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1001 Perplexing Potions
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1001 Perplexing Potions

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No more boring-looking potions! Here are descriptions of 1001 Perplexing Potions not made by Big Magica: their containers, their consistency, their color or colors, and even the type and accuracy of their labels, are as unique as their creators. They also work well for descriptions of other liquids, such as drinks in a spaceport bar.

1001 Perplexing Potions

It has been a hard-fought battle, and the adventurers are out of spells and considerably the worse for wear when they are finally able to safely examine their loot. There are some coins, an enormous tapestry, and a small locked chest. The rogue sets to work on the lock.

GM: When you finally open the chest, you find five potions.

Players, collectively: Oh, good!

Fighter: Does one of them look like a healing potion?

GM: Well, they all look different, and none of them look like any others you've seen before.

Players, collectively: Oh, God!

Welcome to the "1001 Things" collections

Potions aren't made to standard recipes by Big Magica, after all. They're all as different as the alchemists and wizards who created them. Some of them have readable labels, but then again some of those labels aren't very accurate, either. Their tastes and smells rarely give any clue as to what they might do, though it's probably harder to get a hireling to sample a potion that tastes like cow manure than one that tastes like peaches. Enough with the standardized potions; they're supposed to be mysterious, after all.

This is a collection of 1001 potion descriptions: their containers, their consistency, their color or colors, and even the type and accuracy of their labels. One assumes that the GM has already determined what potions are in the treasure. That is naturally specific to both the game system and the individual campaign. But descriptions for them? That's what you now have 1001 of, which should be enough to suit the needs of a typical game for a long time.

You can pick the next one off the list, roll 3d10, or just choose one you like. It's up to you whether, once a particular description has been matched up to a particular potion, future potions of that type will be similar -- i.e., all healing potions will be green with silver swirls and taste like worms -- or whether some or all subsequent potions will have their own unique descriptions.

There are uses for this list beyond fantasy campaigns, too. For example, you might have listed the potency and effects of a dozen strange drinks found in a spaceport bar, but what do they look like? The players will want to know, and now you have 1001 descriptions for them. What's not to like about an effervescent blue liquid with floating white globs that tastes like strawberries? Except maybe that's the one you decided that one sip will get humans instantly hammered.

So spice up your game a bit, and have fun!

Look for more things in the 1001 Things series, with convenient, ready-to-use items for your roleplaying games.

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File Last Updated:
December 30, 2017
This title was added to our catalog on December 30, 2017.