On September 15, 2010, Jagex released a news story on their website about z-buffering, a new feature that is going to allow them to introduce many new graphical updates to the game. One of the largest advantages of z-buffering is that players are able to exist outside of their own individual squares, making combat and other animations much more realistic and appealing. With this z-buffering update, however, arrived an odd, unexpected, and random side effect. The wilderness ditch, once used to separate the mainland from the wilderness to help new players distinguish between the two and save their lives, became “unsightly” and was therefore turned into a wall. This wall was supposed to have the exact same properties as the ditch, with the only difference being the appearance. When players crossed it, it was supposed to take the exact same amount of time, and the wall was aligned at the exact same spot the ditch once was. Any normal player would have believed Jagex, but a large community soon realized otherwise, and felt the negative repercussions very quickly. The day after the update, interesting videos quickly surfaced on YouTube that showed Jagex Moderators surrounded by large crowds of people by the newly designed wilderness wall near the Grand Exchange. But it wasn’t just a fan club – there was something peculiar going on. These Jagex Moderators were standing there with a purpose. It is unknown if they planned for this to happen or simply found out by chance, but regardless, it was working. “There’s another one! There’s another one!” screamed the audience as the Jagex Moderator took action. After a few seconds, a player disappeared into thin air. “There’s another one!” they shouted again, and the processes repeated over and over. What exactly was happening? Why were people disappearing? The answer is simple – the Jagex Moderators were banning players. There are some very stupid people in this world. Some of these people are stupid enough to set their RuneScape bots running overnight so they can wake up the next morning and see their higher stats and nice pile of coins. Seeing as botting is against the RuneScape Terms of Service and in-game rules, you would think that these people would be more careful about using bots – maybe by watching their bots run in csae something bad happens. But many of those dumb enough to still use bots even after Jagex is apparently “cracking down” are also dumb enough not to consider that. A very popular bot for killing Green Dragons in the wilderness and looting them to make lots of money was coded such that it was specifically designed to cross a wilderness ditch, not a wilderness wall. After the update, the bot didn’t know what to do when it reached the wilderness wall, so it just stood there. This bot banked the loot in either the Grand Exchange of the Edgeville bank, which was why it was stuck near the corner of the Grand Exchange. After Jagex Moderators found out this was happening, they quickly arrived at the scene and waited for more people to show up at the corner. At that point, they would talk for a while to see if the stuck players would respond. After several more minutes of idling, the stuck players would be banned, as the Jagex Moderators would then be able to conclude that the stuck player was a bot using the Green Dragon killing script. This is a pretty clever method of finding botters – finding a script that bugs up after a particular update, then capitalizing by banning all players that are using the script at the time. Something similar to this happened earlier on in the year when Jagex released a games update. A man that sold game items was created in Al Kharid; his products helped clans and other groups of people play games using in-game items that you might use to play games in real life. One of these new items was a race marker, used to set a destination or boundary for a race. Someone decided to set one up in Aubury’s Rune Shop in Varrock one day, and discovered something quite interesting. After the marker was set up, a majority of the people in the shop froze in place. A majority of the people that entered the shop froze in place and never left. It was like Aubury’s shop turned into a black hole of movement. Upon removing the race marker, everyone in the shop suddenly spurred into action and teleported to the Rune Essence mine via Aubury. This race coordinator had discovered a bug in a Rune Essence mining script by pure chance. The news quickly spread, and for a while, this method was used to scout out Rune Essence botters. Except for instances like these, I haven’t heard many stories about people getting banned on RuneScape for botting. Once in a while, I get news about someone getting banned because they botted too excessively, but “too excessively” is generally about 20 hours per day. Anyone with a brain would know not to bot for 20 hours a day, because to my knowledge, there isn’t anyone that plays games for 20 hours and spend the remaining 4 hours sleeping and working enough to survive. A recurring theme throughout the past several years from Jagex is that they’re working on ways to fix the botting problem. They assure players that those who play fair will end up being rewarded after all, and those who cheat will be removed from the game. Jagex claims to have developed technologies far superior than those of the botting community. Unfortunately, this appears to be a bluff. The only times Jagex publishes an article warning people of botting and claiming to have banned thousands of players is after an update that could have bugged up bots. These advanced technologies they use to detect bots don’t appear to be working very well, and so far, the only confident bans appear to be those made by Jagex Moderators appearing on the scene of the bot and verifying their absence from the computer. Does this mean that bots are ultimately going to take over the game? Is Jagex rapidly losing the fight to people that are beating them at their own game? It seems like a very simple way to combat more botters is to make more meaningful back-end changes every time the game is updated, such as tweaking the code for how particular actions are done so the bots are either confused or utterly broken. But why hasn’t Jagex done this already? It appears to be a simple fix. Have they finally realized that by removing all the bots from the game, the RuneScape economy will be flipped upside-down so badly that nobody will know what’s going on?
