A friend from The Tavern Facebook group gifted me a couple books earlier, and I have finally gotten around to reading them cover to cover: The Book of Unusual Potions and the Kickstarter stretch goal A Dozen Spooky and Strange Hats by Philip Reed. I really enjoy rpg system agnostic games, as they can inspire you to push your rpg campaigns beyond the boundaries of the core books and rules. These books are colorful and informative, giving unique twists to these magic staples of fantasy rpgs.
Alongside scrolls, magic potions are one of those ubiquitous magic items that many of us don’t give a second thought. Potions can heal, boost character attributes, and generally serve as a quick fix and a tool to overcome in-game complications and obstacles. Some game systems apply limits to the power of potions, while others disregard “game balance” and approach potions as more of a video game-style instant enhancement. How you personally prefer to treat potions in your campaign is far more important than what the game’s rules may say.
Over the years, I’ve tried to make potions more than just a simple “drink this and gain Y benefit” item. I don’t feel as if I’ve quite succeeded in the past, though, in adding mystery and wonder to the magic potions that I’ve detailed in my work.
That’s where The Book of Unusual Potions comes into frame. This is a dedicated tome in which I try to give potions more twists, turns, and strangeness than in my earlier projects, an attempt at making these potions as entertaining in terms of flavor as they are in-game bonuses.
These two books are chock full of quirky and fascinating ideas ripe for adding unique magic items to your fantasy rpg campaigns. Sadly, I do not think the second book is available anywhere, but you can still acquire The Book of Unusual Potions via DriveThruRPG.