be special) don't stack up against other cantrips (base telekinetic rend being worse than electric arc/scatter scree in most situations), and the class has weak defenses (seems like it's trying to be a glass cannon).

On the other hand, reasons they should be kept as is - 2 focus points to start with and able to recover 2 gives the class more longevity, psyche making amped cantrips useable for almost the first 5 rounds of combat, some feats with psyche can give damage boosts to said amped cantrips (though other classes have damage boosters in their own ways, like bard with dirge of doom or oracle with their curses).

So should (at least the damaging) amped cantrips be on the same level as regular focus spells? I say yes.


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Imo, the aoe should do basically the same damage as a focus blast, which is basically (2d6*spell level)-2d6, with the main deviations being blasts that also have rider effrcts typically being weaker. Making it so TK rend has 2 AoEs that do 1d10/level is pretty close to this.

If I had to be perfectly honst though, I'd actually rather AoE be handled by TK projectile becoming a scorching ray kind of deal, where amping it keeps the current damage and knocks it down to one action and having a variable action effect where 2 actions flings at two targets at 1d10/level, and 3 is three targets, same damage, and have the level 4 cantrip be a combat maneuver or battlefield type of telekinesis.

IMO, the main fantasy of playing a telekinetic is grabbing and maniplating things with you mind (imo, the mage hand amp falls just short of this, but it would be there if it let you perform more complex interact actions at range, like picking a lock, activating a potion, etc; I'd be fine if this was a heighten effect), flinging stuff as an attack (TK projectile, suitably powered up, worked nicely), and grabbing/tripping people with you mind. Telekinetic Maneuver kinda does this, but you dont have enough slots to do it frequently, and it cant fulfill the grab fantasy. I think something like a 30 ft cantrip that by default does a shove or trip, with an amp that does a grab that can be maintained via sustain action would fill this role quite well


Dubious Scholar wrote:
Amped Daze should just straight up do at least 1d6/spell level + mod. There's no real reason that it needs to do less damage than an un-amped TK. It's definitely safe to make it hit a little harder than Electric Arc, and it's only one target.

My ideal I think would be making it Mod damage, with heighten +1 1d6 damage, successful save is stupify 1 for 1 round, fail is stupify 2 for 1 rounds, and crit fail is stupify 3 for 1 round and stunned 1

Alternatively, turning it into persistent damage, don't increase the damage, and stupify while the persistent damage is going on, with the stunned 1 on a crit fail


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I think i have figured out why i dislike tk rend so much. It should be amped scatter scree.


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After some thought I think I'm only OK with amped Message (well, more than OK, I think it is great), the rest go from meh to pretty bad honestly. Mental Scan is almost there, but the base form should allow to roll with Occultism regardless of the aided action a la One for All or Inspire Competence so the amped version feels like it should (I would also be ok with the amped buff being a status bonus, but the swing might be too much on the edge cases).

All the other ones need serious help, both in base and amped forms to be useful considering the class has 2/3rd spellcasting and bad proficiencies.


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roquepo wrote:

After some thought I think I'm only OK with amped Message (well, more than OK, I think it is great), the rest go from meh to pretty bad honestly. Mental Scan is almost there, but the base form should allow to roll with Occultism regardless of the aided action a la One for All or Inspire Competence so the amped version feels like it should (I would also be ok with the amped buff being a status bonus, but the swing might be too much on the edge cases).

All the other ones need serious help, both in base and amped forms to be useful considering the class has 2/3rd spellcasting and bad proficiencies.

2/4ths, let's be a little more shrewd. The baseline of full casting is supposed to be four slots, going down to three is a trade off, and down to 2 is a larger trade off


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

It occurs to me that they might be a little conservative because of the multiclass archetype.

I mean the multiclass has to get a psi cantrip right? Also probably able to some form of Unleash maybe without the free focus point.

This class is a fine example of why I think the multiclass archetype really needs to be in the playtests for classes.


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Amp'd daze should be cone with higher damage - basically an updated Psionic Blast.

Amp'd Tele Projectile should a line of be able to attack multiple targets like someone controlling a weapon via telekinesis and making multiple attacks with it rather than just flinging something at target like it is right now. This fulfils an awesome fantasy.

