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Version 0.31: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.
Petrify.png Petrify
Level 4
School1 Alchemy
School2 Earth
Source(s) Book of Sloth
Book of Transmutation
Casting noise 3
Spell noise 0
Power Cap 100
Range 6
Flags Wl check, Dir or target, Needs tracer
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/Alchemy spell that inflicts the Petrifying status, which first slows, then fully disables its target a few turns later.

Useful Info

Targets a creature, and up to two hostile creatures adjacent to any previous target (randomly chosen).

If a victim fails a willpower check, it will gain the Petrifying status, which slows them down, reduces EV, and makes monsters vulnerable to low-tier stabs. They will turn to stone (Petrified) soon after. Successfully casting Petrify on a target that is already petrifying causes immediate petrification.

Petrified victims are unable to move or act for several turns. EV and SH are set to near 0. Monsters are vulnerable to high-tier stabs. Victims, now made of stone, receive significantly less damage: -33% while petrifying, and -50% while petrified (after AC).[1] Being petrified also grants immunity to negative energy and torment.

While petrifying or petrified, creatures are vulnerable to Lee's Rapid Deconstruction and Shatter.

The Petrify spell is less likely to succeed on the side targets. The main target is affected with the spell's full enchantment power; side targets are only affected by 66% of the enchantment power.


When a player is hit by Petrify, the petrifying status lasts for 2 decaAut. The petrified status lasts for 5 to 9 decaAut.[2] However, since Petrify resolves at the end of the player's turn, monsters can usually get 6.5 - 10.5 actions in a row. (You get to act, then monsters move, then you're petrified for 9 turns, so monsters get 10 actions in a row.)

When a monster is hit by the player's Petrify, the petrifying status lasts for 3 decaAut. The petrified status lasts for 150 / <(HD + 5) * (10/speed) + 1> decaAut, with a minimum of 8 decaAut.[3] Note: a monster displayed as "Speed: 100%" has a speed stat of 10 for this formula.


Players can cure petrifying with a potion of cancellation, Elyvilon's Purification, or Ru's Draw Out Power. Yara's Violent Unravelling and Quicksilver Bolt are more dangerous ways to cure petrifying, and if aimed at a hostile target, they can cure petrified. Unfortunately, being completely petrified leaves you unable to act; at that point, your only recourse is to hope you survive until the status wears off.


Other than the Petrify spell, calcifying dust (such as from the Petrifying Cloud spell) and chaos effects may cause the Petrifying effect.


Petrify is essentially a Hexes spell that is not in the Hexes school. After a few turns, a Petrified monster becomes unable to do anything, and is vulnerable to high-tier stabs. It has a number of uses:

  • It can 'frontload' a battle. If Petrify works, a monster is basically dead, given it is alone and you are good enough at stabbing. If a few Petrify attempts don't work, you can escape the fight (e.g. by retreating upstairs before the monster gets into melee) and try again. In other words, Petrify lets you "win" against a dangerous monster before losing any HP.
  • It can make it easier to escape. Pursuers can be frozen while you run to a safe place to heal - for example, you can petrify a monster to clog up a hallway. Petrify lasts longer than a spell like Confusing Touch.
  • It can be strong against tough foes with low willpower, such as hornets and two-headed ogres.

Note that being petrified reduces all damage by 50%, so Stone Arrow-ing a petrified target is significantly less effective. In order to get the full use of Petrify, invest into stabbing (Short Blades and Stealth), since the bonus from high-tier stabs is so high.

Tips & Tricks

  • Petrified targets are vulnerable to Lee's Rapid Deconstruction and Shatter.
    • Against monsters, casting LRD on a wall (without Petrify) is usually better for damage than using Petrify + LRD on a monster. But, if there are no convenient walls, then you can use Petrify to create an LRD target.
    • Watch out for Jorgrun, who has both Petrify and LRD.
  • 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.
    • Followers of Dithmenos can petrify a target in just one turn if their shadow successfully repeats the spell.

Monster Version

A few monsters also have access to Petrify, which works in the same way as the player version (except the changes to duration, as listed above).

The following enemies cast Petrify:

The following enemies may be able to cast Petrify, depending on their spell set:

Additionally, some monsters have other abilities that can result in petrification:


  • Prior to 0.31, Petrify did not affect targets adjacent to the caster, but it had a full-LOS range. It was also a level 4 Earth/Transmutations spell.
  • Prior to 0.28, creatures in the process of petrifying could not use SH, and petrifying monsters couldn't use ranged attacks (but could use spells or melee normally). Also, being Petrified did not interrupt taking stairs; you'd be petrified, then the climbing action would complete.
  • Prior to 0.12, petrifying monsters that flew using wings (harpies, hippogriffs, etc.) would ground them. Petrifying such enemies over deep water or lava would kill them instantly.


  1. (0.30.0) - monsters (0.30.0) - players
  2. (0.30.1)
  3. (0.30.1)