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1 Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:53 pm

Kestrana

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Psionic Gifts ("Gifts" for short) are mental abilities that the humans of Pern have developed.  They are a result of evolution, opening up portions of the brain previously inaccessible.  In part, their development was sped up by the connection formed between firelizards/dragons and humans; because of Kitti Ping's mentasynth enhancements, dragons would only bond to humans with strong telepathic and empathic abilities.

For hundreds of years, the Weyrs conducted Searches to find children with stronger-than-average telepathic and empathic Gifts.  This resulted in further and faster development of Gifts in Weyrfolk populations than outside the Weyrs.  The Gift that most non-Weyrfolk knew about was telepathy, specifically for dragonriders, but also in the form of "Hears All Dragons" (HAD).  Most non-Weyrfolk were not aware of how the abilities worked and since they rarely showed up outside of a Weyr, there was never any reason for them to know.  A few Crafters, usually Healers, were aware of the additional Gift types because they often had to clean up the messes left behind when a new Gift manifested, but otherwise, no one talked about them much.

It was through this that the Healers developed the virus that targeted dragonriders.  They determined that there was a genetic component to those who had a combination of telepathic and empathic Gifts, or the potential for those Gifts, which was required for Impression of a dragon, and the virus was engineered to target people with that genetic quirk.  Unfortunately, they didn't expect non-riders to contract the virus, so they didn't actually produce a vaccine for it.  This resulted in many of the people with these Gits being killed.  It was assumed that those were the only kind of Gifts out there and that they were now practically extinct.

10 years later, a young man developed a pyrokinetic ability and one of the anti-Weyr Lord Holders' pet Healers found out about it.  That was when further research began into psychic abilities began and they obtained a label: Psionic Gifts.

It took 16 years for them to identify and classify all of the Gifts.  Before long, additional (unofficial and often arbitrary) labels were applied: things like, "Useful," "Hindrance," "Offensive," "Defensive," and so on.  Those who had Gifts became known as "Psionics," or "Psis" for short (singular: "Psionic" or "Psi"). The same Lord Holders who banded together to get the Weyrs out of the way and free up land for their Holds started to turn on each other, each one trying to obtain and possess the most useful Gifts for their Holds and Crafthalls.  These additional labels varied depending on which Hold you were in.

Over the next several hundred years, Holds and Halls competed for Gifts, and some got downright lethal about it.  Some places started "breeding farms" of a sort, trying to strengthen (and in some cases, purify) the Gifts; still others started executing those with gifts deemed as hindrances or who they thought were spying on them.  The latter put an even bigger dent in the population of people with telepathic and empathic abilities since they were the most effective Gifts for spies.

As a result, many of those who developed Gifts did everything they could to conceal them so they wouldn't be rounded up (or "recruited" as the Inquisitors called it) or assassinated.  The survivors of the Weyr genocide did their best to help and protect any Gifted who came to them, although they weren't always successful.  Others were protected by their families and remained on the mainlands.

If you would like your character to have one or more Gifts, please mention it in your character application and use the names and rating numbers to quantify the Gifts.  As a general rule, people with Psionic Gifts typically have one more-powerful Gift and one or two minimally-powerful Gifts.  If you would like multiple powerful Gifts or more than two less-powerful Gifts, please talk to Kes.
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Last edited by Kestrana on Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:57 am; edited 1 time in total

2 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:27 pm

Kestrana

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Communication Gifts


Telepathy

The ability to communicate mind to mind. All dragonriders have this ability with their dragons; some telepaths are strong enough to be HAD's (Hear All Dragons).  Telepathy is the second most-common psychic ability.  There are two categories of telepathy: reception and projection.

