Agony, also known as Liquid Pain, is exactly what it claims to be: the distillation of pain and suffering by magical means into a drug. The resulting substance is a thick, reddish liquid resembling blood only more viscous.
It is highly prized among certain extra-planar beings, who can use it to feel pleasures greater than they are otherwise able. Side effects of Agony include an initial stunning effect that incapacitates the user for a brief period and leaves them groggy for a time after that. Curiously, it also makes them more attractive to anyone around them for a period lasting anywhere from one to eight hours.
Agony would likely be a drug of great addiction among demons, devils and their ilk, were it not for the fact that an overdose causes unconsciousness, which means that the effects are wasted instead of the users.
Related Drugs: Baccaran, Devilweed, Luhix, Mordayn Vapor, Mushroom Powder, Redflower Leaves, Sannish, Terran Brandy and Vodare.
An alchemical preparation usually in the form of a dust, Akkadris is a euphoric and stimulant.
It is highly addictive, causing withdrawal symptoms including profuse sweating and violent mood swings in those who attempt to quit it.
It is also highly illegal, and because it is more commonly a drug of the well-to-do than of those closer to street level, many Akkadris users labour under the dual burdens of addiction… and blackmail.
Babbling Beverage is a potion that causes the imbiber to babble nonsense.
As such it is commonly used to play pranks or to undermine authority figures.
Related Drugs: Doxycide, Dr. Ubbly’s Oblivious Unction, Garrotting Gas & Murtlap Essence.
Bentlam, also known as benny, ben weed and happy sleep, is am alien drug similar in chemical composition to earthly marijuana. It is, however, prepared to a vastly higher degree of purity than any marijuana or hashish or Earth ever was.
In effect, it is a mild euphoric that induces a state of pleasant drowsiness in its users. Other symptoms include impaired physical coordination, although cognition is unaffected. It is illegal in most jurisdictions.
Related Drugs: Fayalin, Hadive, Ladolian, Nitrolabe, Thionite, Vee-Two Gas and VXN Gas.
Black Forest High is a breed of marijuana grown a woman described (by those who do not know her well, which is nearly everyone) as “a little old lady from Pasadena”. In actuality, the woman in question is more or less ageless. Her name is Agnes, and just by coincidence, she’s a witch. A murderous cannibalistic Nazi witch.
The Black Forest High was grown in the basement of her house, which was extensive as a result of having been originally constructed as a funeral home with a large attached bomb shelter, and fertilised with the remains of the young humans killed by the witch. At the present time, all known samples of Black Forest High have been destroyed, but Agnes is still out there, somewhere. Only time will tell when she returns and whether she’ll bring her drug with her.
One of the CIA’s “New Ghetto Drugs for ’98” collection, Blue Glass is a cheap upper that comes in the form of a blue powder smoked like crack.
The results of taking Blue Glass include almost the complete list of classic euphoric effects: feelings of extreme optimism and happiness; greatly enhanced reflexes; sensory and sexual pleasure; and improved visual acuity.
Sadly the effects are almost immediately followed by the onset semi-permanent suicidal catatonia, meaning that although users will become addicted very quickly, they will also be unlikely to rouse themselves to get a second hit of Blue Glass, despite its low, low price of only a single American dollar per hit.
Related drugs: Brainscratch, Spike and Zom-B.
California Mello is one of many designer drugs developed by Orange County pharmacologist Sandy Chapman, and like most of his output, it is a colourless liquid that is taken by dropping directly into the eye.
As the name suggests, it provokes a feeling of mellowness in the user, akin to being mildly intoxicated. It is most often used in combination with other drugs.
Related Drugs: Apprehension of Beauty, Buzz, Funnybone, Get Wired, Pattern Perception, Rhinoceros & Verbality
Caskan Wolf Snake Venom is a deadly poison to various species on the planet Caska. It is also, curiously, a strong hallucinigen to humans are some other sentients.
