A holy relic is an item used as a non-consumed component in a few different rituals. A holy relic must be consecrated to one's own deity to be usable for rituals.
Shattering relics is also a popular way to quickly change one's alignment.
There are two basic types of relics: shop relics and charged prayer beads.
Shop relics are the ones you can buy in various temple shops (all or most temple shops sell them at least part of the time, for &&&&&&&&&&&+6000 or the local equivilent). Npc priests who carry relics also have this type. They are all items associated with specific (fictional) priests and priestesses, preserved in some fashion, and they have widely varying appearances and attached stories. They are highly deity-specific and cannot be reconsecrated. They are also fragile, and can be shattered. Warning: A relic carried by an NPC priest may be warded and deal around 800 hit-points damage when taken from their corpse.
Prayer beads, on the other hand, become holy relics after they've been charged a certain amount. They can be used in rituals that require relics, but can't be shattered. While they can be reconsecrated, this removes the charge completely, turning them into uncharged beads (which aren't relics yet).
The following rituals require a holy relic:
Shattering a shatterable holy relic affects your alignment, but how it affects your alignment depends on the relic you're shattering and the diety you follow.
If the deity whose relic you're shattering is more evil than your own, shattering their relic will make you more good, if it changes your alignment at all. Hence, a Pishite shattering a Gufnorkian relic can become more good--in fact, Pishites can become more good by shattering any non-Pishite relics, as all six other worshippable gods are more evil (or at least, less good) than Pishe.
On the other hand, if the deity whose relic you're shattering is more good than your own, shattering their relic will make you more evil, if it changes your alignment at all. Hence, a Sekkite shattering a Hattite relic can become more evil.
This only seems to have an effect if shattering the relic will move you towards your ideal alignment. So, if you're a follower of Fish (who likes his followers to be neutral or barely evil), and you're good, you won't become even more good by shattering a Sekkite relic--your alignment will remain unchanged. However, you could become less good by shattering a Pishite, Gufnorkian, Gappic, or Sandelfonian relic. You can still be taken past your ideal alignment by shattering a relic, though. For example, the same Fishite could be 1 degree good, shatter a Pishe relic, and be brought all the way up to 3 degrees evil, which is more evil than Fish prefers.
The amount that your alignment changes from shattering a relic depends on the deity whose relic it is, although there's a random factor:
- Pishe relics: move you about 3-5 degrees, around 4 degrees on average.
- Gufnork relics: move you about 2 degrees.
- Gapp relics: move you about 1-2 degrees.
- Sandelfon relics: move you about half a degree on average.
- Fish relics: move you about a degree (maybe a little less).
- Hat relics: move you about 1-3 degrees, around 2 degrees on average.
- Sek relics: move you about 2-5 degrees, around 3 degrees on average.
One thing you should avoid is shattering a relic of your own deity, as this will make them angry with you and you'll be unable to perform rituals for a time.
- The message indicates that you don't feel any faith entering you.