Reception

Of the two categories of telepathy, the ability to receive other creature's thoughts is more common.  Reception comes in two forms: passive and active.  Passive reception occurs when the telepath receives the thoughts of others without searching them out.  Active reception occurs when the telepath actively seeks out the thoughts of others.  On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most powerful:

Rating Scale
PassiveActive
1NoneOnly the strongest thoughts broadcasted directly at the telepath
2Only strongest thoughts broadcasted directly at the telepathThe strongest of general broadcast thoughts
3The strongest of general broadcast thoughtsThoughts broadcast directly at the telepath
4Thoughts broadcast directly at the telepathGenerally broadcast thoughts
5Generally broadcast thoughtsThoughts broadcast at another person (not the telepath)
6Thoughts broadcast at another person (not the telepath)Strong surface thoughts
7Strong surface thoughts; must consciously block broadcast thoughtsGeneral surface thoughts and dreams
8General surface thoughts and dreams; must consciously block surface thoughtsPersonal thoughts/musings
9Personal thoughts/musingsPrivate thoughts
10Private thoughts; must consciously block reception of any thoughtsInnermost private thoughts

Projection

Projection occurs when the telepath broadcasts thoughts for others to hear.  Projection is always an active ability (it has no passive state), although it may not be a conscious action on the part of the telepath.  Power is generally rated on who the telepath can project to and the distance they can reach.

Rating Scale
Can project to:
1Only telepaths actively looking to receive a projected thought from the projecting telepath
2Telepaths actively looking for projected thoughts
3Actively receiving telepath
4Passively receiving telepath
5Any receiving telepath
6Any unshielded telepath
7Any lightly shielded telepath
8Any shielded telepath; dragon, dragonrider, firelizard, or firedragonet
9Any Weyrbred person
10Anyone, even non-telepaths

True Telepath

So-called "true" telepathy is an even mixture of projection and reception telepathy, where both skills are equally powerful.  The biggest difference between projection and reception telepaths and true telepaths is the ability to send and receive images.  Projection and reception telepaths can only transmit thoughts; in true telepathy, images can also be sent.  This is what dragonriders, dragons, and firedragonets have; firelizards also have it (to a lesser extent).

Rating Scale: 1-10 (use the Reception and Projetion scales above; whatever is the maximum rating on either scale is the rating for this ability).

Animal Telepath

Animal telepathy excludes dragons, firelizards, and firedragonets, which have a genetic predisposition for telepathy.  Animal telepathy is like a combination of telepathy, empathy, and farsight, giving the telepath a connection with animals.  Like projection empathy, it only has an active state and is measured by the things the telepath can do with it and the distance.

Rating Scale
Can:
1Sense the state of animals in a given area (i.e., if they're agitated, calm, etc.)
2Understand the sights that the target animal(s) sees
3Control what the target animal(s) looks at
4Understand the sounds that the target animal(s) hears
5Control what the target animal(s) listens to
6Understand scents that the target animal(s) smells
7Convince a single animal to do something natural (run, sleep, etc.)
8Convince multiple animals to do something natural
9Convince a single animal to do something against its nature (pick up something to examine it, move to observe someone/something, etc.)
10Convince multiple animals to do something against their nature

Empathy

The ability to receive and/or project emotions. As with telepathy, there are two categories: reception and projection.  This is the second most-common mental ability as it is highly prized among dragonriders as a key part of the requirements to form the bond necessary for Impression.

Reception

Of the two categories of empathy, the ability to receive other creature's emotions is more common.  Reception comes in two forms: passive and active.  Passive reception occurs when the empath receives the emotions of others without searching them out.  Active reception occurs when the empath actively seeks out the emotions of others.  On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most powerful:

Rating Scale
PassiveActive
1NoneOnly the strongest emotions broadcasted directly at the empath
2Only strongest emotions broadcasted directly at the empathThe strongest of general broadcast emotions
3The strongest of general broadcast emotionsEmotions broadcast directly at the empath
4Emotions broadcast directly at the empathGenerally broadcast emotions
5Generally broadcast emotionsEmotions broadcast at another person (not the empath)
6Emotions broadcast at another person (not the empath)Strong surface emotions
7Strong surface emotions; must consciously block broadcast emotionsGeneral surface emotions and dreams
8General surface emotions and dreams; must consciously block surface emotionsPersonal emotions/musings
9Personal emotions/musingsPrivate emotions
10Private emotions; must consciously block reception of any emotionsInnermost private emotions

Projection

Projection occurs when the empath broadcasts emotions for others to hear.  Projection is always an active ability (it has no passive state), although it may not be a conscious action on the part of the empath.  Power is generally rated on who the empath can project to and the distance they can reach.

