Why don't people like Psionics

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So I've been playing for a while now and I've notice when you tell people your a Psionics they don't really like rping with you
I'm not sure what you're actually asking.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
The Psionics part or the not liking Psionics part?
Ah, okay, I misread the thread title.  I transposed two words and thought you were making a statement (Why people don't like psionics).  My apologies for that.

As far as why someone doesn't like psionics, well, you'd have to ask them.  There will likely be as many different answers as there are people.  Some people think they're 'science fictiony', some don't like them mechanically, some have had bad experiences from how messed up they were in previous editions, some think you're going to start randomly reading and controlling the minds of the party because you can ...

So, yeah, you'll have to ask the person or people who's giving you the RP brushoff.  I've never observed this phenomenon, myself, and I've played a fair number of psionic characters over the years.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
Salla brought up my main dislike for them.

It's really just mechanics. In older editions, the fact that the psionic rules always seemed very fiddly and open to rampant and unchecked abuse through the medium of psionic points gave me an aversion for them. When 4e popped them out, I had high hopes, actually, because I felt like the AEDU format was the perfect way to make psionics balanced and mechanically sound, taking out the variable point investment thing and just making it another power source. The reintroduction of the power points just made it another thing that I doubt I'll ever use, since I don't want to mess with them.
So many PCs, so little time...
I've never witnessed this phenomenon in 4e. In previous editions, absolutely. Psionics were wonky, and the fact that they usually came straight out of their own book usually lead to that book simply being disallowed at many tables.

In 4e, however, despite the still-present window for abuse that psionics do have, I haven't seen them abused, and I absolutely love the psionic we have in our party.

Of course, she's insane, and that helps. 

"Not only are you wrong, but I even created an Excel spreadsheet to show you how wrong you are." --James Wyatt, May 2006

Dilige, et quod vis fac

Ahh it's making more sense o me see my character is a soulknife basically I make a sword out of my thoughts (it's not a free action until like level 4) so really the only special thing about this type is that I don't have to buy swords often icant get into others minds or anything but Ive tried to join games and be turned down because people are stuck in their old experiences with Psionics
The name "psionics" brings up the horrid science-fiction-y and broken AD&D rules for it.

However, in 4E, the power source is just fine. To avoid my ancient history of dislike for it, I prefer to think of psionic powers in similar terms to Rolemaster's "Mentalism" - it's magic accessed through self-discipline and mental focus, or perhaps through emotional state - but otherwise it's still magic.

I've not seen a problem with power points, although I understand that at Epic levels, actually the power design can work the wrong way round (you are better off continuously augmenting low level abilites than using the high level ones).

I've always been indifferent towards them.


The big two reasons I get that I feel like hold any water are



  1. They are basically the exact same as arcane or divine magic, but with totally different mechanics for no reason. Just play something arcane/divine and play up the mental aspects.

  2. The unique system for using them is always dumb. 


This goes for any edition.

"In a way, you are worse than Krusk"                               " As usual, Krusk comments with assuredness, but lacks the clarity and awareness of what he's talking about"

"Can't say enough how much I agree with Krusk"        "Wow, thank you very much"

"Your advice is the worst"


 



  1. They are basically the exact same as arcane or divine magic, but with totally different mechanics for no reason. Just play something arcane/divine and play up the mental aspects.




but they are not the same and have diffrent mechanics, this seems to contradict itself, 

i like them to a point, more or less powerpoints are glorified encounter powers,

in 4e the mechanical issue here is that psionic at wills at low level augmented fully are better then there high level counterparts 

issues with psionic mechanics


EXIBIT A: the psion's dishearten.

unaugmented its a burst 1 within 10 that slaps on a -2 penalty to attacks

augmented 2 its a burst 1 within 10 that slaps on a penalty to attacks equal to your charisma modifier

ok this is fine, since probably your CHA at level 1 is no higher then 16 but it becomes an issue later on for 2 reasons. 1 your charisma goes up because you need to invest at every opportunity. 2. you gain powerpoints as you level.

now at level 7 you have 6 power points, and you can just spam this power fully augmented, by which point your CHA is around 18-20 and you putting penalties on monsters that more or less, take them out of the game since they cant hit defenders. 

exibit B brutal barrage

also there is stuff like the battlemind's brutal barrage level 13

all you need to do is stack passive damage boosters onto it and this power becomes more powerful then strikers could hope for with 

frost fury weapon + lasting frost + wintertouched + augment 4

makes this power deal a static 88 damage, and 4 chances to crit and deal additional crit dice. 



