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    Canonfire :: View topic - Scarlet Brotherhood & Psionics?
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    Scarlet Brotherhood & Psionics?
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    Novice

    Joined: Jul 18, 2008
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    Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:10 pm  
    Scarlet Brotherhood & Psionics?

    Howdy Sages,

    was wondering if anyone can point me towards any material on what "mental" powers the Brotherhood might have access to?

    Have seen the "Splintered Mind" article in Dragon# 281, and looking through the Expanded Psionic thingo, ThrallHerd & Fist of Zuoken (although under a different God, of course) seem to fit the bill, but nothing specific.

    However, i don't really want to introduce Psionics into the campaign, and the material in The Scarlet Brotherhood suggests they use drugs and magic, so maybe the Officer of Thralls has a lot of Enchanter/Monks in its ranks?

    Any thoughts would be appreciated.

    Triple20!
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 20, 2008
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    Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:24 am  

    Though likely not canon, in my GH campaign Clerics are leaders amongst the SB, with arcane casters treated more like artillery than people. I don't use psionics at all, though it is not because I have anything against them.

    If nothing else, you can use Shugenja or Wu Jen for their casters, as I have done before.
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Mar 13, 2008
    Posts: 563
    From: brazil

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    Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:53 am  

    welcome!

    what edition of the game are you using?

    IMO, the revised dark sun boxed set have simple yet good mechanics for psionics, and even if you whant, some psi power for non-psionics (like som sort of "wild talent")
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 19, 2008 9:26 am  
    Re: Scarlet Brotherhood & Psionics?

    Triple20 wrote:
    . . . I was wondering if anyone can point me towards any material on what "mental" powers the Brotherhood might have access to? . . .

    However, i don't really want to introduce Psionics into the campaign, . . .


    Hey there! What you're saying makes me think of good old 1st Edition. If a DM chose to use mindflayers but chose not to use the optional psionic rules, the 1st Ed mindflayer had toys the PCs did not have access to. You could run the SB psionics the same way.

    A select subset of SB members might have "mental powers" but the PCs would not have any access to anything similar. This way you can have your cake and eat it too. You can add psionic SB members but you are really not introducing full fledged psionics into your campaign. The psionic SB members become akin to the mindflayers in 1e if the DM choose not to use the 1e psionic rules for PCs.
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    GVD
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    Joined: Aug 17, 2004
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    From: Computer Desk

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    Sat Jul 19, 2008 12:14 pm  

    When I first started playing; a choice was made not to use psonics but the DM did use mind flayers. The mind flayers attacks did damage from some unknown means.

    PCs don't have to know why or how everything happens to them. In fact, I would argue that it is more realistic if they don't know everything. After an encounter just have the PCs realise over drinks in the tavern - those freaky mind flayers do some weird stuff - stay away from them.
    Novice

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    Sat Jul 19, 2008 6:05 pm  

    Cheers all, unexplained mental powers it is then.

    Had a bad experience in 2Ed with Wild Talents (and subsequent campaign implosion) but didn't really want to use magic either (there's an image somewhere of a monk with his hand pointing at a thrall who's clutching his head - always made me think Psionics rather than something more mundane)

    Triple20!
    Black Hand of Oblivion

    Joined: Feb 16, 2003
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    From: So. Cal

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    Sun Jul 20, 2008 6:29 am  

    I prefer to treat psionics as a sort of mystic tradition. It has similarities to magic of either kind, but is dissimilar in that a person acquires these mystic abilities through the barest glimpse of the truth of the world and what lies beyond it. In many ways, this understanding goes far beyond that of wizards and clerics, but these mystics have only the tiniest grain of this true knowledge and so what they can do with it is very limited(usually). Just this inkling of understanding gives them the ability to manifest powers. That also lends to helping explain the connection between psionics and marital arts as expressed in Xan Yae's and Zuoken's cults. Think of all of that funky martial arts mysticism you've seen in movies and the abilities that defy the laws of nature, and there you have it. As to the whole power crystal thing, I kind of tone that down and go more with "mystically attuned" items and places. There are crystals, but such things don't have to be crystals all of the time in my version of things. Different groups have developed skills in attuning different things/substances. This simply serves to make different mystics of different traditions that much more…um...different. Wink It's all window dressing in the end, but it adds another level of interest to things in a very basic way.