Amp'd mage hand could just be a telekinetic maneouvre, I mean is ranged trip or shove al that devastating? Make it shorter range that increases over time if needed. Right now it is borderline useless.

Amp'd message is fine.

But really there was a lot of potential here and loads of previous examples in previous editions what they could have made into amps for existing cantrips.

I would like to see the class move away from spell slots altogether and instead focus on cantrips but a slew of varied amp effects to mimic advancing and bending a limited number of powers. This steps on the kineticists toes a little but to be honest Kineticist is really just a pyrokineticist or cyrokineticist etc based on elemental choices.

Dataphiles

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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

What I’d like to see is their psi cantrips be worth casting without amp, and amps making them about equivalent to existing focus spells. Keep in mind the class is losing 2 slots a level (or equivalent) for this, yes they get 5 of them per combat starting at level 1, but that’s a significant loss to be feeling.

TK Rend should start at 1d6/level, Amp to double the damage.

TKP should add add a minor push (5ft S, 10ft CS). Amp should increase the damage to d10s and increase the push significantly, or make it 1 action.

Mage Hand should increase the quantity of actions it can do. Perhaps allow you to perform an interact as if it were a real hand by base, allowing you to draw items for allies (or something else combat related). Amp should allow you to grapple, shove, trip or disarm with your spell mod (similar to telekinetic maneuver).

Arrest Trajectory - no clue what to do about that. Maybe increase the base to +2 and have it apply to all attacks? The counter TKP amp seems reasonable.

Detect Magic should do something better. I don’t know what.

Guidance - the base spell is fine but not amazing, especially with a 1 hour cooldown. Perhaps baseline the cooldown should just be removed, though that might make it too strong for out of combat purposes. Amp should allow the guidance to be used post-roll in addition to the CF bump effect. The CF bump effect isn’t all that impressive given you have to use it pre-roll.

Mental Scan - Actually quite reasonable, though I wish it specified what you were supposed to Aid with. Spell Attack Modifier seems the most reasonable (affects both subclasses equally), Occultism is stacked towards the int subclass though I can understand people want more juice for int.

Future Path - spell should not trigger reactions off its own casting, amp should be 1a.

Daze - Increase the damage baseline to 1d6/spell level+SAM, or make it multitarget. Amp penalties should go up - full spell level mental weakness and -2 will saves. Given there’s no mental rune (or any way for someone to add mental damage to their attacks) I feel pretty comfortable with full spell level weakness.

Message - Amp is good, I wish the baseline had something minor like reaction to Step.

Nudge Intent - IMO Paizo has always overvalued these sorts of mechanics - “Punisher” mechanics as I dub them where the opponent is given 2 bad choices. Both of those choices have to feel much worse for the opponent than the normal otherwise they end up underpowered, M:tG took a while to learn this lesson. The frightened value should be increased given it’s on their turn, so it ticks down immediately at the end. The action compulsion should be their first action, not any action on their turn.

Shatter Mind - Increase the damage to d6/spell level, amp for double the damage.


cheezeofjustice wrote:

It occurs to me that they might be a little conservative because of the multiclass archetype.

I mean the multiclass has to get a psi cantrip right? Also probably able to some form of Unleash maybe without the free focus point.

This class is a fine example of why I think the multiclass archetype really needs to be in the playtests for classes.

You can tie some of the power to the base psi cantrips and make this upgrades imposible to get with the dedication if you fear it might be too strong. For example, you can upgrade the base effect of TKP by 1 dice size or 2 and add a flat bonus to damage on amp plus the push thing or make it an AoE with a reflex save.


There are certain limitations placed on focus spells, especially in terms of raw damage. So d10/spell level plus spellcasting modifier TKP is probably out at level 1 and so is 2d6/spell level Telekinetic Rend most likely.

That said, this class offers more opportunities to play with this system.

For one, each amp only can't be stronger than focus spells of that specific spell level. But outside of that, especially the ones granted by our class features, amps don't have to follow traditional focus spell rules. Like the need for using linear spell progression. Because while 4d6 Telekinetic Rend is likely too strong at spell level 2, 6d6 for a 3rd level focus spell is extremely strong but not impossible - dragon's breath deals 5d6 damage in a substantially bigger area, for example. It'd be pretty messy, though.

