Existential Alchemy by dafoose
Skyrim » Alchemy
Added: 10/10/2013 - 09:48PM
Updated: 12/08/2016 - 04:16PM

142 Endorsements

2.9 Latest version

880 Unique D/Ls

1,359 Total D/Ls

31,598 Total Views

Uploaded by dafoose


Last updated at 16:16, 12 Aug 2016 Uploaded at 21:48, 10 Oct 2013

Perfection has no future.
Unless that future is an update.

Working on a video for the next update. There will be minor tweaks and balance changes to keep potions from cluttering your inventory.
I'll also add a new book and an NPC merchant.

I come before the nexus forums to humbly present my alchemy mod.
If you want to see my imagination come to fruition or include your own imagination, I recommend you trade your hesitation for haste and contact me with your intrigue.

German Translation by Notmyhome

Current Version: 2.9 description

The Overview
What this mod does...

-Renames Crafted Potions
-Renames Discovered Potions
-Edits Descriptions of Many Alchemy things: Perks, ingredients, magic effects, books, recipes, etc. Don't worry, I got the scope.
-10 new ingredients
-New effects overload, toll, coolant, doom, shapeshift, lumens, berserk, Aquambulant, spectralis, acute atrophy, antidote, and Fringium. 12 New effects in all.
-7 New Lorefriendly Skill Books Related to alchemy, placed around skyrim with merchants.
-Balanced pricing (attempted) and effect powers, based on stratfied assignments of rarity.
-Loot lists for current new items to appear on merchants and dead things.
-Merchant/vendor spawns drops and loot set
-Perk Changes including concentrated poison and green thumb. 4x and 3x possible upon rank 2 of each.
-Added slight controller rumble to potion making (beta feature, may not keep.)

Basically it makes your game more awesome, without breaking it or introducing a new system. AKA Magic.

Mods which go well with EXA (Existential Alchemy.)

I personally have up to 150 mods in use a time per character I tend to create around. Right now I'm playing a mage who also uses alchemy.

I compliment my mod with mods like:

Perks Unbound - Great for leveling up so you can pick and choose your perks.

Main Font Replacement



This mod is compatible with pretty much everything. Anything that's new is added as a new effect or other that I edited and tagged for clarification. Anything replaced is simply, a description, a value, or a name.

So if you see something out of place, it's because my mod is not listed above in the load order and things will look strange if one mod didn't edit everything within the same scope as I have.
The Details
Crafted Potions now go by different names. I renamed crafted potions for several purposes:
Convenience of Inventory and Lore. Hopefully elegance was inserted and preserved.
Here is an image containing all the effects. They were named as if alchemists themselves title the potions. For example, a potion of restore health is "life" because it restores health, which is essential to living, of course. In the game I heard characters calling it "Health Potions", not "potion of restore health", which seems redundant.

Ruin = Damage Health
Life = Restore Health
Disruptor = Damage Magicka
Magicks = Restore Magicka
Vigor = Restore Stamina
Atrophage = Damage Stamina

New effects include:
Fringium - A wabbajack poison
Coolant - Frost Poison
Doom - The End all be all of damage health poisons
Shapeshift - Turn into a Werewolf
Lumens - See in the Dark
Aquambulant - Walk on Water
Adrenaline - Dispel Magic Effects
Spectralis - Appear Spectral
Acute Atrophy - Disarm Opponent
Beserk - Gain Extra Damage
Antidote - Cure poison
Toll & Overload - Gain immense magicka, lose health.

Balance Changes:
Health Potions now restore and cost more, and Damage Magicka Regen potions are worth less gold and experience now.
No changes were made to the enhancements or improvements of magic and skills.
Ravage poisons were buffed.
Poison & Potion Tiers were given to restorative/damaging effects, in 3 tiers for variety and balance.

Overload gives you magicka for a short amount of time, but taxes your health for twice the time you had the magicka for, based on your alchemy skill level.

Skyrim Alchemy Philosophy Lecture


Effects = A unique magical property assigned as one of four features of an Ingredient.

Magnitude = The specific power of a specific effect

Properties = Reference to ingredients by purpose (healing vs poisonous)

Pure effects = The combination of two ingredients with 1 effect.

Combination Effects = The combination of 2 or more ingredients with more than 1 effect.

Population of Effects = The number of effects of one kind available.

Nerf = Reduction for balance.

Buff = Addition for balance.

Tricks = Concoctions with poisonous and restorative properties. (Damage Magicka Regen, Damage Magicka, Invisibility.)

Stratified Assignment = Organization by magnitude, grouped properties of similar effects and magnitudes.

DMR/DSR = Damage Magicka Regen, Damage Stamina Regen

Time = Seconds/minutes

Power = Scale, magnitude

Price = value of ingredient property

Understanding Vanilla Alchemy for the elegance contained.

Allow me to provide some disillusionment about vanilla alchemy...

