In Baldur’s Gate 3, Aunt Ethel’s lair hides a veritable cellar of unique potions. Here’s what each does and why some should be avoided.
The early access version of Baldur’s Gate 3 has a magnificent quest involving a merchant, a Green Witch, a damsel in distress, a sinister swamp of eternal stench, a witch’s lair with masked slaves, and a veritable treasure trove of mysterious loot. An important part of this loot is an intriguing selection of unique potions made by Aunt Ethel herself, bottled in handmade clay jars and labeled with names and descriptions that are as attractive as they are sinister.
True adventurers may be eager to sample Aunt Ethel’s concoctions, or at the very least, throw them on their enemies. However, going through ten bottles might be too much for even the thirstiest bard. Here’s a guide on which of Aunt Ethel’s potions are safe (and even beneficial) and which ones will maim your character forever.
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Hatred of a mother – This potion grants the drinker the gift of Bite, a powerful rechargeable attack that deals 2d4 piercing damage and can be used once per turn. The effects last until the next long rest. While it’s a fun extra for players who want to pretend they’re vampires, it works best when paired with Astarion’s more powerful Vampiric Bite.
Heart of stone – This is a powerful little potion that prevents poison damage until the next break. Interestingly, one of the ingredients is malachite, a mineral that can be easily found in Early Access, which is described as an amulet that parents give to children to protect them from nightmares.
Withered dreams – In theory, Wilted Dreams deals 3d6 psychic damage during the player’s next long rest, but in practice the effects have yet to be implemented. However, its name suggests that it could interact with the player’s tadpole character (the dream lover), who is called “Daisy” in the game code and who is trying to penetrate and devour the player’s brain and will.
Lost time – Depending on the player’s class, the effects of Lost Time can be devastating during the next fight: the armor class is reduced by two and the player cannot react for 50 turns.
Wavering will – Whatever the player does, they must avoid drinking “Wavering Will” before confronting Aunt Ethel, who often targets Wisdom. Drinking this potion gives a debuff on Wisdom saving throws until the next rest.
Still born – An incredibly destructive poison that will cause the drinker to bleed for four turns and take 1d6 piercing damage at the end of his turn. Save this for your enemies.
The kiss of madness – Another Auntie Ethel classic, this potion acts as a short-term mask, causing the drinker to become extremely hostile and overly intelligent in AI for the next five turns. Left to their own devices, the player will destroy their own group immediately.
Missing pets – This potion causes one of the slightest debuffs. For three turns, the character will have a disadvantage on skill checks and attack rolls, as he feels illusory spiders crawling up his body.
Broken promises – Broken Promises is a tricky potion: by drinking it, the character will immediately gain two Strength, which will last until his next long rest. However, after that, his Strength will decrease forever by one, which is a big problem in a game where so many fights can be won by throwing your enemies off a cliff.
Lover’s greed – This is a potion that you do not want to drink under any circumstances, as it will permanently decrease your wisdom by one. As with Faltering Will, you especially don’t want to drink this right before facing Ethel or if your character uses Wisdom to launch his attacks.
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