Alchemist’s Supplies 5E Guide

Alchemist’s Supplies 5E Guide

Dungeons and Dragons allow players to choose a set of artisan tools to excel at during their build creation. While the full extent of how the tools may be utilized often remains vague to both the DM and the player, in the beginning, the choice of one’s proficiency continues to be a favorite among the tabletop game’s fan base.

One such artisan’s tool is the ever so famous Alchemist’s Supplies. What can you do with the D&D 5E alchemy kit, and how can you craft potions? This article will touch upon all that and some more. 

Alchemist’s Supplies According to Xanathar’s Guide to Everything

Before we get into the nuances of Alchemist’s Supplies, let’s let Xanathar’s Guide to Everything lead the way for us. Here’s what Xanathar’s Guide to Everything outlines about this artisanal tool:

“Alchemist’s supplies enable a character to produce useful concoctions, such as acid or alchemist’s fire.

Components. Alchemist’s supplies include two glass beakers, a metal frame to hold a beaker in place over an open flame, a glass stirring rod, a small mortar and pestle, and a pouch of common alchemical ingredients, including salt, powdered iron, and purified water.

Arcana. Proficiency with alchemist’s supplies allows you to unlock more information on Arcana checks involving potions and similar materials.

Investigation. When you inspect an area for clues, proficiency with alchemist’s supplies grants additional insight into any chemicals or other substances that might have been used in the area.

Alchemical Crafting. You can use this tool proficiency to create alchemical items. A character can spend money to collect raw materials, which weigh 1 pound for every 50 gp spent. The DM can allow a character to make a check using the indicated skill with advantage. As part of a long rest, you can use alchemist’s supplies to make one dose of acid, alchemist’s fire, antitoxin, oil, perfume, or soap. Subtract half the value of the created item from the total gp worth of raw materials you are carrying.”

If you are proficient with Alchemist’s Supplies, you can use the instruments and tools required to craft potions. With this tool, you also add your proficiency bonus to rolls that are directed towards crafting Alchemical potions, not including healing potions. Note that owing to the potions being magical, the 5E Alchemist Supplies fall right under the crafting magical items category, a rather lengthy, engaging, and not to mention, expensive process.

If you are wondering what the Alchemical items are, it looks something like this: poisons, potions, concoctions, and magical medicines made from plants as well as caustic chemicals, various acids, as well as some dangerous (and we dare say, illegal) substances.

A 5E Alchemy kit includes burners, vials, flasks, and several other similar items required to pursue Alchemy. Note that your tools would cost 50 gp and weigh 8 lbs. If you are proficient with Alchemist’s Supplies, you can add the proficiency bonus to any Intelligence checks that you make for the Alchemical concoctions. 

So, how do you craft an Alchemical item? First and foremost, you must have ample proficiency in using Alchemist’s Supplies. Second, you need to know the recipe for whichever item you wish to craft. Last but not the least, you should gather the ingredients required, and get to work. 

Note that Alchemical items are available in 3 primary quantities: minor/ moderate/ masterwork. Naturally, the higher the quality, the more effective and potent the finished product. Unless mixed with diluents such as water, Alchemical items usually do not lose potency. 

As for where you may get them from, they are open for purchase at local alchemists’. The only bummer is that the time-consuming nature of these products also impacts their price. It might not burn a hole in your pocket, but it will surely leave a mark.

Requirements To Craft A Potion 

So, what is required to craft a potion? Where do the 5E Alchemist tools come into play? We shall get into all that, one at a time. Crafting potions is not as difficult as it sounds, but you must know what you are doing and what you are in for. Having said that, let’s take a look at what is required to craft a potion:

  • Alchemist’s Supplies (of course): It is only natural that potion-making requires 5E Alchemist supplies. These primarily consist of decanters, beakers, tubes, vials, and burners. You will also need to have a stable workplace to craft your potions over an extended period.  
  • Recipe: Much like cooking anything, whipping up some super potent potion also requires a thorough knowledge of the recipe of what you are set to make. Make sure you have the specific instructions to make the potions you want the supplies required for that. 
  • Components: These refer to the specific magical ingredients with the properties required for your potion. To provide an example, you will need the essence of a Water Weird to make a water-breathing potion. As for how to get your hands on them, you can get these special ingredients on your many adventures. 
  • Gold: These refer to the extra supplies with a specific gold cost depending on the rarity of the item that is being crafted. (Check how much gold you have at the start of the campaign)
  • Time: As we discussed, making potions naturally requires some time and effort. So, the time it will take to craft potions decides the cost and the feasibility of making them. The time taken to craft potions greatly depends on the rarity of the ingredients needed. 
  • Rolls: Note that you must pass Intelligence checks to craft potions of your choice successfully. Being proficient in Alchemist’s Supplies helps you add them to your Intelligence checks. 

