RuneScape is going to be a regular game for the Diaries From column, published on the last Thursday of each month and covering the entire month’s worth of updates.
1. Prifddinas Part 2 – 9/10
The elven city of Prifddinas has quickly become one of my favorite updates of 2014, and not just because I’ve been waiting for this update ever since it was teased way back in 2004. I went through high school and ended up one semester away from my bachelor’s degree in the time Jagex took to put this update out. There are kids playing RuneScape today who were still in diapers when the city was first teased. It was a really long time ago.
Prifddinas is a giant skilling hub, a place where high level players can theoretically go and virtually never have a reason to leave. There is a ton of content, from pickpocketing elves to finding hidden titles, unlocking pets and other rewards, and I have only managed to scratch the surface.
- Clan Amlodd (Divination and Summoning) – Shadow creatures are useless as a divination training, since they don’t drop cores enough to be a viable alternative. The only time I’ve found myself killing shadow creatures is when a daily task dictates it. Otherwise this area has the convenience of an NPC to trade your summoning pouches in for a small amount of shards to make summoning less of a money sink.
- Clan Ithell (Construction and Crafting) – This is my new favorite area in the game. The harps provide semi-afk crafting training with the bonus reward of harmonic dust that can be used to upgrade your dragon pickaxe and hatchet. Next to the harp room is a big rock containing soft clay next to a potter’s wheel and furnace, making crafting dailies much more convenient. When the area first released, mining the maximum fifty crystal stone per day and turning it into flasks was a great money maker before the market flooded.
- Clan Hefin (Agility and Prayer) – If there is one skill I hate training more than crafting, it’s agility, and this area is right up my alley. I haven’t touched the new agility course, but I should since it is the fastest course and offers various rewards for completing laps. Generally I only have enough patience for agility to grab the twenty thousand (forty if you have bonus exp) agility experience for participating in the daily mini-game. The prayer section is a money sink, for 130,000 gold you can buy and clean crystals for prayer experience. If you are really rich, you can clean thirty stones per hour, spending 3.9 million for 279,000 experience. A much better alternative to buying and grinding bones, if for convenience over price.
- Clan Meilyr (Dungeoneering and Herblore) – I don’t have 95 dungeoneering so I can’t comment on just about anything in this section. Harmony moss is interesting, you buy seeds for 50 thousand, and then plant them on skill-specific posts. The moss grows by gaining experience in the related skill, and the final product can be used in potions or sold for a small profit. I love combination potions since I can finally ditch my super sets, and I like the idea of certain potions requiring you to find the recipe in dungeoneering. It offers an extra incentive to go dungeon diving.
2. Treasure Trail & Community Tools – 8/10
Treasure trails are RuneScape’s treasure hunting mini-game, scrolls found from monsters and through other activities that offer puzzles and clues that must be followed to find rewards. If you’re lucky, you can find insanely expensive equipment/cosmetics. Otherwise you are 99% of the community and find a few low level items for a half hour or so of hunting. I don’t have the logistics to figure out if the rewards are statistically dropping at a better rate, but I like the idea of introducing new and better stuff while removing less desirable rewards.
I’ve found that the majority of players fall into two categories for the player examine feature: those who haven’t touched it and are at the default settings or those who have set their account to private.
3. Heart of Stone Quest – 6/10
I didn’t enjoy this month’s quest. RuneScape’s quest system has been rough ever since Jagex brought the world into the sixth age and made it so each quest set before then is a flashback or a memory or something. Heart of Stone is supposed to be an introductory quest to the elder gods, a topic that if you’ve been keeping up with the quests will seem out of place since your character has marinated in the topic for years. Every once in a while Jagex will go back and bring in a quest to introduce players to a certain idea, throwing consistency into the wind when your character who has known about these topics for years suddenly has no idea what they are.
As an introductory quest, it feels like everyone else is doing the fun stuff. You show up in the quest after all of this interesting stuff happens, and the quest is over before the really interesting stuff will happen, and knowing Jagex the sequel is at least six months away, if not a full year or more.
The first and second batches for Prifddinas are going to keep myself, and many other players, busy for a long time to come. By giving a more tolerable way to train the most intolerable skills, hitting end-game content is looking a lot more realistic.