Guide to Psionics: Part 2 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy

Guide to Psionics: Part 1 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy
Guide to Psionics: Part 3 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy

If you are joining the Nerdarchy for the first time and want to check out part 1 of my Guide to Psionics click here.

Guide to Psionics: Part 2 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy Mind_bullets_by_JediMSieerFor those of you returning for part 2 let us continue on with the guide.

Here are some of my first articles on psionics where I began to put the ideas for psionics into class form in this six part series for Nerdarchy: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6.

Those are some of my earliest writings on psionics. I am currently updating them so that they fall in line with my later articles.

The custom class sure has come a long way since I started working on it.

Onto the part 2 in the guide to Psionics for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition, the class features and disciplines!

Before I started selecting powers and features I asked my fellow Nerdarchists for some advice.

The Base Class: For those of you interested in modifying classes I recently read the unearthed arcana modifying classes and it was very helpful for the final tweaking of the psionics class.

Every thing has a start and I began my psionic homebrew by selecting a class that came the closest to resembling psionics in spirit and mechanics.

I went with Sorcerer for the base class because it met most of the requirements that I was looking for when making Psionics.

  1. the Sorcerer has spontaneous casting(spells known and spell slots)
  2. the ability to augment powers (metamagic)
  3. an origin that begins at first level
  4. a weapon selection that I would associate with psionics and their martial prowess.

Of course I immediately began to augment those class features to change the dynamics of the class.

  1. I exchanged their spell slots for a spell pool (psychic well) and spell points (drams). This allowed for the psionic fell of a central well of power where every manifestation of power originates.
  2. I stripped away the spell list and selected spells from the entire list of spells in the Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition PHB. Since the spells become powers that show the breadth of a psionic discipline it was important to not restrict them to any one spell list.

An example that comes to mind is the Relativist (discipline of time and space) They have a spell list that comes from every full caster’s list. They have druid spells that alter how a plant grows, they have cleric spells associated with healing, and they have spells dealing with weight, time, teleportation, and movement.

Some of these spells sound strange when associated with one class but I selected spells not on the merit of their names but on the mechanics of the spells.

Most of the disciplines have spells that sound strange upon hearing the name of it but they make sense once the mechanics of the spell are considered or the spell is called something else.

Guide to Psionics: Part 2 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy

Before I get way too deep into class design tips let us set down the starting custom class feature.

Guide to Psionics: Part 2 for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition | Nate of Nerdarchy psionics pyroHit Points
Hit Dice: 1d6 per Psionicists level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 6 + your Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d6 (or 4) + your
Constitution modifier per psionicists level after 1st
Proficiencies:
Armor: none
Weapons: Simple weapons
Tools: none
Saving Throws: Wisdom, see Discipline selection for 2nd saving throw

Skills: Choose two from Psionics (Arcane), History, Insight, Medicine, Perception, and any additional skills added to the list from your chosen discipline.

  • A Metabolist’s body undergoes tremendous strain due to the mental powers that are worked through it. Expansion isn’t easy on the digestive tract and shapechanging isn’t for the faint of heart.
    • Gain Strength as one of your saving throws(if you have only one save from all of your classes)
    •  Add Athletics and Animal Handling to your list of starting skill choices
  • A Relativist’s body is intimately linked with movement both of the physical and dimensional kind. Their mind and movement become faster and they regularly calculate great changes in forces.
    • Gain Intelligence as one of your saving throws(if you have only one save from all of your classes)
    • Add Acrobatics and Sleight of Hand to your list of starting skill choices
  • A Kineticist’s body feels is intimately linked with the push and pull of forces. They naturally apply their Kinetic abilities to assist them with physical movement.
    • Gain Strength as one of your saving throws(if you have only one save from all of your classes)
    • Add Athletics and Stealth to your list of starting skill choices
  • A Telepath’s force of personality is as vital to their powers as their discipline and willpower. One does not force themselves behind the mental walls of others without a presence to match their will.
    • Gain Charisma as one of your saving throws(if you have only one save from all of your classes)
    • Add Persuasion and Deception to your list of starting skill choices
  • A Cognizant’s ability to remember, categorize, and analyze all of the different stimuli(visions) that they receive through their mental might is a power onto itself. 
    • Gain Intelligence as one of your saving throws(if you have only one save from all of your classes)
    • Add Investigation and Survival to your list of starting skill choices

Some of my earliest commenters have been a great help to me by pointing out unintended consequences of my wording for certain rules in Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition

For example: the way I originally worded the psionics’ second saving throw made it seem as though they were receiving it as a class feature. This would lead to taking a level in a psionic class and getting a total of three saves just for picking up the class level.

That was not a desired outcome so I reworded it to reflect my actual desires for the class wherever I have had an error pointed out to me.

Let me know what you think of the revised wording and any advise or choices that you would have made when making the psionics class.

And be sure to share this with like minded people who may wish to join the Nerdarchy.

Until next time, stay nerdy!

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I would say my manner, skill sets, and subject knowledge are incongruous but they all seem to find a home under the umbrella term of nerd. I have a passion for studying science, religion, art, games, crafting, wine/beer-crafting, sustainable living, and green chemistry. I really enjoy gaming with friends and writing about my experiences as a nerd.

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