Soulknife Theme

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Original Foreword
I have Dark Sun in hand.  It is more glorious than I had expected.  I don't yet have Psionic Power, but I know what's not in it.  And so it is that we don't have an official "soulknife" still.  While I consider the Monk option to be perfectly viable (it's in my sig - the "quick soulknife"), I have seen the future, and it's name is themes.  Seriously, they're as great as one might suspect.  So, since I've already tried my hand at creating a full Soulknife class (eh, it was okay), and I've already put together a quick version (I do really like the monk approach; I've essentially adopted it en-masse for the Mindblade feat here), I figure it's time to put together a Theme approach.

So here goes.  Note that this is all rough-draft at the moment.  It needs the fluff filled in, obviously, though the mechanics should all be there, more or less.  I haven't bothered to piece together the required two paragon paths yet - I'm looking for suggestions on those.  I'm obviously looking for feedback on all of this, as always.

EDIT: I should note that one of the features folks will want the absolute most (the mind blade itself) is found in the Feats section.  Themes don't give out features, so that seems the obvious place to fit it.


Prior Intro
This has been heavily revised, with some input here, and some ideas other folks mentioned in other discussion.  For the first time I would consider this close to "a finished product".


Again, this has been revised, this time with CharOp input.  The major design change this time around was abandoning the Free Action Attack model, for the more acceptable Minor Action Attack model.  It took some time away to accept some of the flaws the prior version had, but I feel fairly confident that this most resembles what will be the final version.

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Soulknife

[Version 5.0]

Psylocke Standin

"My will is strong and my mind is sharp - with them, I will cut through any obstacle that stands in my way."

Those with the gift of psionic talent all know that the mind is a potent weapon, but few take that idea as literally as the soulknife.  Those who can focus their mind to create a blade of pure psychic energy are marked as powerful warriors.  

How they come to this gift varies from person to person.  Soulknives have been trained in monastaries for as long as scholars have recorded such things.  Tales of warriors who fought with weapons drawn from force of will alone are nearly as old as the monastic traditions themselves.  The first soulknives were those individuals who discovered that their focus and meditation, when properly channeled, could create a semi-physcal object.  However, these early examples where too short-lived and intangible to be of practical use.  Long years of experimentation and practice followed.  Frustration and anger at the process eventually yielded results - aggressive, destructive thoughts could shape this simple energy into a weapon.  With this discovered, the practice bloomed.

While the tradition of the soulknife differs from world to world, there are some common elements.  Soulknives are often associated with monks, and monastic traditions.  This is where the practice was developed, and where it is still the strongest.  However, through the centuries the skills of the soulknife have spread, and now many organizations that find its talents useful are willing to train those with the capabilities.  The ability to have a blade handy with just a thought has been especially favored by organizations of assassins and bodyguards - both occupations where appearing unarmed is an asset.  In addition, some individuals with the spark of psionic talent still develop their own skills independently, with no training or guidance.

The Soulknife on Athas
Psionic power is common on Athas, and thus so too are soulknives.  Some city-states offer training in the art of crafting the mind blade, while others seek to control or purge the practice.  Gladiators with latent psionic talent may hone that talent into the skills necessary to wield a mind blade, giving them a distinct edge in the arenas.  Many soulknives on Athas are untrained, developing their talents spontaneously, much as wilders do.

The Soulknife on Eberron
On Eberron, the soulknife tradition was founded by the kalashtar in their homeland of Adar.  The kalashtar are gifted with a natural psionic talent, and have long lived with a strong monastic tradition.  The path of the soulknife was developed as a means to channel their psionic talent into a weapon of self defense.  Kalashtar soulknives take comfort in their ability to fight and repel the Inspired whenever it is necessary.  As the kalashtar have spread throughout Khorvaire, they have brought the skills of the soulknife to the wider world.  Today the tradition is found practiced by many diverse groups, from the guardians of kalashtar communities, to the special espionage agencies of the prominent nations.

The Soulknife on Toril
Arcane and Divine magic are the primary powers on Toril, and thus psionic power remains largely unexplored.  While some soulknives may be trained by other, older psionicists, most have simply had to hone their talent on their own.  Thus, on Toril, most soulknives are self-taught.  Many know nothing about their true psionic potential, often mistaking it for simply another magical talent


Building a Soulknife


The tradition of the soulknife is often passed down from master to apprentice within psionic circles.  The focus involved with the practice has often been seen as a good way to channel aggressive and destructive tendencies into a more practical form of psychic energy.  By far, the most commonly trained soulknives are monks.  Some monastaries go so far as to train all of their students in the art.  Outside of these secretive organizations, assassins guilds train anyone with a flicker of psionic talent.  Assassins, rangers, and rogues are all commonly trained to augment their impressive skills with a psionic arsenal.  Some other characters are most likely to develop the talents naturally.  Untrained ardent, battlemind, and fighter soulknives are not unheard of.

Power Points: If you choose a soulknife attack power of level 3 or 7 instead of a nonaugmentable encounter attack power at that level, you also gain 2 power points.  If you do so with a power of level 13 or 17, you instead gain 4 power points, and if you do so with a power of level 23 or 27, you instead gain 6 power points.  If you later relinquish your soulknife attack powers through retraining, you lose the power points you gained from the earlier choice.

Soulknife Traits


     Secondary Role: Striker
     Power Source: Psionic
     Granted Power: You gain 1 power point and the psychic strike and shape mind blade powers.


Soulknife Powers


The following powers are available to any character who has chosen the soulknife theme.

Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack.
    Level 11: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.
    Augment 1
        Hit: The target takes 1[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack, and grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
            Level 11: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.
            Level 21: 3[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.

Shape Mind Blade            Soulknife Feature
You focus your thoughts into a physical weapon.
At-Will ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Requirement: You must have a hand free.
Effect: You create a mind blade in one free hand.  When you create a mind blade, you can choose to form either a light mind blade or a heavy mind blade.
    The light mind blade is a one-handed light blade with the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, 1d6 damage, and a range of 5/10.
    The heavy mind blade is a one-handed heavy blade with the high crit and versatile properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, and 1d8 damage.
    You are proficient with your mind blade.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one (see below).  The mind blade disappears if you are not touching it at the end of your turn.
Special: When you use this power, choose a single weapon in your possession that shares one or more weapon groups with the type of mind blade you create (you do not have to be holding or wielding the weapon).  So long as the weapon remains in your possession, your mind blade shares the chosen weapon's enhancement bonus, critical hit effect, properties, and powers.



Level 2 Utility Discipline


Extended Blade            Soulknife Utility 2
You expand your mind blade, giving yourself extra reach or extra range.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn has its reach increased by 1 if it is a melee attack, or has its range increased by 5 if it is a ranged attack.


Level 3 At-Will Discipline


Disrupting Bladestrike            Soulknife Attack 3
Your blade surges with power, disrupting your foe's mind.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
 Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
 Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
 Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
 Hit: The target takes 1[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack.  The target is slowed and cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 13
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.  The target is immobilized and cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 23
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.  The target is immobilized and dazed until the end of your next turn.


Level 5 Daily Discipline


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade explodes into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon, Zone
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage.
Effect: The burst creates a zone of swirling blade shards until the end of your next turn.  If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that starts its turn within the zone takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.
Special: The zone remains centered on you, even if you move.
Sustain Minor: The zone persists.
    Level 15
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier damage.
    Level 25
        Close burst 3
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that enters the zone or starts its turn there takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.


Level 6 Utility Discipline


Duodimensional Blade    Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn can target Reflex instead of AC.


Level 7 At-Will Discipline


Terrorizing Bladestrike        Soulknife Attack 3
Dark thoughts pour from your blade, poisoning your foe's mind with fear.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
 Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
 Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
  Hit: The target takes 1[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack, and you push the target 3 squares.
    Level 17
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.
    Level 27
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.  The target cannot stand up until the end of your next turn.


Level 9 Daily Discipline


Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
Your mind blade pulses with deadly energy, eating away at your foe's very essence.
Encounter ♦ Necrotic, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
 Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Fortitude and Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
Miss: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 19
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 20 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 29
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 20 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).


Level 10 Utility Discipline


Draining Blade            Soulknife Utility 10
You alter your mind blade into a conduit for draining psychic power.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: If you hit with the next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn, you can spend a healing surge, and you can also choose to either regain 1 power point or gain a +2 power bonus to all defenses until the end of your next turn.


Feats


Brutal Psyche
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, psychic strike power
Benefit: Whenever you make the damage roll for your psychic strike power, reroll each die that shows a 1 until it shows a different number.  If you augment psychic strike, instead reroll each die that shows a 1 or a 2 until it shows a different number.

Morphous Blade
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: During a short or extended rest, choose one of the following weapon groups or weapon properties: axe, flail, hammer, heavy blade, light blade, pick, spear; brutal 1, defensive, heavy thrown, high crit, light thrown, off-hand, or reach.  Until your next extended rest, when you use shape mind blade, your mind blade is created with the chosen group or property in addition to its normal group and properties.  If your blade gains the heavy thrown or light thrown properties, it has a range of 5/10.  You can choose a different option during any short or extended rest.

Rapid Bladeshaper
Prerequisite: Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: You can use shape mind blade as a free action, or as part of the same action used to attack with the mind blade.

Thoughtseeker's Blade
Prerequisite:
21st level, soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: When you make a basic attack using your mind blade, you can target Will.

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Strength from Within
Prerequisite: Any psionic class
Benefit: You can use the ki focus implement.  If you have an attuned ki focus, you can use the ki focus's enhancement, critical, properties, and powers with any weapon you wield.  If you wield a magic weapon, you must choose to either use the weapon's enchantment, or the ki focus's enchantment.  (See Player's Handbook 3, page 203, for more details on using a ki focus.)



Mind Hunter


"You may be careful and you may be quiet, but your thoughts are all I need to find you.  Though when I do find you, I plan to silence those too."

Prerequisite: Soulknife theme

A soulknife needs dedication and focus to truly master the craft.  Those who expand that focus to other ends can find their own psionic awareness heightened.  Some rare few have learned to hone their mental senses in addition to their blades.  They are able to sense a foe's thoughts, and through them locate their prey.  These experts are known as mind hunters, and for their enemies they are terrible to behold.  Most mind hunters are assassins, bounty hunters, or bodyguards - professions where their particular talents often prove indespensable.

As a mind hunter, you have tapped into a sense that many others cannot imagine.  You track your foes across the battlefield, even when you cannot see or hear them.  When you find them, you strike swiftly, bringing them down with a mix of deadly bladework and potent psychic assault.  Few are willing to face you in battle, but even fewer possess the skill required to escape you.


Mind Hunter Path Features


Mind Hunter Action (11th Level): When you spend an action point to make an attack using your mind blade, you make two attack rolls and use either result.  In addition, you can use an additional free action attack power this turn.
Paragon Power Points (11th Level): You gain 2 additional power points.
Sense Thoughts (11th Level): You gain telepathy 5.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you roll twice and use either result.
Pinpoint Thoughts (16th Level): When you make an attack against a creature within 5 squares of you, you treat creatures with concealment as if they have no concealment, and you treat creatures with total concealment as if they have concealment.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you know its exact location if you beat the target's Stealth check by any amount.


