What is the strange ox in Baldur's Gate 3?

Baldur's Gate 3 strange ox
(Image credit: Larian Studios)
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Early on in Baldur's Gate 3's main story, you'll come across a strange ox at the Emerald Grove but there seems to be something a little off with it. For a start, it's smaller than the other two it's standing next to, and you'll notice you and your companions passively run perception checks once they get into range.

If you've been waiting for Baldur's Gate 3 to come out of early access so you can jump in and explore the Forgotten Realms, you might find it all a little overwhelming. This is especially true if it's your first Larian RPG, but these Baldur's Gate 3 tips should help set you on the right path. In the meantime, if you're keen to learn what we know about the Baldur's Gate 3 strange ox, read on.

Baldur's Gate 3 strange ox 

The strange ox is something of a mystery in Baldur's Gate 3. You're likely to come across it after you've defeated the goblins attacking the Emerald Grove. You probably wouldn't look twice at the three unassuming cows standing off to the side of the track, except it's hard to miss the perception checks that happen as you move past them.

At this point, you'll want to cast the Speak with Animals spell or use a scroll. Approach the ox, and he'll say it's quaint that you're addressing him, showing that he is obviously not just a regular ox. You'll then be able to choose from the following options:

  • [Arcana] The ox makes you uneasy. Try to discern why.
  • A fine-looking beast you are.
  • Ugh. Hideous cow.
  • Leave.

You'll get the first option if you have high enough Arcana or can talk to animals. You'll need to win an Arcana roll check, then you can either ask him to explain what's going on, or that he can keep his secrets. If you ask him to explain, he'll say no, but you'll then get the option to roll a Persuasion, Intimidation or Deception check to get a further response. 

You should choose Persuasion—if you're successful, he'll tell you that he's off to Baldur's Gate "with or without the rest of these poor sods", which I assume means the tieflings.

There's currently nothing else to be gained from the strange ox, though considering it's heading to Baldur's Gate, it might pop up again later in the story. You can inspect the ox, and you'll also notice that it is classified as a beast but it does have both Blindsight and Darkvision passives, which seems a little odd. 

Of course, if you're an absolute monster, you can choose to kill the ox to gain a Shapeshifter's Boon Ring, which grants a 1d4 bonus to all checks when Shapeshifted or Disguised.  Just be warned: killing him triggers an acid explosion which dealt a whopping 31 damage to my player character, so kill him with ranged attacks only.

Sarah James
Guides Writer

Sarah started as a freelance writer in 2018, writing for PCGamesN, TechRadar, GamingBible, Red Bull Gaming and more. In 2021, she was offered a full-time position on the PC Gamer team where she takes every possible opportunity to talk about World of Warcraft and Elden Ring. When not writing guides, most of her spare time is spent in Azeroth—though she's quite partial to JRPGs too. One of her fondest hopes is to one day play through the ending of Final Fantasy X without breaking down into a sobbing heap. She probably has more wolves in Valheim than you.

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