Alchemist (3.5e Prestige Class)
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In the corner of a dimly lit study there is a laboratory, instuments of science at use on the worktable, a myriad of ingredients for experimentation on the shelves, thick tomes of knowledge lying open, and a solitary figure hunched over it all unlocking the mysteries of the Prime. This is the Alchemist at work.
|“||The true mysteries of this world are mine!||”|
|—Laevander, Elven Alchemist|
The alchemist is a master of the worldly mysteries, a scientist of the natural mysteries of the Prime Material Plane, and seeker of the greatest secrets. Those who become alchemists seek power and knowledge. Power through knowledge or knowledge through power; it makes little difference. Alchemists are experts in brewing potions and experimental research. Most alchemists have backgrounds as wizards although some are druids, sorcerers, or clerics.
Becoming an Alchemist
Alchemists are spellcasters that focus their lives on their craft of alchemy and the search for knowledge. The depths of alchemical knowledge require spellcasting abilities so any of the primary spellcasting classes can become alchemists, however, it is important for alchemists to have high intelligence for crafting, researching, and other tasks.
|Class:||At least one level of of one of the following classes: Druid, Cleric, Sorcerer, or Wizard|
|Level||Wisdom bonus||Saving Throws||Special||Spellcasting|
|1st||+0||+0||+0||+2||Advanced Potion Brewing, Alchemist Lore||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|2nd||+1||+0||+0||+3||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|3rd||+1||+1||+1||+3||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|4th||+2||+1||+1||+4||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|5th||+2||+1||+1||+4||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|6th||+3||+2||+2||+5||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|7th||+3||+2||+2||+5||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|8th||+4||+2||+2||+6||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|9th||+4||+3||+3||+6||Alchemy Secret||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
|10th||+5||+3||+3||+7||Eternal Life, Philosopher's stone||+1 level of existing spellcasting|
Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
|12th||Epic Alchemy Secret|
|14th||Epic Alchemy Secret|
|16th||Epic Alchemy Secret|
|18th||Epic Alchemy Secret|
|20th||Epic Alchemy Secret|
All of the following are class features of the Alchemist.
Spellcasting: At each level, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefits a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one spellcasting class before becoming an Alchemist, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.
Alchemist Lore (Ex): Thanks to long hours of study, an alchemist has a wide range of stray knowledge. This ability is identical to the bard’s Bardic Knowledge class feature, using the alchemist’s class level in place of the bard level.
Advanced Potion Brewing: At 1st level the alchemist has been trained by another alchemist in the process of creating higher level potions. The alchemist can now make potions of any spell of a level equivalent to the highest level spell she can cast and at a spellcaster level no higher than her own. The cost of an alchemist's potions follow the cost formula from the Brew Potion feat but excludes the XP cost.
Alchemy Secret(Ex): At 2nd level, and certain levels thereafter, the alchemist learns a bit more about the great mysteries of the world. She may select one alchemy secret from the list below that she has not previously discovered and gain the associated bonuses after paying the cost and making the potion. The cost of materials for the first secret potion is 1200gp, the second 1800gp, third 2400gp, fourth 3000gp, fifth 4000gp, and sixth 5000gp.
Secret of Titanic Strength: The alchemist gains a bonus +4 to Strength and she also gains the diehard feat without the normal prerequisites. If it already has that feat, it gains an extra +2 to Strength instead.
Secret of Infinite Wisdom: The alchemist gains a +4 bonus to Wisdom and gains a +4 insight bonus to AC.
Secret of Optimal Healing: Each time the alchemist who possesses this secret is healed she may choose to transfer part of that healing to an ally within 100 feet from her.
Secret of Everlasting Happiness: The alchemist gains a +2 Morale bonuses on all saving throws. She also gains a +4 Morale bonus on will saves vs fear-based effects.
Secret of Perfect Metabolism: The alchemist gains immunity to all poisons and diseases, no matter their origin. She also automatically succeeds all saves against spells or effect that affect her metabolism, such as spells that dehydrate the target.
