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Thread: Raising ML

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    Default Raising ML

    There is already this great thread on raising CL, but how many ways are there to raise manifester level for psionics?

    This is a work in progress, and I am editing in information as we go:

    Feats
    Practiced Manifester: +4, up to the level of your hit dice (just as with Practiced Spellcaster).
    Overchannel: +1 to +3, taking damage. (Talented will eliminate the damage for overchanneling low-level powers.) Does not stack with Wildsurge (below).
    Stygian Archon: +1 to negative energy powers.
    Envoy Cognizance: use elemental envoy to gain +1 to powers with the same energy descriptor.

    Class Abilities
    Wildsurge Wilder class ability: +1 to +6(!!), at the risk of psychic enervation; cannot be stacked with overchannel.
    Life Mantle: this gives +1 ML for powers from this mantle.

    Items
    (none)


    New Section: reducing PP cost. Reducing PP cost is essentially like a spell caster getting more spells, so while not the same as boosting ML, these are still very important for psionic characters:

    Feats
    Earth Power: lowers pp cost by 1.
    Midnight Augmentation (MoI 38): reduces the power point cost of augmenting a power for each point of essentia invested; specific to a single power per day.
    Metapower: lowers pp cost by 2 for a selected power + metapsionic combination (to a minimum of +0 for the metapsionic enhancement).

    Class Abilities
    Dominant Ideal: Ardent ACF: reduce augmentation cost by 2 pp for powers in one (dominant) mantle.

    Items
    Torc of Power Preservation: lowers the cost of manifesting powers by 1.
    Power Link shards (MoE 115): these do not actually reduce power point cost, but they do give a +2 pp augmentation boost, which may even exceed your ML limit. (As a character could have multiple embedded Power Links and draw upon all of them for a single power, this could rapidly become very, very broken.)


    On the subject of whether CL boosts also apply to ML:
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    Though not explicitly called out in the spell descriptions or magic item descriptions, spells, spell-like abilities, and magic items that could potentially affect psionics do affect psionics.
    SRD
    Last edited by Stegyre; 2011-01-20 at 02:05 PM. Reason: removed note of dispute between CPsi and Mind's Eye description of Life Mantle. Either I originally misread it, or Mind's Eye was subsequently edited to conform to CPsi.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Torc of Power Preservation: lowers the cost of manifesting powers by 1. Whether that allows you to augment a power to more than you otherwise could is unclear.
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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Violet Octopus View Post
    Torc of Power Preservation: lowers the cost of manifesting powers by 1. Whether that allows you to augment a power to more than you otherwise could is unclear.
    Very good. I had forgotten that priceless gem, but does anyone want to weigh in on the RAW question: does a torque allow one to exceed the ML cap (which effectively does raise ML)?

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    There's also the Earth Power feat from Races of Stone that does the same. I believe they stack.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    RAW, any spell effect or magic item that raises caster level without specifying a type of spellcasting (Arcane or Divine) affects Psionics, so a good portion of the stuff listed in that thread will affect a Psion too.

    One thing though: The Sage ruled that if a Manifester some how managed to qualify for a Reserve feat, only the CL increase would apply to his powers. He wouldn't be able to use it's effect unless he also had spellcasting abilities. This contradicts the RAW, as feats do not apply to the Magic-Psionic Transparency unless they say so. Make of that what you will.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    Very good. I had forgotten that priceless gem, but does anyone want to weigh in on the RAW question: does a torque allow one to exceed the ML cap (which effectively does raise ML)?
    It really depends on how you parse the steps of the rules:
    1) If Standard Cost is determined before you can augment, then it decreases the cost by 1 before you augment, letting you get +1 more.
    2) If you choose the total cost of the power and then apply the Torc, then it merely saves you a power point.

    If I was to guess which one is intended, I'd say the second.

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    smile Re: Raising ML

    This thread is made of win. The torc does work but its been errata'd to be 3/day.

