RimWorld Pollution Explained

Pollution can transform terrain for better or worse.
Pollution can transform terrain for better or worse. / Ludeon Studios

RimWorld's 1.4 update, which comes in the form of the Biotech expansion, adds three new mechanoid commanders players can defeat to gain access to their mechanoid chips. These, in turn, unlock mechanoid research, and allow players to create ever more powerful mechanitors. But there is a drawback to all that progress: pollution. Here's what you need to know about this new in-game hazard.

RimWorld Pollution Sources

Every time a player builds or recharges a mechanoid, they'll create a toxic wastepack. If these wastepacks are frozen, they will remain inert. But left unfrozen, they'll degrade and start to pollute terrain. They can also explode into poison gas if they get too near open flame, or are otherwise damaged.

Toxifier generators also create pollution, the main drawback to their otherwise cheap and reliable power generation.

RimWorld Pollution Dangers

Pollution will make most any living thing sick. It can poison colonists and animals, building up toxins in their bodies that can cause vomiting, dementia, carcinomas and, worst of all, death. Pollution will also kill plants, and, over time attract toxin-adapted plants and animals.

As pollution grows, it will give rise to dangerous weather phenomenon. Those include acidic smog that hurts colonists' eyes, blocks the sun and slows plant growth, and corrode exposed items.

How to Reduce Pollution in RimWorld

Colonists can take a variety of tacks to address pollution. First they'll have to clean up polluted terrain, transforming the pollution into wastepacks. That process can also be automated, but if colonists themselves are doing the work, they'll want to equip gas masks or other protective gear.

Once the pollution has been made into wastepacks, those wastepacks can be frozen, exported, atomized or purified using polux trees. The last two options are the most permanent solutions, but they're also time-consuming, finicky and expensive.

For more details on pollution, check out Ludeon's blog post on the topic.