Mind Hunter Disciplines


Humbling Bladestrike            Mind Hunter Attack 11
A sense of dread and self-doubt flows from your blade.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack and is weakened until the end of your next turn.
    Augment 2
        Hit: 2[w] + ability modifier extra psychic damage, and until the end of your next turn the only attacks the target can make are basic attacks.

Irresistible Blade            Mind Hunter Utility 12
You imbue your blade with a surge of energy, allowing it to pierce any resistance.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn ignores all resistances.

Rend Thoughts                Mind Hunter Attack 20
Psychic energy allows your blade to slice through your foe's consciousness.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with a basic or unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 2[W] + ability modifier extra psychic damage from the triggering attack, and is knocked prone and stunned (save ends).
    First Failed Save: The target is instead unconscious (save ends).  If the unconscious target takes any damage, it is no longer unconscious.
    Aftereffect: The target is dazed until the end of your next turn.
Miss: The target is dazed (save ends).


[sblock=Previous Versions]
Version 4.0

==============================================================

Soulknife

[Version 4.0]

[Fluff]

Soulknife Traits


     Secondary Role: Striker
     Power Source: Psionic
     Granted Power: You gain 1 power point and the psychic strike and shape mind blade powers.



Soulknife Powers


The following powers are available to any character who has chosen the soulknife theme.

Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Minor Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Target: One creature.
Attack: Primary ability vs. AC, or Primary ability vs. Will if you have already hit the target with a weapon attack this turn.
Hit: 1d4 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2d4 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3d4 psychic damage.
    Augment 1
        Hit: 1d6 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
            Level 11: 2d6 psychic damage.
            Level 21: 3d6 psychic damage.

Shape Mind Blade            Soulknife Feature
You focus your thoughts into a physical weapon.
At-Will ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Requirement: You must have a hand free.
Effect: You create a mind blade in one free hand.  When you create a mind blade, you can choose to form either a light mind blade or a heavy mind blade.
    The light mind blade is a one-handed light blade with the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, 1d6 damage, and a range of 5/10.
    The heavy mind blade is a one-handed heavy blade with the versatile property, a +3 proficiency bonus, and 1d8 damage.
    You are proficient with your mind blade.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one (see below).  The mind blade disappears if you are not touching it at the end of your turn.
Special: If you are attuned to a ki focus you can use its enhancement bonus, critical, property, and powers with your mind blade.


Level 2 Utility Discipline


Extended Blade            Soulknife Utility 2
You expand your mind blade, giving yourself extra reach or extra range.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn has its reach increased by 1 if it is a melee attack, or has its range increased by 5 if it is a ranged attack.


Level 3 At-Will Discipline


Disrupting Bladestrike            Soulknife Attack 3
Your blade surges with power, disrupting your foe's mind.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Minor Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: One creature.
Attack: Primary ability vs. AC, or Primary ability vs. Will if you have already hit the target with a weapon attack this turn.
Hit: 1[W] psychic damage, and the target cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 13
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls and cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 23
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage, and the target is dazed until the end of your next turn.


Level 5 Daily Discipline


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade explodes into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon, Zone
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage.
Effect: The burst creates a zone of swirling blade shards until the end of your next turn.  If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that starts its turn within the zone takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.
Special: The zone remains centered on you, even if you move.
Sustain Minor: The zone persists.
    Level 15
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier damage.
    Level 25
        Close burst 3
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that enters the zone or starts its turn there takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.


Level 6 Utility Discipline


Duodimensional Blade    Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn can target Reflex instead of AC.


Level 7 At-Will Discipline


Terrorizing Bladestrike        Soulknife Attack 3
Dark thoughts pour from your blade, poisoning your foe's mind with fear.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Minor Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: One creature.
Attack: Primary ability vs. AC, or Primary ability vs. Will if you have already hit the target with a weapon attack this turn.
Hit: 1[W] psychic damage, and you push the target 3 squares.
    Level 17
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.
    Level 27
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.  The target cannot stand up until the end of your next turn.


Level 9 Daily Discipline


Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
Your mind blade pulses with deadly energy, eating away at your foe's very essence.
Encounter ♦ Necrotic, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Minor Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Target: One creature.
Attack: Primary ability vs. AC and Fortitude, or Primary ability vs. Fortitude and Will if you have already hit the target with a weapon attack this turn.
Hit:
2[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
    Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
Miss: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 19
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 29
        Hit: 4[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 25 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).


Level 10 Utility Discipline


Draining Blade            Soulknife Utility 10
You alter your mind blade into a conduit for draining psychic power.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: If you hit with the next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn, you can spend a healing surge, and you can also choose to either regain 1 power point or gain a +2 power bonus to all defenses until the end of your next turn.

Version 3.0

==============================================================

Soulknife

[Version 3.0]

[Fluff]

Soulknife Traits


     Secondary Role: Striker
     Power Source: Psionic
     Granted Power: You gain 1 power point and the psychic strike and shape mind blade powers.


Soulknife Powers


The following powers are available to any character who has chosen the soulknife theme.

Shape Mind Blade            Soulknife Feature
You focus your thoughts into a physical weapon.
At-Will ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Requirement: You must have a hand free.
Effect: You create a mind blade in one free hand.  When you create a mind blade, you can choose to form either a light mind blade or a heavy mind blade.
    The light mind blade is a one-handed light blade with the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, 1d6 damage, and a range of 5/10.
    The heavy mind blade is a one-handed heavy blade with the high crit and versatile properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, and 1d8 damage.
    You are proficient with your mind blade.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one (see below).  The mind blade disappears if you are not touching it at the end of your turn.
Special: If you are attuned to a ki focus you can use its enhancement bonus, critical, property, and powers with your mind blade.

Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic
Free Action
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Effect: The target takes an additional 1d6 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2d6 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3d6 psychic damage.
    Augment 1
        Effect: The target takes an additional 1d8 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
            Level 11: 2d8 psychic damage.
            Level 21: 3d8 psychic damage.


Level 2 Utility Discipline


Extended Blade            Soulknife Utility 2
You expand your mind blade, giving yourself extra reach or extra range.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn has its reach increased by 1 if it is a melee attack, or has its range increased by 5 if it is a ranged attack.


Level 3 At-Will Discipline


Disrupting Bladestrike            Soulknife Attack 3
Your blade surges with power, disrupting your foe's mind.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 1[W] psychic damage, and the target cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 13
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target is dazed until the end of your next turn.
    Level 23
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage, and the target is stunned until the end of your next turn.


Level 5 Daily Discipline


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade explodes into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon, Zone
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage.
Effect: The burst creates a zone of swirling blade shards until the end of your next turn.  If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that starts its turn within the zone takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.
Special: The zone remains centered on you, even if you move.
Sustain Minor: The zone persists.
    Level 15
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier damage.
    Level 25
        Close burst 3
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that enters the zone or starts its turn there takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.


Level 6 Utility Discipline


Duodimensional Blade    Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn can score a critical hit on a roll of 18-20.  In addition, if the attack targets AC, you can choose to target Reflex instead.


Level 7 At-Will Discipline


Terrorizing Bladestrike        Soulknife Attack 3
Dark thoughts pour from your blade, poisoning your foe's mind with fear.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 1[W] psychic damage, and you push the target 3 squares.
    Level 17
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.
    Level 27
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.  The target cannot stand up until the end of your next turn.


Level 9 Daily Discipline


Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
Your mind blade pulses with deadly energy, eating away at your foe's very essence.
Encounter ♦ Necrotic, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action        Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Fortitude and Will
Hit: 2[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
    Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
Miss: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 19
        Hit: 3[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 29
        Hit: 4[W] psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 25 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 15 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).


Level 10 Utility Discipline


Draining Blade            Soulknife Utility 10
You alter your mind blade into a conduit for draining psychic power.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: If you hit with the next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn, you can spend a healing surge, and you can also choose to either regain 1 power point or gain a +2 power bonus to all defenses until the end of your next turn.


Feats


Brutal Psyche
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, psychic strike power
Benefit: Whenever you make the damage roll for your psychic strike power, reroll each die that shows a 1 until it shows a different number.  If you augment psychic strike, instead reroll each die that shows a 1 or a 2 until it shows a different number.

Morphous Blade
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: During a short or extended rest, choose one of the following weapon groups or weapon properties: axe, flail, hammer, heavy blade, light blade, pick, spear; brutal 1, defensive, heavy thrown, high crit, light thrown, off-hand, or reach.  When you use shape mind blade, your mind blade is created with the chosen group or property in addition to its normal group and properties.  You can choose a different option during any short or extended rest.

Rapid Bladeshaper
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: You can use shape mind blade as a free action.

Thoughtseeker's Blade
Prerequisite:
21st level, soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: When you make a basic attack using your mind blade, you can target Will.

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Strength from Within
Prerequisite: Any psionic class
Benefit: You can use the ki focus implement.  If you have an attuned ki focus, you can use the ki focus's enhancement, critical, properties, and powers with any weapon you wield.  If you wield a magic weapon, you must choose to either use the weapon's enchantment, or the ki focus's enchantment.  (See Player's Handbook 3, page 203, for more details on using a ki focus.)



Mind Hunter


"You may be careful and you may be quiet, but your thoughts are all I need to find you.  Though when I do find you, I plan to silence those too."

Prerequisite: Soulknife theme

A soulknife needs dedication and focus to truly master the craft.  Those who expand that focus to other ends can find their own psionic awareness heightened.  Some rare few have learned to hone their mental senses in addition to their blades.  They are able to sense a foe's thoughts, and through them locate their prey.  These experts are known as mind hunters, and for their enemies they are terrible to behold.  Most mind hunters are assassins, bounty hunters, or bodyguards - professions where their particular talents often prove indespensable.

As a mind hunter, you have tapped into a sense that many others cannot imagine.  You track your foes across the battlefield, even when you cannot see or hear them.  When you find them, you strike swiftly, bringing them down with a mix of deadly bladework and potent psychic assault.  Few are willing to face you in battle, but even fewer possess the skill required to escape you.


Mind Hunter Path Features


Mind Hunter Action (11th Level): When you spend an action point to make an attack using your mind blade, you gain a +1 bonus on the attack roll, and can use a free action attack power this turn, even if you have already done so.
Paragon Power Points (11th Level): You gain 2 additional power points.
Sense Thoughts (11th Level): You gain telepathy 5.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you roll twice and use either result.
Pinpoint Thoughts (16th Level): When you make an attack against a creature within 5 squares of you, you treat creatures with concealment as if they have no concealment, and you treat creatures with total concealment as if they have concealment.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you know its exact location if you beat the target's Stealth check by any amount.


Mind Hunter Disciplines


Humbling Bladestrike            Mind Hunter Attack 11
A sense of dread and self-doubt flows from your blade.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target is weakened until the end of your next turn.
    Augment 2
        Hit: 2[w] psychic damage, and until the end of your next turn the only attacks the target can make are basic attacks.

Irresistible Blade            Mind Hunter Utility 12
You imbue your blade with a surge of energy, allowing it to pierce any resistance.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn ignores all resistances.

Rend Thoughts                Mind Hunter Attack 20
Psychic energy allows your blade to slice through your foe's consciousness.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Standard Action        Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target is knocked prone and is stunned (save ends).
    First Failed Save: The target is instead unconscious (save ends).  If the unconscious target takes any damage, it is no longer unconscious.
    Aftereffect: The target is dazed until the end of your next turn.
Miss: Half damage, and the target is dazed (save ends).

