Druidic herbalism clarification


Rules Questions


Had a mass argument discussion with several people in a community I'm in about this, an we couldn't come to an agreement. I'd like some feedback here if possible, to bring back with me if this pops up again. Skip to the bottom for points that require clarification.

Point of conflict:

Spoiler:

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/core-classes/druid

Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond Variant (Optional)

Source PPC:HH

Druidic herbalism is a nature bond option that can be taken by any druid at 1st level except those with archetypes or alternate class features that alter or replace nature bond or mandate a specific nature bond choice.

Instead of granting access to a domain or an animal companion, a druid’s bond with nature can take a third form: access to druidic herbalism.

A druid who chooses to learn druidic herbalism can use combinations of nuts, berries, dried herbs, and other natural ingredients along with appropriate containers to create herbal concoctions or magic consumables that function like potions. This acts like the Brew Potion feat, but only for spells on the druid spell list. Herbal concoctions are typically thick and sludgy, and their creation time, caster level, spell duplication capabilities, and all other variables and properties are identical to those of potions created using Brew Potion. Herbal concoctions created with herbs that cause special effects when ingested retain those effects as well as the appropriate spell effect.

A druid can create a number of free herbal concoctions per day equal to her Wisdom modifier. Additional concoctions cost the same as creating an equivalent potion using Brew Potion. Druids can sell their herbal concoctions just as if they were potions (though NPCs unfamiliar with druidic herbalism may need some convincing before purchasing these wares).

At 4th level, a druid’s increasing skill with herbalism means that she can disguise the effects of her herbal concoctions. When a creature attempts a Perception or Spellcraft check to identify one of the druid’s concoctions, the concoction appears to be a different herbal concoction of the druid’s choice unless the creature exceeds the identification DC by 5 or more. The druid must designate this false result when creating the concoction. If a creature exceeds the identification DC by 5 or more, it correctly identifies the concoction, though not that the druid tried to fool it.

Additionally, at 4th level, when the druid creates additional concoctions, she need pay only half the normal cost to create them. It takes her only half the normal time to create her concoctions, and she can create concoctions of spells from any spell list, as long as she can cast the spell.

At 7th level, when the druid creates concoctions with potential false identification results, a creature attempting to identify the concoction must exceed the identification DC by 10 or more to determine the concoction’s true identity.

Additionally, at 7th level, a druid can create any herbal concoction in 1 minute. She can also create a special concoction of any spell higher than 3rd level that she can cast, but to do so, she must expend a spell slot of the same level. These special concoctions do not cost her anything to create and function like extracts created by an alchemist with the infusion discovery.

The following is a summary of my opinions on the matter. A much shorter summary of my opposition will follow.

Starting with the third paragraph, these points:

Spoiler:
A druid who chooses to learn druidic herbalism can use combinations of nuts, berries, dried herbs, and other natural ingredients along with appropriate containers to create herbal concoctions or magic consumables that function like potions. This acts like the Brew Potion feat, but only for spells on the druid spell list. Herbal concoctions are typically thick and sludgy, and their creation time, caster level, spell duplication capabilities, and all other variables and properties are identical to those of potions created using Brew Potion. Herbal concoctions created with herbs that cause special effects when ingested retain those effects as well as the appropriate spell effect.

mean to me, that;

Spoiler:

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items#TOC-Magic-Item-Creation

To create magic items, spellcasters use special feats which allow them to invest time and money in an item’s creation. At the end of this process, the spellcaster must make a single skill check (usually Spellcraft, but sometimes another skill) to finish the item. If an item type has multiple possible skills, you choose which skill to make the check with. The DC to create a magic item is 5 + the caster level for the item. Failing this check means that the item does not function and the materials and time are wasted. Failing this check by 5 or more results in a cursed item.

Note that all items have prerequisites in their descriptions. These prerequisites must be met for the item to be created. Most of the time, they take the form of spells that must be known by the item’s creator (although access through another magic item or spellcaster is allowed). The DC to create a magic item increases by 5 for each prerequisite the caster does not meet. The only exception to this is the requisite item creation feat, which is mandatory. In addition, you cannot create potions, spell-trigger, or spell-completion magic items without meeting its prerequisites.

While item creation costs are handled in detail below, note that normally the two primary factors are the caster level of the creator and the level of the spell or spells put into the item. A creator can create an item at a lower caster level than her own, but never lower than the minimum level needed to cast the needed spell. Using metamagic feats, a caster can place spells in items at a higher level than normal.

