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Version 0.19: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.
Petrify.png Petrify
Level 4
School1 Earth
School2 Transmutation
Source(s) Book of Alchemy
Book of Geomancy
Book of Misfortune
Casting noise 3
Spell noise 0
Power Cap 50
Targetting Target or direction
Range LOS
Flags MR check
Petrifies a targeted creature. If successful, the target is slowed down for a while until it is temporarily turned into stone. In this state, the target will take less damage upon being hit.

Petrify is a level 4 Earth/Transmutation spell that first slows, then petrifies its target a few turns later.


If the target fails a magic resistance check, it will gain petrifying status, slowing down and petrifying soon after. This leaves the victim unable to move or act for several turns, during which time they cannot dodge attacks, are vulnerable to stabbing attempts, and will no longer be airborne. However, because the victim is now made of stone, he receives significantly less damage: -50% while petrified, -33% while petrifying (after AC)[1][2]. This spell requires a clear line of fire.

Earth elementals, gargoyles, catoblepases, statues, and insubstantial creatures cannot be petrified by any means. Players can become immune by activating Zin's Vitalisation, being gargoyles or by being in Statue, Wisp or Shadow Form. Elyvilon's Purification and Ru's Draw Out Power cancel the petrifying status effect.


  • Stopping opponents with Petrify can be extremely useful for making escapes. Individual pursuers can be frozen in place while you run to a safe place to heal. Petrifying the lead monster of a pack that's chasing you through a narrow hallways will stop all the others behind it. When successful, Petrify is generally more effective and longer lasting than Conjure Flame, Confuse, or Slow for escaping foes.
  • Petrify has nice synergy with Lee's Rapid Deconstruction (and to a lesser extent with Shatter): petrified targets have the same vulnerability to these spells as statues. If you wait until the target is entirely petrified, hitting it with LRD will create a very large explosion of shrapnel, which can be quite useful against groups of monsters.
  • Winged monsters can be drowned with this spell. This is particularly useful against the harpies in the Shoals, which have fairly low magic resistance. This trick doesn't work against monsters that fly using magic (including the player character).
  • Casting this spell multiple times on the same target will speed the petrification process up. Two successful applications will turn most targets to stone immediately.


  1. (0.19.0)
  2. (0.19.0)