1. Cost And Crafting Time 

As we discussed a while back, the crafting time of potions differs, depending on the rarity of the ingredients required. Similarly, the cost depends on the time required to craft the potion. Make sure you are aware of the cost and the crafting time of potions before you commit to one. Here’s a list to help you out:

Rarity of ItemCost of Creation (gp)Workweeks
Rare10005
Very Rare10,00012.5
Legendary50,00025
Uncommon1001
Common251/2

Alongside the rarity of the 5E Alchemist Supplies, you ought to also be aware of the time required, and cost demanded. This table should help you out.

2. Magical Ingredients Required 

Your Dungeon Master will be in charge of deciding which magical ingredients will be required and how rare the homebrewed magical potion will be. If you stumble upon a magical ingredient in any of your adventures, it is up to the DM to decide which item you can craft with it. 

Here’s a list of the challenge rating of creatures alongside their corresponding rarity that will help DMs determine whom to allow which potion:

Rarity of ItemCR Range
Rare9-12
Very Rare13-18
Legendary19+
Uncommon4-8
Common1-3

3. Non-Magical Ingredients Required

In this regard, there happen to be 3 primary arguments:

  1. The items specified should be bought beforehand (such as a 500 gp diamond), but the smaller elements are assumed to be available, so a certain amount of gold will be subtracted each time they are used.
  2. The necessary components are readily available to the player, and a certain amount of gold will be subtracted each time they are used.
  3. Every required item needs to be carefully purchased, tracked or gathered beforehand, and the failure to do so will result in you not being allowed to craft potions.

The takeaway is that it all depends on your DM and the PCs in his game. Establish what you want to do with your 5E Alchemist Supplies beforehand, and stick to it throughout. 

Popular Alchemical Recipes 

Before getting into potion-crafting, it is important to have the recipe right in front of you. You must know the ingredients well and look for them diligently. To help you out, here are some popular recipes you can make with the 5E alchemy kit:

1. Acid

Need to dissolve something, such as metal, wood, or stone? A rather generic bottle of acid would do you good. Feel free to splash the acid vial onto the target, given they are within 5 feet of you, or hurl the vial up to 20 feet, causing it to shatter on impact. Simply put, make a ranged attack against any target or an object with the acid as a sort of improvised weapon. Roll damage equals the quality of the acid on a hit.

  • Crafting time: 8 hours
  • Material cost: 15 gp/ attempt
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Craft DC: 8 for Minor/ 10 for Moderate/ 13 for Masterwork
  • Minor: will dissolve up to 5 square feet of wood, or 2 square feet of stone + will deal 1d4 acid damage
  • Moderate: will dissolve up to 7 square feet of wood, 3 square feet of stone, or small chunks of metal + will deal 2d4 acid damage
  • Masterwork: will dissolve up to 10 square feet of wood, 5 square feet of stone, or 1 square feet of metal + will deal 2d6 acid damage

2. Alchemist’s Fire

To some Alchemists, fire is indeed always the answer. This adhesive fluid that ignites upon impact with air, is available to you in a flask. Feel free to throw it up to 20 feet, thus shattering it instantaneously. You can also make a ranged attack against an object or a creature by using the fire as a sort of improvised weapon. If hit, the enemy will take fire damage, and here’s more: they will keep taking fire damage at the beginning of each turn. If they want to terminate this damage, they can employ their action to make a DC 10 Dexterity check, which will extinguish the flames or compel the flame to extinguish itself.

  • Crafting time: 8 hours
  • Material cost: 25 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 12/ 15
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: will deal 1 fire damage
  • Moderate: will deal 1d2 fire damage
  • Masterwork: will deal 1d4 fire damage

3. Assassin’s Blood

Want to see death in a bottle? This green, viscous gooey mixture is symbolic of death itself. Enemies will be poisoned for a good part of a day upon ingestion unless a lesser restoration spell is used.

