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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Ok so I'm new here, but I need some outside opinions on a project I've been working on.

    My normal 3.5 group has adopted a bunch of newbies who are insisting on playing 5th and only 5th. This isn't completely bad, I mean 5th so far is nice. The main problem is the lack of options compared to 3.5. We have 10 people in our group, and most don't like doubling up on classes so we're hitting a wall.

    To combat this wall I've started trying to rework Psion so it may work with 5th. I used the power points per level chart from the back of the DMG, with a few modifications. The main problem I'm having is balancing spell damage. I tended towards the lower side since augmenting was an integral part of the 3.5 Psion and I wanted to keep that aspect.

    Anyway.... below is what I've come up with. It is the main class description, power list, and power descriptions so it is a bit lengthy. I would love helpful feedback, I really would like to give my group at least one more option.

    The class is built without the 1 spell per level over 6 restriction, because that is currently how we run if someone uses spell points. It could easily follow the DMG rules though.

    Psion (google docs file) -Updated, 6/18/15-
    Last edited by Daelyna; 2015-06-18 at 08:56 AM.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    I think it looks fantastic.

    You still need to come up with subclasses and find a space to put them on the sheet. The ability to learn certain "School Only" abilities is nice, as is the skill proficiency, but take a look at the Wizard School subclasses or Cleric Domains for inspiration on advancing abilities.

    The Psionic Powers are also really nice. Very thematic and interesting! I suggest creating a cap for augmentation beyond "Your Power Point Limit" however, as otherwise encounters could become trivialized. Maybe make the limit equal to the cost of the highest power one can manifest? Then the most points someone could pump into a power at 17 or higher would be 17 (The cost of manifesting a 9th level power) while a level 1 psion could only augment by 1 point (the cost of a 1st level power).

    I especially love how the 8th and 9th level "Standard" powers have no augment option while the specific school powers do have augment options. It's a great design choice that really makes those powers valuable!
    Last edited by Steampunkette; 2015-06-15 at 05:33 PM.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    There's a ton of powers that are simply copy-pasta'd from 3rd edition with little to no editing, reflecting rules or other effects that no longer exist or apply in 5th edition.
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Some comments.

    Powers Known
    You know three 1st-level spells of your choice
    Spells?

    Psionic Specialty
    ...Your choice grants you +1 to power modifiers and +1 to Save DCís with spells of your chosen specialty.
    Does anything in 5e grant a similar bonus? I don't think so, and if that's true, the Psion would be the strictly best caster at any level.

    You may also gain a feat instead of increasing your ability scores.
    That's not part of a class description. That info is added when using the optional "Feat" rules.

    Attraction
    Telepathy (Charm) [Mind-Affecting]
    Casting Time: 1 action
    Range: 60 feet
    Display: Auditory
    Duration: 1 hour/level
    "Mind Affecting" isn't a meaningful 5e tag. And I don't think they ever use the "1 Time-unit/Level" formula for duration in 5e spells.

    For every 2 additional power points you spend, this powerís save DC increases by 1 and the bonus on interaction checks increases by 1.
    Spell DCs work differently. They aren't set by spell level and thus need to be augmented. They increase as proficiency & spellcasting atribute modifier increases. So if you cast this as a higher level character the DC is automatically higher. Augments beyond that are potentially overpowered.

    Bolt
    ...Ammunition you create has a +1 enhancement bonus on attack rolls and damage rolls.
    Augment: For every 3 additional power points you spend, this power improves the ammunitionís enhancement bonus on attack rolls and damage rolls by 1.
    +1 s are much rarer in 5e, and magic items max out at +3 I think. You can't just keep the numbers that worked in the 3.5 SRD.

    Control Light
    This is the kind of thing that might be a cantrip in 5e, i think, with the starting area much smaller, and then incresing as the character levels


    Crystal Shard
    Metacreativity (Creation) Casting Time: 1 action Range: 60 feet
    Display: Auditory, Sensory Duration: Instantaneous Power Points: 1
    Upon casting this power, you propel a razor-sharp crystal shard at your target. You must succeed on a ranged attack with the ray to deal damage to a target. The ray deals 1d6 points of piercing damage. Augment: For every additional power point you spend, this powerís damage increases by 1d6 points.
    Really lame for a 1st level damage spell in 5e. I'd revise this as a cantrip, with damage that automatically scales like any other cantrip.

