PSHB Small Update

I’m only 1/4 through the level 9 to 11 playtest, but decided to push an update sooner rather than later, given how long Dead in Thay takes to run. I’ve also decided to do more formalized testing level 15+ by employing similar gauntlets like I did at 3rd level as a check-on. I’ll post more on that later and offer people opportunity to offer ideas and good gauntlets to challenge upper level PCs.

This update is mostly tweaks, important corrections on intent, and restoring some facets lost in the grand power compaction. So far the Ghost Hunter and Transient Blade transcendents, Orders of Essence and Force savants, Shadowmind rogue, and Dream sorcerer have managed to not become dead… in Thay.

Class Changes

This update mostly tweaks certain features where needed (such as what to do if you already have proficiency in something you just gained).



  • Dimensional dissassociation was wrongly in the list of Medium powers (it’s a general channeler power). Mediums now have access to spirit ward.


  • Savant Orders that swapped manifesting ability no longer have this feature (it will be restored in AToE class options alongside spellcaster ability swaps).
    • Foresight can now use a reaction to add Intelligence modifier on Constitution saving throws to maintain concentration.
    • Thought can add the Intelligence modifier on Wisdom (Insight), Charisma (Deception), and Charisma (Intimidation) checks when made against someone they can see within 30 feet.

Order of Essence

  • Mind over Body properly addresses multiclass and feats: if you already have Constitution saving throws, you gain Strength or Dexterity saving throws instead (your choice). It also now only allows one lingering power at a time to prevent stacking effects and growing bookkeeping.

Kinetic Expression

  • Now has language allowing you to change your energy type when you reach a level with the Ability Score Improvement feature.

Order of Force

  • Psychokinesis clarified that only when you make a ranged attack with your Psi Blast feature is it an energy power and that it also counts as a psychokinesis power. The intent is that you get to add your Kinetic Expression PB damage bonus to your ranged psi blast, but not your psychic damage melee psi blast.

Order of Thought

  • Much like the School of Cerebromancy, I’ve decided to remove Charisma saving throw proficiency for the same reason. Mental Conduit no longer grants Charisma saving throws; the feature is strong enough to stand on its own.


  • Retuned features to be more consistent along peer design (paladin/ranger)
    • Transcendental Focus merged into Blade and Will which is now at 7th level.
    • Adamant Resolve has been removed. I’ll tweak Martial Focus if I’m seeing transcendents losing powers too often. You shouldn’t get to ignore concentration saves.
    • Supernatural Focus has been removed.
    • Martial Focus now also allows you to take a reaction when you are shoved to add your Wisdom modifier to your save or ability check.

Ghost Hunter

  • Ghost Touch ghostly glow now requires and consumes your Martial Focus damage die. This function needs a limiter or cost of some sort, and I like this solution to tie it into the core class while eliminating the freebie faerie fire effect. Plus it plays into Second Mind later.
  • Hunter’s Resolve gives choice of Charisma or Intelligence saves.
  • Rebuke refresh cost reduced. I neglected revising transcendent feature power point cost when I reduced mid-level power point reserves.


  • Tracing Steps no longer can be refreshed with power points. It competed for power points too much with the 18th level feature and the 18th level feature should be move efficient.

Power Changes

Power List

The following changes to the power list have been made since the redirection of certain powers:

  • Channelers are gaining crystalline construct, mindlink, and starcall.
  • Transcendents are losing dimensional dissassociation and mental barrier but gaining mindlink.
  • Most powers with AoE effects should be listed as “up to” their dimensions. This should be fixed. Certain powers don’t have this flexibility because of the nature of how they work (e.g. singularity, ectoplasmic creation), while others don’t need it since you control what happens in the effect area (e.g. harmonics, weather manipulation).


  • Noxious cloud effect reduced to 5 feet. This better aligns it with its conceptual peer (ghast stench) and should make it easier to avoid friendly fire in more scenarios.

Energy Blast

  • Now references you need a clear path to the target. RAI is that it projects from you. Consequentially, I changed its range to self to indicate it projects out from you. New augmentation exists for adding a long range option.
  • Corrected issue where “up to” was missing on its range of area effects.
  • Added a new shape effect that “bursts” against up to two targets with a long range. The lob/grenade augmentation is now an empowerment for this new augmentation, and had its radius increased.
  • Cone and Point-blank burst distance increased.
  • Line empowerment now offers gradation and increases maximum length.

Energy Cloak

  • Fixed +d4 damage augmentation to properly allow unarmed strikes to benefit.


  • Swapped crit and reaction refresh costs. Automatic crit is very good, and too good in the hands of a rogue, so rather than strip this power from the Shadowmind list (because the reroll damage dice is a nice perk), I’m adjusting the cost. This also means it’s more expensive to use with mind spear and I’m quite comfortable adding this extra hurdle. This effect was always on the watch-and-see-with-bat-in-hand list. Some high level rogues will probably like regaining their reaction strategically.

Kinetic Barrier

  • 10-foot panel cost reduced.
  • Barrier 3/4 cover empowerment changed. at +6 (7), you can take a repeatable action to get 3/4 cover until start of next turn, and passive at +12 (13). Wall version is the intended mid-level cover option.

Living Weapon

  • Elemental augmentation cost reduced to 3. Logic here is pairing this with the +1 bonus makes it equal to elemental weapon in cost.

Mystic Arms

  • After further testing, the crit modification has changed. for 2 pp, you get +1d6 force damage on a critical hit, for 2 more (4) you get the 19-20 range, and 4 pp beyond that (8) you get the 18-20 range. Crit modification is tough to balance because in simulation it performs terrible, but in play when you have access to on-demand burst riders, it gets a lot better. At 4 pp for increased range, it is more consistent with peer powers. Playtests and simulation peg 4 power points (2nd+/3rd-level spell slot) about right for cost-benefit.


  • Fixed error on damage in baseline effect and rewrote the damage description for better clarity.

Weather Manipulation

  • Fixed cost error on wind augmentations.
  • Added augmentation to expand the more mundane aspects of the storm.
  • Moved the bonus action suppression to the core description (instead of burying it within the automatic dimension increase augmentation). Also rewrote sections that referenced choosing spaces: the intent is you actively suppress the spaces you want using a bonus action. This applies to any aspect, be it temperature, rains, or winds.

Spell Changes

Dream Conjuration

  • Added clause to close loophole with spells that teleport and transport. RAI is the caster can’t benefit directly from the spell. Notable spells this covers include: arcane gate, dimension door, planar shift, and teleport. Final version of the PSHB will include a PHB, XGtE, TCoE comprehensive list for what are valid spells for the dream line of spells.