Game Comparison: Potions

It’s perhaps a bit surprising, but MMOs are dense. It can be hard to find information in context: sure, you can easily find recipes for all the crafted items in a game, but how useful or common or popular are those items? That’s not something you can find out as easily.

Because of this, many designers are unaware of what’s happened in past games. The typical MMO developer I’ve met has only played two or three MMOs for any lengthy period of time. So when they sit down to create, say, the potion system for their next MMO, they can’t draw on the designs of what came before them. I don’t have a general solution for this (except to play as many MMOs as you can), but as an experiment, let’s try to add a bit of context about this one very narrow gameplay element: potions.

Potions aren’t always bottles of juice that you drink – they can also be magic scrolls or gems, or even theoretical concepts in the case of City of Heroes. The distinguishing feature of potions is that they are one-use items designed to aid or assist you in combat. Their effects are typically restorative or buffing in nature.

In order to keep it focused, I’ll ignore other consumables such as food, which have subtly different game semantics. It’s admittedly a pretty vague distinction, but I’ll do my best.

The following data is what I’ve been able to scrounge up through contacts or personal memory — there are probably plenty of mistakes and omissions. If so, please point them out and I’ll get it as accurate as possible. And feel free to provide a potion overview for other games!

UO: Potions for every occasion

In UO, alchemists could craft potions from collected raw ingredients. Certain potions, such as Night Sight, were fairly essential if you wanted to be able to see anything at night (without hacking your client). Poison-curing potions were critical for survival, as otherwise poison would quickly prove fatal. Most other types of potions were of modest value, although healing potions could be used in PvP to great effect.

Although there isn’t a notion of stacking potions in UO, players could craft Potion Kegs to store up to 100 uses of a single type of potion.

Everquest: Wussy Potions

I can’t find anybody who played EQ1 at very high levels to tell me how potions worked there. At mid-level, potions were impossibly expensive, and did very little. They could be handy for PvP battles, but even there they weren’t really worth the trouble. The lack of information on the web about EQ potions suggests to me that they weren’t particularly valuable even at high levels.

Asheron’s Call: Tools of the Killing Trade

In Asheron’s Call, there were three main types of potions, corresponding to healing, stamina restoration, and mana restoration — the three “bars” of energy that are used up in combat. Stamina potions were absolutely critical for melee classes; and it was not atypical to carry a few hundred with you into combat. (They stacked to a high number.) Each swing of a weapon drained stamina, and fights often ran fairly long, so that it was not atypical to drink several stamina potions during a single encounter. Thus, potions acted as a money-sink for most character types.

Mages typically carried stamina potions also. Though spellcasting doesn’t drain mana, mages could convert stamina into mana, and then replenish their stamina with potions. This was much more cost-effective than directly restoring their mana with expensive mana potions.

Health potions could be consumed in combat, and their repeated use often turned PvP encounters into extremely lengthy affairs.

Potions only provided restoration, but “magic gems” provided potent one-use buffs. These gems were mostly found in loot, though later they could also be purchased from NPC vendors. Thanks to their lengthy durations and noticeable effects, these were very valuable for certain types of twinking and power-leveling.

Dark Age of Camelot: ???

DAoC added potion creation after the game shipped, and I couldn’t find somebody with first-hand knowledge. If anybody can fill in the details, I’d appreciate it.

Clearly there are a vast number of potions and tinctures that can be crafted, but their importance, usefulness, and commonness are unknown.

Asheron’s Call 2: Mystery Juice

Potions in Asheron’s Call 2 could not be crafted, only found as loot. Like most other loot, potions were randomly generated, so the exact effect and potency of a potion varied very widely. Some potions had exceedingly potent effects, while others were almost useless. Because each potion was unique, potions could not be stacked in inventory. Players tended to keep only the most potent potions on hand in order to free up pack space.

Players could drink potions in combat, but a character that drank a potion performed a rather lengthy animation during which they could do nothing else. Drinking potions in combat was still sometimes worthwhile, but was very risky. A more typical use was as a buff before a dangerous boss, or as a boost before engaging in PvP.

