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Poison is the skill of creating or using poisons from plants, animals or a number of other sources both natural and beyond. Poisons, their use and effects are all a part of a large chain of various events that come together for a final and often fatal result. The wonder involved in poisons lies within each step of this chain where story and adventure takes place. There are effectively seven different links in this poisonous chain.


The Language

When working with poisons one must understand the language involved in the art. Below is a list of different terms related to poisons as well as a brief description.

Antidotes may be tailored to specific poison families or poisons of a particular strength. An antidote differs from antitoxin, which merely helps combat the effects of a poison.
A method of delivery that results in exposure when the target touches or is touched by the poison. A creature is exposed to contact poison if a poisoned item strikes the creature. A contact poison can take any form. Creatures without permeable skin are not susceptible to contact-delivered poisons.
Delivery Method
The method by which the target is exposed to a poison. There are four types of delivery methods: injury, ingestion, inhalation, or contact. Poisons can be crafted in different ways to have different methods of delivery; however, a particular dose of poison on hand must only have one delivery method.
A measurement of a single, functional unit of poison. The size of a dose depends on the type and nature of the poison. It may be one tablet, dram, ounce, nugget, pinch, etc. Generally, a dose of poison is a rather small amount.
Each phase of a poison's damage may be composed of one or more elements. These are discrete components of damage. For example, in a poison that deals damage to one's physical health and agility as its initial damage, the health is one element of damage while the agility is another.
Existing Poison
A poison that currently exists, even if the particular character does not know how to craft it. For example, though someone may not know how to extract a poison from a black lotus, there are people in the realm who do, it is bought and sold on the black market, and it would not shock an experienced assassin to come across it in the course of his endeavors.
A method of delivery that results in exposure when the poison is metabolized by the target's digestion process. Typically, a poison can only be delivered by ingestion if it can be swallowed. Ingestion poisons are usually solids or liquids. Creatures that do not have digestive systems are not susceptible to ingestion-delivered poisons.
A method of delivery that results in exposure when the target inhales the poison. Accordingly, a poison can only be delivered by inhalation if it is itself gaseous, can be delivered by aeration, or gives off toxic fumes. Not all gaseous poisons are inhalation poisons; such a poison could also be a contact poison. A creature that holds its breath can avoid exposure to inhalation-delivered poisons. Creatures that do not breathe are not susceptible to inhalation-delivered poisons.
Initial Damage
The damage that a poison deals immediately upon exposure.
A method of delivery that results in exposure when the poison is introduced into the target's bloodstream or related anatomical system. Generally this is accomplished by attacking the target with a poisoned weapon. Accordingly, an injury poison must be capable of being applied to a weapon. Any attack that causes damage is considered to expose the defender to the poison. Creatures without discernible anatomies are not susceptible to injury-delivered poisons.
Intended Poison
The poison that the poisoner is trying to create. Once created, it becomes poison on hand.
Known Poison
A poison that a particular person knows how to craft.
Magical Poison
A poison that is infused with magical energy in some way. The term, magical poison, includes two types of poisons: magically imbued poisons and magically modified poisons.
Magically Imbued Poison
A poison that operates as a method of delivering a magical effect. In lieu of dealing typical poison-like damage, a magically imbued poison subjects the target to a particular magical effect. For example, someone skilled in both poison and magecraft may be able to brew a poison that arouses a strong emotion in the target.}}
Magically Modified Poison
A standard, nonmagical poison that has been altered by means of magic. For example, a dose of large scorpion poison may be enhanced to increase its toxicity.
Natural State
Each poison has a natural state of solid, liquid, or gas. Some poisons may take different states during different stages of their use. For example, a lump of toxic mineral (solid) may give off poisonous fumes (gas) when dropped in water. A poison's natural state has an effect on how the poison is stored, applied, and delivered. The method of delivery will also have some bearing on the poison's natural state.
New Poison
A poison that has never been crafted before, i.e., is not an existing poison. A skilled poisoner might be able to distill the bile from an giant sea-snake, where none before were successful.
Each period of time that the target is susceptible to being affected by the poison. Many poisons have two phases of damage: initial and secondary with the first affect listed being the initial and the second being, well, secondary.
Poison Family
A group of poisons of varying strengths and qualities that originate from a particular source material. For example, araneida, aquatic, and hedge root are all poison families. Poisons of the same family generally deal the same type of damage with varying degrees of strength. Often, the amount or duration of the damage increase as the size of the source material increases. For example, gargantuan spider poison deals the same type of damage as large spider poison but deals more of it. Some poisons are so unique that they do not belong to any poison family.
Poison on Hand
A specific dose of poison that has already been created.
The power of the damage dealt by the poison.
Secondary Damage
The subsequent damage dealt by a poison. Generally, a poison deals its secondary damage one minute after exposure unless otherwise noted.
Signature Poison
A poison that is tailored to a specific and unique target, i.e., a particular person. It is the product of extensive toxicological research and study of the target. Normally, the purpose of such a dark endeavor is nothing less than the assassination of the target.
Single-Phase Poison
A poison that lacks either initial or secondary damage, i.e., has only one phase.
The ability of the poison to affect the target as measured by the amount, type and duration of the damage and effects.
Poison produced naturally by a plant or animal and used by that organism. Many poisons can be crafted from the organs of animals, but that does not make them venoms. For example, the poison a scorpion delivers with its stinger is venom, but poison that may be crafted from a scorpion's liver is not. A venomous creature is one that has a poisonous natural attack or defense mechanism.

