Potions

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Potions-SI.jpg
Potions are drinkable concoctions which produce magical effects in those who imbibe them, producing instantaneous results similar to a number of magical spells. Frequently available at apothecaries, potions appear in Ultima V, VI, VII, VII Part Two, and IX, as well as in the Ultima Underworld series.

Potion Effects by Color[edit]

Potions in Ultima V, VI, VII and VII Part Two[edit]

Potions have the following effects in Ultima V, VI, VII and VII Part Two:[1][2]

Potion Images Effect
U5 U6 U7 U7.2
Red PotionU5.png RedPotionU6.PNG RedPotionU7.PNG RedPotionU7.PNG Cures all poisons.
Orange PotionU5.png OrangePotionU6.PNG OrangePotionU7.PNG OrangePotionU7.PNG Ultima V: the user falls asleep!!!
Ultima VI-VII-VII.2: it awakens an ally who was magically put to sleep.
Yellow PotionU5.png YellowPotionU6.PNG YellowPotionU7.PNG YellowPotionU7.PNG Lesser Heal.
White PotionU5.png WhitePotionU6.PNG WhitePotionU7.PNG WhitePotionU7.PNG Ultima V-VI: casts X-Ray.
Ultima VII-VII.2: casts light.
Green PotionU5.png GreenPotionU6.PNG GreenPotionU7.PNG GreenPotionU7.PNG Ultima V: it poisons the user!!!
Ultima VI-VII-VII.2: it poisons an opponent.
Blue PotionU5.png BluePotionU6.PNG BluePotionU7.PNG BluePotionU7.PNG Ultima V: it awakens an ally who was magically put to sleep.
Ultima VI-VII-VII.2: makes the target fall asleep.
Purple PotionU5.png PurplePotionU6.PNG PurplePotionU7.PNG PurplePotionU7.PNG Ultima V: turns the user into a rat!
Ultima VI-VII-VII.2: creates a temporary protection halo.
Black PotionU5.png BlackPotionU6.PNG BlackPotionU7.PNG BlackPotionU7.PNG Turns the user invisible.
Red-yellow, shimmering -- -- -- RedYellowPotionSI.PNG Partial mana-boost. Only in Ultima VII Part Two.
Black-blue -- -- -- BlackBluePotionSI.PNG Warmth. Only in Ultima VII Part Two.
Blue-white -- -- -- BlueWhiteSI.PNG Curse. Only in Ultima VII Part Two.

Potions in Ultima VII (SNES)[edit]

Potions have the following effects in the SNES Port of Ultima VII:

Potion Image Effect
Red UBGSNESPotion of Healing.png Heals you.
Yellow UBGSNESPotion of Magic Boost.png Gives you a mana Boost.
Blue UBGSNESPotion of Invisibility.png Turns you invisible.
Purple UBGSNESPotion of Invincibility.png Invincibility.
Light Blue UBGSNESPotion of Ghosts.png Invincibility and invisibility.
Green UBGSNESPotion of Awakening.png Awakening.

Potions in Ultima Underworld II[edit]

Potions have the following effects in Ultima Underworld II:

Potion Image Effect
Yellow
YellowPotionUWII.png
Healing of various sorts: Lesser Heal, Heal, Greater Heal or Restoration.
Red
RedPotionUWII.png
Cure Poison or Restoration.
Green
GreenPotionUWII.png
Poison or Hallucination.
Colorless
ColorlessPotionUWII.png
Either increases mana or is Basilisk Oil.
Black
UWIIBlack Potion.png
Turns you invisible.
Purple
PurplePotionUWII.png
Protection of various sorts: Resist Blows, Thick Skin, Iron Flesh, Flameproof, or Missile Protection.
Brown
UWIIBrown Potion.png
Speed or Freeze Time.

Potions in Ultima VIII[edit]

Potions have the following effects in Ultima VIII:[3]

Potion Image Effect
Yellow U8YellowPotion.PNG Its lesser healing will restore 10-12 hit points.
Red U8RedPotion.PNG This will fully restore your health. If healthy, causes damage.
Green U8GreenPotion.PNG You only will lose 10-12 hit points once though its poison.
Blue U8BluePotion.PNG This will make yourself fall asleep, but will not restore your health or mana.
Orange U8OrangePotion.PNG Increases your mana for 10-12 points.
Black U8BlackPotion.PNG Turns you invisible for 60-90 seconds.
Purple U8PurplePotion.PNG Temporary invulnerability for 60-90 seconds.