EverQuest 2: Modest Tools

EQ2 had several types of consumable items, including potions and totems. The most typically-used potions provided modest buffs for a long duration.

There were also restorative potions that worked instantly (or near instantly) to heal damage or cure status ailments. These potions had lengthy timeouts — after consuming one, players could not use another potion for several minutes. This limited restorative potions’ usefulness to dire emergencies only. Useable in PvP, but not typically something that would turn the tide of a battle.

Totems behaved similarly to potions, but had a more unusual effect: invisibility, runspeed-buffs, or transformation into some other creature type are typical examples. Totems could be used five times before disappearing, rather than one time. Totems couldn’t be stacked in inventory, however, so in effect, totems were stacks of five one-use potions in a single inventory slot.

DDO: ???

The one hardcore ex-DDO player I know doesn’t remember how potions worked in DDO, so they can’t have played too important a role in the game. DDO has various stat-boosting and restorative potions, but my vague recollection is that they are only practical at low levels of play — at high levels, they are too expensive to be practical. Can they be used in PvP?

Lord of the Rings Online: ???

Again, my Lotro-playing friends have failed me. “Does Lotro even have potions? I don’t remember…” A quick glance around the web suggests that they have protective potions, but they appear to be rather expensive for the effects they provide.

City of Heroes/Villains: The Core of Loot

Although not called ‘potions’, CoH had ‘Inspirations’ which fill the same role. In a game with very little loot, Inspirations were the notable exception: players got lots of these, and they had a GUI bar just for storing them. Their effects were quite potent, and by using several at once, they could easily turn the tide of a battle.

They could be used in battle, and were intended for such use. They could typically be used in PvP, too. Their effects ranged from potent restorations and buffs to self-resurrections.

Although they could be purchased, the most potent Inspirations could only be found randomly in combat. High-level guilds could have Inspiration-generators in their hideouts, but I don’t know of anyone who did this, and I couldn’t say how useful that was.

World of Warcraft: Emergency Heals

WoW potions are of medium potency: they had noticeable effects but not enough to turn the tide of a battle. Although usable in combat, a player couldn’t drink multiple potions at once: after the first potion of a given category (such as restoration or buffing), they can’t drink another for several minutes or until the effect has worn off.

Their typical use is for “oh crap I’m about to die” restoration, or as a quick buff before a tough boss. Though potions can be used in PvP, their effectiveness is rather limited by the time-outs. In the past, there were numerous categories of buffing potions, so that players could have many simultaneous buffs. This was an effective raiding tactic, but this was changed relatively recently. The number of categories was dramatically reduced, so now only the most powerful player-crafted buff potions have value in raiding.

In addition to potions, players can find “magic scrolls” in loot. These behave the same as buffing potions, but their effects can stack with potions. Players can also select their target for a magic scroll: that is, they could use it on an ally or a pet, rather than using it on themselves, if they wanted to.

More Input Needed

Obviously I need lots more info for this topic! If you have experience with any of these games, especially ones marked with ???, please feel free to chime in. I’m also interested in hearing about other MMOs that aren’t listed here. Thanks in advance!

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20 Responses to Game Comparison: Potions

  1. Brimoonfang says:

    I like your article. The only MMO I’ve played is WoW, so let me offer a suggestion.

    You seem to be confusing Elixirs with Potions. WoW makes a strong distinction here.
    Perhaps the other MMO games did not.

    Potions are for quick heals or short-term buffs in combat, and share a two minute cooldown.
    Potions are indeed powerful enough to turn a wipe into a victory, but timing is everything here.
    Potions can drop from mobs, given as quest rewards, purchased from NPC vendors, or (most likely)crafted by players who chose the Alchemy skill.

    Elixirs are long-term buffs (duration anywhere from 30 min to 60 min), but you can only have
    one “battle” elixir and one “guardian” elixir active at a time. Flasks (i.e. super-elixirs)
    count as both battle and guardian elixir, last for 120 minutes, and persist through player death.
    All other buffs are lost upon player death.

    You can overwrite an active elixir at any time without waiting for the cooldown.
    Elixirs/flasks are VERY powerful, but expensive. Elixirs can be given as quest rewards (rarely), or crafted by players who chose the Alchemy skill. Some specialty flasks can be purchased from NPC vendors, but these are limited for use in certain zones.

