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    Default [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    The Psychic Warrior Handbook
    (A Guide to Psychological Warfare)




    Contents
    Spoiler
    Show
    I. Introduction
    -- Rating
    -- Sources
    II. At the Crossroads
    -- Why You should play a Psychic Warrior
    -- Why You shouldn't play a Psychic Warrior
    -- The Frame
    -- -- The Good
    -- -- The Bad
    -- -- The Ugly
    III. Party-Role
    -- What to look for
    -- Combat Roles
    -- -- Melee
    -- -- Ranged
    -- Comparisons
    -- -- Vs. the Duskblade
    -- -- Vs. the Hexblade
    -- -- Vs. the Tome of Battle Classes
    IV. Abilities
    V. Races
    -- Psionic
    -- Core
    -- Other
    VI. Alternate Class Features
    -- Mantled Warrior
    -- Skilled City Dweller
    -- Soulbound Weapon
    -- Class Feature disguised as Feat: Psicrystal
    -- -- Creation and Destruction
    -- -- BAB
    -- -- Feats
    -- -- Use
    VII. Skills
    VIII. Feats
    -- Tips
    -- Dexterity-Based Route
    -- Strength-Based Route
    -- Ranged Route
    -- Shields
    -- Natural and Unarmed Attacks
    -- Psionics
    -- Miscellaneous
    IX. Powers
    -- Tips
    -- 1st Level
    -- 2nd Level
    -- 3rd Level
    -- 4th Level
    -- 5th Level
    -- 6th Level
    -- Powers from other Lists
    X. Multiclassing
    -- Tips
    -- Base Classes
    -- -- Monk
    -- -- Tome of Battle Classes
    -- Prestige Classes
    -- -- Psychic Weapon Master
    -- -- Sanctified Mind
    -- -- Slayer
    -- Psychic Warrior as Dip
    -- -- Swift Hunter
    XI. Items
    -- Armor and Weapons
    -- Psionic Items
    -- Miscellaneous
    XII. Builds
    -- Basic
    -- Charging
    -- Grappling
    -- Masochistic Style
    -- Ranged
    -- Sword & Board
    -- Two-Weapon Fighting Style
    -- Tripping
    XIII. To Do List and Update History


    I. Introduction:
    (Psychological Warfare, the Modern Art of War)


    Beware of the sophisticated warrior with the mind powers and the big stick!

    "If you want to master the art of psychological warfare, your first lesson will be outsmarting the enemy with a surprise hit with a really big stick you just happen to shoulder. Nothing will destroy the enemy's morals more than a square hit in the face."
    -- Excerpt from the Manuscripts of the late Magnumopus, a Grandchampion of Psychological Warfare


    The psychic warrior is a very cool class in terms of flavor. Mechanically speaking, it's kind of boring however: Its only class feature beside its manifesting ability, are its bonus feats. Fortunately the psychic warrior really has a very good powerlist with powers other manifesters cry for. This class is able to do its job and it does it really well -- actually I doubt anyone does it better. You won't create your own demi-plane, but why bother when you can take on anybody face to face?

    This guide shall help you with building your character (there are a lot of different fighting styles and options) and provide a quick reference for veterans. Especially the commented power selection should prove helpful. Essentially, this means that you'll find information useful for practical and theoretical optimization in this handbook, but it makes no claim to be exhaustive.

    If you come across a term or an abbreviation you don't know, please check out this thread for an answer: Common Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Terms.

    Acknowledgements: Special thanks to dobu, who has supported me with critical feedback and helpful ideas throughout the development of this handbook.

    Rating: Perfect, Good, Okay, Bad.
    (highly subjective, of course)

    Sources
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-12-01 at 08:19 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    II. At the Crossroads: The Hard Facts about the Psychic Warrior
    (Psychological Warfare in a Nutshell)



    "Know that not all of you who seek this knowledge, were born with the cold mind of the psychological warrior."
    -- Magnumopus (verbally transmitted)


    No class in DnD is made for everybody, and what makes one player go wild, may leave others cold. Try to decide your take on the psychic warrior along the following guidelines and facts.

    • Why You should play a Psychic Warrior
      Because you want to be a tough guy who has the mind power(s) to help her/him in combat.

      A psychic warrior's powers make her/him flexible and to some extent useful in non-combat situations. Another side-effect of the manifesting ability is that the psychic warrior is extremely self-sufficient and does not rely on his spell-casting buddies to buff her/him up in order to be effective in his job.

      You can create builds with very good defenses, and with the right selection of powers and feats, you are more than capable of being a real tank. If you don't want to be in melee, there are unique ranged options open for psychic warriors. And as a sidenote, with their powers, psychic warriors are pretty good for emulating super heroes.

      => You play this class, because you love self-buffing and hitting things.

    • Why You shouldn't play a Psychic Warrior
      Because you want to be able to alter the world and use your powers directly on your foes.

      You cannot accomplish these feats. You are always a (cumulative) step behind in highest power level and you won't be able to focus on your manifesting ability (wisdom) like a psion, wilder or ardent can. If you want to be viable in hand-to-hand combat but really hate the idea of losing so much manifesting power, play an ardent.

      Besides, you cannot fill the role of the skillful, secondary martial character. You lack the skillpoints, class skills and class features for this job and will always fill the iconic role of the martial character.



    A Quick Spotlight on the Frame

    In order to finalize the exposure of the dirty truth about the psychic warrior, we are going to examine the class' core features:

    • The Good
      Good Fortitude Save -- A high fortitude save is extremely important for warrior types.
      Bonus Feats -- You get to select bonus feats from two great lists: Fighter bonus feats and psionic feats. It's a very boring "class feature", however.
      Manifesting -- This is what makes you unique. Psychic warriors get powers from a surprisingly diversified and highly exclusive list. The problem is that you will be behind in power level and are very short on fuel (i.e. powerpoints). As a result, you cannot afford to lose manifester levels (there are of course exceptions). Thus remember: Manifesting is your most important ability!

    • The Bad
      Medium Base Attack Bonus -- You are a class which will, no matter what, rely on attack rolls. Fortunately, your powers help you out in terms of total attack bonus, but it really hurts that you normally won't get a fourth attack.
      D8 Hit Die -- This means that you should aim for a score of 14 in constitution to have enough hit points for the front line.
      Skill List -- Your only real bright spot is autohypnosis. If possible, swap ride for tumble via skilled city dweller and you get another one, but even then you will be stuck with these two and concentration.

    • The Ugly
      Bad Reflex and Will Saves -- Since you will typically ignore dexterity, your reflex save will be extremely low in most cases. At least your will save profits from your wisdom score which you will need for manifesting. But as a compensation, you can select powers to boost your saves.
      2 Skillpoints/Level -- One of your skillpoints is locked up in concentration and typically you won't have a high intelligence score.
      No Unique Class Features -- This is really disappointing and one of the reasons (base attack bonus being the other) why people sacrifice a level of manifesting and a feat slot for the slayer and/or the sanctified mind prestige classes.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-11-22 at 10:09 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    III. The Psychic Warrior's Party-Role
    (Psychological Warfare has several subgroups, e.g. the vanguard, the rearguard)



    "The vanguard went to help the rear, and i stayed at the front back here, because after all psychological warfare..."
    -- Magnumopus (confirmed citation)


    You have shown enough interest in this class to read on, thus the point has come to shape the mold for your character.

    First off, you must know that psychic warriors can only fill a very specific field of roles in a party. This overview shall help you with finding your way through the countless options this game offers by now, and creating a character concept which fits your style and taste and also works.


    What you should look for...

    • Specialize not Generalize: DnD is a team game and features various encounters, puzzles and situations. While there are classes who potentially can do it all, it is not wise to actually try to. First, you will never be as good in a specific task as if you had narrowed your field of competences, and second, you may interfere with your teammates. Your feats and powers (end eventually your teammates and you) will complement each other way better and lead to a more satisfying result this way.

    • Don't be a One Trick Pony: This may seem to stand in contradiction to the previous point, but while you should specialize in a certain field, you should not solely focus on a single solution to the obstacles it poses. The circumstances won't always be the same and you may find yourself out of position if you are not flexible in your ways of dealing with them. Additionally, it's extremely boring for you and your friends. Thus, find a style and a field of competences for your character and then build around that by selecting corresponding but still differentiated feats and powers.

    • Powers are your Tools for the Job: Use them! Use your powers to get the job done, since that is the whole point in being a psychic warrior and not a fighter. While you should not waste them, you really don't want to be too tight with your powerpoints. It will ruin your fun. It's better to once in a while get into a situation where you have run out of power points, than always ending the adventuring day with your tank half full, because this means that you either make your party's life harder than necessary or that you lose out on a lot of fun or both. And of course, along with this comes the need to select powers which you will need. Chapter IX has more information on this.



    Combat Roles

    Normally you will fill the role of the melee guy. This means you are responsible for dishing out damage and taking it. You can of course build a more skillful character but the best psychic warrior powers are made for a straight-forward approach. Psychic warriors make excellent archers, however.

    You might be irritated by the medium base attack bonus and their rather weak hit die, but with all their powers, psychic warriors really don't care that much. They can get temporary hit points and are one of the few classes who really have a meaningful way of in-combat healing, and if you want a fourth attack, take the slayer or sanctified mind prestige classes.

    Anyway, the following routes are the most common for a psychic warrior:

    • Melee
      Spoiler
      Show

      The Basic Warrior -- You can make a viable build by selecting a lot of psionic feats and not specializing on a combat style. Very nice, if you want to get the best out of your powers.
      The Charger -- Yes, this route is open to you as well: Psionic lion's charge gives you the pounce ability. What I really don't like about it is, that it's sometimes problematic for the DM.
      The Gatling Smacker -- You have powers which let you grow natural weapons (2 claws, a bite and a tail). Combine this with two-weapon fighting, and maybe even with a tashalatora monk for greater flurry of blows and snap kick, for a load of attacks (you will be feat-starved with this route). The dark side of multiple attacks is (and people tend to keep this secret) that your attack bonus will suffer... a lot. After you have solved the trouble with your attack bonus, you must find a way to deal enough damage with every single attack to not be rendered useless by damage reduction.
      The Grappler -- With the expansion power (and a monk dip), you can be a devastating grappling machine. Sadly, freedom of movement is your bane.
      The Masochist -- You rely on combat reflexes, karmic strike and robilar's gambit to lure your enemy in a potentially devastating (if for your enemy or you, is yet to be decided) situation. You sacrifice defense for the possibility to get attacks of opportunity for melee attacks your foe makes, while your manifesting powers are keeping you alive. The stand still feat provides a much needed battlefield control option. This style is extremely feat intensive, however. Use claws of the vampire/vampiric weapon and the psicrystal+share pain+vigor-combo to ignore the incoming damage.
      The Smacker -- The King of Smack started it all.
      The Sword&Boarder -- Early on you can have an extremely high AC and thus survivability. At mid levels your lack of viable options kicks in and you will feel useless.
      The Tripper -- This style provides a lot of battlefield control, while dishing out reasonable amounts of damage. Use expansion, a reach weapon and knock-down to trip anything in a 20 foot range. This works extremely well with a tashalatora build, too. This style's advantage over the others is that it is (almost) always applicable and does not require as many feats, which leaves you more room for customization.
    • Ranged
      Spoiler
      Show

      The Archer -- Zen archery and the perfect archery power make strong arguments to consider this route for a psychic warrior. It allows you to keep your dexterity score low and still hit things, while keeping your strength score reasonably high for damage. All martial archers face a problem however: They are only supporting cast, as they don't fill any of the four iconic roles. So check with your teammates. Besides, archery demands a lot of feats, which makes multiclassing problematic.
      The Thrower -- Telekinetic boomerang for the win. This power alone makes the throwing style a fun option for the psychic warrior. While other throwers will try to find ways to disarm themselves ever faster, you are happy with two weapons (or even shields, hehe). But martial throwing builds come with the same baggage as archers (see above), and are even more feat-intensive.

      Check out the archery handbook by eldariel and the ultimate archer handbook by carnivore for detailled information.


    Remember that these roles are not meant to be limiting but helpful. They shall support you to do your job. You still can customize your approach by thinking outside the box and a creative use of powers.


    Comparisons

    There are other classes which compete for the same niche as the psychic warrior. The following comparisons shall spotlight the differences:

    • Vs. the Duskblade
      Spoiler
      Show
      The duskblade fills a role very similar to the psychic warrior. It's simply an arcane gish base class rather than a psionic one. There are some differences though.

      The duskblade has an overwhelming amount of spells but a rather mediocre spelllist. These spells are extremely combat focused and this is mirrored by its base attack bonus (highest). With the use of the arcane strike feat and arcane channeling the duskblade can dish out great amounts of damage, a lot more than the typical psychic warrior ever will. Additionally, it doesn't hurt that the duskblade's casting is intelligence-based either, because this means more skillpoints. But since the skilllist only features the knowledge skills this leads to more combat combat power via knowledge devotion and not to more versatility out of combat.

