Multiclass Mondays #14 – Psionic Power

Multiclass Mondays #14 – Psionic Power

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Welcome back to  the final Multiclass Mondays! It’s been a long journey and I’m glad to see it finally complete. As much as I like writing long, continuing series-style posts, it’s easy to run out of steam on them after 10 or more installments. (Note to self: no more than 4 installments in a series from now on. Seriously.) Quinn, David, Gerald and I have also been hard at work on the Worldbreakers publishing, which hopefully you’ve gotten to see (and purchase!) by now.

For our final entry, we tackle the long-awaited Psionic classes – the Ardent, Battlemind and Psion.  The main issue with Psionic themes is the At-Will nature of the powers and the use of power points. Most classes, of course, do not follow this structure making mixing the two styles tricky at best. We have at least one precedent towards applying a Psionic Theme to a non-Psionic class in the Noble Adept. However, since the Noble Adept gives you neither Psionic Augmentation nor power points, more than half the Theme is useless for non-Psionic classes. This is not acceptable for theme multiclassing. In order to remedy this issue, we define a class feature that will be provided to each of the three Themes:

Undisciplined Psyche

You gain the Psionic Augmentation class feature. For each Theme at-will attack power you choose, you gain 2 power points if your primary class does not already grant you power points.

That being said, we can now define the Themes using the Noble Adept as a template.

Ardent

Contagious Exuberance

You can use the Ardent Surge power once per encounter.

Pretty standard for a leader. Not much else to say here.

Theme at Level 1

Empath (Multiclass Ardent)

Prerequisite: Ardent

Theme Feature: Choose an Ardent Mantle. You count as having that Mantle for the purpose of your Ardent Surge. You may use the associated feature power once per day. In addition, you gain the Undisciplined Psyche class feature.

Psionic classes don’t have a lot of class features, so these Themes necessarily run dangerously close to being Hybrids all by themselves. Such is the nature of the beast. Giving a daily use of the feature power instead of the constant benefit that the hybrid gets is the best compromise I can come up with.

Theme at Levels 2+

  • Lv 2: Healing Bond
  • Lv 3: Withered Technique*
  • Lv 5: Invitation To Defeat
  • Lv 6: Escalating Fury
  • Lv 7: Rewarding Strike *^
  • Lv 9: Feast of Despair
  • Lv 10: From the Brink

*If your primary class does not grant Power Points, you must use either the Augment 1 or Augment 2 options
^If your primary class grants Power Points, this power replaces an Augmentable At-Will you already know

We’re looking for two things in each of the powers for this Theme. First, since we’re forcing non-Psionic primary classes to always use an Augmented form, the Augmented forms need to be both related and generally useful. (Some Augment 1 options are VERY situational) Second, the flavor of the Theme (as well as the others to follow) is uncontrolled psionic ability. Therefore, powers that feel like they would need discipline and practice (teleportation, zones, etc) don’t really fit. Feast of Despair lets you regain power points and should be considered strongly.

 

Battlemind

Soulknife

Choose a Psionic Study. You count as having that feature and can use the associate Feature power once per day.

Battlemind feature powers are universally recognized as awesome. Even one as a daily power is worth a feat. Also, have to work in some of those older iconic names in somewhere, right? WotC sure did with the old psionic defense modes…

Theme at Level 1

Psychic Warrior  (Multiclass Battlemind)

Prerequisite: Battlemind

Theme Feature: You gain the Psychic Defense class feature, except that Mind Spike and Blurred Step are encounter powers for you. In addition, you gain the Undisciplined Psyche class feature.

Battlemind is weird, because you really need the full suite of Battlemind’s Demand, Blurred Step and Mind Spike for it to work well.  Being able to mark at-will is still useful, if not completely optimal. At the end of the day, this feat/theme combination gives you nearly the whole complement of Battlemind features, just with limited useage.

Theme at Levels 2+

  • Lv 2: Telepathic Challenge
  • Lv 3: Lodestone Lure*
  • Lv 5: Empathic Feedback
  • Lv 6: Psionic Ambush
  • Lv 7: Lightning Rush*^
  • Lv 9: Aspect of Disembodiment
  • Lv 10: Hands of the Titan

*If your primary class does not grant Power Points, you must use either the Augment 1 or Augment 2 options
^If your primary class grants Power Points, this power replaces an Augmentable At-Will you already know

Once again, Defender themes need to rely on Defending, particularly since the Battlemind’s punishment requires some forethought. This situation t overrides the previous statement about ‘uncontrolled’ Theme flavor. You still get a little of it with powers like Empathic Feedback and Hands of the Titan, though. Lightning Rush is nearly required for the Theme and will improve your defending ability by leaps and bounds (pardon the pun).

 

Psion

Mind Over Matter

Choose one 1st level at-will psion power. You gain it as an encounter power and may augment it once you gain power points.

Very close to the base feat, but with no skill training (of course) and the ability to augment.

Theme at Level 1

Partially Awakened (Multiclass Psion)

Prerequisite: Psion

Theme Feature: Choose a Discipline Focus. You count as having that Focus. You may use the associated feature powers each once per day. In addition, you gain the Undisciplined Psyche class feature and may use psion implements with psion and psion paragon path powers.

This was a hard call. In my opinion, you could give any class the Focus feature powers as is and it wouldn’t really break anything. However, the Hybrid only lets you pick one of the two powers per focus, so I want to keep the multiclass less than that in potency. It’s probably an underpowered feature, but I’m willing to take that chance.

Theme at Levels 2+

  • Lv 2: Intellect Fortress
  • Lv 3: Fuse Form*
  • Lv 5: Hypnotic Pulse
  • Lv 6: Telekinetic Screen
  • Lv 7: Ego Whip *^
  • Lv 9: Mind Blast
  • Lv 10: Intellect Leech

*If your primary class does not grant Power Points, you must use either the Augment 1 or Augment 2 options
^If your primary class grants Power Points, this power replaces an Augmentable At-Will you already know

There are three very distinct flavors of Psion, so making any one of them strong in the Theme is difficult from both a flavor and mechanical perspective. Instead, I tried to pick powers that could be interpreted very broadly.

That’s it! Theme multiclassing is now complete. Since the start of this series, we’ve seen several attempts at multiclassing/hybridizing Essentials classes, with varying levels of success. In addition, the discussion from WotC that sparked this idea seems to have disappeared from the radar since none of the GenCon panels (to the best of my knowledge anyway), talked about it.  Maybe they’re keeping it a secret – I don’t know, but I’d REALLY like to.

Until next time, folks.

 

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Ryven Cedrylle was introduced to 2nd edition D&D by his father at age 8 and has been hooked ever since. When not out somewhere with his nerd-loving wife, he spends an inordinate amount of time staring at small objects - primarily beakers, stars, books about religion and virtual gaming miniatures. Follow him on Twitter for previews of upcoming material and random nuggets of wit! There's also a guy Ryven knows who's trying to adopt a baby. Take a look at the site, see if you can help him out.