A few days ago, Jagex released a news story on the RuneScape home page regarding a game bar. Upon skimming over the full story, I realized that this game bar was actually a RuneScape toolbar for your browser. I like keeping my Firefox as simple and clean as possible, so I didn’t install the game bar, but I made an assumption about this game bar after I saw that it contains information about the Grand Exchange. This assumption may be completely wrong, and I may be theorizing about something that is completely irrelevant to what the game bar actually is or has, but I thought I would write about it regardless because it involves a fight that Jagex has been a part of ever since they released RuneScape Classic – the fight against cheaters. UPDATE: As I expected, the game bar does not have anything to do with what I originally thought was a feature I thought the game bar provided. What I saw as the toolbar notifying players of Grand Exchange updates was misinterpreted. I thought the update was when the prices for the Grand Exchange items were updated, but it was actually when the player’s offers on the Grand Exchange updated. Nevertheless, I’m leaving this article here because it does cover topic that has brought concerns to RuneScape players for a long time. On a day like any other on RuneScape, I decided to clean out and organize my bank so I could get some coins and experience out of the random items sitting and rotting in tabs that I never opened. I came across a handful of jugs of water, and I decided to go to the Grand Exchange to buy some grapes so I could make jugs of wine, getting me cooking experience and a future food source for Thieving. I took out a couple thousand coins from my bank for my transaction, but when I typed “grapes” into the search field, I got an unpleasant surprise. The last time I had checked, grapes were only a couple hundred coins each, but now they were almost 600 coins each. Wondering how this happened, I went on the RuneScape Grand Exchange item information search engine to find out the past pricing trends of Grapes. I noticed that the 300%+ hike in cost was not a long-term change, but actually happened in a matter of a few weeks. While accessing my bank to withdraw more coins, I asked to nobody in particular, “Why are grapes so expensive now?” After a few seconds, I got my answer – merchanting clans. For those who don’t know, merchanting clans are groups of people that attempt to (and sometimes succeed in) manipulating the costs of particular target items. They are the prime example of “buy low, sell high” – everyone in the clan buys the item at a low price, then when the demand increases and price increases, they sell the item at a high price. Many players are annoyed that this is happening in the first place, because they believe that it is unfair for the other unrelated people who have to pay higher prices for the items they need because of the merchanting clan. However, I think it’s completely fine, as these clans are applying real-world strategies to a game they’re playing. The problem is not what they’re doing, but how they’re doing it. Merchanting clans tell their members to buy a specific item in the Grand Exchange as much as possible with the money they have. This increase in demand will cause the price of the item to go up. The clan leader then tells everyone to dump the particular item back into the market when it reaches a particular price, making it seem fair to everyone. However, these clan leaders make sure that their items will sell regardless of how many others of the same type are released back into the Grand Exchange. They don’t wait for the target price; instead, they sell theirs a little early. But sometimes, selling just a little bit early isn’t enough for the clan leaders to make a good profit. A lot of people realize that if they really wait for the target price, their chances of selling their items will become lower and lower. Thus, as the price approaches the tipping point, every second counts. This is where third-party software comes in. We’ve all heard of bots that train stats or farm gold for you, but what about bots that wait in the Grand Exchange for you? The RuneScape Grand Exchange updates at a random time within a time range every day. The system is organized such that the first people to submit their offers get them fulfilled first, and all remaining offers are fulfilled in the order in which they received. As a result, it’s important for these clan leaders to get their offers in right as the Grand Exchange prices update. Of course, merchanting clan leaders aren’t the only people that use these Grand Exchange camping bots. Other players, such as those interested in purchasing rare items, also use Grand Exchange bots, as it’s rare for any rare items to enter the Grand Exchange on a daily basis, and the first one to place the offer will get the item first. If Jagex were able to detect these bots, they would theoretically be banned for breaking the No Third-Party Software rule, but it’s nearly impossible to prove that they were using a bot, and not staying in front of their computer, waiting for the prices to update. Instead of trying to beat the botters, it appears as if Jagex has attempted to join them, and is inviting the rest of the RuneScape players to join them too. Instead of having to use botting software, it is possible that this game bar now as the option to notify you when the Grand Exchange has updated. Instead of wasting resources trying to fight something that gives an unfair advantage to particular people, just let everyone else have that advantage too, making it commonplace and no longer an unfair advantage. Of course, there will still be people in time zones that are asleep when the Grand Exchange prices update, but I’m assuming that Jagex is hoping that the handful of hours of range in between which the prices can update will make up for time zone differences. Of course, I could be completely wrong with my guesses and assumptions with this article, and “Grand Exchange updates” on the toolbar could just as easily mean that the toolbar notifies you whenever new items have been added to the Grand Exchange, thus, updating it. I may install the RuneScape Game Bar just to try it out and see if the features are at all useful, and if there’s anything questionable or notable, I will analyze it in a future article.