As an illegal substance under imperial rule, Caskan Wolf Snake Venom is sometimes smuggled into the Empire’s jurisdiction.
A highly expensive and addictive drug, Cernadine provides a hit that temporarily creates sensations of emotional lassitude and heightened confidence. It is taken as a mild stimulant and euphoric. Unfortunately, the symptoms of coming down include heightened anxiety and lowered self-esteem, which tends to quickly get the user on a treadmill of taking the drug.
While it is legal (at least on the planet Aurore), Cernadine is a dangerous substance to all but the strongest willed. Even with the assistance of a God, overcoming addiction to it is far from easy.
Chuckles is the street name of a mixture of Joker Venom and regular ecstasy, created by the crime boos Maxie Zeus. It’s name derives from the ‘giggly’ high it produces.
It quickly became popular in the inner city nightclubs of Gotham City, and like most drugs that this is true of, it spread to the suburbs. As the use of Chuckles spread, its side effects became widespread – including lockjaw, paranoia and psychosis. It becomes considered the worst drug epidemic since crack in the late ’80s. The Joker was infuriated by someone turning his trademark Joker Venom into a recreational drug “rocked at a kegger.”
Chum is a black-and-red liquid that glistens wholesomely. Made from fish eggs and guts using old Drow techniques, it has a similar effect to strong alcohol. It smells even worse than you imagine, and provides a dirty, messy high that’s all-too-common on the streets of Derelictus that border on the Heart.
Chum is rarely sold, most users making batches for personal use or for gatherings of friends.
Related Drugs: Ambrosia, Blues,Carotid, Corpsefruit, Dagger, Devilsroot, The Dose, Glimmer, Godsmoke, Ivory, Maiden’s Prayer, Malak, Mushrooms & Sulphur
The Confusing Concoction, also known as Confusing Draught, is a potion which causes confusion in the drinker.
Few details have been revealed regarding it, but it seems unwise that how to make a potion with such potential as a date rape drug was taught to a group of horny teenagers.
Related drugs: Rat Tonic, Shrinking Solution and Wolfsbane Potion.
Compulsory to drink before going on stage to compete in Hot Shot, the actual effects of Cuppliance are not entirely clear. It does seem to affect the judgement of those who take it, making them more vulnerable to badgering by others.
As the name of Cuppliance – a portmanteau of ‘cup’ and ‘compliance’ – implies, it is a vital tool in the maintenance of the status quo in the dystopian future where most episodes of Black Mirror seem to occur, ensuring the vulnerability of the contestants on Hot Shot to the wishes of the judges.
Technically, Dagger isn’t really a drug – it’s a semi-random gumbo of assorted cheap drugs, all mixed together and sold with deeply suspicious assurances all through the Red Row region of Spire. It’s a powder, usually brownish and crystalline, sold by the pouch and usually taken by snorting in lines.
Given its unpredictable effects and tough-sounding name, it should be no surprise that using Dagger tends to cause as many – if not more – problems than it solves. The morning after, you’ll likely have more bruises and less money. If you’re lucky enough to get off lightly.
Related Drugs: Ambrosia, Blues, Carotid, Chum, Corpsefruit, Devilsroot, The Dose, Glimmer, Godsmoke, Ivory, Maiden’s Prayer, Malak, Mushrooms & Sulphur
Devilweed is made from the leaves from the wyssin plant, which are dried and
rolled into a tobacco-like substance and smoked, although they can be taken in other ways also.
Although native to worlds where magic is common, Devilweed is not itself magical, and appears to be local equivalent of marijuana in these worlds.
Related Drugs: Agony, Baccaran, Luhix, Mordayn Vapor, Mushroom Powder, Redflower Leaves, Sannish, Terran Brandy and Vodare.
Dream, also known as Bliss, is an addictive narcotic sold by assorted drug dealers in the world of Midkemia.
