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D&D 5E Psionics in Tasha

Dire Bare

Legend
Supporter
Heh heh... so amongst all this talk about needing to add psions as a class we also have everyone throwing away all the existing classes at the same time "Don't need the Sorcerer!" "Don't need the Cleric!" "Don't need the Warlock!" "Game only needs 7 classes!" "Game only needs 4 classes!"

And people wonder why WotC doesn't take all of these "requests/demands" seriously and just produces some baseline, standardized stuff for everyone to use instead.

If people spent as much time designing the class they want as they did complaining about WotC not designing it for them... they'd all be better off. At least they'd have something they wanted to play. :)
Is it the same people though? Asking to add the Psion, but remove the Sorcerer, Cleric, or Warlock?

How many classes should D&D have? Which character archetypes should be full classes, subclasses, or some other design frame . . . . There is no right answer, which is why we'll never stop arguing about it.

I loved the addition of the Sorcerer in 3rd Edition, but since then . . . . I don't "need" it removed, but if it was, I might not notice. I love the addition of the Warlock! The Cleric . . . it's classic D&D, but is a weird class in that it doesn't really mirror any mythological or literary fantasy archetypes all that well. The "cleric" certainly shows up in literature and video games post-D&D. I have a hard time distinguishing between Clerics and Paladins in my games, they seem (to me) to be slight variants on the same theme, a member of a martial religious order from the Crusades.

Psionics has been controversial since it was first introduced in Eldritch Wizardry, so in that sense, arguing about it is about as classic D&D as you can get! :)

Personally, I don't think the existing classes model the Psion very well and won't be happy until we get a stand-alone class. Although, I'm fine with a strong third-party design, it doesn't have to be from WotC.
 

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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Psionics has been controversial since it was first introduced in Eldritch Wizardry, so in that sense, arguing about it is about as classic D&D as you can get! :)

Gygax never liked psionics; that's pretty well known. He always wished it hadn't been included, and continued to argue against it in D&D.


..... which means all those people arguing against the inclusion? Bunch of traditionalist grognards.
 

Always liked Psionics, I suppose it's because they feel very Jedi Knight to me. Psionics as a sub-category of spells seems like a cheap way to make a Psion.

Psychic Warrior was a blast to play, the dice are no less confusing than those blood-hunter dice are, or the grit points and firearm misfire crap. The latest UA of psychic warrior I enjoyed a good deal, with the feats you could add on, I felt like I had some psionic ability to use every turn, felt like I had alot of utility outside of combat as well, honestly didn't feel like a fighter at all anymore. My only qualm was the stat Psionics played off of, for Sorc, Rogue, Fighter all seemed to be different, and some of the feats were a bit rough in that regard. Really looking forward to Tasha's Cauldron.
 

Azzy

KMF DM
Gygax never liked psionics; that's pretty well known. He always wished it hadn't been included, and continued to argue against it in D&D.


..... which means all those people arguing against the inclusion? Bunch of traditionalist grognards.

Actually both those arguing for and against its inclusion are both traditionalist grognards at this point. There are those that agree with Gygax's views and those that disagree with his views, but both views have a similar vintage. ¯\(ツ)

I'm curious what Dave Arneson's views on this matter were.
 



Mistwell

Legend
Sure, but it is how it works by RAW. How do you do magic if there's no interface between the PCs and wherever magic comes from?

Descriptions of how things work are not rules. The rules are the mechanics. The rest is just default setting details. I've never heard any of what you are describing as "rules as written" and I don't know what you gain by continuing to claim there is some special "RAW" association with those color details.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
Heh heh... so amongst all this talk about needing to add psions as a class we also have everyone throwing away all the existing classes at the same time "Don't need the Sorcerer!" "Don't need the Cleric!" "Don't need the Warlock!" "Game only needs 7 classes!" "Game only needs 4 classes!"

And people wonder why WotC doesn't take all of these "requests/demands" seriously and just produces some baseline, standardized stuff for everyone to use instead.