1. Is Alchemy is overpowered in vanilla?

Yes. You can level up pretty fast. There is nothing I can do about this. Why? Because the problem is you.
The problem, is us.

We are impatient and will do things from lack of self control which allow us to indulge in ultra-fast leveling by combining mods like "harvest overhaul" and "Green Thumb Improved" etc, with this mod, You'll end up making 100's of potions you don't need, especially not with this mod.
So Just practice some self control and refine your alchemy through wisdom, not through leveling.

But that's not so bad. In fact, you have to know the rare recipes in order to level up fast, and make quite a few of them.

2. I think vanilla alchemy got it wrong: Shouldn't all potions and poisons be leveled so my inventory isn't so cluttered?!!! (-victim of OCD.)
Don't have a cluttered inventory.If you have a plan, you wont end up with an ordinal set of poisons and potions when you reach a higher alchemy level. Vanilla got it right.

Sell those useless potions: I'm sure a beggar will have fun with your latest DMR mix!
Use hot keys on your more populated potions.

3. Why does Vanilla assign the same bottle to every single potion and poison you make?

I don't know, that's one of my pet peeves and I'm trying to find an alternative model assignment for that.

4. Wtf what did you do to DMR (damage magicka regen) how'm I gonna make all my money for my new house now?!

Damage magicka regen is a great potion, quit wasting it on merchants for gold. I nerfed it also because Health potions are even more important, so I set the standard like this:
Ravage stamina - cheap shit
Restore Health - Expensive stuff.
And DMR is inbetween those two closer to the Ravage stamina end. I need to motivate people to sell health potions because that would be hilarious to do in game. Changing your behavior is part of my goal with this mod. Sell your health potions for good price because other people need health potions too, you know. It's a lucrative business!

5. So how did you balance an Alchemy system with hundreds of different effects and magnitudes?!!

I'm centralized around several concepts.

A. Mountain flowers will be my reference for comparison.

B. Rarity equals Power.

C. Combinations will reflect inherent effects (Damage health nerf for resist poison ingredients.)

D. Intuitive changes for Harmony of pricing/population/power/rarity/properties/usefulness.

E. Base potion effectiveness around Restore Health. (Concept that alchemy is the Conduit for magic and strength (stamina) So selling those health potions should seem tempting because of the value increase.)

F. Use previous Elder Scrolls Lore for Guidance.

Maturation of the Alchemist
To give you an understanding of the Alchemy in way that is still akin to vanilla in a more elegant fashion, let us define and outline what is/is not an alchemist player at various stages in the game.

What is a Novice Alchemist?

Level 10-30 in Alchemy.
Almost all ingredients are a mystery to you. You have not encountered every ingredient and you have not experienced every effect.
You hardly ever use poisons.
Your inventory is cluttered. (As it should be, you are a novice alchemist.)
You are usually low on useful potions.
You collect every ingredient you can find to raise your alchemy. (This is balanced and the more ingredients you have = the more experience in alchemy you receive)
Your potion/poison crafting is more of a supplementation to your skill set rather than a defining factor. (for example, 10 poison is assistance, 100 poison is assassination.)
You SHOULD be poor, but not broke. (this is one of the things I'm trying to balance.)
No snake-blood.
You make simple potions for simple purposes.
Experimentation not useful to you because you need to make potions with ingredients for skill.

What is a Talented Alchemist?

Level 40-70 in Alchemy.
You've encountered almost everything out there and can take a gander at what effects new ingredients have.
You use poisons occasionally to give you an edge in combat.
Your inventory is less cluttered. (Restoration potions will not clutter your inventory but various poisons and tonics will.)
You always seem to have one or more useful potions left over.
You tend to avoid lesser ingredients when collecting but still grab a few reagents to experiment with newer ingredients.
Your poison/potion crafting is useful as a skill and can assist you in combat, but it is still not a defining factor.
You should have quite a bit of money. *enough to afford a house*
You are trying to get snake-blood.
You make more advanced potions, but they are still rather simple.
Experimentation is becoming quite useful for you so you can make advanced tonics with more complicated effects.

What is a Master Alchemist?

Level 80+
You know almost everything about the ingredients of Tamriel. New ingredients excite you.
You use poisons all the time.
Your inventory is streamlined. (Nothing clutters your inventory and you always have what you want.
You always got a potion/poison for the job.
You only grab the ingredients you need for your next batch of potions poisons.
Your poison/potion crafting defines you in combat and outside of combat. Poisons are lethal and potions are strong.
You're rich from your love potions (kidding. but sounds fun. Note to self.) And publicity as a renown alchemical routiner.
You have snake-blood.
Advanced and complex potions and poisons.
Experimentation is useful for using ingredients on the fly and testing new ingredients to maximize available ingredient inventory.

PC Specs
3.2 quad core AMD black edition
GTX 660 ti (2gigs vram) x 2
8 Gigs DDR3 (1333 mhz)
120 gig Samsung SSD 850 Pro
GA-880GMA-UD2H motherboard

Check out my other mod,