TLDR: there are powers that are easily exploited still and the lower level at wills fully augmented are really powerful and can be spammed well into epic.

so alot of the time you will be looked as a power gamer because you chose psionic, and they assume power gamers do not roleplay.
I like psionics in 3.5, any problems that might (as they're not assured to) arise from them can easily be solved by your DM.
Some of the people in my party are wary of my Psion, but, through role-played events, I've managed to ease the worries.

Relating to this topic, I've only played a Psion, so my experiences regarding psionic characters is rather limited.

However, I thoroughly enjoy playing a Psion.  The lack of armor or visible weapons allows me to portray myself as the first-born son of a noble merchant family, and a high Charisma allows me to pass off this deceit without too much difficulty.

For all intents and purposes, I am the party's speaker.  In battle, I hang back and offer reassuring comments to my companions, or I offer advice (which is given in character).  To the enemy, I'm not very threatening; I don't make dramatic gestures or mumble incoherent words when I use an attack power, so I appear to be what I say I am: a noble merchant who travels with adventurers while searching for rare and exotic imports for the family business.

Overall, no one has had an actual complaint about my Psion's actions, and the party has come to rely upon my speaking skills, clever words, and quick wit.
Ahh it's making more sense o me see my character is a soulknife basically I make a sword out of my thoughts (it's not a free action until like level 4) so really the only special thing about this type is that I don't have to buy swords often icant get into others minds or anything but Ive tried to join games and be turned down because people are stuck in their old experiences with Psionics



I assume you are playing 3.5?

A lot of stuff in 3.X walks a razor thin line between worthless and broken. I imagine many psionics classes ran into that problem as well.

Also, making a sword with your mind feels a lot like a jedi.

Now if you'll excuse me, my druid will be over here working on his wand of Flame Blade, because that's totally not the same thing at all, you see. 

"Not only are you wrong, but I even created an Excel spreadsheet to show you how wrong you are." --James Wyatt, May 2006

Dilige, et quod vis fac

Now if you'll excuse me, my druid will be over here working on his wand of Flame Blade, because that's totally not the same thing at all, you see. 



Until the Soulknife works on a Dorje that makes his Mind Blade fire element, then it is XD
The only thing I don't like about Psionics is how their At-wills and encounters are setup. You have two at-wills that can be augmented however you want but you can't swap out one for an encounter power with out being really lacking in abilites. Maybe that changes when you level up but it still tics me off, since I can't use my Paragon Paths and Themes to the way I want to.

Otherwise I like Psionics. 
Ant Farm
Ok so I'm starting to understand basically to prevent Psionics from being too overpowered just ask them out of game to just be considerate and dont break the game or as the dm to set limitations on spamming and about the sci-fi feel this kinda brings me to question some monsters like Druids summoning t-rex's or (idk what these are called) the robotic like people I've seen them on d&d online any magic really Is sci-fi and there are alt of magic classes
Ok so I'm starting to understand basically to prevent Psionics from being too overpowered just ask them out of game to just be considerate and dont break the game or as the dm to set limitations on spamming and about the sci-fi feel this kinda brings me to question some monsters like Druids summoning t-rex's or (idk what these are called) the robotic like people I've seen them on d&d online any magic really Is sci-fi and there are alt of magic classes



Please, grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure.  It will be easier to help you if you make yourself easier to understand.

Psionics is less broken than spellcasting in 3e (especially the soulknife, which is an almost painfully weak class), but it's still quite potent.

Psionics feeling 'sci-fi' is an individual thing.  I personally think psionics feels more like magic than magic because it's internal, whereas wizards tool over formulas and books, studying the material rather than feeling it and meditating over it.  In other words, wizardry is more like science, whereas psionics is more mystical.
I'm sorry about my poor grammar and sentence structure. I'm terrible at writing in general, a miracle I graduated.
But my soulknife isn't weak I plan out my character in advance, he started as a paladin, then multiclassed to a soulknife, then to a dragonfire adept. He's quite powerful.
(idk what these are called) the robotic like people I've seen them on d&d online any magic really Is sci-fi and there are alt of magic classes



Warforged. Sentiant golems. They were created for the game world called Eberron which if I recall is where D&D online is. 



