Greetings, fellow players! Mod Stu here.
I'm happy to announce that a large project I worked on over several gamejams last year is scheduled to release on the 19th of February.
You last heard about this project in July 2023's gamejam roundup.
Starting in December 2022's gamejam, I worked in close collaboration with the RuneScape lore community discord to identify and trim dead branches from the quest requirement tree, keeping the healthy relevant requirements that matter.
Shout-outs to Kobra, Wahisietel, ImRubic, Gaga Lady and many other delightful lorehounds that contributed to the design and review of this project.
I'd like to talk about this concept in more detail, as quest requirements can be quite 'marmite'.
Personally, I love 'em. Quest requirements give structure to your gameplay and goals to work towards.
"But Stu," one might hypothetically cry. "Removing requirements just makes the game easier. Recent quests barely have any requirements as it is. You should be adding more requirements, not less!"
So to cut those concerns off at the (underground) pass, I'm writing this blog.
The Tangled Tree
Surprisingly, a lot of historic quest requirements, especially from the Fifth Age, serve no narrative or functional purpose.
Several requirements were added at the time to drive engagement to other quests (such as a developer's body of work thus far), or to make completing the quest a more legendary feat.
That's an admirable goal in the short term - shouldn't the Legends' Quest require almost every other quest that came before?
But their developers couldn't have anticipated that RuneScape questing would still be building on those foundations in 2024.
As this 2016 diagram provided by Gamez-x illustrates, the quest requirement tree has got... a bit... complicated.
Now, untangling that web of requirements can be a puzzle in itself. (I quite enjoyed doing it myself when I first got quest cape back in the day.)
But a lot of players - especially those that see quests as an obstacle blocking their access to a useful reward - could find this complexity tiring and off-putting.
There's a fine line between having reasonable, manageable goals and feeling so overwhelmed by objectives that it doesn't feel worth the effort.
Moreso, many of our quest requirements just aren't and have never been necessary.
Take the Desert Treasure quest, as an example. (Go on, take it - you need it for ancient magicks, and it's a sequel away from ancient curses.)
This is a quest that most players will want to complete.
Desert Treasure Quest Requirements:
- The Dig Site: Needed for Exam Centre section.
- The Tourist Trap: Only connection is both quests feature the Bedabin camp.
- Temple of Ikov: Only connection is Asgarnia Smith claims to have uncovered this temple.
- Priest in Peril: Originally needed to enter Morytania via the Paterdomus mausoleum, but Everlight and an Agility shortcut over the River Salve have since added other ways to access Morytania.
- Waterfall Quest: Only connection is there's a scene near Baxtorian Falls.
- Troll Stronghold: Needed for ice diamond section.
Cleaning up the unnecessary requirements, they become:
Now, at first glance, that looks like we're making those quests less relevant.
But as you'll see when this project's enormous patch notes release, we've also added requirements further up the tree, where necessary to the plot of high-level quests.
For example, Temple of Ikov is an important foundational quest in the mahjarrat quest series.
Temple of Ikov sets up Lucien for his big reveal at the climax of the first grandmaster quest, While Guthix Sleeps, continuing into Ritual of the Mahjarrat. (Spoilers? It's been 16 years.)
So while we've cut Temple of Ikov from Desert Treasure and Defender of Varrock, we've added Temple of Ikov to The Curse of Arrav, the Curse of Zaros miniquest and While Guthix Sleeps.
This redrafts those requirements where they're more narratively and/or functionally relevant.
Similarly, Waterfall Quest is no longer required by Desert Treasure or Legends' Quest. But Waterfall Quest remains an important foundation to the elf and gnome storylines via Roving Elves and The Path of Glouphrie.
Some requirements are also lowered rather than removed, where appropriate. eg Legends' Quest now requires Jungle Potion rather than Shilo Village (you don't need to enter Shilo Village during Legends' Quest, but you do need Jungle Potion to make a bravery potion).
But Wait, There's More!
In addition to quest requirement changes to 40ish of our quests, I also fixed a number of adjacent things while those quests were under the tree surgery knife.
