If you're willing to suffer to get the best mutagen effect use only greater damage mutagen and go towards impregnation in the alchemy tree and do NOT apply mutagens before you get impregnation. At the very end of the game you'll be able to kill the dragon in 1-2 strikes on dark mode... but because you no longer can get greater mutagens easy the rest of the game won't be very fun, actually. I tried it and didn't like it, despite such a great effect: one hit - one kill in the last chapter, it's because this effect kicks off only at the very end because you cannot fill all the necessary mutagen slots before the chapter 3 anyway (after the patch).
Hm? Could you elaborate on that?
And at least a fair chunk should be mutagenized even before then, or not?
Besides, I think if you dedicate yourself so much to this one goal, you very well deserve the benefits... and that's what I'm going for.
I've done some 'research' and it seems like critical effect chance is subject to enemy resistance, which means not all enemies will be equally effected and none of the bosses, whereas pure dmg applies to everything regardless of the circumstances.
Thoughts on this?
So, the basic problem is that there are almost no greater mutagens before chapter 3 (after the patch) but in chapter 3 you almost have nobody to fight with, with exception of couple of bosses. The new rule is: lesser mutagens are common in chapter 1, regular in chapter 2 and greater mutagens in chapter 3. You can get few greater mutagens from endrega queens but I've never got strength mutagens from them. And you REALLY need at least 4 greater strength mutagens for a kickass effect. To kill the dragon with 1-2 strikes you need at least 6 and all the damage bonuses + oil that gives extra damage + potions that give extra damage. You can try lesser and regular mutagens... may be they'll work out too.
Critical effect is weaker because there are no cumulative bonuses for increasing critical effect value but there are many of them for damage, especially in the alchemy tree. And as you fairly noticed there is no resistance for pure damage ;)