Rating Scale
Can project to:
1Only empaths actively looking to receive a projected emotion from the projecting empath
2Empaths actively looking for projected emotions
3Actively receiving empath
4Passively receiving empath
5Any receiving empath
6Any unshielded empath
7Any lightly shielded empath
8Any shielded empath; dragon, dragonrider, firelizard, or firedragonet
9Any Weyrbred person
10Anyone, even non-empaths

Truth-reading

The ability to tell if another person is telling the truth or lying.  This is something of a combination of empathy and telepathy.  Although it has some power variations, it's pretty much a cut-and-dried ability: either you can or cannot tell if a person is telling true or false.  Its power varies based on the reach of the truth-reader: anything from having to physically touch their target to being able to tell from across the room, but the truth-teller must be within earshot of the person they're truth-reading.

Rating Scale
Contact requirements:
1Must be touching target AND making full and direct eye contact AND target must speak directly to truth-teller
2Must be touching target AND EITHER able to making full eye contact with target OR target must speak directly to truth-teller
3Must be making full eye contact with target AND target must speak directly to truth-teller
4Must be touching target
5Must be making eye contact with target AND within 5 feet of target
6Must be making eye contact with target AND within 20 feet of target
7Must be within 5 feet of target
8Must be within 20 feet of target
9Must be within earshot of target
10Must be able to hear what target says (no distance or contact limitation)
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Last edited by Kestrana on Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:48 pm; edited 1 time in total

3 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:36 pm

Kestrana

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Admin / Weyrlingmaster

Mending Gifts


Healing

In short, Healing is the ability to speed up the mending of injuries.  In most cases, the patient's energy is used for Healing; this leaves the patient exhausted, but leaves the healer relatively unwearied, a situation that is desirable since the healer may need to attend multiple patients in a short span of time.

Powerful healers can use their own energies to Heal.  Generally, they will only do so if the injuries are extremely severe or the patient is weak because it will leave them wearied from both channeling their own energies into the Healing and controlling those energies.

Channeling and Healing
Those healers who can use their own energies to Heal can work with channels and other healers to receive additional energies to Heal with.  In rare cases, channels can dispense energy into the patient for less powerful healers to work with.

Rating Scale
Can:
1Accurately diagnosis any injury
2Block pain
3Reduce impact of chronic conditions (e.g., allergies)
4Increase 50% healing speed of minor injuries
(superficial cuts/scrapes, 1st-degree burns, bruises, swelling, Thread-char, etc.)
5Outright heal minor injuries; increase 50% healing speed of moderate injuries
(muscular lacerations, 2nd-degree burns, fractured bones, minor Threadscore, etc.)
6Outright heal moderate injuries*; increase 50% healing speed of serious injuries
(cuts to bone, 3rd-degree burns, broken bones, Threadscore, etc.)
7Outright heal serious injuries**; preserve amputated tissue (as long as energy holds out); increase 50% healing speed of severe injuries
(internal injuries)
8Outright heal severe injuries**; reattach amputated tissue; increase 50% healing speed of critical injuries
(nerve/nervous system damage)
9Outright heal critical injuries**; increase 50% healing speed of chronic injuries
(heart damage from heart attack, scar tissue, reattached amputated tissue, etc.)
10Outright heal chronic injuries***
(returns damaged tissue to normal state - cannot regrow amputated tissue, but can restore reattached tissue to normal state)
* This can be performed using the patient's own energy, but will most likely cause the patient to slip into a coma for a few days.
** This kind of healing can't be performed by healers that must use the patient's energy because such healing requires a lot of energy and would kill the patient; it must be performed by a team of at least two channeling healers working together.
*** This level of healing can only be performed with a team of at least three channeling healers working together (depending on the severity of the injury, more may be required) and will cause the patient to go into a coma for a few days and may cause the healers to go into comas as well.  Also can only be performed on tissue where less than 25% of the affected tissue has outright died.


Non-Body Healing

This is related to healing but focuses on the mind, heart, or soul.  It is generally less draining than body healing. It is most often used to help with soothing away trauma and phobias in combination with more traditional therapy/counseling.  Non-body healing requires energy from both healer and patient.  These healing abilities are almost always found in combination with either empathy or telepathy.