    Far Hand
    ...
    You can mentally lift and move an object of 15 pounds at Wisdom from a distance.
    typo


    Force Screen
    ... The force screen provides a +4 bonus to Armor Class (which applies against incorporeal touch attacks, since the force screen is a force effect). Since it hovers in front of your hands are free to cast additional powers or wield weapons.
    Augment: For every 4 additional power points you spend, the shield bonus to Armor Class improves by 1.
    You just can't get a +4 flat bonus to AC in 5e at any level.

    Same goes for "Intertial Armor", as written these could stack.

    Missive
    ...
    Range: 60 feet
    ...
    You send a telepathic message of up to ten words to any living creature within range. Missive is strictly a one-way exchange from you to the subject. If you do not share a common language, the subject ďhearsĒ meaningless mental syllables.
    Augment: For every 2 additional power points you spend, this powerís range increases by 10 feet and your word limit increases by 5.
    Starts out strictly inferior to the "message" cantrip, and would take 12 additional powerpoints to beat it. Recomendation: Scrap.

    My Light
    Why wouldn't you just use the light cantrip?

    Ego Whip
    ...
    Your rapid mental lashings assault the ego of your enemy, debilitating its confidence. The target takes 1d4 points of Charisma damage,
    Is Attribute damage a thing in 5e?

    Energy Adaptation, Specified
    the 5e spell equivalent is a 3rd level spell and requires concentration.

    Eveys of the Basilisk
    Eyes?
    Last edited by eleazzaar; 2015-06-16 at 09:06 AM.

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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    @Steampunkette - Thank you for pointing out I poorly worded how much can be spent on a single power. A Psion is only supposed to be able to spend a number of points on each power equal to their level. So a level 10 Psion could only spend 10points. They could manifest a 1st level power with 9 augments or a higher power they know with less augmentation.

    As for the subclasses, you are right. I will need to look into added abilities for each specialty.

    @Ziegander: Most of it is retyped from 3.5, yes. I tried to edit as I went. If you have exact examples of powers who's effects no longer exist or that are breaking rules that would be helpful.

    @eleazzaar: Typos galore! See I needed an editor, because MS Word certainly didn't go a very good job.

    Regarding the increase in Save DC. It doesn't look like any other class gets an increase in DC. I personally like the feel of a tiny dc increase over the caster by passing resistance (like Wizards get), but I can see where it may be viewed as overpowered. Perhaps the below would be more tolerable:
    Your choice grants you +1 to power attack and/or damage.
    Ex. A Kineticist manifesting a damaging Psychokinesis power could add +1 to the damage of the power or +1 to their attack with the power, their choice when manifesting the ability.

    I've removed the feat text from ability score increases. I put it there because we're using the rule and the players keep forgetting and complaining they don't want to increase a secondary stat.

    Removing Mind-effecting from spell descriptions. I'm sure I missed a few more that have gone by the way side due to the 3.5 brain clouding.

    As to the duration of spells you are right the 1x/x setup is gone.. I'm going to need to investigate other spells that have changed from scaling durations. Though I may leave them for now to add a bit of unusual to the class and see how it goes.

    And spell saves come up again. Since I'm not giving them a way to over come resistance like wizards, I may just increase the number of augments needed to get that increase. So by 20th level they are only getting maybe a +2.

    In regards to Bolt. In a low magic setting you are right and that spell should be denied or removed. I do however want to increase the augment points needed to increase the attack/damage bonus.

    The problem I see with making it a cantrip is all the 1st level spells are "lacking" to begin with to make up for being augment-able. If I moved Crystal Shards, I would need to move all the others. Perhaps increasing the damage on 1st level spells to 2d would be a more prudent move?

    Force Screen was supposed to say Shield bonus, and Inertial armor says it doesn't stack with Medium and Heavy Armor. They would stack, just like a shield and normal armor stacks. However the bonuses should be lower. (And I thought I had made the changes to the published Google doc, but it isn't reflected so... my bad)

    Scraping Missive and My Light. These are remnants from way back before I started gathering cantrips.

    re: Ability Score Damage - It is listed as something Greater Restoration cures. However perhaps replacing ability damage with the poison effect would be more in line with other spells.

    re: Energy Adaption - Since it is personal only, I'm alright with it being lower level. However the duration should be lower, and the augmentation cost should be higher. Though I can see the argument for changing it to match Protection from Elements (including level).