The few users that are mentioned are all whores, and it’s possible that Dream is provided to them by their pimps to keep them addicted and willing to work. The drug’s hallucinogenic properties provide an escape from the crushing reality of their lives (as whores working from brutal criminals in a world with medieval technology), but the need to pay for it embeds them further into these lives. It is a deeply unpleasant situation, and more than one such user of Dream has committed suicide.
Little has been revealed of Dreamsmoke, other than that it is smoked (as the name suggests) and that smoke leaves a pungent scent behind afterwards.
Based on contextual clues, Dreamsmoke is probably a name for a strain of marijuana, and, given the nature of the world in which it exists, likely a magically enhanced one.
In the year 3000, Electricity – no, it’s not the name of some new drug, it’s the exact thing you think of when you hear the word – is dangerously addictive to robots. It causes shocking levels of intoxication, hallucinations, and worst of all, involvement with the Church of Robotology, a puritanical sect of robot worshippers whose doctrines seem to be the only way to break the cycle of addiction. (They also have a fully functional Robot Hell to which sinners are sent. It’s located in what was New Jersey.)
Related Drugs: Comatonin, Dr Flim Flam’s Miracle Cream, Human Horn, Slurm & Space Honey
Funnybone is one of many designer drugs developed by Orange County pharmacologist Sandy Chapman, and like most of his output, it is a colourless liquid that is taken by dropping directly into the eye.
Funnybone is a euphoric intoxicant, a drug that makes you laugh at almost anything.
Related Drugs: Apprehension of Beauty, Buzz, California Mello, Get Wired, Pattern Perception, Rhinoceros & Verbality
Gigglepig is a variant form of ecstasy that experienced a brief vogue as the party drug du jour in Brooklyn in the second half of 2014.
Due the efforts of a New York Police Department task force headed by detective Rosa Diaz of the Ninety-Ninth Precinct, the pipeline smuggling the drug into the city was shut down, and the remaining street supplies of Gigglepig were consumed or abandoned shortly thereafter.
Related Drugs: Turgidol and Taxi
HFS – short for Holy Fucking Shit is a synthetic drug sold by students of Sagan High School, which they obtain from their connections in the One Percenters. It is a potent euphoric and hallucinogen, with a high rate of fatal overdoses.
Fortunately, thanks to the efforts of the undercover police unit based at 21 Jump Street, the criminals who create and sell the drug have now been shut down.
Icpathua is a sedative created from a plant that grows naturally in wherever it is that the true human beings (not vodsels like you and I) come from. Like most matters regarding the human beings, it is shrouded in mystery.
It appears to be a mild euphoric when consumed by human beings directly from the plant, but can also be refined into a strong sedative that knocks out even the strongest vodsel males. In the latter capacity, it was used as part of an extensive hunting operation in eastern Scotland, to capture vodsels for their meat, which is considered a delicacy by human beings, and shipped back to their home to be sold at extortionate prices.
Ivory is a very potent hypnotic harvested from the lands far north of Spire. Its name is actually somewhat accurate, as it created by grinding the venomous tusks of vicious narwhal-like amphibians, although accounts vary as whether or not the venom is removed first.
Ivory is a popular drug, although not always a cheap one. Even Mister Alas, drow crime lord and owner of one-third of (appropriately) the Ivory Quarter of Spire, is not always able to afford it, although he takes nothing else if he at all can – and many residents of Spire think that a high good enough to make a crime lord break the rules about getting high on their own supply is at least worth trying once. Maybe twice…
Related Drugs: Ambrosia, Blues, Carotid, Chum, Corpsefruit, Dagger, Devilsroot, The Dose, Glimmer, Godsmoke, Maiden’s Prayer, Malak, Mushrooms & Sulphur
A common drug among the poorer citizens of the Empire of Great Kesh, on the world of Midkemia, Joy is a strong euphoric, commonly found in powdered form.
A small amount of Joy, which is usually taken mixed with water or wine, is sufficient for a night’s euphoria. A not much larger dose could reduce the user to a blissed-out stupor lasting days, and in sufficient quantities, it will simply render the user unconscious until it leaves their system.
