@sterling: The thing is this is the only ingredient in the entire game that has this issue, you can absolutely craft every other alchemy item no problem. You are clearly meant to be able to craft any and every tool there is. Skills are of course limited. And like I said, I happened to not get any hides at all period and would have been permanently left with several 10% oils.
As I recall, the reddish drowners drop monster eyes a lot.
How about an Ekimmara hide? I need it to upgrade my Hanged Man's oil, but I've only seen one Ekimmara in the game, as part of a quest.
There are at least 4 diagram upgrades that require Ekimmara hides. Unfortunately there are only 3 Ekimmara's in the entire game period, they are all quest related, and on top of that also not guaranteed to drop the hide part. Which is exactly what happened to me, none of them dropped the hide. I was sitting on 4 unupgraded oils for dozens of hours even tho i had enhanced and superior schematics. Eventually I just searched online what gives and where there are more Ekimmara's, there weren't, just those 3.
Fortunately there is a console command unlocker mod on the nexus already that has links to the item lists too. So I just went ahead and added the 4 required hides (they're called Ekima epidermis in the list). Because fuck that.
@ares42: One that topic where is a dude that buys those friggin things? I swear to god I have once seen a merchant able to buy them *they were not red marked) but have not been able to find him again since. I wouldn't mind just dropping them, if they didn't leave a marker on the ground.
@karkarov: Sadly I forgot the exact names of the kids but in Novigrad you can find a letter in the school that says several kids were found on their doorstep one morning recently with no idea how they got there and you can also find a list of names of the kids currently in the school, I'm just not 100% sure its them tho it seems like it is. The tree spirit monster does slaughter the village however.
I started getting really cocky in regards to combat after doing a few quests much higher level then me even on B&BB difficulty.
Then decided to do a relatively my level hunter contract back in Velen, to kill a Chort, and that shit just murdered me the first couple times. Humbled as I was with my usual tools and methods of fighting enemies (I even had an appropriate +50% dmg oil) were just shrugged off by that guy. Went and re looked at the bestiary, used the one bomb that best was susceptible to and instantly made the fight so much easier. Don't want to go into detail but it just seemed so natural.
@sessh: So I went and did the quest, you should do it. Actually the way Dijkstra phrases it when he initially proposes it to you is key and is 100% accurate. He just asks you to help out with a part.It's just that I (and others i think) read further into it.