  2. Ali Borat says:

    Sorry but you’re entirely wrong regarding Lotro’s potion system. Its implicated potion system is acknowledged to be coherent and thoroughly consistent, with drop/not drop widely recognized as being comparatively accurate, thus your whole argument is flawed as you can’t just randomly create opinions as facts. Assuming is mother of all fuck ups, Eric. Furthermore, I do however agree to a certain extend where you’re coming from; any suggestions how to implant a new system for potions, as such the old system has been used for year’s now, and be extremely demanding to implant a more sound system. Although, it‘s logic is like another refutation to Descartes ontological argument….

  3. Regarding EverQuest, the only potions I recall being useful from the early days were the 10-shot potions of Spirit of Wolf (a run speed buff) and Shrink (so large races could maneuver through dungeons more easily). They functioned like the spells of the same name when quaffed.

    In a later expansion (I forget when– maybe Dungeons of Norrath?) they added a bunch more potion types to the game which simulated a number of other restorative and regenerative spells. Regeneration, clarity/breeze, quick heal over time spells, et cetera. These were available for purchase at Plane of Knowledge vendors and probably were craftable by players. While too expensive for a brand new player, they weren’t that expensive for someone who had been playing for any length of time.

    I never had a chance to find out how useful they were for raiding, but they were extremely useful in low to middle-high levels for soloing when you couldn’t find a group or a high level friend to PL you.

    As for DDO, I never got past level 6, but potions seemed pretty handy in a number of cases. Wands are technically more efficient (assuming you have the skill to use them), but especially for curse removal and poison negation potions are nice. Also, they provide quick, one-shot mage buffs like mage armor or jump that can be fun to use. You wouldn’t buy those ones, but they’d be fun to play with when found.

  4. Kevin says:

    In the interest of history, it’s probably also good to make a distinction between pre- and post-Burning Crusade potion/elixir use in WoW.

    Potion use has generally stayed the same. A 15 sec – 2 minute buff, heal, or mana restore, with a 2 minute cooldown, while being relatively cheap to craft or buy.

    Elixirs are completely different post-Burning Crusade. In release WoW, there was no limit to the number of elixirs players could have, and most stacked with each other and with flasks. This became incredibly prohibitive for raiders, since Blizzard was forced to create encounters that were tuned to the maximum-buffed player, who would end up spending a week’s worth of money in a single raid on potions.

    Blizzard realized this mistake in The Burning Crusade and reduced the effect of elixir stacking to that described in Brimoonfang’s comment.

  5. Scott Jennings says:

    Potions in DAOC were on timers and had stacking limitations that prohibited them from being used more than occasionally. They came in healing and buffing flavors; the buffs were inferior to those cast by players, and most competitive players had a “buffbot” that filled that function.

  6. Michael says:

    I find it hard to discuss potions without discussing the closely related “clicky”, or equiped gear which has a usage action.

    Games I know more about

    AC1:

    You’re pretty much on the money here. Healing kits were often used in place of health potions, and Stamina->Mana spells in place of mana potions, but stamina elixirs were very, very common. When you ran out of stamina elixirs, it was time to head back to town and sell.

    Another interesting class of “potions” in AC1 were mana stones, which were essentially potions for your items.

    DDO:

    Your basic healing potions can be purchased (expensive) or found. Most people I know carry several, and non-healers that want to solo may carry a lot. There are mana potions (hard to get), and various other useful potions that can be gotten by turning in “collectables” for things like curing blindness. These are reasonably farmed, and can be key in certain quests.

    Player mana is a precious commodity for spellcasters, so alternative ways of casting spells are favored, so you’ll use a potion of cure blindness rather than cast the spell. This also means wands and scrolls are a major part of a spellcaster’s arsenal. While those are consumable, you probably wouldn’t consider them potions.

    Most high level players are carrying around multiple-use equipped items (so not potions by your definition) such as rings and armor that cast spells (restricted to some number of casts per rest).

    LotRO:
    —–
    Everyone I know carries around a stack of healing potions for that occasional add or close boss fight. They are quest rewards, craftable, and found as drops. My Minstrel carries around some mana potions too.

