polymorph any object


Rules Questions

Liberty's Edge

so i am completely confused with how this spell is supposed to function. i understand the duration fact but my question comes with the actual effects that the spell produces when you transform. do you just get the powers, ability scores, hitpoints, etc of the thing you turned into or does it work more like animal aspect where you get a few abilities and stat increases? what if that thing also has polymorph abilities? can polymorphs stack on each other? do mental scores change to the creature you are using? if so why is there a line saying ability scores you dont have are set to 10 or 5? plz help


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Polymorph Any Object

So looking at this, most of the questions can be answered by looking into the bulk of the text, but as it is a bit of an advanced spell, going to break it down a bit it happens to be a spell I wish was used more in certain campaigns, but neither here nor there...

For Length:

Polymorph Any Object, Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:


If the target of the spell does not have physical ability scores (Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution), this spell grants a base score of 10 to each missing ability score. If the target of the spell does not have mental ability scores (Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma), this spell grants a score of 5 to such scores. 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. A nonmagical object cannot be made into a magic item with this spell. Magic items aren't affected by this spell.

In the event something doesn't have Intelligence/Wisdom/Charisma, such as a mindless construct (or even undead), then it gets a minimum score for the mental attributes of '5'.

In the event something doesn't have a Strength/Dexterity/Constitution score, then it gets a minimum score for the physical attributes of '10'.

Polymorph Any Object, Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:


This spell cannot create material of great intrinsic value, such as copper, silver, gems, silk, gold, platinum, mithral, or adamantine. It also cannot reproduce the special properties of cold iron in order to overcome the damage reduction of certain creatures.

This spell can also be used to duplicate the effects of baleful polymorph, greater polymorph, flesh to stone, stone to flesh, transmute mud to rock, transmute metal to wood, or transmute rock to mud.

So far, it looks like it's fully the form, but let's look at Greater Polymorph to see what it says.

Greater Polymorph, Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:

This spell transforms a willing creature into an animal, humanoid or elemental of your choosing; the spell has no effect on unwilling creatures, nor can the creature being targeted by this spell influence the new form assumed (apart from conveying its wishes, if any, to you verbally).

This spell functions as polymorph except that it allows the creature to take on the form of a dragon or plant creature. If you use this spell to cause the target to take on the form of an animal or magical beast, it functions as beast shape IV. If the form is that of an elemental, the spell functions as elemental body III. If the form is that of a humanoid, the spell functions as alter self. If the form is that of a plant, the spell functions as plant shape II. If the form is that of a dragon, the spell functions as form of the dragon I. The subject may choose to resume its normal form as a full-round action; doing so ends the spell.

The big thing with Greater is that more things can be done with it, but in both the case of Polymorph and Greater Polymorph, the subject has to be willing. Polymorph Any Object requires a Fortitude save, and if the target isn't 'close' enough, the duration can be a matter of minutes, or if very close, permanent.

Polymorph effects do not stack, typically.

Does this help?


Duration not withstanding, when you use PAO to turn a creature into another creature you use the corresponding polymorph spell to determine what happens (like Form of the Dragon when you turn into a dragon). This also pretty much applies when turning a non-creature into a creature except that you substitute the non-existent ability scores of the object with a 5 or 10 as appropriate.

The real problems arise with this spell when you start trying to turn things into creatures that don't have an already existing polymoprh spell to recreate. Such as aberration type creatures.

Liberty's Edge

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Polymorph Any Object

So looking at this, most of the questions can be answered by looking into the bulk of the text, but as it is a bit of an advanced spell, going to break it down a bit it happens to be a spell I wish was used more in certain campaigns, but neither here nor there...

** spoiler omitted **...

ok so why would there be a line of "it gets a score of 10 if it didnt have one" if you just get the full stat block? if i turn an undead into a dragon is its new constitution 10 or the same as the dragon? a bit of context. a friend wants to use it to turn himself into a natural lycanthrope. is that possible and what are the limitations of it? can he use his lycan ability to shape change even though he gained it through a polymorph spell in the first place?


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Okay, so a caster is bored one day and decides to turn their couch into a gelatinous cube, just for the heck of it.

Couches (an inanimate object) do not have an Intelligence/Wisdom/Charisma score normally. They have hardness and HP.

So they'd get a 10 in any score the form *doesn't* have physically, and a 5 in any score the form doesn't have mentally.