      The psychic warrior only gets one power per level and really starves for powerpoints, but some of the powers he can get are really unique in the game. And the list of powers he can pick from is far more versatile than the duskblade spell list which has lots of overlappings. Thus, concentrate on using the options exclusively available to you and take advantage of them. You can use your powers to manifest natural weapons to get multiple attacks far earlier than others can, enchant your own weapons to save a lot of gold and invest the saved amount in other equipment. Look for great defenses because this is the area in which you really have a great _power_-advantage. You may not have the best base attack bonus and may not have direct damage powers, but you can alter your attacks in such a way that this is compensated: Power claws/weapon is an unbelievable power, for instance. You get to ignore damage reduction which can make a difference of 10 points of damage per hit or more. And again, this saves you money.
    • Vs. the Hexblade
      Spoiler
      Show
      The hexblade is another gish base class and fills a role similar to the psychic warrior. Everything that can be said about the comparison between the duskblade and the psychic warrior fits for this class, too; in some points even more so. The only big difference lies in its defensive capabilities and debuffing. A hexblade's dark companion acf and the curse ability are really strong in debuffing enemies. The psychic warrior unfortunately is not. His best powers are no debuffs and the ones who are, all allow saving throws which will have a low DC, since his wisdom score won't be that high and first and foremost because he is behind in psionic power level. Defensively a hexblade gets its charisma to saves against spells and has the powerful mettle ability (evasion for fortitude and will saves).

      As a psychic warrior, don't bother with debuffing your enemies, rather spend your actions on buffing up and hitting things, which most of the time also has some battlefield control effects, as well. You don't have mettle and don't get your wisdom to saves, but you have strong powers for these situations. Defensive precognition is a phenomenal level 1 power which will save your butt (and probably the ones of your buddies as well) more than once. Again, don't try to optimize to the point where you can even use a suboptimal tactic meaningfully, but to the point where your strengths make you outstanding. DnD is all about teamplay and this favors specialists.
    • Vs. the Tome of Battle Classes
      Spoiler
      Show
      Every melee character has to put up with the comparison to the three martial classes. Crusader, swordsage and warblade have the unique advantage of never running out of maneuvers. In contrast, running out of power points happens rather easily to a psychic warrior. But (save for some exceptions like the shadow jaunt line) martial maneuvers do not have any out of combat use, long lasting buffs or utility character. Use powers which provide long lasting buffs and can be manifested as swift actions, or combine them with linked power or schism. Just don't try to be as die hard as the crusader or as hard hitting as the warblade or as skillful as the swordsage. Try to utilize your powers in the best way possible and try to accomplish unique feats.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-08-04 at 04:51 AM.

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    IV. Abilities
    (The Required Basic Qualities for Psychological Warfare)


    The Joker: The greatest master in the Art to ever walk the realms of imagination.

    "I've chosen you for this mission, Magnumopus, because you have all the necessary qualities for participating in psychological warfare..."
    -- Convolvulus, Mentor of the young Magnumopus


    Strength -- Most builds need this. It's your main source for attack bonus and damage. Typically, your highest priority.
    Dexterity -- If you rely on the expansion power, you can live with a 10 in dexterity since you get a -2 dex-penalty for every size increase anyway. If you rely on two-weapon fighting or combat reflexes, you need it, however. But be aware that this really doesn't mesh well with expansion, one of the best powers in the game.
    Constitution -- Every character needs this and melees need it even more. You already have a rather small hit die for a combat class, therefore put at least a 12 in there, better aim for 14 or higher. And don't forget: It pushes your fortitude save, too.
    Intelligence -- Unless you really need the skillpoints, you can leave intelligence at a score of 10. Remember that combat expertise and its follow-ups (improved trip) demand a score of 13 here, however.
    Wisdom -- You need at least a score of 11 to manifest powers at all and a score of 16 to manifest your highest level powers. It gives you more power points, too -- something psychic warriors are starving for. And don't neglect your will save. Put at least a 12 in there.
    Charisma -- You don't even have a single class skill keyed off charisma. Dump this.

    => STR>WIS>=CON>DEX=INT>CHA

    Elite Array: 15 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 13 WIS, 8 CHA
    28-Point-Buy: 16 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 14 WIS, 8 CHA
    32-Point-Buy: 16 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

    This is for the standard melee route. Dexterity based characters suffer more mad. Generally you would interchange strength and dexterity, but remember that your strength score is needed for damage. If you are ranged, you either rely on dexterity or wisdom (zen archery) for hitting. This distribution does not include any prerequisites from feats, such as combat expertise or combat reflexes.

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    V. Races
    (The Naturally Gifted in the Art of Psychological Warfare)


    The half-giant lady posing here, is not only bad-ass on a figurative level...

    When it comes to races, it's similar to all other aspects of the process of building a DnD character: Coolness trumps it all. All the while you should keep a few clues in mind, when you make your choice.

    • Ability Score Adjustments: Try to avoid races with a penalty to constitution or wisdom, but look for boosts in these two and your main combat ability (strength or dexterity).

    • Level Adjustment and Racial Hit Dice: If you can buy your level adjustment off, nothing stops you from using a race with a level adjustment (just don't get higher than +2), if you can't the race must compare to a whole level of manifesting and more. Racial hit dice are generally horrible (unless they are dragon or outsider HD) and should be avoided like the plague.

    • Powerpoints: Races with bonus powerpoints help a lot in the early levels. Otherwise look for a decent wisdom score.


    Psionic
    Spoiler
    Show
    DromitesSRD -- They suck as a psychic warrior race.
    DuergarSRD -- A powerful race for psychic warriors. They get immunities, 3 bonus power points and 2 very useful 1/d spell-like abilities. If you cannot buy off the level adjustment, it's still good.
    ElansSRD -- Maybe the best race in sheer terms of power. Repletion is like an additional power (sustenance) and resilience SU comes in handy. The 2 bonus powerpoints and the fact that they are immortal don't hurt either. What makes them perfect is the resistance SU, which is an unmatched power/spell, and that they are aberrations and may take the rapidstrike and improved rapidstrike feats. There are two racial feats to improve the resilience and resistance SUs.
    GithyankiEPH -- The hit on the wisdom score and their +2 level adjustment, make these fellas a no-go.
    GithzeraiEPH -- They have good racial abilities and a bonus to wisdom and dexterity. The +2 level adjustment hurts though, so try to buy it off. Otherwise this race is not worth it.
    Half-GiantsSRD -- Powerful build, 2 bonus powerpoints, favored class psychic warrior and great ability score adjustments make this a great race for most psychic warriors. The level adjustment of +1 hurts, so make sure you can buy it off using the rules presented in Unearthed Arcana. If you can't, it's still a viable option.
    KalashtarsECS -- One additional powerpoint per character level (better than a +2 in wis in this respect) makes this race a very good choice for a psychic warrior. Their once per day mindlink ability is the icing on the cake. If you like this ability, you can take a feat to improve the manifester level and get 3 uses per day. Additionally, as a kalashtar you qualify for quori shards, which lets you implant an ectoplasmic fist shard for an effective size increase of one category when determining unarmed strike damage, or power link shards which can be used to overchannel powers.
    MaenadsSRD -- Not the worst choice since they provide 2 bonus powerpoints. But the outburst ability and energy ray are forgettable. Humans are better: Simply take psionic talent (and this would be a bad choice in most cases).
    SynadsCP -- Wow! You get 3 bonus powerpoints, darkvision, a +2 bonus on will saves, a once per day +2 bonus on several rolls and finally a once per day schism-like ability (you can actually use it while affected by schism). There is a feat which lets you use this ability twice per day. They are of the aberration type and not humanoids, which makes them immune to some spells and effects. This also qualifies them for the rapidstrike and improved rapidstrike feats. A true powerhouse.
    Thri-KreenEPH -- Two racial hit dice and a level adjustment of +2 make this race unplayable: Useful for theoretical optimization only.
    XephsSRD -- Serviceable race if you want to focus on dexterity, this is not recommended however. But they do get darkvision.

    Core
    Spoiler
    Show
    Dwarves -- The bonus to constitution and darkvision make this race a good choice for a lot of classes. The psychic warrior makes no exception.
    Elves -- As in most cases, they also suck for psychic warriors.
    Half-Elves -- Worst race ever.
    Half-Orcs -- Darkvision and +2 strength make this race viable; -2 intelligence hurts, though.
    Halflings -- Only for dexterity-based builds and it's even suboptimal for those, because of the negative strength adjustment. The faerûnian strongheart subrace is recommended.
    Gnomes -- As with halflings, only take this for dexterity-based or ranged builds. Whisper gnomes from races of stone are recommended.
    Humans -- This is a good race for any build.
    Kobolds -- They are small and they get a penalty to constitution (with the help of the variant races from unearthed arcana or the SRD you can offset the penalty). But if you are allowed to take the dragonwrought feat (see chapter VIII), a whole new world opens up. Your type becomes dragon and you can select feats which are normally reserved for dragons and other powerful races (rapidstrike and improved rapidstrike, see chapter VIII. Feats). In this case, this race turns to blue.

    Other
    Spoiler
    Show
    ChangelingsECS -- They provide an easy way to qualify for the warshaper prestige class. That's about it.
    GoliathRoS -- Similar to half-giants, since they get powerful build, too. But they don't get any bonus power points. The +4 strength ability adjustment is great.
    Half-OgreRoD -- Take this for the ultimate grappler. You are large, you get +6 to strength and +2 to constitution, darkvision and the giant type for a +2 level adjustment.
    IllumiansRoD -- With the right choices you can have a +2 manifester level ("krau") and key your bonus powerpoints off strength ("Aeshkrau"), if your DM agrees that this falls under the transparency rules. If not, ignore them. Otherwise this race rocks.
    MongrefolkRoD -- The +4 to constitution is very nice, indeed.
    ShifterECS -- Okay ability adjustments and the nifty shifting racial feature make this race useful. Recommended for dexterity-based builds only.
    WarforgedECS -- The +2 con is always good and they qualify for the battlefist attached component, which is great for tashalatora characters. What makes them really problematic in the early levels though, is their penalty to wisdom and that they only get half healing. Since you are a construct though, if you get a psicrystal and expanded knowledge (psionic repair damage), you can heal yourself and your crystal with one manifestation of psionic reapair damage via share power.

    Templates
    Spoiler
    Show
    Draconic CreatureRoD -- Darkvision and boni to constitution and strength are very nice. You get a level adjustment, though.
    Dragonborn of BahamutRoD -- If you like the flavor, go for it. Only use it for strength-based builds of course.
    Primordial GiantSoX -- Unebelievably great for half-giant psions/wilders, but for half-giant psywars... not so good. All in all you have -2 STR/DEX, +4 INT/CHA and an at will SLA (invisibility, invisibility purge or levitate). Penalties to your combat stats, boosts to an absolutely useless stat and a stat which really does not that much for you, and a SLA which is nice but nothing to kill for.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-12-01 at 04:20 AM.

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    VI. Alternate Class Features
    (Improving Your Chances of Succeding in the Art)


    This cat is the Pai Mei of Psychological Warfare.

    The fact that the psychic warrior has no real class features, obviously leaves this die hard fella unimpressed. In case you wonder why: the mantled warrior and soulbound weapon substitution levels are so special, they actually give you class features.

    Mantled Warrioronline -- Great ACF! Typically you'd choose the freedom mantle for 10 feet movement speed and access to dimension hop and psionic fly, but the time and natural world mantles are very good as well, you'll probably feel dirty abusing their powers (anticipatory strike, metamorphosis) though. The magic mantle, by the way, says "In addition, you always treat magic and psionics as identical", which at least RAW means that you can qualify for prestige classes like arcane archer, which require the ability to cast spells of a certain level. You might also argue that a prestige class' increase in caster level should now also work for your manifester level, which makes eldritch knight a viable prestige class option.
    Skilled City Dwelleronline -- Lets you change ride for tumble. For the great majority of builds, this is a no-brainer.
    Soulbound Weapononline -- Solid ACF which potentially saves you a lot of gold. The ability to enchant your weapon on the fly can be extremely helpful because it means that you'll always have the right tool, or in this case weapon, for the job at hand. The only cost involved is that you have to select the call weaponry power and gain weapon focus as your second level bonus feat and cannot choose it freely. As written, you cannot take this _and_ the mantled warrior ACF, but a reasonable DM should allow you to change the substitution to the first level or some similar work-around.


    A Class Feature Disguised as a Feat: The Psicrystal

    The psicrystal is not something reserved only for psions, every psionic class can get the psicrystal affinity feat. It is very similar to a familiar which basically was changed to a feat with the release of the complete arcane splatbook. I have listed it under alternate class features, because it scales with your level and really looks more like a class feature than a traditional feat. (To see why it's double-colored read the entry about feats.)

    • Psicrystal Creation and Destruction
      Spoiler
      Show
      Unfortunately, the rules about psicrystals are very incomplete and sloppily written. It is a construct but has no material costs which is weird in the first place. The benefit of the psicrystal affinity feat says that you can gain a psicrystal (the entry above is flufftext), but neither the rules under psion nor in its monster-entry say how this procedes. If you simply assume that it's created as soon as you take the feat, as the feat's flufftext indicates, there is still one issue left: The rules say nowhere what happens when your psicrystal is destroyed.

      New 3.5 Psionics FAQ Excerpt:
      Q: What happens when my psicrystal dies?
      A: The official response from Customer Service is "You can get another one." That is all that is written on the subject, as it wasn't addressed in Complete Psionics. Come up with a suitable houserule -- personally, I've tried a few different ones, but from now on will be using the simplest, inspired by the Tome of Magic: It reforms on its own after 24 hours. I must stress, though, this is a house rule -- no official method of getting a psicrystal back exists (though it's clear you do get another one), and no penalty exists when it dies (beyond not having your crystal around).