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    Perhaps the below would be more tolerable:
    Your choice grants you +1 to power attack and/or damage.
    Ex. A Kineticist manifesting a damaging Psychokinesis power could add +1 to the damage of the power or +1 to their attack with the power, their choice when manifesting the ability.
    Personally, I quite like the fact that 5e doesn't give you situation +1s to remember.

    What if you got 1 bonus power point when augmenting powers of your school?

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    As to the duration of spells you are right the 1x/x setup is gone.. I'm going to need to investigate other spells that have changed from scaling durations. Though I may leave them for now to add a bit of unusual to the class and see how it goes.
    Stuff like that, I won't say it's "wrong", it's just not 5e style. Just something to be aware of and not accidentally include.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    The problem I see with making it a cantrip is all the 1st level spells are "lacking" to begin with to make up for being augment-able. If I moved Crystal Shards, I would need to move all the others. Perhaps increasing the damage on 1st level spells to 2d would be a more prudent move?
    I don't think you need to make the un-augmented version of the spell "lacking"-- after all plenty of 5e spells can be "augmented" by casting it with a higher spell slot. I do think the unaugmented power should be roughly comparable in power to a spell of the same level.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    Force Screen was supposed to say Shield bonus,
    That's better, but even the term "shield bonus" is a 3.5 term-- though it is understandable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    re: Ability Score Damage - It is listed as something Greater Restoration cures. However perhaps replacing ability damage with the poison effect would be more in line with other spells.
    My 5e experience is mostly at levels 5 and below, so that's just something i've never encountered.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    re: Energy Adaption - Since it is personal only, I'm alright with it being lower level. However the duration should be lower, and the augmentation cost should be higher. Though I can see the argument for changing it to match Protection from Elements (including level).
    I certainly wouldn't say everything needs to be at the same level as the 5e spell equivalent -- if it is all the same what's the point?

    But the spell version requireing a higher level AND concentration means the psionic version is significantly superior-- even when you don't have the levels to match the hour duration.

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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    So far I feel like characters are far less powerful, and it's starting to feel less heroic.


    What if you got 1 bonus power point when augmenting powers of your school?
    I think extra points for specific power schools would be confusing, and having only one seems like a waste.


    I don't think you need to make the un-augmented version of the spell "lacking"-- after all plenty of 5e spells can be "augmented" by casting it with a higher spell slot. I do think the unaugmented power should be roughly comparable in power to a spell of the same level.
    However for every "augment" a wizard gets the Psion could have two or more. So a first level wizard spell cast at third level would be say 5d6 (base 3d, +1d/spell level). The Psion's augmented power would be 5d6 (base 1d, +4d with an extra 4pp). Since their augments are level based not power level based they would have 4 points to pump into the power.


    But the spell version requireing a higher level AND concentration means the psionic version is significantly superior-- even when you don't have the levels to match the hour duration.
    I'm going to try it with a 1 minute duration and see how it fairs. I personally hate concentration spells, so I'm trying to create as few of them as possible. If it means lowering powers to just a few round for a duration I'd rather do that.

    Thank you so much for the helpful feedback.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    Ok so I'm new here, but I need some outside opinions on a project I've been working on.

    My normal 3.5 group has adopted a bunch of newbies who are insisting on playing 5th and only 5th. This isn't completely bad, I mean 5th so far is nice. The main problem is the lack of options compared to 3.5. We have 10 people in our group, and most don't like doubling up on classes so we're hitting a wall.

    To combat this wall I've started trying to rework Psion so it may work with 5th. I used the power points per level chart from the back of the DMG, with a few modifications. The main problem I'm having is balancing spell damage. I tended towards the lower side since augmenting was an integral part of the 3.5 Psion and I wanted to keep that aspect.

    Anyway.... below is what I've come up with. It is the main class description, power list, and power descriptions so it is a bit lengthy. I would love helpful feedback, I really would like to give my group at least one more option.

    The class is built without the 1 spell per level over 6 restriction, because that is currently how we run if someone uses spell points. It could easily follow the DMG rules though.

