Why the hell are psychics assumed to be "science fiction"? Like it's crazy to me
Whenever you try and pitch "magic" to a scifi setting the justification is always something like "nanotechnology" and while that shit can be pretty handwavey there's at least a pretense to a justification there. But then you suggest psychics and people just take them in scifi wholesale with no further elaboration.
Like how!? How is a bunch of electromagnetic pulses going off inside a squishy soft tissue thing inside my skull going to reach out and tamper with the laws of physics around me? What is the justification here? You literally may as well just throw in regular old "magic" given it's about as sensible.
And if you try and put psychics in a fantasy setting people sperg out and act like they don't belong. Again: because they're "too scifi". Like what is even the "science" part of them!? There is practically no justification for psychic powers outside of "the mind is a mysterious thing". I mean come on!
>And if you try and put psychics in a fantasy setting people sperg out and act like they don't belong
When you say "people", are you referring to people who you have actually seen do this in real life, or are you speaking about hyperbolic neckbears on 4chan?
i think its that when you say 'science fiction' it feels like theres some hard barrier there. Theres a limit and that makes it seem more understandable, you can grasp it more.
Magic has a soft barrier where its like 'idk i aint gotta explain shit cause its magic'. Theres no real limit and I feel like more writers would fall into bad patterns where they just say "oh and then he cast some spell and was done with his problems because magic". Not saying it doesnt happen in sci fi stuff but the writers kind of have to give some context for how they got that super virus for example.
I've been in at least two D&D games and both of them decided to make crybaby complaints about Psionics- none of which were very good, so yeah it's not just a /tg/ thing that was made up.
Honestly the only thing I can think of for not allowing psychics in fantasy shit is if you have magicians that can do telepathy and telekinesis and shit already, just making it redundant more than "out of place in the genre".
It's a hold over from when "the mind is a mysterious thing" WAS sufficient scientific justification. Science knows a whole lot more about the mind and the brain now than it did a hundred years ago when pulp adventures featured psychics alongside all of the other trappings of science fiction, and even though science has moved on, psychic powers have long-since cemented their place in the lexicon of images associated with science-fiction as a genre.
Has anybody here ran a pseudoscience flavored high fantasy setting with psionics, orgone, astrological divination, Lysenkoist biomancy, Vedic airplanes, water-powered perpetual motion machines, brainwashing, hypnosis, memetics, subliminal messages, phrenology, crystal healing, health bracelets, meridian points, or acupuncture?
That shit's no different from alchemy, it's just not as far removed from us on the scientific timeline.
Because a lot of what people consider classic scifi was from the 60s and 70s when people thought there would be psychics because of the powers of the rational mind unlocked through hippy bullshit and/or drugs. Turns out no. But its traditional at this point so it gets grandfathered into a lot of stuff.
I once played in a friend's homebrew setting where mind-reading was explained as interpreting the electrical signals in someone's brain and telekinesis was something about electromagnetic fields. It's been a while, I can't remember the specifics.
As for scifi "magic" basically all you have to do is say it's either chemicals, electricity or just put some piece of technology on someone's head and nobody really questions it.
You don't seem to understand the amount of time, money and man hours that went into researching psychic phenomena within the last hundred years. Google "Stargate Project" and then realize that the psychic arms race that started in WWII outlasted the Cold War.
But not this.
Psi powers are grandfathered in, just like FTL from the days back before Einstein's Relativity rained on the parade. They experienced a resurgence in the 70s, partly due to hippies and new age stuff, but primarily because word got out about the Russian psi experiments which made SF writers with hokey old ideas for ESP stories gathering dust very happy.
Psionics are generally framed as either tied to evolution or genetic engineering which makes them dubiously more scientific than magic.
I love me some swords & psionics fantasy.
If it's magic, or at least another flavor thereof, I'm fine with it.
It just rubs me the wrong way when someone talks about psionics being 'internalized' and magic being 'externalized'.
>What is sorcery
>What is memorizing spells
>What is the weave of magic
I can't really understand why any sort of difference has to be made, outside of a 'fuck you, now you have to buy two of every protective item to protect against psionics', which is in my opinion just plain bad game design.
>It just rubs me the wrong way when someone talks about psionics being 'internalized' and magic being 'externalized'.
I'm actually pleased with how 5E went with it.
>Those whose minds are touched by the Far Realm are twisted and turned, reshaped in ways that were never meant to be. They are “awakened” to the cosmic underpinnings that dictate the form and nature of reality. It is the equivalent of a two-dimensional creature suddenly discovering the existence of the third dimension. They see possibilities, options, and connections that are unfathomable to those with a more limited view of reality.
>The mistake that many make is assuming that “the Far Realm” is an accurate description of what lies on the other side of the tear. It is not a world, in truth, but the void in which the world exists. It is outside, not “next door.” A mind that traverses it sees reality from the perspective of an outsider, allowing one to consider the structure, rather than merely the contents.
