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Alchemist


hammersickle59

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I have a player trying to build an alchemist. He wants to make potions that have various effects on the drinker of the potion.

 

My first thoughts were either VPP for making the potions, or the summon power. We're using FRED, not 6E.

 

Currently I'm trying to build it with the summon power. Can you guys give me some examples. So far I have Summon: expanded class of beings (for the varying effects of the potion), slavishly devoted (cause its an item), extra time (6 hours),IIF (for needing a lab to build the focus). Anything I'm not thinking of?

 

For the potion itself, it would have delayed effect and OAF. Then the actual power that granted, AID ST for example. Charges.....charges never recover? Anything else?

 

Thanks guys,

 

Dean

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Re: Alchemist

 

I've used the Trigger method to define potions in the past, and it's worked fine for what I wanted. See FRED 269-270 (especially the Potion of Giant Strength), and the boxed text on FRED 255 (Delayed Effect and Trigger). My FH campaign started having potions and the like constructed using Trigger back in the 4th Ed days, without any major issues.

 

You can use the Delayed Effect method (which is somewhat similar), and I'd recommend looking at FH 281-282 for that. I like Trigger a little better, mainly because the power can be dispelled, while Delayed Effect technically can't be, though Delayed Effect has a limitation as to how many potions can be out at a given time (usually INT/5).

 

Summon's not really needed, as it's easy to declare the limitations "at casting" as being for the creation of the potion (usually rare, expendable ingredients, a long time to brew, and of course, a suitable alchemic lab).

 

JoeG

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Re: Alchemist

 

I think you're off on the wrong track. I would assume a VPP. The potions are foci, usable on others, and they may have other appropriate limitations (e.g., gradual effect). The time and location necessary to make the potions are limitations on the VPP (NOT IIF, BTW). I wouldn't do the Summons - that's something completely different.

 

If you give an example of a potion, we can write it up for you. If you say more about exactly what is necessary to create a potion, we can write that up.

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Re: Alchemist

 

Cross-posts. The trigger is another way (and in the book) - I've never gotten it' date=' myself.[/quote']

 

Yup, but the VPP would work, too, though I haven't used VPPs in my FH game since pre-4th days (with spell books and "memorizing" spells in a quasi-D&D model). It's one of the great things about Hero, there's so many paths that one can take.

 

JoeG

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Re: Alchemist

 

I'm not very fond of Delayed Effect myself. Put an Advantage on the power merely to overcome the Limitations you're putting on it? :ugly: Exactly how much are Concentration and Extra Time worth if you don't have to worry about them in combat? I'd be more in favor of Charges, since you can only have a certain number of uses prepared at any given time. Seems to model it a lot better to me. Require whatever the heck you like for the character to regain the charges in-between fights: gestures, incantations, standing on your head, using the latrine, whatever. Of course, it'd be nice to have a sort of "Charges pool" where you could split a certain number of charges between whatever different powers without needing a Framework. Maybe a non-recovering End Reserve would work better? **shrug**

 

But in any case I agree that the Delayed Effect or Charges or whatever--on top of probably Usable By Others and Focus--will be what you use for the potions. A VPP might be nice for the variety of them you can create, or a Multipower. But Summon really shouldn't be necessary. At most a small Transform could model the ability for the character to create things magical/alchemical, but only if you really feel it necessary.

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Re: Alchemist

 

A VPP, with OAF (the potion bottles, obviously), only change pool composition in a lab, and maybe an alchemy only limitation (so you can't make, like, radioactives or something) should cover it perfectly. You don't need useable on others, that's part of the Focus; you can hand it to other people, but other people can steal them from you.

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Re: Alchemist

 

Great feedback, but I remain a bit confused about one statement.

 

Tacking on trigger on a power and making it a potion is fine.....but that doesn't deal with the alchemist being able to actually create multiple different potions in his "lab". You still need either VPP or Summon.

 

So for everyone has shot down the summon idea, not sure why though. Points wise it seems too cheap, that might be one reason.

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Re: Alchemist

 

In addition to potions, I would suggest a Multipower with:

 

Detect: Chemical/Alchemical substances with Analytical

Transform: Anything into Anything

Dispel: Alchemical/Chemical SFX

 

All with a 5 minute activation time and some OAF Alchemical tools. Helps round out the 'on the fly' application of the art.

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Re: Alchemist

 

Great feedback, but I remain a bit confused about one statement.

 

Tacking on trigger on a power and making it a potion is fine.....but that doesn't deal with the alchemist being able to actually create multiple different potions in his "lab". You still need either VPP or Summon.

 

So for everyone has shot down the summon idea, not sure why though. Points wise it seems too cheap, that might be one reason.

 

Really, there isn't anything that you'd need to Summon. Just assume that there are required materials to make the potions, and that the alchemist needs some equipment to distill/blend/mix up the final potion. And with Trigger, the potion sticks around until used or destroyed. To make a different potion, the alchemist would just need to know how to make it, and have the raw materials, time, and lab to do it.

 

So, for example, it might take Aralin the Alchemist 5 hours to make a Potion of Strength (using the proper ingredients), and then he can reorganize his lab and make a Healing Salve (taking, say, another 5 hours). At the end of a long day, he has a flask of Potion of Strength, and a vial of Healing Salve. In the interests of game balance, the GM might want to rule about how many of a specific potion that the alchemist can have "on hand" before an adventure (or use Delayed Effect, which has a built-in limit).

