Runescape Gold Strategy Guide

By Lesley Harrison
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About this book

Making money in Runescape is challenging, but vitally important if you want to get the best equipment for your character. Whether you’re interested in Player vs Player combat, high level dungeons, or just role-playing in cool clothes, you need money to achieve your goals.

"Runescape Gold Strategy Guide" is the unofficial guide to legitimately making millions in the RuneScape MMORPG. Once you have learned the skills and techniques in the book you will be equipped to level up faster, earn quicker, and enjoy the game more. Learn where to find the best places to train your skills, what items to buy and when, and how to avoid scammers taking all your money! The book covers gold earning topics such as gathering, crafting and trading in depth.

Publication date:
June 2012
Publisher
Packt
Pages
166
ISBN
9781849692908

 

Chapter 1. Can I Ever Afford 8 Million Gold for a Dragon Pickaxe?

RuneScape is one of the few Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) on the market that has managed to survive through a complete overhaul, retaining a huge community of players ranging from young teens to college students and even retirees.

Part of the appeal of RuneScape is the flexibility of the game. Those playing on free-to-play worlds have several professions to choose from, and thousands of hours worth of content to enjoy. The pay-to-play worlds have an even bigger range of professions and quests, and there's something for everyone to do, whether you dream of being a woodcutter, a chef, a dungeoneer, or a dominant force in player versus player combat.

Of course, all of the best stuff in the game costs gold. If you want to have the best weapons and armour then you'll need millions of gold. The coveted Dragon Chain Armour Set costs 4.5 million on the Grand Exchange, and some weapons command even higher prices. Even collectible items, such as the Party Hats and Party Crackers can make a sizeable dent in your wallet, but while the numbers look huge, they aren't impossible to achieve. This guide will explain how you can make money without turning the game into a chore.

But first, there's a little groundwork to cover. This chapter will help you get started earning gold in RuneScape in as hassle-free a way as possible:

  • The best way to play RuneScape

  • Tools to make playing easier

  • Protecting your account

  • Useful links

So let's get started...

The best way to play RuneScape

One of the things that makes RuneScape so popular is that you can play it from anywhere. Most people are introduced to RuneScape through the browser-based client, and that's certainly a handy way to play, but for serious play sessions the browser can be a little too cluttered.

There are several standalone clients available. Jagex (the developers of Runescape), released an official stand-alone client which can be downloaded from:

http://www.runescape.com/

The official standalone client is pretty simple. The main benefits of using it are the ability to launch RuneScape directly from your desktop through a shortcut, and not having to worry about the clutter of a browser window:

Using SwiftKit to gain the upper hand

If you're looking for something a little more sophisticated, there are many independently-developed standalone clients. One of the more popular ones is SwiftKit, which can be downloaded from http://www.swiftkit.net.

SwiftKit is a free download. It is ad-supported, but the advertisements are discrete, and don't get in the way of the game.

SwiftKit's client includes:

  • A skill calculator

  • Play stats and highscore tools

  • A built-in IRC client

  • A screenshot tool

  • An atlas, armory, and an item database

  • A server status tool

The following screenshot shows an example SwitfKit window, with the item database running:

In the screenshot, the right-hand pane contains tabs for looking up characters, accessing a calculator and a world clock tool, and working with screenshots as well as allowing you to manage music playlists, access web pages, and search the item database. This is much more convenient than having to juggle several different browser windows, or separate applications for each task. The main pane can be used as a basic web browser, or as the game interface.

SwiftKit is ideal for people who like to craft, trade items on the market, run dungeons, or Player versus Player (PVP) . Once you've used it for a while you'll find it hard to go back to juggling several different applications and browser windows.

Why use IRC?

If you're wondering why you'd ever want an IRC client, well, there are some great RuneScape IRC communities out there, as well as communities for sites, such as Wikia (the hosts of one of the better Runescape wikis). Hanging out in IRC is a great way to meet fellow players, swap tips, and just chat with people for a few minutes when you don't have time to actually log in and play the game.

For more information about IRC, check out the IRC article on the RuneScape Wiki (http://runescape.wikia.com/wiki/IRC).

 

The best way to play RuneScape


One of the things that makes RuneScape so popular is that you can play it from anywhere. Most people are introduced to RuneScape through the browser-based client, and that's certainly a handy way to play, but for serious play sessions the browser can be a little too cluttered.

