If the block 2 blocks above either a sticky piston or a regular piston is powered, the piston will extend. This occurs regardless of any block orientations (Piston/Lever/RS Torch) or the block being powered. If a piston receives an update and the block 2 above is powered, the piston will extend. If the block 2 above is removed and the piston is updated, the piston will retract. Redstone torches and observers 2 blocks above, however, will be able to update pistons on their own.
This works regardless of gamemode.