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Old 04-22-2010, 08:27 AM   #1
MissAmber
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: The Kirkland Wastelands of Washington
Default Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

First, some background.

I've been playing GURPS since 2nd Edition, way back when I was a young lass. My 3rd Edition library is almost 200 books with repeats for those books that were loved so much, they fell a part and couldn't be held in a three ring binder any more. I even have multiple copies of the Basic Set so that I could lend them out when we had game day here at the house.

I am also a late adopter of 4th Edition. Primarily because of time constraints between work, my photography business, and other hobbies, I just haven't had a lot of time for a sit down game.

Until now, we started up a Wednesday night game of high fantasy set in the far future. The characters are all from 1985. Ah, the influence of my childhood. ;)

So reading over the 4th Edition rules, including GURPS Psionics, has left me feeling utterly lost as to how psionics works. I'm sure it's all there, but it's just not clicking for some reason. Perhaps I'm too entrenched in the power controlled by skill paradigm of 3rd Edition.

Would someone help explain it to me?
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:34 AM   #2
Sunrunners_Fire
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissAmber View Post
So reading over the 4th Edition rules, including GURPS Psionics, has left me feeling utterly lost as to how psionics works. I'm sure it's all there, but it's just not clicking for some reason. Perhaps I'm too entrenched in the power controlled by skill paradigm of 3rd Edition.

Would someone help explain it to me?
Going by GURPS Psionic Powers, which I believe you're referencing there ...
  • EDIT: The psion purchases a Power Talent.
  • The psion purchases a psionic power, which is an advantage that defines what the power actually does.
  • The psion then purchases the appropriate Attribute/Hard skill for the power (advantage) purchased above.
  • To use the psionic power, the psion must succeed at the Attribute/Hard skill purchased to control the psionic power.
... So, buy Power, buy Skill to control Power, succeed at Skill Check to use power.

Its' all skill-enabled superpowers now. (Except the default magic system. But lets' not go there.)

Last edited by Sunrunners_Fire; 04-22-2010 at 08:38 AM.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:34 AM   #3
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissAmber View Post
So reading over the 4th Edition rules, including GURPS Psionics, has left me feeling utterly lost as to how psionics works. I'm sure it's all there, but it's just not clicking for some reason. Perhaps I'm too entrenched in the power controlled by skill paradigm of 3rd Edition.

Would someone help explain it to me?
The part that's explicitly Psionics is the Psionic Talents. You are supposed top buy a Psionic talent for every class of Psionic ability that you have.

After that, Psionics are just Advantages like Mind Reading or Telekinesis. You just buy the Ads that fit your Psi power. Gurps Powers has lots of examples and some guidance. The Psionic Powers pdf does a lot of the math for you and guides you toward certain combinations.

I'm not wild about it myself, but that's what there is in 4e.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:39 AM   #4
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

I'd love to help, but I think it's confusing too, and I'm not sure I get it either. It seems basically like they're trying to remove skill rolls from power usage. Which I find weird.

I just use the 3rd edition rules.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:40 AM   #5
MissAmber
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
The part that's explicitly Psionics is the Psionic Talents. You are supposed top buy a Psionic talent for every class of Psionic ability that you have.

After that, Psionics are just Advantages like Mind Reading or Telekinesis. You just buy the Ads that fit your Psi power. Gurps Powers has lots of examples and some guidance. The Psionic Powers pdf does a lot of the math for you and guides you toward certain combinations.
Right, Talents modify your roll from what I can tell, but what exactly are you rolling against?
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:44 AM   #6
Turhan's Bey Company
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

In 4e, psi isn't an entirely separate batch of abilities with their own extra-special set of rules. Rather, GURPS has a bunch of generically described advantages (mind-reading, flight, setting fires, healing, flight, etc.), to which certain modifications may be made to reflect that a they're provided by psionic abilities, as oppose to magic or technology (which may have their own special modifications). That is, a character doesn't have, say, "psi healing" so much as she has "healing" with a batch of psi-related limitations and enhancements.

So, then, to be a psi, you start by deciding which advantages you want to have. The Psionics chapter in the Basic Set suggests some groupings of related advantages you may want to buy to play a particular kind of psi. See, for example, "PK Abilities" or "Telepathy Abilities." When you buy advantages off of those lists as psi powers, you need to buy them with the listed -10% limitation, indicating that they're vulnerable to things that limit psionic abilities. Depending on what you and your GM decide on, there may be additional limitations which you will apply to your psi advantages.

You may, but are not required to, buy a Talent related to your bundle of psi abilities. Telepathy talent provides a bonus to the abilities in the telepathy bundle, PK talent to abilities in the PK bundle, and so on. The talent gives a bonus to attribute or skill rolls you need to use your psi abilities.

And what attribute/skill rolls do you need to make? That's where you go back and look at the underlying advantages. Some advantages require specific rolls to activate or use. Some do not. However, unlike earlier editions, there won't necessarily be specific skills associated with each advantage.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:48 AM   #7
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissAmber View Post
Right, Talents modify your roll from what I can tell, but what exactly are you rolling against?
Whatever the Advantage you're using says you're rolling against. If using standard-issue Advantages, that'd typically be IQ. If you're using Psionic Powers or a similar Skills for Everyone setup, it's an appropriate IQ/Hard skill. Which one to use with each ability is listed in the writeup.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:49 AM   #8
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

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Originally Posted by MissAmber View Post
Right, Talents modify your roll from what I can tell, but what exactly are you rolling against?
IQ mostly. Psionic Powers adds the concept of Skills for Psi. Your level of Talent adds to the IQ roll.

To be honest, the only time I used Psi powers in a 4e campaign I just used the 3e book. It was just simpler and didn't require the same level of general system mastery.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:50 AM   #9
lachimba
 
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Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissAmber View Post

So reading over the 4th Edition rules, including GURPS Psionics, has left me feeling utterly lost as to how psionics works. I'm sure it's all there, but it's just not clicking for some reason. Perhaps I'm too entrenched in the power controlled by skill paradigm of 3rd Edition.

Would someone help explain it to me?

I am not sure what you mean.

GURPS Psionic Powers [edit] has the power controlled by skilled paradigm. It is the same as 3rd [edit] edition apart from the underlying mechanics and the cost of the powers.


If you don't use GURPS Psionic Powers [edit] the roll is most often against Will, Per or IQ (+ Talent)

Last edited by lachimba; 04-22-2010 at 11:20 PM. Reason: changed to 3rd Edition from 4th and to GURPS Psionic Powers
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:50 AM   #10
carllarson
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Default Re: Psionics in 4th Ed: I'm not getting it...

Same as any roll. Each psi power has a Hard skill, modified by talent. So you roll adjusted skill, same as the 3E version. RPK wrote Psionic Powers seemingly to duplicate the understandings of 3E Psionics.

Try to look at it this way: buy a Psi Talent, you are at least latent in that ability. Buy powers that are part of that ability, such as TK Grab for Psychokinesis Talent. Buy TK Grab skill as a IQ/H skill. Roll as needed, same as always.

Added as a 4E mechanic are techniques that require FP and a skill penalty, for more fancy tricks.

If GPP is still confusing, go with this: Buy talent to define the ability (ie Psychokinesis Talent), an advantage at the level you wish to have (TK Grab 12), and a skill TK Grab. Don't look at the way psi is built until you are ready for the full impact of modifying advantages in 4E, just use the costs as given, and the text writeups of the abilites.
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