That's the biggest obstacle people can't seem to get over. They're not robots at all, they're constructs.
Haters gonna hate.
That's pretty much it.

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Conceptually, I have no problem with psionics. In fact I think they offer a lot of great flavor. I once played in a 3.5 all-psionics game that remains one of the best gaming experiences I've ever had.

I also loved 3.0 and 3.5 psionic mechanics. Largely because I was deeply unhappy with the 3e magic and spell memorization system and the notion that you had to prepare your spells ahead of time. Since you rarely knew what you'd be up against, most people memorized a few broadly applicable combat spells every day, and nearly never memorized more specialized spells. Psionics seemed to solve that problem neatly. Anything you needed to cast, you simply cast on the spot, so long as you had sufficient power points and you had access to the power in question.

But in 4e, I'm not a fan of the psionic mechanics. Since the whole memorization system was scrapped and all the classes were given a very similar mechanic, I no longer saw a reason to avoid playing a wizard, nor did I see the benefit of playing a psion. In fact, because the 4e psionic classes have their encounter attack abilities tied to their at-will power choices, it actually seems more restrictive than the mechanics of the normal classes. And so I don't see that 4e psionics are solving a problem like they were in 3e, instead I see them as limiting the number of choices I can make for my character. 

Monks are excepted. Despite being "psionic", I'm a big fan of the 4e monk as they get a very different set of mechanics which is really fun. Since every at-will and encounter power is a "full discipline", I feel like I'm basically getting a movement utility tacked on to every attack power for free. How great is that? Answer: very great.

All of this is just to explain why I'm not drawn to any of the power-point using classes. I'm perfectly happy to play games with other people who use psionic characters.

Psionics feeling 'sci-fi' is an individual thing.  I personally think psionics feels more like magic than magic because it's internal, whereas wizards tool over formulas and books, studying the material rather than feeling it and meditating over it.  In other words, wizardry is more like science, whereas psionics is more mystical.


Quoted for truth.

I always liked Psionics because it gave me the sense that there was an inner power that people could use without invoking the will of a higher power. A very existential power source, everyone has the will to use it(at least in dark sun).

Primal - Granted by Nature
Arcane - Granted through spell books and pacts.
Divine - Granted by a God
Psionic - Found within yourself
Shadow - Granted through the Shadowfell
Martial - Trained to be that good.
 
Ant Farm

but they are not the same and have diffrent mechanics, this seems to contradict itself,



The fluff is the exact same, or with small tweaks can be so. The mechanics are totally different.

"In a way, you are worse than Krusk"                               " As usual, Krusk comments with assuredness, but lacks the clarity and awareness of what he's talking about"

"Can't say enough how much I agree with Krusk"        "Wow, thank you very much"

"Your advice is the worst"

I've never witnessed this phenomenon in 4e. In previous editions, absolutely. Psionics were wonky, and the fact that they usually came straight out of their own book usually lead to that book simply being disallowed at many tables.


Personally I think this is mainly the big reason. Psionics has never been a core power source and no core class has ever had any psionic powers. Ever. They've always come out of some random source book a year or so after the core books were released and didn't really work the same way any other class did. For instance all spell casters work very similarly and all non spell casters work very similarly. Psions have had their own mechanics. Also in an edition like 3e where pretty much everything got broken if you added supplementary books to the mix it was something asking to be OP or just not allowed because it wasn't in core.

I've not used psions much in 4e but the little that I've used of that power source in 4e they seem to be balanced enough compared to all the other classes.

Resident Grouch and Corrupting Influence A Monster Appears I'm Black and Blue how 'bout you?