    The incarnum feat midnight augmentation will help also (it lowers costs). If you are going to always use a linked power or some other metapower, there is a feat to permanently reduce cost that way.
    Last edited by PlzBreakMyCmpAn; 2009-10-03 at 10:14 AM.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinfire Titan View Post
    RAW, any spell effect or magic item that raises caster level without specifying a type of spellcasting (Arcane or Divine) affects Psionics, so a good portion of the stuff listed in that thread will affect a Psion too.
    That's great, but can you get me a citation? (Either a link or a book+page would be great.) As you may notice from the OP, I'm very big on documentation, so no one needs to take my word for something.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sinfire Titan View Post
    One thing though: The Sage ruled that if a Manifester some how managed to qualify for a Reserve feat, only the CL increase would apply to his powers. He wouldn't be able to use it's effect unless he also had spellcasting abilities. This contradicts the RAW, as feats do not apply to the Magic-Psionic Transparency unless they say so. Make of that what you will.
    I agree with you on RAW, which is why I took the position I did in the OP. Do you have the Sage citation? I'd like to take a look at it. Maybe I can at least add it to the OP for consideration.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by PlzBreakMyCmpAn View Post
    This thread is made of win. The torc does work but its been errata'd to be 3/day.
    Not errated, there are now two Torcs.
    Torc A (XPH) is more expensive but unlimited.
    Torc B (MIC) is cheaper but 3/day.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    That's great, but can you get me a citation? (Either a link or a book+page would be great.) As you may notice from the OP, I'm very big on documentation, so no one needs to take my word for something.
    SRD, Psionic Powers Overview. Psionic-Magic Transparency:

    Psionics-Magic Transparency

    Though not explicitly called out in the spell descriptions or magic item descriptions, spells, spell-like abilities, and magic items that could potentially affect psionics do affect psionics.
    A spell effect or magic item that increases caster level without specifying Arcane or Divine affects Psionic powers.

    I agree with you on RAW, which is why I took the position I did in the OP. Do you have the Sage citation? I'd like to take a look at it. Maybe I can at least add it to the OP for consideration.
    That I don't have. Google may be able to find it.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    Not errated, there are now two Torcs.
    Torc A (XPH) is more expensive but unlimited.
    Torc B (MIC) is cheaper but 3/day.
    Incorrect. MIC replaced XPH as a source for items. The MIC one is the only one that technically exists.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Where did you read that?
    That seems more an assumption than a fact.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    Where did you read that?
    That seems more an assumption than a fact.
    It may take a little digging, but I think Gralamin is right on this: MIC explicitly states that it has recalculated existing items. (If memory serves, the statement is early on, and is in the context of, "Please don't be surprised that some of your items are now more or less expensive than they used to be.")

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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    Where did you read that?
    That seems more an assumption than a fact.
    Read page 3 to 4 of the MIC. Notice how it states multiple times that it has revised items. Notice how the Sidebar on page 4 states that the new item is to be used instead of the old ones.

    There is a more precise version somewhere, I just can't be bothered to find it.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    If magic-psionics transparency is in effect, then could you pick practised spellcaster and boost you ML by another 4?

    Reducing cost only reduces cost it doesn't raise ML for the sake of manifester checks.

    That being said, it does allow you to put more PP into augmenting or applying a metapsionic feat, which could affect the DC, damage.

    But your ML for overcoming PR/SR is still based on your ML, so wildsurge, overchannel, and Practised manifester are really the only way to "really" increase MLs. Duration and range are the main things that are affected by ML and they would not be effected by lowered cost either.

    Just to add other stuff that cut costs:
    dominant ideal ACF of ardents: cuts augmentation and metapsionic costs by 2.
    Metapower: permanently apply a metapsionic feat on a power and reduce costs by 2.

    Both from CPsi.
    Last edited by Samb; 2009-10-03 at 12:42 PM.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Samb View Post
    If magic-psionics transparency is in effect, then could you pick practised spellcaster and boost you ML by another 4?
    Only if you've lost a lot of ML's somewhere; the up-to-HD cap is still in effect, so you can't really boost your ML so much as catch up. I don't think there are any psionic classes that allow for something like the Wild Mage trick.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Samb View Post
    If magic-psionics transparency is in effect, then could you pick practised spellcaster and boost you ML by another 4?
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    Psionics-Magic Transparency

    Though not explicitly called out in the spell descriptions or magic item descriptions, spells, spell-like abilities, and magic items that could potentially affect psionics do affect psionics.
    As Sinfire earlier said, no reference to feats here. So no dice on the Practiced Spellcaster, I'm guessing.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by tyckspoon View Post
    Only if you've lost a lot of ML's somewhere; the up-to-HD cap is still in effect, so you can't really boost your ML so much as catch up. I don't think there are any psionic classes that allow for something like the Wild Mage trick.
    Yes, but oh, how it can catch you up.

