So, what has RuneScape got in store for you this winter? We are of course working on more than just the things we revealed at RuneFest, but we wanted to focus here on the content we know is coming out, rather than talking about ‘pie in the sky’ stuff that’s still further off down the line.
We know you get frustrated with dreams and broken promises, so you can take EVERYTHING we are about to say as sacrosanct, unchangeable, 100% ‘yes indeedy’ updates. The other things were working on are just too early to reveal, but we will have plenty of information for you about them very soon.
Until then, let’s get stuck in… and introduce to you our first reveal – ‘Till Death Do Us Part.
‘Til Death Do Us Part
This is our fantastic, month-long event for both free and member worlds, encapsulating all the drama and emotions from Hallowe’en, and delivering a hefty boot up the arse as the intensity escalates to a glorious conclusion.
What’s the story then? Well, initially an innocent looking sinkhole appears outside Draynor Village, and Moia, the Zamorokian general and daughter of Lucien, has turned up to investigate.
That weird tainted shard item you found in your inventory a few days back? Well, that’s used to gather charges to help with the event, but while you’re off doing that, the sinkhole explodes and traps Moia, releasing powerful enemies, most of which have been previously entombed inside Daemonheim.
Whilst earning slayer XP and killing the enemies as they plough out of the rift, pillars throb around the void, changing in function regularly, requiring you to use different skills on each pillar to keep the void at bay. You’ll earn XP as you do so, but the threat levels of the enemies raise, ultimately requiring some significant outside help to deal with things. So let’s introduce… the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse!
These guys will be on hand to lend a helping claw, or bone, to avoid a catastrophe. You know all about Death, of course. Next up is War, dragged back out of comfy retirement to bring his considerable power to the battle. Pestilence follows – a human, cursed with lycanthropy and forced to stay in his wolf form, otherwise he’ll be overwhelmed by disease and die instantly. Avoid his fleas and his crazy frog-bow-thing. Finally we can see Famine at the back – believe it or not that’s an aviansie. Thrown out to die by her peers, she exacted her revenge by poisoning the food stores of her home village, killing everyone who knew her, and barely batting an eyelid about it.
Each Horseman can be triggered like a powerup, causing powerful effects like spawning War’s weapons rack, using his javelins to rain down sweet justice, or Pestilence’s cauldron of bile. Nice. Thank Guthix that they are on your side. This time…
With Moia still trapped inside and the threat level escalating, one final fight remains at the end, but I won’t spoil that for you. Trust me, it’s worth checking it out.
What do you earn for this glorious, month long Hallowe’en extravaganza? Well, there’s access to a special loot cave filled with goodies, including cosmetic overrides for your weapons, mimicking those of the Riders. There’s also a plethora of transformation animations and plenty of XP. The lore-hounds amongst you should know that this event is another part of this years ‘hidden’ narrative…
This was first spoken about at last year’s Game Jam – a special event at Jagex where developers worked in tandem with you over one special weekend, sharing designs and discussing ideas and ultimately developing classy content ready for the game! It proved to be so popular that we’ve already done another one this year, and we will do others in the future… but more info on that later. This quest was designed by Mods Osborne and Krista and is a novice quest set in the Piscatoris peninsula.
It’s a story told from multiple perspectives, focussing around a local family and the Needle – a powerful artefact created by the elder gods to aid them with their planetary constructions. Something horrific has happened… but due to the powers of the needle the whole site is trapped in some kind of time bubble, leaving an untouched crime scene for you to investigate.
You’ll be using a search engine of sorts, entering clue words that you have discovered to unlock glimpses of history stored inside the bubble. As you discover more clues and clue words, further plot is revealed, finally giving you the chance to save the unfortunate individuals trapped inside.
This is the latest in a long history of detective quests, with previous examples like Murder Mystery or One Piercing note. And just like One Piercing Note, it’s a fully voiced quest, and an all-female cast. It’s also the quest that brings us up to 400 quest points, which means one more slayer block slot is available. Players also get access to Spot, the baby black dragon wolf, and can have another go on the magical dice! And, of course, you’ll have access to another elder artefact – the Needle itself. No doubt that will come in handy in the future (or past) too.
Elite Dungeon 3
This year we’ve released two Elite Dungeons: The Temple of Aminishi and The Dragonkin Laboratory. You’ve helped free Seiryu from a dark corruption, met Astellarn, the first celestial dragon and battled the mysterious Blackstone Dragon. But now comes the real test. Concluding the storyline and the final part in our trilogy – it’s Elite Dungeon 3!
Set in the ocean in the Sunken Darkness, Elite Dungeon 3 will feature a particular character from Runefest talks past – The Ambassador.
This guy, once a noble Dragonkin, has been twisted and warped by Xau-Tak, and is now his self-proclaimed ambassador on Gielinor, paving the way, along with his other boss friends, to bring Xau-Tak to Gielinor. It’s the centre piece to the hidden storyline that has been rumbling on – you might remember hints from Pieces of Hate, Nomad’s Elegy, Kindred Spirits, Heroes Welcome, even seeded in the Pirate storyline and Skeletal Horror from years ago, and in ‘Til Death Do Us Part. It will be up to you to disrupt his plans and try to help prevent, or, at the very least, stall Xau-Tak’s arrival.
