With the updates Jagex has forcefully shoved down our throats (such as limited trading, the assist system, the Grand Exchange, Bounty Hunter, revenants, the wilderness ditch, the stake cap, Quick Chat), how to effectively train some skills has been greatly influenced, others may not have been changed at all. In the following sections of this article, I will cover each skill alphabetically, and list older training methods compared with efficient methods that exist today, if any.
Agility is one of the “do it yourself” skills that can’t really be bought, so it hasn’t been effected by the socialist updates that Jagex has strewn about its game. However, semi-recent updates have influenced how one would go about getting the most effective agility experience, though none of these updates are the ones listed in the introduction paragraph.
Back in the day:
Back in the day (RuneScpape Classic), the wilderness course was probably the most effective method. But there was still player killing back then, so there was always that risk. But after the release of RS2, on 27 July 2004, the Agility Arena was released. This was extremely popular, pretty quick, and safe!
While the wilderness course and Agility Arena still prove to be popular methods of training (mainly for those too hardcore to adjust..Creepy), the majority of people might agree that the Ape Atoll course is a better method of training from about level 70. After 75, you do not fail at this course, and it is safe.
God help us. This skill is nothing but a money sink, so there is no profit involved in it at all. Since its release, training this skill fast has been simple to understand—gather mass amounts of planks, money, and hire a butler. Trade updates have had little if no effect on it, either.
How do you train it, you ask?:
Recently, I have had limestone mentioned to me multiple times as a “good way” to train Construction. While I prefer powering Oak Doors in the labyrinths of my dungeon (doors are available at level 74, before them you would do larders), limestone is the cheapest way to train this skill. If you really have money pouring out of your ear holes, you could buy logs (or planks) of a higher wood (teak, mahogany, etc). I think oak is good for price. Not too much, but it’s still a bit pricey, as that was this skill’s main job. The quickest way to deplete your plank stockpiles would be to hire a regular butler, and get him to do 10 at a time (whether you bought logs or planks will change how many trips he makes. If you brought logs, you have to send him to un-note them first, then to the sawmill). I haven’t looked in to limestone, but I would assume you get a butler (demon butler or regular) to un-note the bricks. Oh, and be sure not to stay in your house getting too many levels—you may have trouble getting back out of that portal with a giant builder’s bum.
I do not intend to offend anyone who may be proud of their cooking cape, but honestly this skill was ruined and mangled by the simplest of updates. The Grand Exchange has perhaps made this skill a little less enjoyable to train because of the money loss from buying raw and selling cooked, but that does not deter many people from taking a few days out of their life to get this 99.
Prior to the staged assassination:
Long ago, in a RuneScape many remember and many do not, one was required to select each item and use it with a range or fire in order to cook it. This was time consuming, annoying, and downright boring. Cooking was not this skill that was laughed at by the general public. Skill capes also did not exist, so one was not keen to get a 99 just for a cape. 80 cooking was considered a milestone for cooking sharks you would catch yourself. Cooked sharks were 1k each. Player killers loved to buy them. The average Joe loved to sell them for some quick money. Cooking was a fine skill to prefer. However…
With the release of the “Cook-X” update on 12 September 2005, cooking was a skill that people thought, “Hey, this could be a really easy 99 now!” Even though that was true, skill capes still did not exist, so cooking was still a little respectable. Cooking now became a skill that used to require attention for hours on end to a skill that could be done while watching a film, browsing forums, reading a book, or any other task that requires no effort. It is the godchild of fishing, which only requires attention when the spots move, your inventory gets full, or when you get a random event. Upon the release of skill capes and skill emotes, cooking was one of the skills that any kid would try and get to 99 “just to have a 99.” At this time was when cooking became a skill that I lost any interest in obtaining, however multitudes of people refuse to see this and love to sport that deep purple cape around, with no red trim.
Because this is one of my 99 skills, the trade updates really hit close to home in this area. The method I used to train this became obsolete, impossible, screwed over, a distant memory. The Grand Exchange’s controlled prices let the players briefly control the prices of items, but they had to be set initially. This ruined good crafting. And only to add to the horror brought upon this wonderful skill, limited trading prevented one from buying hides at their own preferred price. They either comply with the GE, or don’t buy them.