Yesterday in the RuneScape news, Jagex revealed that a second Bonus Experience Weekend would be taking place from September 3rd to 6th, 2010. Obviously, this is more than just a weekend – Jagex decided to extend this Bonus Experience Weekend to include both the Friday before and the Monday after the actual weekend. Similar to the previous Bonus Experience Weekend, many people are complaining about how the game has become too centralized on acquiring experience and drifting away from being a fun and enjoyable game. Others are criticizing Jagex because Bonus Experience Weekend is teasing free players and taunting them into paying to become members. I, on the other hand, am going to focus on what the best stats to train are. A stat that most people think would be awesome to train is Prayer. Prayer is currently one of the most expensive skills to train. Granting full immunity of a single type of attack from all NPCs, giving drastic boosts to combat stats, and even providing the option to save an extra item upon death, everyone is eager to get their Prayer level up as high as their budget lets them. Unfortunately, I must inform you that training Prayer is not a good way to spend your Bonus Experience Weekend. The standard and conventional way to train Prayer is to bury bones of any type into the ground. Although the bonus experience multiplier will increase experience from bones buried into the ground, most people do not train Prayer by burying bones into the ground, at least not members. The better, faster, and more commonly used method of training Prayer is to sacrifice bones onto a gilded altar with both lighters lit. This will give 3.5 times the experience received per bone, and is much easier than clicking on each individual bone to bury it. Most people see this and think, “I already get 3.5 times the experience for sacrificing a bone, but with bonus experience active, during the first 30 minutes, I’ll get an additional 2.7 times the normal experience, making my total modifier 9.45! That is almost like burying ten bones in the time it takes to bury one!” Jagex noticed how massively unbalanced this was and decided to only give bonus experience to people that were literally burying bones, not also users of gilded altars or the Ectofunctus. So, the most your modifier for Prayer can become is still only 3.5 times on gilded altars and 4 times on the Ectofunctus. Another stat a lot of people want to train during Bonus Experience Weekend is Summoning. Summoning can get quite expensive with all the Shards and secondary ingredients, so people want to save money by training it during Bonus Experience Weekend. People started stocking up on Summoning Charms, Shards, and secondary ingredients so they could use it all at once during Bonus Experience Weekend. The problem here is that some people have more Charms stocked up than others, and those with no Charms do not have a definite way of acquiring a massive number of Charms on demand. Charm collecting is a process, and those who invest more time into it have more Charms. Jagex also saw this as slightly unbalanced and decided not to give an advantage in Summoning to people who stocked up on Charms. Citing the fact that Summoning requires lots of work before actually training the skill, it was removed from the skills that get a large bonus at the beginning of the weekend, and was given a steady 1.1 time multiplier for the entire duration of the Bonus Experience Weekend. So obviously, if you train Summoning right from the beginning, you’re missing out on the ten hours of additional experience that you could be getting in a different stay. So I just gave examples of two stats not to train. What are some examples of stats that are good to train? Obviously, any other stat that you want to level up quickly is a good candidate. However, some stats are more time-saving or money-saving than others. For example, Construction and Herblore are good because they are expensive, and the bonus experience could end up saving you a lot of money. I personally trained Construction during the previous Bonus Experience weekend. On the other hand, although skills like Runecrafting don’t actually cost anything to train, and instead make a profit, the process of leveling it up is extremely slow and the bonus experience could end up saving you a lot of time. I have been asked a few times what I am going to do during Bonus Experience Weekend. Surprisingly, unlike the previous Bonus Experience Weekend, I have not stocked up on any resources or other items to aid my training. Unlike the previous Bonus Experience Weekend, I am going to train something that I have been doing on a normal basis. Instead of saving massive amounts of time or money, I am just going to quicken the pace of approaching a goal. The goal I have set now is to get Level 99 Ranged. I already have enough Broad-Tipped Bolts to last me the entire weekend, so I don’t have to prepare anything else. What’s good about Ranged is that I can also train other stats at the same time with little to no additional effort. For example, all I have to do is speak with a Slayer Master beforehand and kill the assigned monster to get boosted Slayer experience too. Also, I get Constitution experience for doing damage, which is boosted and rewarded with no additional effort as I train Ranged. Now that you know what I am going to do, it’s time to share what you are going to do. If you would like to contribute your plans to the article, let me know by using the Contact Form, telling me what stats you plan to train, and your reasoning for selecting those stat over the other stats.