There are several standalone clients available. Jagex (the developers of Runescape), released an official stand-alone client which can be downloaded from:

http://www.runescape.com/

The official standalone client is pretty simple. The main benefits of using it are the ability to launch RuneScape directly from your desktop through a shortcut, and not having to worry about the clutter of a browser window:

Using SwiftKit to gain the upper hand

If you're looking for something a little more sophisticated, there are many independently-developed standalone clients. One of the more popular ones is SwiftKit, which can be downloaded from http://www.swiftkit.net.

SwiftKit is a free download. It is ad-supported, but the advertisements are discrete, and don't get in the way of the game.

SwiftKit's client includes:

  • A skill calculator

  • Play stats and highscore tools

  • A built-in IRC client

  • A screenshot tool

  • An atlas, armory, and an item database

  • A server status tool

The following screenshot shows an example SwitfKit window, with the item database running:

In the screenshot, the right-hand pane contains tabs for looking up characters, accessing a calculator and a world clock tool, and working with screenshots as well as allowing you to manage music playlists, access web pages, and search the item database. This is much more convenient than having to juggle several different browser windows, or separate applications for each task. The main pane can be used as a basic web browser, or as the game interface.

SwiftKit is ideal for people who like to craft, trade items on the market, run dungeons, or Player versus Player (PVP) . Once you've used it for a while you'll find it hard to go back to juggling several different applications and browser windows.

Why use IRC?

If you're wondering why you'd ever want an IRC client, well, there are some great RuneScape IRC communities out there, as well as communities for sites, such as Wikia (the hosts of one of the better Runescape wikis). Hanging out in IRC is a great way to meet fellow players, swap tips, and just chat with people for a few minutes when you don't have time to actually log in and play the game.

For more information about IRC, check out the IRC article on the RuneScape Wiki (http://runescape.wikia.com/wiki/IRC).

 

Free versus paid


RuneScape is free to play, and as a free player you are allowed to access Free to Play (F2P) worlds, and can max out all of the skills that are open to free players. There's no limit on the level you can get in those skills. However, free players are restricted in terms of the quests that they can do, the areas they have access to, and the list of skills that they can train for, as well as the items that they can equip. They are also not permitted to log on to the Pay to Play (P2P) worlds. There's still a lot to do in the F2P worlds, and it would take a long time to exhaust all of the content available to F2P members, but the breadth and depth of content available to paying members is even bigger.

The F2P worlds tend to have more botters (people who use computer programs to automate the process of gaining experience and earning money) and real money traders (people who sell RuneScape gold for real life money), as the players responsible are able to create new accounts for free whenever the old ones get banned. If you want to play in a controlled environment, with a more exclusive community, then paying the membership fee is a good idea. You can purchase time cards for RuneScape from most major game retailers, or you can pay through www.Runescape.com using a credit or debit card or a Paypal account. At the time of writing, a one month Runescape subscription cost £4.95 (or $7.95) per month, with three months available for £13.75 ($21.95), and six months for £24.95 ($39.95).

Free to play members get access to the following skills:

Skill

Description

Attack

A basic combat skill used to determine your ability in melee combat, and the type of weapons you may use.

Strength

A basic combat skill used to determine your ability in melee combat and the type of weapons you may use.

Defense

A basic combat skill used to determine how easy you are to hit, and what types of armour you may wear.

Dungeoneering

This skill is used to access dungeons in Runescape. The higher your dungeoneering skill, the more dungeons you may access.

Ranged

A basic combat skill that determines your ability to use ranged weapons.

Prayer

The prayer skill gives you access to a range of useful buffs that can give you an advantage in combat.

Magic

The Magic skill gives you access to a range of useful spells including damaging spells, that can hit multiple targets, teleport abilities, and more. Magic spells consume runes when they are cast.

Runecrafting

Runecrafting allows players to make runes that are used in the casting of magic spells.

Constitution

This is a basic ability that determines the number of life points a player has.

Crafting

Skill at making a range of useful items including staves, amulets, pots, and jewellery.

Mining

Skill at mining ores. Higher skills allow you to mine more precious ores.

Smithing

Skill at working with ores to produce a range of items, including some used by other tradeskills.

Fishing

Skill at catching fish for use in cooking. Higher skill allows you to catch a wider range of fish.

Cooking

Skill at cooking foods. Higher skill unlocks a wider range of recipes.

Firemaking

Skill at making fires for use in cooking.

Woodcutting

Skill at chopping trees to get wood for crafting and firemaking. Higher levels allow you to chop down a wider variety of trees.

