Asset. Arcane


Cost: 1.
Test Icons:

Uses (3 charges).

Exhaust Alchemical Transmutation, spend 1 charge: Test (1). For each point you succeed by, gain 1 resource (to a maximum of 3). If a , , , , or symbol is revealed during this test, take 1 damage.

Andreas Zafiratos
The Path to Carcosa #32.
Alchemical Transmutation

This card is a trap, don't play it.

In best case you spent 6 actions to gain 8 ressources, if all tests succeed with no negative side effect. My cost calculation inludes: draw card, play it, pay 1 ressource, spend 3 actions to trigger it.

if you spend 6 actionst to gather ressources instead, you're only two behind but with no side effect and 100% chance of success.

Futher problems:

  • I occupies an arcane slot. Most mystics need one for an attack spell and the other for Rite of Seeking.
  • If you fail, the card is less effective than "gather ressource action".
  • Has on third chance to deal one damage to user. Mystics don't have high HP, this can kill you.
  • Some scenarios add doom on specific symbols, so you want to avoid any kind of test in such a scenario, turning this into a dead card.
  • It occupies 2 slots in your deck, which can be used for much better mystic cards. Forbidden Knowledge or David Renfield is a good replacement, if you need ressources.
Django · 3807
I disagree with your analysis. It's 4 actions to get 8 resources. All cards must be drawn, it doesn't make sense to factor that in. The resource is already factored into the outcome. — Nils · 1
@Nils 4 actions to fully use it (1 to play, 3 to activate fully) to gain 8 (9 total minus the 1 to play) but there's more to it than just that. It does cost you a card draw (and a card in your deck) as you don't need to have a card to just gain a resource. The 1 resource cost to play is more detrimental than just gaining 8 instead of 9, as you need to have that resource available before you gain anything. I think it's a little much to say it's 6 actions but it's not just 4 either. There are some still some huge downsides to consider. — Etainz · 1

This one seems similar to rogue's Burglary, yet more dangerous and limited. Majority of what is written for Burglary will apply here as well.


  • rather easy test to solve (and independent from location)
  • perhaps being it a spell?


  • charge based
  • slow card (for its full use you have to pay 4 actions and 1 resource)
  • net gain per use might be a bit unpredictable (and you should never add any card to its test)
  • somehow risky, can hurt you (1 or 2 wounds are quite likely)

In my opinion this cards is not worth adding for most scenarios simply because the actions are more precious than the resources in most cases (at least scenarios are built in that way right now). Also, the mystics already can generate resources via Forbidden Knowledge and it is simply more usable and effective than Alchemical Transmutation.

XehutL · 46
This card generates many more resources than Forbidden Knowledge does, though. And the drawback of damage is guaranteed for Forbidden Knowledge. — Nils · 1
@Nils, not that much more total. With Forbidden knowledge you get 4 resources, but it takes 3 actions less, which nets roughly 7 resources versus 8 from this abomination of a card. FK does not provide any damage but damage, which is either negligible if you have Sylvester (••) or can be used to your own advantage with Agnes (especially during upkeep or mythos phases). The only times AT might be somewhat more useful is if you really need 2 resources this turn (you won’t be able to use 5, because that takes 3 actions to generate them), but that situation is extremely unlikely to consider adding this card to your deck. FK does not occupy spell slot, does not require actions to activate and the resolution of mythos tokens might be much worse than 1 damage/horror, or it just might outright fail. — trbvm · 1

This card seems worthwhile with Marie Lambeau, even without any additional support. This and Scrying are the only spells with charges that can be used any time (to take advantage of her activated power). If you would otherwise not be using the bonus actions, the maximum net effect of Alchemical Transmutation would be 1 resource and 1 card spent for 9 resources gained, which is quite good.

jmmeye3 · 559
...assuming best results on the test which is not very likely on standard with will 4. average token is -2 so 1 Ressource per unmodified test is much more likely. So as I said in my review of this card I think it’s pretty bad. — Django · 3807

It was sort of a trap..

I have to say it does have its user from now.

A guy who can transmute a trap into a trick, our new magic friend - Dexter Drake.

It's not only thematic, he really is built to use and even upgrade this card))

Blood Pact + Alchemical Transmutation Even on Expert nets you 4 resources, that he desperately needs.

Again. Almost every card in this game builds specifically towards a certain gator.

It's certainly fun to puzzle that out. Coz when you play - it becomes magical. Everything just fits.

ambiryan13 · 131
I think this card is a lot better for Dex than anyone else, especially it's upgrade. Mostly because it's an easy low difficulty will test he can use to compound Rogue effects onto (Lucky Cig Case, Momentum, Quick Thinking, Watch This, etc) — StyxTBeuford · 12593

I don't see why someone would take a copy of this card instead of Emergency Cache.

Emergency Cache vs Alchemical Transmutation:

  • Cost of 0 ressources vs 1 ressource
  • Gives you 3 ressources for sure vs 0 to 3
  • No side effects vs possible damage
  • No slot vs 1 spell slot

Ok, you can use Alchemical Transmutation 3 times (or 4 times with Akachi Onyele), but in most scenarios, you won't have that much spare time.

Ezhaeu · 40
It makes a very good Double or Nothing target to stack other effects on (such as Quick Thinking or Watch This!) for Sefina since it only has a base difficulty of 1. — Death by Chocolate · 979
Also you should have mentioned 1 action (Emergency Cache) against minimum of 2 actions (Alchemical Transmutation) for a similar effect. Though you can (and you should) repeat the Transmutation if you have any spare time for it -> or not even put that card in your deck at all. — XehutL · 46
BTW, should it be to maximum of 4 I would be inclined to add it to my deck, or perhaps with not losing the charge when damage occurs. But not in its current mutation - both Emergency Cache and Forbidden Knowledge are currently waay better option. — XehutL · 46
You're not missing anything. This card is really bad. — CaiusDrewart · 2561
One thing would make this card indispensible, a free trigger after paying it. I use it alot in Akachi decks as you can be fairly sure of bumping her Willpower up to 8, giving a good chance of maximum returns. But using a damned action to do it puts my teeth on edge. — bern1106 · 2
@bern1106 that free trigger would make it way more powerful, true, but if they're whenever they make an 'indispensable' card, they've made a mistake from a design perspective. — Death by Chocolate · 979
Maybe FFG adds an upgrade like scrying 3 that is free to trigger but deals damage and horror. — Django · 3807
Marie Lambeau + 2 Book of Shadows + 2 Scrying + Alyssa + Forbidden Knowledge + this = Deck Controlling, Clue Gathering, Resource Whore. — crymoricus · 229
Marie + This + Book of Shadows = 5 resources, 3xp, hand slot instead of the Arcane slot (think about it), unlimited charges, first three charges are free (pays for itself in 2 turns, zero actions) (must have at least one doom on a card she controls). I'm trying to build around this, it's not easy lol. But it's fun to try. — crymoricus · 229
Man, I hate it when people disregard cards because it "worse than Emergency Cache". As if two Emergency Caches will always be enough resource cards for every single deck in the game. I'm not defending Alchemical Transmutation in particular, but if that's the only case you're presenting, it's hardly a review. — TheDoc37 · 455
But EC is still a good baseline for comparison. Nowadays a mystic deck would in fact rather consider EC as potential third or forth copy of UtS than the other way round. There are many other valid options to slot instead of EC in all classes. AT isn't one of them. (At least for most investigators. I can see, that a Rogue-Mystic like Dex or Sef might find value it it due to synergy with "succeed by x" builds, but I have not played that combo myself.) — Susumu · 166