So, I'm trying to make a fast food/business wizard (McCaster's Burgers). The idea being that I capture a Hydra and preserve it with flesh to stone. Whenever I need more meat for the Big Cast Burger, I would cast stone to flesh on the Hydra, cut off a head, let it regrow and then re-stone it to preserve the freshness of the Hydra.

Infinite meat here, so the Hydra could supply a McCaster's restaurant forever. I'm ending world hunger, 1 spell at a time. I can even sell them cheap, as the production costs are low.

Now the problem here is PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Aberrations). My wizard needs to hide the Hydra. I was thinking once the hydra is turned to stone, I could shape it into a flower bed using Shape Stone. Now the problem is what happens when I turn the Hydra thats been altered as such back to flesh using stone to flesh?

none of these spells do damage per-say.

I am not cutting anything until they are in flesh state.

If I cut a Hydra flower head from the Hydra bed, would the Hydra regrow a head, and in what shape?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Is the real question the interaction between these spells, or is the real question about fast food supply logistics? Knowing what's actually important to the question will significantly improve the usefulness of the answers it receives. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 19, 2016 at 20:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ Pathfinder and DnD 3.5e aren't the same system. Please choose only one for the tags. \$\endgroup\$
    – Smurfton
    Jan 19, 2016 at 20:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ You also might get better answers if you trim the context down. Is the business relevant to the question? \$\endgroup\$ Jan 19, 2016 at 20:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ Mandatory OotS reference. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 25, 2016 at 7:53

4 Answers 4


The flesh to stone spell notes that: "If the statue resulting from this spell is broken or damaged, the subject (if ever returned to its original state) has similar damage or deformities." So breaking your hydra statue into a flower bed will certainly kill the hydra.

The stone to flesh spell requires a DC 15 Fortitude save to survive the process. (But note you could use break enchantment instead and not have this drawback.)

There are lots of less-involved ways to create food using spell slots. For example you could cast create food and water (and flavor it with prestidigitation), or you could cast heroes' feast or even goodberry.

Finally, note that you can cast stone to flesh on a pile of actual stone and you'll still get meat out of it. No need to involve a hydra -- just set up shop near a mountain.

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    \$\begingroup\$ “Ask us about Meat Quarry® franchise opportunities in your hamlet!” \$\endgroup\$ Jan 19, 2016 at 22:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ Honestly, I want to give this an extra +1 for the final paragraph alone. Protip: Talk to the local dwarves before setting up; Since Flesh to Stone won't usually affect non-stone metals in its area of effect, you could potentially talk them into delivering stone with difficult-to-extract mineral veins and then carting away the valuable non-meat by-products free of charge. \$\endgroup\$
    – GMJoe
    Jan 19, 2016 at 23:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ I dont see how Im breaking a hydra statue when I'm using Shape stone to deform the hydra into a new shape (a flower bed). I need to correct my original question to clarify that I am altering now stone hydra using Shape Stone. \$\endgroup\$
    – Urbatin
    Feb 2, 2016 at 7:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Urbatin Note also that Stone to Flesh will not cause a stone flower bed to turn into a flower bed made of flowers - it'll turn it into a flower bed made of meat, which is kinda gross. Deforming a hydra into a flower bed will usually kill it for the same reasons that deforming it into a paper-thin sheet will usually kill it. Having it be stone while the deformation is taking place will at best delay its death until it turns back into flesh. \$\endgroup\$
    – GMJoe
    Feb 2, 2016 at 23:52

The Flower Hydra Stone would turn into a horrible mess of meat and blood, and very likely dead once you cast stone to flesh again.

So, no regeneration possible once you are dead.


This should work fine in both 3.5 and Pathfinder (the spells are functionally the same and there's no polymorph subschool stuff going on), as long as you use the second listed power of the Stone to Flesh spell. The key issue there is to track the location of the hydra's soul, as

Such flesh is inert and lacking a vital life force unless a life force or magical energy is available. (For example, this spell would turn a stone golem into a flesh golem, but an ordinary statue would become a corpse.)

(Stone to flesh spell description)

When the hydra is petrified, the soul clearly remains with the statue; the hydra can't be raised, isn't dead, etc. The only question, then, is whether stone shape somehow automagically kills the hydra, which, lacking any indication that it does, it does not. Note that you could just as easily turn your hydra into a giant rat with the soul of a hydra, or anything else as long as you are ok with a hydra-soul for that matter, as the Stone to Flesh spell does not care what kind of body you are making so long as it is flesh and of the appropriate size. You will need a chiseller, however, to get the fine details impossible with Stone Shape right-- or else your hydra will be at least a little deformed and possibly very bloody.

Given the temperment of Hydras and the existence of your PETA group, however, you may want to use the soul of something more socially acceptable, like damned humans, and just trap them in your hydra body when you need to regenerate some meat.


This is using D&D 3.5 as the reference

It also isn't clear how you would transmute the stone hydra into a flower bed. You may intend to use Polymorph Any Object, but that has a duration and high difficult attached to it. Furthermore, cutting a flower would quite possibly kill the hydra.

Damage taken by the new form can result in the injury or death of the polymorphed creature. In general, damage occurs when the new form is changed through physical force.

If the hydra didn't die, it would transform back when the spell ends. At that time, the flower you cut off would likely transform back, as the spell is applied to the entire object and duration based.

Furthermore, that flower would probably wither and die. Most likely, nothing would grow in its place. As the spell states:

Unlike polymorph, polymorph any object does grant the creature the Intelligence score of its new form. If the original form didn’t have a Wisdom or Charisma score, it gains those scores as appropriate for the new form.

This indicates that, with the exception of special properties that grant bonuses, the polymorphed object will behave like what it has become.

This assumes that Polymorph Any Object is the spell you use to make the stone hyra into a flowerbed. If you are using a different spell, it needs to be specified to accurately answer the question.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe it's just me, but it seems odd that you'd assume someone's going to use a particular eighth-level spell to shape stone when A) we don't know they're capable of casting spells above the 6th level, B) there are multiple lower-level spells for doing the same thing, and C) there are mundane ways of doing the same thing. \$\endgroup\$
    – GMJoe
    Jan 21, 2016 at 23:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GMJoe It's not just you! There are a plethora of different spells that could result in a similar outcome. The problem is I don't know which spell he intends to use. I wanted to answer the question he asked, and show him how it is possible to come to that conclusion, but without knowing exactly what he intends to I had to make some assumptions. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 22, 2016 at 14:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MirroredFate I was going to shape it into a flower bed using shape stone. now that the hydra is stone, the spell shape stone should be able to change its shape. \$\endgroup\$
    – Urbatin
    Feb 2, 2016 at 7:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Urbatin Find detail isn't possible with Stone Shape. You can make things like crude doors or coffers. You can't make a flower bed, and certainly not a still growing flower bed. \$\endgroup\$ Feb 2, 2016 at 21:52

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