    As the Scarlet Brotherhood has its great monk tradition, it seems only right that they have a psionic or "mystic" tradition as well. Indeed, outside of the Scarlet Brotherhood and the church of Xan Yae/Zuoken, psionics are beyond extremely rare in my campaign.

    Here is also a link to thread with suggestions on how to go about playing the Scarlet Brotherood in a campaign:

    http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=791&start=0&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=&sid=ab179cd3f38115ea53f3b6b9a0773a6e
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    Thu Jul 24, 2008 10:22 am  

    Even if you don't use Psionics in your game, or allow them normally, there's no reason you can't use them as a DM. I personally love psionics and think the link between the Far Realm and psions is not an accident. Abberations (mind flayers, aboleths, etc) have a much higher incidence of psionics, but some others could too. One of my old GMs had psionics in his world being a human invention the other races didn't know or understand. I could see applying that to the Scarlet Brotherhood easily. And it would lend some credence to the Big T link, while not necessarily making it absolute fact. I also enjoy linking martial arts and psionics. It creates the martial arts mystical master who is not a monk, but has all the same feel. If you use 3.5, the Complete Psionic book has a "divine" psionic character that would work well with the Scarlet Brotherhood. Also, Lords of Madness is a great book for 3.5, psionics, and of course, abberations, though it can easily be used without psionics. And as the psionics rules are available with the SRD (D20SRD.org is a good site, but there are a few other good ones.), you don't even have to buy a book to use it as a DM.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 07, 2007
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    From: The Kingdom of Nyrond (LA County, CA)

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    Thu Jul 24, 2008 1:45 pm  

    MikelAmroni wrote:
    Even if you don't use Psionics in your game, or allow them normally, there's no reason you can't use them as a DM.


    I dunno...my own gut feeling is, outside of something like a Mind Flayer, giving the vilains something that the PCs would not normally have recourse to can be a disaster waiting to happen. If you let the Brotherhood have psions, but not the PCs, at some point the players are going to ask "why do they get all the wonderful toys?" And then they're going to ask even tougher questions like "Can we have psionics?" "If you let them have it, why not?" and "D'you guys think this tar is hot enough, and what'd you do with the feathers?" Laughing
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 28, 2008 6:23 am  

    Pat_Payne wrote:
    MikelAmroni wrote:
    Even if you don't use Psionics in your game, or allow them normally, there's no reason you can't use them as a DM.


    I dunno...my own gut feeling is, outside of something like a Mind Flayer, giving the vilains something that the PCs would not normally have recourse to can be a disaster waiting to happen. If you let the Brotherhood have psions, but not the PCs, at some point the players are going to ask "why do they get all the wonderful toys?" And then they're going to ask even tougher questions like "Can we have psionics?" "If you let them have it, why not?" and "D'you guys think this tar is hot enough, and what'd you do with the feathers?" Laughing


    I NEVER let my players have all my toys, pretty much ever. I am the DM, if I say a certain group has X advantage, then unless you play as said group, then you don't get access to said advantage. Now I am all about double agents, and traitors, but you have to deal with the consequences of being a traitor or double agent to the SB. Man that would be an awesome campaign. But no, I don't see this as a problem. Simple fact is psionics and magic are perfectly balanced in 3.5, and you don't need to give players access to both, if they have access to one. I once had a DM run a highly modified Shackled City, but he changed it to the city having Psionics and Divine Magic, arcane magic being mistrusted by the city and those in it (but used by our enemies just fine). We were pretty well balanced.
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