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Soulknife

[Version 2.0]

[Fluff]

Soulknife Traits


     Secondary Role: Striker
     Power Source: Psionic
     Granted Power: You gain the psychic blade strike power.


Soulknife Powers


The following powers are available to any character who has chosen the soulknife theme.

Psychic Blade Strike            Soulknife Feature
You focus your will into a psychic blade and launch it at your foe, cutting flesh and disrupting thoughts.
Encounter ♦ Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Melee touch or Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage plus 1d8 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 3d6 + ability modifier damage plus 2d8 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 4d6 + ability modifier damage plus 3d8 psychic damage.


Level 2 Utility Discipline


Guarding Thoughts            Soulknife Utility 2
You focus your thoughts into a protective shield of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: You gain a +1 shield bonus to AC and Reflex defense until the end of the encounter.  You can end this effect as a free action to gain a +4 power bonus to Will defense until the end of your next turn.


Level 3 Encounter Discipline


Blade Shard Volley            Soulknife Attack 3
You launch one or more psychic blades that shatter as they strike.
Encounter ♦ Force, Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Melee touch or Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage.
    Level 13
        Attack: Make two attack rolls, and if either of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if both attack rolls hit.
    Level 23
        Attack: Make three attack rolls, and if any of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if two attack rolls hit, or 15 force and psychic damage if three attack rolls hit.


Level 5 Daily Discipline


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade shatters into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 +
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)

Psychic Blade Strike            Soulknife Feature
You focus your will into a psychic blade and launch it at your foe, cutting flesh and disrupting thoughts.
Encounter ♦ Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage.


Issue: the plus 5 psychic damage seems wierd.  I'd also be tempted to make it a Ranged 10 or Melee 1 power.

If we take away the ability modifier damage, we have more "design space".

Hit: 1d6 untyped plus 2d8 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 1d6 untyped plus 3d8 psychic damage
    Level 21: 2d6 untyped plus 4d8 psychic damage


Level 2 Utility Discipline


Guarding Thoughts            Soulknife Utility 2
You use your psychic blade to defend yourself from attack.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Immediate Interrupt        Personal
Trigger: You are hit by an attack.
Effect: You gain a +2 power bonus to AC and Reflex defense, and resist 5 psychic, until the end of your next turn.


This doesn't seem very soul-knife esque.  We could make it a one-off parry instead?  Ie, you make an attack roll with a target number equal to the attacker's roll.  If you beat the attacker's roll, the attack misses.  If you want to be generous, the power can be reliable.

That keeps the focus on "you have a blade made out of mental energy" -- ie, the utility power is based around using the blade directly.

So:

Parry through Thought            Soulknife Utility 2
You use your psychic blade to defend yourself from attack.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Implement, Reliable
Immediate Interrupt        Personal
Trigger: You are hit by an attack.
Attack: Your highest ability score vs the attack roll.
Hit: The attack misses.


Level 3 Encounter Discipline


Blade Shard Volley            Soulknife Attack 3
You launch a psychic blade that splits into several shards before it strikes.
Encounter ♦ Force, Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 force and psychic damage.
    Level 13
        Attack: Make two attack rolls, and if either of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage, plus 5 force and psychic damage if one attack roll hits, or plus 10 force and psychic damage if both attack rolls hit.
    Level 23
        Attack: Make three attack rolls, and if any of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage, plus 5 force and psychic damage if one attack roll hits, plus 10 force and psychic damage if two attack rolls hit, or plus 15 force and psychic damage if three attack rolls hit.


Once again, I see the mind blade as a melee and thrown item.  And the core of this ability "several shards" should be there from level 3 onward.  Finally, static bonuses to damage while equal to rolled are less fun!

Blade Shards            Soulknife Attack 3
Your psychic blade splits into several shards before it strikes.
Encounter ♦ Force, Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Melee 1 or Ranged 10
Target: One or two creatures
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex, two attack rolls.  If you score multiple hits on one target with this power, resolve them as a single hit.
Hit: 1d6 untyped plus 1d8 force and psychic damage.  If multiple attack rolls hit the same target, roll both the d6 and the d8 once per attack roll that hit the target.
Special: You do not provoke opportunity attacks from targets of this power.
    Level 13
       Target: One, two or three targets
       Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex, three attack rolls.  If you score multiple hits on one target with this power, resolve them as a single hit.
    Level 23
       Target: One, two, three or four targets
       Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex, four attack rolls.  If you score multiple hits on one target with this power, resolve them as a single hit.

I think that is similar in power, but has greater versatility.  It would also be fun to use.


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade shatters into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage.
Miss: Half damage.
Effect: Until the end of your next turn, any enemy that enters a square adjacent to you or starts its turn there takes force and psychic damage equal to your primary ability modifier.
    Level 15
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: Until the end of your next turn, any enemy that enters a square adjacent to you or starts its turn there takes force and psychic damage equal to 2 + your primary ability modifier.
    Level 25
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: Until the end of your next turn, any enemy that enters a square adjacent to you or starts its turn there takes force and psychic damage equal to 5 + your primary ability modifier.



Good fluff.  It doesn't scale very well -- that is a very poor level 25 daily.  Use of primary ability modifier in damage expressions seems pointless -- a fixed autodamage would do just as well, and reduce complexity.

If I was going to make this power fun, I'd go and have it create an aura.  The first time a creature is within the aura on a given round, you'd make an attack vs reflex to do damage to it.  The aura would last until the end of your next turn.

This generates lots of fun -- it is optimal to start off with lots of people near you, then move as much as possible to get as much coverage as you can.  Next turn, you'd want to do this again.

Going further, you could make it sustain standard.


Level 6 Utility Discipline


Sever the Bonds            Soulknife Utility 6
You hone your thoughts into a psychic blade and cut through your mental or physical restraints.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Free Action            Personal
Effect: You end one effect that dazes, immobilizes, restrains, or slows you.


This is pretty damn strong.  Granting a saving throw with a bonus as a minor action is pretty par for this course at this level.  This just ends (a list of) status effects on a per-encounter basis.

Making it a minor action makes sense, as it is something you are doing.  Another interesting idea might be to make it an attack vs the will of the creature who placed the effect on you -- on a success, you transfer the effect to them (unless the creature is immune to illusions)...

Dunno really.


Level 7 Encounter Discipline


Embedded Blade            Soulknife Attack 7
As your blade strikes it sticks in the flesh, acting as a beacon for your continued attacks.
Encounter ♦ Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage, and the target gains vulnerable 5 psychic until the end of your next turn.
    Level 17
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage, and the target gains vulnerable 10 psychic until the end of your next turn.
    Level 21
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage plus 5 psychic damage, and the target gains vulnerable 15 psychic until the end of your next turn.


2d6 untyped plus 2d8 psychic, scaling by to 3d/4d at paragon epic?

For epic, instead of having the vulnerability hit 15, what if it stayed 10 but gained Sustain Minor: Make a Primary ability vs Will attack.  If you miss, you may not sustain the power again. 


Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
You fire your psychic blade deep into your foe, past flesh and bones, to cut at his vitality itself.
Encounter ♦ Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target takes ongoing 5 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
Miss: Half damage, and the target takes ongoing 5 psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 19
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).        
    Level 29
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is stunned (save ends both).


Make it melee 1 or ranged 10.

Maybe play: make the damage an effect, while the hit determines if they take ongoing damage and the dazed component.  Then you can change the attack to be vs. Will -- the blow is going to hit, the question is if your soul can take it?

Ie:
Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
You fire your psychic blade deep into your foe, past flesh and bones, to cut at his vitality itself.
Encounter ♦ Implement, Psionic, Psychic
Standard Action        Melee 1 or Ranged 10
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Effect: 2d6 damage
Hit: The target takes ongoing 5 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
Miss: The target cannot take opportunity attacks (save ends).
    Level 19
        Effect: 3d8 damage
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
        Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and cannot take opportunty attacks (save ends both).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and cannot take opportunty attacks (save ends both).
    Level 29
        Effect: 4d10 damage
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is stunned (save ends both).
        Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).

That might be going to far, but it seems like a really fun ability.

As the Blade Flies            Soulknife Utility 10
As you propel your mental blade, you propel yourself.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Move Action            Personal
Effect: You teleport 2 + your primary ability modifier squares.



This is just an arbitrary teleport.  Once again, this is about the blade.

As the Blade Flies            Soulknife Utility 10
As you propel your mental blade, you propel yourself.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Move Action            Personal
Effect: You teleport to a square adjacent to a creature you have attacked with your Mind Blade or Soulknife Theme powers this round.

Now, you literally rode the blade you attacked with!

Feats


Mind Blade
Prerequisite: Soulknife theme
Benefit: You gain the ability to create a mind blade, and you gain proficiency with your mind blade.  When you make a weapon attack such as a melee basic attack, you can use the mind blade, which is a weapon in the light blade group.  This weapon has the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties and a +3 proficiency bonus, and it deals 1d6 damage.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one.



You didn't explain how you create mind blades.  I'd also make this give you proficiency with the ki focus implement.

So, revised:

Mind Blade
Prerequisite: Soulknife theme
Benefit: You gain the ability to create a mind blade as a minor action, and you gain proficiency with your mind blade.  The mind blade comes in one of three forms, chosen when you create it: a +3 proficiency 1d6 damage light blade with the offhand and light thrown properties that counts as a dagger, a +2 proficiency 1d10 (brutal 2) damage versatile heavy blade/axe, or a +3 proficiency 1d8 light blade/heavy blade.  You also gain proficiency with ki focuses, and can use your ki focus enchantments when making an attack with the mind blade or Soulknife theme powers.  A mind blade cannot otherwise be enchanted.

I created the three kinds of iconic mind blades in my mind: the small throwing knife, the elegant sword, and the heavy chopping blade.

Which one you use is probably going to be dependant on your build.



Thought Seeking Strike
Prerequisite: 11th level, Souknife theme, psychic blade strike power
Benefit: If you miss an enemy with your psychic blade strike, you can repeat the attack against a second target within 5 squares of the first, using a square in the first target's space as the attack's origin square.



Fun and all, but the focus of "about the blade" should be paramount.  Each Soulknife feat should boost the properties of your mind blade, or give you a new option.

Thought Seeking Strike
Prerequisite: 11th level, Souknife theme, psychic blade strike power
Benefit: If you miss an enemy with your psychic blade strike, you can repeat the attack against a second target within 5 squares of the first, using a square in the first target's space as the attack's origin square.  Your mind blade gains the high-crit property, and damage dealt from the high crit dice is psychic.


Staggering Blade Strike
Prerequisite: Soulknife theme, psychic blade strike power
Benefit: When you hit an enemy with your psychic blade strike, you slide that target 1 square.  At 11th level, you slide the target 2 squares.  At 21st level, you slide the target 3 squares.


Meh.  For a third feat we can do better, or at least more fun!

First, we could extend the slide to any critical with a soulknife theme power or any critical with an attack from your mind blade.

Second, add "and is knock prone" at paragon, and "and is either knocked prone, or dazed until the end of your next turn" at epic.

That both makes your mind blade itself more fun, and makes this feat more than a 1/encounter slide if you hit with a particular power (which is pretty meh at epic).