Ever since I got 70 Ranged, I have always used Black Spiky Dragonhide Leather Vambraces when training Ranged. For those who do not know, standard dragonhide leather vambraces are turned into their spiky form by attaching Kebbit Claws. Not only will it add white spikes to your character’s wrists, it will also give a small +2 Strength bonus. Obviously, not many people, including myself, use Black Dragonhide Leather Vambraces when training melee, which is the only thing a strength bonus has any effect on. Many people prefer to use gloves acquired through Recipe for Disaster or gauntlets acquired through the Fist of Guthix activity – I myself use Dragon Gauntlets. As a result, most people think that adding Kebbit Claws to vambraces in the first place is pointless because the strength bonus will never help an archer hit more frequently or do more damage. However, these people are forgetting that Rangers are not the only people that use dragonhide leather vambraces. Sometimes, an NPC that a meleer is fighting my use magic or magic-based melee attacks. In that case, the metal armor a meleer may use will only worsen the situation, causing them to take more damage more frequently. Thus, if the meleer is lucky enough to have a Ranged level high enough to wear dragonhide leather armor, it is a much better alternative. Thus, the situation arises in which the strength bonus that comes with the Kebbit Claws on the dragonhide leather armor does make a difference. Slightly sidetracking for a bit, we recently saw the release of three new god-blessed dragonhide leather armor. The silver one represents Armadyl; the brown one represents Bandos; and the purple one represents Zaros, but is called Ancient. These three new sets of armor joined the three pre-existing sets of god-blessed armor: red for Zamorak, blue for Saradomin, and green for Guthix. These six sets of armor have the exact same stat bonuses as standard black dragonhide leather armor, but are significantly more decorated. The three newer sets come in colors that nobody has ever seen leather come in before; Jagex even had to specify that these sets were dyed their corresponding colors to prevent people from thinking that silver Dragons, Brown Dragons, or Purple Dragons existed. However, all god-blessed dragonhide leather armor is missing something – the option to add Kebbit Claws to the vambraces. So back to the meleers fighting NPCs that use some form of magical attack. What if, instead of regular black dragonhide leather armor, they want to use god-blessed dragonhide armor? Many people that have access to black dragonhide leather armor have access to god-blessed dragonhide leather as well, either through getting it as a reward from completing Treasure Trails or purchasing it from other players through the Grand Exchange. There really seems to be little to no reason not to use god-blessed instead of black if you have money to spare. However, the problem from before arises again – Kebbit Claws cannot be added to god-blessed vambraces. So in exchange for a better visual appearance, a player must sacrifice the potential strength bonus from the Kebbit Claws attached to vambraces. Many people would question the importance of this entire issue. Most people dedicated to melee combat would generally wear metal armor and only wear dragonhide leather in the specific circumstances of fighting a magic-using NPC, which most likely is not very frequently. But that about people that are not dedicated to melee but are still training melee, which his common among Rangers and Mages training Defense? An easy example is myself. One of my mid-term goals is to become a Level 99 Ranger, while one of my long-term goals is to get Level 99 Defense. I am obviously more dedicated to my Ranging, and to portray that, my standard choice of dress will be a Robin Hood Hat, Ranger Boots, the full set of Armadyl Dragonhide Leather Armor (because Armadyl is the god most closely correlated with Rangers), and the Ranging Cape of Achievement. Even when I’m doing something completely different than training Ranged, such as skilling or training Defense, I will most likely still wear the same outfit. I have now just proven that I will eventually face the detrimental effects of clawless vambraces. My Attack and Strength levels are high enough that it is faster and more cost-efficient to train Defense with melee rather than the long-range option of Ranged. Simply because of my choice of outfit, I have a disadvantage when it comes to training melee. Of course, many people would suggest that I could simply switch my Armadyl Vambraces with Black Spiky Vambraces, but that would obviously throw the outfit as a whole off balance. Overall, little things can and do matter for many people, including myself. Obviously, the chances of a Jagex staff member reading this and granting my wishes, or even reading this in the first place, are slim. However, if many people mention and request it, the chances of getting it increase. If you support this idea, make threads about it on the RuneScape official forums. If you would like to contribute to this article, feel free to use the Contact Form. Be sure to mention if you support or do not support this idea, and do not forget to include your reasoning behind your opinion.
Long ago, there were many people standing around popular banks like Varrock and Falador, offering to trim armor for free. New players would see these people and eagerly take off their armor to hand it over. They wanted gold trimming on their armor too, just like the high-leveled players, and there was a person there offering to do it for free. However, after the trade is complete, the player offering to do the good deed disappears into thin air. By now, most RuneScape players know that armor trimming is a scam. Trimmed armor isn’t made by players with high Crafting and Smithing levels hammering Gold Bars and turning them into armor trim. It’s actually premade and acquired from completing Treasure Trails, a members-only mini-game. And just as trimmed armor can’t be made, it also can’t be taken apart. Unfortunately, the new players that didn’t know this just lost a full set of armor as a result of unfortunate opportunism. People’s games were being ruined because of players that scammed. New players with low stats have to work hard to earn their money, and after they spend it on some good armor, they lose it within seconds after making a poor decision based off insufficient knowledge. People started complaining to Jagex, demanding that they do something about these scammers. Situations like these, along with problems of real-world trading, encouraged Jagex to take drastic measures, which ended up being the implementation of balanced trading. Balanced trading made it so that most new players with a low number of quest points