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View Full Version : [DnD 3.5] Psicrystals and Hit Die



theonesin
2011-02-04, 01:41 PM
Do Psicrystals truly advance in hit die, and if so, what benefits do they gain?

Psyren
2011-02-04, 01:42 PM
Feats, skill points and BAB, like everyone else

theonesin
2011-02-04, 01:50 PM
Ok feats I understand, but how does increasing their BAB and skills work? Their stat blocks has a "-" where Attack would be. And for skills, the Psion entry says they get the same skill ranks as their master. Am I supposed to get more skills on top of that?

Psyren
2011-02-04, 01:54 PM
Like this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/typesSubtypes.htm#constructType)

The "-" is because they have no attack forms normally.

Essence_of_War
2011-02-04, 02:00 PM
It is a construct so you can find out how to advance its BAB, saves, :

http://www.d20srd.org/srd/typesSubtypes.htm#constructType

Except for when it is overridden here:

Psicrystal Basics

Use the statistics for a psicrystal, but make the following changes.
Saving Throws

A psicrystal uses its ownerís base saving throw bonuses and ability modifiers on saves, though it doesnít enjoy any other bonuses its owner might have (from magic items or feats, for example).
Abilities

When its self-propulsion ability is not activated, a psicrystal has no Strength score and no Dexterity score.
Skills

A psicrystal has the same skill ranks as its owner, except that it has a minimum of 4 ranks each in Spot, Listen, Move Silently, and Search. (Even if its owner has no ranks in these skills, a psicrystal has 4 ranks in each.) A psicrystal uses its own ability modifiers on skill checks.

It certainly gets feats, its HD increase although its HP only grow with the master, and it uses its masters base saves with its masters stat modifiers ,it doesn't appear to gain skill points except as its master (although it uses its own ability modifiers), and its BAB increases although it normally has no attack modes.

Feel free to use it as a source of feats for "Feat Leech" :smallbiggrin:

Edit: Lurk/Psychic Rogue'd by PsyRen :smallbiggrin:

Psyren
2011-02-04, 02:03 PM
Yeah, I'm actually not too sure about the skill points part, so EoW might be correct there.

But feats and BAB, definitely (BAB matters if, for instance, you give it a ray attack, e.g. through Hidden Talent (Energy Ray)).

Essence_of_War
2011-02-04, 02:12 PM
Psyren,

I read the text in the psion class description as a "specific overrides general" where the general is "advancing a constructs HD gives the usual benefits..."

I might be wrong if there was errata or some other ruling that I missed.

theonesin
2011-02-04, 02:23 PM
What's Feat Leech?

EvilJoe15
2011-02-04, 02:29 PM
This. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/psionic/powers/featLeech.htm)

I like to use it for what I call the battery(Bah! Ta! Ray!), and Schrodinger's Psion.

theonesin
2011-02-04, 02:32 PM
Well, what would be good Psicrystal feats for a Shaper?

EvilJoe15
2011-02-04, 02:44 PM
Hidden Talent, Psionic Talent, Overchannel, Expanded Knowledge, Leadership.

In that order. If it was a Telepath I'd take leadership before overchannel and expanded knowledge.

Essence_of_War
2011-02-04, 02:45 PM
A great starting point would be "Hidden Talent". It grants your psicrystal a 2pp reserve, and gives it access to 1 1st level power. Pick your favorite!

Psyren
2011-02-04, 02:51 PM
I wrote up a list of useful feats here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=9925072&postcount=56)

faceroll
2011-02-04, 07:18 PM
I wrote up a list of useful feats here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=9925072&postcount=56)

I am a big fan of your work.

theonesin
2011-02-04, 07:44 PM
So, do Psicrystals get their own skill points on top of the ranks of their master, or not?

Psyren
2011-02-04, 07:47 PM
I decided to give my Psicrystal Hidden Talent(Astral Construct). How do I determine BAB progression?

I wouldn't go with that one; your Psicrystal doesn't have an ML and therefore can't augment it, plus it has a long manifesting time. Go with something that's good even without augmentation and stays good as you level - like Control Light or Mindlink. (Either of these is excellent for the party scout; put your psicrystal in their pocket, and now you have a totally silent long-range radio. Or, it can turn out the lights to help your rogue get around.) Control Object has a dozen uses, Grease can really mess up someone's day, and Matter Agitation gives it a potent attack with some utility applications.


I am a big fan of your work.

...:smallredface:

theonesin
2011-02-04, 08:31 PM
I guess I don't really need it to have Astral Construct, since my Psion has that(as well as Grease, Entangling Ectoplasm, Ecto Protection, and Minor Creation).

I'm still wondering about that skill issue though.

Draz74
2011-02-04, 08:45 PM
A great starting point would be "Hidden Talent". It grants your psicrystal a 2pp reserve, and gives it access to 1 1st level power. Pick your favorite!

It can't use the power it gains this way unless you get its Charisma up to 11 somehow. (Tome of Leadership and Influence hardly seems worth it.)

