Psychic Paper – Steal this Item

 Posted by on May 30, 2011  Filed as: Steal this Item  Add comments  Topic(s):
May 302011

Today in the United States we are celebrating Memorial Day. We were going to delay our next article until Tuesday. However, I was recently speaking with Jared Von Hindman (the weird D&D art guy) about how release schedules are unfair internationally. We here at believe that we should all be able to watch and read the best geek content with relative equality. In the interest of international relations, please enjoy this mini article. We’ll see you again tomorrow.

Psychic Paper may appear blank to those looking at it quickly, but when presented with confidence the target will see whatever information the wielder desires. This has traditionally been used to produce instant identification documentation. The paper can appear to be a letter of note from local royalty, personally identification as a members of a merchants guild or even just a business card. Many cultures use such identification, and quick recognition can help smooth over many situations.


Due to the nature of psychic paper, its properties sometimes lead to unintended situations. The following can be used by DMs to create fun situations or jumpstart new plots, when one of their PCs employs psychic paper.

  • Individuals with powerful psionic abilities can project messages onto psychic paper, even over great distances. Doing so takes a great effort and may get intercepted by other psychic individuals or devices. For these reasons, it is generally only used in times of great need such as dire warnings or calls for help.
  • Individuals who are less than confident or who are inexperienced may accidentally show their surface thoughts on the psychic paper instead of the information they want the target to see.
  • Individuals with psionic training who are targeted with psychic paper can sometimes turn the connection back on the user, having the paper display secret information the wielder has.
  • Individuals with psychic powers may accidentally boost their powers when using the paper, getting glimpses of the future thrust upon them.

Brian Liberge

Brian Liberge is a father of one, living in Boston, MA. Introduced to AD&D at an early age, he’s continued to update with the editions, and new games. He loves home-brewed ideas, is honest to a fault, and thinks that ideas and mechanics should absolutely be shared between systems. With a B.S. Degree in Theatre Arts, a job in Information Technology, and a love of strategy gaming, he tries to bring the best of each into his new creations for StufferShack. Check out his latest book the Midgard Bestiary for 4e, available now. Profile Page / Article Portfolio

  2 Responses to “Psychic Paper – Steal this Item”

  1. The webcomic Evil Inc took the concept of Psychic Paper one further to create sentient paper that is slightly animated and can display whatever writing it wants on it. Could make for a fun monster for a wizard to encounter while trying to learn new spells or possibly even a familiar if the wizard can win it over..

  2. Demonically-possessed paper with an intelligent agenda of it’s own… much more interesting familiar than an imp!! Nice one, Darktouch.

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