We’ve looked at the possibility surrounding the psychic magic users of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Occult Adventures accessory in manipulating life energies granting Boons to allies by paying the price of a temporary imbalance. What about when they call those balances of life-force back to order?
Psychic Magic: Burdens
Where Boons represented a swift redistribution of power from the caster to the recipient, a Burden instead calls to question what the target has already created in terms of their own imbalances. A mage swathed in more magics that his body casually can hold just might find the price being called to pay. A warrior who always chooses violence may be forced to confront his bloody ways.
Basics of Burdens
- Power vs. Power – Burdens are an attempt by one caster to call into question another creature’s power and relationship to the universe. As such these magics ALWAYS require the caster to prove themselves as an agent of balance (with a caster level check). If this fails, then the Burden fails. The more “imbalanced” a target is, the easier it is for a psychic to enact a Burden to force the balance.
- Balance is What Balance is – If the power of the Burden is laid successfully on the target, then the Burden takes effect. No amount of will resists its presence. Its power is entirely dependent on the targets own choices and powers and is more a matter of fact than one of resistance. The Burden’s detriments are always in scale to the targets own magnitude of power.
- Surrender is an Option – Burdens can be surrendered to. A Burden presents a simple choice to the target, pay for your cosmic imbalances or surrender your power. Each choice can be made in part or whole, depending on the degree the target of the Burden wishes to embrace responsibility for their imbalances or suffer for them.
Burdens will be part of the Book of Beyond (currently available for pre-order as Book of Beyond WIP subcription) adding dozens of new spells for your psychic magic users. Acting as an agent of cosmic balance sound like something your psychic character is meant for? Then maybe you should consider this feat:
Bearer of Burdens
You have accepted a calling as an agent of primal balance.
Benefit: When you make a caster level check to enact a spell with the [burden] descriptor your caster level is increased by a +2 circumstance bonus. At 10th level this bonus increases to +4. This does not raise you caster level for any other purpose.
Book of Beyond: Spells of Boon & Burden will be available later this month or you can pre-order it as part of the Book of Beyond WIP subcription! You can see our other products at: d20pfsrd.com, drivethruRPG, paizo and RPGNow.