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The art of alchemy is widely used in The Witcher, not just by Geralt, but by other characters as well.


For the main article, see Formulae.

All alchemical creations are based on formulae. These recipes are generally found in the form of scrolls, but some are acquired through word of mouth. Scrolls can be purchased, found or acquired as rewards for services rendered.


As mentioned by Kalkstein, when asking him about alchemy, formulae can be obtained by experimenting. This method requires manually mixing ingredients along with an appropriate base in an attempt to create a new potion, oil or bomb. The result will always be an unknown potion, oil or bomb and must first be tested in order to see if the experiment works. If your ingredient combination was correct the formuae will be added to your journal and can now be used just like any other unlocked recipe. If it doesn't work then the experiment will likely hurt Geralt, or in the case of oils his sword.

When experimenting to find formulae there are 56 possible combinations for 3 ingredient bases, 126 for 4 ingredient bases, and 252 for 5 ingredient bases. This is a total of 434 possible combinations for each type, a grand total of 1302 combinations. Keep this in mind when you wish to experiment in finding formulae when experimenting.

It is possible to tell if an experiment is a failure or a success based on their inventory icon as failed experiments always have the same icon while all success' have individual icons. For example if you mix Substances Small VitriolSubstances Small RebisSubstances Small Aether while using a potion base it will unlock the recipe for White Honey or Specter Oil if you use a blade coating base instead.

A clear benefit of using this method is that any recipe can be obtained at any time. This also includes mutagenic potions like Werewolf's Wrath, however, since those require unique ingredients you only have 1 attempt at getting the recipe correct, also you will usually obtain the appropriate recipe prior to obtaining the unique ingredient.


For the main article, see The Witcher ingredients.

Mixtures (potions, oils and bombs) are created by combining selected ingredients, which include herbs, monster parts and minerals, with a medium, referred to as a base. The base determines the type of mixture to be created. Alcohol is the base for potions, grease is used for oils, and black powder serves as the base for making bombs.

  • Plant Extracts: petals, leaves and roots can be picked directly from plants, provided that Geralt has acquired the Herbalism skill and knows the alchemical use of a given plant (for example, from having read a book about it).
  • Monster Extracts: after defeating a monster, Geralt can extract components from its corpse, provided he knows the alchemical uses of these body parts (having read a book about the beast in question).
  • Minerals/Liquids: available in alchemy shops, they can be purchased without any special skills or knowledge, but they can be relatively expensive.

Basic substances[]

Alchemical ingredients all contain one of the six substances shown below. Just click on the icon for a more complete description of each substance:

Mixture formulae list the proportions of substances that need to be mixed rather than ingredient amounts. For instance, White Gull (Substances Small VitriolSubstances Small VitriolSubstances Small Rebis) is obtained by mixing two measures of vitriol and a measure of rebis with concentrated alcohol.

Substances are present in various ingredients, consequently various combinations of the latter may be used as long as they contain the required substances. For example, vitriol is found in both sewant mushrooms and in ghoul blood, so either of these ingredients may be used to create White Gull.

Additional substances[]

There are three additional (or secondary) substances: Substances Small Albedo albedo, Substances Small Nigredo nigredo and Substances Small Rubedo rubedo. A given ingredient may contain only one of these substances, or may contain none. If all ingredients selected to create a potion (and only a potion) contain the same additional substance, the resulting potion will provide the following additional benefits:

  • Substances Small Albedo Albedo dominance — Reduces toxicity of all potions consumed within the next in-game hour.
  • Substances Small Nigredo Nigredo dominance — Increases damage inflicted by 20% for 4 hours.
  • Substances Small Rubedo Rubedo dominance — Accelerates regeneration of vitality lasting 4 hours.
Example: The Bindweed potion requires 1 aether, 1 quebrith, and 1 vermilion ingredient. If mixing an aether ingredient containing albedo with quebrith and vermilion ingredients which contain rubedo, a standard Bindweed potion will result because all of the ingredients don't contain the same additional substance. However, if mixing an aether ingredient containing rubedo with a quebrith ingredient containing rubedo and a vermilion ingredient containing rubedo, the result will be a Bindweed potion with the dominant substance rubedo.
  • Bindweed (standard) = aether + quebrith + vermilion + alcohol
  • Bindweed (standard) = aether (albedo) + quebrith (rubedo) + vermilion (rubedo) + alcohol
  • Bindweed (rubedo) = aether (rubedo) + quebrith (rubedo) + vermilion (rubedo) + alcohol
Another thing to bear in mind is that White Gull can also be mixed to contain a dominant substance as well as being used as a potion base. If it has a dominant substance and is used to create another potion, the rest of the ingredients need to contain the same secondary substance as the White Gull or a normal potion will result. If it contains no dominant substance while the rest of ingredients all contain, say, rubedo, then a potion containing rubedo will result.

Also, potions with a dominant secondary substance will stack separately from "regular" potions in Geralt's inventory.

Special ingredients[]

Special ingredient Items which can be obtained by slaying unique monsters, and occasionally, from plants. These can be used to create unique potions with powerful effects (often granting additional talents to be used to obtain skills, or granting special skills directly).