...

In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

The creator also needs a fairly quiet, comfortable, and well-lit place in which to work. Any place suitable for preparing spells is suitable for making items. Creating an item requires 8 hours of work per 1,000 gp in the item’s base price (or fraction thereof), with a minimum of at least 8 hours. Potions and scrolls are an exception to this rule; they can take as little as 2 hours to create (if their base price is 250 gp or less). Scrolls and potions whose base price is more than 250 gp, but less than 1,000 gp, take 8 hours to create, just like any other magic item. The character must spend the gold at the beginning of the construction process. Regardless of the time needed for construction, a caster can create no more than one magic item per day. This process can be accelerated to 4 hours of work per 1,000 gp in the item’s base price (or fraction thereof) by increasing the DC to create the item by 5.

The caster can work for up to 8 hours each day. He cannot rush the process by working longer each day, but the days need not be consecutive, and the caster can use the rest of his time as he sees fit. If the caster is out adventuring, he can devote 4 hours each day to item creation, although he nets only 2 hours’ worth of work. This time is not spent in one continuous period, but rather during lunch, morning preparation, and during watches at night. If time is dedicated to creation, it must be spent in uninterrupted 4-hour blocks. This work is generally done in a controlled environment, where distractions are at a minimum, such as a laboratory or shrine. Work that is performed in a distracting or dangerous environment nets only half the amount of progress (just as with the adventuring caster).

applies to this class feature.

Note: potion and herbal concoctions of lvl 1-3 shall be used interchangeably in the magical item creation paragraph.

Paragraph four:

Spoiler:

A druid can create a number of free herbal concoctions per day equal to her Wisdom modifier. Additional concoctions cost the same as creating an equivalent potion using Brew Potion. Druids can sell their herbal concoctions just as if they were potions (though NPCs unfamiliar with druidic herbalism may need some convincing before purchasing these wares).

modifies the magical item creation rules in that only:

Spoiler:

Regardless of the time needed for construction, a caster can create no more than one magic item per day.

is altered to:

Spoiler:

A druid with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can create a number of free herbal concoctions per day equal to her Wisdom modifier, plus any additional concoctions she wants to craft.

Simultaneously, paragraph six:

Spoiler:

Additionally, at 4th level, when the druid creates additional concoctions, she need pay only half the normal cost to create them. It takes her only half the normal time to create her concoctions, and she can create concoctions of spells from any spell list, as long as she can cast the spell.

has the first sentence modify the crafting cost of a potion from .5(spell level*CL*50) to 0.5(0.5(spell level*CL*50)), while the second sentence modifies the magical item creation rules from:

Spoiler:

Potions and scrolls are an exception to this rule; they can take as little as 2 hours to create (if their base price is 250 gp or less). Scrolls and potions whose base price is more than 250 gp, but less than 1,000 gp, take 8 hours to create, just like any other magic item.

to

Spoiler:

Potions and scrolls are an exception to this rule; a druid with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can take as little as 1 hour to create (if their base price is 250 gp or less). Scrolls and potions whose base price is more than 250 gp, but less than 1,000 gp, take 4 hours to create, just like any other magic item.

additionally, the last paragraph:

Spoiler:

Additionally, at 7th level, a druid can create any herbal concoction in 1 minute. She can also create a special concoction of any spell higher than 3rd level that she can cast, but to do so, she must expend a spell slot of the same level. These special concoctions do not cost her anything to create and function like extracts created by an alchemist with the infusion discovery.

further alters the section that paragraph 4, sentence 2 alters to:

Spoiler:

Potions and scrolls are an exception to this rule; a druid level 4 with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can take as little as 1 hour to create (if their base price is 250 gp or less). Scrolls and potions whose base price is more than 250 gp, but less than 1,000 gp, take 4 hours to create, just like any other magic item. A druid level 7 with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can create an herbal concoction in 1 minute.

The final alteration to the magical item crafting rules for the purposes of this class feature looks like:

Spoiler:

To create magic items, spellcasters use special feats which allow them to invest time and money in an item’s creation. At the end of this process, the spellcaster must make a single skill check (usually Spellcraft, but sometimes another skill) to finish the item. If an item type has multiple possible skills, you choose which skill to make the check with. The DC to create a magic item is 5 + the caster level for the item. Failing this check means that the item does not function and the materials and time are wasted. Failing this check by 5 or more results in a cursed item.

