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While researching an answer to this question I asked, I came across the hero Raven, who has precognition (I was hoping her character info might shed light on my postcog dilemma). While reading about her I took note of the Trance advantage which states:

Through breathing and bodily control, you can slip into a deep trance. This takes a minute of uninterrupted meditation and a DC 15 Awareness check. While in the trance you add your Awareness rank to your Stamina rank to determine how long you can hold your breath and you use the higher of your Fortitude or Will defenses for resistance checks against suffocation (see Suffocation, page 170). Poison and disease effects are suspended for the duration of the trance. It requires a Perception check with a DC equal to your Awareness check result to determine you’re not dead because your bodily functions are so slow. You are aware of your surroundings while in trance and can come out of it at any time at will. You cannot take any actions while in the trance, but your GM may allow mental communication while in a trance.

1) Do you suffocate while tranced or use it to avoid other instances of suffocating?

2) What else does it do other than suspend disease and poison?? (other than "playing possum") ie When would you use trance when you are not poisoned or diseased?

It just seems that there are easier ways to avoid poison and diseases than going into a trance (obviously not accounting for the Role play reasons you might want Trance). And I am wondering if this is more for character flavor than any real mechanical advantage as it's not the most optimal way to avoid poison and disease. You basically put yourself into a coma, making you an easy target. Taking immunity to poison and disease would allow you to be active while avoiding those 2 conditions. So while I dont expect there to be any other uses of Trance, I am just trying to learn as much as I can about the advantage and its possible uses.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Your second question doesn't appear to be about how it functions. Is it related in an unobvious way? \$\endgroup\$ Jun 28 '15 at 6:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie I feel it is about how it functions, "any other application" would imply "what are the other uses of this advantage". or what if I phrased it thusly; "What else does it do other than suspend disease and poison?" \$\endgroup\$
    – MC_Hambone
    Jun 28 '15 at 6:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ It just seems that there are easier ways to avoid poison and diseases than going into a trance (obviously not accounting for the Role play reasons you might want Trance). Maybe the hang up is in the Title question? Perhaps I should edit the title to be "What are the uses of Trance?" \$\endgroup\$
    – MC_Hambone
    Jun 28 '15 at 6:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ That phrasing would be a bit more understandable... However, it doesn't prevent the reader from wondering "why do you think it should do anything else?" Pre-emptively answering that may be worthwhile. Yes, perhaps asking "What is Trance actually for?" would capture what you're going for better? \$\endgroup\$ Jun 28 '15 at 6:50
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Honestly, it's an artifact of earlier editions. In 1E, where it was introduced as a Feat, there was not a convenient immunity power. For whatever reason, it's been kept through the editions without any real update on how to use it. Personally, I'd argue for it giving all sorts of conditional modifiers such as bonuses to will saves versus mental attacks (composing your mind for defense) or the like.

In summary, it functions exactly as you stated when quoting the text of the Advantage. Yes, there are some powers that completely outstrip it, but honestly, you could say the same for things like Ricochet (replaceable by Indirect 1 without having to worry about the number of bounces) or Super-Movement (replaceable in almost every circumstance with Flight 1 with some small Limit to account for only being able to fly up walls, etc).

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