      I personally dislike both of these rulings. A psicrystal is a construct and not living matter after all (otherwise it would be a living construct). As such it shouldn't be able to spawn out of nowhere and/or reform itself, it actually needs to be constructed, which requires raw materials. My advice: Treat it like a familiar. The raw material for a psicrystal costs 100 gp, it takes 24 hours to craft one, and since the rules specifically state that a psicrystal is "an extension of its creator’s personality, [which is why] a character’s psicrystal is in some ways a part of him", the XP-penalty makes a lot of sense (a lot more than with the familiar).

    • Psicrystal BAB
      Spoiler
      Show
      Since there is no special entry about a psicrystal's base attack bonus, it's safe to assume that it depends on it's construct hit dice, which means it has a medium BAB.

      New 3.5 Psionics FAQ Excerpt:
      Q: What is a psicrystal's base attack bonus?
      A: As a direct result of the way the rules work, it'll be 3/4 the psicrystal's hit dice -- in other words, the base attack bonus of a cleric/rogue/psychic warrior of a level equal to the sum of your psionic class levels.
      (Note that if the psicrystal did not gain hit dice, no rules exist for the replacement of base attack bonus (familiars have such rules), and thus a psicrystal would be permanantly stuck with a +0 base attack bonus.)

    • Psicrystal Feats
      Spoiler
      Show
      A psicrystal gets construct hit dice, thus it actually gets feats! But your DM may have a say in this and if they don't get any feats, they become orange.

      New 3.5 Psionics FAQ Excerpt:
      Q: What's this I hear about psicrystals gaining feats? Familiars dont'!
      A: A psicrystal isn't a familiar, though. A familiar says that it is treated as if it were a creature of its master's HD for effects relating to HD, such as Sleep. A psicrystal's HD entry is "as master" -- meaning it actually gains HD. Every intelligent creature that gains hit dice gains feats. Conclusion: Psicrystals gain feats.
      Note that a psicrystal doesn't gain hit points from these construct hit dice (its hit point entry is "half master's"), and its saving throws are unaffected (saving throw text "as master"), and that it does not gain skill points from them either (skill entry rules give it at least 4 ranks in certain skills, and otherwise identical skills to it's master's)... but in other regards, it gains Construct hit dice.

      I should stress the point that this follows from game design principles. No WotC source has yet printed the statistics block for an advanced character's psicrystal, and it isn't explicitly called out in the rules that they do (it's clear implicitly).


    You may have noticed that I have rated this as blue and orange, that's because there are typically two ways of using this feat: As part of the share pain+vigor-combo or without this combo.

    • Used as Part of the Combo: The combo builds upon the use of vigor via a psycrystal's share powers ability and the share pain power (from expanded knowledge which means that you will get it at level 7 at the earliest) which you manifest on your psicrystal. You take only half damage (your psicrystal takes the other) and this half is absorbed by your temporary hit points. As you can see, the benefit of vigor is effectively doubled. Share pain costs 3 powerpoints and vigor costs at least 1 powerpoint, and you need to remanifest vigor every time your temporary hit points are threatened to run out, because your psicrystal cannot be healed, only repaired (and the chances are very high that no one in your party can). Thus, you can only rely on this combo and still use other powers with a certain amount of powerpoints which you will reach with about level 10.

    • Used without the Combo: You can, of course, use a psicrystal without this combo and just see it as a neat gimmick. You get alertness and a benefit derived from the psicrystal's personality (nimble, observant and resolved are very good), after all. And to a certain extent, as soon as it has the ability to fly, you can use it as a scout (with all its construct immunities and flight it is protected from traps well enough). Another handy approach is to use it as a mindlink if your party has to split up. You can give the crystal to the party-scout and share the information instantly. If you also take the psicrystal containment feat, you can use two feats or powers which expend your focus in one round, deep impact and greater psionic weapon for instance.
      Remember that your psicrystal gains feats from its hit dice (look above). If your DM disagrees with this the psicrystal becomes much less useful. That's why it's colored blue _and_ orange.


    For more information about psicrystals (which feats to select for your psicrystal, for example) check out the Mount Handbook by Prime32.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-11-15 at 12:30 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    VII. Skills
    (Mastery in the Art of Psychological Warfare requires a lot of Skill, but Not Necessarily a lot of Skills)


    True, this crazy look intimidates nobody, but when you've seen what he did to the fat guy you sure as hell are intimidated!

    "Sure I jack a few fools, I bring 'em the pain, but sometimes it's about intimidation, you know. It's mind games."
    -- Terry Tate, Office Linebacker and Disciple of the Art of Psychological Warfare


    Strangely enough, you don't have intimidate as a class skill, but the art of psychological warfare is not about appearance, it's about the evidence of your actions. You are not meant to be a skillmonkey, rather the opposite. And while it makes sense to get at least 3 skillpoints per level for your best skills, don't make your life harder, by making sacrifices in other areas, and try to forcefully change that.

    To continue with the example, in effect, don't try to intimidate someone with verbal threats, you are much smarter than that: Use your mindpowers for a bigger stick!

    Autohypnosis -- Great skill with many uses.
    Climb -- You've got teleport powers and so on, don't waste points here.
    Concentration -- Put at least 5 ranks in there for autohypnosis synergy, better put as many in there as you need to beat a DC 20 concentration check regularly for regaining your psionic focus. And don't forget that you need this to manifest your powers defensively. Maybe it's best to try to max it.
    Craft -- Maybe a few ranks in poisonmaking (or basket weaving). But this skill is keyed off intelligence, so might be better off with profession.
    Jump -- Only for charging builds, all others should skip this.
    Knowledge (psionics) -- Put one rank in there in order to make trained checks.
    Profession -- Since it's keyed off wisdom, it makes a lot more sense than craft; just use professions like poisoner.
    Ride -- Swap this for tumble, unless you really want to play a mounted warrior.
    Search -- If you plan on taking levels in the slayer prestige class and make use of the track feat, you can put 5 ranks in there for a synergy bonus on survival checks, otherwise ignore it.
    Swim -- Too situational for most campaigns, skip this too. If you need it, there are powers and spells which help you out.
    Tumble -- Get this by swapping out ride via skilled city dweller. Great skill. Combine this with hustle for great effect, as you can change your position without provoking attacks of opportunity and still full attack afterwards.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-12-03 at 07:49 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    VIII. Feats
    (Or the Old School Martial Arts)


    Sometimes you just have to return to old school martial arts.

    "Idiot! Owing to the failure of the back, to back us up, the order of march has been turned back to front! Now get back to the front!!"
    -- Platypus, a traditionally minded Warlord


    Psychological warfare is pointless without the necessary training in traditional combat. Feats will define your combat style. As mentioned in chapter III under combat roles, you must make the choice on which style you want to focus. To make it easier to distinguish which style demands which ability scores and feats, I have categorized them. Before I go into detail, there are some aspects to watch out for:

    • Don't get MAD: Yes, you can (nearly) end up like a paladin if you don't plan your feat-selection. Combat expertise needs 13 intelligence, combat reflexes and two-weapon fighting demand a high dexterity score, and without a clever solution you will always need strength for damage (and for some feats, of course).

    • Make Clever Use of Prerequisites: Some feats, as well as some prestige classes, demand the selection of rather sub-par feats as prerequisites. If somehow possible, try to build upon that and select feats with the same lame prerequisites, this will lower the overall price. Feats that fit this description are dodge, iron will and weapon focus.

    • Remember Your Powers: With all the feat-trees and combat options, you can very easily end up with no feat slots open to enhance your manifesting ability. You should really think twice about, if that's worth it for you.


    Dexterity-Based Route
    Spoiler
    Show
    Combat ReflexesSRD -- Needed for karmic strike and robilar's gambit. Great effect, but without these two feats too situational in my book and it meshes very badly with expansion because of the dexterity penalty.
    • Deft OpportunistCA -- This is the only feat in the game, that i know of, which gives an attack-form a permanent +4 bonus on attack rolls. This makes a spiked chain combined with weapon finesse and power attack a very appealing choice for the masochist.
    • Double HitMH -- Allows you to make off-hand attacks on attacks of opportunity. Has improved two-weapon fighting as a prerequisite.
    • Karmic StrikeCW -- Has dodge (urks) and combat expertise (13 intelligence) as a prerequisite. Take a -4 penalty to AC and get an attack of opportunity for every hit you take. A lot of people rave about this in combination with robilar's gambit, but prepare to die because of it. The vampiric claw power helps a lot in this respect.
    • Robilar's GambitPH2 -- See karmic strike. The problem with this feat is that you might as well be dead before your opponent.

    DodgeSRD -- Maybe the worst feat in the game. Unless you need it as a prerequisite, never ever take this feat.
    • MobilitySRD -- It's a lot better than dodge, but that's not saying anything.
      • Spring AttackSRD -- This is a nice feat, but the prerequisites are just too horrible.
        • Whirlwind AttackSRD -- This feat has so many feats as a prerequisite, it must be awesome, right? Far from it. 13 intelligence and dexterity and 4 feats as prerequisites simply kill this feat. It's kind of nice against hordes of critters and mirror images, though. Nevertheless, the only really good way to use this feat is with the psychic weapon master's 9th level ability, which lets you make it as a standard action. By then you will have already forsaken the chance to get 6th level powers. Why this is a 9th level class feature of a weak class, rather than the standard, is beyond me.

    Shadow BladeToB -- Without a dip in swordsage this is very feat intensive, but very good for reducing mad.
    Stand StillSRD -- Now this helps you to overcome the lack of battlefield control this fighting style has compared to tripping. By all means, if you've already picked up combat reflexes, get this feat too, it's just great. Why this feat is no fighter bonus feat and has 13 strength as a requirement instead of combat reflexes, is beyond me, btw.
    Two-Weapon FightingSRD -- There are some builds that use this fighting style, but remember that two-weapon fighting without bonus damage is suboptimal and expansion becomes problematic to use since you get a dexterity penalty.
    • Lightning Mace -- You gain an additional attack on every threat, which is great. Needs weapon focus and combat reflexes however.

    Weapon FinesseSRD -- For combat reflexes and two-weapon fighting builds.

    Strength-Based Route
    Spoiler
    Show
    Combat ExpertiseSRD -- Take this if you want to go the improved trip route. But beware, it will make you more mad, since you won't get by with an intelligence score of just 10 anymore.
    • Improved TripSRD -- Great feat. Combine this with expansion and a reach weapon for great battlefield control.
    • Knock-DownSRD -- If you've already taken improved trip, you should take this as well. If you deal 10 or more points of damage with an attack, you can make a free trip attempt and immediately get another attack if you were successful.

    Reckless ChargeMH -- Gives you a +4 instead of a +2 bonus on a charge. Rivals weapon focus, I'd skip this.
    Leap of the HeavensPH2 -- Only use this after you've taken leap attack. In this case however, the feat becomes strong, since you won't have to double your jump DC when you only charge for 10 feet.
    Power AttackSRD -- Every melee character with a two-handed weapon takes this. Period.
    • Brutal StrikePH2 -- Make your enemy sickened via power attack damage. -2 to all saves will make your caster buddies love you.
    • Cleave -- With expansion and a reach weapon, this feat can actually see some use.
      • Great Cleave -- Now how are the odds that you kill an opponent with a single attack? And if you do, you probably won't need this feat to win, anyway.
    • Improved BullrushSRD -- Needed for shock trooper. But useful in its own right.
      • Shock TrooperCW -- Great for charging builds. Use this in conjunction with psionic lion's charge and combat brute for devastating results.
    • Improved OverrunSRD -- This can be fun with the use of expansion, whirlwind attack or mithral tornado (lvl4 iron heart maneuver) and vampiric blade/claws. Move into a pack of opponents and thrash away. If you use metamorphosis, for example, use a form with trample and squish the **** out of the creeps.
    • Improved SunderSRD -- If you want to destroy your loot, go for it. It's really here because it's the prerequisite of...
      • Combat BruteCW -- This feat makes chargers useful after charging. If you took shock trooper, I'd say this feat is obligatory.
    • Leap AttackCAdv -- See shock trooper.

    Ranged Route
    Spoiler
    Show
    Brutal ThrowCAdv -- Reduces MAD and is thus a very good feat for throwers.
    • Power ThrowCAdv -- Very nice feat, but this makes the throwing style even more feat-starved.

    Point Blank ShotSRD -- A prerequisite for most other ranged feats.
    • Precise ShotSRD -- Very good feat because you will eventually have to shoot into melee.
      • Improved Precise ShotSRD -- Very strong feat since ignoring anything less than total cover and total concealment can lead to a massive boost in damage output. The perequisite in dexterity can be problematic, though (mad).
    • Rapid ShotSRD -- This is _the_ feat for archers. Take it, or go melee.
      • Improved Rapid ShotCW -- Good to keep your attack bonus high, but definitely no must-have.
      • ManyshotSRD -- Manyshot is a rather bad trade-off, especially when compared to rapid shot. Only take it if you want to use it in a round in which you regain your psionic focus via psionic meditation and don't want to manifest hustle.
      • Greater ManyshotSRD -- You do not deal precision damage. Skip this.
    • Psionic ShotSRD -- This is only worth it, if you take the greater version, too.
      • Greater Psionic ShotSRD -- The bonus damage is not bad, but you have to expend your psionic focus. Regain it with a move action via psionic meditation and then use manyshot, or simply use hustle.
      • Fell ShotSRD -- Solid feat. Invaluable when you absolutely must hit your target.

