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Using the Arcane Alchemist

Copyright Rich Kirkland ©2001

Edited by Rich Kirkland for The Guild Companion

Since December 2000, I've slowly introduced all of the base lists for the Arcane Alchemist. While each list provides the alchemist with some significant abilities, the most interesting is the ability to combine any base list with any other Arcane Alchemist Base list. By combining the qualities of matter with energy, you can make superior fossil fuels. By combining life, energy and sentience, you can create a fire elemental. By combining various animals, you can create any of the composite creatures in Creatures & Monsters. In fact, this was the original premise behind this profession. After looking at entry after entry of strange creature supposedly crafted by long gone wizards, I decided to create the profession that could explain all of these strange creations. From there it didn't take me long to decide that the same profession would likely modify all other aspects of reality to fit their needs. So Arcane Alchemists were formed to explain all of the unexplained phenomena of most fantasy worlds.

Below I've included a quick breakdown of spell combinations that may help spark ideas for your own game. While I have not included some of the more complex combinations (like those needed for Treeherds, or Air elementals), these should give you a good starting point. Also, while the emphasis of this article is on the creation aspect of the Arcane Alchemist, he is not limited to just creation. Many of his spells can have powerful effects if used creatively.

Another point, none of the spells can be used to create a +5 magic anything. If the GM wants to assign a bonus for a sword imbued with magic energies and given a diamond hard, razor sharp edge, then it's up to him to decide how good it should be. The only caution I would suggest, is that creating a bonus item of that nature should take the arcane alchemist longer than the equivalent item would for a normal alchemist. The normal alchemy lists are very focused, while these lists are very broad. It is important for the GM to be sure that all of these limitations are observed to maintain game balance. Furthermore, Arcane Alchemists make great explanations of how things happen or as NPCs, but as PCs they can be quite daunting. Be sure you are ready for a master or reality before you let one loose in your campaign.

Arcane Alchemist Sample Combination Chart
Solid CombinationsLiquid Combinations
Solid-Lighter building materialsSolid-Flamable water
Liguid-Ice at room temps.Liquid-Denser than water oil
Vapor-Lighter than air solidsVapor-Instant fog
Animal-Creature with dense skinAnimal-Creature with acidic saliva
Vegetable-Plants that don't burn (easily)Vegetable-Viscous Plant
Sentient-Sentient doorknockerSentient-Liquid that memorizes reflections
Kinetic-Gloves of FrictionKinetic-Magnetic liquids
Radiant-Solid that converts heat to lightRadiant-Glow in the dark fluids
Mana-Mana BatteryMana-Mana Potion

Vapor CombinationsAnimal Combinations
Solid-Impassable doorwaysSolid-Creatures with stronger bones
Liguid-Liquid capable of being breathed by lungsLiquid-Shape changing creatures
Vapor-Extremely light or heavy airVapor-Phermones or negative phermones
Animal-Creatures that breath unique atmospheresAnimal-Wooly dogs that taste like chicken
Vegetable-Plant that exudes sleep gasVegetable-Procreation by splitting in half
Sentient-Sentient vaporsSentient-Super intelligent lab rats
Kinetic-Vapor that slows it surroundsKinetic-Very agile sloths and bandicoots
Radiant-Drought winds - radiates heatRadiant-Fire breathing lizards
Mana-Vapor that drains manaMana-Spiders that spin webs of mana

Vegetable CombinationsSentient Combinations
Solid-Iron wood trees - literallySolid-Swords that remember past glories
Liguid-Plants that abosrb blood instead of waterLiquid-Potions that give increased memory
Vapor-Plants that float on airVapor-Send messages on the wind
Animal-Roving plants of the Great PlainsAnimal-Make docile/tamable animals
Vegetable-Apple trees that also produce cottonVegetable-Cause hallucinations when eaten
Sentient-Conversational treesSentient-Cures a foe with dumbness
Kinetic-Tree that slows winds around itKinetic-Sentient wind
Radiant-Fruit of plant provides a day's warmthRadiant-Fire with an attitude
Mana-Magical fruitMana-Magic aware of its own abilities

Radiant CombinationsKinetic Combinations
Solid-Passive heating/cooling in homeSolid-Super slick skis
Liguid-Self heating water - great for soupsLiquid-Lubricants for all occasions
Vapor-Fire extinguishing windVapor-Very bouyant balloons
Animal-Animal-Bear that defies gravity
Vegetable-Vegetable that feeds off heat, not sunlightVegetable-Tree that eliminates gravity around it
Sentient-A glowing ball of light servantSentient-Sentient gravity?
Kinetic-Reduce the heat generated by frictionKinetic-Localized gravity wells
Radiant-Permanent torchRadiant-Magnets that produce light
Mana-Transform fire into power pointsMana-Power a spell with a waterwheel

Mana Combinations
Solid-Magical Minerals
Liguid-Magic pools
Vapor-Pixie dust?
Animal-Magic wielding creatures
Vegetable-Magic wielding plants
Sentient-Magic wielding - well, you get the idea
Kinetic-Modify earthly currents (ley lines)
Radiant-Modify earthnodes
Mana-Raw mana for any and all purposes

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