Amalthea the Phrenic Slayer, by Gordon Napier

slayer2slayer1Amalthea the Phrenic Slayer and Elf Attack, by Gordon Napier

As a player who primarily rolls fighting classes, I’ll admit that I don’t know much about the field of psionics. It’s a pure mental discipline, involving telekinesis, arcane- and matter-manipulation, Force-choke, mind-reading, and similar powers (I’m fairly certain a lot of Star Wars Extended Universe authors base their understanding of the Force on fantasy psionics. That’s not a compliment.). While some psions use their skills primarily for offense and support, others use their skills to enhance their martial prowess. From what I understand, fighting psions are able to use their powers to improve their combat aptitude, enhance their weaponry, or hinder their foes’ performance.

I like that Amalthea’s psionics aren’t evident in either of her portraits. Without caster’s robes or ioun stones orbiting her her head, there’s really nothing to distinguish our heroine from the standard fighter or swashbucker. Verily, the only reasons I know she’s a psion are the Phrenic title and association with the Ultimate Psionics game from Dreamscarred Press. I’m curious to know if she uses her psionics overtly, or merely tweaks her skills and her enemies’ performance to give herself a subtle advantage.

slayer3slayer4Though there are minor differences in our heroine’s armor in the first and second pic, I rather like the differences and what they tell us about Ama since the first pic. Firstly, she’s changed armor since the initial portrait. The chain mail is a slightly better make in the second pic, perhaps even masterwork. Where the links in the hem of her hauberk are unguarded in the first image, in the second there’s a leather or cloth trim to keep links from breaking off from the edges. I noticed as well that the sleeves on her chain shirt are slightly shorter, likely for improved weapon handling. Her leather jerkin has changed as well, a heavier leather with segmented spaulders rather than cloth bindings. Additionally, I like that Ama has swapped the frilly sleeves for leather bracers, offering that much more protection for her arms and eliminating the risk of her cuffs snagging on something. The ensemble provides excellent layered protection without hindering her flexibility or movement in combat.

slayer5While I’m not a fan of heeled boots in combat, it should be noted that Amalthea’s heels are fine: the pointed toes identify them as riding boots, and heeled boots were invented with stirrups in mind. Additionally, the split in her chain mail and arming shirt are designed for riding, allowing her to sit in the saddle without her skirt bunching up. Just as crucial is Ama’s snappy hunting cap, for keeping the sun and weather off her head while riding and traveling. All in all I found this an effective ensemble for a dapper, traveling adventuress in any fantasy realm.

Huge thanks to Gordon for letting me borrow Amalthea for the blog. Please take time to check out his other online galleries. Thanks as always for reading, folks! Take care and stay awesome!

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