    Woodland ArcherRoW -- You probably cannot use the moving sniper option, but the +4 attack bonus after a miss and the power to ignore concealment are still very valuable.
    Zen ArcheryCW -- Use your wisdom modifier for ranged attack rolls. This reduces mad and with a composite bow this means that your ability scores will look roughly the same as those of a melee psychic warrior.

    Shields
    Spoiler
    Show

    Improved Buckler DefenseSRD -- Nice to improve your AC and a thousand times better than two-weapon defense.
    Improved Shield BashSRD -- It's the core feat for every sword&board fighter.
    • Shield ChargeCW -- Nice for the free trip attempt, but generally it's used to get...
      • Shield SlamCW -- Great effect and the save scales with your character level. It's a full-round action and a lot of creature types are immune to this daze effect, however.

    Inlindl SchoolDotU -- Lets you forsake your shield AC bonus for a bonus to attack with finesseable weapons. Good feat.
    Parrying ShieldLoM -- Your shield bonus to touch AC? A must-have for shield users (unless you take shield specialization)!
    Shield SpecializationPH2 -- Basically a horrible feat, but still better than dodge. It's needed as a prerequisite, however.
    • Active Shield DefensePH2 -- Effective way to compensate the drawbacks of the karmic strike/robilar's gambit route.
    • Agile Shield FighterPH2 -- It's like two-weapon fighting for shields without a dexterity requirement.
    • Shield WardPH2 -- Better than parrying shield.
    • Shield SlingPH2 -- This can be lots of fun with the telekinetic boomerang power.

    Natural and Unarmed Attacks
    Spoiler
    Show

    Improved Natural AttackSRD -- Every monk build relying on unarmed strikes takes this, and since you have powers to get natural attacks it might be even useful for non-tashalatora builds.
    Improved Unarmed StrikeSRD -- This gives smackers another attack to their repertoire. Tashalatora builds get this for free, of course.
    • Improved GrappleSRD -- It is a nice option for psychic warriors, since they have several powers which complement this style very well. But I would go this route only with a tashalatora build, because it has 13 dexterity as a prerequisite. Since monks ignore the prerequisites of their bonus feats, they don't run the risk to lose the benefits of this feat when using the expansion power.

    MultiattackSRD -- You have several powers which give you natural attacks. If you use these as secondary attacks, multiattack is worth a +3 bonus on your attack rolls.
    • Improved MultiattackDrac -- Multiple attacks lead to a bad AB and every feat, offsetting this, helps.

    RapidstrikeDrac -- Only open for aberrations, dragons, elementals, magical beasts and plants, but fortunately elans and synads actually are of the aberration type. Take this for your claws to get another attack.
    • Improved RapidstrikeDrac -- You get to make another two or more additional attacks with your chosen pair of natural weapons depending on your BAB. No kidding.

    Snap KickToB -- Additional attacks are always welcome and this one works on attacks of opportunity, which means that it's perfect for masochists. Watch out that you don't ruin your attack bonus, though.
    Superior Unarmed StrikeToB -- If you are a monk and lose more than 5 levels of unarmed damage progression, this feat becomes interesting, because a monk's belt cannot compensate the lost damage anymore. And there are people who hate relying on items. Of course, it helps those who take unarmed strike without levels in the monk class, too.

    Psionic
    Spoiler
    Show

    Azure TalentMoI -- Two levels of incarnate and this feat provide up to 4 additional powerpoints (you can only invest an amount of essentia points equal to your class levels in a soulmeld shaping class). As said, this makes a lot of sense if you use psychic warrior as a dip in order to get more powerpoints.
    Craft Cognizance Crystal -- This may save you a lot of money and, depending on the campaign, may be needed to actually get a cognizance crystal.
    Craft Dorje, Craft Psicrown, Imprint Stone -- Don't take these as a psychic warrior. The main reason why these items are of use to you, is that they can complement your powers known.
    Craft Universal Item -- Use this feat to create your own gloves of the titan grip or psychoactive skin of proteus and the likes. If magic/psionic items are easily available in your campaign, this feat becomes almost obsolete.
    Earth SenseRoS -- Normally I wouldn't consider this feat, but it's the prerequisite for earth power...
    • Earth PowerRoS -- Awesome feat. If you can spare two feat slots you can't go wrong with this. Psychic warriors are starving for powerpoints.

    Elan Repletion, EnhancedCP -- Completely unnecessary. You should have 1 spare powerpoint.
    Elan Resilience, EnhancedCP -- If you don't want to use share pain and vigor this is an inferior but still nice replacement.
    Elan Resistance, EnhancedCP -- A +4 racial bonus on all your saves is already extremely strong, with this feat you should be set for life as regards saving throws.
    Elan Retainment, EnhancedCP -- Once per day and the cost of 3 powerpoints make this feat mediocre (at best) instead of great.
    Expanded KnowledgeSRD -- Use this to pick up powers like share pain, metamorphosis, schism and anticipatory strike. Prepare to feel dirty, though.
    Extend PowerSRD -- Very good feat which can really help with powers which last 10min/lvl.
    Heavy Armor OptimizationRoS -- Forget about this feat (although it's still way better than dodge), it's a prerequisite for...
    • Deflective ArmorRoS -- Lets you add your armor bonus (including the enhancement bonus) to your touch AC as long as you're psionically focused. Great feat.

    Instant ClarityToB -- If you've already taken psychic renewal you probably should select this feat. But also in general, after you've dipped into a martial class, this feat can be very nice if you frequently use a mechanic which demands that you drop your psionic focus.
    Kalashtar Mindlink -- Mindlink is a very useful power, and if you like to use it, then this feat is really good. Only for kalashtars, of course.
    Linked PowerCP -- Great feat for psychic warriors, because buffing takes so much time. Try to take this.
    MetapowerCP -- Use this with a power you're in love with and use frequently. Has the potential to save a lot of powerpoints.
    Midnight AugmentationMoI -- This provides access to augment options beyond your current level.
    Opportunity PowerSRD -- Use this with dissipating/dissolving touch and hostile empathic transfer. Good for masochistic builds (combat reflexes, karmic strike, robilar's gambit), otherwise skip it.
    OverchannelSRD -- Not bad for getting more out of your powers. Only use it with the talented feat.
    • TalentedSRD -- This makes overchannel usable.

    Practiced ManifesterCP -- If you lose manifester levels this becomes a great feat. Tashalatora builds must take this, if you go the slayer or sanctified mind route consider it.
    Psicrystal AffinitySRD -- See chapter VI.
    • Psicrystal ContainmentSRD -- See chapter VI.
    • Psycarnum CrystalMoI -- If you already have a psicrystal and the azure talent and midnight augmentation feats, this feat does make a lot of sense. Also helps the incarnum infusion power.

    Psionic Fist/WeaponSRD -- A prerequisite for greater psionic fist/weapon and deep impact/unavoidable strike respectively.
    • Deep ImpactSRD -- Expend your psionic focus to make an attack as a touch attack. This can be very helpful. Combined with hustle, you can do this over and over again.
    • Greater Psionic Fist/WeaponSRD -- Combine this with hustle.
    • Unavoidable StrikeSRD -- See deep impact.

    Psionic BodySRD -- This feat may help in the early levels, but since you won't pick up 10 psionic feats, improved toughness will be better.
    Psionic MeditationSRD -- Regaining your psionic focus as a move action is great, since you can use hustle to do it as a swift action. Mandatory for some builds and a very solid selection in any case.
    Psionic TalentSRD -- Although this feat becomes better every time you take it, this is not worth it. In a strictly low level campaign it may be.
    Psycarnum InfusionMoI -- Pretty useless if you only take a few levels in a soulmeld class. The possible effect can be quite powerful, though.
    Psychic RenewalToB -- If you've accessed a maneuver via martial study, you can use this feat to recover the maneuver in combat. Even if you do have a recovery mechanic it may come in useful. All in all this sounds very nice, but the cost in powerpoints is probably too much.
    Speed of ThoughtSRD -- Cool feat. I like movement speed. Meshes very well with the hustle power. If you've got an open feat slot, pick this up.
    • Psionic ChargeSRD -- Only for charging builds, but for a charger this can be extremely helpful. But you must expend your psionic focus and have line of sight to your target.

    Synad Multitask, EnhancedCP -- Only for synads, of course, but for them it's nearly compelling.
    Tap MantleCP -- This gives you the option of picking up more mantles after you've taken the mantled warrior ACF. You do not gain the mantle's special ability, but the access to multiple powers not on your list can be very much worth it. As an example, if you have taken the freedom mantle with the ACF, you can get this feat for the time mantle and select anticipatory strike and temporal acceleration as powers known later on. Don't take this feat if you need only one power from the mantle's list and do not care that you get it later, in such a case expanded knowledge is infinitely better, since you automatically add the power to your powers known list.
    • Don MantleCP -- Some of the granted abilities are really, really good and if you've already taken tap mantle this feat can make a lot of sense.

    Up the WallsSRD -- Neat but not worth it. If you like the style and have an open feat slot, you can go for it. The wall walker power is infinitely better though.
    Quicken PowerSRD -- As quicken spell, this feat lets you use a power, with a manifesting time of 1 full-round action or less, as a swift action. Great for psychic warriors since they are extremely "action-starved" due to buffing. The reason why i've colored it in green is its cost: An additional 6 powerpoints really is a lot. If you use it frequently you will burn your powerpoints way too fast. For psychic warriors this feat comes into equation at eleventh level at the earliest, probably later.

    Miscellaneous
    Spoiler
    Show
    Able LearnerRoD -- Not needed save for some obscure builds.
    Blind-FightSRD -- Since you have powers which help you in this respect, steadfast perception for example, this feat becomes pretty worthless once you hit a certain power level. Prerequisite for pierce magical concealment.
    DragonwroughtRotD -- This changes kobolds from a laughable creep to one of the true powerhouses of DnD. Here it's not used with the rite of passage and loredrake for making fun of measly wizards, but to qualify for monstrous and dragon only feats, like rapidstrike and improved rapidstrike.
    Improved InitiativeSRD -- This feat is always an option, for any build.
    Improved ToughnessCW -- Basically this feat gives you a d10 hit die. Not bad, but you have better things to do with your feat slots.
    Iron WillSRD -- Horrible feat, but it's needed for the sanctified mind prestige class. If appropriate, use the otyugh hole from CS to get this.
    Mage SlayerCA -- This is really good for builds with a lot of range. There is an unknown commodity concerning the transparency rule involved with this feat, however. If you take this feat, your caster level takes a hit, but it says nothing about manifesting. Ask your DM how he handles this feat and the transparency rule. If you take the hit in manifester level, don't even think about considering this feat.
    • Pierce Magical ConcealmentCA -- Similar to its prerequisite blind-fight, this feat becomes worthless with the propper use of powers. The benefits are really, really good, though.
    • Pierce Magical ProtectionCA -- It may scare you off, that nowadays most casters are running around equipped with mithral twilight chainshirts and the likes. But it does not only work on mage armor and the likes, it works on _any_ spells granting AC boni: This includes haste, the polymorph line and enlarge person. Good-bye shapechange! Ask your DM if he/she is aware of this.

    Martial StudyToB -- Mostly needed as a prerequisite for a particular stance. A dip in a martial class is better in most cases though.
    • Martial StanceToB -- See above, but stances are a lot better than maneuvers for non-ToB classes, because they are always active.

    Monastic TrainingECS -- Lets you freely multiclass between monk and a chosen class. Needed for the tashalatora feat.
    • TashalatoraSoS -- Lets you stack psychic warrior and monk levels to calculate fast movement, flurry of blows, slow fall, unarmed AC bonus and unarmed strike damage. Combine this with monastic training for the best monk builds out there.

    Pole MasterSoS -- This can be fun for tashalatora builds with the soulbound weapon ACF because you get the weapon focus and proficiencies anyway. Yes, I know that monk's should rather improve their unarmed attacks, but a reach weapon has its uses with expansion, since it doubles reach. And who doesn't want to play a martial arts master with a pole weapon.
    Stormguard WarriorTob -- Similar to shadow blade this is extremely feat intensive without a dip of warblade (otherwise it would be blue). Extremely deadly with robilar's gambit & co and two-weapon fighting.
    TrackSRD -- Normally you wouldn't touch this, but it is an prerequisite for the slayer prestige class.
    Weapon FocusSRD -- This feat is way better than dodge, but still a waste. Only take it, if you need it as a prerequisite.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-12-02 at 05:26 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    IX. Powers
    (Also Known as the Good Stuff)


    Hallucinating and seeing strange creatures is a common side effect of good stuff.

    "Duh! This psychological warfare is good stuff."
    -- Magnumopus


    Let's get to the "good stuff", now: Your mind powers. They are the foundation of psychological warfare and selecting them can be more difficult than selecting feats. But there are a few guidelines which help in this respect:

    • The Coolness: DnD is a game and as such it is supposed to be fun and no competition about the size of special sexual organs. Pick powers which you think make you look cool, let you be and act cool. If you like it hot, nothing stops you from looking hot, and picking up hot powers either.

    • No Overlappings: It's important to _not_ pick powers with overlapping or very similar (but not complementary) effects and powers which scale badly (powers with saving throws, for instance). Since you lack the possibility to replace powers later on, you will otherwise end up with a bunch of idle powers, eventually.
      As an example: If you do not have any charging feats, do not take psionic lion's charge and hustle. Just take hustle.

