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Secret Craft: Alchemy

by Francis Larivière

Alchemist are arcane spellcasters who specialises in the use of rare ingredients and compounds and in the alteration of matter, energy and there own bodies. Their abilities are not spells but come from extended research and the use of their specialised laboratories.

Hit Die: d4.
To qualify to become an Alchemist, a character must fulfil all the following criteria.
Skills: Craft (Alchemy) +10, Knowledge (Arcana) +8
Feats: Skill Focus (Craft (Alchemy)), Brew Potion, Any one other Item Creation feat.
Spells: Must be able to cast at least one arcane spell of the third level.
Special: Must find an Alchemist willing to sponsor the character into the secret craft.

Class Skills:
The Alchemist class skills (and the key ability for each) are Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Knowledge (all skills, taken individually) (Int), Profession (Wis), Speak Languages (Int) and Spellcraft (Int).
Skill points at each level: 2 + Int modifier.

Table: The Alchemist

Level Att Fort Ref Will Special Spell
1 0 +0 +0 +2 Alchemist Laboratory, Find components, Alchemical Preparation 3/day +1 caster level
2 +1 +0 +0 +3 Find Magical Components 2/day, Magical Preparation +1 caster level
3 +1 +1 +1 +3 Transmute Matter 1/day +1 caster level
4 +2 +1 +1 +4 Transcend Energy 1/week +1 caster level
5 +2 +1 +1 +4 Mutate Lifeform 1/month +1 caster level

Class Features
All the following are class feature of the Alchemist prestige class.

Weapon and armour proficiency: Alchemists gain no proficiency with any weapon or armour.

Spells: When a new Alchemist level is gained, the character gains new spells per day (and spells known, if applicable) as if he had also gained a level in whatever arcane spellcasting class in which he could cast arcane spells before he added the prestige class level. He does not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If a character had more than one arcane spellcasting class in which he could cast arcane spells before he became an Alchemist, he must decide to which class he adds each level of Alchemist for the purpose of determining spells per day.

Alchemist Laboratory: Most abilities of the Alchemist require an Alchemist Laboratory to be properly executed. Such a laboratory has a base cost of 2500gp per level of the Alchemist, complete with beakers, retorts, balloons, crucibles, components, powders, liquids, crystals, balms, gases, ores, etc. Component replacement costs 250gp per months. Most special abilities also have a cost associated to them. An alchemist can also construct a field laboratory that he can carry with him on wilderness expeditions and during dungeons explorations. Such a laboratory cost 1000gp per Alchemist's level to assemble. Component replacement costs 100gp per month (plus any additional cost incurred by the use of the Alchemist's special abilities).
An Alchemist Lab and a field laboratory replace the Alchemist's Lab from the player's handbook and as such provide a +2 circumstance bonus on regular use of the craft (Alchemy) skill (i.e. when not used as part of the special abilities of the Alchemist Prestige Class).
Unless noted otherwise, all special abilities of the Alchemist require is Alchemist Laboratory. The Field Laboratory can always be substituted but always cause a -5 circumstantial penalty of the Alchemist's Craft (alchemy) check.

Find components: The Alchemist can use is Craft (alchemy) skill to identify all components in any non-magical item (specific minerals, metals, basic substance, as well as known compounds: gases, liquids, vegetal, flesh, etc.) or any magical potion.
Identifying an item takes 5 minutes and supposes the use of the Alchemist's Laboratory. Each such attempt cost 1gp in material (event if the Alchemist do not use a laboratory). The Alchemist can choose to take 20 on is roll. In this case, the attempt costs 20gp and take 100 minutes.
The following table resumes what DC to use to identify a specific material. If the final roll is more than 10 bellow the DC, the Alchemist makes a false interpretation.

Table: Find Components DCs

Item Craft (Alchemy) DC
Magical potions 25
Acid 15
Poison Poison's save DC +5
Antitoxin 15
Flesh (what creature) 15 or 15 + HD/2 if exotic creature
Vegetable (what plant) 20 or 20 + HD/2 if exotic plant creature
Solids (Metals, Minerals, etc.) 20
Gases 20
Liquids 15
Item is common (ex: water, iron, etc.) -2
Item is rare +2
Item is extremely rare +5
Item is slightly damage +2
Item is badly damaged +5
Spending only 1 min +5
Spending only 2 rounds +15
Using no Laboratory +15

Alchemical Preparation: 3 times per day, the Alchemist can concoct a non-magical powder, balm or liquid solution producing a specific effect. Basically, he can create any object that can normally be created with the Craft (Alchemy) skill in 1d6 hours, instead of the normal time indicated in the craft skill description. The DCs for this ability are the same as the Craft skill and the cost is half the item's market value.
Before the Alchemist can use this ability, however, he must research each preparation individually in is laboratory. Such a research takes one week to complete, at the end of which the Alchemist makes a Craft (Alchemy) check to see if he learned out to craft it. The DC for this check is the same as the DC to create the preparation. If the check fails, the Alchemist must start all over again. Once a formula is learned, the Alchemist writes it down into is Codex, a book collecting all of is formulae.
At the DM's discretion, new Alchemical Preparation (not listed under the Craft skill description) can be researched by the Alchemist.