    Other common consumables are things which give your party “hope” and things which buff hunter attacks. Lotro has a bunch of potions for things (removing wounds, reducing fear, etc) which have basically no use in regular gameplay.

    Of all the games I’ve played a lot of, I think I’ve used the least “potions” in LotRO.

    WoW:

    Wow has a ton of single-use consumable things, and they’re not all on the health/mana/resto potion timer. I’m carrying around a full bag worth of one-shot gimmicks, like a stack of target dummies, grenades (for their stun effect, not the negligeable damage), buff potions, and some quest rewards which function as potions but on their own cooldown timer. However, unlike AC1, I almost never use these “potions”. My high-level experience is pre-Burning Crusade, and sounds like it isn’t really valid any more.

    Wow also has a ton of usable equiped gear. I’m carrying a cloak that lets me go into the death dimension (1 charge), a necklace with a spirit buff (10 charges), and a trinket that removes polymorph effects (10 charges.) Not all such items have charges, but all (that I’ve seen) have cooldowns.

    My use of consumables (like buff elixirs) is directly related to being, or regularly playing with, someone that will make them for me. I’m most likely to use them when doing instances, when the challenge is higher, the cost of failure is higher, and the rewards are higher.

  7. Grimwell says:

    Very good article, and a fun topic to look at for anyone who’s actually going to design such a system.

    The one thing that really struck me as strange is the info about the need for potions in AC1. I only played for the first few years, as a caster on Darktide. In that time I never relied on potions to stay in combat.

    I’d use the stamina to mana spell as you mentioned, then health to mana, and then drain health on my target. In PvP I’d obviously skip a little detail there and not give up easy health to the enemy; but for PvE that rotation really worked well. Especially after my spells got over the power curve and I could drain X of something and gain X+(bonus) of mana. Say 50 points of stamina would be turned into 60 of stamina or so (example of the math, may not be accurate to the numbers).

    I’d get into these little mid combat loops shuffling the bars around, and since each shuffle was gain I’d never have to stop… as each use was a gain.

    Or am I just crazy? I do know for sure that I didn’t rely on potions at all. They were just loot to me.

  8. Hermes says:

    AC2 had another interesting quirk, actually. Since there were no NPCs in the world until late in the game’s life, you’d occasionally get potions as loot items that would give you a kill quest when consumed.

    Yeah, I don’t understand it, either.

  9. Andy 'Denour' Gillis says:

    I’m not sure I would put the AC2 quest bestowal widgets in the same category as potions. Correct me if I’m mistaken Eric, but at the time that these were created, the designers were trying to find any way they could to put quests into the hands of players – aside from talking to a giant stone head. A potion, at least in my mind, is some consumable that will temporarily alter the players’ statistics in one way or another.

  10. Virida/psyloche says:

    Im mostly a AO/EVE player, and in anarchy, potions exist in the form of pills found in missions who give a boost if used. it need some skill trained who is mostly not used, and the point could just as well be used to train up the skills you could be trying to buff, so its not usefull. Hackable profession based items exist(grafts), who can be clicked, and are on a timer, after the hack, the class(profession) restriction dont appear more, and you get a item clickable, who give buffs as transform to an animal, a nanorobot “spell like” program who runs shields, buffs, etc. Mostly a novelty, but used to gain last edge in PVP, and for some challenging PvE playing styles as “kiting”, running in circles and shoot at close combat monsters with long range weapons.
    The “pills” ive not used after playing the game for 6 years, and some of the grafts is nice, and great, most are junk.

    EVE got some consumables who can be made, in form of player made drugs. it is made in pvp territory, and is concidered illegal in non-pvp areas of games(guard ships at gate snag it, and withdraws some mills of isk, size dependant on amount of drugs). Almost exclusively used in PvP, as far i know, since it give no sense to use it in any other aspect of gameplay of EVE.

    Atm i asked ppl in my eve corp, didnt get much feedback on LOTRO potions from LOTRO players :)

    Lineage2: potions are a life saver, it can save you from loosing 1 hour of lvling or more, ive never ever, been without potions in L2 after i gained some experience with how the game worked, health potions are a life saver, and a speed potion is great too(to run from monster trains :P).