 

You can allow the alchemist to learn his formulas in a variety of ways, based upon your setting. Depending on how you want magic to be purchased in your game, here are a few suggestions:

 

1. Buy each formula separately. This is similar to a wizard buying each of his spells separately. You pay your points for your Dispel Magic, Fireball, Mystic Defense, and so on. Points can either be the straight Real Cost, or can use a divider like in some of the published settings for FH. This is the model that I've used in my games.

 

2. Buy a VPP. Each formula would then reside in the VPP, until the character decides to switch things around. As a GM, you can assume that this represents the types of potions that he currently has his lab set up to make now, for example. As to what happens to a Healing Salve that's already been created when the alchemist switches out the lab is up to the GM.

 

3. Buy the various potion formulas as skills. This is probably how I'm going to work it in my next game. I plan on setting up a list of typical potions, and allow the characters to learn either category knowledge skills or I'll set up a "Potion Familiarity" chart (like Weapon Familiarity). Or I might do a rank system for the various potions, with an Alchemist of a certain skill rank able to make all potions of that level or lower if they have the materials, lab, and so on.

 

JoeG

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Re: Alchemist

 

Great feedback, but I remain a bit confused about one statement.

 

Tacking on trigger on a power and making it a potion is fine.....but that doesn't deal with the alchemist being able to actually create multiple different potions in his "lab". You still need either VPP or Summon.

 

Not necessarily. :) There's no maximum limit in the RAW on how many Triggered Powers you can have ready. As long as you go through the required preparations (expend END or materials, take the specified time, and so on) you can set up as many Triggered items/effects in advance as you want, including multiple different effects. Nor is there any time limit required for the Trigger to go off. A potion could stay viable for years after it's made, if you want it too.

 

Of course, each potion would need a different, distinct Power build. If you want your alchemist to be able to create different types of potions without a lot of expenditure in Character Points, you could make each potion a slot in a Multipower. Each time the character learns how to brew a new potion, he buys a new slot. OTOH if you want the alchemist to be able to brew just about any type of potion imaginable, a VPP for all possible Triggered constructs would probably be necessary.

 

So for everyone has shot down the summon idea' date=' not sure why though. Points wise it seems too cheap, that might be one reason.[/quote']

 

Summon is generally not supposed to be used for effects already defined by other Powers. For example, if you magically "summon" a sword to your hand, that's just the Special Effect of a Hand-To-Hand Killing Attack, not a use of the Summon Power. In all published examples Summon is confined to creatures or things built using the Character (or Automaton or Vehicle) rules, with Characteristics, Disadvantages, etc.

 

In theory, you could define Summon as being the result of a use of a potion, e.g. a Growth Potion "summoning" a character who's exactly the same as the one who drank the potion, only larger, stronger, etc. However, you'll have to make the Base Points in Summon large enough for however many Character Points the drinker at the time might have, as well as the Advantage to Summon a Specific Individual (the potion drinker). That's liable to be a lot more expensive than just Triggered Growth, Usable By Others. ;) Nor does it work for potions that aren't "character based," such as acid to burn through objects, clouds of anesthetic gas, or the like.

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Re: Alchemist

 

You could technically define the Summon as being a "potion spirit" - a small incorporeal being with the power to grant someone the effects of a potion, once, then vanish. That's a bit cheesy though; I'd only allow it if the VPP/Multipower solution was consuming points way out of scale with its benefit.

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Re: Alchemist

 

You could technically define the Summon as being a "potion spirit" - a small incorporeal being with the power to grant someone the effects of a potion' date=' once, then vanish. That's a bit cheesy though; I'd only allow it if the VPP/Multipower solution was consuming points way out of scale with its benefit.[/quote']

 

I'd be more likely to adjust the costs as needed for the campaign if I thought that they were out of whack.

 

JoeG

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Re: Alchemist

 

You still need either VPP or Summon.

This was well pretty well covered by the other posts. Now I get why you mentioned Summon - as a way to allow for variety. This kind of build is EXACTLY what VPP is for, so long as it's OK that the number of potions in existence at any one time is limited - that's a little conceptually strange for some builds, but commonly accepted nonetheless for characters like super-inventors.

 

You could shoehorn this concept into Summon, I guess, but Summon is really designed for bringing in an entity that acts with some independence - basically, a short-term NPC follower. There are some other uses, but this one would be a very big stretch.

 

There's no maximum limit in the RAW on how many Triggered Powers you can have ready. As long as you go through the required preparations (expend END or materials' date=' take the specified time, and so on) you can set up as many Triggered items/effects in advance as you want, including multiple different effects. Nor is there any time limit required for the Trigger to go off. A potion could stay viable for years after it's made, if you want it too.[/quote']

Does that mean that Triggered works like Uncontrolled as relates to distribution of framework points? That would make the Trigger build make more sense to me.

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Re: Alchemist

 

Does that mean that Triggered works like Uncontrolled as relates to distribution of framework points? That would make the Trigger build make more sense to me.

 

Yes.

 

If a character has a power with Trigger as a slot in a Power Framework' date=' and he sets the Trigger, he may then shift the points in the Framework to another slot. The Triggered power remains in effect, waiting to be Triggered, even though the Framework has shifted to another power (though the GM may forbid this if he feels it violates dramatic sense or would cause game balance problems). Activating the Triggered power doesn’t cause the Power Framework to switch to that slot or cut off a power currently in use through the Framework. However, after the Trigger activates, it cannot reset until the Framework is shifted back to that slot.[/quote']
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