Find Magical Components: Starting at level 2, the Alchemist can, twice per day, try to identify the magical properties of any single magical item. Doing so takes 30 minutes, at the end of which the Alchemist makes a Craft (Alchemy) check to see if he succeeded. The DC for this check is 15 + Item's caster level. Each attempt cost 100gp.

Magical Preparation: Starting at the 2nd level, the Alchemist gains the ability to create potions at half the price. Both the costs in gold and in XP are haves.

Transmute Matter: Starting at level 3, and once per day, the Alchemist gains the ability to change the nature of a non-living object to another non-living matter such as minerals, crystals, metals, gas, liquid or dead organic matter like wood, hides, fur, bones, claw, etc.
The Alchemist can affect up to 1 pound of material per Alchemist level. This produces the same weight of any new solid material. If the new material is a gas, the Alchemist produces 10 cubic feet per level. For example, a 4th level Alchemist can reduce a 4 pounds chunk of wood into a 4 pounds gem, or vice versa. The original material must be a single item. For example, one coin or one weapon can easily be transmuted, but a pile of coins or a portion of a wall cannot. The final shape of the transmuted material is up to the Alchemist.
The DC for the operation is 10 + (new material's worth/50). Keep in mind that 1 pound of gold is approximately worth 50gp (probably less since it needs to be transformed into coins before it can be used as money).
It costs the Alchemist 500gp each time he uses this power.

Transcend Energy: Upon reaching the 4th level, the Alchemist can, once per week, transform energy into matter. Useable energies include a bolt of lightning from the sky, the Radiance (for member of the brotherhood), concentrated sunlight during a solar eruption, or spell causing 200 points of damage from the same energy type (for example, the average damage of 6 lightning bolts cast simultaneously).
This ability allows for different effects. Each one takes one week to accomplish and requires the construction of a device (a large antenna, a giant magnifier, a large gem, etc.) to collect the energy and focus it on a specific area. At the end of the week, a Craft (Alchemy) skill check must be done. On a failed check, the energy-focusing device explodes in a 20' radius ball of energy causing 4d6 per level of the Alchemist (max 20d6) to everyone in the radius (reflex save, DC 17, for half the damage).
The different effects, and the cost in material attached to them, are:
Recharging magical items: The Alchemist can recharge staves and wands (max 50 charges). The DC to recharge such an object is equal to 10 + remaining charges in the object. To find the cost for this operation, multiply the number of charges recharge by 1/50th of the market cost of the object. The Alchemist must also spend XP equals to 1/50th of this amount.
Animating Constructs: This reduces in half the XP cost associated with constructing a Golem and can replace the casting of one Geas/Quest spell or Limited Wish spell if the Alchemist desires it so. The cost in material is 1/25th of the construct's cost, in addition to the regular cost of the construct (ex: an extra 3200gp for an Iron Golem). The Craft (alchemy) DC for this is 20.
Reversing Aging Process: The Alchemist can reverse the aging process of any living creature (including himself) at a maximum rate of 4 weeks per Alchemist level (the Alchemist can choose to reverse a smaller number of week if he wishes). The DC for this effect is 10 + the number of week to reverse. The cost is 5000gp.
Recalling a creature to life: The creature must not be dead for more then 1 day per level of the Alchemist when to process begins. Other than that, this effect is identical to the spell Resurrection. The DC for this ability is equal to 15 + the HD (or level) of the creature to resurrect. The construction of the energy-focusing device for this ability requires 10000gp worth of material.

Mutate Life form: Upon reaching 5th level, and once per month, the Alchemist is able to alter part or all of his body (or a helpless man-sized victim's). The affected living matter is turned into a mineral, metal, gas, liquid, crystal or living flesh of the Alchemist's choice. For example, the Alchemist could transform is hand into "living silver", thus creating a silver-based form of life. Only extraordinary abilities can be gain in this was. Thus if an Alchemist would transform its skin into dragon flesh, he would not be able to breath fire (a supernatural ability), but transforming is skin into the skin of a troll would allow him to regenerate.
Only the Alchemist's appearance and consistency change not is body shape, intelligence or spellcasting abilities. So a Gelatinous Cube would be translucent, acidic humanoid and an Iron Golem Alchemist would gain a natural armour class bonus of +22. However, there are drawbacks to altered states (rusting metal, excessive weight for minerals, etc.); the DM must keep track of all these (an Iron Golem Alchemist would probably suffer a penalty on is dexterity score).
The Craft (alchemy) check DC for this ability is 35.
On a failed check, the Alchemist permanently transform into the matter or life form. For example, if he was trying to transform into a Gelatinous Cube, he becomes a Gelatinous Cube under the control of the DM. Is he was trying to transform is skin into "living silver" he becomes a solid silver statue.