Note that all items have prerequisites in their descriptions. These prerequisites must be met for the item to be created. Most of the time, they take the form of spells that must be known by the item’s creator (although access through another magic item or spellcaster is allowed). The DC to create a magic item increases by 5 for each prerequisite the caster does not meet. The only exception to this is the requisite item creation feat, which is mandatory. In addition, you cannot create potions, spell-trigger, or spell-completion magic items without meeting its prerequisites.

While item creation costs are handled in detail below, note that normally the two primary factors are the caster level of the creator and the level of the spell or spells put into the item. A creator can create an item at a lower caster level than her own, but never lower than the minimum level needed to cast the needed spell. Using metamagic feats, a caster can place spells in items at a higher level than normal.

...

In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

The creator also needs a fairly quiet, comfortable, and well-lit place in which to work. Any place suitable for preparing spells is suitable for making items. Creating an item requires 8 hours of work per 1,000 gp in the item’s base price (or fraction thereof), with a minimum of at least 8 hours. Potions and scrolls are an exception to this rule; a druid level 4 with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can take as little as 1 hour to create (if their base price is 250 gp or less). Scrolls and potions whose base price is more than 250 gp, but less than 1,000 gp, take 4 hours to create, just like any other magic item. A druid level 7 with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can create an herbal concoction in 1 minute. The character must spend the gold at the beginning of the construction process. A druid with Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond class feature can create a number of free herbal concoctions per day equal to her Wisdom modifier, plus any additional concoctions she wants to craft. This process can be accelerated to 4 hours of work per 1,000 gp in the item’s base price (or fraction thereof) by increasing the DC to create the item by 5.

The caster can work for up to 8 hours each day. He cannot rush the process by working longer each day, but the days need not be consecutive, and the caster can use the rest of his time as he sees fit. If the caster is out adventuring, he can devote 4 hours each day to item creation, although he nets only 2 hours’ worth of work. This time is not spent in one continuous period, but rather during lunch, morning preparation, and during watches at night. If time is dedicated to creation, it must be spent in uninterrupted 4-hour blocks. This work is generally done in a controlled environment, where distractions are at a minimum, such as a laboratory or shrine. Work that is performed in a distracting or dangerous environment nets only half the amount of progress (just as with the adventuring caster).

A special concoction will also follow the rules of an alchemist infused extract

Spoiler:

https://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/base-classes/alchemist/discoveries/paizo-- -alchemist-discoveries/infusion/

Benefit: When the alchemist creates an extract, he can infuse it with an extra bit of his own magical power. The extract created now persists even after the alchemist sets it down. As long as the extract exists, it continues to occupy one of the alchemist’s daily extract slots. An infused extract can be imbibed by a non-alchemist to gain its effects.

as well as the rules for crafting a magical item that is not a potion, market price being determined by the potion price formula.

Finally, how material components are handled, costly or otherwise:

Spoiler:

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items#TOC-Creating-Potions

Material components are consumed when he begins working, but a focus is not. (a focus used in brewing a potion can be reused.) The act of brewing triggers the prepared spell, making it unavailable for casting until the character has rested and regained spells. (That is, that spell slot is expended from the caster’s currently prepared spells, just as if it had been cast.)

The following assumes the above is true.

1) A free or additional herbal concoction consumes time and spells as per brew potion.
2) A level 1-3 requires a minimum of 2 hours to craft each without rushing, with each day being a maximum of 8 hours of work
3) Therefore, a level 1-3 druid with 20+ wis has 5+ free concoctions available, but may only create 4 a day without rushing.
4) A skill check must be performed for any herbal concoction, being either spellcraft or craft (alchemy)
5) Material component costs are added to the market price and crafting cost of free and additional herbal concoctions
6) Because material components are consumed when starting, you must have the components before you start even a free concoction (clarification required)
7) For special concoctions, as per an extract with infusion, material components are consumed upon consuming the extract, similar to a wizard casting a spell. No free wish for you.
8) A special concoction, as per an extract with infusion, lasts 24 hours and only affects the consumer.
9) A special concoction can also be free concoction.

Opposition view:

This single sentence

Spoiler:

A druid can create a number of free herbal concoctions per day equal to her Wisdom modifier.

