“Come here, boy! Oh I know you think this place dark and smells bad, and you don’t know why your mother handed you off to me. That sulfur you smell? Demon root. It’s dark because it’s a potion of the Hunter’s Skin that would make you all but invisible, but the ingredients hate the light and refuse to work till I make it dim for them. That bubbling cauldron next to you? Essence of the Golem. Gives a man or woman the strength of the Stone itself – don’t touch! Right now it would tear your arm clean off and consume it as a snack. Hrmm… your mother said you were smart, I hope for your sake she didn’t lie to me, boy. I’m getting old and it is time to find an apprentice and if you don’t blow yourself up in the few years, I might, MIGHT, teach you the secrets I have pried from plants and herbs, blood and bone, to place a piece of the old magic in a bottle. Wizards and their kind, Bah! Flashy claptrap. No staying power. Can’t sell a spell if they aren’t there, but I – I can pour courage on command, sell it by the flask, charge what the fool “heroes” can pay. That’s the real magic. What’s that – just money? Hahaha, *coughs*, haha. Boy, magic may make the sun rise, but money makes the world go round. Now, let’s see if you survive longer than the last one.”
The Toiler works the basics of herbs as they are, thus preparing basic healing droughts and needed poisons for pesticides more often than for human use. Toilers also know the basic of Harvesting the Herbs needed for the work they do. even without the Gardening skill they are allowed to pick herbs but once picked they can’t be replanted.
As magic has begun to return, plants are among the first to gain new magical properties as they are part of the living world of Altera. Brewers learn to condense these magics down into creating magical protectives along with better healing and faster acting poisons.
Applying the principles of distillation yet again increase the potency of both healing and protectives but allows the Alchemist the ability to make vials of magic so potent that they can be placed in clay pots and thrown at the enemy to deliver magical effects upon breaking.
Beyond mere purification and increased potency, the true alchemist has begun to enhance the formulas with the proper mixture of other herbs and substances. This allows for a new array of effects and potency.
Master of Secrets
Herbs are part of life as are humans. The magic that flows through humans and the magic that flows through herbs are not that different and one can enhance the other. Master alchemists deal with very powerful brews as well as magic that goes to the very nature of humans’ connection with this world.
At its most basic alchemy is the craft of taking raw plants, harvesting them, and turning them into useable goods. Alchemy is mechanically divided into two categories. Alchemists purchase Production Points (PP) which is the raw ability to create goods. Alchemists also purchase skill tiers which is their understanding of Alchemy and ability to create increasingly complex substances. These are bought independently of each other so it is entirely possible to have someone have a research specialist with tier 5 alchemist but does not have enough production to make more than the most simple of substances. It also allows for someone to have very high PP and low tier which would be more like a factory worker or commercial alchemist who can turn out extremely high quantities of basic substances.
Alchemical substances are:
Blade Poison – must be applied to a edged weapon or arrow. 1 Minute of focus to apply each dose. Must have Tier 1 Alchemy to apply.
Draught– A drinkable liquid that can be taken directly from a vial or mixed into a small amount of liquid. See rules for mixing substances below. Must have Tier 1 Alchemy to mix. No Alchemy required to take directly from the vial.
Contact Poison – must be applied to a surface or item. Contact poisons must be phys-reped with a thin coating of vaseline or other obvious substance. There are highly exotic recipes and herbs that may allow a contact poison to be phys reped by the tag only but those must be discovered in play. Must have Tier 3 Alchemy to apply.
Salve – a poultice or ointment that can be applied to treat a specific condition. Requires Tier 1 Alchemy and 1 minute to apply.
Thrown – a recipe that is in a specially crafted vial designed to break on impact. Must have Small Ranged (Thrown) and Alchemy 1 to use.
Alchemical substances normally fall in the following types:
Healing – heals or otherwise treats a specific condition
Poison – Causes a negative condition to the target
Enhancement – Provides some benefit or protection
Wounding – Causes direct immediate harm to the target
Recreational – Taken by some for a debatable good time.
Other – Some things just don’t fit neatly into a category.
