Psi Warrior Deep Dive Optimization

Psi Warrior Power Progression

Solid progression of # of uses per day 

Gains least benefit from Short Rests of any comparable power suite

Better than BM with 0 Short Rests

Worse than BM with 3+ Short Rests

Campaign-dependent

Assuming 2x Short Rests per day

Slightly inferior to BM progression at level 3-8

Equivalent to BM progression at level 9-12

Superior to BM progression at level 13+

Most games under level 10

Big power bumps at level 15 and 18

New Powers are 1-minute duration and very high impact

Key

PW – proficiency x2/day + 1x/short rest + powers/day + powers/short rest

BM – Maneuvers 4x/short rest, + 1x at 7th and 15th, + 2/day w/ Relentless

RK –  Runes variable-x/day + powers/day 

AA – Shots 2x/short rest + 2x/day w/ Ever-Ready Shot

Best, Worst

3rd level Abilities

Psionic Power: 2x proficiency/day + 1/short rest Psionic Energy Dice 

   PED are d6 at 3rd, d8 at 5th, d10 at 11th, d12 at 17th

   Save DC 8 + Proficiency + Int modifier

Protective Field – use PED + Reaction to reduce damage taken by PED + Int

      to self or ally within 30’

Significant boost to HP defense

Particularly in Tier 1 and 2

Excellent for managing concentration INCLUDING FOR ALLIES

Don’t need to remove all damage but can stay under threshold to keep DC 10

Most optimal for using to support party casters

PW has no concentration options from base class abilities before 18th level

Can acquire via Feats, Items, or Dips but high investment

May be worth it for an obscurement option if playing from range

Excellent for managing effects that end with sufficient damage

e.g. Armor of Agathys, Motivational Speech

Again cannot leverage from Fighter class abilities

Rating: Good****

Psionic Strike – 1x/turn PED + Free Action to add extra force damage (PED + Int)

Must be weapon attack within 30’

Nothing fancy and least impressive ability but thematic offensive option

Extra damage good impact at lower levels 

Scales unimpressively with level as PED increases

Can only use once on each of your turns

Applied after hit so good efficiency without wasting PED

Range limit annoying for archery

Though still excellent option which synergizes with other class abilities

Check with DM to see if it will do critical damage

RAW it’s applied “immediately after dealing damage” so ambiguous

However, force damage implies separate from weapon damage despite flavor text

“You can propel your weapons with psionic force”

If considered separate from critical, should trigger multi-attack bumps

e.g. Hex, Spirit Shroud

Rating: Poor**

TK Movement – 1x/day or use PED + Action to move object or willing creature up to 30’

 Cannot affect self

Creature must be L or smaller

Tiny object can be moved to/from hand

Requires Action so use must be dramatic and impactful

Excellent for managing front line from range

Can reposition allies in suboptimal positions without incurring OA

Can’t break allies out of Grapple as target must be “loose”

Can take allies out of harmful AOE effects that proc at start of their turn

e.g. Cloudkill, etc.

Can circumvent environmental obstacles in Combat or Exploration Phases

Great synergy with equipment (e.g. ball bearing, caltrops, oil, inhaled poisons)

Great synergy with “drop” abilities

e.g. Disarm Maneuver, Command, Fear

Great synergy with “Bag of Holding Bombs”

Check with DM to see if you can Ready it to safely pull enemy arrow/weapon attack to hand

Rating: Average***

7th level Abilities

Psi-Powered Leap: 1x/short rest or use PED + Bonus Action to gain Fly speed

          Fly speed = 2x Move until end of the current turn

1-turn Fly Speed at double movement is an excellent maneuverability option

Can’t stay aloft so be careful of falling at end of turn

Can result in tremendous bursts of speed

Enhances base Move so stacks with enhanced movement

e.g. Dash, Action Surge, Expeditious Retreat, Haste

Excellent at kiting

Excellent at taking advantage of cover

Interesting with Tabaxi Feline Agility to gain base Move 120’

Interesting with Mobile Feat or enhanced Move races (e.g. Centaur, Satyr)

Can create tremendous fall damage by grappling with enemy and flying them into the air

Flight at super high speeds can achieve significant height even at half-speed

Action Surge Dash can double your Move for one round

so even unenhanced PW can Dash 120’ and retain Action to Grapple

Can only take up to third-speed distance to avoid falling damage yourself

e.g. if Move 120’ take up 40’ for 80’ Move so 40’ left to return to ground

Can combo with Monk Slow Fall or Feather Fall spell to expend all movement up

Rating: Good****

Telekinetic Thrust: Psionic Strike also forces Str Save vs. Prone or 10’ Push

TT not stand alone but combined with Psionic Strike

Another elite party support option as Prone and Push are excellent party combo options

Prone gains melee allies attacks at advantage

Ally can Grapple to keep them down

Prone bad for archery from self or allies

Push optimizes caster persistent AOE

e.g. Web, Entangle, Sleet Storm, Stinking Cloud, Cloudkill, etc.

Can create Disengages and break Grapples

Rating: Good****

10th level Abilities

Guarded Mind: Resistance to Psychic damage + PED to end Charmed or Frightened on self

Fighter Wis Saves are bad, so immunity to Charm/Frighten is excellent defense

Avoid Races with bonuses against Charm/Frighten

e.g. Elf, Githzerai

Requirement to use Action is unimpressive, however

15th level Abilities

Bulwark of Force: 1x/day or use PED + Bonus Action to confers ?-cover to self/allies

      Int modifier # of allies within 30’ for 1 min

Amazing defense that lasts for full battle and as many uses as you need

Half-cover so won’t stack with actual cover

Ineffective against Sharpshooter and Arcane Archer Seeking Arrow

Range requirement is bothersome

Don’t overthink it, should always be first bonus action

18th level Abilities

Telekinetic Master: 1x/day or use PED to cast Telekinesis

          Bonus Action weapon attack every turn while concentrating on TK

TK has a 10-MINUTE DURATION

Fantastic control option

Will clog concentration but no such abilities in Fighter or archetype abilities

Works well with Prone from TK Thrust to keep them down

Check with DM about ambiguous wording of “restrained” and how it interacts with Prone

If Restrained condition, Prone unnecessary

General Observations

Suited for either tanking or archery

Archery somewhat problematic due to range of some powers

Build relies on Int so some MAD issues

Must have at least 14 to start and ideally 16

Dex-based build appropriate

Psychic Feats intriguing, particularly Telekinetic

May cause clog issues at 18th+ level when Telekinesis comes online

Fantastic party member with multiple abilities that can protect or otherwise aid colleagues

Optimal playstyle seems to be as support, while pumping out mid-level DPR

Most of the abilities that affect allies or enemies require sight

Either avoid Heavy Obscurement or add Blind Fighting to leverage it

Resonance with Wizard/Artificer dip (or as dip) due to Int synergy and Protective Field

Resonance with Monk dip due to enhanced maneuverability options

However Psionic Strike won’t work with unarmed attacks unless natural weapons

No early clog as suite offers only one (excellent) Reaction and requires no Bonus Actions yet

Adds Psi-Powered Leap as Bonus Action at 7th level

Starts to clog at 15th and 18th as gains 2 abilities requiring Bonus Actions

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