The Crafting of Known Poisons

The most common use of the skill is the creation of known poisons. The poisoner gathers the tools and ingredients necessary and attempts to craft a dose or doses of poison with which he or she is already familiar with. As the poisoner progresses in skill they may learn how to craft poisons from additional poison families and with greater toxicity.

Learning Additional Poisons

A poisoner may also learn how to craft a poison by examining a dose of poison on hand. This requires the identification, appraisal and overall breaking down of the poison and thus learning the ingredients and how much or many are needed to compose the poison on hand. The poisoner must still possess the skill level required to craft that particular type of poison. If they did not know how to craft from that particular poison family and have the skill level required to do so, they learn how to create related poisons within that family. Note that the particular dose of poison studied is used up in the process. Generally, learning a poison in this manner also requires mizas to be spent in the amount equal to the price of a particular dose of the poison.

Tools and Ingredients: To craft a poison, a poisoner needs a variety of tools and specific environmental considerations. These include a level working surface (one doesn't want to spill this stuff), some containers (beakers, test tubes, mixing bowls, etc.), specialized implements (knives, tweezers, mortar and pestle, etc.) and a source of heat. Aside from the heat source, most of these tools can be acquired in an alchemists appraisal kit and an identification kit. Keep in mind that not all of these tools are required for every type of poison to be created. Given the nature of their art, most poison-crafters house their facilities in secluded areas where they are hidden from those who would cause them trouble. The poisoner must have the necessary ingredients on hand for the particular poison he is trying to create. The cost of these items is considered in the cost of the poison to be crafted. Note that if the crafter finds and harvests the source material for their poisons on their own instead of purchasing the ingredients, they effectively eliminate the cost requirement for said poison. Thus crafters are encouraged to seek out and harvest their source materials themselves.

Delivery: One must consider the method of delivery for the poison. Ingestion is usually the easiest delivery method as the poison is introduced directly to the inside of the body. The next fastest is by injury whereby the poison is capable of mixing with the blood through wounding. Inhalation and contact poisons are a bit more difficult to deliver and easier to defend against by comparison.

Duration and Toxicity: The more toxic a poison is, the more difficult it is to craft thus higher skill levels and rarer ingredients are required. Also, the greater the number of effects and longer the duration of a poison also calls for greater levels of skill on the part of the crafter.

Crafting New Poisons

Where the crafting of existing poisons is largely science, the crafting of new poisons is an art. Developing a unique poison to serve a specific end, while a difficult skill to master, can be quite rewarding and can make a poisoner more efficient in dealing damage, destruction and death.

The Creation Process To create a new poison, the poisoner must first breakdown what makes up the new poison. The poisoner identifies the poison he wants to invent, including all of the the source material, the creation process, and names. Once the poison is fully defined, the process for creating the first dose of a new poison is the much the same as creating an existing poison with the following exceptions.

Cost: The cost of crafting a dose of new poison is equal to double what it would otherwise cost using the rules for existing poisons. (Unless the crafter harvests their own source material)

Amount: The poisoner may only make one dose of a new poison. Future doses will require more work.

Subsequent Creation: Once the new poison has been created, it is no longer a new poison. It becomes an existing poison and, for the poisoner, a known poison. Like other known poisons, its creation process is thus easier.

Signature Poisons

The pinnacle of poisoncrafting is the creation of a signature poison, a material carefully tailored to eliminate an unsuspecting target. The process is a lengthy one as it can take many years to succeed at crafting one. The effect of the poison however is as thorough as the one who crafted it.

Study: Creating a signature poison requires great amounts of study to be done on the particular target. For every 30 days of research, at least 1/4 of the poisoner's time must be spent carefully observing the target; such as sleeping quarters, friends and relatives, the target's garbage, etc. This may be broken into smaller periods throughout that time and does not need to be consecutive. If the poisoner fails to do this every 30 days for as long as required, they lose an half of the time spent on research. Generally speaking, the level of poison to be created for a signature poison equals 30 days of research needed. Thus a level 1, novice level poison would take roughly 30 days of research to tailor it to a specific target. However, the more skill one has, the less time it may take. For example, a level 1 signature poison, crafted by a Master Poisoner, would take 1/4 the amount of time or a few days. A level 2 poison would take a Master Poisoner 1/2 the amount of time or 45 days, etc.

