Excerpts 04/02/2004

The Expanded Psionics Handbook
By Bruce R. Cordell

Your character's mind is an infinite metaphorical plane, where all things are possible. It may be that all characters have within them the potential for harnessing the energy of the mind, but only those who succeed in tapping into that potential can become psionic characters. A psionic character knows the mental pathways that lead to amazing edifices of thought and energy.

The Expanded Psionics Handbook gives you everything you need to create and play psionic characters, including psionic races, classes, skills and feats, powers, items, monsters, spells, and deities. Our sneak peek offers just a sampling:

From Chapter 1: Races

Choosing a Race

After you roll your ability scores and before you write them on your character sheet, choose your character's race. At the same time, you'll want to choose his or her class, since race affects how well a character can do in each class. Once you know your character's race and class, assign your ability score rolls to particular abilities, alter those abilities according to race (see Table 1-1: Racial Ability Adjustments), and continue detailing your character.

Dromite, elan, half-giant, maenad, xeph (left to right).

Racial Characteristics

Your character's race determines some of his or her qualities.

Race Adjustments

Find your character's race on Table 1-1: Racial Ability Adjustments. If your character has a racial level adjustment, add that number to the character's class level and racial Hit Dice (in the case of a thri-kreen character) to determine the character's effective character level (ECL). See Monsters as Races, page 172 of the Dungeon Master's Guide.

Apply the ability adjustments given on Table 1-1 to your character's ability scores. If these changes raise your score above 18 or below 3, that's okay, except in the case of Intelligence, which does not go below 3 for characters. (If your githzerai character would have an adjusted Intelligence of 1 or 2, make it 3 instead.) In addition, Table 1-1 gives each race's favored class and automatic languages.

A character's favored class doesn't count against him or her when determining experience point penalties for multiclassing (see XP for Multiclass Characters, page 60 of the Player's Handbook). Some of the favored classes on Table 1-1 are psionic classes, presented in Chapter 2 of this book.

All characters know how to speak Common, and many races speak racial languages as well. Smart characters (those with an Intelligence bonus) speak additional languages, one extra language per point of bonus. Select your character's bonus languages (if any) from the lists found in each race's Racial Traits summary.

Literacy: Unless your character is a barbarian, he or she can read and write all the languages he or she speaks.

Psi-Like Abilities

Many of the races described in this chapter have psi-like abilities, which function much like spell-like abilities. For an explanation of how psi-like abilities work, see page 65.

Table 1-1: Racial Ability Adjustments

Race Type Level
Ability Adjustments Favored
Automatic Languages
Dromite Monstrous humanoid 1 +2 Cha, -2 Str, -2 Wis Wilder Common
Duergar Humanoid +1 +2 Con, -4 Cha Fighter Common, Dwarven, Undercommon
Elan Aberration +0 -2 Cha Psion Common
Githyanki Humanoid +2 +2 Dex, +2 Con, -2 Wis Fighter Common, Gith
Githzerai Humanoid +2 +6 Dex, +2 Wis, -2 Int Monk Common, Gith
Half-giant Giant +1 +2 Str, +2 Con, -2 Dex Psychic warrior Common
Maenad Humanoid +0 -- Wilder Common, Maenad
Thri-kreen Monstrous humanoid +2* +2 Str, +4 Dex, +2 Wis, -2 Int, -4 Cha Ranger Common, Thri-Kreen
Xeph Humanoid +0 +2 Dex, -2 Str Soulknife Common, Xeph

*Thri-kreen have 2 racial HD, for a total ECL of 4.

Duergar, githyanki, githzerai, thri-kreen (left to right).

Recent Excerpts
Recent Articles

About Us Jobs New to the Game? Inside Wizards Find a Store Press Help Sitemap

©1995- Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Terms of Use-Privacy Statement

Home > Games > D&D > Articles 
You have found a Secret Door!
Printer Friendly Printer Friendly
Email A Friend Email A Friend
Discuss This Article Discuss This Article