Psionics don't bother me but I think that it's because I came to D&D having played Warhammer 40k for a long, long time. A place where a Wizard and a Psyker can do the same reality-warping stuff and it's all the same. Mechanics wise, Psionic classes with the Power Point option are different but whatever, I tend towards Arcane and Martial characters so it doesn't really matter.
Spiteful Wizard and Voice of Reason of the House of Trolls The Silent God of the House of Trolls Unfrozen OTTer Arbiter of the House of Trolls Yes, I have many titles. Deal with it.
I think in the future I might just lean towards refluffing everything. Tossing a dagger can be refluffed to be the casting of a spell. You also have only so many daggers as well as spell usages (unless it's 4e but then we can just assume you have a magic dagger where it comes back to your hand after toss). And heck I can decide that the dagger or magic missile is instead a blinding beam of holy light or a dark whip of necrotic taint. Different feel but all would use the same mechanics. Oh or I could just say an invisible force hit the dude over there because I wished harm on them or something. So psionic power with the same mechanics.

Actually that might be a good idea. Could turn a fighter into any class imaginable with just a little fluff.

Resident Grouch and Corrupting Influence A Monster Appears I'm Black and Blue how 'bout you?

personally, i dislike the way the 4e psionics are handled.


However, my answer to your question wouldn't involve that at all.

I think that people tend to dislike/ignore/shy-away-from psionics due to the game setting.

think about it! most settings feature plenty of "fighters" in the form of guards, thugs, bravos, mercenaries, etc.

most settings feature several thief-types, ranging from guttersnipe up to the regional spymaster.

most settings feature religious or holy adventurers - priests in local churches, paladins of knightly orders, as well as the long-established cleric and paladin PCs and NPC adventurers.

most settings feature a HUGE abundance of magic.  Wizards, sorcerors, bards, random portals, floating cities, traps that magically flood a room in fire.....even in Dark sun, one of the least "magic-y" settings, there's a GIANT multicolored ziggurat in Tyr and the veiled alliance of wizards is working to keep magic from finishing off the destruction of the feywild.

now, contrast this with psionics, which has virtually no place in eberron, only traces in the forgotten realms, and tends to be completely overlooked in most homebrew settings (where martial power or amazing wizards tend to be the movers and shakers of the past and present world).

in fact, the aforementioned Dark Sun campaign setting seems to be the only campaign setting where more than a cursory effort has been made to integrate psionics.  Dark Sun actually goes so far as to say that psionics is the norm and magic must be practiced in secret!

my answer to the question has been given.  Now, my suggestion to you, if you're looking to play in a game where psionics are more "mainstreamed" and accepted, is to check out that campaign setting....you mentioned soulknife, so i assume you're playing 3.x, but even the 4e dark sun campaign setting book, while not having any real mechanical effect on a 3.x game, will be able to help players and DMs alike to concieve of an entirely new system that MIGHT allow your psionics and the rest of the party's lack of psionics to coexist more peacefully.                  
With 3.5 the stuff about psionics I didn't like was the same stuff that frustrated me about spell casting and balance issues in 3.5 in general.  The soulknife was a fun class and full of flavor and potential, but at higher levels especially was at best a meatshield for the psions in my party.  And the psionic warior was useful to dip into, but flawed by itself and hard to build right.

In 4E I, like many others, really don't like how they did the power point system.  Rewards sticking with low level powers and spamming them too much.  Mechanically the classes are balanced against other ones in their roles for the most part, but I have no interest in ever playing any of the current power point classes.  I played a psion for one session when the player was absent and that was enough. 

4E monks on the other hand are one of favorite classes.

I and the people in my groups have never had a problem with the flavor of psionics, although in the earliest editions we never really used psionics in my groups.
So I've been playing for a while now and I've notice when you tell people your a Psionics they don't really like rping with you



Previous editions never meshed the system right with the martial and magical, it always came out dramatically overpowered, or it was a mechanical nightmare on par with "Aftermath."

To me, it belongs in either a sci-fi setting or it is something available exclusively to monsters to up their threat level and really put some fear into players.  Mind Flayers were not only badass because they could suck your brains out, but because they could open up your skull from across the room if they had the urge.  

  T 
Yeah. I did just kill your BBEG with a vorpal frisbee. Problem?

idk in my 2e campaign we had one psionicist who seemed on par with everyone else in terms of power and was a lot of fun for everyone.


 


idk in my 2e campaign we had one psionicist who seemed on par with everyone else in terms of power and was a lot of fun for everyone.




