Ancient shrine

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Ancient shrine pre-1.1

Ancient shrines, commonly referred to as ancient dangers due to the event card, are large structures that spawn on the map upon generation. They take the form of a massive, unexplored room. though they may be damaged somehow after map generation. If they spawn damaged, they are most likely ruins.

Having a colonist walk by the walls of the structure will trigger an Ancient danger event prompting:

"As (Colonist Name) draws near the ancient wall a sense of foreboding overcomes him. (S)He isn't sure why, but (s)he feels this dusty structure may contain great dangers"


Ancient shrines are large rooms of stone or steel walls. In contrast to ruins, the walls of the shrine always begin undamaged and in perfect condition. Ancient shrines generate either partially or completely under natural rock formations. Ancient shrines are not guaranteed to spawn on small or medium maps, but will always spawn on larger map sizes. Two or more may spawn of one of the largest map sizes.

There are two components to the shrine's "danger":

  • A non-human threat immediately revealed when opening the shrine. This can be either mechanoids, insectoids with their requisite bug hives, or even a few fleshbeasts if the Anomaly DLC is installed. Beware - even centipedes can appear in an ancient shrine.
  • The beings inside the ancient cryptosleep caskets. They are not always hostile. This can contain a human, a human and a megascarab, a group of megascarabs, or nothing. Humans will belong to one of two Ancients factions; one faction is hostile, the other faction starts off neutral. Megascarabs are always non-hostile. Opening 1 ancient cryptosleep casket will open all the caskets. Humans may spawn downed or as corpses.

Due to being fully enclosed, one cannot see within the shrine, and hovering over the grayed out area as seen in the picture will only say 'Undiscovered' in the bottom left corner. The only way to find out what is inside is to deconstruct or destroy a wall section.

There are many rewards within the ancient shrine. It can contain artifacts such as psychic animal pulsers or psychic insanity lances, and valuable items like luciferium are common. Ancients often carry plasteel, gold, and advanced components; even their corpses carry loot. Ancients can spawn with synthread and hyperweave clothing, power armor, high quality weaponry, or may be naked.

In addition to the loot, ancient shrines will contain ancient cryptosleep caskets, tables of different sizes, columns, and/or urns. Their floors are generally made out of flagstone, steel tile, or stone tile. These can all be deconstructed.


Dealing with the danger[edit]

A spike trap tunnel, likely able to kill anything short of centipedes.
Build the traps first, then the walls.

When opening the ancient shrine, it is recommended to not deconstruct the wall, but to destroy it with ranged weaponry. This gives you some distance to deal with scythers and other threats. Make sure to keep colonists drafted, or toggle their threat response from Attack to Flee.

The spike trap tunnel on the right is likely to take out scythers, lancers, and megaspiders that inhabit the shrine. For centipedes, it is recommended to have a bolt-action rifle or sniper rifle on hand and kite the centipedes.

If a trade caravan happens to spawn near the ancient danger, you can open it. Caravans likely have enough firepower to clear the entire danger, or at least, severely weaken it. In a similar fashion, shooting an ancient cryptosleep casket will unleash its ancients - mechs, insects, and ancients should all fight each other.

Dealing with ancients[edit]

"Ancient soldiers" have shockingly little resistance, so long as they are captured (and not rescued first).

The shrine itself contains a lot of loot, but so does its ancients. Even if the ancients are neutral, it is worthwhile to capture or kill them for assault weaponry, armor, and materials. If a stray bullet doesn't hit the cryptosleep caskets, they should remain closed, even after renovating the rest of the danger.

If captured, ancient soldiers have incredibly low resistance, making them very quick recruits.

  • Using fire

By using fire, you can attack ancients without a gunfight.

First, enclose the shrine with a door, so that it is "Inside" for temperature purposes. Place some fuel and raise the temperature up high. Contiously throw molotov cocktails or other flame weapons until the room hits at least 200 °C (392 °F). Then shoot the cryptosleep caskets. Both hostile and friendly units will be downed through heatstroke, avoiding the usual death on down chance.

The ancient cryptosleep caskets will be at risk of destruction, which can kill ancients and damage gear. But they have quite a bit of health, so you can extinguish important items and capture important pawns before that happens.

Note that pawns that are downed by heatstroke are subject to the death on down chance, so this cannot be used to easily capture prisoners.