Mind Healing

Of the non-body Healing talents, Mind Healing is the most common.  It is used to resolve mental traumas, typically by blocking or blurring unpleasant memories.  It can be used to resolve severe mental or behavioral problems by altering mental pathways, but this isn't a well-advertised ability; it often destroys much of the patient's personality.  Mind healing is almost always paired with telepathy, and sometimes empathy.

Heart Healing

This, along with soul healing, is almost always found with empathy.  Many empaths are also informal heart healers.  Heart healers deal with immediate emotional traumas, often grief - loss of a loved one (anywhere from a teenager's first breakup to the death of a family member); or fear - particularly fear stemming from a trauma, such as rape.

Soul Healing

Along with empathy, soul healers almost always have a certain amount of auror ability.  Soul healers target deep spiritual trauma.  These traumas are often linked with phobias and are often a result of an untreated emotional and/or mental trauma.  A soul healer is, in effect, a combination of a heart and a mind healer; they have to be able to address both the memories and the associated emotions.

Rating Scale
Can:
1Accurate identification of the source trauma
2Memory blurring
3Memory blocking
4Increase recovery speed by 50% for minor traumas/phobias
(frightening but not harmful experience, mild fear of something, etc.)
5Banish minor traumas/mild phobias*; increase recovery speed by 50% for moderate traumas/phobias
(frightening experience with minor injuries, moderate fear of something, etc.)
6Banish moderate traumas/phobias*; increase recovery speed by 50% for serious traumas/phobias
(mental/emotional trauma from moderate injuries, significant fear of something, etc.)
7OBanish serious traumas/phobias*; redirect mild behaviors*; increase recovery speed by 50% for severe traumas/phobias
(mental/emotional trauma from serious injuries, overwhelming fear of something, etc.)
8Banish severe traumas/phobias*; redirect moderate behaviors*; remove mild behaviors*; increase recovery speed by 50% for critical traumas/phobias
(mental/emotional trauma from severe injuries, paralyzing fear of something, etc.)
9Banish critical traumas/phobias*; redirect severe behaviors*; remove moderate behaviors*; increase recovery speed by 50% for chronic traumas/phobias
(trauma from critical injuries, phobias brought on by chronic exposure such as abuse, etc.)
10Banish chronic traumas/phobias, remove severe behaviors*
* These are only used in the most desperate of cases. Banishing the trauma or phobia outright prevents the patient from dealing with the phobias/traumas on their own terms, which can cause the phobia/trauma to recur in a stronger form at a later date. Redirecting behaviors can likewise backfire, causing the altered behavior to return in a more serious state. Removing behaviors entirely can damage the patient's mind and destroy or fracture their personality.
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Last edited by Kestrana on Thu Dec 11, 2014 1:36 pm; edited 2 times in total

4 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:37 pm

Kestrana

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Admin / Weyrlingmaster

Energy Gifts


Auror

Aurors are about the lowest-level Gifted in the universe: all they can do is sense or see the tidbits of energy that every living creature "sheds" - their life forces, essentially.  Generally, aurors are only useful in combination with another gift, such as channeling or healing.  In a natural disaster, for example, aurors are indispensable to rescue teams because they can spot buried people by the energy they give off.  If an auror is also a channel, a healer, or an earthshaper, they can collect the energy of other living beings for use.

Rating Scale: There is no rating scale for aurors. It is a passive ability and a person either has it or they don't.

Channel

Channels are only slightly more powerful than aurors.  They are capable of actually handling energy, rather than only observing it.  However, unless the channeling ability is also paired with auror abilities or a healing or shaping ability, they can only transfer energy from one person with one of those abilities to another person.  If paired with a communications gift, they can also channel thoughts and emotions from one person to another.

Rarely, a channel can amplify the initiating individual's energy to increase its power, but all the energy has to come from the initiator (for example, a projecting telepath with a power ranking of 3 can partner with this type of channel and feed additional energy to the channel, generating up to a level 5 projection - but the projecting telepath must focus on his or her thought projection for long enough for the channel to collect the energy and rebroadcast it).