    Rising Force online(RF online, corean mmo): it use the Diablo system, you eat potions as mutant cartoon mice eat cheese, ive had stacks of 99 health potion stacks in full backpacks of them(wow style backpack inventory).
    virida from EVE’s mindstar technology, Psyloche from AO’s Angels of the night.

  11. Michael says:

    Grimwell: One of the characters I played was spec life and could drain well. To a good life mage, every monster is a walking potion :) It is all based on what your character is like; and I suppose that’s something neither Eric or I hit upon. The character I was thinking of is a 3-school archer, and I believe Eric played a meleer. While I have seen meleers cast health->stamina with a Life Magic Mastery wand, I think potions were more common.

    I didn’t like the shuffle on my archer because it took so long. I’d be standing there for like a minute casting transfer and heal spells until I was ready to continue. Also recall that you have to have at least one full bar to start the shuffle efficiently, and without reliable drains, potions or healing kits would get my cycle going. It’s not like the potions were expensive… I wager the scarabs and whatnot cost more, actually.

  12. Sean Motto says:

    Michael: In LOTRO, I tend to use wound and fear potions a lot, at least at the higher levels. I play as a guardian, and I get wounds that knock my block or parry (important for a guardian of course!) down a lot, often 2/3rds or more of my block chance. And there’s several mobs that apply wounds that knock armor down, which for a tank class isn’t such a good thing.

    Plus, there’s these annoying fear debuffs called “dreads” and “major dreads” (unrelated to the dread system) that remove, in the case of the major dreads, more than 200 will and fate, and over a hundred in the case of the dreads. This basically means that my total power (governed by will) is shot down to the bottom of the toilet, and my power and morale regen in combat (governed by fate) is all but nil. And, since will also governs out of combat power regen, it sends my downtime sky-high as well.

    A lot of the boss fights have timed debuffs that can, in some cases, kill you when they expire. And even in non-boss fights, I often have timed poisons or wounds that on expiration stun me for 15 seconds, or root me for a long time, which means that they have to be removed.

    So yes, at the lower levels, debuff removal potions aren’t very important. But at high levels, they’re well worth even 8 silver apiece.

    And then of course, you have the athelas (healing) and celebrant (power/mana) potions. But those are harder to get ahold of, as the debuff removal potions can be bought at a vendor, while the athelas and celebrant potions are player crafted, or given out as the occasional quest reward. However, they’re still quite handy if you do have some.

  13. Grimwell says:

    I think you are right Michael, I was a four school caster when that became a huge factor for me. I’d pull a health to mana, drain health on my target, and then hit stamina to mana. I’d also drain mana and stamina off my target once or twice… walking potions… perfect words for how I played it. ;)

  14. Sandra says:

    *nods at Grimwell and Michael* In AC1 I played an portal-only sword (translation: specialized sword mastery and trained item magic, of which I only used the portal spells) and I wouldn’t leave town without 60+ health potions and 100+ stamina potions.

  15. Comments above on the LOTRO potions are pretty much accurate, but I’ll go into greater detail:

    Morale / Power: Very useful, crafted by Scholars, also given out as quest rewards and random treasure drops. They are level gated, so you can only use a potion of a certain power at your level, although there are crafting crits that are more powerful. Potions are on a cool down. I think just about everyone carries a stack of these, especially at higher levels, as they are a great “oh crap” item.

    Hope Tokens: These are consumable items that give a short term Hope buff, useful in counteracting the dread of certain boss fights. Most high levels carry these, as high levels of dread pretty much hose you in fights.

    Scrolls: These are items crafted by Scholars that provide a short term buff to melee/missile/tactical damage and avoidance.

    Ailment Cure Potions: These are the weakest potions in the game. They remove certain types of ailments, such as disease, poison, etc. However, they are limited in power, so they will only remove ailments of a certain strength. In addition, they only remove one of that type of ailment. That means if you have several disease ailments on you (which is pretty much standard for a monster who does disease), you will only get 1 ailment removed. In addition, there is a cool down on the usage, so if you don’t get the ailment off you want, you are kind of hosed. They do have limited usefulness, especially the Fear removing potions, as for a Minstrel there are Fear ailments that completely bar my ability to heal (or do anything for that matter). If the potion gets off right, you’re a happy camper. If it doesn’t, you’re still hosed.

