Orichalcum (the Latin word for "bronze") is a orange-golden arcane alloy, which can only be manufactured with the means of Alchemy. The very existence of Orichalcum is a metallurgical nightmare, as it cannot exist without the presence of magic. It is believed by some magical authorities in studying ancient legends that the inhabitants of Atlantis discovered orichalcum.
Orichalcum is very valuable (a single unit alone is worth 88,000 nuyen), and both the raw materials and the production process are time-consuming and expensive. Orichalcum is needed in particular for the production of magical foci and telesma.
For the production of orichacum, one unit (100 grams) each of gold, silver, copper and mercury alchemical radicals are needed (Note: These radicals are not to be confused with chemical radicals). The four metal radicals must be exposed to 28 days of continuing circulation together to make one or more units of orichalcum, depending on the skill of the alchemist. A unit of orichalcum weighs 10 grams.
Natural Orichalcum Edytuj
Although there have been many rumors for years of "natural orichalcum" deposits (particularly in the region of Snowdonia), orichalcum did not exist in nature until the passing of Halley's Comet. During 2061, several veins of orichalcum suddenly started appearing in select locations around the world (including Antarctica and the Moon), causing a chaotic and massive "Orichalcum Rush" by both independent prospectors and major corporations. These natural orichalcum veins dried up and disappeared after 2062, although several prospectors remain hopeful that they will return upon another increase in the mana cycle.
Natural orichalcum in general is less refined and less potent than manufactured orichalcum due to impurities in the orichalcum ore. Some elements of natural orichalcum, however, have been found to provide unusual and unique magical properties to certain telesma.