In that case, I'd say kudos to DM and player involved for treading the line. The rules for psionics in AD&D 2E in no way support that end result.

I don't really like the storyline reason for psionics. They tied it too much into the living gate which is something none of my campaigns ever talk about. Doesn't really play well with RPing.
Ant Farm
I don't really like the storyline reason for psionics. They tied it too much into the living gate which is something none of my campaigns ever talk about. Doesn't really play well with RPing.



That's fluff, so it's not a requirement.  Reflavor it to something that does fit your campaign.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
I loved my 4e Changeling Psion. She was my first char that was Cha based and trained in bluff - 15 bluff at lvl 7 is amazing (and god did I have fun with faulty memory). I also decided to make her a lawful (smart) evil char. Manipulating people to suit my purposes with bluff was awesome, and the psionic powers gave it a fun flavor either using them to convince them or use as faux intimidation "I'll know if you're lying" (even if I wont). We flavored the abiity as being rare, but not completely unheard of. You get so much farther with discression rather than that big, flashy wizardy stuff.

Yes I didn't like my combat mechanics much, but with enough points in bluff, who needs it? Also, I had so much fun out of combat that I didn't mind all that much.
 
..I can not say why people do not like psionics, but I can tell you why i absolutely love psionics..

..firstly i love the abstract slightly skewed application of the effects, damaging abilities usually have odd dice numbers like 7 or 13.. ..minor but I like it..

..secondly I love the ability to augment the powers, some have one simple augment, some have several augments giving you immense adaptability..

..lastly, the feats, the psionic feats are amazing and in my opinion are themselves in many ways the predicessor to the reserve feats.. ..the reserve feats run off stored magical energy, and the psionic feats run off  stored "psionic focus"..


..I remember my buddie was DM'ng a drow campaign and on the "back nine" of it we came across a green or black dragon i cant remember, and it got in my psi-warrior's face and popped off at the mouth a sweet one liner and I responded with the line from Beo-Wulf where he told the grizzly monster, "I am vengeance, I am anger, I am strength.. ..", I had a great sword with the vicious enchantment and started laying into him, mind you I had no armor on..(that was his gimic, taking as much punishment along with the vicious sword, I would boost my temp HP with vigors and then empathic transfer hostile when I got into my real hp, it would get SILLY!,  when i augmented it into a burst effect)

..after a few augmented vigors and an empathic transfer hostile, I had the rest of the group in jaw dropping holy S**T status..
A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men. - Willy Wonka
3.0 was the first edition of D&D that I ever ran; not knowing any better, I tended to be very permissive.  So when one of my players asked if he could play a Psion, I happily hand-waved it.  The resulting character was able to spend Power Points to increase the Fort Save DC of his Disintegrate; basically, he could just dump power into the attack until it was literally impossible for an opponent to make its save versus instant death.  At his option, he could also split the Disintegrate to hit multiple targets.

So yeah, I can see why players and DMs who've experienced (unchecked) Psions in older editions might be carrying some baggage.
"The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else." -Umberto Eco, from Travels in Hyperreality "The first adventurer was a nuisance. I am sure he acted against his mother's, his wife's, and the council of old men's strict orders when he did it; but it was he that found where the mammoths die and where after a thousand years of use there was still enough ivory to equip the entire tribe with weapons. Such is the ultimate outline of the adventurer; society's benefactor as well as pest." -William Bolitho, from Twelve Against the Gods
..hey koradzi, I always though the second level kinetisist energy missile (I think its called energy missile, it might be energy ray) was a little OP vs other second level "magic" abilities.. ..and like I mentioned earlier the empathic transfer hostile augmented into burst was remarkably op, in MHO..
A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men. - Willy Wonka
Predominately, lack of familiarity with the rules was to blame in 3.5.

If you paid attention to the golden rule of psionics in 3.5, they were much more balanced than core casting. Ignorance of this rule led to people beliving it was broken.

Golden rule of 3.5 psionics: you cannot spend more power points on a power than your total manifester level.
Ahh, so THIS is where I can add a sig. Remember: Killing an ancient God inside of a pyramid IS a Special Occasion, and thus, ladies should be dipping into their Special Occasions underwear drawer.