The second point we could leverage is the Subconscious Mind feature. Currently it offers one extremely situational benefit for some pretty hefty drawbacks, even in the context of the class as a whole. We could easily put some kind of damage booster in here, if that is something that we feel like it should happen.

The last point is Unleash Psyche. This is in my opinion the best place for a "booster" to smooth things over and do some cool flavouring as well. While in Leashed state (ie. you don't have your psyche Unleashed), you get a minor boost. Once you enter the Unleashed state, you get a massive boost in addition to the regular things your Unleash does. I think that would be the neatest and most elegant solution.


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Yeah most blasting focus spells (with an aoe) deal one or two damage dice less than level x 2d6. I could see an amped aoe cantrip doing a couple less damage dice than that since they're more spamable. But as it is right now amped cantrips are more like half damage.

Sorc dragon breath at lvl 20 - 19d6
Domain spell cry of destruction @20 - 10d8 or 10d12
Summoner eidolons wrath @20 - 19d6
Monk ki blast 2 actions @20 - 17d6
Oracle whirling flames @20 - 14d6
Psychic tk rend @20 - 10d6

And most of the focus spells below 19d6 have some other benefit, like better area, synergy with other spells, better damage types, variable action cost, etc. I know this is beating a dead horse but I wanted to put some numbers down.


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Gaulin wrote:

Yeah most blasting focus spells (with an aoe) deal one or two damage dice less than level x 2d6. I could see an amped aoe cantrip doing a couple less damage dice than that since they're more spamable. But as it is right now amped cantrips are more like half damage.

Sorc dragon breath at lvl 20 - 19d6
Domain spell cry of destruction @20 - 10d8 or 10d12
Summoner eidolons wrath @20 - 19d6
Monk ki blast 2 actions @20 - 17d6
Oracle whirling flames @20 - 14d6
Psychic tk rend @20 - 10d6

And most of the focus spells below 19d6 have some other benefit, like better area, synergy with other spells, better damage types, variable action cost, etc. I know this is beating a dead horse but I wanted to put some numbers down.

You know, I've understood amp damage was weak, but seeing it spelled out like this is staggering.

Like, amped TK rend should definitely be doing ~18d6 (imo, the two mini bursts are better than a cone or emination, but they bursts are also much smaller and less numerous than whirling flames)

Amped TK projectile could straight up double the dice; single target spells tend to do about 4d6 more damage than an equal level blast, and TKP doing 2d6+casting mod more than an on level focus blast is actually really close to that

Amped guidence could probably just start with ignoring the 1 hr immunity, offer the crit fail protection, and just scale up the status bonus to +2 at heighten (3rd), and just follow heroism's progression, with a 1 higher status bonus and be fine.

Amped message is good as is

Amped Mage Hand could heighten to allow higher levels of dexterity and allow for interact actions

Amped daze need to have a good success effect and have either/both multi targeting, increased damage, or something weird like a sustained duration or mind probing effect

Idk what to do about amped detect magic, but I really wish it has to do with sensory enhancement or tracking instead a mild magic defense increase. Imo, tracking a known magic signature like the locate spell, would be a lot cooler, feel more like esp, and add some unique utility


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Daze should just be d4/level+Mod baseline I feel. Maybe level-1. Because we all know that the printed Daze is significantly underpowered, and it's not like it's an AoE to justify lower damage...

There's no reason Psychic's improved baseline can't just be Electric Arc damage level, and then amp pushes it up to use a d6 and adds more negatives for failing the save (stunned 0/0/1/2 or worse?)


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So, things just turned a bit weird for me. In the last Nonat1s video, a viewer pointed out the following line under conscious mind/surface psi cantrips:

"The Amp Heightened entry is in addition to any normal Heightened entry for the cantrip."

I, personally, totally overlooked that line. Then again, both me and everyone here has already been doing that for the non-damage parts of cantrips and at least TKP specifies that it overrides the previous heighten.