could not gain or lose a large amount of money; as a result, they could not give away high-leveled armor hoping for it to be trimmed. Nonetheless, they could still lose up to 5,000 coins’ worth of armor, which was still a lot for some people. However, over time, more and more people found out about this scam, and with Jagex constantly telling people to watch out for scams and to report them, the number of scammers started declining. But unexpectedly, in the most recent Treasure Trails update, armor trimming went from a myth to a reality. Trimmed armor has always been popular since they were released a long time ago. Their prices have always been significantly higher than their untrimmed counterparts, and the richer people always bought the trimmed version instead of the untrimmed version to show their wealthier status in RuneScape. For the even richer players, there was gold-trimmed armor, which was rarer and even more expensive than regular trimmed armor. A simple addition of a second color on the armor attracted the attention of so many people that it eventually became an icon of riches. Jagex noticed how popular their original trimmed armor was – Black, Adamant, and Rune. They then came up with trimmed and gold-trimmed versons of magic robes and dragonhide leather in a Treasure Trails update. These also had lots of positive feedback, particularly the magic robes due to the extravagant combination the blue of the robes and the gold of the trim made. As we all know, there are always some people that don’t like particular new updates. In this case, the people that were left out were the high-leveled players. The experienced warriors were not going to simply wear trimmed or gold-trimmed Rune armor when they had the Defense level to wear Dragon armor, which did not come in a trimmed or gold-trimmed version. The experienced archers were not going to simply wear trimmed or gold-trimmed Blue Dragonhide Leather armor when they had the Ranged and Defense levels to wear Black Dragonhide Leather armor, which did not come in a trimmed or gold-trimmed version. And finally, the experienced mages were not going to simply wear trimmed or gold-trimmed Wizard Robes when they had the Magic level to use Mystic Robes, which did not come in a trimmed or gold-trimmed version. Unfortunately, the archers and mages are still left out. Rangers could wear some nicely colored and somewhat-trimmed God-Blessed Dragonhide Leather armor, but sometimes, a basic trimmed and gold trimmed version of Black Dragonhide Leather armor is what people, including myself, want. But lucky for warriors, Jagex answered their requests. In the most recent Treasure Trails update, they introduced gold-trimmed Dragon armor into the game. The interesting thing about this is that they changed the way it is acquired. Instead of having them as actual rewards for completing a Treasure Trail, they must be made by using an Ornament Kit on regular Dragon armor, with the Ornament Kit being the reward for completing the Treasure Trail. So as you can probably see by now, this completely contradicts what people have been trying so hard to get drilled into everyone’s heads. Fortunately, there are some things that keep this update from being a complete inconsistency. First of all, the only newly trimmable or enhancable items are Dragon. As most of us know, Dragon armor is extremely expensive, and does not fall under one of the acceptable items for giving away while receiving nothing in return. Someone that has 270 quest points can only trade up to 60,000 coins with a stranger, and no Dragon armor is less than 60,000 coins. If this person were to have the person he or she wishes to trade with on his or her friends list for three months, the limit loosens to 240,000 coins; that still isn’t enough to even scam a Dragon Square Shield out of someone. Also, trimmed or enhanced armor is not tradeable when it comes to Dragon. The actual Ornament Kits needed to trim or enhance the Dragon armor can be sold, but once it is applied to the Dragon armor, it becomes usable exclusively by the person who trimmed it until they remove the trim or enhancement. When more people figure this out, they’ll know immediately that when someone offers trimmed or enhanced Dragon armor in a trade, they are trying to scam.
Is Dungeoneering the new Slayer? With everyone wanting to do things as quickly as possible these days, a common question heard around the streets is “What is the fastest way to train combat?” Instead of hearing a response telling people to go to a specific place using specific equipment and using a specific techinque, most people just say “Slayer.” Obviously, there’s no place named “Slayer” that you can go to train; when people say Slayer, they mean that the best way to train combat is in conjunction with Slayer, now more so than ever. The reason for this is quite simple – if you have enough money, you can buy yourself a Black Mask, Focus Sight, or Hexcrest, depending on what form of combat that you use, and boost your attack power. At first, the Black Mask was the only boosting item available, but with the release of the latter two items, all classes of fighters get an advantage. Unfortunately, this is only effective while fighting monsters assigned through Slayer tasks. So going back to the first question – is Dungeoneering the new Slayer? In the recent Dungeoneering update, Jagex also updated the function of the Ring of Kinship. When Dungeoneering was first introduced, the Ring of Kinship wasn’t actually useful except for teleporting to Daemonheim and starting your own party. However, now, when inside a dungeon, a player can permanently upgrade their ring with Dungeoneering tokens and have it boost a variety of stats, including ones under the Melee, Ranged, Magic, and Skiller categories. First of all, the costs. Each class can be upgraded up to ten times permanently; when Dungeoneering tokens are spent on upgrading a particular class, those tokens can never be refunded, and the boost will never be removed. However, it is important to note that only one specific class can be selected at a time. That means, even if you have invested in two different classes ten times each, you can only take advantage