Question about what class to play in a small group of three

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Hello everyone,

Soon, after a long time of not playing D&D, my brother will start a new campaign, but our group (me included) only has three people. One of them wants to play as a striker (sorcerer), that leaves the defender, which the other guy will play and me. I'm a bit torn, because I would like to play as a psion (I've always like psionics, even in 3.5 and it was my favourite 3.5 character back in the days), but the psion is a controller and our group desperately needs a leader, otherwise I can't see our group making it through encounters...

So I was thinking about a psion/ardent hybrid, but the synergy isn't exactly something to write home about. And as much as I love the idea of a hybrid character, making a psionic/non-psionic hybrid (such as a psion/artificer) means that my power point reserve will always be very, very low.

So I come to this board for advice. What class should I play? Do I need to abandon the idea of playing a psion altogether? Or is there a class(combination) that would be a solution to my problem? My character doesn't need to be optimized or anything, but I would like it to viable. :-)

Many, many thanks in advance!
If you want to play without a leader that can work. 

I would probably go psion hybrid if I was in your shoes, but you can get by if your party is smart about themes, multiclassing, maybe with a power swap for something like bastion of health, and items.
If you want to play without a leader that can work. 

I would probably go psion hybrid if I was in your shoes, but you can get by if your party is smart about themes, multiclassing, maybe with a power swap for something like bastion of health, and items.

Thanks for you reply!

If I should go for a psion hybrid, then with which class?

And how exactly do you power swap? Through multiclass feats? It's been a while since I last played, so I'm a bit rusty on all the rules and their finer points...

Like I said, I would want to play a psion, but it's not crucial that I do. I just want to play a fun class that complements a small team and makes it so that the party can with decent planning and tactics have a good enough chance of surviving encounters (since our DM used to be quite brutal with his monster set-ups).

Again, any help is appreciated and thanks in advance!
I am not a big expert on psions.  The classes that jump out at me to mc into are artificer since they use int and they have a great leader paragon path in spell commander.  Cleric, the class I know most about also hybrids well and you could go with divine oracle as a paragon path choice since it will dramatically increase accuracy vs will.  Cleric can also give you some good interrupts for your hybrid encounter powers and has good part friendly area dailies that compliment a controller.  Warlord works since you can take their "lazy" powers to grant your striker and defender attacks.  Shaman works as well, but its fairly complicated.

To power swap you mc the other class, say psion mc cleric.  At level 8 you can take the feat acolyte power.  You then pick a cleric utility power instead of a psion utility power for one level.  Probably one of the level 6 or 10 encounter heals in your case.  Its expensive in terms of feats, but it gives you a good bit of healing.

Another option is take a skill power from PHB3.  If you have training in heal for instance you can take swift recovery at level 6, which will let an ally second wind as a minor action each encounter.  Either in place of your level 6 psion power or by spending a feat for "skill power".  If you defender is a warden that is good choice especially, but otherwise its not as good as what you get from power swapping normally.
my advice is to stay away from the psionic classes. they are more of an accounting nuisance than fun.
But that is just me.

Play what you want to play, and never mind roles. They are largely unimportant, and frequently inaccurate.
If this is a 3e rather than a 4e game, play a psion, if that is what you want. Don't worry too much about encounters, trust your DM to make encounters that will challenge you even if you play smart, but will only kill you if you don't play well. Generally.
If it's 4E, play what you want. If it doesn't happen to be a leader, the group collectively should look at multiclassing to pick up some surge-based healing power, preferably an encounter power but two daily powers would work (and probably belong to different PCs, which has certain advantages). Your DM can adjust/design encounters to fit; it's easy.

In fact, don't start with a class. Start with what sort of person your character is going to be. Then work out the class from that. There are a few examples starting here. Sometimes, as in most of those, a personality concept points at a class; other times it's some other sort of characteristic that fits best into one class, as when I played Jiminy Cricket and Pinocchio as a Shaman and Spirit Companion.

I would somewhat advise that you pick a class/build that can stand up for itself in melee, because your defender will be busy helping the sorcerer. You want good armor proficiency (chain or better), or to have either  Dex or Int at least secondary if not primary.

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
One of you can play two characters.
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