Potions in Ultima IX[edit]

Potions have the following effects in Ultima IX. In this game, the Avatar may also synthesize potions using appropriate alchemical equipment and a potion's corresponding reagent:[4]

Potion Image Effect Reagent
Red
Cure Poison. U9-GarlicIcon.png
Garlic
Yellow
Heal. U9-GinsengIcon.png
Ginseng
Blue
Water Breathing. U9-BMIcon.png
Blood Moss
Orange
Mana Recovery. U9-SSIcon.png
Spider Silk
Green
Poison. U9-NSIcon.png
Nightshade
Purple
Invulnerability. U9-MDIcon.png
Mandrake Root
White
Infernal Armour. U9-SAIcon.png
Sulfurous Ash
Black
Invisibility. U9-BPIcon.png
Black Pearl

For information where to buy which potion, see Potions in Ultima IX.

Lore[edit]

A potion works its magic on its imbiber instantly and potently. Potions can normally be easily identified by their distinctive colors. Unfortunately, the art of potion manufacture is a new one and appears to be subject to some degree of uncertainty. Sir Adam the Torch, a renowned East Britanny alchemist, estimates that one out of every fifteen potions of a given color is in reality a useless, possibly poisonous, nostrum. Perhaps even more distressingly, he maintains that still another of that same fifteen is likely to generate the effects of an entirely different-colored potion altogether.
An historical point of interest from the last several hundred years. Circa 0207 there was a rather infamous case of a resourceful peeping-tom. One may ask what this has to do with potions, but the publicity generated from this trail about the use and misuse of magical potions of X-ray vision encouraged all honorable mages and alchemists to cease making the amazing potions. And, as these potions fell into disuse, the affectation of calling them white potions also slowly ceased, and a lesser known concoction (which, ironically, is appreciably more white than the original X-ray potion I was able to view (see Alagners Index of Treasures, entry 15, for more information), that of common illumination, became its replacement.
It is the author's expectation that thou art reading this to familiarize thyself with the effects of various potions based on their color. The first part of this work will discuss such aspects, with the remaining pages covering the materials and steps required to make such alchemal creations.

Definitions:
Black potion: Drinking this will render the individual invisible for several minutes.
Blue potion: This mixture will put the imbiber into a deep sleep.
Orange potion: This potion will awaken an individual who was magically put to sleep.
Purple potion: This concoction will provide magical protection for several minutes of hard fighting.
White potion: This potion will provide a small bit of illumination, much like a candle, for a few minutes.
Yellow potion: This powerful mixture will give healing aid to the imbiber's wounds.
WARNING: Green potion: This potion is a dangerous toxin, and will poison the imbiber, possibly killing the individual.
Red potion: This fabulous drink will cure most poisons, including those acquired from the slugs in the swamps and that gained from drinking a GREEN potion.

This next section details how one can best recreate these uncanny concoctions...
Not long after the cities were established, several members of the population set out to collect and transform herbs and plants into elixirs of magic. Some of these potions make one invisible, some induce sleep and some do nothing but fizzle. Regardless, potions are excellent tools for those without the ability to enchant, providing one can afford them.
From my experiments I have found that potions act in the following manner:

Yellow: Heals, but only in small measures.
Red: Also heals, but beware! Its strength will do damage to those not in need of its power.
Orange: restores Mana in times of need.
Green: Its taste is quite revolting!
Blue: Provides restful slumber.
Purple: Provides protection in combat. Very useful against undead.
Black: Causes drinker to be invisible.
- from Potions, (Ultima VIII)
Magic can be turned to liquid form, as can wool dye and grooming powders. Several greedy mages have been sanctioned for their dyed mixtures. Though all of the chicanery cannot be averted, standards have improved. You may find potions of reputable quality on your travel or in the apothciaries throughout Britannia. Drink with caution and in moderation.

In your travels throughout Britannia, you may discover alchemy sets with which you can render potions. Combine the requisite reagents with a flask of water, and add a gem of appropriate nature. The name and measurement of the needed reagents and gem can only be acquired with experience, inquiry, and travel.
- from Spellbook, (Ultima IX)

Trivia[edit]

  • Despite the note of uncertainty in Paths of Destiny, potions do not tend to deviate from the expected abilities by color in Ultima V. Perhaps this says more about the capabilities of Sir Adam, who seems to cause much destruction with his experimentation, than about other potion manufacturers at the time.
  • According to The Apothecary's Desk Reference, white potions previously allowed for X-Ray vision, but were outlawed after an infamous peeping-tom case.[5]

References[edit]

  1. Dr. CatUltima VI Clue Book: The Book of Prophecy (Ultima VI). Origin Systems, Inc.: 1990. Page 53.
  2. Hobbs, Sherri G.. Ultima VII Part Two Clue Book (Ultima VII Part Two). Origin Systems, Inc.: 1993. Pages 53-60.
  3. Mead, Melissa. Pentology: Ultima VIII Clue Book (Ultima VIII). Origin Systems: 1994. Page 26.
  4. McCubbin, Chris et al. "Potions". Ultima IX Strategy Guide (Ultima IX). Prima Publishing: 1999. Page 75.
  5. Fetoau. The Apothecary's Desk Reference (Ultima VII - in-game).