of one boost at a time. For Tier 1, a mere 135 tokens is sufficient to get the initial boost. The second tier requires 175 tokens, the third tier requires 335 tokens, the fourth tier requires 660 tokens, the fifth tier requires 1360 tokens, the sixth tier requires 3400 tokens, the seventh tier requires 6800 tokens, the eighth tier requires 18,750 tokens, the ninth tier requires 58,600 tokens, and the tenth and final tier requires 233,000 tokens. Overall, to get from Tier 0 to Tier 10, a player needs to spend a total of 323,215 tokens. Warriors can pick among the Tank, Tactitian, and Berserker classes. The Tank class will reduce the amount of damage the wearer of the ring takes from enemies; the damage reduction begins at 6% when at Tier 1, and increases by 1% each time the tier is upgraded. It is required for the player to activate this specific class, use the Defensive option on their weapon, and have a shield equipped to be able to benefit from this upgrade. The Tactitian will increase the chances of the player hitting his or her target; the percent chance bonus begins at +11% and increases by +1% each time the tier is upgraded. It is required for the player to activate this specific class and to use the Accurate stance on their weapon to be able to benefit from this upgrade. Finally, the Berserker class gives a bonus to the player’s Strength level when calculating damage done to a target; the Strength level bonus begins at +11% and increases by +1% each time the tier is upgraded. It is required for the player to activate this specific class with their Ring of Kinship and to use the Aggressive stance on the his or her weapon to be able to benefit from this upgrade. Archers can pick among the Sniper, Keen Eye, and Desperado classes. The Sniper class will increase the chance of achieving a maximum hit when using the Longrange attack style on the equipped bow. The bonus begins at 20%. Upgrading to Tier 2, Tier 4, Tier 5, Tier 7, Tier 8, and Tier 10 will give a 3% additional bonus from the previous tier; upgrading to Tier 3, Tier 6, and Tier 9 will give a 4% additional bonus from the previous tier. The Keen Eye class determines how often a player using the class and using the Accurate attack style on his or her bow will lower his or her opponent’s defense level by 1. The percentage chance begins at 40%, and steadily increases until it reaches 100% at Tier 10 – that means, when at Tier 10, using the Accurate style while having this class equipped will guarantee that each shot’s accuracy and damage will be calculated with a value of 1 subtracted from the opponent’s defense stat. Finally, the Desperado class will give the Archer’s Ranged level a bonus when using the Rapid attack style and having the class activated; the bonus begins at +11%, and will increase by +1% each time the tier is upgraded. Mages can pick among the Blazer, Blaster, and Blitzer classes. The Blazer class determines the chance of inflicting an additional 50% damage while having the class activated and using elemental spells. The chance begins at 5% at Tier 1, and increases by 5% for each tier upgrade until it reaches 50% at Tier 10. The Blaster class determines the chance to slow an opponent’s attack speed and snare them while having the Blaster class activated on the Ring of Kinship and using elemental spells. The chance begins at 12% at Tier 1, and increases by 2% for each tier upgrade until it reaches 30% at Tier 10. Finally, the Blitzer class determines the chance of casting an elemental spell faster while having the class activated. The chance begins at 10% at Tier 1, and increases by 10% for each tier upgrade; that means, by the time a player reaches Tier 10, he or she will have a guaranteed speed increase for every elemental spell he or she casts. Skillers can pick among the Medic, Gatherer, and Artisan classes. The Medic class, when activated, provides a healing bonus when healing another player. The bonus begins at +20% at Tier 1. Upgrading to Tier 2, Tier 4, Tier 5, Tier 7, Tier 8, and Tier 10 will give a 3% additional bonus from the previous tier; upgrading to Tier 3, Tier 6, and Tier 9 will give a 4% additional bonus from the previous tier. The Gatherer class, when activated, will do two different things – first, it will determine the chance that a skiller gains extra resources when gathering. Second, it will determine by how much failed skill damage is reduced by. For example, at Tier 1, the chance begins at 20%; at Tier 1, a Gatherer will have a 20% chance of gaining extra resources when gathering resources, and take 20% less damage when failing any skill-related tasks. The amount the percentage increases is the same as the Medics, and the maximum is reached at Tier 10 at a chance of 50%. Finally, the Artisan class, when activated, does three different things. First, similar to the Gatherer bonus with resources, it will help optimize the use of resources. However, unlike the Gatherer class, which will provide extra bonuses when gathering, the Artisan class will determine the chance of saving resources when actually using. Second, the percentage chance also applies to the amount of damage reduced by failing a skill-related task (the same as the Gatherer class). Third, the tier will also determine the amount the skiller’s Runecrafting level is boosted by when crafting multiple runes. For example, if a skiller has the Artisan skill activated and has it upgraded to Tier 5, he or she will have a 33% chance of saving resources when using resources, take 33% less damage when failing a skill-related task, and get a +5 Runecrafting level bonus when crafting multiple runes. The amount the percentage chance increases by is the same as the Medic and Gatherer classes. As clearly visible, with an investment of some Dungeoneering tokens, the Ring of Kinship can be a good item to use in Dungeoneering dungeons, and at higher tiers, can be much better bonus-wise than the Slayer items. Thus, this creates an incentive for people to do Dungeoneering some more; although it may be hard at first while a player earns the tokens necessary to upgrade a tier, he or she will get some good benefits from it and get some good combat experience while using the Ring of Kinship.