Looking back, I realize I barely cut the deadline. The GE and trade updates were released in December of 2007 and January of 2008, and I got this skill to 99 around November of 2007. I would sit in World 2, repeatedly typing what dragonhide I was buying and for my set price (1800 for blue, 1500 for green). I didn’t set this price because I am a scrooge; I set it because it was the maximum that I could pay per hide in order to barely cut even in the end. As I write this article, the average price for blues is 2,011 each and the average for greens is 1,672 each. My method would result in drastic losses if one were to implement it in today’s RuneScape.
I’m really not sure if there is a way out there anymore to train crafting without losing a lot of money. Perhaps jewelry of some kind, but the experience given is a LOT less than dragonhide bodies; it would take so much longer I honestly don’t think it would be worth it. An older method that comes to mind is battlestaffs, but I can guarantee the trade updates and GE have made that method crap too. If you really don’t mind wasting a lot of time, kill dragons, sell the bones and keep the hides. Since you’re selling the bones and they are about the same price as blue dragonhide and a bit more than green, it’s like you’re getting 2 dragonhides per kill. Plus you will definitely have a lot of money if you alch the bodies after you’re finished.
Our own Shane12088 is the master farmer around these parts. His experiences with 99 farming are similar to my own in 99 crafting. The GE and trade updates made seed prices go up a lot, as he told me magic seeds were recently over 200k each. While he was farming, they were 185k on a really bad day. The farming industry of RuneScape is only just now recovering from the blow the GE and co. had on it, and it’s been 7 months.
As I have only recently seen the light into the ways of the master farmer, Shane has ever so kindly provided me with a list of prices he had established for his quest for the Farming cape. According to Shane, magic seeds averaged 170-180k each, 185k on a bad day. Today’s GE graphs illustrate a decline in price for most seeds, magics averaging 183k. Calquats are significantly lower in today’s market than they were back then, being from 18 to 20k each. In Shane’s explanation he said they were 35-40k each. Palm trees are in decline along with most everything else. Shane’s price was about 80k. Having a look at the GE’s graph for palm tree seeds, only a week ago they were averaging 95k each, whereas today they are 79k.
99 farming is quite appealing. It’s not very involved, but it is quite costly. It does have benefits that can provide profit though, unlike construction. At the end of May I purchased a lot of maple seeds for around 33k each. Here I am two weeks later looking at the average price of 28k. I bought calquats for around 25k each, also they are cheaper now. Pineapple seeds, what I am using for my fruit tree patches, are going up. They had been in decline from the 18k each that I bought them for, bottomed out at about 13k each, and are now rising steadily again. I do plan to switch to Shane’s setup, but not just yet. I think Farming is still a good skill and has finally recovered back to what it used to be.
This is also one of my 99 skills. I purchased maple logs from Shane for about 80-90 each around February of 2007, I believe. Firemaking has become somewhat similar to cooking, as being viewed as “an easy 99,” but in my opinion at least we still have to click each log. There isn’t much to write about this skill, except that maples have nearly halved in price since I bought mine from Shane, and they are one of the most traded items on the GE. The bright orange cape is nice, plus it’s a good skill to get total levels in.
Fishing has been almost the same throughout all my time playing RuneScape. During the bad outbreak of bots, gold farmers and macroers, fishing felt the biggest punch in the face when the price of sharks dropped from ~900gp each to 400gp each. The GE and trade limits greatly benefited this skill, as the price of sharks has gone back up since the bots decided to jump off a cliff (or rather, were pushed off by Andrew Gower).
Lobsters, sharks…these were the mainstream food types used my player killers and the average Joe looking to fight the KBD or do that hard quest. How do they get them? Someone fishes them and cooks them, of course. Whether or not people only did these to get 99 is something I never did find out before the update that perhaps changed fishing greatly. One method of fishing I hear about occasionally is fly fishing at Shilo Village, but this proves to not be as profitable as other more mainstream ways.
Once completed the Swan Song quest, one may have access to the Piscatoris Fishing Colony, where the infamous monkfish resides. These are fast catching, decent healing food that sells well. Much faster than sharks are, obviously, but less used by mainstream food users. The colony is isolated, usually not very crowded, and attracts the peace loving bunch who get to know each other in the weeks they spend dipping that net in and out of the water. Overall, fishing hasn’t changed much in recent years. It’s a good skill to be a pro at.
