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View Full Version : Magic psionic transperency<compromise>



Keledrath
2007-08-22, 08:16 AM
Okay, I've been having this dispute lately. Magic and psionics: Two different things, and no easy compromise. Some people (non-DnD players) say only "True" psionics are exempt from transarency. "True" psionics encompass telepathy, pyrokinesis, and telekinesis. I support a 50-50 compromise: psionics are weakened by anti-magic, and magic is weakened by anti-psionics. Which is the better compromise?

its_all_ogre
2007-08-22, 08:17 AM
best compromise is to use the magic-psionics transparency rules as published.
far less work and it is most balanced too.

Sir Jason
2007-08-22, 08:18 AM
It all depends (if you look at this from a rule/balance point of view) on how much psionics your DM is willing to compensate for. Its all in the EPH; there's Psi-Mag transparency, partial transparency, and they're completely different. I personally like playing with psionics is different, but if your DM has little to no understanding of psionics things can get a bit messy... that's my favorite though.

Keledrath
2007-08-22, 08:20 AM
Not a DM, just a debate with some other forumites. And it's basicly between these two.

Sir Jason
2007-08-22, 08:31 AM
Well, in that case, my vote is cast with 'They are Different'. Magic uses manipulation of arcane might, or divine intervention, while psionics draw their power from the manifesters mind. That's different if you ask me.

Ulzgoroth
2007-08-22, 08:49 AM
How do you tell the difference between coming 'from the psion's mind' and 'coming from the sorcerer's talent'? Other than by the mechanical variations.

I'm all for 100% transparency. Arcane magic, divine magic, and nearly every natural supernatural capability interact 'normally'. I see no reason for psionics to be something completely different.

What are you proposing for 'weakened' spells/powers? Treat as some level of spell/psi resistance?

Sir Jason
2007-08-22, 08:56 AM
I think for the weakened part you can use the partial transparency rules from EPH. Like spell resistance = psi resistance but less of it... and such

I see your point. I guess that since divine magic and arcane magic interact normally, it WOULD make sense, rule-wise, for pionics to follow suit. It would be interesting to see a 'Divine is different' variant set up somewhere... ok, I can feel your seething hatred at the idea, so I'll drop that. I just like psi is diff because it adds a new type of character: combat-type, spellcaster-type, and psionic-type. Otherwise, psionics is just another [more balanced] type of magic-user with a bit of completely irrelevant fluff associated to it. But to each his own, and it is very influenced by the campaign in question too, so its hard to generalize.

Ulzgoroth
2007-08-22, 09:55 AM
Well, actually, if you made divine different...or even just made psionics different, but made the setting match the idea that there are two completely different 'magic-like' systems, by rolling out a reasonable number of psi-related creatures and features to match the swarm of magic-related ones...you could well do something interesting with it. I don't really see why 'psionic type' is interesting as a new type though. It's exactly the same 'just another magic user' as with full transparency except when they interact.

I see they did provide complete suggestions for partial separation of psi and magic. That's nice.

Douglas
2007-08-22, 10:30 AM
Here's how I view this sort of thing:
Arcane magic: You manipulate the energy of the world around you using various rituals (spells) that cause this energy to react in particular ways. You discovered the rituals either through careful study (wizard) or instinctive knowledge (sorcerer)

Divine magic: You pray to your god and he gives you the means to manipulate the energy of the world around you. Doing so requires particular rituals similar to arcane magic simply because its easier that way. A god could give his clerics the ability to do magic without going through the motions of spellcasting, but that would require a lot more effort on his part.

Psionics: You have an internal reservoir of energy that you use to create magical effects. The source of the energy makes it possible to manipulate it with pure force of will (no gestures or other components), but it's still energy and it still interacts with other energy in exactly the same way that any other energy would.

Magical energy comes from external sources, psionic is internal; they are both energy in the final analysis, however, and they interact just fine.

Cybren
2007-08-23, 01:16 AM
in dungeons and dragons transparency is done because that's what the rules support (and really, require). In other systems it's not needed so it's purely a matter of the settings rules.

AtomicKitKat
2007-08-23, 08:57 AM
The way I see it, part of the reason to encourage transparency is also because there's already too few skill points to spread around.:smallbiggrin:

lord_khaine
2007-08-23, 09:08 AM
transperency rules has nothing to do with skill points, its mainly for avoiding annoying combinations where fx the cleric hides the psion in a antimagic field, whereupon he then starts to nuke everything that didnt bring psionic protection to the clash.

kamikasei
2007-08-23, 09:24 AM
transperency rules has nothing to do with skill points, its mainly for avoiding annoying combinations where fx the cleric hides the psion in a antimagic field, whereupon he then starts to nuke everything that didnt bring psionic protection to the clash.

If you push for total transparency, I think the implication is, you can subsume Psicraft and Knowledge (psionics) under Spellcraft and Knowledge (arcana). (Althought (arcana) and (religion) are already distinct, so maybe just the *craft skills.)

