What is a Cockatrice in Pathfinder 2e? Ugly and aggressive, the dread cockatrice stalks garbage pits and hillside dumps in search of prey that it can turn to stone with its petrifying beak and subsequently consume piece by broken piece.
Cockatrices resemble gaunt and sickly roosters with bat wings and serpentine tails, and they rarely grow more than 2 feet tall and twice as long. Their absentminded clucking gives smart prey ample warning of their presence, and when angered cockatrices let out a shrill crow like that of a rooster. Their peck releases a magical toxin that causes flesh to quickly calcify, and any creature pecked repeatedly by an irritable cockatrice eventually transforms into a stone statue of itself.
This post may contain affiliate links which means that I may receive compensation at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase from a link found on my site.
Table of Contents
The first cockatrice is rumored to have hatched from a rooster’s egg incubated on a dung hill by a toad. Whether or not the rumor is true, the cockatrice’s monstrous appearance certainly doesn’t contradict its strange and filthy origin story, and these creatures are more than capable of propagating on their own. Cockatrices are remarkably fecund and gather in flocks of up to a dozen members.
Each flock contains only a few females. The males—which differ in appearance from the females by having warty wattles and gnarled combs— often fight with each other, with lower-ranking males eventually driven away to find their own lairs or compete among other flocks. Most creatures who run afoul of a solitary cockatrice do so with one of these surly outcasts.
Cockatrice lairs are often littered with fragments of statuary from past victims—although these are as likely to be remnants of frogs, lizards, and insects as people. Curiously, weasels and ferrets, who infiltrate cockatrice lairs to steal their eggs, are immune to the creatures’ petrifying bites. For unknown reasons, cockatrices are both terrified of and enraged by conventional roosters, and they are equally likely to flee or attack when confronted by one.
Over 50 Pages of RPG Ideas
Get adventures for 5 popular monsters for Pathfinder and D&D. Each one will have 10 adventure ideas like the ones on this page, but each comes with a longer adventure with a custom map, hook, plot, climax, and aftermath with named NPCs and items (if applicable).
Particularly brave (or foolhardy) individuals sometimes keep cockatrices as pets or guard animals. In their natural habitat among plains, forests, and sewers near humanoid settlements, cockatrices are content to live off vermin or scraps of waste, but their greatest pleasure is consuming warm meals of freshly petrified flesh.
The Cockatrice’s Egg
A wealthy collector of rare and magical creatures, Lord Thaddeus, has a unique request for the adventurers: he wants a cockatrice egg. He offers a handsome reward, but warns that the task will not be easy. Cockatrices are fiercely protective of their eggs, and their petrifying beak makes them a dangerous foe. The adventurers will need to locate a cockatrice nest, steal an egg without getting turned to stone, and return it to Lord Thaddeus. But they may also question the ethics of their task: is it right to take an egg from its mother for the sake of a collector’s curiosity?
Need more stats?
If you want the full stats of this creature, go here: https://2e.aonprd.com/Monsters.aspx?ID=83
The Cockatrice’s Victim
The adventurers find a man turned to stone on the side of the road, the victim of a cockatrice. A note in his pocket reveals that he was on a quest to slay the creature and save his village. The adventurers can choose to take up his quest, tracking the cockatrice through the wilderness and confronting it in its lair. Along the way, they may discover that the man had a personal reason for his quest, adding a layer of tragedy to their mission.
The Cockatrice’s Feast
The adventurers stumble upon a small village in the midst of a peculiar crisis: their food stores have been turned to stone. A cockatrice has been sneaking into the village at night, petrifying their food with its beak. The villagers are on the brink of starvation and need the adventurers to hunt down the cockatrice and put an end to its nightly feasts.
The Stone Menagerie
A renowned wizard, known for his collection of magical creatures, has lost control of his cockatrice. The creature has escaped into the wizard’s menagerie, turning various magical creatures to stone. The adventurers are tasked with subduing the cockatrice without harming the petrified creatures, a task that requires both combat skills and careful maneuvering.
Want all of our adventure ideas?
We are adding over 30 new adventure ideas like the ones you see above every week to our new membership program. Come see the hundreds we already have and growing.
Check it out here: https:/skullrpg.com/membership
*Required disclaimer: This post uses trademarks and/or copyrights owned by Paizo Inc., which are used under Paizo’s Community Use Policy. I am expressly prohibited from charging you to use or access this content. This post is not published, endorsed, or specifically approved by Paizo Inc. For more information about Paizo’s Community Use Policy, please visit http://paizo.com/communityuse. For more information about Paizo Inc. and Paizo products, please visit http://paizo.com.
About the Author:
Dwight Scull has been playing tabletop role-playing games (starting with Dungeons and Dragons 3.5) back in 2001. He started being a dungeon master around 2005.
He loves to play many different types of TTRPGs, including Pathfinder, GURPS, Shadowrun, Vampire: The Masquerade, Mage: The Ascension (and other White Wolf Games), Nights Black Agents, and others.
Fan of mysteries, light horror, co-op board games, true crime, sci-fi, and fantasy.