Training in some skills is slower and/or harder on F2P worlds, because there are fewer training methods available. This means that some players consider levelling certain skills on a free account to be a badge of honour, rather than being embarrassed that they did not have a member's account at the time.

F2P players can attain a combat level of 126, which is slightly lower than the combat level that the paying members can achieve. Combat level is discussed in detail in Chapter 2, Making Earning Easier.

When you become a member, you get access to another nine skills. They are listed as follows:

Skill

Description

Agility

Players with high agility regain energy more quickly than players that have not trained the agility skill.

Herblore

Herblore allows you to make your own potions.

Thieving

This skill allows you to pick the pockets of non-player characters, and steal from stalls.

Fletching

Fletching is the skill of making bows and arrows, for use with the ranged skill.

Slayer

Slayer is a skill that allows members to kill rare and unusual monsters that are otherwise immune to being damaged. Slayer is trained by performing tasks assigned by Slayer Masters.

Farming

Farming allows you to grow vegetables, which can be used by people training the cooking skill.

Construction

Construction allows you to build and customize your own house. Houses aren't just decorative; you can build a chapel, dungeon, and portal chamber, which are useful for training other skills.

Hunter

Hunting is the skill of tracking and capturing animals. Some animals are caught for their fur or bones, while others can be tamed as pets.

Summoning

Summoning allows players to call upon familiars, including dogs, reptiles, birds, and other creatures.

P2P members are able to use more equipment, and access worlds that are available only to people who have an active subscription. P2P members are able to achieve a combat level of 138, thanks to their ability to train the Summoning skill.

In general, it's easier for members to level up skills, and to make money, although F2P players do have some earning potential at higher skill levels. Even F2P players can cut yew logs at a decent pace once their Woodcutting skill gets high enough, for example.

If you're creating a new character, you could run them through the Beginner's quests on a free world, and subscribe once you've got to a high enough level in the basic skills that you feel like you're missing out on content and equipment.

 

Useful tools to improve your RuneScape experience


So, you can't legally automate your levelling or your earning, but that doesn't mean that you can't make use of the power of your computer, and the community, to speed things up.

The following tools aren't expressly RuneScape related, but they are useful for gamers in general, and they're free to download too:

  • Teamspeak 3 (http://www.teamspeak.com): This handy tool lets you join a Teamspeak server and chat with other users. It's popular with many clans (groups of players that tend to play together to work towards a common goal), as it's faster and easier to talk over voice communications than it is to communicate through text.

  • Ventrillo (http://www.ventrillo.com): Ventrillo is another popular voice communications tool. Teamspeak seems to be taking over in popularity at the moment, but Ventrillo is still used by many older clans.

  • r Libre Office (http://www.libreoffice.org): If you want to be able to make use of all those nifty character spreadsheets and resource gathering/crafting efficiency calculators, then you'll need a decent spreadsheet. Why pay for Microsoft Office when Libre Office is free?

  • Fraps (http://www.fraps.com): Fraps is a great tool for recording videos, set it off when you're about to reach 99 skill or get into a great PVP fight, and upload the results for instant YouTube fame. You can also use Fraps for taking screenshots, and monitoring the performance of your games.

  • Firefox and Greasemonkey (http://www.getfirefox.net): The Greasemonkey plugin for Firefox can be used for a lot of purposes, and there are several good RuneScape scripts available for it. If you plan on playing RuneScape in a browser window, then this is a must-have.

  • The RuneScape Game Bar (http://www.runescape.com/g=runescape/downloads.ws): if you use Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer as your main browser, you may find this new browser toolbar useful. It's an official application, created by Jagex, and it offers one-click access to Runescape, reminders for game events, and an easy way to keep track of the Grand Exchange.

In addition to this list, it's a good idea to get a decent firewall and antivirus application. Popular options include:

There are many other options, the above are just a few suggestions. Pick one, and make sure that you keep it up-to-date and running at all times. Don't install more than one anti-virus or firewall application. Installing more than one won't give you double the security. There's a good chance the two applications could conflict with each other, causing unexpected (and annoying) results!

Protecting your account

Whenever a game becomes popular, an entire industry of scammers and account thieves springs up around it, but scamming isn't the only way that you can lose your account. Protecting your account from scammers and hackers will be discussed in detail in Chapter 6, Avoiding scams, but for now, we're concerned with the risk of getting your account banned, or your password stolen.

