|Release date||10 December 2007 (Update)|
|Location||Bounty Hunter Crater|
|In spotlight rotation||No|
|Hiscores||Yes (bounty and rogue kills)|
|Music unlocked||Bounty Hunter Level 1, Bounty Hunter Level 2, Bounty Hunter Level 3|
Bounty Hunter (also known as BH) was a player-killing minigame for both P2P and F2P players. Bounty Hunter was released on 10 December 2007 as a replacement for the ability to kill players throughout the Wilderness, which was removed in the same update as a counter measure to real-world trading. Bounty Hunter was reworked and replaced by Bounty Hunter worlds on 6 May 2009. The area used for the minigame, Bounty Hunter crater, became inaccessible with this update, until it later became the Wilderness Volcano.
The main entrance was at the south-east corner of a large grey area in the wilderness, at approximately level 19. It was north-east of Edgeville, west of Clan Wars and Graveyard of Shadows, and north-north-west of Varrock. The area beyond the steps was not considered part of the Wilderness, and so revenants could not pursue a player into the area. There was a bank where players could restock or deposit loot or prohibited items. The banker's name was Maximillian Sackville.
The games necklace could be used to teleport here.
There were three cave entrances to the east of the steps, bank and scorecard area, from south to north they were:
- Low Level Crater: 3-55
- Medium Level crater: 50-100
- High Level crater: 95+
The level requirements did not include summoning.
Orbs at the sides of the cave entrance could be used to view the action inside, from any of the 9 orb posts within. Only the cave or caves that the player had the level to enter could be viewed. The pan and tilt controls could be operate while viewing and the cursor could be used to get players' names and levels.
Entering the fight
To begin playing Bounty Hunter, the player had to first speak with Mandrith, who would explain how the minigame worked. Players could not take any of the following into the bounty hunter area:
- Non-combat items.
- More than one piece of armour per combat style per body part. For example, the player could not take a green dragonhide body and black dragonhide body, however, the player could take a green dragonhide body and black dragonhide chaps (since they are different body parts), or a green dragonhide body and a rune platebody (since they are different fighting styles).
- More than 4 wieldable weapons, or more than 1,000 of each type of stackable ammunition (runes, arrows, bolts, etc.).
- Pay-to-play items in free-to-play worlds.
In addition, the player could not drop any items or stacks of items worth more than 1,000 coins (based on the market value at the Grand Exchange) in the Bounty Hunter crater.
The player would become a special type of skulled as soon as they started the minigame. The player would have a skull (in the colours of brown, grey, green, blue, or red) and pile of coins over their head, depending on the value of the items that they carried at the time.
On entering, players found themselves at a random doorway and were immune to attack for 6 seconds. Any depleted player stats were replenished on entry and exit.
Players were given a target, marked in the top right corner of the screen. If they killed anyone else then they would get a "pick-up penalty" for a limited time, where they could not use the Protect Item Prayer. In addition, if they picked up any items while under a pickup penalty, then they would get a "leave penalty", where on top of not being able to use Protect Item, they would not be able to leave the crater or log out until the penalty expired, or until they killed their designated target.
If the player's target was within range, a red arrow on the minimap pointed in their general direction, changing to yellow when closer and to a hollow yellow overhead arrow on the main screen.
Piling became ineffective once Bounty Hunter became a one-way combat zone. As of 19 February 2008, the Bounty Locate spell became available to Free Players and the Magic level required to cast it was significantly lowered from 85 to 32. Therefore, while in the minigame, it is likely that the player who is supposed to hunt you down would teleport to find you much sooner than previously.
The update also allowed bounty hunters to steal players from combat, much like revenants. Therefore it was not uncommon to see players waiting to attack weakened players.
A vast amount of players used a strategy which entailed bringing a single weapon, often a poisoned dragon dagger or granite maul (as both of these weapons provided potentially high, multiple hitting special attacks), and using the "Protect Item" prayer to prevent loss of the item.
- Most free players brought some sort of finisher weapon, since they did not have access to special attacks. The vast majority of players used two-handed swords for this purpose. The player started combat with a fast weapon such as a scimitar or a maple shortbow with adamant arrows, but switched to the 2-Handed Sword to deal the death blow.
- The Bounty Locate spell could be used to get away from dangerous situations, as long as the player was not in combat at the time. If you used Bounty Locate while in battle, you couldn't teleport and the spell would still consume your runes. A good example was when a large mass of white dots was visible at the edge of the minimap.
- Many low level free players used ranged, as they could get 70 ranged, while remaining at only 49 combat. Using adamant arrows and prayer they could hit up to 141. People often used a 2-Handed Sword as a finisher, as well as a bow.
- Being stood next to a cave entrance and killing your hunter when they came in was another tactic as you could leave at any time. This was good for experience rather than money making, also it stopped the risk of losing item.
- In F2P, it was hard to get kills while players were wearing armours such as rune, since F2P weapons were not as accurate and did not hit as hard. Therefore, in the mid and high level crater, players often asked each other to take off their armours and fight. This would make getting kills more likely. However, this meant that you also have a great danger of being killed.
- Many people used high-level weapons such as Dragon, Barrows, Ancients, etc. It was recommended to use them, however these high-level weapons required an attack level anywhere from 60 to 75.
- High-level food was highly recommended, because of the intense damage that players dealt. swordfish or higher were strongly recommended. sharks were favoured due to their restoration of 20 health points and relative cost.
- For armour: Rune, Dragonhide, Barrows, obsidian shield, etc.
- Similar to the F2P tactic, most people brought a finisher weapon, commonly a dragon dagger, granite maul, dark bow or another weapon which had a high strength or ranged bonus.
- A good tactic was to bring 2 types of attack (e.g. magic shortbow and a dragon dagger(p++).
As of 19 February 2008, a Bounty reward was available to all hunters who had killed at least 10 assigned players in the minigame. The rewards were categorised depending on which entrance you entered to kill your bounty.
- Low-level area: up to 40,000 coins value of reward
- Mid-level area: up to 80,000 coins value of reward
- High-level area: up to 120,000 coins value of reward
In F2P worlds, low-level players used the tactic of picking up 'leftovers' - which is where low-level players darted back and forth in between the caves picking up as many mithril/adamant arrows as they could, but without taking in any items themselves - this tactic was popular mainly because of the vast amount of rangers, exits and arrows in caves.
While in the arena an icon would be visible above the player's head. The value of the equipment and inventory the player was carrying would determine the colour as shown in the following table:
|Brown||100k or below|
|Grey||100k - 500k|
The colours of all the equipment values were the same colours as the following metals: Bronze, Steel, Adamant, Rune and Dragon.
The only way out was by the doorways at intervals in the walls. Teleporting out was not possible. If the player became a "rogue" (by killing a person who was not assigned as their target), a countdown of 180 seconds (3 minutes) would begin. You could see how much time is left in the count down on the top-right corner of your screen. If the player picked up dropped items during this time, they could not leave for another 3 minutes which reset itself each time that the player picked up items. Logging out would also not be possible. The only way to cancel the countdown was to kill the player you were assigned to kill in the first place.
If you died in Bounty Hunter, you would lose all of your items. The only way to not lose your items was with the Protect Item prayer, unless the player had a pickup penalty in which case they would not be able to use this prayer. If you died during the game, you would have appeared outside the caves rather than your normal respawn location. After you died and got teleported outside of the caves, you would not be able to enter a cave again for 2 minutes. If you left the cave through a door you would not be allowed to enter again for 30 seconds.