As far as natural lycanthrope, let's look at what they are.

Lycanthrope Description with Wererat and Werewolf Examples

It's actually a really *tame* use of Polymorph Any Object.

Just remember that all benefits and drawbacks of a form apply, so DR10/Silver would be present, and if you're not the GM, expect your GM to have it come up on a more regular basis as time progresses and word gets out about what the character's form is.


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You don't get the stat block of the creatures, ever. You modify your original stats per the spells that simulate the effect you're going for (like Form of the Dragon).

In the event that a creature or object doesn't have an ability score you give it a 5 or 10 as appropriate and modify per the effect of the spell being simulated (again, like form of the dragon).

Liberty's Edge

Claxon wrote:

You don't get the stat block of the creatures, ever. You modify your original stats per the spells that simulate the effect you're going for (like Form of the Dragon).

In the event that a creature or object doesn't have an ability score you give it a 5 or 10 as appropriate and modify per the effect of the spell being simulated (again, like form of the dragon).

so would it be like giving the person the same abilities both SU and EX as well as spell like abilities from the race and then maybe like a stat increase if appropriate? but they would not change their stats to match a creature description? like say if i wanted to be an ettin i wouldnt get automatically 20 strength (or whatever they have) but like a +6 to strength?


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No.

If you use Polymorph any Object on yourself to...
Turn into a dragon, it works like Form of the Dragon 1 (technically it works like Greater Polymorph, which says it works like FoD1. Except for the duration (which is calculated via the chart in Polymorph Any Object) it works exactly as if you had cast Form of the Dragon 1 on yourself. This applies as well for beast or magical creatures as Beast Shape IV, elementals with Elemental Body III, huamniods as alter self, plant (creatures) as Plant Shape II. So you don't get SU or Ex abilities unless the spell explicitly says so.

The problem becomes when you start doing things not covered by those other polymorph spells. Such as your Ettin example. Ettins are humanoid (giants). Humanoid types are covered by alter self, but Ettins are too large for normal use with Alter Self. So you would kind of have to extrapolate from this, and that should only be done by a GM.

Generally speaking I don't think you don't get any SLAs and only occasionally get Su or Ex abilities.

Really, PAO is a terrible spell because it leaves far too much open to interpretation because there are too many things not covered by the other Polymorph spells to explain how to run the spell.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Did you read through the polymorph section of the chapter on magic in the core rulebook?

Polymorph: A polymorph spell transforms your physical body to take on the shape of another creature. While these spells make you appear to be the creature, granting you a +10 bonus on Disguise skill checks, they do not grant you all of the abilities and powers of the creature. Each polymorph spell allows you to assume the form of a creature of a specific type, granting you a number of bonuses to your ability scores and a bonus to your natural armor. In addition, each polymorph spell can grant you a number of other benefits, including movement types, resistances, and senses. If the form you choose grants these benefits, or a greater ability of the same type, you gain the listed benefit. If the form grants a lesser ability of the same type, you gain the lesser ability instead. Your base speed changes to match that of the form you assume. If the form grants a swim or burrow speed, you maintain the ability to breathe if you are swimming or burrowing. The DC for any of these abilities equals your DC for the polymorph spell used to change you into that form.

In addition to these benefits, you gain any of the natural attacks of the base creature, including proficiency in those attacks. These attacks are based on your base attack bonus, modified by your Strength or Dexterity as appropriate, and use your Strength modifier for determining damage bonuses.

If a polymorph spell causes you to change size, apply the size modifiers appropriately, changing your armor class, attack bonus, Combat Maneuver Bonus, and Stealth skill modifiers. Your ability scores are not modified by this change unless noted by the spell.

Unless otherwise noted, polymorph spells cannot be used to change into specific individuals. Although many of the fine details can be controlled, your appearance is always that of a generic member of that creature's type. Polymorph spells cannot be used to assume the form of a creature with a template or an advanced version of a creature.

When you cast a polymorph spell that changes you into a creature of the animal, dragon, elemental, magical beast, plant, or vermin type, all of your gear melds into your body. Items that provide constant bonuses and do not need to be activated continue to function while melded in this way (with the exception of armor and shield bonuses, which cease to function). Items that require activation cannot be used while you maintain that form. While in such a form, you cannot cast any spells that require material components (unless you have the Eschew Materials or Natural Spell feat), and can only cast spells with somatic or verbal components if the form you choose has the capability to make such movements or speak, such as a dragon. Other polymorph spells might be subject to this restriction as well, if they change you into a form that is unlike your original form (subject to GM discretion). If your new form does not cause your equipment to meld into your form, the equipment resizes to match your new size.