Loot table[edit]

The following loot can be found scattered on the floor of an ancient shrine. The percentage relates to the chance that the loot in question will occur in a given ancient shrine. For stackable items, it is currently unclear how the size of the stack to be spawned is generated.[Detail Needed]

Item Chance per shrine
Core-only Royalty DLC Ideology DLC Royalty + Ideology
Psychic soothe pulser 47% ? ? 45%
Psychic animal pulser 46% ? ? 44%
Advanced component 39% ? ? 35%
Luciferium 36% ? ? 39%
Glitterworld medicine 34% ? ? 37%
Resurrector mech serum 2.4% ? ? 0.6%
Joywire 2.2% ? ? 1.8%
Painstopper 2.2% ? ? 1%
Bionic spine 2% ? ? 1.2%
Skilltrainer (Artistic) 2% ? ? 1.4%
Skilltrainer (Cooking) 1.8% ? ? -
Skilltrainer (Intellectual) 1.8% ? ? 1.4%
Bionic eye 1.6% ? ? 1%
Bionic leg 1.6% ? ? 1%
Marine helmet 1.6% ? ? 1.6%
Doomsday rocket launcher 1.6% ? ? 1%
Orbital bombardment targeter 1.6% ? ? 2.6%
Skilltrainer (Construction) 1.6% ? ? 0.8%
Skilltrainer (Crafting) 1.6% ? ? 2%
Grand sculpture 1.4% ? ? 1%
Healer mech serum 1.4% ? ? 0.4%
Marine armor 1.4% ? ? 1.4%
Assault rifle 1.4% ? ? 1.8%
Skilltrainer (Medical) 1.4% ? ? 1.6%
Bionic heart 1.2% ? ? 2%
Techprof subpersona core 1.2% ? ? 0.4%
Antigrain warhead 1.2% ? ? 1.2%
Charge rifle 1.2% ? ? 1.2%
Archotech arm 1% ? ? 0.6%
Power claw 1% ? ? 0.8%
Megascreen television 1% ? ? 1.4%
Charge lance 1% ? ? 1%
Orbital power beam targeter 1% ? ? 1.2%
Skilltrainer (Animals) 1% ? ? 1.6%
Archotech eye 0.8% ? ? 1.4%
Archotech leg 0.8% ? ? 1.2%
Bionic arm 0.8% ? ? 1.2%
Flatscreen television 0.8% ? ? 0.4%
Skilltrainer (Shooting) 0.8% ? ? 1.4%
Skilltrainer (Melee) 0.8% ? ? 1.2%
Skilltrainer (Social) 0.8% ? ? 0.4%
Triple rocket launcher 0.6% ? ? 0.8%
Tornado generator 0.6% ? ? 0.8%
Skilltrainer (Plants) 0.6% ? ? 1.6%
Skilltrainer (Mining) 0.4% ? ? 1.8%
Techprint (Skin hardening) - ? - 5.6%
Techprint (Cataphract armor) - ? - 4.6%
Techprint (Jump packs) - ? - 5.6%
Techprint (Neural computation) - ? - 4.2%
Techprint (Brain wiring) - ? - 3.8%
Techprint (Molecular analysis) - ? - 3.8%
Techprint (Specialized limbs) - ? - 3.6%
Techprint (Artificial metabolism) - ? - 3.6%
Techprint (Compact weaponry) - ? - 3.4%
Techprint (Flesh shaping) - ? - 3.4%
Techprint (Poison synthesis) - ? - 3.2%
Techprint (Circadian influence) - ? - 3%
Techprint (Healing factors) - ? - 2.2%
Orbital mech cluster targeter - ? - 1%

Ruined objects and crates[edit]

Ruined objects and crates like hermetic crates and security crates may spawn inside the ancient shrine. While the ruined objects will yield nothing upon destruction whether through combat or deconstruction, the crates will yield loot when opened, ranging from hyperweave to rarely thrumbo horn, and also includes some Royalty DLC items such as techprints, if the DLC is also enabled. The crates yield nothing when demolished as well.

Version history[edit]

  • 0.8.657 - Added
  • 0.12.906 - Artifacts now found inside.
  • 1.1 - generation was reworked to improve their structural style. Prior to that, they were merely a room built out of stone.
  • 1.3.3066 - Ancient dangers will no longer be generated with hostile mechs in peaceful mode.