Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Secrets of sha-Arthan: Adept

An adept by Zhu Bajie
Hit Dice:
Maximum Level: 14
Armor: Light or medium armor, no shields
Weapons: Any
Languages: Janeksa

An adept practices mental self-control to channel powers of the mind known as disciplines. The origin of this practice is shrouded in mystery, but it may be as ancient as the Makers themselves. Regardless of the truth, it is now widespread across sha-Arthan, particularly in those lands that were once part of the Empire of the Light of Kulvu.


An adept can use light or medium armor but does not have the training required to use heavy armor or shields. She can use any weapons.


An adept uses her inherent psychic ability to activate a number of disciplines individually or in combination, according to the Adept Level Progression table below. Disciplines are chosen by the player from among the following:

  • Clairvoyance: An adept can see through or into opaque or solid material within 30’ for up to 1 turn per level.
  • Control Self: An adept exerts psychic control of her own body for 1 turn per level, during which time she can suspend normal bodily functions (stop or slow heartbeat, respiration, etc.) without a detriment to normal physical or mental performance; gain total recall of memory; or perform minor feats of strength, agility, and/or mental prowess. The referee has final say on the effects of these feats.
  • ESP: By concentrating for 1 round, an adept can perceive and understand the thoughts of living creatures within 60’ for 1 turn per level. A target detects the adept’s use of this discipline with a successful WIL check. An unwilling target may make a mental attack save to resist. While reading thoughts, the adept may move but cannot attack.
  • Fear: An adept can cause a target within 120’ to flee for 1 turn per level, unless it successfully makes a mental attack save.
  • Healing Trance: By meditating intensely for 1 turn, during which time she is insensate and unable even to defend herself, the adept can heal herself 1d6+1 hit points per use. At 6th level, the trance heals 2d6+2 hit points per use. Alternately, the trance may be used to grant a +4 fortitude save bonus against one poison or disease per use.
  • Illusion: An adept can create a visual illusion of her choosing so long as she concentrates. Within a range of 120’, an adept can animate an illusion within a 6’ cube +1’ per level. Targets who succeed at a mental attack save recognize the illusion for what it is. Illusory enemies have DR 10 and vanish if successfully struck. Damage dealt by such enemies is not real. A character who appears to die actually falls unconscious, a character petrified is paralyzed, and so on. Such effects last 1d4 turns.
  • Mind Shield: An adept can shield her mind for 1 turn per level, granting her a +4 bonus to any saving throws against mental attacks of any kind for its duration. This discipline requires little concentration, so the adept is free to attack or use other disciplines while it is in effect.
  • Mind Blast: An adept directs a blast of psychic energy at a target within 60’, dealing damage equal to 2d6 + 1 per level of the adept. A successful mental attack save halves the damage.
  • Psychometry: The adept sees into the past of whatever single object she touches, understanding its function purpose, origins, and who has touched it in the last 10 years per level.
  • Suggestion: An adept’s words take on a supernatural potency. Up to one HD of persons per level of the adept must make a successful mental attack save or follow her suggestion for 1 round per level of the adept. (If the suggestion would endanger a subject, that subject automatically saves). This discipline is language-dependent and may be used in conjunction with telepathy. The subject is unaware of the manipulation, but, after its duration, he realizes he has been psychically influenced. Suggestion may only be used once per turn against the same subject.
  • Telekinesis: An adept can move solid objects with a remote psychic “hand.” The remote hand can be projected to a range of 20’ + 5’ per level and lasts for 3 rounds per level. The amount of weight manipulated is equal to 3 +1 per level VIG (see Encumbrance). Movement speed is 10’ per round per level.
  • Telepathy: An adept can establish bidirectional mental communication with one other living intelligent creature within 90’ for 1 turn per level. Every four levels, the adept can add another such creature to her mental communication. The creature need not share a language with the adept. Communication is limited to conscious thoughts but can include visual, auditory, tactile, and olfactory components.

Frequency of Use

Twice per day per level, an adept may use any combination of the disciplines she has developed. For example, a 2nd-level adept has developed three disciplines and may use any combination of them four times per day in total. For example, the adept could use ESP and suggestion once each and telepathy twice or ESP twice and suggestion and telepathy each once, or in any other combination.

Using Disciplines

An adept must spend a round concentrating in order to activate a discipline. This precludes moving, attacking, or taking any other actions.

In combat: Like spell casting, using a discipline can be disrupted in combat (see Spell Casting). The use of mental disciplines must be declared before initiative is rolled.


  1. Neat, reminds me of the Kineticist.

  2. Illusions excepted, the Adept's powers seem very Jedi-like. I like it !

  3. Reminds me of the psionics in Traveller.