I think there's plenty of room to make the "mind blade" into something better, for folks who don't care to use a 1d6 light blade (even an awesome one).  I'm not sure how to word it, but I think a second feat (or perhaps an alternative feat) that allows it to have the same stats as any other melee weapon would not be out of line, balance-wise.  Flavor is the only reason I would just leave it as-is.


*nod*, I made a stab at that.  What do you think of my attempt?

I know that this is all implement based, which may seem strange.  Dark Sun mentions it, and essentially says "it's not really a problem if you're using Inherent Bonuses".  I kind of agree, but I also expect folks who want this will pick up a Ki Focus.  Maybe let a feat (either an existing one - Mindblade - or a different one) grant implement proficiency with the ki focus.


You could also add text that says "you can use weapons as implements for mind blade theme powers".

Along those lines, here are a couple of other feats I'm considering offering around my table.

Steel Fist Warrior [Multiclass Monk]
Prerequisite: Dex 13
Benefit: You gain the Unarmed Combatant feature.  In addition, you can use monk implements.


The only problem here is brawling warriors.  A fair amount of work was put into making sure that brawling warriors have a crappy damage die on their fists.

Barring brawling warriors, a single feat requiring leather armor proficiency that grants both the monk unarmored ac boost and the weapon isn't out of line.

Strength from Within
Prerequisite: Any psionic class
Benefit: You can use the ki focus implement.  When you wear or hold your ki focus, you can add its enhancement bonus to the attack rolls and the damage rolls of weapon attacks you make using a weapon with which you have proficiency.



This isn't really needed, if we have the above mind blade, and we add the "can use weapons as implements when useing soulknife theme powers".

Thanks!  That's a ton of feedback.  I'll be working through it, and try to put something revised together, using a lot of the ideas.  I noticed, reading your response, that several powers were left... not-right during my rounds of writing-revising-losingthedocumenttoacomputercrash-writing-losingitagain-revising-finalizing.  Also, as I think you might have noticed... most of the utilities were tossed together, essentially, as placeholders.  Tongue out

A few things I can comment on quickly...

Melee / Ranged
The range issue was one thing I thought of, before posting, and then dismissed as "Meh, I'll get back to it later if people mention it."  Wink

But yes, I think the powers could all (essentially) be switched to "Melee touch or Ranged 10".

Psychic Blade Strike
I like it.  I was trying to parallel the Athasian Minstrel feature-power.  However, I like yours more.  I think I'll keep it.  Laughing  It might need to be toned down to "1d6 damage plus 1d8 psychic damage, and [effect]".

Level 2 Utility
Honestly, I think we need to lay out a theme for the utilities before we can really cement them in.  I... dislike "attack-roll-as-parry" mechanics, but it could work.  What about the utilities following a theme, more like... a stance, which can be ended to add an additional effect on a hit?  We can't make it key off of the mind blade as-a-weapon (because the feat is optional)... but it could key off of any Soulknife power or any hit with the mind blade as-a-weapon.  Or really we could just go the "any psionic power" route (though that would limit usefulness for non-psionic characters with the theme).

Blade Shard Volley
Oh, that one is just completely messed up.  It's the one that lost something from draft-to-draft.  You might noticed that, as written, the level 3 version was worse than the feature-power.  Embarassed 

How about something more like...

Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage.
    Level 13
        Attack: Make two attack rolls, and if either of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if both attack rolls hit.
    Level 23
        Attack: Make three attack rolls, and if any of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if two attack rolls hit, or 15 force and psychic damage if three attack rolls hit.

That may deal too much damage, and because of the multiple rolls, may be too accurate (it has three chance to at least hit).  Reducing the damage to 1d6/2d6/3d6 might work

Blade Wind
Hm.  It didn't strike me as that bad.  Though I can see how it might be.

What if it kept the current effects, but made them "until the end of the encounter" instead of end of next turn?  It might need to be switched to only "when an enemy starts its turn adjacent to you."

Damage could be just a flat 5/10/15, or 1d6 + primary ability (2d6 + at level 25, perhaps; or even 1d6 / 2d6 / 3d6).

Level 6 Utility
Yup.  Didn't have any idea.  Again, we should set a theme for utilities - that'll make putting them together a lot easier.

Embedded Blade
Switching to 2d6 + 2d8 could work, but I'd leave the vulnerable without a sustain of any kind.  And that's... a lot of damage for a level 7 encounter power.  2d6 + 1d8 would probably be better.

Knife to the Soul
I like the idea.  I'd switch up your formatting a bit, and I wouldn't put the aftereffect on (that does seem like going too far Tongue out), but I think it's completely doable.

Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes ongoing 5 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
Effect: 3d6 + ability modifier damage.
    Level 19
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
        Effect: 4d6 + ability modifier damage.
    Level 29
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is stunned (save ends both).
        Effect: 5d6 + ability modifier damage.

As the Blade Flies
I was going to go with that, but then I said "Eh... then I'd have to type moreTongue out  If we don't swap things around to make the utilities more unified, it's an easy keep.

Mind Blade Feat

I don't think it needs a "to create" action.  It can function like the Monk's feature - when you make an attack, you can just choose to use it.  Maybe should include a "free hand" requirement, though honestly I'd be fine even without that.

Including a Ki Focus therecould easily work... or it could be too much.

As for different weapon types... I'm not sure I'd include it in the original feat.  But I'm not sure how else I would do it.  If you don't have to create it (like the Monk Feature), it could just give some options.  I understand the interest in making it whatever weapon you want (or even just including a two-handed option), but I think we could make it work with something like:

[The Above Option] or [a one-handed heavy-blade for 1d8 damage]

It wouldn't let you match a Superior option out-of-the-gate.  A second feat could up it to [1d8 light blade] and [1d10 heavy blade].

Thought Seeking Strike

Hm.  The mind blade isn't required, so I'm not sure about including benefits for it in the other feats.  On the other hand, I could see that working.  I'm curious, though, whether stacking multiple qualities would make the blade too good.

Staggering Blade Strike

Heh, I think it needs something, but I think that may be too much.  Tongue out  What about the slide and slowed?  That's actually more than other theme-power-boosting feats give (even those affecting only a single power)...

Or it could add a slide to a hit with any soulknife theme power, which seems fair enough.

Implements

I'm curious how they're going to approach it officially, honestly.  When themes are introduced for other settings, where Inherent Bonuses aren't the default, they're going to have to deal with it.  I may just leave it as-is for now.

Steel Fist Warrior [Monk]

Yeah, Brawlers throw a monkey wrench in there.  Is upping the base unarmed damage to 1d8 (at the cost of a multiclass feat) really going to cause much of a disruption?  Maybe 6-8 damage, on some powers?  The proficiency bonus will be higher than Brawler-standard until level 11 (when the Brawler's proficiency bonus - which won't stack - will be higher than the monk unarmed strike's), but I'm not sure that's too terrible.

Strength From Within

Eh, it's included here, but it's not really intended to go with the Soulknife.  Just an option I'm (probably) giving to all psionic characters, so that the Psion doesn't necessarily have to carry around a stick or a ball to wave at people.

Aaaand, that was a lot more than I had originally planned on.  Oh well.  Good stuff!
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)

Psychic Blade Strike
I like it.  I was trying to parallel the Athasian Minstrel feature-power.  However, I like yours more.  I think I'll keep it.    It might need to be toned down to "1d6 damage plus 1d8 psychic damage, and [effect]".


You had 1d6 + ability + 5.

I'm going to use the Average Damage(+Crit amount) pattern.

Stats bonuses are going to be 4+L/6.

So your original version did 3.5+4+5+L/6 = 12.5 + L/6 (+2.5 on a crit)
Mine did 1d6+2d8 = 12.5 (+9.5 on a crit)

You'll notice that while 1d6 + 2d8 looks bigger than 1d6 + ability mod + 5, it actually isn't.  In fact, it is often lower.

I eliminated the ability mod because, well, the wording looks ugly.  And rolling dice is more fun than adding static amounts!

It also started the "theme" of 1d6 untyped, and 1d8 for psychic damage.

I also had damage scale instead of staying nearly static.  Adding a 1d6 per tier isn't increased damage, it is a joke.  Admittedly, maybe theme powers are supposed to scale only after feat investment?
Level 2 Utility
Honestly, I think we need to lay out a theme for the utilities before we can really cement them in.  I... dislike "attack-roll-as-parry" mechanics, but it could work.  What about the utilities following a theme, more like... a stance, which can be ended to add an additional effect on a hit?  We can't make it key off of the mind blade as-a-weapon (because the feat is optional)... but it could key off of any Soulknife power or any hit with the mind blade as-a-weapon.  Or really we could just go the "any psionic power" route (though that would limit usefulness for non-psionic characters with the theme).


Psychic damage?  Dunno.

Honestly, I sort of like the ones I brewed up in response to yours.  They are somewhat quirky, and they do something non-trivial, and they should be fun to use.


Blade Shard Volley
Oh, that one is just completely messed up.  It's the one that lost something from draft-to-draft.  You might noticed that, as written, the level 3 version was worse than the feature-power.   

How about something more like...

Hit: 2d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage.
    Level 13
        Attack: Make two attack rolls, and if either of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 3d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if both attack rolls hit.
    Level 23
        Attack: Make three attack rolls, and if any of them hit, resolve them as a single hit.
        Hit: 4d6 + ability modifier damage, and the target and each enemy adjacent to the target take 5 force and psychic damage, or 10 force and psychic damage if two attack rolls hit, or 15 force and psychic damage if three attack rolls hit.

That may deal too much damage, and because of the multiple rolls, may be too accurate (it has three chance to at least hit).  Reducing the damage to 1d6/2d6/3d6 might work



So a pseudo-AOE.  Not bad.  I still hold that the cool thing about the power should kick in as soon as possible (the multiple rolls).

Note that multiple rolls are about crit fishing, practically.

Assuming a 50% hit rate/5% crit rate, multiple roll/one hit powers get the following distribution:
(values are rounded)
2 rolls: 25% miss/45% 1 hit/20% 2 hit/5% 1 hit crit/5% 2 hit crit (10% total crits)

3 rolls: 13% miss/34% 1 hit/30% 2 hits/9% 3 hits/4% 1 hit crit/7% 2 hit crit/3% 3 hit crit (14% total crits)

4 rolls: 6% miss/23% 1 hit/30% 2 hits/18% 3 hits/4% 4 hits/3% 1 hit crit/6% 2 hit crit/7% 3 hit crit/3% 4 hit crit (19% total crits)

With a 10% crit rate, you get roughly double the number of crits.



Blade Wind
Hm.  It didn't strike me as that bad.  Though I can see how it might be.

What if it kept the current effects, but made them "until the end of the encounter" instead of end of next turn?  It might need to be switched to only "when an enemy starts its turn adjacent to you."

Damage could be just a flat 5/10/15, or 1d6 + primary ability (2d6 + at level 25, perhaps; or even 1d6 / 2d6 / 3d6).


I just like having fun powers I'd actually pick.  And one where you run around the battlefield in order to catch people in your blade wind just seems fun.

Embedded Blade
Switching to 2d6 + 2d8 could work, but I'd leave the vulnerable without a sustain of any kind.  And that's... a lot of damage for a level 7 encounter power.  2d6 + 1d8 would probably be better.


The sustain didn't arrive until epic.  Another 5 points of vulnerability is "meh", but sustain is kick-ass -- especially if you make the sustain a "maybe it sustains, maybe it doesn't".