EvilJoe15
2011-02-04, 09:02 PM
Simple, increase it's Cha at 4 HD. Not that hard.

theonesin
2011-02-06, 01:31 AM
Sorry to revive this thread, but the party just hit level 3, so I was picking my feats. I gave my Psicrystal the Psionic Talent feat.

I was looking at the feats mentioned, specifically Expanded Knowledge. That feat requires you to be a Manifester level 3rd. How exactly can my Psicrystal qualify for that? I took Hidden Talent, but I don't know how that works.

Kuma Kode
2011-02-06, 04:43 AM
There's debate on whether or not they do, by RAW, and whether or not they are supposed to by RAI.

Familiars, for instance, do not, and it's not a stretch of the imagination that psicrystals were meant to function much like that, not as a secondary psion with feat abuse.

Actually, from a strict reading of the rules, I'm not sure psicrystals are supposed to be advanced like constructs.

The rules say to use the stats as presented on such and such page, and to make the following changes. None of these changes include "add skill points, feats, ability score increases, save increases, and base attack bonus increases as appropriate for its masters Hit Die." It just tells you to use such and such master's stat for this, give it hit die as its master and hit points as half, etc.

Also note that on the psicrystal information page, feats is not stated as being variable, unlike hit die, hit points, saves, special abilities, or alignment.

ScionoftheVoid
2011-02-06, 06:50 AM
Sorry to revive this thread, but the party just hit level 3, so I was picking my feats. I gave my Psicrystal the Psionic Talent feat.

I was looking at the feats mentioned, specifically Expanded Knowledge. That feat requires you to be a Manifester level 3rd. How exactly can my Psicrystal qualify for that? I took Hidden Talent, but I don't know how that works.

You could try the Practiced Manifester feat (IIRC, doesn't require an existing manifester level, adds four to your manifester level (maximum of your HD). Complete Psionic(s?), though I'm sure it can be located legally on the internet (try the excerpts on the Wizards of the Coast site).

The Glyphstone
2011-02-06, 07:11 AM
There's debate on whether or not they do, by RAW, and whether or not they are supposed to by RAI.

Familiars, for instance, do not, and it's not a stretch of the imagination that psicrystals were meant to function much like that, not as a secondary psion with feat abuse.

Actually, from a strict reading of the rules, I'm not sure psicrystals are supposed to be advanced like constructs.

The rules say to use the stats as presented on such and such page, and to make the following changes. None of these changes include "add skill points, feats, ability score increases, save increases, and base attack bonus increases as appropriate for its masters Hit Die." It just tells you to use such and such master's stat for this, give it hit die as its master and hit points as half, etc.

Also note that on the psicrystal information page, feats is not stated as being variable, unlike hit die, hit points, saves, special abilities, or alignment.

It's a fair argument, but the primary point against it is that psicrystals are specifically called out as having Hit Dice equal to their master's level, in very different wording to the familiar having no change in Hit Dice, only in HP. The fact that they didn't copy-paste the familiar text is a strong point in favor of RAW that psicrystals get feats, and a strong point towards RAI that the designers just really dropped the ball regarding said crystals (note also that they forgot to explain how you get a new one, even in the FAQ).

dextercorvia
2011-02-06, 09:15 AM
Sorry to revive this thread, but the party just hit level 3, so I was picking my feats. I gave my Psicrystal the Psionic Talent feat.

I was looking at the feats mentioned, specifically Expanded Knowledge. That feat requires you to be a Manifester level 3rd. How exactly can my Psicrystal qualify for that? I took Hidden Talent, but I don't know how that works.

AFAIK, a Psicrystal can't take Expanded Knowledge.


You could try the Practiced Manifester feat (IIRC, doesn't require an existing manifester level, adds four to your manifester level (maximum of your HD). Complete Psionic(s?), though I'm sure it can be located legally on the internet (try the excerpts on the Wizards of the Coast site).

Practiced Manifester includes the wording (similar to Prac. Spellcaster) choose a manifesting class to which you belong. Psicrystals (even with Hidden Talent) can't takebenefit from that feat.

ScionoftheVoid
2011-02-06, 09:30 AM
Practiced Manifester includes the wording (similar to Prac. Spellcaster) choose a manifesting class to which you belong. Psicrystals (even with Hidden Talent) can't takebenefit from that feat.

Ah, okay. Hadn't looked at it for a while. Nevermind, then.

Psyren
2011-02-06, 10:24 AM
In Pathfinder, Psicrystals no longer get feats (the "HD" line is removed) but they do clarify that losing your psicrystal causes you to get a new one in 24 hours.


AFAIK, a Psicrystal can't take Expanded Knowledge.

They can actually, just not until Epic.

EvilJoe15
2011-02-06, 11:57 AM
That's what Overchannel is for. It get's your psicrystal's ML up to 3 at level 8, so at level 9 it can take expanded knowledge. Now it'd only have acces to the feat, and the power it provides when it overchannels. You can still leech it to be Schrodinger's Psion.

theonesin
2011-02-06, 12:24 PM
It really doesn't say what happens when you lose your Psicrystal/how to get one back?

