Potions are primarily the province of wizards, although priests can prepare those potions relating to healing and cures. (Priests of other mythos may or may not be able to prepare such potions, depending on the spell spheres available to them.) Healing and curing potions are beyond the ken of wizards.

As with other magical items, the character must identify and gather the materials needed to brew a potion before he can begin work. The formula can be as straightforward or bizarre as the DM desires. It may require the blood of a rare creature, powdered gems, the sweat of a mare, or the breath of a dying hero.

In addition, a potion requires a number of mundane ingredients. The basic cost of these ingredients ranges from 200 to 1,000 gp. The DM should decide this based on how common the potion is, its power, and the nature of the ingredients he has specified. A potion of dragon control is a rare item of great power and so should cost the full 1,000 gp. A potion of healing is a fairly necessary item, something the DM may want to be readily available to the characters. Therefore, it should be cheap, costing no more than 200 gp.

Wizards must do more than acquire ingredients: They also need a complete alchemical laboratory. Potions are not something you can brew up over the kitchen stove! This laboratory must be furnished with furnaces, alembics, retorts, beakers, distilling coils, and smoldering braziers—in short, all the trappings of a mad scientist's laboratory (circa 1400 AD).

The basic cost for such a laboratory is at least 2,000 gp if all the skilled craftsmen are readily available to construct the equipment to the wizard's specifications. And this cost covers only the furnishings; the wizard must also have an appropriate place to put all these things and to conduct his work. Given the strange noises and foul smells that issue at all hours from such a laboratory, many a landlord may be less than willing to have his rooms used for such purposes.

Once the laboratory is established, the wizard must pay 10% of its value every month to maintain the equipment, replacing things broken in experiments and minor ingredients that lose potency with age.

Priests do not make use of a laboratory—such equipment smacks of impious and heretical learning. Instead, the priest places his faith in greater powers to perform the actual transformations needed to blend the potion. As such, he uses an altar specially consecrated to the purpose. When constructing such an altar, the character must be ready to make some sacrifice of worth, either a monetary sacrifice or, even more significantly, a special service to his deity. Thereafter, the priest need only respect the altar as would be normal for his faith.

Creating the Potion: With all this equipment assembled, the wizard or priest is ready to begin. The cost already determined, the time to brew, infuse, distill, decant, and extract the potion is measured in days equal to the cost divided by 100. During this time, the character must remain uninterrupted except for the normal needs of sleep and food. If the work is disturbed, the potion is hopelessly ruined as are all ingredients used in it.

After the work is done, the DM secretly rolls percentile dice to determine if the potion has taken. The base chance of success 70%. For every 100 gp worth of ingredients, 1% is subtracted. For every two levels of the spellcaster (or fraction thereof), 1% is added to the base.

If the percentile roll is equal to or less than the chance of success, the potion succeeds. If the potion fails, the spellcaster has unwittingly brewed either a deadly poison or a potion of delusion, at the DM's discretion. Of course, the player won't know whether a potion is good until it's too late. In any case, the wizard or priest is wise to label his creation, for there is no sure way to distinguish between different potions by sight alone.

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