Crafting: Crafting the signature poison takes one day for each month of research put into the poison and the must have some part of the targets person such as a lock of hair or drop of blood or some other body fluid or body part. The cost of a signature poison is four times that of equivalent poisons however its success against the specified target is almost 100% except in the case of divine intervention or other greater form of interruption.


An antidote may be created to combat the effects of a poison. The easiest antidotes are made by a poisoncrafter to combat the effects of the poisons that they have created. These antidotes are made from similar ingredients as the poison albeit using a slightly different process. Antidotes may also be made to combat poisons not created by the poisoncrafter. These are more difficult to craft and require the crafter to break down the poison to learn its ingredients before crafting of the antidote may be possible. To create antidotes for poisons made by others, one must have a an equal or greater skill level than the poison to be combated. Thus if an antidote is needed for a strange L2 poison, the poisoncrafter must be at least L2 in order to craft it.

It is also important to note that just because an antidote can be crafted for a particular poison, that doesn't mean that it can be crafted in time to stop a poison from seriously harming or killing someone poisoned with it. Because the poison is already in the victim, it is more difficult to collect enough to craft the antidote and do it in a timely manner. Thus, if someone is already poisoned, crafting an antidote for it requires the crafter to be one skill level higher than the poison that they are trying to combat. So if an L2 poison is already affecting a victim, the crafter would need to have an L3 skill level to craft an antidote for it.

Antidotes usually cost as much as the poison itself and do not affect naturally occurring toxins or venom, only crafted poisons.

There are such things as natural antidotes. A natural antidote is a naturally occurring substance that acts as an antidote against one or more types of poison. By definition, natural antidotes are not created, they are collected. Once identified, actually collecting a natural antidote is usually not a difficult or involved procedure although they are not usually available for the more complex poisons with greater toxicity and potency.

Harvesting Materials

Much of the material that forms the basis of a poison can be harvested from nature. If a poisoner kills a giant scorpion, he might be able to drain the fluid from the creature's glands to brew some essence of scorpion gland. Doing so, carries an element of risk but rewards the skilled harvester by eliminating the cost and difficulty of obtaining raw materials on the black market.

Harvesting Process: Harvesting materials from creatures or even the environment can be tricky. If a source is damaged too much it may be impossible to harvest useful materials from it. Generally the poisoner must have some knowledge, either through lore or through other skills, of a particular source in order to harvest from it. Otherwise they take a serious risk of exposing themselves to the toxic substances within the raw materials and becoming affected by poisonous properties of the materials regardless of the normal method of delivery.

Doses Available For Harvest Based On Source Size:

Tiny or Smaller Source - 1 dose Small Source - 2 doses Medium Source - 4 doses Large Source - 7 doses Huge or Larger Source - 11 doses

Shelf Life

A dose of poison sealed in its container, will retain is toxicity for some time, but it won't last forever. Until they are applied or smeared on a weapon, placed in someone's food, etc., they will last for several years or more, depending on the nature of the poison. However, once applied, they begin to decay more rapidly. The rate of decay varies from poison to poison. As a general rule, a poison will retain its toxicity for a number of months equal to three times its level. Thus a level 2 poison would retain its potency for roughly six months after application.

Poison Families

Poisons can be categorized by family. A poison family represents a group of poisons that share a similar source material. As a result of this shared origin, poisons from the same family often share similar characteristics. Poison families are used in determining the poisons a particular poisoner knows and can be used in relation to others. The entries below give the general properties of poisons from that family as well as the more common family types.