Do an average damage calcuation.  Yours did 2d6+ability+5.  Mine did 2d6+2d8.  Guess what?  Yours did more damage, on average. 

I just wanted to get rid of the (compartively boring) +5 damage, and the (comparatively wordy) "plus your highest ability".  Instead, I turned it into dice.



Knife to the Soul
I like the idea.  I'd switch up your formatting a bit, and I wouldn't put the aftereffect on (that does seem like going too far ), but I think it's completely doable.

Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes ongoing 5 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
Effect: 3d6 + ability modifier damage.
    Level 19
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
        Effect: 4d6 + ability modifier damage.
    Level 29
        Hit: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage and is stunned (save ends both).
        Effect: 5d6 + ability modifier damage.


Why always insist on ability modifier damage?

Dailies I like to pick are ones where if you hit, you go "wee", and if you miss, you don't feel as if you might as well have attacked with an at-will.  This is a high standard.

At level 9, the effect of a miss is merely damage.  I thought dazed was too strong, so I said "cannot make OAs".  Now that I think about it, "grants combat advantage" might work better (for a striker especially).

The ongoing damage riders at end-paragon and end-epic are, well, about actually hurting the target.  You will often use these powers on solos and elites, who save quite quickly: the aftereffect damage at paragon means that your ongoing damage lasts more than 1 round.

At epic, we are competing with level 29 daily powers.  These things are nasty.  Having a dazed miss effect, or a dazed aftereffect, seemed reasonable, especially considering the anemic damage on the power.


Mind Blade Feat

I don't think it needs a "to create" action.  It can function like the Monk's feature - when you make an attack, you can just choose to use it.  Maybe should include a "free hand" requirement, though honestly I'd be fine even without that.

Including a Ki Focus therecould easily work... or it could be too much.

As for different weapon types... I'm not sure I'd include it in the original feat.  But I'm not sure how else I would do it.  If you don't have to create it (like the Monk Feature), it could just give some options.  I understand the interest in making it whatever weapon you want (or even just including a two-handed option), but I think we could make it work with something like:

[The Above Option] or [a one-handed heavy-blade for 1d8 damage]

It wouldn't let you match a Superior option out-of-the-gate.  A second feat could up it to [1d8 light blade] and [1d10 heavy blade].


Your light blade is a superior option.  +3 proficiency, 1d6 damage, thrown, offhand -- that is a drow long knife!

Having a weapon you call a mind blade is fluff.  Feats should grant real benefits.

Access to Ki Implement is required, or the mind blade is garbage -- having a 2nd feat to make it usable is a feat tax.  And even with Ki Implement access, using a ki implement with a mind blade is (once again) pretty much fluff, not a power boost.

So I made mind blades that where superior-esque in quality to match the light blade's superior quality.  That actually provides an advantage to burning the resources on the feat.  The fluff (able to use ki implements etc) is just there to support that advantage.

I gave it "counts as a dagger" to make rogues happy.

Thought Seeking Strike

Hm.  The mind blade isn't required, so I'm not sure about including benefits for it in the other feats.  On the other hand, I could see that working.  I'm curious, though, whether stacking multiple qualities would make the blade too good.



Light: +3 / 1d6, high crit, counts as a dagger, thrown, light blade

That is a nice weapon at paragon tier, but not broken.

Medium: +3/1d8, light blade/heavy blade, versatile, high crit.

Also a nice weapon.  It is a rapier that counts as a heavy blade, and has high crit.

Heavy: +2/1d10 brutal 2, axe/heavy blade, high crit, versatile

Compared with a waraxe with the paragon tier feat that makes axes high crit, this is a bit worse, but has the heavy blade property.

The power in question isn't much better than an at-will.  Even at epic levels after rolling all of those dice!  An epic level character using a waraxe with a 26 attack stat is doing 21 points of damage on average before adding in standard roll-and-hit mods.  The 3d6+4d8 power deals 3.5*6+4.5*4 = 28.5 before adding in standard roll-and-hit mods.

Thats a gap of 7.5 damage.  Puny.

Now lets take a 28 strength barbarian using howling strike with a mord:9+4d6 brutal 1+3d6 = 35.5 damage before stanard modifiers.

...

The second attack for a miss on one single encounter power is similarly not all that great.  You have to attack a different target (which means less focus fire), and in half of combats it does nothing -- when it does do something, it does at-will level damage to a secondary target!

Now, with both of these things (the upgraded mind blade and the encounter power upgrade), the feat becomes more tempting.  But it is far from charop material in power level.


Staggering Blade Strike

Heh, I think it needs something, but I think that may be too much.    What about the slide and slowed?  That's actually more than other theme-power-boosting feats give (even those affecting only a single power)...

Or it could add a slide to a hit with any soulknife theme power, which seems fair enough.


A slide of 3 rider with one encounter power is not even remotely worth a feat at epic.
A slide of 1 rider with one encounter power is not even remotely worth a feat at heroic.

Granting the feat kicker on a crit with mind blade attacks and soulknife theme powers makes it a feat that could apply more than once per encounter.

Even then, look at epic tier crit feats: create a 3d6 radiant auto-damage aura, apply vulnerability 10 to a host of targets, etc.  That is what you are competing against by epic tier.

Implements

I'm curious how they're going to approach it officially, honestly.  When themes are introduced for other settings, where Inherent Bonuses aren't the default, they're going to have to deal with it.  I may just leave it as-is for now.


They have leaked that Implement proficiencies will act like weapon proficiencies.  If you are proficient in an implement, you are proficient in that implement.

Steel Fist Warrior [Monk]

Yeah, Brawlers throw a monkey wrench in there.  Is upping the base unarmed damage to 1d8 (at the cost of a multiclass feat) really going to cause much of a disruption?  Maybe 6-8 damage, on some powers?  The proficiency bonus will be higher than Brawler-standard until level 11 (when the Brawler's proficiency bonus - which won't stack - will be higher than the monk unarmed strike's), but I'm not sure that's too terrible.


The Brawler was errataed.  It now gains an enhancement bonus to attacks, not a proficiency bonus.  (it was too simple to gain access to ki implements, and gain a +6 proficiency / +6 enhancement bonus)

So  now it is +6 enhancement.  You can pull off +3 proficiency with the feat you describe on top of that.

My problem is that it become a no-brainer feat, and all brawler warriors simply drop their weapons and stop using them and become multi-class monks.

I had a whole post, and the forums ate it!  Tongue out  (By "forums" I actually mean "my horribly unstable computer".)

Anywho, specific comentary aside, I've put together my revised stuff (including a few utility powers I like the effects of a bit more).  I'll post it into the first post (and update the thread) tomorrow morning.

I should note, though, that I'm definitely sticking with "theme" power levels, which appear to be below what might be optimal.  Some of the powers still strike me as borderline too strong, but I think that's a false perception at this point (mostly?).  Though all of this comentary is kind of pointless without me actually posting the stuff up.  Tongue out

Anywho - until morning. 
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Like I said last night: Updated.  Thoughts, folks?
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Taking a cue from some of the psionics discussion in Future Releases, here's a slightly different option:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Shape Mind Blade                Soulknife Feature
You focus your thoughts into a physical weapon.
At-Will ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Requirement: You must have a hand free.
Effect: You create a mind blade in one free hand.  When you create a mind blade, you can choose to form either a light mind blade or a heavy mind blade.
    The light mind blade is a one-handed light blade with the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, 1d6 damage, and a range of 5/10.
    The heavy mind blade is a one-handed heavy blade with the high crit and versatile properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, and 1d8 damage.
    You are proficient with your mind blade.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one.  The mind blade disappears if you are not touching it at the end of your turn.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

The idea would be to make the mind blade just a natural part of the theme itself.  I suppose the power could be adjusted to make it stand alone as the only theme power, but I feel like there's still plenty of space for another theme power (even the one I already included above as a feature) - this is mostly flavor (and, effectively, superior weapon options).

As-is, it again hits the "no way to enhance it" barrier.  Again, it is either left alone (I think the path Dark Sun themes take - though they rely upon the use of Inherent Bonuses), or implement proficiency with Ki Focus should just be granted (which would seem to be in line with the Escaped Slave theme's free skill training - though the shape mind blade power might already fit that conceptual/design space), OR (this is my favored direction at the moment) I just phrase the shape mind blade power in such a way as to make it so that you can use the enhancement, critical effects, properties, and powers of a ki focus you have attuned (even if you are not proficient with it as an implement - attuning ["equiping" or using] a ki focus is distinct from being able to use it as an implement it seems, although an attuned ki focus is normally useless if you can't use it as an implement).

Some obvious feats...
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Rapid Bladeshaper
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: You can use shape mind blade as a free action.

Morphous Blade [Revised]
Prerequisite:
Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: During a short or extended rest, choose one of the following weapon groups or weapon properties: axe, flail, hammer, heavy blade, light blade, pick, spear; brutal 1, defensive, heavy thrown, high crit, light thrown, off-hand, or reach.  When you use shape mind blade, your mind blade is created with the chosen group or property in addition to its normal group and properties.  You can choose a different option during any short or extended rest.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now, we could stick with Psychic Blade Strike as the "actual power" for the theme, or have a more unified "theme" for the encounter powers - go back to the old Psychic Strike idea.  That route, I would go with powers more like the escaped slave's feature-power, or the "Art of the Kill" multiclass-only powers (modifying/triggering other attacks - specifically those with the mind blade).

Meh.  I'm not sure how I feel about just using a "modifier" power for an encounter power.  So maybe just revise psychic blade strike into:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
You load your mind blade with psychic energy, for a little extra kick.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Standard Action        Melee or Ranged weapon
Requirement: You must be wielding a mind blade.
Target: One creature
Attack: Primary ability vs. AC
Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage plus 1d8 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2[W] + ability modifier damage plus 2d8 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3[W] + ability modifier damage plus 3d8 psychic damage.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Or to go with the "modifier" idea more, something like...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Psychic
Free Action
Trigger: You hit a target with an attack using your mind blade.
Effect: The target takes an additional 1d6 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2d6 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3d6 psychic damage.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Blah.  Anyways, it's late.  I sleep now.  More thoughts tomorrow, probably, and as always, I love feedback.
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Alright, I think I've got my wits about me better at this point.  At least now I feel like I have a theme in mind for the utility powers.

I like these a lot more (not sure about balance - they seem okay, if maybe a bit weak).

----------------------------------------------

Extended Blade            Soulknife Utility 2
You expand your mind blade, giving yourself extra reach or extra range.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn has its reach increased by 1 if it is a melee attack, or has its range increased by 5 if it is a ranged attack.

Duodimensional Blade    Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: Until the end of your next turn, whenever you make an attack with your mind blade against AC, you can choose to target Reflex instead.

Draining Blade            Soulknife Utility 10
You alter your mind blade into a conduit for draining psychic power.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: If you hit with the next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn, you can spend a healing surge, and you can also choose to either regain 1 power point or gain a +2 power bonus to all defenses until the end of your next turn.

----------------------------------------------

I feel like I either want all of them like the level 2 and 10 powers (encounter power, applies only to the next attack), and buffed up to fit that small of a window, or I want to make them fit more with the "until the end of your next turn" model.

If I reduce duodimensional blade to only the next attack with the blade, I want to buff it up a bit.  Maybe something more like...