In the previous article about Resource Dungeons, I gave a general overview of how introducing Resource Dungeons into RuneScape made Dungeoneering more of a skill than a mini-game. I also gave a basic outline of a few of the dungeons, including the two lower-leveled free-player Resource Dungeons. In this article, I will continue my elaboration on the remaining three free-player Resource Dungeons as of today, outline the benefits and disadvantages of each Resource Dungeon, and describe some special methods of how each Resource Dungeon can be put to good use. Once a player reaches Level 25 Dungeoneering, he or she can enter the Resource Dungeon in the Karamja Volcano. Near the southern-most Lesser Demon spawn, a new entrance has been placed where one can enter and fight more Lesser Demons and Imps. In the Resource Dungeon, there are 14 additional Lesser Demons and 11 Imps, effectively making this a dungeon of Zamorak-following creatures. This area is obviously not for lower-leveled players, as Lesser Demons are Combat Level 82 and have an maximum hit of approximately 82 life points. This is a good place for higher-leveled free players to train their melee stats. Right outside the Resource Dungeon, there are a handful of Lesser Demon spawns that are generally hunted by Rangers and Mages that take advantage of the stalagmites and use them as safe spots to avoid attack by the Lesser Demons. This is bad for the Warriors because of the extra time it takes to run to the Lesser Demon in order to engage it in combat. Now, instead of being frustrated with safe spotters, Warriors can go into the Resource Dungeon and fight the Lesser Demons in there. Except for a massive hole in the ground in the center of the Resource Dungeon, there aren’t very good safe spots. Even taking advantage of the random hold, Rangers and Mages still risk attack from behind by other aggressive Lesser Demons, essentially guaranteeing that unless they are tanking Rangers or taking Mages (which are extremely rare in free worlds), they’re not going to risk death by using the Resource Dungeon. Of course, there may still be competition with other Warriors, but at least you’re on equal ground when you go to engage a Lesser Demon in combat. Once achieving Level 30 Dungeoneering, a player earns the right to enter the Resource Dungeon on the Daemonheim Peninsula. Unfortunately, for many people, tere are no monster spawns and no item spawns in this Resource Dungeon. However, there’s something in this dungeon that is in no other free player Resource Dungeons – trees. For the first time ever, free players can now chop Maple Trees. Once entering the dungeon, players will find that there are 8 Maple Tree spawns and 6 Willow Tree spawns, making this a good training area for players with a wide range of Woodcutting levels. Although there is no bank deposit box inside the Resource Dungeon, and the closest bank is the Daemonheim bank, many people already used Willows in free worlds to powertrain their Woodcutting anyway. As for the Maple Trees, giving millions of free players access to chopping Maple Trees will obviously drastically lower the price on Maple Logs, and may increase the supply of Maple Logs by multiples of integers. This will most likely bring the price of Maple Logs back down to what they used to be. During February and March, the price of Maple Logs plateaued at around 34 coins, and never went above 35 coins a piece until about May. Since then, the demand of Maple Logs has drastically risen and as of today, prices of Maple Logs can reach up to 60 coins each. Simply doubling the supply of Maple Logs will cut the price of each Maple Log in half, effectively bringing the price back down to what it used to be. All Firemakers rejoice. Finally, the hardest Resource Dungeon that free players can access, and in my opinion, the most exciting, is the one in the Mining Guild. Requiring Level 45 in Dungeoneering to access, it requires that the player spent a good amount of time in Daemonheim training up their Dungeoneering skill. The Resource Dungeon in the Mining Guild combined with the Resource Dungeon in the Dwarven Mines is a miner’s dream come true. The Mining Guild Resource Dungeon comes with a whopping 8 Mithril rocks, 4 Adamantite rocks, and 3 Runite rocks. This more or less gives free players the opportunity to get some extremely high leveled ores in the Resource Dungeon while getting tons of Coal in the main Mining Guild area, then use spells like Superheat Item to turn the ores and coal into bars. Once they are done and have a full inventory, they can trot over past the gate into the Dwarven Mines, walk a few steps more, enter the lower-leveled Resource Dungeon, bank all their bars, and repeat the entire process. Obviously, giving such an advantage to miners and smithers encourages more people to train Mining and Smithing, especially within the Mining Guild. But as if that wasn’t enough, as mentioned a short while ago, there are 3 Runite rocks in the Mining Guild’s Resource Dungeon. Normally, Runite miners had to go around to the Wilderness and other hazardous areas in order to mine Runite. For free players, the number of rocks of Runite they could even mine were extremely limited. With three additional rocks in the Resource Dungeon, a free player could make a large sum of money by mining runite ore, and do so in a much more efficient and safer manner. Many might say that these three Resource Dungeons and the two Resource Dungeons in the previous article available to free players give too much of an advantage. However, I think that in the ever-growing land of RuneScape, any expansion is a good one. With more and more players coming in daily, it is important that Jagex has something to interest everyone, and with every new area, the chances of individual satisfaction rise.
When Dungeoneering was first released, a lot of people didn’t like the idea of having something like a mini-game become a skill. But like everything that brings negativity, with time, people stopped complaining and started to accept the fact that Dungeoneering wasn’t going away. Yesterday, Jagex released an update that would satisfy even those who disliked Dungeoneering. New hidden areas called Resource Dungeons were added to the RuneScape world, providing another outside-of-Daemonheim use for gaining Dungeoneering levels. Resources Dungeons all have a Dungeoneering level requirement to access, some as low as 10 and some as high as 85. The lower-leveled Resource Dungeons have incentives of a lower scale – herb spawns, mining rocks, extra spawns of popular creatures, and a more convenient banking area. The higher-leveled Resource Dungeons have much better incentives, including more powerful popular creatures, and the unique Frost Dragon that drops bones currently available for sale on the Grand Exchange for 20,000 coins each. One very important thing about this update is that it finally introduces actual advantages for having a higher Dungeoneering level, and treats Dungeoneering more like a skill than a mini-game. For example, with Woodcutting, which is definitely a skill, the higher the level, the better the wood a player can chop. With Fishing, which is also definitely a skill, the higher the level, the better the fish a