    Of the above potions, I’m really hoping we get to spend some time on the Cure ones. The others are pretty useful, but I don’t know how much of a market there is for them on the Auction House.

  16. Bryant says:

    More on WoW:

    Healing potions are “oh crap” buttons in high end raiding. You take one when you’re down a lot of health and you have reason to believe that the healers can’t help you.

    Mana potions are a standard form of mana regeneration. I assume that healers learning a raid encounter may need to chug a mana potion every time the cooldown is up in order to have enough mana to last throughout the encounter. Some offensive casters are also in that boat.

    There are various more specialized potions, which fill different niches. Free Action potions remove stuns, for example. Ironshield potions raise your armor level — it’s typical for a tank to chainchug those in some encounters in order to stay alive.

  17. anticitizen.one says:

    I played EQ on and off since its release, so can give a little insight possibly. I do recall in its early days potions where pretty much useless due to extreme cost and weak effects. Eventually when I started playing the game again around the Legends of Ykesha expansion, player made pots were quite popular, mainly the run speed (SoW) and shrink as mentioned above, but also the invisibility potion too. I used invis pots on practically a daily basis on my paladin at high levels and always having a 10 use pot in my inventory was mandatory for traveling through dungeons. Given the economy of the game at the time, these where really very affordable for a higher level character.

    I’ve also played WoW a fair bit so I’ll comment there too. At lower levels potions generally act as a “oh crap” tool to save yourself in a close npc battle or possible allow you to beat an extra hard npc that is just a little out of your normal killing range. However, in raids potions really act as a crutch to beginner raiding guilds (at least pre BC, probably still valid now too). When my guild was first learning Molten Core every raid member made use of fire resistance elixirs on practically every fight that required high fire resistance and everyone carried mana and health potions to extend their character just a little bit more. And it really made the difference in the beginning. Once we started to gain better gear raiding and also fire resistance gear sets, the potions became more optional and for emergencies only.

    Wow also had the notion of pvp only potions, essentially potions that were extremely cheap, but could only be used inside a pvp battleground. The cost was trivial enough you would never think twice about using one in a sticky situation.

  18. Felipe Budinich says:

    You do not have Dofus on your MMO list (it’s a turn based strategic rpg, pretty much Final Fantasy Tactics online).

    In dofus there are several kinds of potions, meat, fish, bread, scrolls and candies. Healing items are required by every player, as healing without that aid is painfully slow. There are some function specific potions that are also pretty much indispensable for some builds, as with scrolls.

    ****Potions:

    Healing Potions: The most usual kind, easily craftable, they recover a certain amount of hp within a range (from 20 to 50 for example, and higher level ones recover even from 500 to 1000).

    Energy Potions: In dofus when you lose a battle you suffer energy loss, and when you run out of energy you become a ghost, if you are a ghost you’ve got to head to a Phoenix Statue to revive. But you can keep your energy high by using energy recovering items, most usual kind are potions. Extremely expensive for the average player, mostly used by high level players that don’t want to miss a minute of action (i make my ingame money with these haha).

    Dyes: Some tailoring recipes require a special kind of potion to be crafted, there are several dyes that acomplish this, they are mostly a money sink for crafters. Hard to make, not that expensive because almost no one uses those recepies (there is better gear that can be crafted or dropped that does not use it)

    Memory Potions: They are used to craft Signature runes, a material used by high level crafters that want to sign their work. Another money sink

    Potion of Old Age: A potion used to craft energy potions and also used to craft Job loss potions (you can only have 3 jobs in dofus, for example if you are a Farmer/Baker/Alchemist and you want to become a Miner, you’ve got to lose one of the jobs, or because you hated it).

    Transportation Potions: There is a small selection of potions that allow you to teleport, one for each aligned city (Bonta potion, and Brakmar potion), House Potion (allows you to teleport to your house), Recall Potion (teleport to your last saved position), Guild House Potion, and Guild Paddock Potion. Most people only use Recall and one of the Aligned Ones, but they are fairly inexpensive.