Duodimensional Blade (v.1.5)    Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn can score a critical hit on a roll of 18-20.  In addition, if the attack targets AC, you can choose to target Reflex instead.

Actually, I think that "fits" better with the rest.

Thoughts?  If anyone hasn't noticed, I'm pushing forward with the "new direction", in part because of lack of feedback.  Wink



EDIT:

Another thing I'm thinking about - do I want to make the Soulknife a fully psionic Theme, like Noble Adept?  The Noble Adept's swap powers are augmentable at-will powers, but require you to spend the maximum power points on them for each use (so effectively they're just normal encounter powers, but usable in the same fashion as fully augmented psionic at-wills).  I'm considering redoing the encounter attack powers anyways (and the dailies, but they'd be unaffected by this), and it would essentially leave them exactly the same except for psionic classes that might be interested (Ardent, Battlemind - that's pretty much it).

If that's the case, I'll also tone down psychic strike, and make its "full damage" available with the expenditure of a power point, and give 1 PP with the other granted "feature" powers.

Like this...
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Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic
Free Action
Trigger: You hit a target with an attack using your mind blade.
Effect: The target takes an additional 1d6 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
    Level 11: 2d6 psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3d6 psychic damage.
    Augment 1
        Effect: The target takes an additional 1d8 psychic damage, and the target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.
            Level 11: 2d8 psychic damage.
            Level 21: 3d8 psychic damage.

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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
As a theme feature shouldn't the soulknife be compatible with any implement?
As a theme feature shouldn't the soulknife be compatible with any implement?



Eh, probably.  But one, it's been re-written to be a "weapon-based" theme (though that weapon in the mind blade, and the mind blade draws power from a ki focus).  EDIT: Actually, I've gone back through it - there's no mechanical reason to limit the powers to mind-blade only.  Though maybe a Battlemind with a Mordenkrad (2d6 brutal 1) will bust the level 3, 7 and 9 powers (Hm.  Looking at it, even knife to the soul doesn't look like it would be too broken without the mind blade limitation.  Could be a lot of damage, but... gamebreaking damage?  I'm not sure.)

Now the mind blade (and the ki focus that it rides on) can be used, or a character can just use another weapon (though it's not as thematically focused).  The mind blade remains a good Superior Weapon choice, though, and is the only way to benefit from most of the feats, and any of the utility powers.

So... good call!  Wink


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That said, I've posted again because I've fully updated the original post with the newly revised version of this theme.  It is now "complete", except for the standard paragon path(s).  Those should be easier to put together now that I actually know what this thing is supposed to look like.  Laughing
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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Finally put together a paragon path that I like.  The Mind Hunter is a paragon path that builds only from the theme (as opposed to including other classes).

Mind Hunter Paragon Path

Mind Hunter


"You may be careful and you may be quiet, but your thoughts are all I need to find you.  Though when I do find you, I plan to silence those too."

Prerequisite: Soulknife theme

A soulknife needs dedication and focus to truly master the craft.  Those who expand that focus to other ends can find their own psionic awareness heightened.  Some rare few have learned to hone their mental senses in addition to their blades.  They are able to sense a foe's thoughts, and through them locate their prey.  These experts are known as mind hunters, and for their enemies they are terrible to behold.  Most mind hunters are assassins, bounty hunters, or bodyguards - professions where their particular talents often prove indespensable.

As a mind hunter, you have tapped into a sense that many others cannot imagine.  You track your foes across the battlefield, even when you cannot see or hear them.  When you find them, you strike swiftly, bringing them down with a mix of deadly bladework and potent psychic assault.  Few are willing to face you in battle, but even fewer possess the skill required to escape you.

Mind Hunter Path Features


Mind Hunter Action (11th Level): When you spend an action point to make an attack using your mind blade, you gain a +1 bonus on the attack roll, and can use a free action attack power this turn, even if you have already done so.
Paragon Power Points (11th Level): You gain 2 additional power points.
Sense Thoughts (11th Level): You gain telepathy 5.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you roll twice and use either result.
Pinpoint Thoughts (16th Level): When you make an attack against a creature within 5 squares of you, you treat creatures with concealment as if they have no concealment, and you treat creatures with total concealment as if they have concealment.  In addition, when you make an active Perception check to locate a creature, you know its exact location if you beat the target's Stealth check by any amount.

Mind Hunter Disciplines


Humbling Bladestrike            Mind Hunter Attack 11
A sense of dread and self-doubt flows from your blade.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target is weakened until the end of your next turn.
    Augment 2
        Hit: 2[w] psychic damage, and until the end of your next turn the only attacks the target can make are basic attacks.

Irresistible Blade            Mind Hunter Utility 12
You imbue your blade with a surge of energy, allowing it to pierce any resistance.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action        Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn ignores all resistances.

Rend Thoughts                Mind Hunter Attack 20
Psychic energy allows your blade to slice through your foe's consciousness.
Encounter ♦ Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Standard Action        Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit a target with a weapon attack.
Target: The creature hit with the triggering attack.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: 2[W] psychic damage, and the target is knocked prone and is stunned (save ends).
    First Failed Save: The target is instead unconscious (save ends).  If the unconscious target takes any damage, it is no longer unconscious.
    Aftereffect: The target is dazed until the end of your next turn.
Miss: Half damage, and the target is dazed (save ends).


I'm mostly happy with it.  A few things are potentially wonky balance-wise, but I think they might fit well enough.
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Updated again.  The only change that I could forsee potentially making soon would be to either limit the [W] damage powers to mindblade only, or to simply shift all damage to set dice (d6 or d8), in order to limit minor-action-attack-with-a-massive-weapon abuse.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Ah. It's a theme. Interesting approach, rather than a full class.

I started designing one around the idea of spending a healing surge to do extra damage equal to that value. I ran the numbers, and it balanced well.

After I finish the Necromancer I'm working on I can maybe help you with this a bit if you so desire, but I wish you luck nontheless.
So, another [potential] revision of the powers.  This time I'm trying to go back to the "free action" style - but taking a page from Essentials.  Namely: the "free action attack" powers don't deal damage themself, if they hit, but instead increase the damage from the triggering attack.  This should avoid the problem of stacking static bonuses from multiple attacks, and be somewhat in line with the Essential Knight's power strike power - except that it will trade an additional effect for the requirement of its own attack roll.

They Look Something Like This:

Soulknife Powers
The following powers are available to any character who has chosen the soulknife theme.


Psychic Strike                Soulknife Feature
Your mind blade pulses with a sudden surge of psychic energy.
Encounter ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with an unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] extra psychic damage from the triggering attack.
    Level 11: 2[W] extra psychic damage.
    Level 21: 3[W] extra psychic damage.
    Augment 1
        Hit: The target takes 1[W] extra psychic damage from the triggering attack, and grants combat advantage to you until the end of your next turn.
            Level 11: 2[W] psychic damage.
            Level 21: 3[W] psychic damage.


Shape Mind Blade            Soulknife Feature
You focus your thoughts into a physical weapon.
At-Will ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Requirement: You must have a hand free.
Effect: You create a mind blade in one free hand.  When you create a mind blade, you can choose to form either a light mind blade or a heavy mind blade.
    The light mind blade is a one-handed light blade with the light thrown and off-hand weapon properties, a +3 proficiency bonus, 1d6 damage, and a range of 5/10.
    The heavy mind blade is a one-handed heavy blade with the versatile property, a +3 proficiency bonus, and 1d8 damage.
    You are proficient with your mind blade.  Your mind blade can't be turned into a magic weapon, but it can benefit from a magic ki focus if you have one (see below).  The mind blade disappears if you are not touching it at the end of your turn.
Special: If you are attuned to a ki focus you can use its enhancement bonus, critical, property, and powers with your mind blade.


Extended Blade            Soulknife Utility 2
You expand your mind blade, giving yourself extra reach or extra range.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn has its reach increased by 1 if it is a melee attack, or has its range increased by 5 if it is a ranged attack.


Disrupting Bladestrike            Soulknife Attack 3
Your blade surges with power, disrupting your foe's mind.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with an unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] extra psychic damage from the triggering attack and cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 13
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] extra psychic damage and the target takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls and cannot make opportunity attacks until the end of your next turn.
    Level 23
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] extra psychic damage, and the target takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls and is dazed until the end of your next turn.


Blade Wind                Soulknife Attack 5
Your psychic blade explodes into a swirling cloud of psionic shrapnel.
Encounter ♦ Force, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon, Zone
Standard Action        Close burst 1
Target: Each creature in burst
Attack: Primary ability vs. Reflex
Hit: 1[W] + ability modifier damage.
Effect: The burst creates a zone of swirling blade shards until the end of your next turn.  If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that starts its turn within the zone takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.
Special: The zone remains centered on you, even if you move.
Sustain Minor: The zone persists.
    Level 15
        Close burst 2
        Hit: 2[W] + ability modifier damage.
    Level 25
        Close burst 3
        Hit: 3[W] + ability modifier damage.
        Effect: If you are wielding a mind blade, any enemy that enters the zone or starts its turn there takes 1[W] force and psychic damage.


Duodimensional Blade        Soulknife Utility 6
You contract your mind blade into an impossibly thin blade capable of piercing through the toughest of armors.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: The next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn can target Reflex instead of AC.


Terrorizing Bladestrike        Soulknife Attack 3
Dark thoughts pour from your blade, poisoning your foe's mind with fear.
At-Will ♦ Augmentable, Fear, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with an unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Requirement: You must expend 2 power points each time you use this power.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] extra psychic damage from the triggering attack, and you push the target 3 squares.
    Level 17
        Requirement: You must expend 4 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 2[W] extra psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.
    Level 27
        Requirement: You must expend 6 power points each time you use this power.
        Hit: 3[W] extra psychic damage, you push the target 5 squares and knock it prone.  The target cannot stand up until the end of your next turn.


Knife to the Soul            Soulknife Attack 9
Your mind blade pulses with deadly energy, eating away at your foe's very essence.
Daily ♦ Necrotic, Psionic, Psychic, Weapon
Free Action            Melee or Ranged weapon
Trigger: You hit an enemy with an unaugmeted melee or ranged at-will attack using a mind blade.
Target: The enemy you hit.
Attack: Primary ability vs. Fortitude and Will
Hit: The target takes 1[W] extra psychic damage from the triggering attack.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
Miss: The target takes ongoing 5 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 19
        Hit: 2[W] extra psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 20 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
    Level 29
        Hit: 3[W] extra psychic damage.  If the attack hits only one defense, the target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).  If the attack hits both defenses, the target instead takes ongoing 20 necrotic and psychic damage and is dazed (save ends both).
            Aftereffect: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).
        Miss: The target takes ongoing 10 necrotic and psychic damage (save ends).


Draining Blade                Soulknife Utility 10
You alter your mind blade into a conduit for draining psychic power.
Encounter ♦ Psionic
Minor Action            Personal
Effect: If you hit with the next attack you make with your mind blade before the end of your next turn, you can spend a healing surge, and you can also choose to either regain 1 power point or gain a +2 power bonus to all defenses until the end of your next turn.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Meh, I'd prefer they be independent attacks, or utility type powers that boost your hit. Rolling a separate attack roll for what amounts to a buff annoys me.
I say, make 'em effect lines triggered on-hit.  Free action, but only one per turn.  Basically, like most Psionicists, turning your at-wills into encounter power equivalents... but hopefully yours scale!
I say, make 'em effect lines triggered on-hit.  Free action, but only one per turn.  Basically, like most Psionicists, turning your at-wills into encounter power equivalents... but hopefully yours scale!


