Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Freelancer Aspirations: Battlemind Basics

In the April/May 2012 pitch window for DDI, I submitted roughly a half-dozen pitches for articles. Some of them are things I may still get around to writing on my own (Vestige Pact Hexblade and psionic item sets, I'm looking at you). One of the pitches in that batch represented my most ambitious solo piece of gaming writing to date, an article for the (Class) Basics series on battleminds.

Despite some of the ridicule the class got right after its release, I have a thing for battlemind characters because I like characters who are tough. I also liked the challenge of picking the limited number of powers to deal with a plethora of situations. There are people - including a friend of mine around here - who strongly dislike psionic characters in D&D games, feeling that it mixes science fiction into their fantasy. It's an argument that I'm sympathetic to, and would probably even accept about battleminds if it weren't easy to portray one as somebody who doesn't know they're using psionic abilities.

When this article was rejected, they rightly called me out on a number of grammatical errors that I've since caught & cleaned up. The editorial team's other comments were that this article didn't excite them to play a battlemind, nor did it offer enough strategy and tactics to help play one effectively. They also felt like many of the recommendations were too obvious. It did get noted that the Basics articles are among the hardest to write.

I found it interesting that this would have been the first of the Basics articles that had no new mechanical content. I'd specifically inquired about creating a power or two that could be used as a melee basic attack without the expenditure of a power point, and was told not to.

I think that the piece is solid (especially after cleaning up the grammatical errors that never should have crept through to a final submission), and present it here for your downloading and viewing pleasure.

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