When you combine ingredients at the alchemy table, the right side of the screen shows the potion that will be created from the ingredients.

Most of the combinations yield a "potion with unknown effects". But whenever I try to make such a potion, the creation fails.

Is it even possible to make those potions, and if yes, what determines the success of making one?

3 Answers 3


"potion with unknown effects" just means you don't know whether the combination will result in a valid potion or not, you can discover new potions by trial-and-error.

Each ingredient has four effects, you need to combine ingredients that contain a certain effect at least twice all together, that effect will be added to the effects of the resulting potion. So if you put two ingredients in a potion, only the effects that are present in both ingredients will be effects of the potion. If the ingredients have no effects in common, the result will be the failure to create any potion as you observed.

You can see the effects of an ingredient once you discovered it by creating a potion that used that effect.

  • Sometimes I've mixed two ingredients only one ingredient's effect showed up. Any clue why?
    – Marcin
    Dec 16, 2011 at 14:05
  • @Marcin suppose you have an ingredient ("bandage powder") that restores health and an ingredient ("caffeine") that restores stamina. When you combine them, you get a potion that restores health: that means that caffeine also has the effect of restoring stamina (and its effects list will be updated with this info), but it also means that bandage powder DOES NOT restore stamina. A potion will only have effects that two of its ingredients have in common; if an effect is only on one ingredient, that effect is not in the resulting potion.
    – jsnlxndrlv
    Dec 17, 2011 at 0:12

Adding to the previous answerer, eating an ingredient will discover the first effect, as well as inflicting whatever the effect is (i.e. "Restore Health" will Restore some health).

  • And with the Experimenter perk, the Second, Third, and Fourth (with 3 ranks) effect as well! Nov 19, 2011 at 15:32

This webapp will help you figure out available combinations based on the ingredients you have.

this is an APP i use to determine what potions i can make with ANY combination of ingrediants i have or wanting to see what they do or since alchemy leveling is based on the end result this has helped me out uberly and just am trying to share it. try not Flaming a useful resource link without having used it o0

  • 3
    Is this yours? If so, you need to say so.
    – badp
    Dec 16, 2011 at 13:38
  • I looked an it says 404 not found. -1
    – Jim Jones
    Dec 6, 2015 at 18:21

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