Oh, dear…you have reached level 99 fletching. With the release of skill capes, this skill became a very popular “easy 99” similar to that of cooking. It was a relaxed, easy skill for a really long time in RS2. I admit I enjoyed doing it myself because I made some profit from it in my early days of playing. I haven’t done it much since I discovered other more efficient ways, but it was a nice booster skill.
Fletching. All you had to do was withdraw the logs, click the knife to the log, and let it automatically cut them for you. This was the fast part. After you cut the logs, you could have to withdraw 14 unstrung bows and 14 bowstrings (bowstrings also had a rough time with autoers, because of flax pickers etc). My method was to move a bow string and bow to the bottom right corner and repeatedly click back and forth as fast as I could to get it done fast. Surprisingly, this was actually faster than the way we are forced to do it today. There was not really much more to training fletching than that.
String-X was recently released. It is slower than the old way I used to do it, but requires less effort, prevents carpal tunnel, and is just about one of the laziest updates that could happen to an already lazy skill. Trade updates and the GE may have affected log price, flax/bowstring price, and nature rune price, but just like cooking that does not deter someone from thinking the untrimmed fletching cape is cool to wear around and easy to get. A combination of fletching and cooking is often seen to attempt to “fool” onlookers that the player wearing the trimmed fletching/cooking cape has a 99 that is uncommon.
Herblore is one of the skills greatly impacted by trade. Trading for the herbs, seconds, vials, and finished potions make this a very people dependent skill. Prior to the GE, Super Sets (a super attack, super defense and super strength potion) were the best way to train herblore. They sold for 10k each, as one unit most of the time, with each potion in the set being a 3 dose. Now there is no point in making super sets for training herblore. Super attack potions sell for 300-350gp each, but the herb to make it—an irit leaf—costs about 1200gp each. Now if you want a “super set,” you have to buy each potion individually instead of the batch deal that used to be common. Player killers were quick sales for super sets, usually around Edgeville. It was a good business.
Since the GE ruined prices, Jagex took away player killing and staking, demand for super sets isn’t quite what it used to be. These days, the accepted way to train herblore is buying the herbs and ingredients for antifire potions, and reselling either at 3 or 4 dose (I found 4 dose sell easier, but it’s the same price per dose actually. People are just lazy). Most likely you will lose money and profit was never a thought. Herblore is nice to have a high level in, but is very expensive and time consuming. The old method for adding herbs to vials of water and adding ingredients to unfinished potions is the same as the old method for stringing bows. However, Jagex recently added the Make-X option to this skill too, so it’s become somewhat easier and less aggravating. I wouldn’t call that a fair trade for the ruining of super sets, but Jagex usually has the final say since it is their game.
This is another one of the “do it yourself” skills like Agility. The levels can’t be bought. Training methods for hunter have been the same since its release, being that from about 70 all the way to 99 one would catch red chinchompas. With the release of the GE, chinchompas have fluctuated in price from 750-900 each, where before the GE the accepted price was 700 and had gotten much lower than that, nearing 600. With the release of Impetuous Impulses, there was a storm of rushing to get 83 hunter just so people could catch a dragon impling. This was ultimately that worst thing that happened to the skill. It used to be a simple, secluded community down in the hills of the Feldip area. Hunter spots then became crowded, and that’s why the chinchompas were declining. Since then, however, it has been corrected—and dragon implings sell 500k each on the Grand Exchange. 🙂
If you have gotten this far and actually read what I had to say, I thank you and hope you enjoyed yourself. This is only the first half of the topic comparing old and new methods for skill training, since 21 skills is obviously too much to write and read at once (10 was almost too much itself 😳 ).
Thanks for reading, see you next time.
6th July 2008, at 4:04pm
That was a very interesting article. I was saddened to see that you cut it at 10. I hope you write for the other 11. 🙂
I didn’t really agree with Fletching. It may be simple clicks for cutting it into a bow (u), but stringing took me a long time after taking a few minute wrist beaks.
30th August 2008, at 12:11am
Very true. Im glad im not the only one that thinks Jagex’s updates for the Grand Exchange and the rest really fuck’d the game up.