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5E In your Years of Gaming, How many Psionic Characters did you See played

When I play/run D&D in any edition, I see psionic characters

  • All the time. At least one per group.

    Votes: 3 1.2%
  • Pretty frequently. It wasn't rare in our games.

    Votes: 42 17.3%
  • Not much and certainly less common than PHB classes.

    Votes: 62 25.5%
  • Almost never.

    Votes: 91 37.4%
  • Nope. Didn't use psionics at all in my D&D.

    Votes: 39 16.0%
  • Lemony curry goodness.

    Votes: 6 2.5%

  • Total voters
    243

Hussar

Legend
There's no hill to die on. This not a sticking point for WotC, since they agree with us that Psions/Mystics don't need components. If they make one and release it, it will not require components. There may or may not be visual, aural or scent displays like 3e, but those are not components.

Just to quote myself, since it was apparently missed:

"Classes change. What goes into a class changes. What is the "important part" of the identy of a class one day is on the cutting room floor the next. Insisting that X MUST be part of the class just because that's the way it was before doesn't really hold a lot of water when you look at 5e and the evolution of virtually every class over the course of various editions. Other than maybe, and very maybe, a fighter, none of the classes look much like they did before. "
 

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Lanefan

Victoria Rules
I think I can count on one hand the number of times a wizard's spellbook has ever actually mattered in play. Other than as treasure I suppose.
What, you never have them melt down when their owners get hit with Fireballs, or have the ink smear and run when the owner falls into deep water? You never have a Thief steal one?

Missed opportunities, my friend, missed opportunities! :)
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Just another thought to add.

See, I remember, not that long ago, when druids absolutely needed a golden sickle and mistletoe to cast their spells. This was absolutely required. Yet, 3e ejected that bit and, well, everyone got over it.

I remember when paladins absolutely had to be Lawful Good. This was absolutely required and core to the identity of the class. Yet 5e ejected that and everyone got over it.

I remember when clerics absolutely could not use edged weapons. This was absolutely required and core to the identity of the class. Yet, 2e started ejecting that notion and 3e buried it for good. And everyone got over it.
Notice what's common to those three examples?

All of them show restrictions being removed. People tend to very easily "get over" any removal of restrictions, whether removing said restrictions is in fact a good idea or not.

Making psionics use verbal-somatic-material components, by contrast, in effect adds restrictions to how they do what they do; and adding restrictions never goes over as well with those accustomed to the unrestricted version. :)
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Just to quote myself, since it was apparently missed:

"Classes change. What goes into a class changes. What is the "important part" of the identy of a class one day is on the cutting room floor the next. Insisting that X MUST be part of the class just because that's the way it was before doesn't really hold a lot of water when you look at 5e and the evolution of virtually every class over the course of various editions. Other than maybe, and very maybe, a fighter, none of the classes look much like they did before. "
You've claimed that we are dying on a hill for wanting no spell components. Quoting yourself is worthless here. Classes change? So what. WotC has demonstrated in 5e that they still hold to the belief that psionics doesn't require components.

They kept up demonstrating that position as of the most recent psionic UA, so if you're going to make that kind of claim, you need to present hard evidence or else you're just spouting hot air.
 

Hussar

Legend
You've claimed that we are dying on a hill for wanting no spell components. Quoting yourself is worthless here. Classes change? So what. WotC has demonstrated in 5e that they still hold to the belief that psionics doesn't require components.

They kept up demonstrating that position as of the most recent psionic UA, so if you're going to make that kind of claim, you need to present hard evidence or else you're just spouting hot air.

Hey, @Sword of Spirit was the one who brought it up, not me. Go pester him for a change.

Like I said earlier, classes change. Arguing that this or that is a MUST BE THIS WAY doesn't really help you. He stated that he would rather not have psionic rules AT ALL if the psionic rules had components. To me, this is just baffling. It's such a low issue that I cannot believe people actually care. But be that as it may, again, I DO NOT CARE. Components, no components, it doesn't matter to me one whit. And there are a number of hills that people are staking out that is going to make getting any sort of rules set out there more and more problematic.