player can catch. Now, with Dungeoneering, which was once a questionable skill, the higher the level, the better the dungeons a player can access in the regular RuneScape world. As we all know, there is no item that requires a specific level or achievement in a mini-game to use or access. There are particular items that require players to get a sufficient amount of game currency to purchase, like Castle Wars tickets for Castle Wars items. But, that didn’t make Castle Wars a skill. This used to parallel Dungeoneering – players need Dungeoneering tokens to purchase Dungeoneering items, but this didn’t make Dungeoneering a skill. As for the level requirements to use a particular Dungeoneering item, they were pathetic. My favorite Dungeoneering item, the Bone Crusher, requires Level 21 Dungeoneering to use. But that does not matter – we might as well completely ignore the Dungeoneering level requirement for the Bone Crusher, because it is irrelevant. Why? To get enough tokens to even afford the Bone Crusher, a minimum of Level 63 is required. From a critical standpoint, it seems like Jagex put in these level requirements to make Dungeoneering look more like a skill. I’m not 100% sure on this because I haven’t been keeping up with my research, but I’m pretty confident that nobody ever has to worry about purchasing an item and not being able to use it because of a low Dungeoneering level. If someone got enough Dungeoneering tokens to be able to afford an item, their Dungeoneering level is most likely far above the item level requirement. Back to the Resource Dungeons. As of today, there are five Resource Dungeons that are available to free players. The first one requires Level 15 Dungeoneering and is inside the Dwarven Mine. It contains 3 Silver rocks, 13 Coal rocks, 6 Mithril rocks, and a bank deposit box. The highlight of this Resource Dungeon is obviously the bank deposit box. For free players both accessing the main Dwarven Mines and the extra Mining Guild area, the closest bank was the Falador east bank. Now, with a measily Level 15 Dungeoneering, they can go a handful of steps away, not even have to leave the underground mine, and bank their ores and go back to mining in under a minute. On a large scale, this will save people time and let them spend more time Mining and less time walking to bank; this also discourages any powerminers as there’s a bank where they can deposit ores more quickly than they can drop them. In an extreme sense, this will lower the price of ores. The next Resource Dungeon available to free players requires Level 20 Dungeoneering and is located in the southern portion of Edgeville Dungeon where the Hill Giants spawn. In free worlds, this area is always populated because it’s a good place for lower-leveled players to train, and because the Hill Giants drop Big Bones, useful for training Prayer. The Resource Dungeon contains 11 more Hill Giant spawns, allowing people with over Level 20 Dungeoneering to kill Hill Giants in a less populated and more peaceful area. Not only are there Hill Giant spawns, there are also four Limpwurt Root spawns. Although there is likely going to be competition for these free roots, each of these roots can sell for over 2,000 coins as of today, being a good source of income for anyone who manages to get a hold of one. Those who are successful in acquiring the full four spawns can get a hefty 9,000 coins or so. This will obviously put more Limpwurt Roots and Big Bones into circulation, bring their prices down slightly, but also makes it marginally more convenient for free players to train their Prayer levels. In the next article, I will be continuing my elaboration on the remaining three free player Resource Dungeons.
I don’t know why the music didn’t render. Ask my video editing software, not me. Points of interest at 01:01 and 09:38.
We recently saw the closing of a poll that was open to voting by both members and non-members: What would you like the Halloween 2010 Holiday Event reward to be? I, along with thousands of others, gave input by voting, and after the dust settled, the winner emerged: The Bone Brooch. What is the Bone Brooch? People that were around for the Easter Holiday Event a handful of years ago received a ring that, when activated, turned the character wearing the ring into an egg. This description may remind you of an enchanted Onyx Ring, which, when activated, turns the wearer into a set of rocks. The Bone Brooch will be just like these rings, but instead of transforming the player into an egg or some rocks, it would turn them into a pile of bones. In all these cases, the morphed player would still be able to talk and message friends, but would not be able to walk. I’m also pretty sure they cannot engage in any other skilling activities (such as alchemizing or fletching bows), but because I do not own either of the rings, I have not tested this theory out for myself. What Did You Vote For? I voted for the Skeletal Puppy, which would have been similar to the dogs and other animals that members can keep as pets (except it would be made out of bones). There were a lot of decent options in the poll, but the Skeletal Puppy was most unique compared to previous holiday event rewards. The Bone Brooch mentioned above was pretty clever, but there was already a similar item from a previous event. The non-following pet would have been good as well, but closely resembles Eek from Halloween 2009 and the summonable chipmunk from Easter 2010. A follower would have been completely unique, as it resembles no other previous rewards closely. It is arguable that the imp from the Christmas event is a follower, but the imp acts as more of a quest guide than a pet. Shortening the Gap between Members and Non-Members Something I was initially shocked to discover was that the free players did not all vote for the Skeletal Puppy and have it win by a landslide. Introducing followers to non-members would give them a taste of what Summoning is like for members. Although results would differ depending on public intake, a preview of a pet would most likely encourage more people to buy membership, as members can not only own a pet made of bones, but also own real animals and creatures (better known as Summoning familiars) with special abilities. The only two reasons I can think of that the Skeletal Puppy did not win drastically is that either the free players did not come to this conclusion, or the members that already have access to pets voted differently. My Final Thoughts I honestly don’t really care what the holiday event rewards are. After holiday items became untradeable, the essentially became useless. It’s not like I’m going to wear an item I got from a holiday event on a regular basis; I’m rich enough in-game to afford much better armor and clothing. The only reason I even do holiday events nowadays is because of the quest associated with the event that I eventually have to do anyway to get a Quest Point Cape of Achievement, and because I feel like I have to document my existence during the time of the holiday event. Even if the Halloween 2010 winner was the Skeletal Puppy, I still don’t think I would have used it in free worlds, as I’m not that big of a fan of having an undead creature following me around.