Alchemical recipes are In Play items that can be copies with Alchemical PP. Each recipe has a description of the substance, ways it can be applied, PP cost, Monetary cost in copper, and a list of In Play herbs that can offset the cost if they are used. Using herbs in this manner consumes the herbs in the process. The herb tags must be turned into plot at the time of production.
Characters who have the Alchemy skill at character creation start with 3 crafting recipes and can purchase additional recipes from their starting money.
Herbs are represented by plant phys-reps with in game tags attached. Anyone with Craft: Gardening can identify basic herbs and harvest the plant such that it can be replanted and remain healthy. Druid 1 or Alchemy 1 allows a herb to be harvested without Craft: Gardening however doing so damages the plant so it can not be replanted later.
Herb tags are always double sided. The name of the herb will be on both sides and on the left of the tag. One side will have information related to Alchemy and the production properties of the plant such as healing, poison, salve, draught, recreational, etc. Each of these will also have a numerical value next to them 1-10 reflecting how much potency they have for that given aspect. That number is always representative of how many coppers can be offset in a proper recipe. How different herbs interact with each other must be discovered in play. Any specific herb can only be used for one type of cost reduction even if it has multiple needed properties. Additional herbs always stack with each other.
On the reverse side is the herbs Druidic properties of the various plants. This will list more mystical or physical correspondences such as vines, thorns, beauty, itching, soothing, hardy, etc. How these various properties interact with Druid Magic must be discovered in play.
Herbs can be bought with starting money at their component value.
Commonly found herbs and plants:
These are herbs that will reliably be found around each game to some degree.
Herb Name Known properties Physical description
|Gilled Frond||Healing (1), Salve (1)||A frond plant with blue tinted leaves.|
|Sapstick Reed||Blade Poison (1)
Contact Poison (1)
|A tall grass|
|Ember Eyes||Recreational (1), Contact Poison (1)||A vine with small red flowers|
|Blushing Violet||Poison (1), Enhancement (1)||A small flowering shrub|
|Tarmeren||Wounding (1), Draught (1)||A small thorny seed pod|
Each recipe has the substance name, the tier requirement, the type of substance created, PP, Monetary cost, Effect, and the suggested recipe. The recipe does not *need* to be followed and these can all be made without herbs however the herbs make it cheaper as stated above. When a substance has multiple types the PP and monetary parts will be listed as xx/xx/xx with the amounts in the order listed under “type”.
Name: Liquid Resolve (Recreational)
Tier Requirement: 1
Recipe: Powderize, mix, and then ferment one parts Ember Eyes for recreation and one part Tarmeren for poison. Allow to sit then enjoy.
Name: Forgiving Oil (Healing)
Tier requirement: 1
Effect: Heal Wound 1
Recipe: Mix two Gilled Frond prepared healing and one Gilled Frond prepared for salve with inert agents into a until a thick paste forms.
Name: Instant Brawler (Enhancement)
Tier requirement: 1
Effect: Strength +1
Recipe: Crush one Blushing Violet for enhancement with two Tarmeren for draught. Dilute with simple water and flavor to taste.
Name: Gentle Rest (Poison)
Tier Requirement: 1/2/3
Type:Draught/ Blade Poison/Contact Poison
Effect: Target is under a “Sleep” effect
Recipe: Inducing artificial sleep is a delicate process and it is key to keep proper ratios in mind lest the subject awaken prematurely.
The most simple of these are poisons applied to a blade. Mix two Blushing Violets for poison and one Sapstick Reed for blade poison. Reduce over low heat until a thick sticky paste forms.
This can be made into an Draught poison by mixing three Blushing Violets for poison and three Tarmeren for draught. Mixing into coffee may help to mask the bitter taste as well as being an ironic delivery method for a such a poison.
Finally this can be made into a useful contact poison with four Blushing Violets for poison, three Ember Eyes for contact poison, and two Sapstick Reeds for contact poison. Reduce over low heat and then mix with a carrier agent to reconstitute the paste to a more applicable consistency.