RuneScape is a Java-programmed MMORPG made by Jagex. With over 9mil free players and more than 850k paying members, RuneScape is among the most popular online games in the world. RuneScape offers both free and subscription content and is supposed to be accessible from any location with an Internet connection, the farther away, the more lag you receive.
RuneScape is divided into the Kingdoms of Misthalin, Asgarnia, and Kandarin, the tropical island Karamja, the Kharidian Desert, the Wilderness, and some other areas. Players can travel throughout the game world on foot, using magical teleportation, gnome gliders, spirit trees, fairy rings, and other methods of transport. Each place has different types of monsters, materials, and quests to entertain and challenge players.
Players can engage in combat with other players or with monsters, complete quests, or increase their experience in any of the available skills. Players can also interact with each other through trading, chatting, or playing mini-games.
New players begin in a secluded area populated only by other beginners, Tutorial Island. They are led on a set path where they learn most of the skills needed to succeed into the real game. In this tutorial, you can get all the non-member skills up apart from RuneCrafting and Crafting. After completing the tutorial, players can access information from tutors located in the towns they explore. These NPCs can replace some basic equipment items if necessary. Since it takes many hours to develop a character, many players regard playing RuneScape as a lifestyle, not a side activity. Playing RuneScape can be addictive, and some people play RuneScape more than they do anything else, like, unfortunately, me.
Jagex has included music, sound effects, and ambient noises throughout Gielinor to enhance gameplay. The music, while often a simple tune, is designed to enhance mood and help to define the underlying cultures of the various locations around Gielinor. Sound effects, such as the "sploosh" heard when a lobster trap is submerged in water, are heard as players train their skills. Ambient noises, such as the cry of seagulls flying over the ocean, occur in logical places. Players can turn the music and sounds off if they prefer.
Skills in RuneScape are abilities that enable players to perform activities in the game. Players gain experience in a skill when they perform activities that utilise that skill, such as mining ore from a rock to increase the mining skill. In general, the higher the level required to perform a task, the more experience points the player receives, the faster they can complete the activity, and the more desirable the result. The combined skill level of a player partly symbolises the player's status in the game. The RuneScape hiscores tables can be viewed by all players, and players with higher overall levels are well known.
RuneScape has 23 trainable skills in four categories: combat (attack, strength, defence, magic, ranged, prayer, and hitpoints); extraction (mining, fishing, woodcutting, thieving, and farming); processing (smithing, cooking, crafting, runecrafting, fletching, and herblore); and independent (firemaking, agility, construction, slayer, and hunter).
Combat is an important aspect of the gameplay in RuneScape, as it is one of the most direct ways of gaining wealth and is needed to start and complete many quests. Combat level, determined by applying a formula to the seven combat skills, is usually referred to simply as "level". The highest combat level is 126 and it is the only information about the player that is visible to other players while in game apart from their username. Other skill levels increase total levels and overall rankings for players, but not their combat levels.
Combat is subdivided into melee, magic, and ranged categories. Melee attacks are close range with or without weapons, magic attacks focus on using runestones to cast spells, and ranged moves use projectile weapons. Most of the game's weapons are medieval or fantastical in nature and feature different strengths and weaknesses.
Unlike other games in the genre, RuneScape does not require players to choose a character class. Players are not bound to a specific category of combat, and they may freely change between all three forms of combat at any time simply by switching weapons, armours, or methods of attack. Players can even carry the weapons and armours of the three combat categories in their inventories, switching between or even combining the forms at will.
Quests give players the opportunity to experience adventures within the realm of RuneScape. Most quests require specific experience in skills or combat. Quests are divided into four categories according to difficulty. Novice quests act as tutorials to acquaint new players with the various skills and abilities they will need to succeed in the game. Intermediate quests are designed for players who seek harder obstacles, while experienced and master quests are designed to challenge RuneScape's most experienced players. Many master quests open up new areas of RuneScape to be explored.
Quests include rewards upon completion that depend on the difficulty of the quest. Rewards often include money, items, access to an area, or an increase in skill experience. Quest points are also awarded based on the difficulty of the quest. As demonstration of a player's prior accomplishments and ability, a specific number of quest points or the completion of specific quests are often required to begin a quest, enter a specific area, access some skills, or use special weapons. Some quests are part of an overlapping storyline, the most famous of which has been in RuneScape for several years and currently contains seven separate quests. There are currently about 20 quests available to free players and about 100 additional members quests.
Many non-player characters (NPCs) populate the realm of RuneScape. Although some NPCs, such as shopkeepers, have game functions that require them to be unavailable for combat, most NPCs can be attacked. Attackable NPCs are generally referred to as monsters, regardless of their race. Monsters range from common, low level creatures like chickens and bears to unique, much more powerful monsters like the King Black Dragon, Chaos Elemental, or Kalphite Queen. Each type of monster has its own strengths and weaknesses. Demons, for example, have low defence against magical attacks while dragons have extremely high defence against magic. Monsters may also be aggressive (attacking any player who comes within range, regardless of combat level), non-aggressive (not attacking players unless provoked, regardless of combat levels), or partially aggressive (attacking only those players whose combat level is twice theirs or less). This can make certain areas within the game dangerous to players depending upon their own combat levels.
RuneScape features independent mini-games for its players. Mini-games take place in certain areas and normally involve a specific skill. Mini-games usually require players to cooperate or to compete with each other. Popular mini-games include Castle Wars, which is similar to the real-life game Capture the Flag, and Pest Control.
Players can fight against other players in player versus player (PvP) combat in certain areas of RuneScape. The most common place is in the Wilderness, where players risk their lives, but more importantly their items, challenging other players. Players can engage in PvP combat without risking their items in mini-games such as Castle Wars and the TzHaar Fight Pits, and in combat arenas or dungeons in player owned houses. In the Duel Arena, players must agree on the rules of engagement and the stake before combat between them begins.
Random events are short interludes that occur during the game, requiring some form of player input. They were introduced to deter players from using automated programs, known as macros or bots, to play the game with no human interaction. The use of such macros is forbidden and will result in the permanent ban of accounts found to be using them. Postings in the RuneScape forums by Andrew Gower suggest that random events were designed not only to hinder macroers but to alleviate the monotony that can occur while leveling skills for long periods of time (referred to as grinding).
Some random events are simple, requiring a player only to click on an NPC or to leave the area temporarily; others require more sophisticated actions from players, who must respond to these events quickly and correctly to avoid a negative effect, such as being teleported across the map or taking damage. Players are usually rewarded for responding correctly to random events.
Three random events have been removed from the game by Jagex: The Watchmancitation needed
, Tangle Vine, and Dr. Ford. The purpose for their removal varies, from the event being too dangerous to players, simply causing a sum of graphical problems, or just being a major inconveniece to any player who gets that random event.
RuneScape is, as many people admit, highly addicting and is what most people call relatively fun. It is, in my opinion, interesting and a great way to pass time when you are nervous or bored.