It is sometimes transported in a more concentrated form, a yellow powder called Heart of Joy that is worth around a thousand times the street value of Joy.
Related drugs: Coltari.
Kef is a highly addictive drug, which is generally believed to decrease emotions, allowing greater rationality. However, these effects are very limited in duration. After only a few doses, these effects wear off, leaving only the addiction and the intoxicating effects.
Withdrawal from Kef is a lengthy and painful process that virtually no one is willing to undertake voluntarily.
In the year 3000, the Earth has been conquered by an alien race called the Psychlos, who come from a heavy gravity world and are bigger and tougher than humans – the average Psychlo stands nine feet tall. As such, their booze is also bigger and tougher – it’s a beverage called Kerbango, which appears to fill much the same cultural niche that alcohol does for humans.
Which is to say that while under the influence of Kerbango, Psychlos have been known to crash ground cars, gamble away vast sums of money, and act in a variety of other self-destructive fashions. It is not known how drinking Kerbango would affect a human, but it’s unlikely to be pretty.
An extremely expensive and addictive concoction of mostly natural herbs, Kosh is the foremost pleasure drug sold on Gehenna (or more accurately, on the station of the same name that floats in the atmosphere of that gas giant). It is rumoured to be the most intense pleasure drug, providing what was once described as the “penultimate pleasure” – a level of pleasure so high as to be just barely short of fatal.
Fortunately for the universe at large, the drug lords of Gehenna jealously protect its formula and prevent its export with unmistakable (and usually life-ending) firmness.
Related Drugs: Carvati’s Cure, RC-12 and Rejuvenex
K-Pop is a variant of Ecstasy, which also combines certain features of Adderall. It was created by Sandra June Jang, a high school chemistry teacher who supplemented her income by cooking drugs for the Korean Power gang.
It is a great high, making the skin of the user feel like it is being stroked by chinchilla fur. June was killed and the Korean Power gang was put out of business, at least temporarily – the head of the gang has a copy of her recipe, and when he finally gets out of prison, he plans to go back to dealing K-Pop right across Los Angeles.
Growing on, and forming almost the entire diet of the inhabitants of an un-named island in the Mediterranean off the coast of North Africa, the Lotus plant is infamous for its powerful stupefying effects.
The people who live on this island have no recognizable culture other than consumption of the Lotus plant, extreme lassitude and a certain lazy friendliness to outsiders. The only known name for them is that given them in contempt by Ulysses, Lotus-Eaters.
Basically, the Lotus-Eaters live an idyllic life of being perpetually stoned. No wonder they so offended a man of action like Ulysses.
Originating in Numenor, from whence it was brought to Middle Earth by the Numeroeans, Pipe-Weed is an analogue of tobacco. The flowering plant that it grows from is called Galenas, and was prized by the Numenoreans for the sweet scent of its flowers.
It was first cultivated and smoked by Hobbits, specifically one Tobold Hornblower from the Southfarthing of the Shire, and the best Pipe-Weed is still considered to come from that region.
From the Hobbits, the use of it for smoking spread among Men and Dwarves, and even Wizards, radiating out in particular from the crossroads of Bree, where traders from all those peoples regularly congregated. As such, other common names for Pipe-Weed include Westmansweed and Halfling’s Leaf.
Related drugs: Athelas, Ent-Draughts and Miruvóre.
Praist is an intoxicant and mild hallucinogen, native to and highly popular on the world of Banjer, now a member of the Polity.
It is consumed most often in the form of a tea-like drink, and is rated to be about as addictive as nicotine. It is a byproduct of the lifecycle of the treel, worm-like creatures that live in symbiosis with a plant called the banoak. Upon the death of the treels, the substance is extracted from their bodies and lightly treated to reach a saleable form. Praist is no longer common on Banjer, as that world’s accession to the Polity resulted in the crime gangs that sold it being wiped out.