    Psion (google docs file)
    Cool. However, looks like the Original class(from 3.5) and the features don't say clearly when you gain specific features.
    Quote Originally Posted by RodrigoAlves
    Once a player almost fell into a trap full of spikes. He asked me "how much damage would a spike do?"
    I said "Instant death"
    Then, he grabbed a spike and used it as a weapon for the rest of the adventure.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    However for every "augment" a wizard gets the Psion could have two or more. So a first level wizard spell cast at third level would be say 5d6 (base 3d, +1d/spell level). The Psion's augmented power would be 5d6 (base 1d, +4d with an extra 4pp). Since their augments are level based not power level based they would have 4 points to pump into the power.

    Why can't they have the same base power, and then each additional 1d6 costs 2PP?

    Because even with a lower base at only 1 PP per d6 the psion will soon outstrip the wizard in the power that can be added to the spell. With your numbers a 11th level character can cast as a wizard 8d6 (base 3d +1d/spell level), while the psion can augment it to 11d6 (base 1d + 10d6 with 10 extra PP) To take it further, at 20th level, (assuming there's no cap on the spell) a wizard casting the spell in a 9th level slot 11d6 (what the Psion had 9 levels ago!), while the Psion could augment it to 20d6, using 20PP.

    At a cost of +2PP per higher level emulated everything works out. The standard cost of a higher level power is +2 PP per level anyway -- a 3rd level power costs 5 PP, a 9th level power costs 17 PP, etc.
    Last edited by eleazzaar; 2015-06-17 at 09:00 AM.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    @Ziegander: Most of it is retyped from 3.5, yes. I tried to edit as I went. If you have exact examples of powers who's effects no longer exist or that are breaking rules that would be helpful.
    Well, there are plenty. Eleazzaar gave you a handful of examples, but he missed some. I really don't feel like reading through the entire list to point out everytime you reference a 3e rule or your copy/paste'd powers do things that 5e doesn't do anymore. If you can't do it yourself, or worse, you don't even know the 5e rules well enough to tell, then... I'm not sure why we're all here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daelyna View Post
    So far I feel like characters are far less powerful, and it's starting to feel less heroic.
    Are you feeling like 5e characters are less heroic than 3e ones?

    I'm going to try it with a 1 minute duration and see how it fairs. I personally hate concentration spells, so I'm trying to create as few of them as possible. If it means lowering powers to just a few round for a duration I'd rather do that.
    I fear you're missing the point of the Concentration mechanic, but also perhaps a way to work in psionic focus.

    Quote Originally Posted by eleazzaar View Post
    Why can't they have the same base power, and then each additional 1d6 costs 2PP?

    Because even with a lower base at only 1 PP per d6 the psion will soon outstrip the wizard in the power that can be added to the spell. With your numbers a 11th level character can cast as a wizard 8d6 (base 3d +1d/spell level), while the psion can augment it to 11d6 (base 1d + 10d6 with 10 extra PP) To take it further, at 20th level, (assuming there's no cap on the spell) a wizard casting the spell in a 9th level slot 11d6 (what the Psion had 9 levels ago!), while the Psion could augment it to 20d6, using 20PP.
    Is that actually a bad thing, though? Honestly, blasting out of higher level spell slots is really bad. It's something you would only do if you had no other choice, and I've literally never seen or heard of it coming up except at the lowest levels of play. And 20d6 damage, out of an effectively 10.5th level spell slot, still doesn't even come close to the devastation doled out by Meteor Swarm and is no better than a Scorching Ray from a 9th level slot.

    Though I do agree that unaugmented 1st level powers need to be doing way more than 1d6 damage to a single target. That's less than many cantrips, and even the cantrips that deal that kind of damage have additional effects.
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziegander View Post
    Is that actually a bad thing, though? Honestly, blasting out of higher level spell slots is really bad. It's something you would only do if you had no other choice...
    Well the Psion gets a limited number of powers known. If the damage kept pace, it would be a smart thing to do to know a few lower level powers and augment them up when they need a bigger boom.

    But really the damage should probably keep pace with higher level spells-- not lower level spells cast at a higher level.

