RuneScape Review: A Look Into RuneScape

By Jason Gallienne (Jrgsubzero), Onrpg writer

Many different thoughts come up when the word ‘RuneScape’ is spoken. Well, I’m here to share my thought on this game and try to give an unbiased review as well a deep look into this world.

Graphics Underwhelming

First, let’s talk about the most discussed subject about the game. That’s right, the graphics. While the graphics are nothing compared to today’s high detailed monsters, RuneScape continues to hold its charm and style even though it had its graphics overhaul last November .

The graphics have undergone many of these overhauls and Jagex continues to make small changes to them as the days go by. The most recent minor change was done on April 1st to an NPC named King Vargas.

The game also has very low system requirements and no download is required, so you may run this game from any computer that has internet.

The animations, while not the best, get the job done. Some might be clunky looking (chopping wood for example) but some of the special attack animations are impressive.

Old-school audio

The sound effects in this game aren’t the most realistic. The combat twangs and clanks sound alright but when something gets hurt or is dying it can sound pretty weird. The life skill sounds hit the mark most of the time. I personally really like the sound when you mine ore.

The music is wonderful. The tracks convey emotions with what seems to be simple melodies. It’s not an  over-the-top orchestra but it has that old-school feel that some might appreciate. As you go places you unlock the tracks that play there and you can listen to them anytime by using the jukebox feature on your screen.

A Varied Life

The best feature of RuneScape is the gameplay. From fighting monsters to growing crops, there’s plenty to do. So, let’s talk about combat. You left-click to attack and you will do so with whatever you have equipped. (or with punches and kicks if you have nothing). You can then eat food or drink potions to recover your health, switch fighting styles, change weapons, cast spells, or run. You exchange blows automatically and monsters will drop items and/or money upon death. Most enemies will drop bones upon death for you to bury and raise your prayer skill.

Upon death, you will keep your three most valuable items according to alchemy cost. Alchemy cost is how much gold you create when you cast a spell called “Alchemy” on an item (which transmutes it). This means if an item has an alchemy cost of say, 100k, but it’s worth 10mil on the Auction House, then it will only be worth 100k when considering it as your three most valuable items. No matter how much gold you collected, when you die it is counted as one gold piece. This goes for all stackable items. So, if you have three items on you, it’s safe to say you will lose all your gold upon death. Prayer can be leveled to use the protect item prayer which lets you keep one extra item.

There are three types of way to kill a monster: with melee, magic, or ranged attacks. You start off with a simple sword and shield, a bow and arrows, and a couple runes to cast spells with. Talking to the different tutors will grant you these items and other tools to help you make your living in the world.

Fighting styles often come in four flavors depending on what type of weapons you have equipped. For melee the style aggressive raises strength, accurate which gives attack experience (or exp), block which accumulates defense exp, and controlled which gives all three exp at a lower rate. You gain +3 in each stat (character statistic) depending on which style you choose, +1 to each if you’re using controlled.

In the Ranged skill the style deemed accurate will raise ranged exp, rapid makes you attack faster and also gives ranged exp, or long range lets you gain ranged and defense but at a split cost. Your exp for melee and ranged is calculated by your damage x 4 = exp.

For magic, you get the three basic weapon styles on your staff, plus two auto-cast styles which automatically cast a selected spell when you click a monster. One is regular and one is defensive so it can raise your defense exp as well. You gain magic experience even if you “Miss” and how much experience you get is based on the spell itself.

Now Onto Skills

This is one of the greatest features of RuneScape, as it stands at this moment in time free-to-play players have access to 15 skills while members have access to all 24. In order to level up a skill you must perform the related action, for example if you chop a tree you get woodcutting experience. This is different from most games where you obtain skills at certain levels. Here, your total level is determined by the sum of all of your skill levels. The more important combat level is calculated by how high your combat skills are and is your basis on judging how strong you are. This does not mean you have to dive into combat. You can live happily in RuneScape by only chopping trees, making fires, cooking the fish you catch, and selling them. There is no limit to how many skills you can raise so if you strive for it you can raise all of them to the max!

If you wish to read up on all the skills that RuneScape has to offer please visit the manual.

The Ring of Honor

PVP in this game is handled differently than most. There are certain worlds marked as PVP. In these worlds you can be attacked anywhere at any time as long as you’re outside a safe zone (a place where you cannot be attacked by anyone. You spawn here when you first enter a PVP world. Safe zones and PVP zones are designated by an icon on your screen). Also, you’re still flagged even if you run into a safe zone for 10 seconds. Normal death rules apply except if you’re ‘skulled’. You become skulled if you’re the first to initiate combat. If you’re skulled, you drop everything. When you kill another player you don’t get what they were wearing but rather a market value item of the wealth they were carrying. How long you’ve been pvp-ing and the wealth you’re carrying also affects what will drop.

Alongside this there are PVP mini-games. Such as Castle-war, Clan-wars, and Duel arenas. In Castle wars you choose red or blue and it’s like a ‘capture the flag’ game. But with catapults, barricade building, and other things. No death penalty. Clan-wars is just as it sounds. 1-100 combatants on each side. You can choose to have a safe match or a death penalty match. In Duel Arenas players challenge each other can set rules such as: no running, no magic, no melee, no prayer, no food, etc. You may stake items in this mode and there’s no death penalty.

Your friends and neighbors

The community has its own share of very helpful people to its scamming scum. The game offers forums for use by members and F2Pers who have earned 12.5m experience total. There is also quick-chat servers where players can only talk using a quick-chat system if you wish to avoid undesirables or to just have a quieter run through the game.

A place for everybody

There are different server types for different needs. PVP, Trade, Quick chat, and Normal are the common types. Some servers are used for specific activities as marked by the world list. Such as house parties, Castle wars, Role-playing, and many more.

And to wrap it all up

Overall, I would recommend this game for at least one play-through. I also highly advise you find or make a friend who knows his way around this world, as it can be daunting at first.

Plenty of skills to keep you busy
– Easy to run on most computers and no download required so you can play from almost anywhere

– Graphics (if you care about them)
– Can be overwhelming for new players
– Community can be unfriendly

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