Coming in February 2019, this is such a huge update that caps off a brilliant trilogy of Elite Dungeons. There’s lots of new rewards planned, and whilst I can’t say what they will be, I can say that they will be at least as impactful as the tier 92 gear released in the other two dungeons. And, just like those, it’s suitable for 1-3 players and it’s fully repeatable, with other sub-bosses lurking about to have a pop at you. The Ambassador is waiting for you in the Shadow Reef, and Xau-Tak looms behind.
Mining and Smithing
This is so close to being finished! We’re delighted to announce that there will be a full, feature-complete Mining & Smithing beta test in November. It'll be an open beta, available to all members, and you'll be able to copy your own character across. Make sure you log on and try it out, because your feedback is really important. This is the most player-influenced project we've ever made. Just this week we've been improving drop tables to resolve your concerns that the changes we've made are nerfs.
Even more importantly, we can confirm Mining & Smithing will get a full release in January 2019, as part of the first update of the year. This gives us enough time to run the beta test and make any needed changes, based on the feedback you give us.
At the heart of the rework is this problem: Rune Armour takes level 85 smithing to make, but only level 50 defence to wear. We're fixing that and lowering the mining and smithing requirements for all existing metals so they match their combat requirements. Rune will require level 50 to mine, level 50 to smith and level 50 to use.
Of course, that leaves the top half of the skill empty, so we've added in four new tiers of metal and armour to mine, smith and use including Necronium (level 70) and the Elder Rune (level 90). Some of you will also remember three other tiers of armour called Necrite, Invictum and Aetherium from an earlier version of this update. Those armours will also be available in the rework as cosmetic overrides.
That's not all though. The mining skill will still feel exactly like mining, but we've some substantial improvements. To start with, rocks don't deplete now. That means competition for rocks is gone, so rather than fearing the sight of other players, maybe you can mine together and enjoy each other's company! It also means that you can AFK mine now, although there are other mechanics to reward you for clicking more frequently and paying attention.
You'll be able to get the new ore box item, either by smithing it or buying it from another player. As long as it has been upgraded to the right tier, this box allows you to store 100 of each type of ore, meaning you can make much longer mining runs before you need to bank. You may not even need to bank though, because we're adding a special new metal bank which can be accessed from any anvil or furnace. This bank stores up to 2 BILLION of each ore and bar, freeing up a bunch of your regular bank space.
The smithing skill has also been improved. The metal bank isn't just for mining - you can smelt and smith using bars straight out of the metal bank. You'll also be able to upgrade your armour. This uses additional bars and creates slightly better equipment within the same tier. Upgrading gives faster XP than smithing, so you can choose a smithing strategy to optimise getting XP, making money, or some balance of the two. We've rebuilt the Artisan's Workshop so it'll be the main hub for smithing.
Smithing won't just be making tiered armour for levelling. At 99 smithing you'll unlock the ability to make Masterwork armour. This is tier 90 power armour, as good as Malevolent, made entirely through the mining and smithing skills.
For Iron Men that means you get skilling access to top quality armour, but it's maybe not so useful if you're already geared up. However, we've got you covered as well, because you'll be able to take your tier 90 Masterwork armour, combine it with PVM drops and make a set of tier 92 trimmed Masterwork armour. This power armour will be the best melee armour in the game, and as it requires input from skilling and PVM it should share the wealth around between those communities. Unlike Malevolent armour, it degrades to broken so it's a long-term investment.
Christmas Quest – Violet Is Blue
We know the Hallowe’en update is only just arriving, but with winter very much coming that also means it’s time to look ahead to the Christmas update!
As ‘Til Death To Us Part very much errs on the dramatic, we felt Christmas could do with being slightly less intense. As with Broken Home a few years ago, we've taken most of the Christmas update budget and used it to make a permanent new quest rather than a temporary event. Because it's permanent, you could at some stage down the line be playing it in the middle of summer, so it won't be overtly Christmassy. But it will be seasonal! There'll be snow, family and celebration… but there won't be Santa hats and reindeer.
It's been ten years since the quest Myths of the White Lands launched, and to celebrate that incredible milestone we're going back to the Land of Snow for our new quest, Violet is Blue.
This is Violet. Violet is a yeti, or at least, she thinks she's a yeti. Her parents, who actually are yetis, found a tiny human baby lost in the snow, adopted her, and have been raising her ever since. The problem is, Violet is six now and she's insistent that it's time to visit Yeti Town and see all the other yetis.
That's where you come in. Her mum and dad don't know what humans like, so they need your help in making her trip the most magical adventure it can be. It's a puzzle quest, but with a twist. You need to get Violet from A-to-B, but you can't just remove the obstacles from her path. You need to resolve every situation in a way which ensures that her journey is one to remember.
For example, if you come across a dangerously icy lake, your job isn't just to get Violet safely across it. You need to get her across in a way which is super awesome and fun, like hiding her in a barrel and rolling it over the ice.
