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I'm very new to d&d and I was immediately drawn to alchemist when our group's now dm informed us that she had purchased a Pathfinder guide book. Using extracts and mutagens in combat sounded enticing but I've hit level four in our campaign now without being able to use any. The dm had played pathfinder before and even had an alchemist in her group so I assumed she would be able to fill me in on how to make these seemingly fundamental tools for an alchemist. She did not and I have been having trouble locating an answer. I was wondering how one goes about creating extracts and mutagens? Are there specific items required depending on what extract is being made? Also, my first discovery was feral mutagen and I had planned on having it be a cornerstone of combat but with this missing block of information, my plans have yet to be fulfilled. Any help would be much appreciated.

EDIT: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/base-classes/alchemist I've been mainly using this as my resource as well as the following: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/advanced/baseClasses/alchemist.html. Perhaps I was misinterpreting what I was being presented but I could not find the answer I was looking for. Both sources list mutagens and extracts as tools available to an alchemist to create but does not go in depth as to how one would make them.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Not a duplicate, but definitely related (also it might solve your problem.) \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Nov 26 '14 at 3:08
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It seems to me that your question is two fold. I may be wrong but you seem to be looking not only for a technical point of view but also from a role-play point of you.

The technical aspect is quite easy to answer:

You will need two items to produce your concoctions(extracts, mutagens and bombs):

Kit, Alchemy Crafting

Price 25 gp; Weight 5 lbs.

An alchemist with an alchemy crafting kit is assumed to have all the material components needed for his extracts, mutagens, and bombs, except for those components that have a specific cost. An alchemy crafting kit provides no bonuses on Craft (alchemy) checks. (This item was previously called an “alchemist's kit”, and was renamed to avoid confusion with the set of adventuring gear called an “alchemist's kit.”)

The second item is your

Formula Book

An alchemist may know any number of formulae. He stores his formulae in a special tome called a formula book. He must refer to this book whenever he prepares an extract but not when he consumes it. An alchemist begins play with two 1st-level formulae of his choice, plus a number of additional forumlae equal to his Intelligence modifier. At each new alchemist level, he gains one new formula of any level that he can create. An alchemist can also add formulae to his book just like a wizard adds spells to his spellbook, using the same costs, pages, and time requirements. An alchemist can study a wizard's spellbook to learn any formula that is equivalent to a spell the spellbook contains. A wizard, however, cannot learn spells from a formula book. An alchemist does not need to decipher arcane writings before copying them.

Extract's preparation How to make an extract. Most of the text around extract can be reduced to the funny (or not) "spell in a bottle".

In many ways, they behave like spells in potion form [...] An extract, once created, remains potent for 1 day before becoming inert, so an alchemist must re-prepare his extracts every day. Mixing an extract takes 1 minute of work—most alchemists prepare many extracts at the start of the day or just before going on an adventure, but it's not uncommon for an alchemist to keep some (or even all) of his daily extract slots open so that he can prepare extracts in the field as needed.

Alchemist extract are like spell really but with a kick they don't take as long to prepare, unless you have more than 60 extracts and at this point well... breaking action economy should not be too hard. The downside is that you need to redo it every day so no storing for long winter nights!

Mutagen's preparation

Now comes the preparation aspect on how to make Mutagens. As far as I can tell, the usual in D&d is to be quite abstract and left to the imagination of the player the details. Most of the time for spell caster you have to go into splat book and descriptions to get a "look and feel" and not only the "use a standard action".

Mutagen (Su)

At 1st level, an alchemist discovers how to create a mutagen that he can imbibe in order to heighten his physical prowess at the cost of his personality. It takes 1 hour to brew a dose of mutagen, and once brewed, it remains potent until used. An alchemist can only maintain one dose of mutagen at a time—if he brews a second dose, any existing mutagen becomes inert. As with an extract or bomb, a mutagen that is not in an alchemist's possession becomes inert until an alchemist picks it up again.

Emphasize mine... A mutagen is brewed, so it is likely to be prepared like a potion or extract but being far more potent it takes a whole hour to make one dose and the alchemist aura can only "power up" one at a time.

From the Alchemy crafting Kit, we know that you have all you need is in it.

So you now have the physical elements and you know that it takes you an hour to brew it.

I hope this will be sufficient for you to feel comfortable using your mutagen.

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As an alchemist, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to create and use these class features as easily as a wizard creates and uses spells! In this answer, I'm summarizing from Paizo's Alchemist rules. The information you seek is already there; hopefully a "big picture" summary will make it easier to parse.

Extracts

An alchemist's extracts are not technically spells, but but they function similarly both in their creation and their usage. Think of them as a fusion between wizard spells and potions.

You can either make all your extracts at the beginning of the day or save spell slots in order to create them later, which takes 1 minute of in-game time per extract. Preparing them usually requires costless, hand-waved components, similar to spells. However, if the spell the extract is duplicating specifically requires a costly ingredient, you must have the costly ingredient when you use the extract. To determine this, refer to the components listing on the spell. Also, you must have your formula book while you create extracts (but not while you cast them, similar to a wizard's spell book). The extracts will function for only one day, so they must be reprepared each day (again, just like a wizard's spells).

Mutagens

Mutagens take an hour to brew. There is no technical limit on how many you can make in a day (beyond time), but only one mutagen works at a time. If you create a second mutagen without expending the first one, the first one will stop working. Thus, you can't have a bunch of functional mutagens stockpiled. Unlike extracts, though, an unconsumed mutagen isn't "perishable"; it will remain functional until you use it or brew a new one.

The exact ingredients of mutagens are not specified in the rules, but there is no cost or special action mentioned, either. The only specified requirement is time. It could be interpreted in various ways, but my own group didn't overthink it.

So, the only real conjecture in this answer: I find it likely that the rules would mention any major or specific requirements for creating the mutagen if they existed, especially because the mutagen is an extremely important class feature. The ability to buff yourself and get neat Discovery-based effects for an hour at a time is one of your compensations for a pure caster's more varied spell choices and higher spell levels. My own GM has thus never attempted to attach any extra requirements to mutagen creation.

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