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Using Psionics

Using Psionics

See Character Creation for details about how to gain psionic abilities as Gifts.

Below is a list of psychic powers and their key attributes. The key attribute is used to determine a character’s overall ability to use that psionic power. A character with a Great Focus attribute would be a good candidate for the mind control ability, for example.

Any time you use a psionic ability, roll against the ability’s key attribute. Characters who do not have the key attribute listed on their character sheet have a default level of Fair. The degree of success determines how powerful an effect you can generate with the psychic ability.

For example: Jane is attempting to create fire using the pyrokinesis ability. She rolls a check against her Focus attribute, which she has at a level of Great (+2). After totaling her die roll at -1 and adding her +2, she determines that she rolled a result of Good (+1). With that result the GM rules that she can create a flame about the size of a bon fire. If she had rolled a Fair result, she might have only been able to create a match-sized flame, while a Superb result may have allowed her to generate a raging inferno.

Each psionic power entry includes examples of effects that can be generated by different degrees of success. These are by no means the limits of a character’s psionic abilities, but guidelines as to what possibilities each ability possesses and the relative power level of each.

When using a psionic power, it is possible to enhance your result by spending a Luck Point. For each point you spend, you gain a +1 bonus on the check. This is especially important to note when making opposed checks, since these points may mean the difference between success and defeat! When alter- ing a result in this way, you must declare the number of Luck Points you will be spending before the check is made.

Opposed Checks, Difficulties, and Degrees of Success

Each time you roll to determine the outcome of activating a supernatural ability you will need to determine your degree of success. In the powers listed below, different ladder levels are described to give you an idea of some of the possible effects of the power’s use. In each case, these descriptions are based on the degree of success of the check, not the initial check itself.

Example 1 (Opposed Check): Nathan uses antipsi to resist the effects of Luke’s control animate attack against him (instead of rolling a Body check to resist the attack). After all abilities and rolls are calculated, Nathan determines that his check result is Superb (+3). However, Nathan’s check is being opposed by Luke’s attack and Luke gets a total result of Great (+2).

Nathan subtracts Luke’s result from his own and gets a Good (+1) degree of success. Nathan can suppress Luke’s attack against him for up to 1 minute. Luke decides it is too difficult to try to remain in contact with Nathan long enough to cause him any harm and decides to back off.

Example 2 (Difficulty): Luke is trying to change a wooden door in to an iron door to try to reinforce it against attack. Because a door is a relatively large object and iron is a harder substance than wood, the GM decides that this task will have a Great difficulty. Luke is feeling pretty confident about this because he has a Great Focus attribute and is therefore a skilled shaper.

Luke rolls 4dF and gets an overall result of +1 on the dice. He adds that to his Great Focus (+2) for a total result of Superb (+3). He beat the target difficulty by 1 level: Superb (+3)—Great (+2) = Good (+1). Luke succeeded at the task, but his degree of success was only Good. This means that he is able to change the wooden door in to iron but only for about six hours, after which point the iron door turns back into a wooden one.

Additional Skill Requirements

It may not always be enough to simply activate a psionic power. Some effects require a degree of precision or knowledge that doesn’t come innately.

Depending on the desired outcome of a power’s use, a character may need to roll an additional skill check to accompany a successful result. Success means that the power is activated properly and that the desired result is attained. Successfully activating the power but failing the subsequent skill check means something happened, but not necessarily what was intended (or with as much precision as desired).

It is ultimately up to the GM to determine whether or not an additional skill check is required. Below is an example to give you an idea of what situations may call for additional skill checks.

Example: Lester wants to use control inanimate to turn his cybernetic legs into tank legs temporarily. He has already rolled a Superb result to activate the power, so the GM rules that he has the potential to do so.

However, tank legs require moving parts and a basic knowledge of how they function. The GM decides to call for an additional Technical or Vehicle skill check at Great difficulty to see if Lester knows enough about tanks to make legs that are actually functional.

Lester gets a Superb result, or a Good degree of success, so the GM allows Lester to turn his cybernetic legs into functioning tank legs for as long as the power allows.

If Lester’s Vehicle check had only been Good (a Mediocre degree of success) he may have been able to turn his legs into tank legs, but they wouldn’t function very smoothly. If his result was Mediocre (an Abysmal degree) he might have turned his legs into paperweights that only look like the wheels of a tank.