>It is this that fundamentally separates the mystic from the wizard. The wizard observes the rules of the world and applies his reason to them, striving to understand how to use them to his advantage. By manipulating certain materials, sounds, and movements, he invokes the rules that govern reality and uses them to achieve his desired result. The mystic, however, has no need of such roundabout methods. Instead of invoking the rules, she flouts them. She sees how reality is structured, and, rather than playing within its rules, she reaches out and restructures it. Rather than use the rules to create an effect that allows her to fly, she simply alters the way reality perceives her person so that nothing prevents her from taking to the air.
Anon, I don't know what science fiction you've been reading but I can't recall the last psychic I encountered. But then again, I like
TLDR: Stop reading shitty scifi and read some Stross instead.
One of the most prominent science fiction editors believed in psychics, and so they basically got made a part of a lot of golden age SF.
Plus rampant media coverage and the parawhatsit people going on about how telekinesis was totally real.
It's an old-people-from-the-cold-war thing.
>also psionics are literally as core to D&D as the druid
Generally /tg/ probably agrees with OP. There are many voices here talking about how fantasy and scifi are the same thing and how more fantasy settings should have psionics and aliens. In fact, I suspect, that most of the people that OP are referring too are actually the majority of tabletop gamers in the world, and the reason for why you don't see more overlap between the genres.
Part of it is also that people tend to think of psychic powers as something fairly modern. Even though the idea of seers goes back to the dawn of time, people didn't start talking about THE POWERRR OF THE MIIIIIND for a while.
>Honestly the only thing I can think of for not allowing psychics in fantasy shit is if you have magicians that can do telepathy and telekinesis and shit already, just making it redundant more than "out of place in the genre".
Always my issue. In most games, the magic guy can do everything the psionic guy can, and there is not much of a point to distinguishing them in setting. They are both just wizards.
For legacy reasons. Also, whereas magic was historically framed as some mystical, all-encompassing force that obeys rules other than those of the earthly realm, psionics are usually explained in terms of quasi-physical causation.
The notion of the mind as we understand it is a fairly recent development. Yes, throughout history, people belived they could influence objects and people through the use of their "mind", but not necessarily in the sense that you are literally using your brain to project some kind of force that manipulates reality in deterministic fashion.
Psychics implies that science or some mechanic of evolution unlocked our capabilities to manipulate the material plane by thought alone.
Magical power is not exclusive to the mind, it can be drawn from demons, ritual, or inter dimensional beings.
Any sufficiently complicated technology is indistinguishable from magic. So yeah sure, it's basically magic. Why is that such an issue? Our hobbie is full of nonrealistic stuff anon.
Like so many people already said in this thread, psychics are a staple of science fiction because:
>1) Grandfather's clause
They have been part of the genre for a long time . The "telepathic spacemen" is a very know archetype, from Spock to Superman the idea that aliens would be more "evolved" than humans, and therefore have more advanced minds was almost omnipresent until certain time ago.
>2) There's been had real research about it until some 30 or so years ago.
The ideas of telekinesis, telepathy and remote viewing has been studied for some time. And like the warmongers fuckers that humanity is, they decided to try to use it for war. Both CIA and KGB tried their hand at creating psychic spies during the Cold War, luckily they never succeeded. Or at least it's what they say...
>>What is sorcery
>>What is memorizing spells
>>What is the weave of magic
Things outside of yourself
>I can't really understand why any sort of difference has to be made, outside of a 'fuck you, now you have to buy two of every protective item to protect against psionics',
Fluff. Unless you're idea of protection against magic involves Planar bullshit.
Psychics are assumed to be science fiction due to their general themes, and just having a history of being used as such. In truth they're no less fantastic than any wizard, in practice they're often treated as the "next evolutionary step". My favorite example comes from the Earthbound series.
It comes down to flavor. The 'standard' alien is a reedy, frail thing with a huge, developed brain, a physical representation of what some people think the end result of all our technological advancements are. Telepathy (direct mind-to-mind contact), telekinesis (moving stuff by thought), etc., these are extreme cases of the mind overcoming the limits of the body and the world around it.
It's just a way of showing how your aliens/characters are more mentally advanced than some other author's.
Monks are forces of Will and and a body that goes beyond the bounds of man's capabilities thanks to determination and discipline. His supernatural abilities are focused inward on the further honing of this body and spirit he built with his own dedication and any outward force he applies on the universe is just him directing the energies already present within him and the universe as according to his whims.
A psionic is just some fag who was born with weirdo genes that let's him pick up shit sith his brain.
Most of the Psionic lore implies Psions are people who just push their mind to point of surpassing the bounds of human capabilities through determination, knowledge, and discipline.
They are pretty much mental monks.
Psychic stuff was actually a field of science for a while, because the government heard that that shit might be real, and if it was, they wanted it to kill commies with.
As such, it's not much of a leap to say "well, turns out they were actually right," at least not any more than it is to say "well, turns out Einstein was actually wrong" as one of the core assumptions of a setting.
Nanomachines are actually just as bullshit, the idea just hasn't been thoroughly discredited yet, so you don't put it in the same box as FTL travel and Psychics.
>read some Stross instead.
Merchant princes - 6 tomes and counting about psychic planeswalkers
The Laundry - another half dozen books about magic being a branch of math
Yeah about that...