Favored by water-based poisoners, these poisons are made from aquatic plants and creatures.
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of mizaharan spiders. Most spider poisons negatively affect physical strength.
This family is comprised of toxins made from trees, generally fruit trees or conifers. Such poisons are characterized by grassy or earthly odors. Additionally, tree poisons last longer than other types of poison; they retain their toxicity for a number of months equal four times their level instead of three.
Known among rangers and other hunters, these poisons are made from all manner of beasts; usually mammals.}}
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of mizaharan centipedes. Most centipede poisons negatively affect physical agility and overall speed of movement.
Poisons in this family are brewed from mildews, molds, mushrooms, and many others. Most fungus poisons have low potency but high toxicity and are relatively easy to find.
As the name suggests, these poisons are made from plant roots. The poisons in this family are not as powerful as the poisons in other families. However, it is the largest of the poison families.
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of bees, hornets, wasps, and the like. They are noted for the speed of their exposure times. Most hymenoptera poisons cause damage to physical speed and agility.
This family includes all toxins created from the exotic lotus flowers. They can have very different effects but are characterized by high potency. Lotus poisons have no natural antidotes thus making them some of the most sought after poisons among crafters and assassins alike.
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of worms. Most worm poisons cause negative effects to physical strength.
Poisons in this family are processed from naturally occurring rocks and minerals. Their qualities are as varied as what they are made from. Due to the relatively lower amount of refining required to create them, mineral poisons are somewhat easier to craft than others.
Crafted from mosses, which are usually dried and turned into powder, poisons of this family are marked by their strong odors and are some of the more common to find ingredients for and craft.
Non-Ferrous Metal
This family is dominated by ingestion poisons that frequently affect the digestive system. Most poisons in this family cause negative affects to physical health or nausea.
Poisons from this family are brewed from the remnants of jellies, oozes, and slimes most often found in subterranean environments. Harvesting raw materials from oozes is a relatively easy matter compared to other types.
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of scorpions. Most scorpion poisons cause negative effects to physical strength.
This family includes poisons brewed from typical species of snakes. Most snake poisons cause negative effects to physical health.
Poisons in this family are crafted from the remains of undead creatures. Even incorporeal undead creatures leave a faint residue upon their destruction. Undead poisons most often cause negative effects to physical health but effects can vary.
This family is comprised of poisons brewed from vines. It is important to note that these vines are often found in close proximity to roots which often makes for more productive harvesting. Poisons in the vine family are generally safer to handle than those of other families.

Prerequisites and Related Skills

Anyone with the right desire and overall mindset can become a poisoner however it is not a skill for everyone. In many cultures, among many races and throughout many regions, the use of poison is considered taboo, criminal and forbidden. A poisoner runs the risk of getting arrested, hunted or outright executed for practicing their art. In addition to the common stigma associated with poisons, one must possess and/or develop a wide array of skills in order to further perfect the art of poisoning. For example, in order for one to make poisons from the Hedge Root family, they would have to have knowledge of lore related to Hedge Roots or at least a novice level in the herbalism skill. If one were to want to craft a poison from the Serpente family, they would need some lore involving serpents/snakes or perhaps have at least a novice level in the Animal Husbandry skill with a focus on snakes. The general rule is that to make a poison from a certain family of poisons, one needs a lore or a skill related to that lore in order to do so.

As a final note, be sure to look at the existing poisons found in the Price List for examples of what a poison actually looks like; including format and details.

Skill Progression

Novice (1-25)
A Novice poisoner knows the basics of crafting poisons; using equipment found in an alchemist appraisal kit and/or identification kit. They are capable of creating poisons from up to 3 different poison families. Poisons crafted by a novice may do only minor to moderate damage to a target and the duration is normally no greater than 8-12 hours. Novice poisons normally only have one phase if they are doing moderate damage or two phases if they are doing mild or minor damage. The Lotus family is restricted for Novices as they do not yet have the knowledge required to work with such toxicity. Poisons of this level normally cost 1-150 gm to craft with 25-75 gm being the most common. Final costs set by moderator.
Competent (26-50)
A Competent poisoner has gathered a greater understanding of what it is to work with poisons. They are able to expand their knowledge to include 2 additional poison families for a total of 5. They can craft poisons that do minor to major damage to a target with a duration topping out around 12 hours. They often have two phases that each do moderate damage or a single phase that does major damage but lasts around 3-4 hours. The Lotus family is still restricted for Competent poisoners. Poisons of this level normally cost 151-750 gm with 300-600 gm being the most common. Final costs set by moderator.
Expert (51-75)
The Expert poisoner has nearly perfected their skill to an art. Their knowledge has expanded to the point where they know how to craft poisons from up to 8 different families. They are capable of bringing out the greatest effects from raw materials and their effects usually cause some form of permanent damage either to physical aspects of a target or in the form of permanent and severe scarring or other form of disfigurement. They can be either one or two phase with varying durations from a few hours to a few days. The poisoner still does not have the knowledge required to craft poisons from the Lotus family at this level. This level of poisons normally costs 751-2,500 gm with 800-1,500 being the most common. Final cost set by moderator.
Master (76-100)
The Master poisoner is pure perfection. They are able to craft poisons from all of the different poison families. They are capable of drawing properties from raw materials that can often be compared to a specific form of manipulating Djed. In fact, most poisons crafted at this level have supernatural effects that may actually benefit the target while also carrying a high price. These poisons are closer to drugs in some ways with positive and negative effects. Of course they can also remain simply poisonous and cause the greatest amount of pain, disfigurement and painful death that anyone can imagine. These poisons often last only short amounts of time if carrying beneficial properties or are usually permanent if only having negative effects. They are almost always one phase and the poisoner has full knowledge of how to craft poisons from the Lotus family; which is where most of the supernatural effects come from. This level of poisons normally cost 2,501-10,000 gm with 4,000-8,000 being the most common. Final cost set by moderator.