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Thread: Psychic arcana question

  1. #1
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    Psychic arcana question

    I backed the Blue Rose Kickstarter and I love the setting, but I'm having some confusion about the way some of the psychic arcana work.

    Does anyone have familiarity with Blue Rose, enough to answer a question about it with authority?

    I'm away from my book, so forgive me if I use the wrong name or term.

    Suppose I'm an Adept, and I'm trying to use Mind Reading on another Adept who's got the Psychic Shield arcana active.

    Could someone help me understand exactly what rolls are needed in this case?

    To use Mind Reading, I need to make Psychic Contact with the target, is that right?

    So that would require me to bypass the target's Psychic Shield. How does this work exactly?

    Thanks to anyone who can help!

  2. #2
    Protomolecule Host Sentinel Ark's Avatar
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    Re: Psychic arcana question

    Edit: Revised to be extremely detailed compared to the summary in the next post.
    --

    How I remember whether or not Psychic Shield applies is by remembering two criteria:

    (1) the arcanum can be resisted using Willpower; and
    (2) the arcanum does not require mental contact.

    If the arcanum satisfies both criteria, then Psychic Shield applies. Examples include Psychic Contact and Heart Reading (if through line of sight)

    Also, an arcanum can specifically state it can be affected by or resisted with Psychic Shield. Examples include Second Sight and Sense Minds.

    When Psychic Shield applies, you get a chance to resist the arcanum using Willpower (Psychic), and if you fail, you can still resist normally.

    --

    Situation: An Adept is trying to sneakily use Mind Reading on an unwilling Subject they are not in Psychic Contact with. The Subject is trained in the Psychic Shield and Second Sight arcanum.

    Minor Action - Cast Psychic Contact

    (1) Adept makes a Psychic Contact test using Communication (Psychic) against TN 7 + Familiarity. If the Adept does not meet or exceed the TN, then the arcanum fails entirely. This is the Adept's arcane test result.

    (2) The Narrator makes a secret Second Sight (Sense Psychic Contact) test on behalf of the Subject using their Perception (Psychic) against the arcane test result. If the Second Sight test meets or exceeds the arcane test result, then the Subject is aware of the attempt. See Second Sight (Sense Arcana) for how much the Subject knows.

    (3) The Subject makes a Psychic Shield test using Willpower (Psychic) against the arcane test result. If the Psychic Shield test exceeds* the arcane test result, then the Subject has successfully resisted the Adept's Psychic Contact.

    (4) The Adept may, as a free action, choose to suffer a level of fatigue to automatically overcome the Subject's Psychic Shield, but doing so would automatically alert the Subject that they are under psychic assault. The Subject may, as a free action, also suffer a level of fatigue to negate this benefit.

    (5) If the Subject failed their Psychic Shield test, then they can resist normally using Willpower (Self-Discipline) against the arcane test result. As with Step 3, if the resistance test exceeds* the arcane test result, then the Subject has successfully resisted the Adept's Psychic Contact. Otherwise, the Adept has successfully established mental contact.

    Major Action - Cast Mind Reading

    (6) The Adept makes a Mind Reading test using Communication (Psychic) against the Subject's Willpower (Self-Discipline). If the Adept's roll meets or exceeds the Subject's roll, then Mind Reading is successful.

    (7) The Narrator makes a secret Second Sight (Sense Arcana) test on behalf of the Subject using their Perception (Psychic) ability against the Adept's Psychic Shield using Willpower (Psychic). If the Second Sight test meets or exceeds TN 11 and the Adept's Psychic Shield roll, then the Subject learns aspects of the arcanum. See Second Sight (Sense Arcana) for more details.

    (8) The Adept makes a Fatigue test using Willpower (Self-Discipline) against the opposed test result from Step 6.

    (9) The Adept makes a Corruption test using Willpower (Self-Discipline). See the Corruption table in the book for more details.

    * Note that it is "exceed" only and not "meet or exceed" because the Subject is defending themself against an arcanum. In Blue Rose and the AGE system in general, it is implied that the attacker breaks ties.
    Last edited by Sentinel Ark; 07-03-2018 at 05:24 AM. Reason: Revised to be very detailed in contrast to my next post.

  3. #3
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    Re: Psychic arcana question

    Thanks so much! That helps a lot.

  4. #4
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    Re: Psychic arcana question

    I do have another question on this subject.

    If the subject has Psychic Shield up and the adept trying to establish Psychic Contact wants to do it without the subject knowing, do they first make a roll against the Psychic Shield, and then against the subject's resistance (if the Psychic Shield roll fails)?

    And does that mean they've bypassed the Psychic Shield, in case they succeed at the test to be undetected, so now they're making the Psychic Contact test. Do they need to roll against the Psychic Shield again?

  5. #5
    Protomolecule Host Sentinel Ark's Avatar
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    Re: Psychic arcana question

    Edit: I read the book and fixed a few details and added some clarifying remarks for others to use as reference. My memory isn't as perfect as I would like it. Sorry for the confusion!

    --

    Yes and no. Trying to go unnoticed from casting Psychic Contact is a matter between the Adept's arcane test result and the Subject's Second Sight. Establishing mental contact is a matter between the Adept's arcane test result and the Subject's Psychic Shield and Willpower (Self-Discipline). So, the Subject's Psychic Shield isn't tested twice.

    In summary:

    (1) The Adept is attempting to establish mental contact with the Subject. The Adept makes only one Psychic Contact roll against TN 7 + Familiarity*, then the Subject's Psychic Shield, then the Subject's Willpower (Self-Discipline). If the Adept meets or exceeds all three criteria, then mental contact is established.

    * If the Adept fails this roll, then the arcanum fails to cast at all. No other rolls need to be made.

    (2) The Adept is trying to go unnoticed. The Narrator makes a secret Second Sight (Sense Psychic Contact) test on behalf of the Subject against the Adept's arcane test result**. If the Second Sight test meets or exceeds the Adept's arcane test result, then the Subject is aware of the attempt.

    ** Against other arcana, the Adept would make an additional roll using their Psychic Shield. Then, the Narrator compares the Subject's Second Sight test result against TN 11 or the Adept's Psychic Shield result (whichever is greater).
    Last edited by Sentinel Ark; 07-03-2018 at 04:14 AM. Reason: Fixed errors.

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