A poltergeist is unrestrained psionic energy. A spiritfont poltergeist isn’t the same thing as the specter poltergeist variant. A specter is a creature; a spiritfont is an environmental phenomenon.
A poltergeist can be playful or aggressive. In some rare cases a poltergeist might serve as a protective, friendly force, sometimes called a guardian angel.
Each poltergeist has its own set of powers, which can include any of the following: animate electricity, blood tendril, control light, ectoplasmic creation, energy blast, energy storm, flame manipulation, hydrokinesis, inertial barrier, kinetic barrier, probability manipulation, puppetry, sap vitality, spectral armament, suspension, telekinetic grasp, tremor. It has a maximum power point reserve equal to twice its Intensity and can spend a number of power points up to half its Intensity on a single power. At the end of each round, the poltergeist regains 5 + its Intensity modifier power points up to its maximum reserve. A poltergeist can always use the at-will functions of its powers.
A poltergeist can concentrate on any number of powers and effects. Additionally, it can take reactions, either by using its psionic powers or by attempting to block a creature when it attempts to move (see Hostile Poltergeist below). When it manifest an energy power, it can have one or more energy types as the DM decides, or even use a feature in its environment to give the power one, such as lit candles or fallen snow.
Signs of a Poltergeist
A dormant poltergeist betrays no hint of its presence, but once active a poltergeist is hard to miss.
A poltergeist manifests its powers as a sort of background energy, and will use at-will functions of its powers to affect its environment. They are known for psychokinetic phenomena such as opening and closing doors, scratching surfaces, levitating objects, moving objects at varying speeds, or arranging objects in a semi-random pattern.
While active, a poltergeist will use its psionic powers at random. Roll a d6, and on a 5 or 6 the poltergeist will take an action using its at-will power functions. It won’t deliberately attack a creature, but also pays one no regard, and may accidentally push or otherwise affect a creature with its power.
The hostile poltergeist is known as a severe danger to creatures within its range. Each turn it will activate one of its powers to attack a creature within its range or dislodge an item that was brought into its range. While a poltergeist isn’t a creature with a will, it seems to take umbrage at attempts to change its environment.
A poltergeist will select its power to manifest seemingly at random, but usually it will manifest one with the best chance of removing a target disturbing the area within its range. It will spend as many power points as it needs to accomplish its desire.
It may also use its turn to prevent a creature from escaping it, such as slamming a door and holding it shut with supernatural force or sliding an object to trip a creature. In cases like this, a poltergeist doesn’t need to manifest a power. To trip or push a target, it must succeed on a power attack. When the poltergeist is holding an object with force, a creature must succeed on a Strength check against its save DC to move it.
A poltergeist normally accompanies a haunting, but can be encountered alone, often attached to an object such as a doll. A poltergeist will act based on its behavior. Its behavior can change in response to its circumstance. For instance, a poltergeist that is attached to a creature or object could be protective toward it, playful when alone with it, and aggressive toward any other creature. A poltergeist attached to a location may be playful normally, but turn hostile if a creature approaches a certain space within the area.
Protective. A protective poltergeist will use its powers to prevent a creature from being harmed. It may catch a falling creature or object with suspension or redirect harmful lightning damage or water away from an object.
Playful. When playful, a poltergeist manipulates objects in some way, such as rearranging furniture or causing a target to hover and dance. It may drop held targets, causing fall damage, but doesn’t tend to use its powers to cause direct harm.
Aggressive. When aggressive, the poltergeist seeks to cause damage to a target. It may smash vases or pictures, throw or animate furniture, or attempt to manipulate a creature into a danger such as a furnace.