Philosopher's stone (Ex): Every Alchemist's goal is to create or find the Philosopher's stone, but few succeed. She is one of the few, and have now obtained immortality and the capacity to turn iron and other metals into gold. She is capable of turning 1 lb worth of iron into the equivalent mass in gold, for a worth of 50 gp, every day. She must succeed on a Wisdom check DC 18 for the process to successfully complete, and only one attempt per day is allowed. If the throw is a natural 1, the iron will be lost and explode causing 4d6 of damage. If the total ranges from 2 to 9, the iron will turn into copper (worth 50 cp). If the total ranges from 10 to 17, the iron will turn into silver (worth 50 sp).
Eternal Life (Ex): At 10th level the alchemist stops physically aging. The alchemist does not gain any penalty from age but she retains all the bonuses. The alchemist also reverts any penalty she accumulated before having this class feature. The alchemist can not die from age but can still be slain otherwise.
Epic Alchemy Secret(Ex): At higher levels the alchemist can unlock unheard of power through their alchemical concoctions. She may select one epic alchemy secret from the list below or any remaining standard alchemy secret that she has not previously discovered and gain the associated bonuses after paying the cost and making the potion. Each epic alchemy secret potion costs 9000gp for the materials to brew.
Epic Secret of Unlimited Power The alchemist gains a +5 bonus to her base attack bonus and +3 bonus to her spell save DC on all spells that she casts.
Epic Secret of Unlimited Resistance The alchemist gains DR 5/- and SR equal to 12 + her caster level.
Epic Secret of Unlimited Thought The alchemist taps into the natural knowledge of the world itself, able to make all knowledge checks as though trained and with 20 ranks. In addition she may cast Foresight three times per day at her base caster level.
Epic Secret of Unlimited Will The alchemist gains a +5 bonus to all saves and may cast Dominate Monster three times perday at her base caster level.
Epic Secret of Unlimited Desire The alchemist pours all of their deepest desire into a potion and when it is imbibed, are allowed one Wish at no XP or further gp costs.
Playing an Alchemist
Adventures: An alchemist is most likely to venture outside of their lab in order to secure some lost artifact or rare alchemical reagent. Any way to expand their own library of knowledge is a draw as well.
Background: The profession and craft of alchemy is an age old tradition of potion-making. However the majority of potion brewing is limited to low level spellcraft and healing. There are those that seek a higher form of alchemy. These true devotees of the process of alchemy, through experimentation and a thirst for knowledge, unlock the secrets of higher forms of standard potion-making and even potions that provide permanent boons to their own physiology.
Religion: While some alchemists are clerics who can worship any deity, the majority are not so holy. The faithful may honor Boccob, Lord of Magic, a common patron for many spellcasters, alchemists included.
Combat: Alchemists follow the role of their base spellcasting class. Their d4 hit die and poor base attack bonus make them unsuited for melee combat. They are usually found in the back line, ready to cast spells as needed and to distribute their crafted potions where applicable.
Advancement: Most alchemists were either wizards or archivists. Many alchemists prefer to stay as alchemists so they can gain eternal life but others may simply want the ability to brew better potions or to gain a single secret.
Resources: Alchemists are, more often than not, loners. Some alchemists may join a crafting or mage guild for additional resources. Alchemist organizations are rare, if any even exist at all.
Alchemists in the World
|“||I seek an eternity of power and knowledge. I will stop at nothing to achieve this end.||”|
|—Syl Salazar, Evil Human Alchemist|
NPC Reactions: Alchemists do not inspire any particular reaction from NPCs except if they fully know the nature of the alchemist. They tend to react suspiciously toward alchemists who act overtly greedy in regard to their search for knowledge.
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (Arcana) can research an Alchemist to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|11||Alchemists are researchers and loremasters who specialize in potion-making.|
|16||Alchemists are very skilled in creating potions and are able researchers of the secrets of the Prime Material Plane.|
|21||Alchemists are able to learn incredible secrets, and thus are able to reshape themselves and the world around them.|
|26||Few powerful alchemists in legend have discovered the secret of eternal life, making them forever young, able to evade death. However, that ability doesn't stop them from dying by the sword.|
Alchemists in the Game
Adaptation: Alchemists fit into any campaign, there is no need for much adaptation.
Sample Encounter: Alvos, a mad, self-centered alchemist is causing trouble. He tried to steal the secrets of another alchemist. The PCs are hired to stop Alvos' rampage in the other alchemist's family manor.