That was a form it was taking at some point - and it would work better now that I'm adopting some of the Essentials style/language - but I think I'm going to stick with attacks, for a few reasons.

First, conceptually, I like the idea of the "psychic" part of these attacks being seperate from the blade parts of the attacks - you may be able to overcome the monster's physical defenses, but will you also be able to overcome its mental defenses?  They're conditional, but highly effective.

Second, I feel like I have a bit more room to work with in the "power" department with an attack roll attached.  Without it, I think I'd have to tone some things down a bit, closer to parity with the Essentials power strike.

Third, I can't think of a good way to phrase a "once per turn" limitation.  It would have to apply to all Soulknife theme powers, as well as paragon path powers.  It's a secondary concern, but still, it feels like it would be messy.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
...Actually, I think the new ruling on free action attacks might cover that.  Add "Special:  This power can only be used on your turn"?
I like what I see here, as I was playing a 3rd edition soulknife . . . then soulbow back in the day.  Nothing really has come close to getting back to that feel until I read through your theme.  

Now to figure out how to get it into Character builder in some manner . . .

Great work !!! 
I like this very cool, and a great option for a Monk. Speaking of monks they are screwed by the encounter power that needs 2 power points. I know this is mainly for the other psionic classes, but its something that bugs me. Anyway this is awesome and if you haven't sent it into wizards you should.
I like this very cool, and a great option for a Monk. Speaking of monks they are screwed by the encounter power that needs 2 power points. I know this is mainly for the other psionic classes, but its something that bugs me.


Actually, Monk is one of my ideal "Soulknife" class choices.

Check the full Building a Soulknife section again.  The Power Points section describes how even non-power point classes pick up power points when they swap out a "normal" encounter power for an augmentable at-will (basically, you get enough points to use the power once).


Anyway this is awesome and if you haven't sent it into wizards you should.


I should.  Perhaps I will.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
First off, the Shape Mind Blade gives you the equivalent of a longsword (a martial weapon) and (if we treat the heavy thrown property as being more or less equivalent to the light thrown property) a drow long knife (a superior weapon).  This strikes me as being off-balance.  However, the 3.0 version of the Shape Mind Blade feature gave the heavy mind blade the High Crit property and based on a comparison by Upho (I can provide a link if necessary), I believe that to be the equivalent of a superior one-handed weapon, just like the light mind blade is.  

Secondly, I see this more as being the fault of WotC for not creating something along the lines of a "Ranged Training" feat (you know, something for Bow-Bards and Artificers to use to do something besides twiddle their thumbs when their Warlord ally tells them to shoot).  Still, until such a feat exists, I would recommend letting the light mind blade use the PC's highest ability score for Ranged Basic Attack rolls, rather than strictly Dexterity (since not everyone who might want the Soulknife theme will have Dexterity as an attack stat).

(Before I go on to the last suggestion, I must ask if you are under the impression that having a Psionic theme counts as having a Psionic class.  If that is the case, then you may be addressing my last suggestion with your Strength from Within feat.  I mean, I wasn't under that impression, but if that's how it works, then ignore the last point.)

Thirdly, the 3.5 Soulknife had an enhancement bonus to his Mind Blade by virtue of the class, independent of any gold spent towards the effort.  Based on that and the fact that not everyone who wants to use the Soulknife theme will be using a Ki Focus, I recommend having some method of applying an enhancement bonus to the Mind Blade.  Possibly something along the lines of the Claw Fighter feat or the Battlefist of the Self-Forged paragon path in the Eberron Player's Guide.
I've finally figured out how to put in a sig. Yes, I'm including this here for no other reason than to express how happy I am that I could finally do this. For goodness' sake, change these forums back (or just change, I don't care).
First off, the Shape Mind Blade gives you the equivalent of a longsword (a martial weapon) and (if we treat the heavy thrown property as being more or less equivalent to the light thrown property) a drow long knife (a superior weapon).  This strikes me as being off-balance.  However, the 3.0 version of the Shape Mind Blade feature gave the heavy mind blade the High Crit property and based on a comparison by Upho (I can provide a link if necessary), I believe that to be the equivalent of a superior one-handed weapon, just like the light mind blade is.


Yeah, I'm still just not completely sure on the mind blade's stats.  On one hand, I want them both to have room to improve (to need a feat to be as goos as superior weapons), but on the other, I want them to at least be as good as military weapons.

The problem is that the Dagger (+3, 1d4, thrown 5/10) is a Simple weapon, but the Longknife (+3, 1d6, thrown 5/10) is a Superior weapon.  There hasn't been any "middle ground" left.

So, yeah, I think I'm willing to pretend that Light Thrown is "worth less" than Heavy Thrown, in order to make room for the weapon, and to leave them as "military weapon" equivalents.

Secondly, I see this more as being the fault of WotC for not creating something along the lines of a "Ranged Training" feat (you know, something for Bow-Bards and Artificers to use to do something besides twiddle their thumbs when their Warlord ally tells them to shoot).  Still, until such a feat exists, I would recommend letting the light mind blade use the PC's highest ability score for Ranged Basic Attack rolls, rather than strictly Dexterity (since not everyone who might want the Soulknife theme will have Dexterity as an attack stat).


Well, the powers can trigger off of basic attack, or any other at-will attacks.  So as long as those characters (Artificers and Bards) have a ranged at-will attack power, they can still fully use all of the Soulknife powers.

(Before I go on to the last suggestion, I must ask if you are under the impression that having a Psionic theme counts as having a Psionic class.  If that is the case, then you may be addressing my last suggestion with your Strength from Within feat.  I mean, I wasn't under that impression, but if that's how it works, then ignore the last point.)


I was (incorrectly, I see) under that impression.  However, the Strength from Within feat is more of a general option I had laying around - it isn't necessary to gain the benefit of the Ki Focus with your mind blade.  The shape mind blade power itself includes that feature in its Special clause.

Thirdly, the 3.5 Soulknife had an enhancement bonus to his Mind Blade by virtue of the class, independent of any gold spent towards the effort.  Based on that and the fact that not everyone who wants to use the Soulknife theme will be using a Ki Focus, I recommend having some method of applying an enhancement bonus to the Mind Blade.  Possibly something along the lines of the Claw Fighter feat or the Battlefist of the Self-Forged paragon path in the Eberron Player's Guide.


Well, the shape mind blade power basically gives you a limited version of proficiency with a Ki Focus - allowing it to apply to your mind blade, even if you can't otherwise use it as an implement (anyone can attune a ki focus).

Allowing one to just enchant the mind blade directly is an option, but I'm reluctant for two reasons.  First, it's messier to put into the power itself.  Second, it's no less limiting than allowing the character to use a ki focus for their weapon.  By which I mean: either way you'll have to put resources into the mind blade that are unusable elsewhere.

Really though, I'd rather leave it as-is, in parity with the Monk's unarmed strike.  Inherent Bonuses and boobs/blessings/trainings are a good option for those players who really don't want to have to use an item.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Also: Updated, as last discussed.  Version 5.0 uses free-action powers, triggering off of a successful (unaugmented) at-will or basic attack using the mind blade.  Yes, it is built with the current free-action-attack limit (1/turn) in mind.  If the rule is changed at a later date, this theme will have to be revised (likely hardcoding the 1/turn limit back in to the powers themselves, as I've previously discussed).

At this point, this has really gotten to the point where it matches my vision for it.  If anyone uses it, let me know!  I'd love some practical, in-game, playtest and feedback.
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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
It all looks well and good except...

The level 9 daily power, Knife to the Soul, lacks an action type. I am pretty sure that it is a free action but this is not stated in the power itself.
It all looks well and good except...

The level 9 daily power, Knife to the Soul, lacks an action type. I am pretty sure that it is a free action but this is not stated in the power itself.


Ha!  And a range, too.  Copy-paste errors for the win!

Also: Fixed.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
I would make Rapid Bladeshaper more closely resemble Quick Draw (shaping as part of an attack action) for those corner cases where you might not have a blade shaped but do get to make an attack, without the opportunity to insert a free action first.
I would make Rapid Bladeshaper more closely resemble Quick Draw (shaping as part of an attack action) for those corner cases where you might not have a blade shaped but do get to make an attack, without the opportunity to insert a free action first.


Hm.  I thought being able to use it as a free action (not limited to your-turn-only) effectively did that - I think I must have gotten that idea from the Load Free property, or the Thri-kreen's 1/turn free draw/stow.  But I can see how it might help to be completely clear with it.

Maybe I'll just add it on there, so that (in another corner case) when you need to draw it, but not attack with it, you can still do so as a free action.

So...

Rapid Bladeshaper
Prerequisite: Soulknife theme, shape mind blade power
Benefit: You can use shape mind blade as a free action, or as part of the same action used to attack with the mind blade.

That seems to cover it, and be simple enough.  Good call.

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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
I'm a bit annoyed that the monk and assassin are the only classes that can use this.

 
I'm a bit annoyed that the monk and assassin are the only classes that can use this.

 



Any class can use this.  You specifically don't need to be proficient with the Ki Focus as an Implement to attune to it (per the Ki Focus rules).  So, a non-assassin/non-monk character can pick up a ki focus for use with the mind blade.

Alternatively, I'm considering allowing the mind blade to benefit from any implement like the new "Hexblade" Warlock (use its bonuses, properties, and powers).  Or potentially even a weapon.
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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
This... is a good idea. It makes me wonder what other classes of old could be interpreted as themes.

(I don't wanna raise your hackles, 'cause I think I've read your opinion on the subject, but maybe the hexblade could have been a theme...)
This... is a good idea. It makes me wonder what other classes of old could be interpreted as themes.


I really want to put together an Archivist theme.  It was one of my favorite 3.5 classes for some reason, and I feel like it would easily fit with several 4th edition classes (Bard, Cleric, Invoker, Wizard - maybe even Psion), so a theme just feels appropriate to me.

Now that this seems pretty much complete, I think I might just start working on that.

(I don't wanna raise your hackles, 'cause I think I've read your opinion on the subject, but maybe the hexblade could have been a theme...)


Haha. 

Which Hexblade do you mean?  The 3.5 "Fighter+[A few]Spells+Curse-and-Un-Luck" version, or the 4th edition "Warlock-Curse+Weapon" version?  (Most of my "hackles being raised" comes from the two being not similar, for no apparent reason.)

Hm.  Actually, now that you've mentioned it, that would work well - at least if we're talking about the 3.5 Hexblade.  Its defining feature was the curse... but that's about it.  I could easily see a Hexblade built using the Fighter, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, or even Warlord class in 4th edition - and that's just using the PH1 classes. 

Wow, yeah, thinking about it, that's an excellent idea.  Good call!  I almost want to put that together more than the Archivist now.
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
"Which Hexblade do you mean?"

It really would depend on how you decide to define the theme's primary attributes, I suppose. I kind of like the idea of a melee-delivered-curse being the main feature, which could be taken as a call back to the original. The hex could also fall somewhere between a defender-ish mark and a striker-ish quarry/curse.

I think the key is that, as you suggest, the curse was kind of the hexblade's main schtick. As with the soulknife's soul knife, it's the kind of thing that seems gimmicky to build a whole class around, but as a modular element works quite nicely with a range of characters along the martial<-->arcane spectrum.