While under the effects of a polymorph spell, you lose all extraordinary and supernatural abilities that depend on your original form (such as keen senses, scent, and darkvision), as well as any natural attacks and movement types possessed by your original form. You also lose any class features that depend upon form, but those that allow you to add features (such as sorcerers that can grow claws) still function. While most of these should be obvious, the GM is the final arbiter of what abilities depend on form and are lost when a new form is assumed. Your new form might restore a number of these abilities if they are possessed by the new form.

You can only be affected by one polymorph spell at a time. If a new polymorph spell is cast on you (or you activate a polymorph effect, such as wild shape), you can decide whether or not to allow it to affect you, taking the place of the old spell. In addition, other spells that change your size have no effect on you while you are under the effects of a polymorph spell.

If a polymorph spell is cast on a creature that is smaller than Small or larger than Medium, first adjust its ability scores to one of these two sizes using the following table before applying the bonuses granted by the polymorph spell.

Creature's Original Size Str Dex Con Adjusted Size
Fine +6 –6 —. Small
Diminutive +6 –4 — Small
Tiny +4 –2 — Small
Large. –4 +2 –2 Medium
Huge –8 +4 –4 Medium
Gargantuan –12 +4 –6 Medium
Colossal –16 +4 –8 Medium

(Sorry, but I am on the iPad and it may not have formatted correctly)

Almost all of your questions about what is or is not affected is answered here. Please review this and see if you still have questions or concerns.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

You might also reference the arcane discovery found in Blood of the Moon Player Companion, Werewolf Shape.

It lets you use Beast Shape IV or Shapechange to change into a lycanthrope with all of the benefits and such.


Also a note, it says it functions as Greater Polymorph, which begins: "This spell transforms a willing creature into an animal, humanoid or elemental of your choosing; the spell has no effect on unwilling creatures..." Note that this is not in the "Target" section of the spell and nothing in PaO changes this as far as I am aware. Is this the intent? I cannot say. Only that technically, it only works on willing creatures (though unwilling objects are still screwed, even though they can't be willing or unwilling...).


TrinitysEnd wrote:
Also a note, it says it functions as Greater Polymorph, which begins: "This spell transforms a willing creature into an animal, humanoid or elemental of your choosing; the spell has no effect on unwilling creatures..." Note that this is not in the "Target" section of the spell and nothing in PaO changes this as far as I am aware. Is this the intent? I cannot say. Only that technically, it only works on willing creatures (though unwilling objects are still screwed, even though they can't be willing or unwilling...).

I don't think it is the intention. I've always considered the spell an offensive weapon - and a cruelly humorous one at that. In previous editions of the game I used to turn people into hollow chocolate bunnies and cigars!

Nowadays as a GM I'm inclined to ban it. Not because it's too powerful but because the description is such a mess it's not clear how Paizo intend it to work.


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Nope, Polymorph Any Object is for willing creatures only. Baleful Polymorph is the offensive version of a polymorph spell, though PAO can be used to emulate Baleful Polymorph.

It should however be noted that unconscious creatures are considered willing.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

Polymorph any object highlights the problem with polymorph spells. Polymorphing is such a broad concept that requires a large spectrum to cover. Unfortunately, Pathfinder has a ridiculous lack of granularity in its spell selection. It creates a situation where a 9th level wizard can permanently transform and brainwash a dragon into a chicken. And yet that same wizard cannot permanently turn a man into an elf until level 15.

I generally run polymorph any object like the limited wish of polymorph spells. For any corner case, it simply replicates the effects of any polymorph spell of 7th level or lower.


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Just a rules citation:

Core Rule Book, Magic Chapter wrote:
Some spells restrict you to willing targets only. Declaring yourself as a willing target is something that can be done at any time (even if you're flat-footed or it isn't your turn). Unconscious creatures are automatically considered willing, but a character who is conscious but immobile or helpless (such as one who is bound, cowering, grappling, paralyzed, pinned, or stunned) is not automatically willing.

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