Okay, BIG project below, warning!
I tried to do a write-up on things I'd give the Mind Melter. I had several design goals in mind:
1. Bring the Mind Melter, power-level-wise, on par with the other "caster" IFWs.
2. Do so with unique abilities that aren't duplicate-able via MARS.
3. Try not to create new abilities out of whole cloth; stick to established lore as much as possible.
So with that in mind, what I ended up doing was going through the original Palladium core book and finding psionic abilities that didn't have a clear analog in the SW power set and turn those into IFW abilities for the Mind Melter. I priced them as accurately as I could using mainly the SPC and SR as guides; I encourage others to check my math. Okay, here goes - what follows is on top of the existing Mind Melter presented in Savage Rifts:
• Hypnotic Suggestion
: A Mind Melter can subtly drop a verbal suggestion into speech with someone as long as the person can understand what the Mind Melter is saying. The victim must make a Smarts roll, and if the roll fails, the victim will carry out the suggestion or feel the way the Mind Melter wishes them to feel. This can be used to coax someone to sleep, plant the idea you are trustworthy, or get them to let you into a restricted area, for example. This costs no ISP, though if the Mind Melter expends 1 ISP the Smarts roll to resist is made at -2, -4 if the Mind Melter spends 2 ISP. If the Smarts roll succeeds, then that particular suggestion cannot be attempted again, but whether it succeeds or fails the victim does not realize the Mind Melter attempted the subtle hypnosis. This ability generally does not work in combat, but only because it requires subtle verbal cues that are generally impossible in such scenarios; exceptions may apply. (Worth 3 points, basically Mind Control with a Major Limitation)
• Presence Sense
: Mind Melters are constantly aware of other minds surrounding them. Within a range equal to their Smarts, they always know the approximate location of any living creature that can think (so it applies to animals as well as humanoids, but not robots or undead). This means that such creatures gain no benefit from any level of obscurement (darkness, fog, invisibility
, etc.) and a Mind Melter does not need line of sight to affect such creatures with powers. (Worth 2 points, Awareness with a Minor Limitation)
• A Beautiful Mind
: Mind Melters can read up to 30 pages per minute and automatically remember everything they read with perfect clarity. (Worth 1 point, worth about the same as Speak Language)
: Mind Melters can sense the constant emanations of emotions that undergird the actions of most thinking creatures. Mind Melters get a +2 on Notice rolls to determine emotional states of living, thinking creatures, including whether or not they are lying. (Worth 1 point, about the same as Heightened Senses: Perception)
• Mental Might
: A Mind Melter has access to a specific set of trappings unavailable to other Psionics users. (Tough to say – ValhallaGH didn’t actually give Mystics any point value to their special Trappings, but Force of Will clearly deserves something; I’ll err on the side of caution and say this is worth 2 points)
o Pure Force of Will
: All Powers used by the Mind Melter have no visible trappings other than the direct effect. There are no magic words, no glowing energy, nothing to connect the Mind Melter to the effects created. If a Mind Melter uses Telekinesis to hurl a car through a storefront, that is obviously visible – but the Mind Melter could be sipping tea across the street. If someone specifically suspects a Mind Melter at work, they may make a Notice roll at -4 to try to figure out who’s behind the activity (and of course Detect Arcana
works just fine). Note that some effects will be obvious even if there’s no visible effect – an invisible Damage Field
will still be quite obvious as things break and people are harmed around the Mind Melter. Any power requiring a touch still requires it, though the subtle nature means that the touch could be as subtle as brushing up against someone on the street.
: For the additional cost of 2 ISP, any power that deals direct damage (such as Bolt
) can target living creatures only but ignore physical armor. Living creatures in this case get to add half their Smarts to their toughness when determining damage from such an effect.
• Versatile Masters
: Mind Melters are not defined by any one archetype – there are as many kinds of Mind Melters as there are Mind Melters themselves. At character creation, a Mind Melter may choose 3 additional Power Edges (If the Power Points Edge is chosen, it does not suffer the usual “once per Rank” restriction, meaning it could be taken multiple times, and does not count against the once per Rank restriction). (6 points)
That adds 15 points (by my valuation), bringing Mind Melters up to 40 while giving them several cool abilities that can't be duplicated by a MARS. Let me know what y'all think!