Instead of focusing on the minutia @Maxperson, try stepping back a second and seeing the forest.

What, you never have them melt down when their owners get hit with Fireballs, or have the ink smear and run when the owner falls into deep water? You never have a Thief steal one?

Missed opportunities, my friend, missed opportunities! :)

Meh. Haven't played 1e in like 30 years. Can't say I miss it too much. And, honestly, the number of times that I fireballed the MU, if he failed his save, he was dead anyway. The spellbook didn't really matter. If he made his save, then, no burning the spellbook. Like I said, it almost never came up.

But, yeah, I gotta admit, my RBDM card must be in my other jacket. :D That sort of gotcha stuff went out of style for us a LONG time ago.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Hey, @Sword of Spirit was the one who brought it up, not me. Go pester him for a change.

Why should he have to argue to back up your incorrect claim?

Like I said earlier, classes change. Arguing that this or that is a MUST BE THIS WAY doesn't really help you. He stated that he would rather not have psionic rules AT ALL if the psionic rules had components.

It will be that way, though. WotC has shown that they are on the same page that he is.

To me, this is just baffling. It's such a low issue that I cannot believe people actually care. But be that as it may, again, I DO NOT CARE. Components, no components, it doesn't matter to me one whit.

You don't get to tell us what is or is now a low issue. Your priorities don't control the world.

And there are a number of hills that people are staking out that is going to make getting any sort of rules set out there more and more problematic.
Once again, because you missed it the first two times, there is no hill here. If WotC makes a Psion, it won't need components.
 

There's no hill to die on. This not a sticking point for WotC, since they agree with us that Psions/Mystics don't need components. If they make one and release it, it will not require components. There may or may not be visual, aural or scent displays like 3e, but those are not components.

I wish you wouldn't keep extrapolating from evidence like this.

It reminds me of the joke about the economist, the mathematician, and the logician on the train. As they cross into Scotland, they see a brown cow out the window.

The economist says, "Huh. The cows in Scotland are brown."

The mathematician says, smugly, "Actually, all we know is that is one cow in Scotland is brown."

The logician, genuinely puzzled, says, "We do? All I know is that there's one cow in Scotland that appears, to the three of us, to be brown on one side. At least part of the time."

Don't be the economist.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I wish you wouldn't keep extrapolating from evidence like this.

So far WotC is 100% on this in 5e with multiple attempts. This continues what they did in 3e and 4e. I see no reason to think it will suddenly change after 20 years without any evidence to indicate that they are shifting.
 

Xaelvaen

Stuck in the 90s
Just thinking about the Jeremy Crawford quote that basically says the reason they didn't want to go with a new class for psions in 5e is because the previous versions, while they have their fans, just didn't get enough traction. And I can certainly see his point. 1e we saw quite a few psionic characters, but, that's because we cheated. :D Once psionics became a "class" in 2e and beyond, I almost never saw one played.

In fact, many of the DM's I played with flat out banned psionics for any number of reasons. So, I'm just tossing up a poll here to see how often people played in groups that had psionic characters. It's not meant to be exact, just a gut feeling.

Pretty darned frequently. Since I started playing in 89, Vancian was never really our favorite magic system. Any excuse to get away from it, for anyone who wanted to delve into the realm of spell slinging, was a good one. 2e and 3e psionics were both quite fun, at least at our table.

For 5e, we just use a house-doctored Sorcerer for Psionics, with the optional Spell Points table from the DMG.
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
So far WotC is 100% on this in 5e with multiple attempts. This continues what they did in 3e and 4e. I see no reason to think it will suddenly change after 20 years without any evidence to indicate that they are shifting.
Here's a rule from the most recent UA:
Psychic Sorcery. When you cast a spell, you can use your mind to form it, rather than relying on words, gestures, and materials. To do so, roll your Psionic Talent die. The spell then requires no verbal component, and if you rolled the level of the spell or higher, the spell doesn’t require somatic or material components either.

