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Author Topic: What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?  (Read 892 times)

ThatChrisGuy

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2020, 03:27:38 pm »
Mutated, semi-human animals.  Half-finished and volatile experiments.  Inexplicable smells.  Poisons absent-mindedly scattered among potion bottles.  A half-empty dog bowl with strange food inside.  A wrecked potty damaged by substances not of this earth.
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insubordinate polyhedral

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2020, 03:53:35 pm »
False gold and treasure? (The old lead into gold bit.) Other incomplete or unsuccessful transmutations? Stone to diamond, perhaps?

Elemental beings (fire/water/earth/air/etc.), either kept as components or used as assistants?

Mistwell

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2020, 04:17:49 pm »
Quote from: Genly Ai;1141410
Next session my group will be exploring the ruins of a house built and once occupied by an alchemist.

Any ideas on what they might find there?

Potions and homonculi I got...any other ideas?

Kurt Busiek wrote a great graphic novel called The Wizard's Tale which included a type of creature called an Alchemite which served as both an assistant to the alchemist and a constant irritant causing all sorts of trouble. Here is a picture of some (art by David Wenzel):



I think they'd find alchemites!

There are many other great images from that book worth using in a game like this:




Ghostmaker

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #18 on: July 25, 2020, 08:07:13 am »
I remember writing up rules for 'galvanized corpses' if you want to toss a low-level party a curveball.

Treat as a zombie, except that it's a construct, not undead, and it always acts last in each turn. And electrical damage heals it. Kind of like a babby's first flesh golem.

Chainsaw

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #19 on: July 25, 2020, 08:33:01 am »
Diseased druggies and wild-eyed berserkers, scavenging for that next high. And of course, some drugs, maybe lotus leaves.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2020, 08:46:36 am by Chainsaw »

Genly Ai

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #20 on: July 25, 2020, 01:29:41 pm »
Quote from: Mistwell;1141624
Kurt Busiek wrote a great graphic novel called The Wizard's Tale which included a type of creature called an Alchemite which served as both an assistant to the alchemist and a constant irritant causing all sorts of trouble. Here is a picture of some (art by David Wenzel):



I think they'd find alchemites!

There are many other great images from that book worth using in a game like this:





This is right up my alley, thank you posting this.

Nobby-W

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #21 on: July 25, 2020, 05:54:34 pm »
Unstable, dangerous or noxious chemicals has been suggested, but let's go into a few examples:

Chlorine Triflouride

Hypergolic with just about everything - including glass, sand, concrete and water.  Maybe the alchemist has it as a cleaning agent to really sterilise their apparatus - what are they working with that needs it?  There's a famous except from Ignition! that describes a ClF3 fire:

Quote
"It is, of course, extremely toxic, but that's the least of the problem. It is hypergolic with every known fuel, and so rapidly hypergolic that no ignition delay has ever been measured. It is also hypergolic with such things as cloth, wood, and test engineers, not to mention asbestos, sand, and water-with which it reacts explosively. It can be kept in some of the ordinary structural metals-steel, copper, aluminium, etc.-because of the formation of a thin film of insoluble metal fluoride which protects the bulk of the metal, just as the invisible coat of oxide on aluminium keeps it from burning up in the atmosphere. If, however, this coat is melted or scrubbed off, and has no chance to reform, the operator is confronted with the problem of coping with a metal-fluorine fire. For dealing with this situation, I have always recommended a good pair of running shoes."


Thioacetone

Extremely smelly, and very unpleasantly so.  

Quote
Recently we found ourselves with an odour problem beyond our worst expectations. During early experiments, a stopper jumped from a bottle of residues, and, although replaced at once, resulted in an immediate complaint of nausea and sickness from colleagues working in a building two hundred yards [180 m] away. Two of our chemists who had done no more than investigate the cracking of minute amounts of trithioacetone found themselves the object of hostile stares in a restaurant and suffered the humiliation of having a waitress spray the area around them with a deodorant. The odours defied the expected effects of dilution since workers in the laboratory did not find the odours intolerable ... and genuinely denied responsibility since they were working in closed systems. To convince them otherwise, they were dispersed with other observers around the laboratory, at distances up to a quarter of a mile [0.40 km], and one drop of either acetone gem-dithiol or the mother liquors from crude trithioacetone crystallisations were placed on a watch glass in a fume cupboard. The odour was detected downwind in seconds.


