Unearthed Arcana Unearthed Arcana Revisits Psionics

The latest Unearthed Arcana from WotC revisits some psionic rules! “Shine with the power of the...

The latest Unearthed Arcana from WotC revisits some psionic rules! “Shine with the power of the mind in this installment of Unearthed Arcana! Today we revisit several psi-themed options that we released in the past few months. Studying your feedback on those options, we’ve crafted this new collection of subclasses, spells, and feats, found in the PDF below.“

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cbwjm

Seb-wejem
On topic, I am totally underwhelmed by the Psionic Sorcerer.

It's one of those rare 'take this archetype at 1st level' arcehtypes, so they had a lot of room to play with switching Cha for Int, removing components entirely, and making it feel a lot more like a Psion.
Don't think of it as a Psion. Think of it as a sorcerer who has some psionic power to alter and adapt their spells.
 

cbwjm

Seb-wejem
Not quite. The mystic version is abandoned. Whether or not their might be a psion class in the future is still up in the air.

[Edited to add] But if they can get away with not making one, I bet they won't make one, so if you want one, make sure to let them know on any relevant occasion (surveys, social media, chatting with Jeremy Crawford at a con, etc).
I guess it's possible that they'll make a class. Perhaps they are testing the mechanics of the psi dice to see if people like it before creating it.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
Wow, guess I really missed the boat to actually talk about yesterdays UA article.

I do want to say that I was underwhelmed by the Soul Knife, it felt really weak for me and it's most useless ability is the one it is named for which is just odd, but very early in this thread someone mentioned letting them roll the Psi Talent Die instead of their weapon die, and I kind of like that. Doesn't fix all the problems, but it at least is a place to start for one.

Give them an option to risk their psy die as the weapon damage, with the bonus action not boosting or diminishing, but always a level lower. This does let them hit for 1d12 and 1d10 at high levels, but that is perfectly fine for me.

I'm also tempted to let all these subclasses grow beyond their limit with their talent dice, instead of capping. Though maybe it automatically degrades when they next use it, just gives something for rolling a 1 when you are already at your normal max (not sure what to do for 1d12s that wouldn't get a little too borked)

I like the Psy Knight, though I am curious about using Telekinetic Movement in combat. Not sure how I would handle that yet.

Not a huge fan of the sorcerer, just doesn't get that much that is interesting before level 18, and even that ability could be a bit lackluster if they are on a low die.
 

cbwjm

Seb-wejem
One thing I didn't like about the soul knife is that I see no reason that the bonus action knife attack is a d4. I'd keep it the same d6 as the initial blade since I can see people easily forgetting that the die size is different.
 

Wow, guess I really missed the boat to actually talk about yesterdays UA article.

I do want to say that I was underwhelmed by the Soul Knife, it felt really weak for me and it's most useless ability is the one it is named for which is just odd, but very early in this thread someone mentioned letting them roll the Psi Talent Die instead of their weapon die, and I kind of like that. Doesn't fix all the problems, but it at least is a place to start for one.

It turns sneak attack weapon damage into Psychic damage. At 9th level they're also shockingly accurate, and at 17th level they stun what they hit.

Watch out for Wizards with Mind blank cast (immunity to Psychic damage).

Bear Totem barbarians will run away from you screaming though.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
It turns sneak attack weapon damage into Psychic damage. At 9th level they're also shockingly accurate, and at 17th level they stun what they hit.

Watch out for Wizards with Mind blank cast (immunity to Psychic damage).

Bear Totem barbarians will run away from you screaming though.

Players don't often fight Bear Totems though.

Most monsters from levels 3 to 9 don't have resistance to normal damage, so a shortsword and a dagger accomplish the same effect. Take a level of fighter and you get the same two-weapon fighting benefit.

But, the real truth I would find, is that a d6 weapon is just not going to stay the rogues main attack. There are too many options for doing far better damage. You can kind of add a Bless by 9th level, which makes you a little more accurate, but you are probably using another weapon anyways so it won't matter until you start missing. And then it downgrades so you get three uses of increased accuracy total. And the stun is just really crappy, if it even comes up.

the other 3rd level abilities are decent for a rogue. More skill monkeying, and the 1 mile telepathy is great, but I see those blades as getting dropped and never used quite quickly for other options.
 

Players don't often fight Bear Totems though.
And then it downgrades so you get three uses of increased accuracy total.

You get a die upgrade for every 1 you roll on your Psi dice, and you can use a bonus action 1/ Long rest to get a full refresh.

So it would be considerably more than 3 uses per day.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
You get a die upgrade for every 1 you roll on your Psi dice, and you can use a bonus action 1/ Long rest to get a full refresh.

So it would be considerably more than 3 uses per day.

You are right about the refresh, but think about when the Soul knife uses their pyschic die

1) When you fail a skill roll for a skill you are proficient in
2) When you establish a telepathy network
3) The Homing Strike ability (which always downgrades no matter what you roll)
4) Teleportation (which always downgrades and is never rolled)

So, either spam setting up telepathy or fail a bunch of skill checks. Other than that, you can't get your die back up

Edit: Which, compared to the Psy Knight, who will be rolling that die in every single combat round, really highlights a major difference between how this die is used for the two classes. One rolls it consistently, allowing it to vary. The other almost never rolls it and most of their abilities downgrade it automatically
 

J-H

Hero
So how do we best optimize the Psi Knight? So far, my best idea is to make a DEX+INT fighter with a shield for AC 19 (leather armor = 12, dex +5, shield +2), which is 1 lower than full plate+shield, and then take Elven Accuracy. Your first hit each round uses Telekinetic Strike+Psionic Thrust to force a STR save vs. knockdown, and then each following attack has Elven triple advantage.

I suppose you'd have to add PAM and a spear to get a bonus-action extra attack to benefit from this further, and I'm not convinced it keeps up with, say, GWM, aside from the shield's AC bonus.
 

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