If people spent as much time designing the class they want as they did complaining about WotC not designing it for them... they'd all be better off. At least they'd have something they wanted to play. :)
My theory that CLERIC and WARLOCK are the same thing is a tongue in cheek response to those saying a PSION and a SORCERER are the same thing. I am not actually advocating that any class be removed and in fact DO advocate for there being many more base classes that should be developed by now.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
It's not really standard D&D, but a game in which magic is something you learn about and acquire over the course of play would be very interesting.
Should anyone want to explore this concept, I'd recommend investigating (get it?) Call of Cthulhu. It wouldn't take much work to dial the setting back to middle ages timeframe.

We had a fun campaign set in Italy during the renaissance. My character was a poorly skilled wannabe rival to Leonardo Da Vinci. Over the course of the campaign his main contributions to society were....

1. Inventing something akin to the giant old school deep sea diving deathtrap suits.

2. Making it a habit to record lifelike drawings of all the strange creatures he encountered along with the facts we learned about them. This book went on to become an "official" book we added to our rules as something a 1920s character might find a copy of....compete with the resulting sanity check and Mythos Knowledge gain upon reading it.

3. Once, in a drunken revelry, my character accidentally drank some ectoplasm he had collected from some incorporeal Cthulhu beastie. I told the GM that I wanted to "dance off the end of the mantle ignoring the fall". He had me roll the dice and I scored a 01, the equivalent of a crit on a d100. The GM described that as I stepped off the mantle into the air these incorporate beasties phased in just enough to support my feet and I was able to levitate by dancing on their backs. I had inadvertantly self discovered the levitate spell that required downing the ectoplasm as a material component. The spell itself existed in the books but my method of acquiring it was exactly how you describe in your post.
 

There is always an interface between me and the sound that will be music. Whether it's the air interfacing with my mouth to whistle, my air blowing into an instrument, my hands interfacing with my leg or a drum to create a beat, or what have you. Without an interface of some sort there can be no music.


Have you also house ruled the background magic to not be everywhere, or are magic dead areas non-existent?

Magic dead areas are non-existant. They break too much crap, and cause too many headaches with "Well, My paladin's aura doesn't say it is a magical effect suppressed by anti-magic."

And, if you are talking a bit of nonsense in the terms of music. The sounds is the movement of air. Your mouth is moving the air. There is no middle step where you mouth interfaces with something and that something moves the air. The physical thing that is the sound is created directly by your actions, not by an intermediary force.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
Magic dead areas are non-existant. They break too much crap, and cause too many headaches with "Well, My paladin's aura doesn't say it is a magical effect suppressed by anti-magic."
Odd, because a possible massive explosion that breaks the weave and creates a wild or null magic zone when they die is a key component to how Warforged interact with my world.
 

My game has no weave. I don't care what the rulebooks say. WOTC can't tell me what exists in my own game. I use the mechanics of the game (except where I choose to change them), but there is no official crunch for me. Period. End of Statement. IMNSHO opinion, D&D Lore is inane and uninspiring. I use only the rules.
 

Odd, because a possible massive explosion that breaks the weave and creates a wild or null magic zone when they die is a key component to how Warforged interact with my world.

That is cool man, I have no real judgement for people who like it, but everytime I've ever seen it, it starts interacting strangely with an aspect of the lore and begins forcing me to make up things on the fly.

Far easier to just not have it come up. I can deal with magic items and spells in other ways.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
That is cool man, I have no real judgement for people who like it, but everytime I've ever seen it, it starts interacting strangely with an aspect of the lore and begins forcing me to make up things on the fly.

Far easier to just not have it come up. I can deal with magic items and spells in other ways.
My campaign basics is "What if every D&D humanoid was mapped to some real world WW2 country or concept?" Warforged were the wonder weapon (atomic bombs) invented by the dwarves (America) to put an earlier end to the war without risking lives.

Unforseen consequences due to the corruption of the building process by an aboleth meant the warforged developed freewill AND have a small chance of a massive detonation leaving behind magic fallout if they are killed.

Once the world saw the danger that a warforged is, the dwarves semi quietly have been paying to have them "returned" so they could safely be decomissioned. Similarly an underground freedom movement has sprung up to protect them.

Blatant stealing of world history and the Fallout franchise combined with a D&D twist.