Flouroantimonic acid

A "Superacid", so reactive that it's difficult to even find material to store it in.

Quote
HF-SbF5 is an extremely corrosive, and toxic substance that is sensitive to moisture. As with most strong acids, fluoroantimonic acid can react violently with water due to the exothermic hydration. Only hydrogen fluoride can be used as a solvent for the acid, given that an aqueous solution can not be used. Heating Fluoroantimonic acid is dangerous as well as it decomposes into toxic fluorine gas. The only method of containment involves storage in a PTFE container as glass will dissolve upon contact. Safety gear must be worn at all times when handling or going anywhere near this corrosive substance. Fluoroantimonic acid can eat exposed flesh down to the bone while reacting violently with water present in human blood cells.


Dimethylmercury

Dimethylmercury is a mercury compound that allows mercury to be absorbed into the bloodstream through the skin.  It is toxic in very small quantities, causing acute mercury poisoning that is often fatal, although it can take several months to kill.  There is a famous incident of a chemist Karen Wetterhahn who died from getting a drop on her gloves, which penetrated through to her skin.

Quote
The toxicity of dimethylmercury was highlighted with the death of Karen Wetterhahn, a professor of chemistry at Dartmouth College, in 1997. Professor Wetterhahn specialized in heavy metal poisoning. After she spilled a few drops of this compound on her latex glove, the barrier was compromised, and within minutes it was absorbed into her skin. It circulated through her body and accumulated in her brain, resulting in her death ten months later. This accident is a common toxicology case-study and directly resulted in improved safety procedures for chemical-protection clothing and fume hood use, which are now called for when any exposure to such severely toxic and/or highly penetrative substances is possible (e.g., in chemical munitions stockpiles and decontamination facilities).


Hydrazine

Hydrazine is a widely used rocket propellant, both in monopropellant and hypergolic rocket systems.  It's also a strong reducing agent.  Really, Hydrazine's got it all - it's toxic, carcinogenic, corrosive, highly flammable, explosive in air at a wide variety of concentrations, and hypergolic with a wide variety of common materials including cellulose.  The safety protocols around Hydrazine mean that just fuelling up a satellite with it costa about $100,000.  When people talk about 'green' rocket fuels, what they really mean is 'anything but fecking hydrazine.'
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Ghostmaker

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2020, 08:12:47 pm »
Quote from: Nobby-W;1141724
Unstable, dangerous or noxious chemicals has been suggested, but let's go into a few examples:

Chlorine Triflouride

Hypergolic with just about everything - including glass, sand, concrete and water.  Maybe the alchemist has it as a cleaning agent to really sterilise their apparatus - what are they working with that needs it?  There's a famous except from Ignition! that describes a ClF3 fire:



Thioacetone

Extremely smelly, and very unpleasantly so.  



Flouroantimonic acid

A "Superacid", so reactive that it's difficult to even find material to store it in.



Dimethylmercury

Dimethylmercury is a mercury compound that allows mercury to be absorbed into the bloodstream through the skin.  It is toxic in very small quantities, causing acute mercury poisoning that is often fatal, although it can take several months to kill.  There is a famous incident of a chemist Karen Wetterhahn who died from getting a drop on her gloves, which penetrated through to her skin.



Hydrazine

Hydrazine is a widely used rocket propellant, both in monopropellant and hypergolic rocket systems.  It's also a strong reducing agent.  Really, Hydrazine's got it all - it's toxic, carcinogenic, corrosive, highly flammable, explosive in air at a wide variety of concentrations, and hypergolic with a wide variety of common materials including cellulose.  The safety protocols around Hydrazine mean that just fuelling up a satellite with it costa about $100,000.  When people talk about 'green' rocket fuels, what they really mean is 'anything but fecking hydrazine.'

Someone found Dr. Derek Lowe's 'Things I Won't Work With', I see :D And these are just mundane, real world chemicals; what kind of insanity do you get with magical reagents?

Omega

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2020, 10:41:24 pm »
Quote from: Nobby-W;1141724
Hydrazine

Hydrazine is a widely used rocket propellant, both in monopropellant and hypergolic rocket systems.  It's also a strong reducing agent.  Really, Hydrazine's got it all - it's toxic, carcinogenic, corrosive, highly flammable, explosive in air at a wide variety of concentrations, and hypergolic with a wide variety of common materials including cellulose.  The safety protocols around Hydrazine mean that just fuelling up a satellite with it costa about $100,000.  When people talk about 'green' rocket fuels, what they really mean is 'anything but fecking hydrazine.'