Also, I know that certain abilities of the Psicrystal don't increase if you take levels in something non-Psion, but does it still increase in Hit Die? I ask because my character plans to go into the Constructor PrC at level 7.

EvilJoe15
2011-02-06, 12:28 PM
No, no it doesn't. So make sure you don't have to find out.

I believe so, since it says:

A psicrystalís characteristics depend on its master. Its Hit Dice are equal to its masterís Hit Dice (counting only levels in psion or wilder), its hit points are equal to half its masterís, and its saving throw bonuses are the same as its masterís.

No mention of master's class level, just HD.

theonesin
2011-02-06, 12:49 PM
Ok, good.

And yeah, I almost did find out when a monster grabbed my Psicrystal while it was scouting. Fortunately, the monster could not physically do enough damage to overcome the Psicrystal's Hardness.

And now I know to have my Psicrystal do Move Silently/Hide checks.

The Glyphstone
2011-02-06, 12:49 PM
No, no it doesn't. So make sure you don't have to find out.

I believe so, since it says:


No mention of master's class level, just HD.

Umm........



Its Hit Dice are equal to its masterís Hit Dice (counting only levels in psion or wilder),

Urpriest
2011-02-06, 12:57 PM
By the way, since there's currently a gathering of the psicrystal intelligentsia here, a question that's been bugging me: I've heard references to tricks that allow someone to gain more than one psicrystal. Do these just involve having psicrystals high enough level to get their own psicrystals/cohorts, or is there actually a way for the character to get more than one psicrystal tied to himself?

theonesin
2011-02-06, 01:03 PM
Yeah, I went back and read that part too. Psicrystals only increase in Hit Die if you advance as a Psion/Wilder.

"its hit points are equal to half its masterís, and its saving throw bonuses are the same as its masterís" suggests that these two items are NOT based on the master's class though.

Psyren
2011-02-06, 01:15 PM
The "only psion or wilder" is legacy wording from 3.0 and easily dismissed. If you take it as RAW, Psywars, Ardents etc. can't have psicrystals at all, since theirs will always have 0 HD. Evidence shows this is not intended (for example, Ardents can learn Solicit Psicrystal.)

And if your DM is adamant, well, just play Pathfinder where the wording was fixed. :smalltongue:


By the way, since there's currently a gathering of the psicrystal intelligentsia here, a question that's been bugging me: I've heard references to tricks that allow someone to gain more than one psicrystal. Do these just involve having psicrystals high enough level to get their own psicrystals/cohorts, or is there actually a way for the character to get more than one psicrystal tied to himself?

Psicrystals can take Psicrystal Affinity either dubiously via Hidden Talent (grants ML 1 so long as they don't take any class levels) or post-epic. The latter is more sound rules-wise so that's what I use, particularly for discussions such as your Psionic Tippyverse thread.

dextercorvia
2011-02-06, 04:15 PM
That's what Overchannel is for. It get's your psicrystal's ML up to 3 at level 8, so at level 9 it can take expanded knowledge. Now it'd only have acces to the feat, and the power it provides when it overchannels. You can still leech it to be Schrodinger's Psion.


Overchannel [Psionic]

You burn your life force to strengthen your powers.
Benefit

While manifesting a power, you can increase your effective manifester level by one, but in so doing you take 1d8 points of damage. At 8th level, you can choose to increase your effective manifester level by two, but you take 3d8 points of damage. At 15th level, you can increase your effective manifester level by three, but you take 5d8 points of damage.

The effective increase in manifester level increases the number of power points you can expend on a single power manifestation, as well as increasing all manifester level-dependent effects, such as range, duration, and overcoming power resistance.


Expanded Knowledge [Psionic]

You learn another power.
Prerequisites: Manifester level 3rd.
Benefit: Add to your powers known one additional power of any level up to one level lower than the highest-level power you can manifest. You can choose any power, including powers from another disciplineís list or even from another classís list.


(This is not a manifester level, and it does not add to any manifester levels gained by taking psionic classes.)

Emphasis mine.

It was a nice try, but I'm afraid Overchannel doesn't cut it either. Even if Overchannel offered your Psicrystal a fake ML of 4 sometimes, and it used that to qualify for Expanded Knowledge, your Psicrystal could only take a 0-level power with EK.

Urpriest
2011-02-06, 07:36 PM
Psicrystals can take Psicrystal Affinity either dubiously via Hidden Talent (grants ML 1 so long as they don't take any class levels) or post-epic. The latter is more sound rules-wise so that's what I use, particularly for discussions such as your Psionic Tippyverse thread.

Ah ok. So your Psicrystals increase linearly, rather than exponentially, since each can only have one, and if one dies you lose access to everything lower in the chain. Ouch. At least they can increase without limit though.