Weather Witching

Weather witches vary in power from being able to sense a storm just over the horizon to being able to predict the weather reliably up to a week in advance to being able to alter the weather to suit needs.  Prediction is the more common and generally all that is needed: knowing a few days in advance that you're going to have three days of clear weather for a harvest means you can put the harvest off for a couple of days and not ruin your crops; or knowing that it's going to rain, you can hurry the harvest to get it in before the bad weather hits.

Manipulation of the weather is usually only used in drastic situations: a long drought or if the rain will not let up long enough to complete the harvest.  Altering the weather in one location will alter it in another location; bringing rain to a parched field will leave another location, perhaps half a continent away, without a rainstorm.  It's a delicate balance that can be easily upset, and should never be undertaken lightly.
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Last edited by Kestrana on Thu Dec 11, 2014 1:56 pm; edited 1 time in total

5 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:39 pm

Kestrana

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Admin / Weyrlingmaster

Vision Gifts


Farsight

Farsight is a pretty straight-forward Gift: the ability to see things from a distance.  It can be consciously controlled or triggered by a strong need for a person, place, or object.  Dowsing is often paired with farsight.  Strength of the Gift is measured by the distance that the seer can traverse mentally.

Foresight

The ability to see a possible future, the most probable future at the moment.  The future is malleable and a foreseen future won't necessarily occur unless nothing changes, or certain actions are taken.  Powerful foreseers can be consulted at a crossroads to determine what is most likely to happen by choosing one direction or another, assuming that nothing else changes except for what that decision affects.

Pattern-sight

The most common of the vision type Gifts, pattern-sight is the ability to see patterns that are not otherwise obvious.  For example, a pattern-seer wouldn't be much challenged by a word search puzzle.  They make excellent Technicians and Computerers.

Dowsing

Dowsing is similar to farsight, except that it can find hidden objects, things in places that farseers can't look into.  The best-known example is the ability to find water underground.  Power is measured in the complexity of the hiding-place.  It works best when paired with farsight or with a farseer since dowsers cannot see the location of the hiding place; dowsing alone is only useful the object is very nearby (or straight down in the ground, for example) or if the dowser is familiar with the surroundings of the hiding place and recognizes some landmark.  Pairing with farsight allows the dowser to "zoom out" and get a better fix on the location of the hiding place.
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6 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:41 pm

Kestrana

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Admin / Weyrlingmaster

Psychokinesis Gifts


Telekinesis

Telekinesis is the ability to move objects without touching them.  Dragons use telekinesis to help keep themselves aloft.  Kitti Ping hypothesized that the firedragonets' wingsails were so small to minimize the surface area vulnerable to Threadscore.  Some dragons have been known to use their telekinetic abilities to avoid unpleasant things, such as trundlebugs.  Power is measured by the size of the objects that can be lifted and the distance from which they can be moved.

Teleportation

This is related to telekinesis, but is the ability to move objects through null-space (better known as between.  The most common use is to send objects, such as dragons, firelizards, and firedragonets going between.  However, teleporters can retrieve objects, provided they know what the objects look like and where they are.  Teleporters can partner with farseers and dowsers to see an object to retrieve it.  Power is measured by the distance that a teleporter can send or retrieve objects.
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7 Re: Psionic Gifts on Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:42 pm

Kestrana

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Admin / Weyrlingmaster

Elemental Gifts


Firestarting

The ability to manipulate fire.  In its weakest form, a firestarter can only manipulate existing flame; they don't need much - a candle, a match - but it needs to already exist.  The most powerful firestarters can set fire to any material, regardless of its flammability.

Waterdrawing

The ability to manipulate water.  In its weakest form, a waterdrawer can only manipulate existing liquids; they don't need much - a raindrop, a snowflake - but it needs to already exist.  The most powerful waterdrawers can pull water out of any material, even air (provided that there is some level of humidity).

Earthshaping

The ability to manipulate earth.  In its weakest form, a earthshaper can only manipulate non-living material such as dirt or clay.  The most powerful earthshapers can manipulate any earthen material, including living things such as plants and trees.

Windcalling

The ability to manipulate air.  In its weakest form, a windcaller can only manipulate small amounts of air, such as protecting one's eyes from flying dust and ditr.  The most powerful windcallers can create tornadoes and affect weather by altering wind currents.
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