Exploration of a shrine can be a source of a great wealth and even greater disasters. In shrines the party may find golden items worth a lot of fame and funds, but beware; stealing from a shrine can also cause great disasters and may halt or even set your expedition in peril. Looting a shrine always reduces the party's standing in a region by -3.
The description of the shrine, visible before entering inside, usually includes hints (in red) about what kind of a disaster awaits the looters. Some of the possible catastrophes include:
- If the ground is hot to tread upon and there is heat in the ambience, volcanoes will erupt around the shrine, after someone steals the treasures inside, setting nearby forests on fire (fire costs 5 sanity walking through).
- If the ground is wet, and the shrine is partially submerged in water, stealing from it will cause the place, and many surrounding hexes, to crumble and be swallowed by a spreading waves of water, forming a new lake, destroying much of the terrain and cutting some of the ways for the expedition to travel.
- If the shrine is initially covered in sand, looting it will cause a drastic change of climate in the great radius around it, turning all the previously present tiles into deserts.
- If there are visible cracks on the structure of the shrine, stealing it's treasures will cause either the mountains to grow from the flat lands around the shrine, drastically changing the topography of the region.
- If there are a circle drawn in blood and spears planted into the ground, robbing the sanctuary will cause either the whole place, and the surrounding tiles, to be swallowed by an endless pit, cutting off ways through that region and possibly destroying the expedition entirely.
- If the shadows are longer and darker than usual, after looting the temple if your group is full one of your companions will be bit and later he will transform into an abomination. However, if your expedition still has a space for one member more, an abomination will appear and the player will have the decision to kill it or to invite it to the group.
- If there is a fungal growth over the shrine, several corrupted spider lairs will spawn around the shrine. The corruption will spread outward from the lairs and will spawn giant spiders.
- If there are animal tracks on the ground, a group of wild beasts will attack the trek if they loot the shrine.
- If there are celestial symbols of the moon, the sun and the stars, taking the loot from the shrine will cause the emergence of the void, a large and impenetrable darkness that swallows everything and never stops growing.
- If there are heads on sticks, all villages (and polar stations, and possibly missions too?) will be empty (and unusable) afterwards.
- If the structure looks slightly tilted and subsiding, although the ground seems stable enough, a chasm will develop
- A group of angry natives may persecute the expedition if the temple is looted.
Exploring a shrine will not cost any standing with the local natives, but taking any items from inside does (-3).
Artists visiting the shrine can paint a picture of it, without fear of any negative repercussions.
Be extra careful when releasing the void from celestial temples. The void will consume everything, so if there is a seal trapped around void tiles and the void is blocking you from the ocean, the only solution will be to abandon the expedition via ship or hot air balloon.