Running a cult isn’t as easy as it looks. People might hang on to your every word, but they might start questioning you if your doomsday prediction doesn’t come true or if you let them starve. Hungry people don’t worship all that well. In Cult of the Lamb, it can be a lot of trial and error, but if you’d like to avoid all those awful dissenters and outbreaks of disease, then we’ve got a few tips for you to follow.
Sermonize as often as possible
Want to pump yourself up for the dungeons? The most important way is gathering faith. You can do this in a few ways including rituals and sacrifice, but the easiest and most reliable way is to just deliver sermons.
You’ll be guided through delivering sermons in the tutorial, but if you’ve forgotten, just go to the altar in the temple and choose the option. You can deliver them once a day, and there’s no downside to doing it. However, if you’re going to do any rituals that lower faith that day, it might be best to sermonize afterward to get it back up.
Doors are unlocked with followers, not progress
At first, you can only go through the door to Darkwood, but you don’t have to eliminate Leshy to move on to the next one. You merely need to recruit seven followers to bust open the gateway to Anura.
There are a few reasons why you’d want to visit another area before completing the one you’re on. First, you gain additional resources and meet new NPCs that can give you the upper hand in other areas. Secondly, if you’re struggling to beat a boss in one area, there’s nothing wrong with clearing out the easier levels of another. Just remember; you can unlock all the doors without felling a single boss if you want to. There’s no need to just beat your head against the same wall.
Sacrificing followers is an option, not a requirement
The One Who Waits is pretty gung-ho about you slinging a sacrificial dagger around, but just know that it’s not a necessity to slay your followers for making the mistake of trusting you. While Cult of the Lamb coyly says that it’s a way to power up and gain new weapons, it’s really just saying it gives you a lot of faith. You can get faith in other ways like, say, sermonizing or throwing rituals.
It may be a fast track to the top of your upgrades, but chances are you’ll hit that naturally long before you’re ready to throw down against the end boss. Of course, don’t let that get in the way of fun. If you just want to see the look of horror on the face of your followers as their dragged down into the void, then you do you.
Don’t leave your flock for long
It takes a special kind of person to join a cult, and it’s the type of person who doesn’t know better than to eat poop. There’s no babysitter in Cult of the Lamb, and neither is there a cook. Your flock will die without your guiding hand. If you abandon them for too long as you gallivant around dungeons, they’ll gradually lose faith, grow hungry, and probably drown in their own excrement. That last one can be solved with a janitor shack, but the other two require your intervention.
If you let a flock go hungry for too long, they’ll start to die off. You can top off their stomachs before leaving and maybe drop some extra food on the floor, but eventually, you’ll have to return to make sure they get breakfast.
There are a few commandments you can whip out to help your followers stay faithful while you’re away, but it’s a foregone conclusion that if you leave them alone for too long, they’ll start questioning if you really are the messiah. Once your faith drops past a certain point, some of your followers might turn to dissenters, and that can be a slippery slope as they try to turn the rest of your flock against you.
Clean up after your flock
Does a fox poop in the woods? Yes, and they don’t know how to clean up after themselves. You may be the wearer of the red crown, but that doesn’t save you from chores. At the beginning of the game, your flock will have no choice but to poop behind a bush and puke where they stand. You’ll eventually get the ability to plop down bathrooms, but until you can build a janitor shack, you’ll have to clean those too.
If you don’t, your followers are going to get sick. They’ll start pooping and puking everywhere, and that just adds to the issue. Too much vomit and poop everywhere increases the chance that your followers are going to fall ill, so I’m sure you can see why you have to swallow your pride and pick up your poop.
Send sick followers to bed
If your followers do get sick, don’t let them just wander around spreading it to others. As soon as you see someone get that germ icon above their head, you’ll want to talk to them and command them to stay in bed. Note that it takes a while before they’re well again. Later in the game, you’ll unlock healing bays where you can spend camellia flowers to heal them instantly, but in the meantime, they need to be quarantined.
Only use bones when you have to
When you only have a few rituals on hand, it’s pretty easy to fall into the mindset that you’ll never run out of bones. They’re dropped by dead enemies, and when you don’t have much to spend them on, they can pile up.
However, later on, when there are a lot of helpful rituals, you’ll be wanting as many bones as you can get your hands on. Consider what you’re spending them on. The Bonfire Ritual, for example, simply raises your faith, so don’t use it if you can use a sermon or commandment to top up your faith meter. They’re better spent on something like the feast ritual, which not only raises faith but also fills their bellies.
Build a prison (or two) for dissidents
Dissidents are jerks who are questioning your awesome teachings. They wander around trying to get other cult members to listen to them, reducing faith all around. If you’re ruthless, you can just sacrifice or murder them (if those options are unlocked), but it might be best just to re-educate their stupid brains. While this is possible while they’re ranting their blasphemy, the best way to keep them away from the flock and also get them back to normal faster is to build a prison and send them there. Re-education works faster when a follower is in the stocks than it does when you’re just arguing with them in public.
For more on the breakout indie, check out our glowing Cult of the Lamb review.
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