Invalidates all above points for free concoctions, because:
1) You must be able to get as many free concoctions as their wisdom modifier, because "A druid can create"
2) This invalidates the time requirements entirely for free concoctions
3) A free concoction has no cost, because it is "free"
4) Cost includes time, material components, base potion price
5) This invalidates paragraph 3 of the druid class feature, and the remainder of the magic item creation rules for free concoctions
6) Got to other potential opposition arguments, such as skill checks...

Clarification required:
1) Which interpretation, or parts thereof are correct?
2) Because material components are consumed when starting, do you need to have the components before you start even a free concoction? In other words, do you have to pay costly material component costs for free concoctions? I noticed that you can also do....

Spoiler:
Herbal concoctions created with herbs that cause special effects when ingested retain those effects as well as the appropriate spell effect.
, do those count as costly material components as well?

Thank you for following this far. I await your answers. Please correct any rules that I have misquoted, or misinterpreted.
This should be viewed entirely RAW, with no (or minimal) RAI interpretations.


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I was interested in the topic but the wall of spoilers has turned me off. I'll check back later to see if someone simplifies this into a readable/understandable format or asks for a specific and identifiable question.

If you search, you'll find other threads in which this ability has been debated already. For instance, here is one that I was posting in: Druid Herbalism


TL;DR

Brew potion rules apply to herbal concoctions, to include time, cost, costly component cost.
Do they apply to free concoctions in that,
free concoctions cost no gold to make, other than costly material components, spells, and take time
or
free concoctions have no cost for money, spells or time because 'a druid can create a number of free concoctions equal to wis mod' per day

You can put special herbs into the concoction for special effects, do you have to pay for them if free concoction

Additional details in post 1

I did attempt a search, but it kept crashing and only manually searched a few pages. The post you linked answers this one. Kind of. Thank you.

That said, more views is good too.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

First off, it isn't uncommon for things from the Player Companion splatbook line to not be fully baked, and this is a pretty good example of that.

My guess is that what they wanted was the intrinsic potion cost (50 * SL * CL) to be free, and the material components to still be extra. That being said, what they wrote and what they wanted may not be the same thing.

As written, the ability allows you to create two distinct types of objects, an Herbal Concoction and a Special Concoction. Despite the similarity of the name, there is no reason to think that rules that apply to one apply to the other.

Herbal Concoctions function exactly like potions (with all the abilities an limitations that apply) so creation time, spell craft checks etc etc. all apply. The item is permanent, can be sold, etc. Later abilities change some of these rules (making potions becomes quicker for example) but the item is still functionally equivalent to a potion. The druid can ignore the cost (including material component costs) for a number of these Herbal Concoctions each day.

Special Concoctions on the other hand function exactly like an alchemist extract (with infusion) so they require a spell slot, and use up that spell slot as long as they exist. Also, while the special concoction itself is free, like an alchemist extract 'If a spell normally has a costly material component, that component is expended during the consumption of that particular extract'. So you have to provide costly material components when you consume an extract (or special concoction), unlike potions which have them as part of the creation costs. Special concoctions can't benefit from the free herbal concoction ability for several reasons, one is that they are two different things, but also special concoctions are always free, and since they, like extracts, don't have material components intrinsic to them it wouldn't do you any good, you still have to provide the material component when you consume the special concoction.


In that case, is there a limit on how many special concoctions that can be made? This is why I lumped it in with herbals...
Or is it limited by number of spell slots over lvl 3?


I'd say:
costly material components are part of free. I could see a DM making someone pay for the costly materials but as written, free is free.

Spells: spells are expended as normal. This means that at low levels, if you a high enough wisdom, you might have to make cantrip potions to get all your free ones.

Free potion take time but it's the minimum 2 hrs before reductions [as 0gp is less than 250gp] and don't count towards the 1/day magic item limit [or you couldn't make wis/day].

Special herbs aren't part of the base potion, so they are priced normally [not free].

Special Concoctions: Make as many as you want as you trade your spell slot for an infusions.

Any other questions?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
jcheung wrote:

In that case, is there a limit on how many special concoctions that can be made? This is why I lumped it in with herbals...

Or is it limited by number of spell slots over lvl 3?

Special concoctions can only be made using spells (and therefore slots) of higher than third level. The is no limitation on how many (well, technically you could read 'create a special concoction' as a 1 time ever limitation, but this would obviously be a misreading), but a slot must be expended for each one.


graystone wrote:

I'd say:

costly material components are part of free. I could see a DM making someone pay for the costly materials but as written, free is free.