  • Crafting time: 24 hours
  • Cost: 75 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 13/ 15/ 18
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: Enemies must make a DC 10 Constitution saving throw. It will take 3 (1d6) poison damage and remain poisoned for nearly 6 hours on a failed save. If succeeded, they take half damage.
  • Moderate: Enemies must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. It will take 6 (1d12) poison damage and remain poisoned for nearly 12 hours on a failed save. If succeeded, they take half damage.
  • Masterwork: Enemies must make a DC 15 Constitution saving throw. It will take 12 (2d12) poison damage and remain poisoned for nearly 24 hours on a failed save. If succeeded, they take half damage.

4. Detect Magic Smelling Salts

Throw in some perfumes, ammonia, and a few rare oils, and bam- you have something considerably powerful! Inhale the concoction and get the ability to discern the whereabouts of magical items, much like you would be under the influence of a Detect Magic spell. Note that you can only smell the magical item, not quite see it.

  • Crafting time: 4 hours
  • Material cost: 10 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 8/ 10/ 13
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: will last for 1 minute
  • Moderate: will last for 5 minutes
  • Masterwork: will last for 10 minutes

5. Keoghtom’s Ointment

With a faint aloe fragrance, this sticky mixture is made of rarely found medicinal herbs- large quantities of them. The glass jar, weighing 0.5 pounds with 3 inches diameter, can hold up to 5 doses of Keoghtom’s Ointment. You can swallow or apply one dose of the ointment on your skin. The recipients of Keoghtom’s Ointment will gain a bonus, depending on the ointment’s potency.

  • Crafting time: 8 hours
  • Material cost: 300 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 13/ 15
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Minor: will restore 1d8+1 hp
  • Moderate: will restore 2d8+2 hp and cease to be poisoned
  • Masterwork: will restore 2d8+2 hp, cease to be poisoned, and will be cured of all diseases

6. Oil of Sharpness

This transparent, gelatinous oil glistens with small, thin silver shards. It can cost up to 5 pieces of piercing or slashing ammunition or a piercing or slashing weapon. It will take you a minute to apply the oil. For a whole hour, the concerned coated item will be magical, with a bonus to attack as well as damage rolls, depending on its potency. Many Alchemists who failed to ventilate their workspace well have met their fate choking on their own blood. However, the scientific effects of the silver dust on an Alchemist’s lungs remain to be studied properly.

  • Crafting time: 24 hours
  • Material cost: 1,600 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 15/ 18/ 20
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Minor: will get a +1 bonus
  • Moderate: will get a +2 bonus
  • Masterwork: will get a +3 bonus

7. Potion of Growth

Popular among warriors, this potion combines exquisite chemical catalysts of medicinal herbs with the blood of giants. When exposed to the concoction for long, excessive nail or hair growth observations have been made. You gain the so-called enlarge portion of the enlarge/reduce spell with this potion. The duration depends on the potency of the item. The red element of the potion starts out small, but gradually encompasses the whole liquid, only to finally contract. The process will continue even if you shake the bottle.

  • Crafting time: 8 hours
  • Material cost: 135 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 13/ 15
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Minor: will last for 1d4 rounds with no concentration required
  • Moderate: will last for 1d4 minutes with no concentration required
  • Masterwork: will last for 1d4 hours with no concentration required

8. Potions of Healing 

This is the staple for Alchemists. Costing an amount of gold in raw costs, it is quite easy to learn and recreate. The potions are made of common herbs, water, and a few chemicals, which are the off-products of most metal forging and herbalist productions. They are usually deemed perfectly safe to drink.

Potion of HealingPotion of Healing- GreaterPotion of Healing- SuperiorPotion of Healing- Supreme
Crafting time4 hours16 hours24 hours48 hours
Material cost25 gp/ attempt75 gp/ attempt225 gp/ attempt675 gp/ attempt
Craft DC8/ 10/ 1310/ 13/ 1513/ 15/ 1815/ 18/ 20
AttentionSparseSparseSparseSparse
MinorWill restore 1d4 hpWill restore 2d4 hpWill restore 4d4 hpWill restore 10d4 hp
ModerateWill restore 2d4 hpWill restore 4d4 hpWill restore 8d4 hpWill restore 10d4 +10 hp
MasterworkWill restore 2d4 + 2 hp Will restore 4d4 + 4 hpWill restore 8d4 + 8 hpWill restore 10d4 +20 hp

9. Potion of Invisibility

From the looks of it, this potion does not seem like much but shake it, and you’ll hear the sound of water. This highly experimental potion depends on the ethereal elements left by ghosts, and when drunk, you become invisible for some time, depending on its potency. Your accompaniments and clothing also vanish along with you. If attacked or a spell is cast, the potion’s effects exhaust themselves.

