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3.5 Item creation rules specifically call out Eldritch Blast a having no psionic analog, and thus psionic characters cannot create or assist in creating items that use that class feature as a prerequisite, as per the Magic Item Compendium.

However the 3.0 Arch Psion (still valid in 3.5 per update rules) actually has an Energy Discharge High Psionic ability that is a ray attack.

Perhaps a very inefficient way of crafting such an item, but viable?

Thus is the Arch Psion's Psionic Energy Discharge sufficiently similar to the Warlock's Eldritch Blast for item creation purposes and why of why not?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ So far as I can tell, but one magic item — gauntlets of eldritch energy (Magic Item Compendium 102) (5,000 gp; 0.5 lb.) — can only be created if an eldritch blast is used in the process. Is that accurate? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 27, 2023 at 22:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't recall about the item offhand, but that is what I'm trying to figure out. Obviously it could be made a DM-fiat, just looking to see if it's a possibility or not rules wise first. I suppose the same could be asked of spellfire, or similar abilities, though those are not of interest to me. \$\endgroup\$
    – nijineko
    Commented Sep 27, 2023 at 22:33

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Ultimately, they did not provide any guidance—much less a hard-and-fast rule—on what counts as “sufficiently similar,” but I certainly don’t think there’s much argument that psionic energy discharge and eldritch blast are.

  1. Fluff counts for this kind of thing, and the fluff on these two could not be more dissimilar. A warlock’s eldritch blast is an arcane attack fueled by the warlock’s pact, an “eldritch power, using baleful magical energy.” Psionic energy discharge doesn’t have any of that, because no psionic class has any of a warlock’s fluff—couldn’t have, even. The nature of psionics is rather fundamentally opposed to anything like a warlock’s pact. Psionic power comes from within, psionic energy discharge especially.

  2. Mechanically, these two abilities share very little. They are both rays that do hp damage... and that’s about it. Psionic energy discharge is a supernatural ability; eldritch blast is a spell-like ability. Psionic energy discharge has a range of 400 feet + 40 feet/level; eldritch blast has a range of 60 feet. Psionic energy discharge does 1d4 damage/arch psion level + 1d4 damage/power point invested; eldritch blast deals 1d6 to 9d6 damage based on warlock level. Eldritch blast accepts eldritch essence and blast shape invocations; psionic energy discharge has its “augmentation” option but that’s it.

  3. When Magic Item Compendium says eldritch blast has no psionic analogue, that is the best information we have on what counts as “sufficiently similar” to it—nothing does. It is a unique ability, and it isn’t psionic. Even discounting the arch psion—which was presented in a 3.0e supplement that Magic Item Compendium might not have considered—the archmage has a feature similar to psionic energy discharge, arcane fire, and that isn’t good enough for eldritch blast requirements. The main difference between arcane fire and psionic energy discharge is that arcane fire is, ya know, “arcane”—and since eldritch blast is too, that makes arcane fire closer to eldritch blast than psionic energy discharge is. If arcane fire cannot meet eldritch blast requirements—and it cannot—there seems to be no hope for psionic energy discharge.

I do not think any DM would ever accept this argument. I certainly would not. A DM might allow some method of creating a psionic analogue to an item that requires eldritch blast, but it won’t be through Magic Item Compendium or this argument—it will just be a houserule, because the DM agrees that the psionic character ought to be able to create (something effectively identical to) the item.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ That was more or less my thinking, but I like to get second and occasionally third opinions. Thank you for your input. \$\endgroup\$
    – nijineko
    Commented Sep 27, 2023 at 22:52

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