Nero24200
2007-08-23, 09:48 AM
Personally, I've never liked Psionic's. If I wanted to shape reality with the power of my mind, theres already classes for that, the best example being a wizard.

Though having read the posts I would say that there shouldn't be any transparacy. Psionics and magic are regarded as two different things in terms of mechanics. You wouldn't have an antimagic feild weaken physical prowess would you?

Xuincherguixe
2007-08-23, 12:28 PM
I've thought about it, psionics aren't that different from magic. One could easily rule that the same forces power all, but different classes work with them differently.

Matthew
2007-08-24, 03:17 PM
Here's how I view this sort of thing:
Arcane magic: You manipulate the energy of the world around you using various rituals (spells) that cause this energy to react in particular ways. You discovered the rituals either through careful study (wizard) or instinctive knowledge (sorcerer)

Divine magic: You pray to your god and he gives you the means to manipulate the energy of the world around you. Doing so requires particular rituals similar to arcane magic simply because its easier that way. A god could give his clerics the ability to do magic without going through the motions of spellcasting, but that would require a lot more effort on his part.

Psionics: You have an internal reservoir of energy that you use to create magical effects. The source of the energy makes it possible to manipulate it with pure force of will (no gestures or other components), but it's still energy and it still interacts with other energy in exactly the same way that any other energy would.

Magical energy comes from external sources, psionic is internal; they are both energy in the final analysis, however, and they interact just fine.
This is, I think, the most common way of looking at it and the one supported in the Complete Mage. It's not the way I look at it, though. I think it takes internal power to manipulate external energy.

psychoticbarber
2007-08-24, 03:19 PM
I use the "Magic and Psionics are Different" variant, but I allow for magic to create defenses that are specifically tuned to work against Psionics and vice versa (or versa vice :smallwink:).

Starbuck_II
2007-08-24, 07:47 PM
If you push for total transparency, I think the implication is, you can subsume Psicraft and Knowledge (psionics) under Spellcraft and Knowledge (arcana). (Althought (arcana) and (religion) are already distinct, so maybe just the *craft skills.)

You imply/infer wrong.

Full transparency keeps them seperate skills.

tannish2
2007-08-25, 04:24 AM
well the way i look at it psionic/magic is the same just makes sense

divine magic, no chance of failure from wearing full plate and swinging something heavy, you get at least 1 type of spell to spontaneously cast, and you generally get other abilities as well

arcane magic: very powerful, especially battlefield controll and offensive stuff, also lots of utility, chance of failure if you wear armor, if you get full casting of this you probably dont get much else

psionic magic: you dont have so many limits on your spells, cant wear heavy armor (or have hair, has anyone else noticed this? anyone with mental powers is undergoing chemotherapy and wigs disentigrate on contact with them in all fantasy worlds!) its good for blowing the crap out of a couple encounters a day, like arcane magic you cant do it in armor(all metals must be made of hair! and your skin is jealous that the leather used to have hair) its also not vancian casting (different, unless you use mana points variant from unearthed arcana) and if you have full casting of this, you probably dont get much else

kamikasei
2007-08-25, 07:36 AM
You imply/infer wrong.

Full transparency keeps them seperate skills.

Yes, I'm aware of that. I was attempting to interpret AtomicKitKat's comment about having few enough skill points to spread around.

Dhavaer
2007-08-25, 07:42 AM
psionic magic: you dont have so many limits on your spells, cant wear heavy armor (or have hair, has anyone else noticed this? anyone with mental powers is undergoing chemotherapy and wigs disentigrate on contact with them in all fantasy worlds!) its good for blowing the crap out of a couple encounters a day, like arcane magic you cant do it in armor(all metals must be made of hair! and your skin is jealous that the leather used to have hair) its also not vancian casting (different, unless you use mana points variant from unearthed arcana) and if you have full casting of this, you probably dont get much else

That's not actually anything stopping you from using psionics in armour; Psions just don't get proficiency.

Keledrath
2007-08-25, 09:08 AM
And I for one don'r want to waste my 1, 1(if human), 3, and 6(if not human) on armor when I've only got a d4 anyways.

tannish2
2007-08-25, 03:06 PM
still, i look at psionics as basically a different type of magic, nothing else. it being seperate makes no more sense than arcane and divine magic being seperate (for dispell/spellcraft purposes)

AtomicKitKat
2007-08-25, 10:43 PM
Yeah. Disregard earlier comment about Spellcraft/Psicraft confluence. It does affect the value of things like Spell/Psi resistance. Dragon with 50 SR is useless against Psions, Elder Brain with 50 PR is useless against casters, etc.

Aquillion
2007-08-26, 01:07 AM
Psionics/magic transparency is a kludge. The books are extremely straightforward about it being a kludge. It exists to save both Wizards and DMs the work of balancing every creature and encounter against both magic and psionics. It serves absolutely no other purpose, and has absolutely no other logic behind it. It's an important kludge, but that's really all there is to say about it... if you have a DM willing to put in the work to treat psionics differently, naturally you'd treat it differently. Otherwise you don't. Usually you won't, since it's an awful lot of work.