Fun to contemplate, innit? ;)
I like the idea of re-doing old classes as themes.
Samurai, Swashbuckler, Spellthief, Lurk, and such from 3.5 had cool mechanics but were not really broad enough for a whole 4e class.

In order to use a Ki implement on your mind-blade it says you have to be attuned to it. Last I checked you had to be able to use an implement to attune to it. (Implements should really be proficiencies like weapons, it'd be so much simpler)
I'm wondering now if Incarnum, that weird blue stepchild of late 3.5 (and one of my favorites), would be better as a theme than a series of classes.

(Sorry, greatfrito-- I didn't set out to derail this thread!) 
I like the idea of re-doing old classes as themes.
Samurai, Swashbuckler, Spellthief, Lurk, and such from 3.5 had cool mechanics but were not really broad enough for a whole 4e class.


Ha!  Good list.  Samurai and Swashbuckler are obvious ones, but I may add Spellthief to my list(s).

In order to use a Ki implement on your mind-blade it says you have to be attuned to it. Last I checked you had to be able to use an implement to attune to it. (Implements should really be proficiencies like weapons, it'd be so much simpler)


I believe implements are (or soon will be) treated like proficiencies now - if you can use an implement, you can use it with any implement power.

And as per PH3, p.203, ki focus "attunement" and implement use ("proficiency") are different things.  You can "attune" a ki focus, even if you can't use it as an implement, just like you can hold a wand/staff/rod or wear a symbol/totem, even if you can't use it as an implement.
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Oh Ok then, I guess that makes sense.

What if a Swordmage takes this theme? If he uses his Ki-focus on his mindblade, and has it shaped into a shortsword for example, can he then use his mindblade as an implement for his non-weapon swordmage powers?
Oh Ok then, I guess that makes sense.

What if a Swordmage takes this theme? If he uses his Ki-focus on his mindblade, and has it shaped into a shortsword for example, can he then use his mindblade as an implement for his non-weapon swordmage powers?



He doesn't need a ki focus for that, unless he's not in a world with Inherent Enhancement Bonus active. Innocent
Yeah, I'm still just not completely sure on the mind blade's stats.  On one hand, I want them both to have room to improve (to need a feat to be as goos as superior weapons), but on the other, I want them to at least be as good as military weapons.

The problem is that the Dagger (+3, 1d4, thrown 5/10) is a Simple weapon, but the Longknife (+3, 1d6, thrown 5/10) is a Superior weapon.  There hasn't been any "middle ground" left.

So, yeah, I think I'm willing to pretend that Light Thrown is "worth less" than Heavy Thrown, in order to make room for the weapon, and to leave them as "military weapon" equivalents.



Actually, the Dagger is the equivalent of a Military weapon anyway (compared to the Short Sword, damage goes down, but Light Thrown gets added), but I surmise it got assigned to the Simple category so that this iconic weapon could still be used by anyone who is otherwise only supposed to be proficient with Simple weapons without being too wordy.

I.e., it's easier to assign the Military-equivalent Dagger to the Simple category and say "Weapon Proficiencies: All Simple melee" than to leave the Dagger Military and have to say "Weapon Proficiencies: All Simple melee and Daggers".

So I've got to disagree.  The only difference between Light Thrown and Heavy Thrown is the stat that gets applied, and (the recent change to Melee Training notwithstanding) 4E tries to treat stat mods to attack rolls the same.  I.e., the Drow Longknife is a Superior weapon and it's supposed to be (it's a Short Sword plus, strictly better than a Military weapon), and which specific attack stat the Thrown property uses is immaterial (it's got to use one, anyway, right?).

I REALLY recommend putting the High Crit property (or something of similar worth, such as Defensive) back on the heavier mind blade (or bump something down off of the lighter mind blade, reduce the damage die, drop the proficiency, or just take away the Thrown property, anyway).  

Well, the powers can trigger off of basic attack, or any other at-will attacks.  So as long as those characters (Artificers and Bards) have a ranged at-will attack power, they can still fully use all of the Soulknife powers.



Yes, the Psychic Strike feature power and the other Soulknife theme powers can trigger off of those other powers, but I'm not talking about that.  The existence of Light Thrown allows you to use the Mind Blade in the Ranged Basic Attack power.  Except it only works with Dexterity so classes that don't use Dexterity won't actually have this power (or at least, the capacity to use the RBA with the Mind Blade, anyway).

I.e., a character who takes this theme automatically gets the Shape Mind Blade power, the Psychic Strike power, and then flip a coin to see if the Ranged Basic Attack (Mind Blade) power that he gets from the Light Thrown property is actually worth anything.

I was (incorrectly, I see) under that impression.  However, the Strength from Within feat is more of a general option I had laying around - it isn't necessary to gain the benefit of the Ki Focus with your mind blade.  The shape mind blade power itself includes that feature in its Special clause.



I know they're as accurate and official as a coin flip, but I'd still ask CustServ about whether proficiency in a Ki Focus is necessary to attune to it, even if the wording doesn't address it specifically.  

I mean, if attuning to a Ki Focus didn't require proficiency, don't you think that the Essentials Assassin wouldn't have bothered listing the Ki Focus as an Implement they're proficient in?  From what we've seen from the playtest, the "Essassin" doesn't make Implement attacks and isn't going to (typed from memory, so I'm not sure, but isn't the Essassin's powers just Martial weapon attacks, Shadow utilities, and Poisons that he can make 1/day?).  Furthermore, at high levels, the Essassin will have several At-Will attacks available to him that require him to be using a specific weapon to use (one's only for Shuriken, another only works for Garrotes, this one is Unarmed Strike only, etc.).  He can't afford four or five different +6 weapon enhancements, and he can't be expected to be viable only in an Inherent-bonus-in-place-of-Enhancement campaign, so he has to have the Ki Focus available to use for that purpose.  Except if he's never making an Implement attack with it, then why would he need to be "fully proficient" in the Ki Focus when anyone can attune to one?

Although, I'd actually ask about both, because maybe taking a Psionic (or whatever) theme IS supposed to qualify you as meeting the prerequisite "Any Psionic (or whatever) class".

Well, the shape mind blade power basically gives you a limited version of proficiency with a Ki Focus - allowing it to apply to your mind blade, even if you can't otherwise use it as an implement (anyone can attune a ki focus).

Allowing one to just enchant the mind blade directly is an option, but I'm reluctant for two reasons.  First, it's messier to put into the power itself.  Second, it's no less limiting than allowing the character to use a ki focus for their weapon.  By which I mean: either way you'll have to put resources into the mind blade that are unusable elsewhere.

Really though, I'd rather leave it as-is, in parity with the Monk's unarmed strike.  Inherent Bonuses and boobs/blessings/trainings are a good option for those players who really don't want to have to use an item.



I agree that it would be messy to put in a power, but then, putting the details for the Noble Adept's power points usage would be messy to put in a power (and you'll notice they didn't do that, they wrote it out separately).  

But what I meant was that even if you don't go with the equivalent of the Claw Fighter feat, that you could still just spell out an automatic bonus (like a racial power or the Brawling Fighter's auto-bonus to unarmed strike).  Something like "At 5th level, your Mind Blade gains a +1 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls.  This bonus increases by 1 every five levels.  You also gain an extra d6 damage die per plus on critical hits".  

Not dependent on any item and not dependent on the DM using an Inherent-bonus system, but an automatic enhancement progression on the mind blade itself.

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Weapon Stats
Alright, y'know, I'll put high-crit on it.  You've worn me down.  Tongue out  Also, I may have had it with high-crit on the actual document I use at home, uh... the whole time.  What it came down to for me is: high-crit isn't super-impressive on a d8 weapon... but that's kinda been my justification for 1d6 on a thrown light blade, too.

Basic Attacks
I'm really not at all concerned about that.  The game at large should deal with it, yes (I know I'll be adding a feat similar to Melee Weapon Training with my Firearms article), but I'm not going to make a special point of it here.

Ki Focus
Wait, why would the Assassin not list the implement proficiency?  The point was: you can attune a ki focus, but without proficiency you don't get anything for it.  So yeah, the assassin has to list proficiency, or he's not going to get any benefit from using a ki focus (such as being able to use the bonuses with any weapons - that's a "proficient with ki focus" specific benefit).  I think you should re-read the ki focus section of PH3.

As for the themes-meeting-requirements bit, yeah, I think that is a good question.  Personally I think they don't - but they should, really.

Scaling Bonus
Yeah, I'm not too worried about it.  If you want scaling bonuses, use Inherent Bonuses.  Heck, it makes all themes work better (and is actually suggested for use with themes in the Dark Sun book).
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Basic Attacks
I'm really not at all concerned about that.  The game at large should deal with it, yes (I know I'll be adding a feat similar to Melee Weapon Training with my Firearms article), but I'm not going to make a special point of it here.



Actually, (and I realize this isn't exactly the right thread for it) I'd recommend putting them all into one feat.  What I do is nix Melee Training, and instead use a homebrew feat called Exotic Training.  Its benefit is that you can apply an ability score modifier of your choice to attack rolls (and if applicable, damage rolls) for the Melee Basic Attack, Ranged Basic Attack, the Grab Action (since its biggest selling point is that it's available to anyone, except that not having Strength as an attack stat means that it's really not) and the Bull Rush Action (see last).

At the very least, those actions need Melee Training equivalent feats of their own, and since we're looking at such a large disparity (Bards and so forth need four feats just to use combat actions that are theoretically there for them to use anyway), it might as well be a single feat.

Ki Focus
Wait, why would the Assassin not list the implement proficiency?  The point was: you can attune a ki focus, but without proficiency you don't get anything for it.  So yeah, the assassin has to list proficiency, or he's not going to get any benefit from using a ki focus (such as being able to use the bonuses with any weapons - that's a "proficient with ki focus" specific benefit).  I think you should re-read the ki focus section of PH3.



I might have misunderstood you.

My impression: you were saying that you must be actually proficient with the ki focus to gain all the benefits (use special properties if superior implement, use bonuses for implement attacks, use magic enhancement effects, etc.).  You were also saying that a Soulknife-themed character is able to attune to a ki focus, even without being proficient with it, and therefore can gain the enhancement bonus even if he isn't able to gain the other stuff.

I took this to mean that you thought anyone (including the Essassin) could attune to a Ki Focus even if nonproficient and gain the enhancement bonuses.

...

So are you actually saying that the Soulknife specifically allows you to take an enchanted Ki Focus, attune to it, apply the enhancement bonus to attack rolls, etc. with weapon attacks, and that's it?  That this is a unique exception to the normal functioning of the Ki Focus?

I.e., I can take a non-Monk-or-Assassin character (and thus not proficient with the Ki Focus), take the Soulknife theme, not take any MC feats that grant me proficiency in the Ki Focus, find an enchanted Ki Focus (that I'm not proficient in), and (solely through the Soulknife's Shape Mind Blade power) attune to it and gain the enhancement bonus to your Mind Blade's attacks, etc.  Is that correct (not trying to be obtuse, but I'm just not quite seeing how this is supposed to work)?
I've finally figured out how to put in a sig. Yes, I'm including this here for no other reason than to express how happy I am that I could finally do this. For goodness' sake, change these forums back (or just change, I don't care).
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