  • Crafting time: 24 hours
  • Material cost: 90 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 13/ 15/ 18
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Minor: effects will last till the beginning of your next turn
  • Moderate: effects will last up to 1 minute
  • Masterwork: effects will last up to 1 hour

10. Smoke Powder

With this, you can make explosive powder for grenades, firearms, and such. The black powder, coarse in nature, must be kept at a dry place after completion. Made from off-products of mining facilities, the smoke powder needs to be milled down with charcoal and sodium into an extremely volatile powder. Try avoiding lanterns, candles, and campfires while at work with this.

  • Crafting time: 4 hours
  • Material cost: 10 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 12/ 15
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: will produce 3 shots
  • Moderate: will produce 8 shots
  • Masterwork: will produce 15 shots
  • Grenade: An additional 8 gold will be required for a metal or ceramic orb, followed closely by enough Smoke Powder for around 30 shots. Hurl it up to 60 feet, and every enemy within 10 feet of the combustion will need to make a DC 12 Dexterity saving throw, in the process taking 1d6 piercing and 2d6 fire damage on a failed save, or half of it on a successful one.
  • Keg: 100 shots and an extra 14 gold will be needed as storage. Roll it or hurl it up to a range of 15 feet, and then roll initiative. It then explodes, and each enemy within 20 feet of it needs to succeed on a DC 15 Strength saving throw, or else take 2d6 bludgeoning and 3d6 fire damage if they fall prone. They take half damage on a success.

11. Smokestick

Ignite a black rod of Alchemical clay, and it will release a haze of obfuscating smoke which will obscure enemies in it. However, with a strong enough wind, the effect can be terminated.

  • Crafting time: 8 hours
  • Material cost: 25 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 12/ 15
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: Will form a 5 foot radius cloud which will last till the beginning of your next turn
  • Moderate: Will form a 10 foot radius cloud which will last for 1d4 rounds
  • Masterwork: Will form a 20 foot radius cloud which will last for 2d4 rounds

12. Thunderstone

Packed to the brim with potent reagents, this clay sphere creates a deafening boom, along with enough volatile energy to knock back enemies. Hurl it up to 20 feet away to trigger it.

  • Crafting time: 4 hours
  • Material cost: 30 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 10/ 12/ 15
  • Attention: Sparse
  • Minor: Targets within 5 feet of this clay sphere need to succeed on a DC 10 Constitution saving throw. Upon failure, they will be deaf for a minute after being knocked back 5 feet away. Targets might repeat the saving throw once their turn ends to terminate the effect early. They will be unaffected if they succeed.
  • Moderate: Targets within 10 feet of this clay sphere need to succeed on a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. Upon failure, they will be deaf for 2 minutes after being knocked back 10 feet away. Additionally, they will take 1d4 thunder damage. Targets might repeat the saving throw once their turn ends to terminate the effect early. They take half damage and not a scratch more if succeeded. 
  • Masterwork: Targets within 15 feet of this clay sphere need to succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw. Upon failure, they will be deaf for 2 minutes after being knocked back 10 feet away. Additionally, they will take 2d4 thunder damage. Targets might repeat the saving throw once their turn ends to terminate the effect early. They take half damage and not a scratch more if succeeded. 

13. Truth Serum

This costly one is one of the hardest to create. It is mixed with battered seeds of a flower growing in a few rare parts and goes through months and months of processing until the outer layer dissolves, allowing room for the delicate oils to be finally harvested. The lowest quality rolled will decide the potency of the serum.

  • Crafting time: 72 hours
  • Material cost: 75 gp/ attempt
  • Craft DC: 15/ 18/ 20
  • Attention: Constant
  • Minor: Targets need to succeed on a DC 11 Constitution saving throw, or receive a -2 to all Wisdom, Charisma, and Intelligence ability checks for an hour
  • Moderate: Targets need to succeed on a DC 13 Constitution saving throw, or risk being poisoned for an hour
  • Masterwork: Targets need to succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw, or risk being poisoned for an hour. They will not be able to knowingly lie, as if under the influence of a truth spell.

Conclusion 

With the plethora of recipes at your disposal, it will inevitably be a fun, albeit time-consuming and costly journey, to make the potion(s) of your choice. Just know the steps well, and make sure you are committed to it. 

It’s only when you enjoy the process that you can get a potent potion out of time. Happy questing!

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