    • Cover Your Bases: Further, try to cover your bases. Unlike with spellcasters, your bases are not categorized in battlefield control, de-buffing and so on, but in various kinds of buffs. Save for some exceptions (like hostile empathic transfer), you won't use de-buffs or direct attack powers, because your saving throw DC will be low. Your buffs provide the needed effects:
      • Attack Buffs (reach/size, AB,...)
      • Damage Boni (type,...)
      • Defense and Survivability (AC, saves, temporary hit points, healing,...)
      • Movement (speed, flying, teleport,...)
      • Utility Buffs (resistances, perception,...)


    • On getting Powers from other Lists: There are four ways to get powers which do not appear on the psychic warrior list:
      • Expanded Knowledge: you can either take this feat and select any power one level below your highest capability or use
      • Independent Research: There is a paragraph dedicated to this in the SRD.
      • Mantled Warrior: Finally, this ACF lets you select the powers associated to your chosen mantle. See Chapter VI. Alternate Class Features for further information.
      • Psychic Chirurgery: If you find a high-level telepath willing to do this, it is a very nice option to expand your powers known list beyond its normal limit. It costs XP and/or gold, but some powers are definitely worth it. By the way, if the telepath has the feat Supernatural Transformation from Savage Species linked to this power, there are no costs involved.


    • The Trap: There is a trap involved with buffing, which you should be aware of. Combat in DnD tends to be quite short and you won't have the time to buff up for several rounds. Use feats (linked power) and powers manifested as swift or immediate actions, or powers which give you more actions (schism, temporal acceleration) or let you act earlier (anticipatory strike), to do it faster and try to engage as early as possible. Moreover, that is why a power's duration really matters... a lot.


    That said, pick powers which you like and fit your style, and perhaps most importantly:
    Don't forget to pick powers which you will actually need and use.


    1st Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Adrenalin Boost -- Horrible duration, but augmentable and manifested as a swift action. There are definitely worse powers, but level 1 is crowded.
    Biofeedback -- Damage reduction 2/-- for one powerpoint. Very nice at the early stage of your career, but since augmenting the power costs 3 powerpoints for every additional point and only lasts for 1 minute per level, the power becomes negligible in mid to high levels. Compared to inertial barrier, which is a level 4 power and provides damage reduction 5/--, lasts 10 minutes per level and absorbs 50% of falling damage, biofeedback turns out to be simply inferior. At level ten inertial barrier provides the same damage reduction for the same cost but lasts ten times longer. If you want more survivability in the early levels just take vigor.
    Bite of the Wolf -- Solid power which lets you make multiple attacks from your first level on. Scales nicely as well. Only downside is its duration.
    Call ArmorCP -- Useful in some situations. Nor more, no less.
    Call Itemonline -- The sky's the limit! The ultimate utility power. You cannot call material components for your caster buddy, but you can call a focus. Really, your imagination determines this power's worth.
    Call Weaponry -- Mandatory for the soulbound weapon acf, useful even without. This can replace metaphysical weapon with the augment-option, but you should keep the duration in mind.
    Chameleon -- Nice power for stealth builds. In most cases you won't be stealthy however.
    Channel the Psychic DragonDM -- It scales, it's versatile, but it's also totally trumped by energy adaptation. If it fits your character concept, take it, but do not expect too much from this power. You should at least find some use for the competence boni to your skills.
    Claws of the Beast -- Its duration makes this power great. As bite of the wolf, this power lets you make multiple attacks from early on. Augment it and use claws of the vampire to wreak havoc.
    Catfall -- Not worth it, especially not for a psychic warrior. Get a ring of featherfall or a war wizard's cloak.
    Dissipating Touch -- Power resistance and no weapon damage make this power only usable for masochists in conjunction with opportunity power. The deep crystal material makes this power obsolete. It could be nice for your psicrystal.
    Extend RangeCP -- Cool for ranged builds but remember that sniping is not a good group-tactic.
    Expansion -- This is probably your most important power. Greater size gives you reach and more strength. Note however, that this power interferes with most dexterity-based builds, because you get a cumulative -2 size penalty for every size category larger than medium.
    Force Screen -- Useful for buffing up before combat and augmentable, but the duration lets me skip on this. Get an animated shield instead.
    Grip of Iron -- A must-have for every grapple build. Others will find better powers to pick.
    Inertial Armor -- A must-have for tashalatora builds and psychic warriors who don't like armor, as well. The duration and augmenting are the key to greatness here.
    Metaphysical Claw/Weapon -- Awesome power. Don't forget that a tashalatora monk can use it to enhance her unarmed strikes and a smacker can enhance his claws. Enhancing your weapons in this way, can save you a lot of money. But if you use multiple attack forms or the soulbound weapon ACF this power becomes not worth it or even obsolete.
    Precognition, Defensive -- Insight boni to AC and saves? Get this!
    Precognition, Offensive -- My take on this: Too short duration to manifest out of and too expensive to manifest during combat. But it makes a lot more sense if you use the soulbound weapon ACF, because your weapon is already enhanced, which takes metaphysical weapon out of the picture. The most important point is that it is truly great if you have a lot of different attack forms (e.g. a bite, a tail and claws), because the insight bonus counts on all your attacks.
    Prescience, Offensive -- This is not worth it. Same problems as with offensive precognition and you actually can use power attack with the latter for a better result.
    Psychic WhipSoS -- Some people love this power.... I don't get it. You are not proficient with it, which makes it unuseable for tripping in the early levels when a -4 penalty is harsh even on a touch attack, and it lasts only for round/level and neither damage nor save DC are augmentable which makes it useless in mid to high levels. If you like the style then go for it, but do not expect a powerhouse. In the hands of a DM it can be a very cool and nasty power, however.
    Skate -- Useful power, but you probably have better things to do with your precious powers known.
    Thicken Skin -- If you rely on inertial armor or bracers of armor this is the way to get an additional enhancement bonus to AC. Otherwise it's definitely more effective to spend the money on your armor. The +1 buff is cool, since this costs only 1 powerpoint, but if you want to augment it to +3 and use inertial armor, it's cheaper to just augment inertial armor. Of course the cap is a factor here. If you are of high enough level to manifest it as a swift action, this becomes very nice against hard hitting enemies.
    Vigor -- This power's power really depends on a combo with a psicrystal and shared pain. With this combo the power is extremely strong, otherwise it's just good. This power's downside: It has a short duration and the combo requires at least level 7 because of expanded knowledge (share pain). At this level the combo will drain a great amount of your powerpoints though, so it's problematic to use and it really starts to kick in from about level 10. At higher levels, when you can augment it to about 20 hitpoints and have a solid duration the power itself becomes good. But you cannot swap powers which means you will run around with a seldom used power for several levels or have to take it instead of a higher level power or have to spend a feat on it.

    2nd Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Animal Affinity -- Enhancement boni will be overridden by items. That said, it is very nice in the early levels or low magic campaigns when you are no christmas tree.
    Body Adjustment -- It is solid healing for the cost, but you simply have better things to do.
    Body Purification -- Very solid power. If ability damage is frequent in your campaign this becomes great.
    Damp PowerCP -- Another reason why the psychic warrior is such a defensive powerhouse. You can even protect your whole party later on. This power is just plain good. If you don't get it, you will eventually regret it.
    Darkvision, Psionic -- Not that it's bad, but it becomes pointless when you get goggles of night.
    Detect Hostile Intent -- Potentially game-breaking power. Combine this with anticipatory strike from the time mantle for serious cheese (you can almost always go first). Don't say I haven't warned you.
    Dimension Swap -- Useable for tanking and has utility uses out of combat as well.
    Dissolving Touch/WeaponSRD -- If you have no psicrystal who shall deliver touch powers for you, this is just plain better than dissipating touch in my book, because it ignores power resistance and includes weapon damage, and is again good in conjunction with opportunity power. But the really nice part of this is its duration, which is instant. You can manifest this ahead of time, because it will last until the next attack made with the weapon. You can manifest it on ammunition. Buff all of your party's weapons, then go to bed.
    Empathic TransferSRD -- The basic idea of this power is nice for tanking, but range touch makes it worthless.
    Energy Adaptation, SpecifiedSRD -- Either get this or its big brother energy adaptation. Automatic scaling and the augment-option of manifesting it as an immediate action make this an excellent power which will serve you well for all levels.
    Energy EmanationCP -- Nice for grappling builds, but pretty useless for all others.
    Ethereal VolleyCP -- Very good when needed, but most enemies are not incorporeal. Get a lesser truedeath crystal instead.
    Extend ReachCP -- Nice effect, but the duration is a joke.
    Hustle -- Arguably the best level 2 power. Use it to full-attack every round, regain your psionic focus with psionic meditation, or manifest psionic dimension door as a move swift action.
    Levitate, Psionic -- If you take the freedom mantle via the mantled warrior acf, always skip this since you will pick up fly later on. Otherwise it has its uses.
    Moment of InsightCP -- If your DM really loves the use of fogs and the likes, this power is great, otherwise it's too situational.
    Perfect Archery -- Makes the order of the bow initiate pointless. A must-have for archer builds.
    Power Claws/WeaponCP -- This is a must-have in my book. Unless you play an archer, take this. It is an expensive power, but the effect is really worth it.
    Prowess -- Nice power for an extra attack. Really good for masochists.
    Psionic Lion's Charge -- The key power for charging builds, otherwise use hustle instead.
    Psionic Scent -- If you're aiming for the slayer prestige class, you have to take track. With scent this actually becomes a useful feat.
    [b]Strength of my Enemy -- You leech your opponent's strength. This allows you to get an epic enhancement bonus on strength, as soon as level 4. Also, there is no save against the debuff your foe has to take. Archers can use strength adjusting bows to make sure they always make use of their current strength. Great power.
    Stygian ErasurCP -- See body purification.
    Sustenance -- Useful but the ring of sustenance is cheap enough to keep for emergency situations.
    Tail of the DragonSoS -- If you use claws of the beast, you might as well use this. Great duration and augmentable. Nice power.
    Wall Walker -- Cool power but you probably do not have a place for it.

    3rd Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Claws of the Vampire/Vampiric Blade -- Only take this if your base damage is very high, that's why the claws version is blue and the weapon version is not (tashalatora monks can use vampiric blade on their unarmed attacks, however). This power is essential for the karmic strike/robilar's gambit route.
    Concealing Amorpha, Greater -- Only use this with the linked power feat, and there are probably lower level powers which you want more. The duration simply kills it.
    Dimension Slide -- Lets you teleport in line of sight and not lose your actions afterwards as dimension door does. Augmentable to use it as a move action, too, hence you can use it with hustle as a swift action to full attack from close range.
    Empathic Transfer, HostileSRD/CP -- Very good power if you use the SRD-version. When enemies make the save more and more, just augment it so it affects all creatures in a 20-foot-radius spread. It's mind-affecting though, so be aware of undead. As vampiric blade, this power makes the masochistic fighting style much better. If you use the complete psionic version, this power becomes too expensive.
    Evade Burst -- Evasion as an immediate action and agumentable to improved evasion. Evasion itself will do nothing for you, since your reflex save will typically be very low (unless you are really dex-heavy), that's why the ring of evasion does not come into equation here. This power becomes interesting once you can use it for improved evasion.
    Graft Weapon -- Fun power.
    Incarnum FusionMoI -- If you use psychic warrior as a dip in order to get claws of the beast, you probably lack the levels to get access to level 3 powers. If you are dipping into a soulmeld shaping class you will lack the essentia to frequently use this power.
    Keen Edge, Psionic -- It is a solid power but better save your powerpoints and get a scabbard of keen edges instead.
    Mental Barrier -- Has the potential to save you a ring slot and a lot of money (ring of deflection). If you do not lack these two however, this power becomes much less attractive.
    Telekinetic BoomerangCP -- Now this makes throwing builds great.
    Ubiquitous Vision -- Too situational and the enhancement boni to spot and search overlap with steadfast perception.

    4th Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Claw/Weapon of Energy -- If you haven't got anything better to do... May be useful for a crit-build.
    Dimension Door, PsionicCP/SRD -- Better than normal dimension door and that's really saying something (the CP version provides more augment-options). Use it with hustle to teleport yourself and your companions in a flash. But watch out, after you've used dimension door, you cannot perform any more actions in this round, so always use it last.
    Energy Adaptation -- Either get this or its smaller brother energy adaption, specified. Automatic scaling and the augment-option of manifesting it as an immediate action make this an excellent power which will serve you well for all levels. This power protects you from _all_ energy types.
    Freedom of Movement, Psionic -- As with mental barrier, this has to stand up to the ridiculously cheap ring of freedom of movement.
    Inertial Barrier -- Damage reduction is always nice, since it cannot be avoided. The duration is serviceable, too. The only problem is, that it doesn't scale and level 4 is really crowded with great powers. But for a defensive powerhouse and with the right party constellation this power can make a lot of sense.
    Open Chakra, PsionicMoI -- Useless if you are dipping into psychic warrior since it's level 4, otherwise this power is very versatile and can be a nice asset in your bag of tricks. Range touch, *and the 24 hour duration make this power really strong. The only reason why it's still green and not blue is its cost.
    Planar ApotheosisCP -- The horrible duration and the fact that other powers do simply better jobs, make this one negligible.
    Psychokinetic WeaponCP -- Skip this.
    Steadfast Perception -- A must-have in my book. Better than any level 5 psychic warrior power. Mind blank makes you immune to the enchantment school and this makes you immune to the greater part of illusions.
    Stygian DisruptionCP -- In an undead campaign this power is king.
    Truevenom /Weapon -- Very good for the level, but it will become a waste when opponents start to make the save frequently.

