Monday, April 18, 2016

Alchemy Styles

Styles were introduced in GURPS Martial Arts, and expanded into the standard magic system in GURPS Thaumatology - Magical Styles.  Other variations on the idea came up in Pyramid 3-54: Social Engineering and GURPS Powers: The Weird, and it made me consider other possible applications.  I think Alchemy as presented in the Magic book could be an interesting vehicle for it, so here's my notes on what the style perk might give and an example style.

Feel free to comment, especially on anything for the sample style I might be missing.  It seems a bit thin, even for the first Alchemical style I've written.

New Perks

Alchemical Style Familiarity†

You have studied the mysteries of an alchemical art.  Paying a point for the familiarity gives the following benefits:
  • The style's public elixirs and their appropriate forms (not any secret elixirs) are automatically entered into your formulary.  You never suffer the -2 for an unlearned elixir with them and may pay points to improve their techniques without seeking training.
  • When you deal with another alchemist who has the same perk, neither of you suffers -3 for lack of Cultural Familiarity when making Savoir-Faire rolls, Teaching rolls, and so on.
  • You get +1 to identify any of the elixirs your style teaches.

Secret Elixir†

You know one of your style's hidden elixirs that isn't taught publicly.  It's entered into your formulary as the public elixirs are.

New Techniques

Speed Analysis (Hard)

Prerequisites: Alchemy, Efficient (Alchemy) perk
Defaults: Identify Magic Item (Alchemy) -8, may not exceed default

You can attempt to alchemically identify a magic item instantly. (Generalized from a power-up in Pyramid 3-82.)

Alchemical Esoterica 

7 points

Those who study the Esoterica consider themselves students of the universe as a whole, and try to understand both the natural and supernatural underpinnings of reality.  The Elixirs learned from this school focus on knowledge and that which can improve the student's understanding.  They also have a few occasionally used on ambitious rivals...

Skills: Alchemy, Astrology, Expert Skill (Natural Philosophy), Hazardous Materials (Magical), Occultism, Thaumatology.
Learned Elixirs: Alchemical Antidote (-3), Craftsmanship (-2), Endurance (-1), Foolishness (-1), Foresight (-1), Forgetfulness (-4), Keen Sight (-1), Magic Resistance (-3), Memory (-1), Music (-1), Reanimation (-3), Self-love (-1), Sleep (-1), Tranquility (-1), Wisdom (-2).
Techniques: Identify Magic Item, Speed Analysis.
Perks: Efficient (Alchemy), Equipment Bond (Alchemy Lab), Permit (Elixir of Reanimation), Secret Elixir (Lichdom).
Secret Elixirs: Lichdom (-7).

Optional Traits

Attributes: Increased IQ.
Secondary Characteristic Modifiers: Increased Per and Will.
Advantages: Single Minded.
Disadvantages: Absent Mindedness, Odious Personal Habits (Intentional obfuscation of speech), Overconfidence.
Skills: Archaeology, History, Meditation, Scrounging, Search, Throwing.


Pyramid 3-28 - Thaumatology II:  "It's Pure Magic" by Christopher R. Rice
Pyramid 3-82 - Magical Creations:  "Dungeon Brewmasters" by Jason "PK" Levine

Edited to add the Secret Elixirs perk.  Not that anyone couldn't figure it out, but I figured it was courteous to define a new thing.

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