Russia was using this stuff extensively for their in the works moon landing rocket using some really ingenious systems to make this stuff work. Problem is the test rockets were the equivalents of small nukes if something went wrong. Which it did.  And if it was an airburst. Which did happen. Then you'd have this horriffic stuff raining down on the land. Which it also did.

If I recall right the stiff is just short of a near self sustaining molecular poison. Even a drop of the stuff on flesh could do extensive damage if its the same chemical Im thinking of.

I worked a few years with hazardous chemicals. Mostly acids. A few of which would binary into wonderful things like mustard gas if mishandled. One of our work warnings was "if you see someone suddenly drop to the floor unconscious. Do Not Approach Them! Move away and warn a supervisor.". We came close to having that happen. Luckily it was contained and no one was harmed. That I know of.

Omega

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2020, 10:45:59 pm »
One thing you will likely find in an abandoned lab, modern or fantasy, is beakers with not liquids. But dried residues depending on if containers are sealed or not and how well.

Same if you say came across an abandoned painters workshop. Some of the paints may have solidified. Thinners may have evaporated. Even in well sealed bottled depending on the types of material.

Opaopajr

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2020, 02:41:09 am »
A super friendly puppy in a box! :) It was left in suspended animation by one of those strange alchemical liquids, and only recently came to.

Useful for a tension relieving jump scare of scratching and wimpering. Also great for scampering around the PCs if released, to help knock stuff over (including PCs)! :D
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jeff37923

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2020, 06:23:35 am »
Quote from: Opaopajr;1141767
A super friendly puppy in a box! :) It was left in suspended animation by one of those strange alchemical liquids, and only recently came to.

Useful for a tension relieving jump scare of scratching and wimpering. Also great for scampering around the PCs if released, to help knock stuff over (including PCs)! :D

Or to show what could happen to the player characters when a chemical gets spilled on it!

"Oh, no! Not the puppy!"

Omega

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2020, 06:45:41 am »
Quote from: Opaopajr;1141767
A super friendly puppy in a box! :) It was left in suspended animation by one of those strange alchemical liquids, and only recently came to.

Useful for a tension relieving jump scare of scratching and wimpering. Also great for scampering around the PCs if released, to help knock stuff over (including PCs)! :D

Warhammer Quest: Your character finds a puppy that follows them around. Then it promptly croaks because this is Warhammer afterall. Your character spends ALL their gold building a monument to the puppy.
Given enough time and because this event can repeat, the landscape may end up dotted with puppy monuments. This is Warhammer afterall.

Opaopajr

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #28 on: July 26, 2020, 02:26:10 pm »
Quote from: jeff37923;1141774
Or to show what could happen to the player characters when a chemical gets spilled on it!

"Oh, no! Not the puppy!"


:confused: Oops! :eek: Did I do that? :o

Quote from: Omega;1141776
Warhammer Quest: Your character finds a puppy that follows them around. Then it promptly croaks because this is Warhammer afterall. Your character spends ALL their gold building a monument to the puppy.
Given enough time and because this event can repeat, the landscape may end up dotted with puppy monuments. This is Warhammer afterall.


:mad: In the GrimDark Future there is only pet cemetaries... and it forever rains ('reigns' :p) puppy ash! :mad:
Just make your fuckin' guy and roll the dice, you pricks. Focus on what's interesting, not what gives you the biggest randomly generated virtual penis.  -- J Arcane
 
You know, people keep comparing non-TSR D&D to deck-building in Magic: the Gathering. But maybe it's more like Katamari Damacy. You keep sticking shit on your characters until they are big enough to be a star.
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Nobby-W

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What's in an abandoned Alchemist's house?
« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2020, 04:06:35 pm »
It's widely used in hypergolic and monopropellant systems - most satellites have hydrazine monopropellant thrusters for orbit maintenance.  The tech is useful because Hydarzine has a long shelf life, remains liquid at low temperatures and you can get exactly the delta-V you want by metering a precise amount of fuel through the engine.

The Russians used to be quite big on Hypergolics (IIRC the upper stage of Soyuz still uses them) so there were incidents of locals investigating used boosters and getting poisoned by residual hydrazine splashed around from the impact.  I think the last thing the Merkins flew with Hypergolic boosters was Titan.
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