Related Drugs: Aldetox.
Sannish is a bluish liquid made from a variety of ingredients ranging from wolves’ milk to the powdered form of a desert plant.
Sannish is a mild intoxicant that causes physical bliss and an immunity to pain for several hours. However, it also causes a stuporous languor in the user, who will be disinclined to take any physical actions, or even think particularly hard. It is a popular drug whose users can be easily spotted by the blue stains on their lips, which become permanent if usage goes on long enough.
Related Drugs: Agony, Baccaran, Devilweed, Luhix, Mordayn Vapor, Mushroom Powder, Redflower Leaves, Terran Brandy and Vodare.
Scramble is a euphoric designed more or less accidentally by CIA-sponsored pharmacists in an attempt to create a better class of interrogation enhancer. Its intended effect was to intensify memory, but although that is indeed one of its effects, it does so in a way that is more or less useless for interrogation purposes.
Scramble brings back good memories accompanied by a euphoric high, which often makes its users appear very withdrawn and physically uncoordinated. But after a peak is reached, a downward cycle begins: the memories become progressively less pleasant and the euphoric effects slowly turn depressive.
Despite this, Scramble is at least as addictive as most opiates, and has similar physical effects with long term use. It is also quite potent: a single kilogram of Scramble will last even a heavy user for a year and then some.
Not the element of that name, but similar-smelling, Sulphur is a crystal rendered from the oily, pitch-black residue left by demonic incursions into Spire. Smoked in glass pipes whose fumes are inhaled, users report a fantastic rush and a skewing of their morality in a sadistic direction. In fact, the greater the amount consumed, the more that carrying out unpleasant or cruel acts feels to the user.
Sulphur is rare and expensive most of the time – if it should suddenly become more readily available or cheaper, it means that demonic incursions have increased in number (usually as a result of some idiot actually summoning demons), and is a reliable indicator that bad times are coming very soon for everyone.
Related Drugs: Ambrosia, Blues, Carotid, Chum, Corpsefruit, Dagger, Devilsroot, The Dose, Glimmer, Godsmoke, Ivory, Maiden’s Prayer, Malak & Mushrooms
Tateen is a mild intoxicant, mostly used by slaves on the world of Kelewan to dull the mental suffering of their servitude.
Prolonged usage of Tateen stains the teeth of users brown.
Tava is a gaseous intoxicant favoured among the kinds of people who favour such things in the Chiss Ascendancy. It is cheap and easily available in the Ascendancy, with mild doses caused inebriation and higher ones temporarily knocking out those affected.
While Tava is quick to take effect, it wears off just as quickly, with few effects remaining once the the quantity of it in the air is exhausted. For this reason, it is much-used by young Chiss students for pranks on each other, and on their more boring instructors.
Truth or Consequences, as the name suggests, has effects similar to the party game of the same name, with one key diffference: you can’t quit. A colourless liquid not very different from water to touch, it is often used to provoke responses that are more honest than the respondent would like.
The drug suppresses inhibitions, leading those who have taken it to speak their minds with great vehemence. As such, it is a common prank for the drug to be unknowingly administered to priests, politicians, cops and other self-appointed moral authorities. It is equally common for such pranks to end in gunfire.
Related drugs: Skullbustium, Triptine and Yaginol.
Urizen is named for one of the gods in William Blake’s mythology for England, a deity who sought to impose reason on the world. The drug named for him was quite the reverse.
Inspired by the American “Love Bomb” experiments, Urizen was a British project (and the involvement of un-named but shadowy government agencies in its creation is confirmed) that combined the drug-based aspects of Love Bomb with advanced genetic recoding. Urizen bonded to the spinal column of users, and became a part of their DNA, where it generated hormones that would achieve aphrodisiacal submission in the user by bypassing their conscious brain entirely. However, a single dose – usually administered by injection – lasts only 14 and a half hours, and can be over-ridden by extreme pain.