Creating Mixtures[]

Game icon alchemy big


To create a mixture, make sure you have the required ingredients first, then find a place to rest and, while meditating, choose the Alchemy icon. The Alchemy panel includes a mixture brewing window and provides access to previously gathered ingredients.


alchemy tutorial image
basic alchemy tutorial image
  • left-click on the vial icon to create potions
  • place the base (alcohol, grease or black powder) in the highlighted slot
  • place the remaining ingredients in the slots surrounding it
  • click Mix to create the mixture and add it to Geralt's Inventory

Known formulae appear on the left side of the Alchemy panel. A formula is available or "activated" when Geralt possesses all required ingredients and a base of appropriate potency. Clicking on a formula in the list will transfer the necessary ingredients and base to the mixing slots, but possibly not the exact ingredients you want. Any suboptimal choice of ingredient can be replaced by dragging the preferred item and dropping it onto the one to be replaced.

Mixture categories:

  • Potions — may be imbibed, affect only Geralt, based on alcohol;
  • Oils — used to coat sword blades, they affect any opponents wounded with the sword, based on grease;
  • Bombs — affect creatures and beings in Geralt's immediate vicinity, based on black powder.

Mixtures are most often created based on formulae which list substances that must be mixed with a base. Substances are found in ingredients that include herbs, minerals, and monster parts. A given substance, for instance vitriol, might be found in several different ingredients, meaning that potions based on vitriol can be composed in many different ways. Any formula the witcher learns (reads, hears about) is automatically added to the Alchemy section of the Journal.

Mixtures can be created without a formula by trial and error. Each such attempt results in the creation of an unknown mixture, the use of which is potentially hazardous, for unlucky mixtures can be harmful, possibly even fatal. However, if the ingredients are matched correctly, Geralt automatically receives the formula for the mixture he has discovered.

Icon Show potions Potions[]

For the main article, see The Witcher potions.

The transformations witchers undergo as children enable their mutated bodies to use magic potions that would be deadly to an ordinary person. These potions increase witchers' fighting abilities, render them immune to venoms, enable them to see in the dark. Witchers usually drink magic decoctions in preparation for a fight, but do so less frequently in combat due to lack of time.


  • To consume a potion, right-click on it in the Inventory.
  • Potions can also be placed on the witcher's belt (or quickslot), in which case they can be activated from the main game screen with a left-click of the mouse.
  • Potions vary in the amount of time they remain active. Some decoctions can produce effects that last a few minutes, some 8 hours, and still other effects are permanent (mutagens).

Witchers' potions are toxic and slowly poison Geralt, though one of his special abilities is a tolerance for toxins, represented by the green status bar (below the Endurance and Vitality bars) in the game screen. Each potion consumed increases the body's level of Toxicity, the green status bar. If this passes a certain point, Geralt becomes dizzy and loses Vitality. If his tolerance level is exceeded, Geralt first loses consciousness, then dies.

Meditation rids the body of poisons rapidly. If they expire, current potion effects will be canceled during time spent meditating.

Icon Show oils Oils[]

For the main article, see The Witcher oils.

From studying the weaknesses of various monster species, the witchers gained knowledge that allowed them to develop deadly blade coatings. These coatings, referred to as oils, employ simple magic and are adapted to take advantage of vulnerabilities in each beast's physiology.

For example, knowing that he may face a ghoul, the witcher prepares Necrophage Oil and coats his weapon with it before the battle. The oil will also be effective against other necrophages like graveirs.

Information on monsters' weaknesses, including their susceptibility to blade coatings, can be found in books that record the experiences of generations of witchers. When the witcher reads a book of this kind, the knowledge he acquires about a given beast appears in his Journal.

Note that oils can only be created if Talent points have been invested in the Oil Preparation skill.

Oils are created much like other mixtures, the ingredients are mixed with a base, which in this case is grease.

Blades can be coated with oils from the Inventory at any time, but it does take time to do this, so the middle of a battle is not considered a "good" time.


  • Click and drag the oil onto a weapon of choice.
  • Oils wear away over time, but they all have a duration of 24 hours.
  • Applying a new coating will replace any oil previously placed on a blade.

Icon Show bombs Bombs[]

For the main article, see The Witcher bombs.

The formulae for explosives or bombs were brought by merchants from faraway Zerrikania. These devices are rare. Traditional witcher training does not include any schooling in bomb use, but thanks to their basic alchemy abilities, witchers are capable of making and using explosives.

Note that bombs can only be created if Talent points have been invested in the Bomb Preparation skill, which in turn requires the Oil Preparation skill.

Bombs are made much like other mixtures. Their ingredients are mixed with a base, namely black powder.


  • Bombs can be used by right-clicking on them in the Inventory panel.
  • These objects can also be placed on the witcher's belt (quickslot) and used in the main game environment.
  • When detonated, bombs affect all opponents and neutral characters. They do not impact friendly characters (marked in green).

Books on alchemy[]


External links[]