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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziegander View Post
    Well, there are plenty. Eleazzaar gave you a handful of examples, but he missed some. I really don't feel like reading through the entire list to point out every time you reference a 3e rule or your copy/paste'd powers do things that 5e doesn't do anymore. If you can't do it yourself, or worse, you don't even know the 5e rules well enough to tell, then... I'm not sure why we're all here.
    Eleazzaar did point out a few, and I'm grateful. 5e hasn't become second nature hence wanting extra eyes. If I could look at what I wrote and say "now that isn't right" I could have skipped putting myself out on a forum to ask for help. However 3.5 is just second nature for me, so I know I'm not catching all the differences when I read through what I have written.

    5e character feel way less heroic. I'm sure people will disagree, but so far my experience is feeling lack luster.

    As to concentration. Oh no I get it I just dislike it, and if I can work around it I will.

    @Eleazzaar - Maybe slightly bumping the damage on the lower spells (along with adjusting costs) and adjusting the higher level spells so casting them is more cost effective would work. If I just made augmenting cost 2 points, Psion would just be a new flavor of wizard that is using spell points. Which that isn't bad, but I'm hoping make it more than just oddly named spells.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Concentration could be a way that Psions are vastly different from other spellcasting-role classes...

    Consider making their buffs and debuffs short set-duration effects that do not require concentration, but can be applied more liberally in a layering turn by turn manner.

    It would make Psionicists the most powerful buffers in the game, but require them to spend the majority of their turns applying or maintaining buff effects.

    And when Psionic Warriors come around, we could shift their buffs into bonus actions to be applied between (or before) attacks with a moderately powerful immediate effect on a given attack and a smaller residual buff that lasts for several rounds. Creating a "Mounting" combat effect...

    Round 1, Attack, Bonus action 'smite' on extra attack. Round 2, Attack has a small buff from last round's Smite, Bonus action 'smite' on extra attack. Round 3, Attack has 2 small buffs from previous rounds. Bonus action 'smite' on extra attack. Round 4, Attack has 3 small buffs from previous rounds. Bonus action 'smite' on extra attack. First round's smite small buff ends. Round 5's attack has 3 small buffs from previous rounds...

    Continue add infinitum. Less up-front power than a smite, but with residual increase in damage dealing. Could be a really interesting way to play that stands up to the other melee classes in a new combat style. Create some powers that end a previous round's effect for a burst benefit that is determined by how many rounds of remaining buff there are to force a tactical choice to expend the focus or not...

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    I've been wracking my brain trying to figure out a way to avoid needing concentration for power duration. I think I may have found a compromise I can personally live with.

    Psionic Focus
    Starting at 3rd level your mind has been battled tested and is now capable of more readily keeping its focus while in combat. You gain special focus dice that can be used to augment your concentration checks. These dice are regained when you finish a long rest.
    At 3rd level you have 4d6ís that you can use to gain an advantage on a concentration check. When you roll a concentration check you can choose to add the result of one of your focus die to your roll. You may choose to add the die after seeing the result of your d20. You may only add one focus die per concentration check.
    At 7th level you have 7d6 worth of focus die. In addition you may also have two concentration powers active at once. These powers must serve different purposes. You can have one buff power (Like Inertial Armor) and one attack power (like Energy Wall), but not two powers that deal damage or grant a buff.
    At 11th level you gain the ability to get back a spent focus die whenever you successfully make a concentration check.

    Since Psion's are all about mental focus it should be hard to make them drop a power.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Steampunkette View Post
    Creating a "Mounting" combat effect...
    While I like that idea a lot. It would be a lot to keep track of.

    I could see trying to make an entire class that is dedicated to Effect over Times (EoT's), but to tack it on may be a bit much.

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    Default Re: Homebrewed Psion: Second or third set of eyes needed

    I've updated the file to reflect all the changes that have been made.

    I broke down and borrowed some ideas from the wizard schools, because a few were just to perfect for Psion.

    I added in a few powers with concentration, not a lot since I'd still like to avoid them. I also changed a few that might normally have needed to be concentration to 5 rounds so I can test the viability of short duration vs concentration.

    I think I fixed a lot of the typo's. Although there is a weird one attached to the duration of powers that no matter how many times I fix it the thing keeps coming back. I hope i removed all reference to standard action (I thought I'd done that prior to the original post, but seems that one was being stubborn also).

    Unless anyone catches something that is beyond game changing (Like I gave Psion's 3 meteorstorm like spells) I'm going to let my players have this version and see how it goes.

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