The devestated areas are avoided when possible and the high cleric and wizard minds of the time are dedicated to cleaning them up. Most are located in the middle of an area of grassy plains on the site of a battlefield so it's easy to only include them when a plot focuses on them.
 

Shardstone

Adventurer
To be honest, this seems like a punt. That may not be a bad idea.

Psionics is now a descriptive term, like Arcane and Divine. We still think of certain classes as "arcane" (wizard, bard, sorcerer, warlock) or "divine" (cleric, druid, paladin, ranger), but really, those terms are holdovers from earlier editions and fluff; both terms are mechanically meaningless. Further, classes are mutable: a sorcerer or warlock might normally be considered arcane casters, but the divine soul and pact of the celestial make them divine powered with no change to their mechanics. Lastly, plenty of abilities could be considered Arcane or Divine without actually being spells; a cleric'c channel divinity or a Eldritch Knight's weapon bind.

Psionics is the same: it describes the power source of certain casters and effects without changing the mechanics. An aberrant soul sorcerer is the psionic equivalent of the divine soul; a change in power source with some new subclass features and spell options but ultimately mechanically the same. Certain powers and abilities (like a mind flayers psychic blast or a kalshatar's telepathy) are likewise "psionic flavored" but the descriptor has no mechanical bearing.

Perhaps down the road, a full psionic spellcaster class will come to exist (Dark Sun?) But I think it will be a spellcaster and not a new mechanic. However, until then think of psionics as fluff, not rules much like how arcane and divine are fluff and not rules.

This convinced me. I'm ok with psionics as spells AND class features (or feats or w/e), with the features having a shared mechanical system. For my own "alternate PHB" of homebrewed classes, the psionic class feature mechanic is eldritch invocations that can be pumped up with psi points for more effects. That + spells has made suitable psionics for me.
 

Shardstone

Adventurer
Another interesting idea would be to say, in the description of a psionic spell, that counterspell rolls have disadvantage against them. That would make the spells pretty interesting, IMO.
 

see

Adventurer
That was the whole point of psionics from the start....to be separate from arcane and divine magic.
No, the point of psionics "from the start" (1976's Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry) was to be a handful of odd powers held by characters with otherwise-normal classes, plus a psionic combat system.

If your proposed psionics system doesn't have psionic combat, and it does have psionic classes or subclasses, you've entirely abandoned what psionics was "from the start" in favor of doing something radically different.

Which is fine, but don't pretend you're channeling the true nature of D&D psionics, rather than saying, "I feel psionics should be X, not Y".
 

No, the point of psionics "from the start" (1976's Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry) was to be a handful of odd powers held by characters with otherwise-normal classes, plus a psionic combat system.

If your proposed psionics system doesn't have psionic combat, and it does have psionic classes or subclasses, you've entirely abandoned what psionics was "from the start" in favor of doing something radically different.

Which is fine, but don't pretend you're channeling the true nature of D&D psionics, rather than saying, "I feel psionics should be X, not Y".
Wasn't the psionic combat system some awful mess? Like a five-way game of scissors-paper-stone where you only know a couple of the shapes and you can't start the rest of the combat until you've played ten rounds of this?

Do you believe that having that would be a good idea?
 

Shardstone

Adventurer
And apparently you are a fan of Nickelback, because you follow the band along and keep listening to their music, but for some reason continue to hope they will change their sound down the line.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with liking Nickelback. Hundreds of thousands of us like Nickelback. But at some point you should accept them for who they are and the music they make, or else stop listening and try a different band. :)
This is kind of off topic but...

If I accept that WotC puts out medicore to above average content, does that mean I'm allowed to criticize it and call it what it is? I'll proudly admit to liking some mediocre things, but your post just leaves me scratching my head a bit. Is WotC actually just immune to criticism?
 

Azzy

KMF DM
Wasn't the psionic combat system some awful mess? Like a five-way game of scissors-paper-stone where you only know a couple of the shapes and you can't start the rest of the combat until you've played ten rounds of this?

Yes, that is an apt summary.

Do you believe that having that would be a good idea?
I don't get the impression that they do think it's a good idea. Instead, I think they're trying to convey that what supposed "traditionalists" are claiming aren't necessarily factual and that psionics in D&D aren't as immutable as some claim. I could be wrong, though.
 

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