    5th Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Adapt Body -- Very useful utility power, but since your powers known list is awfully short, it's simply too situational. In a campaign with a lot of plane shifting this power probably becomes a must-have.
    Catapsi -- Only for psionic-heavy campaigns and the will negates part really make this power forgettable.
    Change Fateonline -- Great power. The only problem is that powers which cost 500 XP are very situational, which makes them suboptimal for manifesters with a short list of powers known. But you can just get it as a powerstone. If your campaign uses action points, the power becomes less strong.
    Empower Weapon -- Very useful but a little underwhelming for your second highest level of powers you can manifest.
    Living ArrowCP -- I don't think this power is worth it. It's simply too expensive and has a too short duration. Most of the time you won't need it if you've got steadfast perception up.
    Oak Body -- You get a lot of cool immunities but suffer a reduced speed. The duration makes this power not worth it though.
    Perfect RiposteCP -- Very solid power. Must-have for tashalatora-decisive-strike-builds. For me it's the best level 5 power.
    Psychofeedback -- This can be a nice buff, but the ability burn part makes this power unreliable and only viable for boss fights. As a sidenote, you obviously won't use your wisdom score as fuel, your int score has the heavy drawback of making you a dumbass, leaving only your charisma score which will in most cases be around 8.
    Stomp, GreaterCP -- Fun power for tripping big foes with four or more legs and a low reflex save. You can augment the damage and the save along with it. Expensive though.

    6th Level
    Spoiler
    Show
    Blackstone HammerCP -- Powers with saves are generally not that great for a psychic warrior and this one makes no exception. Especially at this level your powers have fallen behind so much, that your save DC cannot keep up.
    Breath of the Black Dragon -- Nice damage and very cool. Since it's acid damage it may have utility uses, too. But you are a psychic warrior and thus, nearly everybody will make the save.
    Combat Transformationonline -- You lose your manifesting abilities and cannot use use-activated or trigger psionic and magic items. Normally you'd skip this, but if you've got a psicrystal you can manifest it on the construct. Remember that your psicrystal still won't be able to attack without further buffs (like metamorphosis).
    Dispelling Buffer -- Great power to protect your buffs. You will eventually need this.
    Inconstant LocationCP -- Very cool and very useful in combat. The manifesting time requires that you use linked power (or schism if you have access to it).
    Form of Doom -- If you like the flavor, this is a very strong power.
    Mind Blank, Personal -- Unless you take 9 levels of the slayer prestige class, there is no excuse for not picking this, unless you buy a pearl of power VIII and let your party arcane caster buff you.
    Mind over EnergyCP -- You become immune to one energy type, but ultimately inferior to energy adaption in terms of versatility and duration. You don't have room for this. On a powerstone it could come in handy.
    Rage of the RemorhazCP -- A must-have for grapplers, effective in combination with robilar's gambit and karmic strike against opponents relying on natural weapons and generally very cool.

    Powers from other Lists
    Spoiler
    Show

    1st Level
    • Dimension Hop (freedom mantle) -- Very nice power because of its swift action manifesting time and it's augmentable. Very cheap in terms of powerpoints, too. Can be a substitute for dimension door.
    • Mindlink -- Great power if your party has to split up, or must keep quiet. Kalashtar get this as a racial ability. If you have a psicrystal, the construct is permanently mindlinked to you, which can be a substitute for the power.
    • Minor Creation, Psionic (creation mantle) -- Good for all the reasons why the minor creation spell is so great. If you need some advice on how to (ab)use this, check out its own thread: Minor Creation and You. Remember, the call item power is on your list and covers a lot of the same uses.

    2nd Level
    • Share Pain -- Get the psicrystal affinity feat, use this power on your psicrystal and share the vigor power. You take only half damage (your psicrystal takes the other half) and most of it is absorbed by your temporary hitpoints. This is an extremely effective combo which really kicks in from about level 10 when you have enough powerpoints to rely on this combo and still have powerpoints for other powers left.

    3rd Level
    • Dispel Psionics (magic mantle) -- Since it scales with your manifester level, this power does make sense to get. You can use it to surpress magic items, such as the ring of freedom of movement, for grappling, but remember that a D4 duration is nothing to get excited about. You normally have better things to do with your feat slots.
    • Psionic Repair Damage -- Nice to repair your psicrystal, great if you are a warforged and use it to heal you _and_ your psicrystal simultaneously via share power.

    4th Level
    • Fly, Psionic (freedom mantle) -- The power to fly changes combat as teleport changes everything else. If you're a tashalatora monk, your speedbonus also counts for your flyspeed. Get this.
    • Metamorphosis (natural world mantle) -- Cheese alert! Only here for the sake of completeness. This power is only recommended for the most high-powered campaigns with DMs who really know what they're dealing with. For Example, turn into a firbolg (MM2) and squish the crap out of your oppenents when grappling. For more information about metamorphosis please check out the following two threads: Polymorph, Wild Shape and Shapechange, oh my! (comparison charts) and The Complete Polymorph Thread 3.5
    • Psychic Reformation -- Use this if you like to rely on powers with saves. As soon as the DC of a power becomes too low, just use psychic reformation to select a different power. Btw, your teammates will worship the ground beneath you. Use psychic reformation with linked power for the ultimate cheese: Instead of a 10 minutes manifesting time, it is manifested in 1 round and as such easily (ab)useable in a fight which demands odd powers (the stygian line is a good example). No ordinary DM will allow this use without relying on combos of the same sort.
    • Schism -- It's similar to arcane spellsurge, only that it's fourth level. You get an additional standard action every round which you can only use for mental actions such as manifesting. But keep in mind, everything that messes up action economy is problematic.

    5th Level
    • Anticipatory StrikeCP (time mantle) -- It's a lot like celerity but better and without the drawbacks. You can make your turn as an immediate action (with detect hostile intent this can really let you automatically go first, regardless of initiative or surprise). Yes, turn. Not one action. Your whole turn. And you are not dazed next round. Use this with extreme caution. This power can ruin encounters and cause a very upset DM.
    • Crystal BodyDM (creation mantle) -- If you've already got access to the creation mantle i wouldn't think twice about whether or not to select this power. This can be a really nice tool in your arsenal and level 5 psychic warrior powers are generally a little underwhelming. The immunities are great (just don't use it against a tashalatora monk (crystalline creatures and ki strike)).
    • Teleport, Psionic (freedom mantle) -- Since level 5 powers are pretty weak, you might as well get the most game-changing utility power in the game. But beware, you don't want to wake up and realize that you have become the party's taxi cab over night and have to waste your precious power points.
    • True Seeing, Psionic (justice mantle) -- Much better than the arcane version, because it doesn't cost you 250 gp every time you manifest it. But the duration is still horrible and it doesn't do much more for you than steadfast perception, which is one level lower.

    6th Level
    • Null Psionics Field (magic mantle) -- It's just like an antimagic field. This means great power, but you also gimp yourself. Very situational.
    • Temporal Acceleration (time mantle) -- Time stop as a level 6 power and manifested with a swift action. Thus, after you have acted accelerated you can act as normal and attack and so on. The only drawback is that you become shaken -- ridiculous drawback in my opinion.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2011-01-28 at 04:50 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    X. Multiclassing
    (Variation is Key to Mastery in the Art)


    Using a big _pointy_ stick instead, can lead to unexpected results.

    "I see that mixing with us has made you a cunning strategist."
    -- Platypus to Convolvulus on his newly gained warmongering skills


    Multiclassing can be great to gain some class features, more BAB and better saves, but there are a few issues you have to consider when doing it:

    • Watch Your Manifester Level: First and foremost, you should never lose manifester levels without a very good reason. Unfortunately, there are no multiclassing options available which do not cost manifester levels. The practiced manifester feat is great for compensating a loss of manifester levels and is obligatory if you lose more than one. In any case, it has to be really worth it to lose manifester levels: Gaining a fourth attack or great class features, for example. But no matter what, no class is worth it to lose access to 6th level powers.

    • XP-Penalty: Another issue with multiclassing is the wretched favored class rule which results in an XP-penalty. Any race which doesn't have any or psychic warrior as a favored class, will cause this problem with other base classes. Of course, this is no problem if you stick to prestige classes.

    • Feats: Do not invest too many feats in prerequisites, or you may have trouble to complete your concept. The psychic warrior has all these bonus feats for a reason.

    • Skills: Typically you won't have more than 2-4 skillpoints per level. This may make it difficult to qualify for prestige classes. It is a good idea to pick up more skillpoints and nice class skills via multiclassing, however.


    Base Classes

    • Monk
      Spoiler
      Show

      Pro
      • Class Skills
      • Monk Abilities
      • Saves
      • Bonus Feats which ignore Prerequisites

      Contra
      • 2 lost Manifester Levels
      • Loss of BAB
      • Requires 2 Feats


      By taking the monastic training and tashalatora feats you can stack your monk abilities (AC-bonus, fast movement, flurry of blows, slow fall, unarmed damage) with your psychic warrior levels. This is the road to the best monk builds out there.

      The monk class gives you a good skilllist, 4 skillpoints per level, 3 good saves, evasion, bonus feats and monk abilities. In my book this is a very strong dip (usually there is no reason to take more than 2 levels of monk and you surely never take more than 6).

      With expansion, the improved natural attack feat and your unarmed damage progression, you should be able to deal lots of damage. The best way to utilize this, is probably via the passive way monk variant which gives you improved trip as a bonus feat at second level. Your advantage as a monk in this respect: You do not need to have an intelligence score of 13. You can then get knock-down and trip everything you hit for 10 points of damage or more and profit from the free attack provided by improved trip, too.

      Another option is using flurry of blows, the claws of the beast and tail of the dragon powers and two-weapon fighting for a whole lot of attacks. This is however far more complicated to pull off. Since you do not deal any bonus damage the stormguard warrior feat becomes very interesting, and a single level dip into warblade can work wonders.

      Since the standard monk gets combat reflexes as a bonus feat at second level, karmic strike and robilar's gambit can be taken into consideration, too. Vampiric weapon is a power which lets you heal your half base weapon damage, which will be very high if you fight with your unarmed strikes. This allows you to reduce the drawbacks of this fighting style, since you can heal up after your enemy hit you. It is still very risky, since there are monsters which can turn off your lights if they get a combined +8 bonus on their attacks against you. Another advantage of the monk over other classes using this tactic, is the decisive strike ACF because every one of your hits will deal double damage. This helps a lot, since this style requires a high dexterity score to work, otherwise you will run out of attacks of opportunity fast.
    • Tome of Battle Classes
      Spoiler
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      A one or two level dip into any of the 3 martial classes can work wonders for builds. The thicket of blades stance available to the crusader is pretty powerful for builds relying on combat reflexes. The warblade gives access to the enormously powerful stormguard warrior feat, and the swordsage can provide 2d6 sneak attack damage, which is very handy for two-weapon fighters, and access to the shadow blade feat.

      Remember however, that each of these classes means a loss in manifester level and the swordsage even means a loss in base attack bonus.


    Prestige Classes

    • Psychic Weapon Master
      Spoiler
      Show

      Pro
      • Full BAB
      • Class Features
      • Class Skills
      • 4 Skillpoints/Level

      Contra
      • Loss of 5 Manifester Levels
      • Saves


      This class requires a whole bunch of useless feats and loses you 5 manifester levels. That said, you can build a high-crit scythe-wielder, who ends encounters on a crit. Personally, I think that this class is made obsolete with the soulbound weapon ACF.

      Warning: If you take more than 8 levels in this class, you will lose the ability to manifest 6th level powers.
    • Sanctified Mind
      Spoiler
      Show

      Pro
      • Full BAB
      • Class Features
      • Class Skills
      • 4 Skillpoints/Level
      • Saves


      Contra
      • 1 lost Manifester Level
      • Costs one horrible Feat


      This prestige class gives you high base attack bonus, which gives you the chance to get 4 attacks, 2 good saves and 4 skillpoints per level. The class features are rather disappointing. You pay all this by losing one manifester level and you have to waste a feat slot on iron will.
    • Slayer
      Spoiler
      Show

      Pro
      • Full BAB
      • Class Features
      • Class Skills
      • 4 Skillpoints/Level


      Contra
      • 1 lost Manifester Level
      • Costs one probably useless Feat


      As with the sanctified mind, this prestige class provides a high base attack bonus and 4 skillpoints per level. You lose a manifester level and have to take track. Most of the class abilities are very aberration-specific, but the level 9 power is very cool, because it resembles a personal mind blank, otherwise a level 6 power.

      As for the more skillful approach mentioned in the introduction, the slayer prestige class has track as a prerequisite and so you could build a scout if you like. But you still won't be able to detect and disarm traps. In roleplaying terms the track feat fits a bounty hunter extremely well.
    • Warshaper
      Spoiler
      Show

      Pro
      • Class Features


      Contra
      • No manifesting progression
      • Loses bab
      • Requirements

      This is mainly a one-level dip for the smackers out there. The morphic weapons class feature let's you increase the size of one of your natural weapons, which results in dealing more damage. The other abilities it gets, are alle great as well, but you lose so many manifester levels that it's probably not worth it.

      What I don't like about it is that it needs the metamorphosis power and a tweak to qualify (metamorphosis is not listed as a valid prerequisite). You can qualify as a changeling without any trouble, which is the only point in playing a changeling psychic warrior (aside from roleplaying and style aspects).