Related drugs: Love Bomb
Vodare is a drug favoured by sadists and berserkers, especially those that worship the dread god Rallaster, known variously as the Razor God, the Insane God and the God of Madmen. It is made from the crushed petals of a flower that grows only on the graves of those who dedicated their lives to the worship of Rallaster, and carries a small portion of the god’s power and nature in it.
An extremely bitter brown powder, Vodare is almost always mixed with something to sweeten it when swallowed, such as honeyed water or sweet wine. It causes it users to grow bold, arrogant and somewhat careless of danger – a state which is ideal for committing the kinds of casual murder and offhand slaughter that Rallaster likes to see as votive offerings.
Fortunately, its use is almost unknown outside of Rallaster’s small, secretive cult, and even more fortunately, the cult exists more in name than in fact, as most of those who worship Rallaster fear the discovery of their faith, and are frequently loners to boot.
Related Drugs: Agony, Baccaran, Devilweed, Luhix, Mordayn Vapor, Mushroom Powder, Redflower Leaves, Sannish and Terran Brandy.
VXN Gas is a weaponised drug that attacks the central nervous system. It is inhaled, and acts as a potent euphoric, inducing a sensation of pleasure and well-being that erodes willpower and leads to a semi-voluntary state of paralysis.
In fact, its euphoric effects are so strong that it is not unknown for those exposed to develop addictions to barbituates or Bentlam, as the effects of the VXN are quite pleasant to experience.
Related Drugs: Bentlam, Fayalin, Hadive, Ladolian, Nitrolabe, Thionite and Vee-Two Gas.
ZAP (an acronym for Zootoxic Acid Psychogalvanide) was a particularly nasty drug that was briefly the scourge of Madripoor until WOlverine, sorry, ‘Patch”, got involved.
It was nasty less because of its effects – though a potent intoxicant and stimulant is rarely considered a good thing by the authorities – and more because of its origin. You see, the active ingredient of ZAP was harvested from the brain fluid of Madripoorian spider monkeys, an endangered species unique to that island. The Madripoorian Army was compelling a native tribe to hunt and capture the monkeys. In a sense, the problem is now solved, as the monkeys were swiftly hunted to extinction, meaning that no more of the drug could be made. But from the point of view of the monkeys, and the natives who loved them as “The Little People of the Forest”, it was a pyrrhic victory at best.
ZAP was also sometimes refined into an even stronger drug named Thunderbolt. A strong euphoric, a dose of Thunderbolt gave the user enhanced strength and endurance, but at a price: even a single dose was inevitably fatal.
Which goes to show that even for drug dealers, the Madripoorian criminal syndicates had an extremely poor business model..
A common although new street drug in the year 2052, Zyme is believed to have first been created in New York City. At very least, that is where it first came to the attention of law enforcement.
The effects of Zyme vary according to the individual (and also to the quality and purity of the dose taken, both of which are wildly variable as with most street drugs), but commonly cause what is characterised as a “delirium” for approximately one minute. There is some evidence suggesting that this can cause permanent mental damage, and the drug has been given the highest priority by law enforcement.
Related Drugs: Ambrosia
Zzonga is a drug made from the Zzonga fruit of the Zzonga bush. It is a highly addictive intoxicant that causes a level of fascination with whatever is in front of the user that borders on OCD.
The plant it grows on is a small shrub, growing no more than four foot high, with a multitude of spiky, short leaves. The fruit itself resembles a strawberry in size and colour (although tending more to pink than to red), and has a very distinctive smell (which it retains when juiced or cooked).
Effects of the drug last for up to four days for a single dose, and the fascination effect makes it almost impossible to concentrate while under the influence. For this reason, the Thyatian empire made a point of encouraging addiction to Zzonga in their enemy, the Alphatian empire – reckoning that the Alphatian’s magical superiority, caused by their great numbers of wizards, would be nullified if none of the wizards were able to focus enough to cast even the simplest of spells.