Technomancers of the Really Wild West 2: Edisonades

Not so long ago I noted on Facebook and Twitter that in the Really Wild West, the most common kinds of technomancers are Cartogramancers, Edisonades, Lovelacers, Telethurges, Teslics, and the Prophets of John Moses Browning.

I thought it might be fun to examine those ideas. I started with the one I’ve used the most, cartogramancer. Now its time to look at the Edisonade.

(Art by LaCozza)


Edisonades are inspired by one of the most famous living technomancers, Thomas Edison. Many can trace their training back to Edison himself–usually not from instruction directly from the Wizard of Menlo Park, but having learned from those who worked at Menlo or Edisons current facility (as of 1891) in Fort Meyers, Florida.

Edisonades are often seen as the “best” technomancers by the general public, due in large part to their continuation of Edison’s work in the theosophic value of sound, electricity, and data recording. They are also often seen as arrogant and too business-oriented to be trusted by common folk. While neither of these generalizations are actually rooted in the techniques of the Edisonades, they are widespread enough impact how most people react to these technomancers.

Many Edisonades try to also try to be inventors, seeing that as part of the Edison tradition, but their success rate is no greater than any population of educated, scientifically savvy people.

Technomancer Alternate Class Feature: Edisonade

An Edisonade can convert any damaging spell they cast to do electricity or sonic damage. If casting a cantrip that does electricity or sonic damage (including those that normally do some other damage type which they convert with this class feature), the Edisonade adds their class level +1d6 per 3 class levels to the damage done for spells with a single target, and add half their level +1d4 per 3 class levels for spells with an area or multiple targets.

This focus on energy types and manipulating them comes at a cost in other technomancy expertise. An Edisonade has one fewer spells known at every spell level.

Edisonade Magic Hack

A character with the Edisonade alternate class feature can select the following magic hack in place of a standard magic hack.

Playback (Su): An Edisonade with this magic hack can record and playback video and audio using their spell cache. The playback can be seen and heard by anyone able to see and hear the Edisonade. They can record up to 1 hour/level of audio and visual and play it back if they choose to do so in advance, though if they exceed a total of 1 hour/level of recorded material, some older recording must be erased. For any specific detail to be revealed in their playback, the first time they attempt the playback they must make an Engineering check with a DC equal to the Perception check DC to notice the detail when it first happened. The total recording time that can be stored can be divided into multiple recordings, but each recording uses at least 5 minutes of capacity.

An Edisonade can attempt to playback up to 1 minute of audio-visual they experienced but did not think to record at the time. This is always fuzzier, less perfect recordings, and the Engineering check DC to reveal any detail is equal to 10 + the DC of the Perception check to notice that detail when it first happened. this check can only be attempted once for any given moment. If the Edisonade wishes to keep this playback beyond a single viewing, it counts against their total stored recording time.

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About Owen K.C. Stephens

Owen K.C. Stephens Owen Kirker Clifford Stephens is a full-time ttRPG Writer, designer, developer, publisher, and consultant. He's the publisher for Rogue Genius Games, and has served as the Starfinder Design Lead for Paizo Publishing, the Freeport and Pathfinder RPG developer for Green Ronin, a developer for Rite Publishing, and the Editor-in-Chief for Evil Genius Games. Owen has written game material for numerous other companies, including Wizards of the Coast, Kobold Press, White Wolf, Steve Jackson Games and Upper Deck. He also consults, freelances, and in the off season, sleeps. He has a Pateon which supports his online work. You can find it at

Posted on November 19, 2020, in Game Design, Starfinder Development and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

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