    For example:

    Wizard 4 / Ardent 1

    Take Practiced Manifester at level 3.

    When you take your level 1 of Ardent, you're ML 5, and can select powers up to level 3, due to the wording of their power acquisition.

    Next level, Cerebremancer FTW.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixRivers View Post
    Yes, but oh, how it can catch you up.

    For example:

    Wizard 4 / Ardent 1

    Take Practiced Manifester at level 3.

    When you take your level 1 of Ardent, you're ML 5, and can select powers up to level 3, due to the wording of their power acquisition.

    Next level, Cerebremancer FTW.
    Or ardent12/warmind8 to gain 2 BAB (and that extra attack) and sweeping strike.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    The 4th-level LEM Utterance "Caster Lens" (Tome of Magic, obviously) explicitly says that it boosts either CL or ML by 2 for three rounds. You don't even need to invoke transparency; it explicitly gives you ML.

    Of course, that means you have to have a mid-to-high Truenamer on your team. Which is probably a bad idea. (Yes, I'm playing a 12th level Truenamer right now. No, this doesn't mean you should. Trust me.) But if you have access to a truly perfect Magic Mart (for example, in Sigil), you could get a wand of it.
    In the Beginning Was the Word, and the Word Was Suck: A Guide to Truenamers

    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Gentlefolk, learn from Zaq's example, and his suffering. Remember, seven out of eleven players who use truenamer lose their ability to taste ice cream.
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    Default Re: Raising ML

    I really don't think you can stack Practiced Spellcaster with Practiced Manifester. The transparency rule is a bit vague on any application of CL boosts to ML, but I could readily see something like Harmonic Chorus (one of my personal favorites) boosting ML to the same extent it does CL.

    But for the two Practiced feats, you have a psionic version that covers the very same ground as the spell version. YMMV, but I'd be puzzled if most GMs allowed this.

    (For those who haven't noticed, I continue to update the OP. More suggestions continue to be welcome, and discussion is always welcome: one thing I don't require is for people to agree with me.)

    EDIT:
    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    The 4th-level LEM Utterance "Caster Lens" (Tome of Magic, obviously) explicitly says that it boosts either CL or ML by 2 for three rounds. . . . Of course, that means you have to have a mid-to-high Truenamer on your team.
    Now I've got to lay hold of ToM and read up on Truenamers, something I've never liked from the moment I heard about them. Curse you, Zaq! You and your little dog Toto, too!
    Last edited by Stegyre; 2009-10-04 at 06:47 PM.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    I'm actually working on a build (not all powerful, but meh) which needs a high ML, specifically a minimum of 23 at lvl 20. It makes it harder that all psionic PrCs take away ML (this particular one takeas away two).

    However, I've noticed that using practiced manifester to negate the two-ML gap, I can raise my ML quite high using the following and applying the magic-psionic transparency rule:
    Illumian: The Krau sigil gives +2 ML
    Ioun Stone (Orange Prism) gives +1 ML per stone, 30 000 gp each
    Primitive Caster fron Frostburn: +3 ML (psionic powers naturally lack all three components, allowing you to add them)
    Metamagic Vigor: +1 ML, but you need Psionic Meditation to keep focused
    Overchannel: +3 ML, offset the hp damage with Vigor
    Total from race and three feats: +9 ML, add as many Ioun Stones as you can afford.
    Don't take anything I say too seriously.


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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Here's another item that is related but doesn't fit into raising ML or reducing cost.

    Power link shards from magic of eberron allows you to gives you an extra 2PP on manifesting powers beyond your ML. Usable 3/day, but you can decide how often to apply it (+6 PP once a day), and if you have multiples of this you can stack them as well.

    Kalashtar only and these are very rare items since they can only be found in Xen'dirk, or if you are insane enough Argonnessen.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Norr View Post
    I'm actually working on a build (not all powerful, but meh) which needs a high ML, specifically a minimum of 23 at lvl 20.
    A number of comments:
    Quote Originally Posted by Norr View Post
    It makes it harder that all psionic PrCs take away ML (this particular one takeas away two).
    "All" psionic PrCs do not take away ML. Cerebremancer (XPH), Soul Manifester, and Anarchic Initiate (CPsi) all grant full ML progression.

