The Crimson Cult is Moderate forbidden knowledge research.
A cult of mysterious Crimson Clerics and Crimson Knights. They appear around some Eldritch Obelisks, and in the Outer Lands they can emerge in force from a Crimson Portal boss. (The portal can also spawn a Crimson Praetor miniboss.) They wear void robes (clerics) or medieval Templar-style armor (knights), both tinted red. Occasionally knights will spawn without a helmet, revealing a tortured Steve-face with bleeding eyes.
Some eldritch obelisks will spawn with a contingent of Crimson Clerics around them. These will float above the ground, channeling a thin line of black energy into the obelisk's dark node. While they do this, Crimson Knights will steadily spawn around them.
Crimson Knights will target players near the obelisk. Attacking Crimson Knights will cause nearby Crimson Clerics to become aggressive too and stop channeling. (Not all clerics necessarily have to become aggressive due to a single Knight attack.)
When there are no longer any clerics in the vicinity of the obelisk, the obelisk will stop spawning knights. A cleric that is not channeling or even an aggravated cleric will still cause the obelisk to spawn knights, provided it is in the vicinity. However, any non-channeling cleric is vulnerable to despawning like other hostile mobs, and they are also vulnerable to wandering too far away from the obelisk. In either of these situations, if the cleric is the only one left, there will be no more Knights and the player must find a new obelisk to continue farming them. This can be prevented by using a Name Tag on the cleric and walling it in, which is helpful in case it is accidentally aggravated. Note that walling it in requires an Invisibility potion and no armor (armor will make the cultists see the player), and of course it must be done before the cleric is aggravated.
Turning the difficulty on Peaceful will despawn all Clerics, regardless of channeling status or Name Tag status. As such, the player should never turn the difficulty onto Peaceful while the obelisk is loaded into memory.
Cultists can drop a variety of rare or unique items:
- Gold coins, Knowledge Fragments, a Void Seed, or even a Void Sword. Rarely you might get a crimson sword with Warping II and "greater life steal" (it steals the life of enemies you attack).
- Pieces from either of two sets of Crimson Cult armor: Clerics drop Hood, Robe, Leggings, knights drop Helm, Chestplate, Greaves, and either can drop Boots. All of these will have the Warping effect, and Cleric armor also offers a 1% vis discount. Both sets of crimson armor have a total of 7.5 protection points, making them equivalent to iron armor. Note that the crimson boots are part of both kits.
- The prized and mysterious Crimson Rites book, used to learn the Cult's secrets for opening the gate.
- While not a drop, obelisks with cultists will also have the Crimson Cult's banners placed around the Obelisk, showing mysterious gold symbols above pixelated writing. Once the player scans a banner, they will learn how to produce their own banners, which they can mark with aspect symbols.
Around an obelisk, both Clerics and Knights tend not to aggro until the player approaches the obelisk itself, rather than the mobs. It can be tricky to kite knights away from the area without aggroing the clerics.*
Crimson Clerics have 34 health (17 Hearts) and attack with several sorts of magical missiles. They seem to be dressed in red void robes, obscuring their face.
Crimson clerics can do 2 hearts of melee damage to unarmored foes, but also fire three kinds of spells:
- Fireballs which explode doing 2.5 hearts of damage and also set their target on fire.
- Warp-inflicting balls of dark energy which give temporary warp.
- Huge balls of red energy surrounded by an electricity particle effect. These home in on a target and explode upon impact, dealing over 5 hearts of damage. Crimson Clerics will help other clerics being attacked like wolves.
Crimson knights have 40 health (20 Hearts) and wield iron swords. The crimson knights do 5 hearts of damage to an unarmored foe. If any crimson knight is attacked, all nearby knights will assist them. Clerics may or may not go and help - while it is possible to hit a knight and still have a cleric beaming, in general it's a really risky move and it's not recommended.
Any attacks made by Clerics that hit another Cleric or Knight will make them hostile to that Cleric. Knights have a tendency not to engage with Clerics when attacked, however, especially if they are concentrating on the player.
Any building near the obelisk (e.g. to turn it into a farm) should be done with an Invisibility effect and no armor on. As long as the player is not standing on the same block as a knight, this will prevent the cultists from seeing them.
*This is generally how close you can get to the Obelisk
- DON'T engage the Clerics. They are limited and also quite hard to fight, and you are probably going to end up aggravating all of the clerics from collateral attack damage if they aren't already aggravated. If you want to kill Clerics for their drops wait until the Crimson Portal boss in the Outer Lands.
- As stated above, use a name tag on a cleric and wall as many as possible in. This way should they be accidentally aggravated they won't despawn or wander too far from the obelisk (because they're walled in). Don't wear armor because it makes you more visible, and try to stay above the ground. A wall that encapsulates the entire obelisk should be fine - although knights in there may be unreachable it's always better safe than sorry.
- If you get close enough to the knights they will attack you but the clerics will remain peaceful. Use this to lure them as far away as possible.
- It may be best to experiment on an obelisk in a world with Creative Mode/cheats enabled first to see how far away you need to lure them, or how much of a wall you can build.
- If you have a mod that adds customizable portals to other dimensions or far-off locations (e.g. Mystcraft), using such portals is recommended because if the original obelisk isn't nearby whatsoever you can kill a Knight without any risk. In fact, transporting Knights to other dimensions seems to make them wander aimlessly, looking for an obelisk that doesn't exist, and not retaliate even if you hit them (the only caveat is that they will continually walk in different directions so you have to cage them in).