Hard mode is a Dungeoneering feature that was released 10 September 2013. It can be obtained as a reward after completing the elite set of Daemonheim tasks. It is only available for complexity 6 dungeons and makes the dungeon as difficult as it can randomly be.
In order to gain access to Hard mode, players must have completed the Elite Daemonheim tasks.
Players who have not completed the Elite tasks may take part in Hard mode floors with other players who have. Players who have completed the Elite tasks must form the party and lead the dungeon. They then invite the players without the tasks complete into the floors.
To start Hard mode, select a floor and set the difficulty to Complexity 6 via the Ring of kinship or the ladder. Attempting to start a floor results in the Floor Settings interface, the top section of which contains a toggle for Hard Mode.
Unlike normal mode, Hard Mode is significantly harder:
- Teams of 1-2 get a mandatory medium map, while 3+ gets a mandatory large map.
- Most, if not all enemies will be at the highest level possible.
- Each room is almost guaranteed to contain a max level monster and all rooms are filled to the brim with monsters (e.g a solo player gets three monsters in each room).
- The only exception are mastyx, as despite being a resource, they are also considered a monster. They are more likely to appear as tier 8+ mastyx.
- Slayer monsters have drastically increased spawn rates - for example, Soulgazers can appear on the Frozen Floors, which is impossible otherwise.
- Every door acts as a Guardian door, including puzzle and key doors - all monsters in the room the player is in must be killed in order to lift the restriction.
- This does not apply to teleporting out, apart from boss doors which will prevent players from teleporting until the boss is killed.
- Skill doors and puzzles will have drastically increased requirements - critical path doors will always require a level 90+ skill to unlock. Any skill or puzzle that requires over 99 is a non-critical door.
- Bosses have a greater chance of dropping tier 10 and 11 equipment, which is rather uncommon in small normal mode teams.
- Monsters will not drop as much food as they would in normal mode.
- The Daemonheim auras' boss selection and safe death perks will not work in Hard Mode.
- Greater chance of tier 8+ resources appearing in rooms, including blue charms (which are essentially tier 9+ charms).
For this reason, only the shadow silk hood should be binded as armour to avoid multiple enemies from attacking at once, due to the reduced amount of food dropped from monsters. Prayers should be used sparingly unless an altar room has been found and cleared, since it is typically not worth the time to make prayer potions. Players should also bring all three forms of combat if possible to maximise their accuracy against all potential opponents. A recommended setup includes any primal two-handed weapon for Quake, a Celestial catalytic staff and a hexhunter or sagittarian bow. A sachem bloodrager, deathslinger or stormweaver can help speed up kills, as the monsters have very high defence with low affinity and various weaknesses.
Progression in Hard mode vs. Normal mode
Hard mode's progression is different than Normal mode, as there is no way to check which floors were completed with the ring of kinship. You can check which floors were completed through Thok's interface. There is a message that appears at the end of each Hard mode floor, however:
You have completed floor [number] on Hard Mode. Your lowest floor incomplete on hard mode is: [number].
For example, if you have recently completed floor 25, but have not completed floor 2, it reads as:
You have completed floor 25 on Hard Mode. Your lowest floor incomplete on hard mode is: 2. This means players can do three things:
- Complete floor 2, so that the message says "incomplete floor: 3"
- Complete other floors, leaving floor 2 as a guideline
- Players may also write the numbers down.
Unlike Normal mode, where a player is able to do previous floors in a Theme to check-off other themed floors, Hard mode goes floor-by-floor. You cannot do floor 1 twice in hopes of it ticking off floor 2.
Players are unable to reset their Hard mode progress. Once a floor is completed in Hard mode, it is permanently ticked off for hard mode. If players need to reset their current progress, that only affects the Normal mode floors.
Hard mode floors may be redone; however, unlike normal floor progress, repeating a floor does not affect the progress of any other floors.
After completing all of the 60 Floors of Daemonheim in Hard mode, players are rewarded with a title: "[Name] of Daemonheim".
- Hard as Daemons ( 25) - Earn the right to wear the title 'of Daemonheim'.
- While not officially stated, 90+ in each skill is required to complete the dungeons due to the critical path always having level 90 requirements on skill doors.
- It does not matter the order in which you complete Hard mode.
- You can start on Floor 60 and work your way backwards, for example. The chatbox displays that your highest floor complete is 60, and your lowest incomplete is 1.
- It is possible to see multiple high level Slayer monsters such as Soulgazers and Edimmus in the same room. Usually, even in a normal five-person large dungeon, there would be only one of these monsters in a room.
- Despite increasing the combat levels of all monsters in the dungeon, it occasionally glitches out:
- While monsters have been given a significant boost in terms of their level of difficulty, boostable doors remain the same.
- As of 2 October 2013, forced large floors are no longer an issue. Prior to that, however, during the week of 25 September 2013, upon selecting yes, a floor of large size would initiate, regardless of team size.