But Telekinetic Rend's amp doesn't do that, at least not clearly imo. It really depends on how you read "The bursts deal 1d6 bludgeoning damage and 1d6 slashing damage, instead of the usual damage.". So it isn't completely clear if the amped version heightens by 2d6 or 4d6 every other spell level. If +4d6 really is intended... please don't? Only heightening every other spell level is already weird enough. In any case, this could use clearer phrasing.

The insanity of thinking this was also the case for Shatter Mind was thankfully short lived, as I reread the section and properly noticed that it was under "surface psi cantrips", while Shatter Mind is a Deeper Psi Cantrip. The idea of +1d6/+3d6/+1d6/+3d6/..etc. heightening was a bit much XD


Edit for previous comment: its 2d6 or 3d6 (not 4d6). I'm just an idiot ^^


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The thing that gets me kinda worry is that whomever wrote the daze amp didn't even realise that the critical amp effect is the exact same as the base crit effect, making it redundant.


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shroudb wrote:
The thing that gets me kinda worry is that whomever wrote the daze amp didn't even realise that the critical amp effect is the exact same as the base crit effect, making it redundant.

Daze is just a terrible base that needs to be reworked or changed out...


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Frozencaveman wrote:
shroudb wrote:
The thing that gets me kinda worry is that whomever wrote the daze amp didn't even realise that the critical amp effect is the exact same as the base crit effect, making it redundant.
Daze is just a terrible base that needs to be reworked or changed out...

Yes... And it's amp too. ;)

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

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I'm agreeing with a lot here. I like the unique cantrips, but the amps feel really underwhelming.


I really, really, would like to see a Psychic with many unique Cantrips, since I honestly don't feel like one unique cantrip per class path brings enough uniqueness neither cover a good chunk of a "Psychic" basis.

Having unique cantrips is something that other classes already have in quite well, without being locked out, such as the Bard. I really can't see any reason why the class shouldn't have more cantrips baseline or at least the chance of buying more.

Another thing is how so much of what you can choose as feats is AMPs, it kinda reminded me of the Alchemist and the vast of majority of feats interacting with Quick Alchemy. It kinda funnels everything to that single point of the class an constricts it a lot. In short, some interesting AMps are great, but it should be getting more, and stronger cantrips, like Bards do.

Grand Archive

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Or be able to apply amps to non-cantrip spells


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Leomund "Leo" Velinznrarikovich wrote:
Or be able to apply amps to non-cantrip spells

I mean, metamagic focus spells coule be kinda cool; like pyrokinesis doing, say, persistent damage to one target equal to it's spell level or something


Leomund "Leo" Velinznrarikovich wrote:
Or be able to apply amps to non-cantrip spells

As far as power/awesomeness budget goes, though, that gets expensive. It turns the psychic from a caster who's all about sustained power (since their default action when not spending slots is basically a focus power rather than a cantrip) to a high-spike burst caster (because they can spend both a slot and a focus point on the same action). It completely changes the feel of the class.

It's also somewhat harder to balance. There are relatively few ampable spells out there right now. Personally, I'd like to see them expand it out as far as, say, "all cantrips from the occult spell list", and maybe include the ones that have been pulled in by class feats as well. That's a notable increase in the number of ampable spells, but it's nothing compared to "and now add the full set of slotted occult spells".

Grand Archive

Sanityfaerie wrote:
Leomund "Leo" Velinznrarikovich wrote:
Or be able to apply amps to non-cantrip spells

As far as power/awesomeness budget goes, though, that gets expensive. It turns the psychic from a caster who's all about sustained power (since their default action when not spending slots is basically a focus power rather than a cantrip) to a high-spike burst caster (because they can spend both a slot and a focus point on the same action). It completely changes the feel of the class.

It's also somewhat harder to balance. There are relatively few ampable spells out there right now. Personally, I'd like to see them expand it out as far as, say, "all cantrips from the occult spell list", and maybe include the ones that have been pulled in by class feats as well. That's a notable increase in the number of ampable spells, but it's nothing compared to "and now add the full set of slotted occult spells".

It really depends on what amps can be applied. Maybe persistent damage as suggested above. Maybe a minor debuff. Maybe a minor buff. Maybe you can only amp slotted spells that aren't your highest level spells?

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