...

Free potion take time but it's the minimum 2 hrs before reductions [as 0gp is less than 250gp] and don't count towards the 1/day magic item limit [or you couldn't make wis/day].

Special herbs aren't part of the base potion, so they are priced normally [not free].

So you're saying that the 'free' portion occurs after this (below)? Leaves a sour taste in my mouth, because material components are material components whether they are special herbs, alchemical power components or base material components required for the spell... so they should all be treated the same. I can accept it as you state though...

Spoiler:
In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

My biggest problem with this, is the 0 gp cost you're using for the base price for crafting. The class feature should only be adding the bolded sentence to the following:

Spoiler:

Magic supplies for items are always half of the base price in gp. For many items, the market price equals the base price. Armor, shields, weapons, and items with value independent of their magically enhanced properties add their item cost to the market price. The item cost does not influence the base price (which determines the cost of magic supplies), but it does increase the final market price. A Druid with the Druidic Herbalism Nature Bond does not pay the magic supplies for free concoctions.

That also supports paying for costly material components/alchemical power components/special herbs, as well as following:
Spoiler:

Herbal concoctions are typically thick and sludgy, and their creation time, caster level, spell duplication capabilities, and all other variables and properties are identical to those of potions created using Brew Potion.

Which, for free concoctions in my eyes reads as: Take a base potion. Do not pay the base cost. Craft as normal, modifying for lvl 4 or 7 as required.

i know you hate spoiler walls, but i can't help myself :D


jcheung:

costly material components: These IMO fall under free.
alchemical power components: I'm unsure that they can be used in a potion. The spell isn't actually cast when making a potion and can you "additional material component" when the spells isn't cast? I don't think so, so that's why I'd say no.
special herbs: these aren't part of the potion at all, hence them not being free. All adding them in means that it and the potion take effect at the same time. It's a potion + herb and not a potion herb. All it does is help with action economy, not price.


Quote:
An alchemical power component is an alchemical item used as a material component or focus for a spell in order to alter or augment the spell’s normal effects. What follows is a sample of these effects using this item as a component; your GM may allow other combinations.

This makes it a material component. Not additional component, just 'a material component for a spell'.

The herb Nethys's dagger specifically states 'additional material component when casting spells' (also stating additive to potions), but it is still a material component for 'costly material component' when added to a normal potion (not concoction) when not casting a spell.

Quote:
Material components are consumed when he begins working, but a focus is not. (a focus used in brewing a potion can be reused.) The act of brewing triggers the prepared spell, making it unavailable for casting until the character has rested and regained spells. (That is, that spell slot is expended from the caster’s currently prepared spells, just as if it had been cast.)

Material components are consumed at the start of a potion's craft


alchemical power component where updated in the Alchemy Manual: they are "additional material component" and called Alchemical Reagents.

The point you missed is even if you were to add one to a potion, does it work? You don't cast the spell as normal.

Nethys's dagger: note it has effects FOR POTIONS and spells.
It has one effect for potions: "causing all variable numeric effects of the potion to be determined as if the potion’s caster level were 1 higher"
It has a different effect for casting: "+1 alchemical bonus on caster level checks to overcome spell resistance".

Nethys's dagger is one of the reasons I don't think Alchemical Reagents work in potions. If the casting effect worked with potions, why have a different entry for potions?

As to Nethys's dagger 'for free', I'd still say no. It's an "additive" to the free potion and not part of the normal potion.


ah, but a 'base potion' as you call it, has no material component... costly or otherwise.

Quote:
If the potion has a material component cost, it is added to the base price and cost to create.
Quote:

The creator must have prepared the spell to be placed in the potion (or must know the spell, in the case of a sorcerer or bard) and must provide any material component or focus the spell requires.

Material components are consumed when he begins working, but a focus is not. (a focus used in brewing a potion can be reused.) The act of brewing triggers the prepared spell, making it unavailable for casting until the character has rested and regained spells. (That is, that spell slot is expended from the caster’s currently prepared spells, just as if it had been cast.)

the material components are added to a base potion in order to allow it to function as intended.

additionally, when brewing a potion, you are casting

Quote:
The act of brewing triggers the prepared spell, making it unavailable for casting until the character has rested and regained spells. (That is, that spell slot is expended from the caster’s currently prepared spells, just as if it had been cast.)


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Great idea, s+#!e system. Herbalism needs a redo.

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