    Moreover, using Ardent as the psionic base class, along with Practiced Manifester, will give you full power progression. You still lose the power points and extra powers of the "lost" levels, but you are able to select 9th level powers at character level 17.
    Quote Originally Posted by Norr View Post
    Ioun Stone (Orange Prism) gives +1 ML per stone, 30 000 gp each
    You cannot stack multiple bonuses from the same source. You can get +1 ML from one Orange Ioun Stone; no more.
    Quote Originally Posted by Norr View Post
    Primitive Caster fron Frostburn: +3 ML (psionic powers naturally lack all three components, allowing you to add them)Metamagic Vigor: +1 ML, but you need Psionic Meditation to keep focused
    Feats are not subject to the transparency rule: they are not spells, spell-like abilities, or items. Neither Primitive Caster nor Metamagic Vigor will apply to ML.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Stegyre View Post
    "All" psionic PrCs do not take away ML. Cerebremancer (XPH), Soul Manifester, and Anarchic Initiate (CPsi) all grant full ML progression.
    Cerebremancer requires a dip out of psionic progression to pick up spells, Soul Manifester is from a web enhancement and thus poorly known (also the feat requirements to pick up all those melds are awful), and Anarchic Initiate was listed as the single exception.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Foryn Gilnith View Post
    Cerebremancer requires a dip out of psionic progression to pick up spells, Soul Manifester is from a web enhancement and thus poorly known (also the feat requirements to pick up all those melds are awful), and Anarchic Initiate was listed as the single exception.
    You don't need to lose Psionic Progression.

    Wizard 1 (precocious apprentice) / Ardent 3 / Cerebremancer 10

    Provides, with Practiced Manifester, no loss of manifester progression at level 2-14.

    Even with Psion, you still have the ML of a 13th level manifester, which is more or less the same, as you can augment the powers to 13pp, which makes many low level powers as good, if not better than, their high level counterparts.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    You still had the progression taken away through the process of qualifying for the prestige class. You can get it back, and much more easily than a caster could; but the initial statement was valid. Your point about augmentation is equally valid, as psions gain much more from higher ML than casters do from CL. In that context, the initial statement that ML is taken away almost seems misleading.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by Foryn Gilnith View Post
    You still had the progression taken away through the process of qualifying for the prestige class. You can get it back, and much more easily than a caster could; but the initial statement was valid. Your point about augmentation is equally valid, as psions gain much more from higher ML than casters do from CL. In that context, the initial statement that ML is taken away almost seems misleading.
    Actually, if you take 2 levels of wizard, and during those, select Practiced manifester, and then take a level of Ardent, you start able to choose level 2 powers (For ML 3). Ardent is the only psionic class that chooses powers based on Manifester Level for the class, not Class level.

    What you really lose out on is Caster level on the wizard side.
    Last edited by PhoenixRivers; 2009-11-15 at 08:53 PM.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixRivers View Post
    Actually, if you take 2 levels of wizard, and during those, select Practiced manifester, and then take a level of Ardent, you start able to choose level 2 powers (For ML 3). Ardent is the only psionic class that chooses powers based on Manifester Level for the class, not Class level.

    What you really lose out on is Caster level on the wizard side.
    Not entirely true. Ardents still lose number of power and PP pool due to dipping. So a wizard 2/ardent xx would still lose 2 levels worth of PP and 2 powers.

    And while not a base class, the Cognition Thief also chooses telepath only powers based on ML instead of class level.
    Last edited by Samb; 2009-11-15 at 10:46 PM.

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    Default Re: Raising ML

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixRivers View Post
    Actually, if you take 2 levels of wizard, and during those, select Practiced manifester, and then take a level of Ardent, you start able to choose level 2 powers (For ML 3). Ardent is the only psionic class that chooses powers based on Manifester Level for the class, not Class level.
    No. If you read the Ardent description, you will see that it requires you to choose 1st level powers at your first Ardent level. The special mechanic for qualifying for higher-level powers only kicks in at the later levels. (I wish it were otherwise, but that is RAW.)

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