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Once I alter one of my abilities with a Mutagen, is it like equipment where I can go back later and switch it out for a better one? Or is it a permanent change to that ability that I'll keep for the rest of this playthrough?

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This is a good question. Makes me glad I upgraded my first ability with a Critical Effects mutagen rather than a lesser mutagen. – Raven Dreamer May 20 '11 at 2:42
up vote 11 down vote accepted

Mutagens cannot be reversed nor replaced. Once applied they cannot be upgraded either.

So if you have a lesser version of some mutagen, you might want to wait for the greater version and sell everything until then.

Personally, I find it a bad design decision.
It should at least allow you to upgrade from lesser to basic to greater on the same type of mutagen, but that's just me.

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This game is full of bad design decisions, all offset by how amazing the combat is. – StrixVaria May 20 '11 at 2:45
Do note that Greater Mutagens can drop from the beginning of the game, so it's not even like you miss out on much by waiting for them in the first place. – Raven Dreamer May 20 '11 at 3:56

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