You've probably seen some of the software being advertised for Runescape — bots, trainers, auto-miners, auto-typers, helpers, macros, and character editors. You should stay away from this software. Most of those programs don't work at all (they're designed purely as a way to steal people's account details), and the ones that do work are against the rules, and could well get you banned.

That's not to say that all RuneScape tools are bad, there are a lot of useful applications designed to help people play RuneScape smartly and easily. So, how can you tell which tools are ok, and which to stay away from?

If it looks too good to be true

If some software promises to instantly level your character, give you gold, or give you equipment, then it is a scam. Some scammers produce some very sophisticated videos that look convincing, but those videos are not taken on the real RuneScape servers.

Some software promises to automate the playing of the game, freeing you up to do other things. Botting is against the terms of service that you agree to when you sign up for a RuneScape account. If some software promises to chop wood, kill NPCs, make items, or post messages in chat for you without you having to be at the keyboard controlling it, then Jagex won't like it. You may get away with it for a while, but eventually you will get caught, and when you do, you will most likely lose your account. Is that really worth the risk?

So what is safe to use?

In general, the only things that are safe to use are calculators, planners, databases, and clients with cosmetic skins. If you're thinking of downloading a client that is not the official Jagex one, it's best to look for ones that are open source and that have been around for a long time.

There's always the risk of unofficial clients breaking if Jagex make major changes to the game. So if you want a hassle-free gaming experience, it's best to stick to either the official client, or a well-maintained one, such as SwiftKit, but if you're feeling adventurous, then those unofficial clients are a good starting point.

Whenever you download an application, virus check it, and also spend a few seconds thinking about what the software is supposed to do. If it's just a calculator, or a searchable quest guide, then you should be suspicious if it asks you for your password.

In general, it pays to be paranoid. It's better to miss out on the next big money maker and keep your account than it is to lose your account to a scam.

 

Useful links


While most of the information you need can be accessed from within a tool, such as SwiftKit, it's still a good idea to bookmark (and make a mental note of) some of the more popular RuneScape community sites. The game is always evolving, and community sites are a big source of up-to-the minute information.

Some of the more useful sites are listed as follows:

  • RuneScape Forums (http://www.runescape.com): The official RuneScape forums should be your first port of call for information about recent announcements, to ask for tips and advice, and to meet other players. If you're not a member of a clan yet, then why not browse the forums and find one to join?

  • RuneHQ (http://www.runehq.com): The Runescape wing of the Global Gaming HQ network, RuneHQ has skill guides, quest guides, mini-game tips, and more.

  • RuneScape Wiki (http://runescape.wikia.com): Wikia's gaming wikis are maintained by volunteers from the gaming community. The RuneScape wiki has a huge amount of information on it.

  • RuneTips (http://www.tip.it/runescape): This Runescape tips site has a lot of useful calculators and planners, XP tables, and other information that will be helpful for planning your character.

  • Zybez Runescape Help (http://www.zybez.net): The Zybez database provides a wealth of information about the different items that are available in the game, including what they do, whether they can be traded, where you get them from, and how to get them. There are similar databases for NPCs and quests, as well as combat and skill calculators. The Zybez forums are a good source of money-making advice.

 

Summary


This chapter was just a brief introduction to the world of RuneScape. If you've been playing for a while then you probably already knew a lot of the information in this chapter, but hopefully you will have still found something useful.

In this chapter you learned the following:

  • All about alternative clients

  • The differences between free and paid accounts

  • About a few must-have free tools for gamers

  • What popular tools are used by online gamers

  • How to keep your account safe

In the next chapter, you'll learn about character levels and combat levels, the difference between F2P and P2P worlds, and how to start earning some money! We will focus on P2P money earning strategies for most of this book, but some of the techniques will suit F2P players too, or at the very least should be easy enough to adapt if necessary.

About the Author

  • Lesley Harrison

    Lesley Harrison is an avid gamer who has enjoyed playing a range of online games at a competitive level, from the first MUDs to today's spectacular AAA experiences with 3D graphics. Today, Lesley runs her own video gaming company, Myth Games, and works as a freelance web developer. Lesley has written several books for Packt Publishing, including the WordPress_MU Beginner's Guide and the TortoiseSVN Beginner's Guide. In her spare time Lesley volunteers within several Open Source projects. Away from the computer she recently found a love for Seiken Ryu Karate, and has reached the rank of 2nd Kyu.

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