I'd like to conclude with a preview of those upcoming changes. They'll release alongside cleaning up quest requirements:
- In Memory of the Myreque no longer has a 10 day timegate to build all of the Myreque statue plinths
- Quest NPCs who are also Archaeology collectors (Wise Old Man, Reldo, the Goblin Village generals, Chief Tess) now have a dialogue option for collections, rather than asking if you'd like to talk about Archaeology collections every time you talk to them
- Reldo now also asks you to bring a restored Dominarian device at 84 Archaeology (when you have the level to restore it) rather than mentioning it every time you talk to Reldo with 42 Archaeology (Everlight unlocked)
- Kharshai near the arctic banite mining site now requires you to accept the Children of Mah quest before recapping most of the Sixth Age plot
Changes to Skill requirement
- Azzanadra's Quest no longer requires 58 Prayer
- Between a Rock no longer requires 30 Defence (Defence, Mining and Smithing XP converted to lamps)
- The Curse of Zaros miniquest no longer requires 31 Prayer (moved possible spawn of Dhalak the magician from Edgeville monastery altar to the Wizards' Tower)
- Desert Slayer Dungeon miniquest no longer requires 70 Slayer but it's mentioned in the quest overview's combat description, so you can train on the lower-level bosses to meet the fourth boss' 70 Slayer requirement
- Dream Mentor no longer requires 85 combat level
- Enter the Abyss now requires 5 Runecrafting rather than Rune Mysteries (to demonstrate a basic knowledge of Runecrafting, since Rune Mysteries was reworked to not lock access to the rune essence mine)
- Fairy Tale III no longer requires 37 Summoning and 59 Magic, so fairy rings can be fully unlocked by Magic and Summoning pures; Gnarly no longer bites you if your Summoning is lower than 37; 59 Magic is no longer required to heal patches and allies in the fairy godfather battle
- Family Crest now displays 59 Magic as a suggestion
- Fremennik Sagas: Their unabridged skill requirements are now displayed as suggestions
- King's Ransom no longer requires 65 Defence and 45 Magic (Defence and Magic XP converted to lamps)
Changes to Quest Point requirements:
- Swan Song no longer requires 101 Quest Points
- Wanted! no longer requires 33 Quest Points (requiring Recruitment Drive and Enter the Abyss already makes you fairly noteworthy)
- Another Slice of H.A.M.:
- Added VFX to the artefacts you dig up in the Dorgeshuun train tunnel to make them easier to see
- Made some dialogue referring to your earth sciences test conditional to no longer require The Dig Site quest
- Updated the coordinate where you're thrown out of the Lumbridge swamp cave by H.A.M. guards to match the latest position of the Lumbridge swamp caves
- The Curse of Arrav:
- The Pharoah Queen now provides you with a canopic jar of sacred oil so you don't have to complete Shades of Mort'ton
- Ali the Wise now only talks about your earlier tobogganing antics if you've completed the relevant quests
- Your current % progress rebuilding the mummy is now appended to the quest's "Fully restore Senliten" requirement to make that easier to track
- Removed pickaxe and sacred oil from Required Items
- Dealing with Scabaras:
- Ugthanki dung can now be acquired without The Feud
- Assistant archaeologist Kerner now has a dialogue option assisting you in sourcing ugthanki dung
- Camel troughs in Pollnivneach now have an option to fill them if carrying red hot sauce
- Clarified text to locate the ladder east of the High Priest
- Dream Mentor:
- The Oneiromancer now gives you a dream vial (herb) instead of an empty dream vial, so you don't have to acquire extra goutweed
- Eadgar's Ruse:
- Tweaked a Sanfew dialogue option that referred to the plot of the pre-rework version of Druidic Ritual
- Fairy Tale I:
- Replaced volencia moss with dragon bones as a potential item to enchant secateurs, thereby removing Jungle Potion requirement
- The Lost Tribe:
- When reading the book of tribal symbols in Varrock palace library, Reldo now provides a clearer objective to talk to the generals in Goblin Village
- Rewrote the goblin generals' dialogue tree so they can discuss the Lost Tribe independently of Goblin Diplomacy
- Removed pickaxe from Required Items, since you have one on your toolbelt
- Love Story:
- Zenivivia's dialogue that refers to Swan Song's removed requirements (One Small Favour and Garden of Tranquillity) is now conditional
- My Arm's Big Adventure:
- Murcaily no longer requires and deducts 60% Tai Bwo Wannai Cleanup favour when My Arm gathers gout tubers
- One Small Favour:
- Cromperty dialogue mentioning Sedridor now only occurs if you've completed Rune Mysteries
- Changed the text "Tassie shows you how to make pot lids" to "Tassie shows you how to seal the pot perfectly", since One Small Favour hasn't been required to make pot lids for a long time
- Recipe for Disaster:
- In the Lumbridge sage's egg puzzle, updated King Lathas, Pirate Pete and Hetty to their overworld appearance, changed the Islwyn quiz to Sir Amik and other White Knights (as Islwyn is hard to tell apart from other elves), and changed the Velorina quiz to Thessalia and similar names
- Swan Song:
- Master Crafter's dialogue about Tassie Slipcast teaching you to make pot lids now only occurs if you've completed One Small Favour
- Throne of Miscellania:
- Throne room guard now acknowledges if you've completed Heroes' Quest instead of requiring you to complete Heroes' Quest
- Tortle Combat:
- Increased difficulty from novice to intermediate to reflect its 40 Construction req
- As it no longer requires The Lost Tribe (to decouple the Temple Knight and cave goblin quest series), replaced bone spear clue leading to Dorgeshuun mines with rune platebody leading to Oziach's Armour in Edgeville, since Dragon Slayer is not required to equip a rune platebody, as of the Mining & Smithing rework (have you heard about it? I'm contractually required to enquire if you've heard about it)
- While Guthix Sleeps:
- You can now enrich a snapdragon seed and get rose-tinted lens from Betty in Port Sarim without requiring Hand in the Sand