You can walk out of there with as many as 150 x 5-xp Mercenary Books, for a total of 750 mercenary XP -- valued at roughly 150,000 shillings if you were to spend shillings recruiting and discarding mercenaries for XP. Even more if you have a key to open the one locked chest, which contains bigger mercenary books and a possible box of random stat boost potions (I believe the person who used the key gets this box).
Many people don't know how to play this mini-game and end up getting killed, which requires someone to use a cardiotonic to revive them. I recommend you do not waste your cardiotonic. It generally requires Electrum to get and the stakes are no so high in this mini-game that you need to revive anyone.
Golden Hoard is a channeler's game since they can heal themselves, but even greedy high-level channelers get killed early. The game is actually simple if you are patient and not greedy. Also, prizes from a box are divided amongst the remaining players, so there is no real rush to grab loot.
The game is run in four rounds. In each round, once you kill all the golden aetherslugs, the bars will be removed from one of the side rooms, allowing you to get at the chests. You will know this when a message flashes across your screen indicating how many black aetherslugs will spawn when you open a chest.
How to Survive Golden Hoard
In the first round, typically there is just the one black aetherslug, so when you attack a gold aetherslug, chances are the black slug will not teleport to your location. After the first round, there will be plenty of black slugs to go around, so get used to moving immediately.
When a slug teleports to your location, you have just a couple of seconds to move out of its black aura. You will not take damage if you get clear quickly, but it will eat your health very quickly if you do not. So, MOVE. Don't worry about killing the gold slug -- Worry about your health.
- This is KEY to surviving Golden Hoard. Don't wait to get out -- start moving. Whenever I have done this, almost all the time I get clear without taking any damage at all.
How to Open Chests
When a chest is opened, about a second later black slugs will start teleporting in. If you are a Channeler with the Immortality power, you can open a chest, hit the power, open another chest, grab your loot, and run. Otherwise, just run and come back later.
I see too many people lingering for too long and they are suddenly killed by the slugs because there can be several black slugs stacked together even though it looks like there are just one or two. The sudden health drain wipes them out.
After round four, you must open both of the unlocked chests before the black slugs will disappear. Once you open those chests, the exit countdown begins and you have that time to collect all your loot from all locations, and decide if you want to open the locked chest.
Since keys are pretty hard to come by, I recommend you do not open that chest. Keys are harder to get than shillings, and that chest contains mercenary books with mercenary XP you can get with shillings; as well as a box of temporary stat bonuses that you may never use anyway. The potions can sell for 5000 shillings a piece, but that is still not worth a key you have to buy with Electrum.
Special Note about Channelers
If you are a channeler, go in with all heals and Immortality. Try to save Rebounding Heal and Healing Burst to help your teammates, especially if they are Company members.
If you need healing, run TO a channeler because the range of those healing spells is limited and they have to stop moving to cast them. Also, don't expect them to stop when there are black slugs around since they'd get damaged as well. In the worst case, get on your motorcycle or jetpack and keep moving to keep clear until you can get your health back up with potions.