    Spell Loss potions: Bought from a NPC at your class temple, they let you forget spells you’ve learnt and re arrange the points you used to level the spell up.

    ****Bread/Meat/Fish

    Healing Variety: These ones heal but they do heal a fixed amount of HP, not a variable one.

    Healing + Energy: There is no energy only food, but theres food that gives energy AND hp

    Healing + Stat Boost: These ones heal and give a permanent boost to some stat up to a certain threshold.

    ****Scrolls

    Spell Scrolls: These ones let you learn a new spell not avaliable to your class as-is.

    Stats Scrolls: These ones give a permanent stat boost until a certain threshold, required for some specific builds, and a extravagant expense for normal builds (in the end if you scroll your base stats to the max, compared to a non-scrolled character, you are only a 15% more powerful and since the game has actual strategy a 15% is almost negligible). Most people are lured into this kind of scroll, so the price is really high.

    Scroll of Spells: This ones give you a spell point (used to raise the level of your spells), useful but not vital, and damn expensive. (it is way better to plan ahead and raise your spells in a certain order)

    Experience Scrolls: There are scrolls that give experience, drop randomly or they can be exchanged with npcs, but the amount of exp is negligible, no one uses them (unless you drop them)

    Weapon Skill Scrolls: they allow you to learn a spell that lets you imrpove your abilities with a certain kind of weapon. They used to be really expensive but they upgraded the drop rate.

    ****Candies:

    Healing.

    Healing+Energy.

    Specific: There are several specific candies that give you some vodoo powers, like healing more during battles, +100% exp won per fight, increased drop rate, etc… these are raaaare, non sellable, and they give bonuses for a certain amount of battles.

    ****Pills:

    These raise the stat cap on pets (for example your pet gives +100 hp, but if you feed it a pill and it can give 105, if you feed them two pills they die)

    ****Pet/mount food

    Enripsa Powder: recover hp to your pets.

    Pet specific food: each pet can eat a certain range of stuff from seeds, to fish, to metal, to other pets ghosts, and they raise stats this way (there are other pets that do not require to be fed and have fixed stats, and others that depend of the amount of monsters of a certain kind you’ve killed).

    Fish/Kaliptus Leaves: Dragoturkeys eat these to recover energy, they don’t lose hp but they lose a certain amount of energy everytime you use them. (they give bonuses similar as the ones given by pets but their stat bonuses are raised by giving them experience instead of food).

    PD: I just realized how complex the whole consumables system was in this game :-p

  19. Liambic says:

    To add a more recent development:

    Potions in Age of Conan are moderately useful. They provide a very low instant effect, but then persist with a “regen” type effect for usually 60 seconds, which is also the timeout on them. Each of the three restorative potions (health, mana, stamina) are on separate timers, so you can have one of each going at once. These compliment the healing system in the game (which focuses on heals over time instead of burst healing), but at best will help you survive only a few extra seconds if not used very early in a fight. As the alchemy profession hasn’t yet been fixed in the game, buff potions haven’t been seen (outside of the food category).

  20. Will says:

    To Expand on how potions can be implemented poorly I would like to use DDO, I had a month off and the Realm First lvl 10 (max) before I left DDO.

    Potions had no cooldowns like in WOW and other games. You could easily solo most content that normally took 5 people just because of potons and or wands.

    I was able to level my first char with a friend but my second we stockpiled 800 or so potions and just solod my way through until lvl 10 (much faster then if I had a good group of players without potions)

    The problem wasn’t only that the potions had no cooldown but because the game was slow paced and heavily relied on the mana conservation but with potions being so readily available we could heal infinitly longer with them then we ever could with a healing class making healing trivial. (I started with a Cleric to heal but quickly stopped playing him for a Warrior that could carry more potions and kill everything on his own)

    This took away from the gameplay and ruined the group aspect, you no longer needed to group up, in fact sometimes it was more of a hassle and timewaste to do so.

    But there was a lot more issues with that game then just the potions when launched.

    note: wands were limited to specific classes.