This is a seasonal quest, so it'll be a novice quest with no requirements, but there will be additional post-quest XP available for high level players to make sure it's well worth your time.
In addition to the permanent quest, we want to make sure that there's plenty of official Christmas content as well. So we'll be bringing back and tidying up some past content and giving it a new home at the grand exchange. The giant cracker is back, and there'll be a few other skilling activities to play over the Christmas period. Those activities will give better XP if you've completed the quest, so make sure you get on it as soon as it's released.
The festive aura will be available as always giving you extra XP every day, and the Advent Calendar will be returning so make sure you claim your free prize every day in December. Finally, Winter Weekends will be back. Mini-games, gathering and combat will be returning, with the addition of new content like Safecracking and Solak. We also have three brand new weekends, featuring Deep Sea Fishing, Elite Dungeons and the Player Owned Farm.
As you can see, Christmas is going to be parupa-pum-pumping.
Back at the April Game Jam we foolishly asked what you all wanted the from our designers, and the number one project that stood out was new Alchemical Onyx items. We’re happy to announce that the items we designed together as a community are finally on their way.
Grace of the Elves is a new non-degradable necklace designed to help you out whilst skilling. It lets you:
- Store up to 500 charges of Sign of the Porter by using porters on the necklace. It will act like a Sign of the Porter whilst worn and charged.
- Teleport to where your Skilling portals are directed inside the Max Guild garden. And if you don’t have access, you have a one-off attunement that must be retuned at the garden.
- Reduce the drain rate of Seren prayers like Lightform and Superheat form.
- Whilst skilling, you have a chance to roll on the Rare Drop Table. Yes, this means that if you wear Luck of the Dwarves and the Grace of the Elves, you have a chance at getting a Hazelmere’s Signet Ring.
The second item is the Ingenuity of Humans, which was previously called Lucky Strike. It is a new sigil that allows your next hit to be a guaranteed hit:
- It degrades with use and requires Fortunate components to recharge
- It works with abilities and spells, allowing players to use Vulnerability or a Statius Warhammer whilst using a different style.
Passage of the Abyss is a pocket-slot item that can hold up to six different compacted jewellery all in one item! No need to carry around all of those teleports – now you can do it in a single item:
- Can store up to six of any of the compacted jewellery made from Invention like Amulet of Glory or Ring of Duelling.
- Passage of the Abyss can be recoloured so that you can have multiple and have different teleports on each item.
- Teleporting with Passage of the Abyss degrades the item and can be recharged with Fortunate components.
All of this will be on its way in the coming months. We’re incredibly excited to fill out the Alchemical Onyx suite of items, a design that was forged together between Jagex and the community.
We have an absolute bounty of new achievements heading your way in November. We recently added the RuneScore HiScore tables for you achievement hunters to get your teeth into. And now we want to add a huge swathe of new Runescore for you to unlock.
We’re going to be focusing on achievements for skillers to try, and match some of the quantity of PvM achievements. Obviously it wouldn’t be RuneScape without adding some fun achievements for you to discover and play around with, such as…
Dragonstone Dragonstone Dragonstone – Kill a dragonstone dragon, whilst wearing the dragonstone armour and all dragonstone jewellery, using dragonstone bolts and an inventory full of dragonstones. I’m not sure if the word dragonstone makes any sense any more to me but there you have it! That’s an example of one of silly achievements that we’re adding as part of the bonanza.
An example of something for the skillers include:
Livid – Throw a rotten tomato at Pauline Polaris in New Varrock after having unlocked all Livid Farm spells.
Smartest Harvest – Harvesting 10 Wood or Fruit trees in under four minutes.
Oh and just one more silly achievement which I’m sure that no-one has ever done in their RuneScape career:
I Meant To Do That – Surge a distance of one tile.
Good news – we’re going to be running another Game Jam in two weeks’ time! We love taking part in Game Jams, and there have been so many memorable updates to come from Game Jams over the past two years such as the Luck Rework, Skybox filters, Needle Skips, custom login screens and the buff bar update just to name a few!
Starting October 18th, we have a number of themes we want to get stuck into including reducing Dailyscape, increasing combat diversity and tidying up areas of the game such as the removal of Mobilising Armies, which is coming soon.
RuneScape Members Mobile Beta - 8th October!
Oh, and did you hear? The official RuneScape Mobile Members Beta starts on October 8th! It’s limited access so you’ll need to get in there quick, and we will announce it on the RuneScape homepage the second it launches on the Google Play store. There’s no sign-up for this – it’s first come first served, so get your Android devices ready on that day to log in and play! There are only 25,000 spaces in this first release, In case you miss the first batch of entries, don't worry - we will be adding more periodically over the next few weeks.
As you know, feedback from the players is the lifeblood of everything we do, so we want to know what you think. This is your chance to play RuneScape, the game you know and love, absolutely anywhere! We’ve seen Telos defeated several times today on the mobile devices, so really, anything’s possible, anywhere.
The RuneScape Team