    The Psychic Warrior as a Dip
    • Swift Hunter
      Spoiler
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      You can use psychic warrior in a swift hunter build. Take 4 levels and select hustle, or maybe even better: Get dimension hop via the freedom mantle or expanded knowledge. This replaces the need for travel devotion. Check out Dictum Mortuum's The Swift Hunter's Handbook for more information.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-11-15 at 12:31 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    XI. Items
    (The Bigger the Stick, the Better the Result)



    "Oof! I was afraid it was obsolete!"
    -- Magnumopus to his big deep brown crystal stick


    Even a master of the psychological warfare relies on tools for his trade. Here you'll find information specifically for your psychic warrior. For an overview of the best items in the game, visit Bunko's Bargain Basement.

    Armor and Weapons
    Spoiler
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    Deep CrystalSRD -- This special material for weapons allows you to convert powerpoints into bonus damage. Very similar to arcane strike, but this one only costs you 1000 goldpieces instead of a featslot.
    ManifesterSRD -- Additional powerpoints are always welcome. This enchantment has a fixed price, so there is no excuse for not enchanting your gear with this. If cheesy combos are allowed in your campaign, use this enchantment on a bundle of arrows: 50*5 powerpoints drawn as a free action.
    MindfeederSRD -- Very expensive, but if used with a high-crit build, this enchantment can be worth it.
    Power StoringSRD -- Nice enchantment, but the cost (+1 bonus) can be too high.
    PsychicSRD -- Combine this with the mindfeeder enchantment for great use in a high crit build.
    Reach Weapons -- If you combine a reach weapon with the expansion power you can get a 30 feet reach! That's because reach weapons double a wielder's reach, now if you use expansion to become huge you would have a natural reach of 15 feet, which doubles to 30 feet. If you use the half-ogre race or metamorphosis (*shudder*)...

    Psionic Items
    Spoiler
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    Cognizance CrystalsSRD -- They are worth it. At least try to get the 5-point version. The craft universal item feat can help to get one earlier and cheaper (or maybe even at all).
    DorjesSRD -- Nice for powers which do not rely on manifester level to be effective. It's very similar to a wand, but dorjes above 1st level are horrendously expensive.
    Ectoplasmic FistECS -- This is an implant only open for kalashtars and inspired. It costs you 4.000 gold and 1 hit point, but you get an effective size increase for your unarmed attacks! This is just crazy cheap for what it does. A must-have for kalashtar tashalatoras.
    Gloves of Titan’s GripSRD -- Great for grapplers and with the craft universal item feat, you can make them yourself.
    Power LinkMoE -- Wow. This is just crazy. For 3.000 gold and 1 hit point kalashtars and inspired can implant this quori shard. A single shard provides 2 powerpoints which can be used to augment powers beyond the normal limit(!) thrice per day. A level 20 manifester could theoretically implant 20 power links (cost: 20 hp and 60.000 gold) and then overchannel a power with 40 points thrice per day.
    Power StonesSRD -- Cool for a cheap access to powers which are really useful once in a while.
    PsicrownsSRD -- Way too expensive for my taste. And a lot of the crowns feature powers you cannot even use, because they are not on your list. The only way I see that they become somewhat useable, is through the mantled warrior ACF and tap mantle feat.
    Psychoactive SkinsSRD -- With the craft universal item feat, you can make a lot of these yourself (which may also be the only way to make them accessible). The proteus version is completely over the top and a-must-have for every hardcore build. Several others may be really nice for some builds (e.g. Skin of the Claw, Skin of Nimbleness).
    Torc of Power PreservationSRD -- Simply a must-have. Powerpoints are precious.

    Miscellaneous
    Spoiler
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    Fanged RingDM -- Gives you improved natural attack _and_ improved natural attack (unarmed strike). Two feats for 10.000 gold is what I call a good bargain. If your DM allows this item, get one for our tashalatora monk and don't bother with wasting a feat.
    Mighty ArmsFoE -- A graft which gives you the arms of a warforged, meaning that you get a slam attack and qualify for the battlefist component (see below). It costs you 1.000 gold and 2 hit points, which is pretty cheap. If you are a warforged, you can skip this of course.
    • Battlefist (attached component)ECS -- Only warforged and characters with the mighty arms graft are qualified to have this attached. It increases your effective size for calculating unarmed strike damage by on category, can be enhanced like a weapon (the basic version is +1) and counts as an unarmed strike for monks. Yes, this is great. Now combine this with an ectoplasmic fist and a fanged ring for a total cost of 13.600 gold and 3 hit points, to deal damage like gargantuan monk.

    Monk's BeltSRD -- This keeps a tashalatora monk's unarmed strike damage up, if you take levels in the slayer or sanctified mind prestige classes. It's also useful for non-monks relying on unarmed attacks.
    Necklace of Natural WeaponsSS -- This can be enchanted and enhanced just like a weapon, which makes it a lot cheaper than the amulet of mighty fists, which cannot even be enchanted. As with weapons you can just buy a +1 enhancement bonus, enchant it worth of a +5 bonus and then use metaphysical claw/weapon or let your party caster buff you with greater magic fang/weapon. The only downside is, that it uses up the same slot as the torc of power preservation.
    This is 3.0 material however, so by all means check with your DM first.
    Otyugh HoleCS -- Not really an item but a special location, this grants you the iron will feat, which is needed for the sanctified mind prestige class. 3.000 gold for an otherwise horrible feat is simply great. Your DM may think otherwise, though.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-08-09 at 07:46 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    XII. Builds
    (The Fully Trained Disciples of the Art of Psychological Warfare)


    Magnumopus, Grandchampion of Psychological Warfare

    "Duh! I'm telling them about psychological warfare."
    -- Magnumopus


    The builds presented here follow the model of the combat roles presented in chapter III. As such, they are categorized in the same mold. Take these as examples and not as dogmas.

    "Yo dowg. We herd u liek smacks. So we put a smack in your smack, so you can smack while you smack!" (dobu)
    First off, I'd like to introduce the "King of Smack". It truly was a revelation in the early days of 3.5 psionics. The point of it is to use the claws of the beast power and optimize it. To pull this off, you need to qualify for rapidstrike, which you do as an elan, a synad or a dragonwrought kobold. If you need more info just visit the build's thread linked above.


    Basic
    Spoiler
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    • Half-Giant Psychic Warrior20



      32-Point-Buy: 18 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: earth sense, psychic warrior: power attack
      2: psychic warrior: mantled warrior (freedom mantle)
      3: earth power
      5: psychic warrior: linked power
      6: psionic meditation
      8: Psychic Warrior: metapower (expansion, linked power)
      9: mage slayer
      11: Psychic Warrior: Tap Mantle (Time Mantle)
      12: pierce magical protection
      14: Psychic Warrior: Psionic Weapon
      15: Deep Impact
      17: Psychic Warrior: Overchannel
      18: Talented
      20: Psychic Warrior: Greater Psionic Weapon


    Charging
    Spoiler
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    • Half-Orc Paragon3/Psychic Warrior8/Slayer9 (by dobu)



      32-Point-Buy: 18 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 10 INT, 16 WIS, 6 CHA

      1 Power Attack
      3 Extra Rage
      4 Psychic Warrior: Improved Bullrush
      5 Psychic Warrior: Improved Sunder
      6 Reckless Rage
      8 Psychic Warrior: Shock Trooper
      9 Track
      11 Psychic Warrior: Combat Brute
      12 Leap Attack
      15 Leap of the Heavens
      18 Extra Rage

      Must-Have Powers: Psionic Lion's Charge, Hustle.

    Grappling
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    • HULK!!! Half-Ogre Monk2/Psychic Warrior12/Sanctified Mind6



      32-Point-Buy: 22 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 10 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: earth sense, monk: improved grapple, improved unarmed strike
      2: monk: monastic training (psychic warrior)
      3: earth power, psychic warrior: linked power
      4: psychic warrior: mantled warrior (freedom mantle)
      6: psionic meditation
      7: psychic warrior: metapower (linked power: expansion)
      9: improved natural attack
      10: psychic warrior: practiced manifester
      12: iron will
      13: psychic warrior: expanded knowledge (schism)
      15: snap kick
      18: superior unarmed strike

      Must-Have Powers: Expansion and Iron Grip.

    Masochistic Style
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    • Githzerai Psychic Warrior8/Sanctified Mind6/Psychic Warrior6



      32-Point-Buy: 12 STR, 22 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA
      (The first increase at level 4 must go to intelligence, the second at level 8 must go to strength.)

      Feats:
      1: exotic weapon proficiency (spiked chain), psychic warrior: combat reflexes
      2: psychic warrior: weapon finesse
      3: dodge
      5: psychic warrior: combat expertise
      6: karmic strike
      8: psychic warrior: power attack
      9: deft opportunist
      12: stand still
      15: robilar's gambit
      17: psychic warrior: linked power
      18: improved trip
      20: psychic warrior: practiced manifester
      Get iron will via the otyugh hole.

    • Human Monk2/Psychic Warrior18 (by dobu)
      32-Point-Buy: 14 STR, 16 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 14 WIS, 8 CHA

      1: combat reflexes, passive way monk (ACF: Decisive Strike): combat expertise, improved unarmed strike, human: stand still
      2: monk: monastic training (psychic warrior)
      3: tashalatora, psychic warrior: weapon finesse
      4: psychic warrior: dodge
      6: karmic strike
      7: psychic warrior: two-weapon fighting
      9: deft opportunist
      10: psychic warrior: improved two-weapon fighting
      12: improved natural attack
      13: psychic warrior: double hit
      15: snap kick
      16: psychic warrior: practiced manifester
      18: robilar's gambit
      19: psychic warrior: opportunity power

    Ranged
    Spoiler
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    • Composite Bow Build: Kalashtar Psychic Warrior10/Slayer10



      32-Point-Buy: 15 STR, 14 DEX, 14 CON, 10 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: rapid shot, psychic warrior: point blank shot
      2: psychic warrior: mantled warrior (freedom mantle)
      3: zen archery
      4: precise shot
      6: psionic meditation
      7: psychic warrior: psionic shot
      9: track
      10: psychic warrior: fell shot
      12: linked power
      15: improved precise shot
      18: expanded knowledge (schism)

    • Dual Shield Throwing Build: Duergar Psychic Warrior20
      32-Point-Buy: 16 STR, 14 DEX, 14 CON, 10 INT, 16 WIS, 4 CHA

      Feats:
      1: improved shield bash, psychic warrior: shield specialization
      2: psychic warrior: shield ward
      3: zen archery
      5: psychic warrior: two-weapon fighting
      6: point blank shot
      8: psychic warrior: improved two-weapon fighting
      9: rapid shot
      11: psychic warrior: precise shot
      12: shield sling
      14: psychic warrior: far shot
      15: improved precise shot
      17: psychic warrior: greater two-weapon fighting
      18: woodland archer
      20: psychic warrior: linked power

      Must-Have Powers: Perfect Archery, Telekinetic Boomerang.

    Sword & Board
    Spoiler
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    • Half-Giant Psychic Warrior14/Sanctified Mind6



      32-Point-Buy: 18 STR, 10 DEX, 16 CON, 10 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: Shield Specialization, Psychic Warrior: Improved Shield Bash
      2: Psychic Warrior: Shield Ward
      3: Agile Shield Fighter
      5: Psychic Warrior: Shield Charge
      6: Shielded Manifesting
      8: Psychic Warrior: Shield Slam
      9: Earth Sense
      11: Psychic Warrior: Earth Power
      12: Iron Will
      14: Linked Power
      15: Metapower (Linked Power: Expansion)
      18: Psionic Meditation

    Two-Weapon Fighting Style
    Spoiler
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    • Gatling Smacker Build: Human Warblade1/Monk2/Psychic Warrior11/Sanctified Mind6
      32-Point-Buy: 10 STR, 16 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: two-weapon fighting, human: ironheart aura
      2: sleeping tiger monk: improved unarmed strike, weapon finesse
      3: multiattack, monk: monastic training (psychic warrior)
      4: psychic warrior: practiced manifester
      5: psychic warrior: mantled warrior (freedom mantle)
      6: tashalatora
      8: psychic warrior: improved two-weapon fighting
      9: stormguard warrior
      11: psychic warrior: linked power
      12: improved natural attack
      14: psychic warrior: expanded knowledge (metamorphosis)
      15: snap kick
      18: greater two-weapon fighting
      Get iron will via the otyugh hole.

      Must-Have Powers: Bite of the Wolf, Claws of the Beast, Tail of the Dragon and Hustle.

    • Lightning Mace Build: Human Warblade1/Psychic Warrior12/Fighter1/Sanctified Mind6
      32-Point-Buy: 10 STR, 16 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: iron heart aura, human: weapon finesse
      2: psychic warrior: two-weapon fighting
      3: combat reflexes, psychic warrior: mantled warrior (freedom mantle)
      6: weapon focus (light mace), psychic warrior: linked power
      9: stormguard warrior, psychic warrior: improved two-weapon fighting
      12: practiced manifester, psychic warrior: psionic meditation
      14: Fighter: Improved Critical (Light Mace)
      15: Lightning Mace
      18: greater two-weapon fighting
      Get iron will via the otyugh hole.