Notice the last line? Material components, at least sometimes. So there's that.
 

Olrox17

Hero
Here's a rule from the most recent UA:
Psychic Sorcery. When you cast a spell, you can use your mind to form it, rather than relying on words, gestures, and materials. To do so, roll your Psionic Talent die. The spell then requires no verbal component, and if you rolled the level of the spell or higher, the spell doesn’t require somatic or material components either.

Notice the last line? Material components, at least sometimes. So there's that.
But that’s still a sorcerer, an arcane magic user. It’s just a sorcerer with a Psionic ancestry (or something) capable of occasionally ignoring components, like a true Psion, through the use of sorcery points.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Here's a rule from the most recent UA:
Psychic Sorcery. When you cast a spell, you can use your mind to form it, rather than relying on words, gestures, and materials. To do so, roll your Psionic Talent die. The spell then requires no verbal component, and if you rolled the level of the spell or higher, the spell doesn’t require somatic or material components either.

Notice the last line? Material components, at least sometimes. So there's that.
Yep. I totally notice that a magic user can turn a MAGIC SPELL into psionics and depending on success, remove components. This is not only not a Psion, but is proof that they view psionics as not requiring components. The psionic portion is removing the need for components from the MAGIC SPELL. ;)
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
But that’s still a sorcerer, an arcane magic user. It’s just a sorcerer with a Psionic ancestry (or something) capable of occasionally ignoring components, like a true Psion, through the use of sorcery points.
So what? It's psionics. You don't get to use 'true psion' as some kind of hall pass to ignore examples you don't like. It's not an argument for the idea that material components will be a part of psionics either, just one case where the test rules do that. Counter to the claim that psionics and material components are completely separate in 100% of the cases in 5e thus far.

There's also this, from the same UA:
The philosophy of this approach is most akin to the one taken in the 1st edition of D&D, where psionic powers weren’t the domain of any particular class but were available for characters of different types to experience.

Note the use of the term psionic powers. This precedes the Sorcerer write up, and is a pretty solid indication that WotC at least sees the subclass as one that uses Psionic Powers (with material components no less!), even if you might not agree.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
So what? It's psionics. You don't get to use 'true psion' as some kind of hall pass to ignore examples you don't like.

On the contrary, I love that example since it supports me 100%. Removing the need for components from a MAGIC SPELL via psionics just shows that WotC still views psionics as they have for the last 20 years. Something that does not need components.

There's also this, from the same UA:
The philosophy of this approach is most akin to the one taken in the 1st edition of D&D, where psionic powers weren’t the domain of any particular class but were available for characters of different types to experience.

That's an indication that they may not make a psion, not an indication that psionics doesn't remove the need for components. The Sorcerer psionic subclass clearly shows that psionics removes the need for components.

Also note that not one psionic ability in any of the subclasses requires a single component to use. That sorcerer didn't have to use a stick of gum or something in order to use the psionic power to remove components from the spell.
 

Siriak

Explorer
I voted almost never. I have only ever had one psionics using character and that was in Living Arcanis back in the 3.0 days. I forget the exact name of the class but he was a fighter who used psychic abilities.

I remember we messed around with psionics back when I first started playing in the 1st edition days. The chance to have psionics was so low that I always assumed none of my characters could ever plausibly have them but you had to be familiar with the psionics rules if you had mind flairs and similar creatures in your campaign because they made use of the psionic attacks and defenses.
 

Olrox17

Hero
So what? It's psionics. You don't get to use 'true psion' as some kind of hall pass to ignore examples you don't like. It's not an argument for the idea that material components will be a part of psionics either, just one case where the test rules do that. Counter to the claim that psionics and material components are completely separate in 100% of the cases in 5e thus far.
No, It's not psionics unless a psionic talent die is used.

Let me quote the Sorcerer's Spellcasting class feature:
"An event in your past, or in the life of a parent or ancestor, left an indelible mark on you, infusing you with arcane magic. This font of magic, whatever its origin, fuels your spells."
All sorcerers use arcane magic, by default. A psionic soul sorcerer casting magic missile, is using arcane magic, just like a wild mage or any other sorc subclass.

Now, the difference is that a psionic soul sorcerer "harbors a wellspring of psionic power [...] this power is represented by your psionic talent die". So, a psi sorcerer using the die is using psionic power. And doing so while casting a spell, removes the need for components.
I see an obvious equation here: psionic power=no components.
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
Yep. I totally notice that a magic user can turn a MAGIC SPELL into psionics and depending on success, remove components. This is not only not a Psion, but is proof that they view psionics as not requiring components. The psionic portion is removing the need for components from the MAGIC SPELL. ;)
You can twist yourself up in knots if you like. The UA is pretty clear that the subclasses are using psionic powers, and the one I mentioned also uses material components some of the time. There's no logical leap to psionics never require components that you can make there without also making some rather large assumptions, not in the case of spell-like abilities anyway.

Theat UA article is our most recent evidence of where WotC is with psionics in terms of design. What it tells us is that they are looking at some psionic subclasses, which have pretty traditional non-component abilities. However, the only 'full caster' equivalent is still contained within the current magic system. There's no evidence there that a different 'full caster' equivalent would escape the magic system or not, or that they intend to create such a class at all. That doesn't mean they won't, but there's no reason to think that class will operate outside the magic system entirely.
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
No, It's not psionics unless a psionic talent die is used.
The subclass uses the psionic talent die. So, sometimes psionic power can obviate material components. Cool. There's still no evidence for Max's claim that a full Psion will never need material components. Personally, I hope he's right, but hopes and evidence are two different things.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
You can twist yourself up in knots if you like.

I got there without a single twist, though. It's very straightforward in its ability to remove components from a magical spell via psionics. If you are suggesting otherwise, you're the one twisting things.

The UA is pretty clear that the subclasses are using psionic powers, and the one I mentioned also uses material components some of the time.

So first, the magical spell is not a psionic power and it needs components like other spells, yes. Second, the subclass is in fact using a psionic power without the use of components. That power is called Psychic Sorcerery. Third, that psionic power being used is then removing in part or in whole, the need for components from the magical spell. At no point is the spell itself ever the psionic power being used.

Not one psionic power in the new UA uses a component. Several do use a resource. That being the psionic talent die.
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
I got there without a single twist, though. It's very straightforward in its ability to remove components from a magical spell via psionics. If you are suggesting otherwise, you're the one twisting things.


So first, the magical spell is not a psionic power and it needs components like other spells, yes. Second, the subclass is in fact using a psionic power without the use of components. That power is called Psychic Sorcerery. Third, that psionic power being used is then removing in part or in whole, the need for components from the magical spell. At no point is the spell itself ever the psionic power being used.

Not one psionic power in the new UA uses a component. Several do use a resource. That being the psionic talent die.
It's not that I don't get how you're moving from A to B, I do, I just don't agree with you about what it means. Right now there are no spell-like psionic abilities that are separate from the casting rules. Every full caster psion ever designed for D&D has had access to a host of spells, or spell-like abilities if you prefer. So the Sorcerer in question is our only example of what a full-caster psion would look like in 5E, at least at this point in the design cycle. There's no other evidence of anything for what a full class Psion might look like, other than that it would use the psionic die mechanic.

Just because the psionic die sometimes removes the need for the usual trapping of arcane casting is evidence neither that a 'full psion' class would completely remove those requirements, nor that that class would somehow be created outside the current spellcasting rules.
 

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