    • Dual Light Shield Melee Build: Duergar Psychic Warrior14/Sanctified Mind6
      32-Point-Buy: 16 STR, 14 DEX, 14 CON, 14 INT, 14 WIS, 4 CHA

      Feats:
      1: improved shield bash, psychic warrior: combat expertise
      2: psychic warrior: mantled warrior(freedom mantle)
      3: weapon finesse
      5: psychic warrior: two-weapon fighting
      6: inlindl school
      8: psychic warrior: improved two-weapon fighting
      9: parrying shield
      11: psychic warrior: linked power
      12: earth sense
      14: psychic warrior: improved trip
      15: earth power
      18: greater two-weapon fighting
      Get iron will via the otyugh hole.

    Tripping
    Spoiler
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    • Talashatora Build: Synad Monk2/Psychic Warrior18



      32-Point-Buy: 16 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 12 INT, 16 WIS, 8 CHA

      Feats:
      1: monastic training (psychic warrior), passive way monk: combat expertise, improved unarmed strike
      2: passive way monk: improved trip
      3: synad multitask, enhanced, psychic warrior: knock-down
      4: psywar: mantled warrior acf (freedom mantle)
      6: tashalatora
      7: psywar: linked power
      9: improved natural attack (unarmed strike)
      10: psychic warrior: practiced manifester
      12: snap kick
      13: psychic warrior: psionic meditation
      15: earth sense
      16: psychic warrior: metapower (expansion, linked power)
      18: earth power
      19: psychic warrior: expanded knowledge (temporal acceleration)
    Last edited by zugschef; 2010-08-04 at 04:31 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    XIII. To Do List and Update History
    (Inspired by Forum-Members)

    To Do List
    Spoiler
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    • Include the Defender of Sardior and Sardior's Knowledge
    • Expand the discurse on Magic of Incarnum (girallon arms, sphinx claws, manticore belt,...)
    • Expand the discurse on the ToB classes
    • Improve the Builds Chapter


    Updates
    Spoiler
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    • Included "On getting Powers from other Lists" in the Powers Section

    • Added a few powers and feats and included MoI
      Done: Added the channel the psychic dragon and crystal body powers, and the instant clarity and psychic renewal feats. Added Azure Talent, Midnight Augmentation, Psycarnum Crystal, Psycarnum Infusion, Incarnum Fusion and Open Chakra, Psionic. Included meldshapers as dip.

    • Added quicken power and biofeedback

    • Fixed some errors and added some material:
      Done: Dimension Door, Inertial Barrier, Dimension Slide, Assassin's stance, Illumians, Deflective Armor, Craft/Profession

    • Added several powers and feats...
      Done: Added Dispel Psionics, Minor Creation, Psychic Reformation, Strength of my Enemy and Psionic Repair Damage Powers, elan racial feats, psionic crafting feats, psychoactive skins and gloves of titan's grip. Modified entries on elans and warforged. Added the magic mantle speciality.

    • Updated Powers

    • Primordial Giant Template
      Done: Included it in the races chapter.

    • The Mind's Eye: Power Conversions
      Done: Added the call item, change fate and combat transformation.

    • Aberrations (Elans, Synads) and (Improved) Rapidstrike
      Done: Edited the two races and added the feats.
      Left: ?

    • The King of Smack
      Done: Linked and introduced it in the combat roles and builds sections.

    • Psicrystals
      Done: Integrated it as part of the ACF chapter. Linked to the mount handbook.
      Left: Something I am not aware of?

    • Combo: Psicrystal + Vigor + Share Pain
      Done: combat roles, psionic feats, level 1 powers and powers from other lists
      Left: updating builds

    • Call Weaponry, Metaphysical Weapon and Offensive Precognition
      Done: Edited the entries to these powers.

    • Warshaper
      Done: Added it to the prestige classes.

    • Reach Weapons
      Done: Added it to the items chapter and edited the expansion power.

    • Quori Embedded Shards (Power Link, Ectoplasmic Fist Quori), Mighty Arms Warforged Graft and Battlefist
      Done: Added warforged race, edited the kalashtar entry, added quori shards, the graft and the battlefist to the items chapter.
    Last edited by zugschef; 2011-01-24 at 08:59 AM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    reserve post 2

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Very nice guide, but I disagree with a lot of your ratings. Vigor, for example is godly good, and turns you into an immense tank with a psicrystal and share pain. Very pretty guide though.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Very well laid out guide. One thing I noticed that you've neglected is a nod to the aberrant races (Elan and Synad) in the regard that they are the only non-LA PC races that can qualify for (Improved) Rapid Strike (Draconomicon), since its only available for Dragons, Aberrations, Plants, and a couple others. Rapid Strike and Improved Rapid Strike are VERY good for Claws of the Beast style Kings of Smack, as it gives you iterative attacks with your Claws. Even if you don't take Improved Rapid Strike, Rapid Strike alone doubles your attacks per round.

    Also, love the VERY subtle nod to the Basketweaver's Handbook. Classy.
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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    How could you fail to discuss the King of Smack and his progeny (President of Smack, etc)? Claws of the Vampire (which is the Psychic Warrior's signature power, IMO) doesn't just make the Masochist more playable. Claws of the Vampire + DR/Share Pain/etc + Increased Effective Size + AoO is the whole point.

    Also, I disagree with most of your ratings and suggested builds. But I don't have time for a point by point discussion right now.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Tinydwarfman View Post
    Very nice guide, but I disagree with a lot of your ratings. Vigor, for example is godly good, and turns you into an immense tank with a psicrystal and share pain. Very pretty guide though.
    This is the only big miss I see here. Psicrystal Affinity, Share Pain and Vigor, together, basically let you take half-damage for a good part of non AoE damage.
    (and prepare to laugh your ass off if someone wants to chain lightning you)

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    I disagree with some of the ratings as well, but most intensely I disagree with the subtitle!

    Psychological Warfare is the act of messing with someone’s mind. Now, while planting an axe through someone’s mind is technically messing with it, it’s not psychological warfare. Psychological warfare is making him think you’re going to plant the axe in his head and make him worry about it so much he wears a heavier and heavier helmet till the weight of his helmet crushes his skull for you.

    Then you take his stuff.
    "We speak for the dead. We are all they have when the wicked steal their voice. But we do not owe them our lives."

    Roy Montgomery, NYPD Sgt., Castle

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by AtwasAwamps View Post
    I disagree with some of the ratings as well, but most intensely I disagree with the subtitle!

    Psychological Warfare is the act of messing with someone’s mind. Now, while planting an axe through someone’s mind is technically messing with it, it’s not psychological warfare. Psychological warfare is making him think you’re going to plant the axe in his head and make him worry about it so much he wears a heavier and heavier helmet till the weight of his helmet crushes his skull for you.

    Then you take his stuff.
    I know that. The point is: This is meant as a joke, based on the comic "Asterix and the Roman Agent" where the Roman legionaires misunderstand the agent's scheme and think that psychological warfare means hitting a guy on the head with a club.

    As for me missing on the vigor power and consorts: Thank you, for bringing this to my attention! As soon as I have the time, I will try to correct this.

    I really appreciate your feedback and would welcome some more! =)

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    First of all, thanks for creating a psychic warrior guide, the others you can find online while very well thought out are sadly very much incomplete.

    The Psychological Warfare subtitle is I think only a little word-pun and shouldn´t be interpreted as much

    I think flashing out the ToB multiclassing part would be a great idea, it is a very unexplored part for most builds but I think it holds a great appeal even beyond the 1 level dip (even without a dedicated prc).

    A few of the powers I would have rated differently as well maybe you want to revisit those suggested by others.

    I like your chosen pics

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by zugschef View Post
    I know that. The point is: This is meant as a joke, based on the comic "Asterix and the Roman Agent" where the Roman legionaires misunderstand the agent's scheme and think that psychological warfare means hitting a guy on the head with a club.

    As for me missing on the vigor power and consorts: Thank you, for bringing this to my attention! As soon as I have the time, I will try to correct this.

    I really appreciate your feedback and would welcome some more! =)
    OHHHHHH.

    ...moving on.
    "We speak for the dead. We are all they have when the wicked steal their voice. But we do not owe them our lives."

    Roy Montgomery, NYPD Sgt., Castle

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    I have added chapter XIII. To Do List and updated the handbook regarding psicrystals and the use of the corresponding combo with share pain and vigor.

    The other suggestions will be implemented as soon as I have time, but this (psicrystals) seemed to be the most important part missing.

    Additional input is still very much welcome. =)

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    One thing I noticed that you've neglected is a nod to the aberrant races (Elan and Synad) in the regard that they are the only non-LA PC races that can qualify for (Improved) Rapid Strike (Draconomicon), since its only available for Dragons, Aberrations, Plants, and a couple others. Rapid Strike and Improved Rapid Strike are VERY good for Claws of the Beast style Kings of Smack, as it gives you iterative attacks with your Claws. Even if you don't take Improved Rapid Strike, Rapid Strike alone doubles your attacks per round.
    Le Bump.

    Also, my bad, but Dragonwraught Kobalds also qualify for Rapid Strike, but are less good at it due to starting at 1 size catagory smaller than Elans or Synads. Rapid Strike is a balanced part of this complete Claws of the Beast mauling. Draconomnomnomnomnomicon is the source.
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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Call Weaponry, Metaphysical Weapon and Offensive Precognition have an odd relationship.
    Metaweapon can be replaced a bit more easily, since it is an enhancement bonus, but it lasts longer.
    However, augmenting its power is identical to Call Weaponry, so psywarriors with those(especially the Soulbounds) don't really benefit from it.

    Precognition spans the whole character, so it applies to all attacks you happen to have available, be they natural, crafted, or ranged. But it is shorter(minute/level) and doesn't help against damage reduction.

    So, basically, there are 3 situations
    1) Soulbound Warrior. This guy doesn't have to think twice between Meta or Precognition. With a 1pp freely augmented weapon you really don't care about the minutes/level duration of the weapon nor the precognition.

    2) One reliable weapon. Here you have a pick between being free from gear needs, or spending more power to dish out more damage.

    3) Gatling Puncher. This guy has two or more attacks in the routine. Those who pick bite/tail in addition to either claws or iterative attacks(or both for them Tashalatora) has far too many attacks to augment individually.

    #3 is the most expensive one, recommended only for those that can sustain going nova a couple times per day.
    #2 can be covered by Greater Magic Weapon.

    I don't know how to evaluate between 2 and 3. The longer duration is good to spend the day in the dungeon, but at the same time most encounters don't justify burning much power either.

    Of course, they are all worth consumables, so keeping that Dorje ready is a no brainer.
    Last edited by Snake-Aes; 2010-08-03 at 12:18 PM.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    One point to consider: Half-Ogre (tagged as Blue) was a +1 LA Template in Savage Species, but Races of Destiny has the Half-Ogre as a LA +2 race. If a DM decides the race supercedes the template, it does get a bit worse (probably a downgrade to green).
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel, on quest rewards View Post
    "Is a stack of ten pancakes too many pancakes to give to the party, even if most of them fell on the floor and one or two were stepped on? I wanted to give my party pancakes as a reward but I'm unsure if it's too much. The pancakes are also laced with blowfish poison so the party would have to get an antitoxin before they could eat the ones which weren't pulverized by shoes."

    I don't think anyone would want those pancakes even if you paid them to eat them.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    Also, my bad, but Dragonwraught Kobalds also qualify for Rapid Strike, but are less good at it due to starting at 1 size catagory smaller than Elans or Synads. Rapid Strike is a balanced part of this complete Claws of the Beast mauling. Draconomnomnomnomnomicon is the source.
    Added the information to the races and the two feats. I won't add kobolds in the near future, though.^^

    Quote Originally Posted by Snake-Aes View Post
    Call Weaponry, Metaphysical Weapon and Offensive Precognition have an odd relationship.[...]
    Added to the to do list. thanks for your insight in this.

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Glyphstone View Post
    One point to consider: Half-Ogre (tagged as Blue) was a +1 LA Template in Savage Species, but Races of Destiny has the Half-Ogre as a LA +2 race. If a DM decides the race supercedes the template, it does get a bit worse (probably a downgrade to green).
    Ah thanks! Changed this and I also added mongrefolk.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by zugschef View Post
    RapidstrikeDrac -- Only open for aberrations, dragons, elementals, magical beasts and plants, but fortunately elans and synads actually are of the aberration type. Take this for your claws to get another attack.
    • Improved RapidstrikeDrac -- You get another attack. No kidding.
    Pickin another nit, but its actually 2 extra attacks. One with each claw. Improved Rapid Strike gives you 2 more extra attacks, for a total of 3 with each claw at the normal iterative attack decline (BAB-5 for the 2nd, BAB-10 for the 3rd).
    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
    AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY!
    _________________________________
    A beholder’s favorite foods include small live mammals, exotic mushrooms and other fungi, gnomes, beef, pork, colorful leafy vegetables, leaves, flower petals, insects, and birds.

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    Pickin another nit, but its actually 2 extra attacks. One with each claw. Improved Rapid Strike gives you 2 more extra attacks, for a total of 3 with each claw at the normal iterative attack decline (BAB-5 for the 2nd, BAB-10 for the 3rd).
    ah, ok. i guess this feat is blue then.^^

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    Default Re: [3.5] The Psychic Warrior Handbook

    Yea...thats EXACTLY why I was trying to stress how important being Elan or Synad is for a Claws of the Beast/Claws of the Vampire style PsyWar. Its just THAT good.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
    AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY!
    _________________________________
    A beholder’s favorite foods include small live mammals, exotic mushrooms and other fungi, gnomes, beef, pork, colorful leafy vegetables, leaves, flower petals, insects, and birds.

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