When the Tip.It times was created, you asked for articles with interviews of the top players. Well, my friends, your request has been answered. This week we bring you an exclusive interview with the #3 player in the game, N0valyfe; who will undoubtedly reach 2,079 skill total faster than anybody ever has (not that there are many to compare to LOL).
Sit back and enjoy the read. We have tons of questions as well as the latest bank picture! Without further ado, the interview:
Tip.It: When did you begin playing RuneScape, and how did you come across it?
N0valyfe: Most people find it surprising when I tell them, but I started playing in July of '04, and an online friend showed me this wonderful game.
Tip.It: Did you have any prior knowledge of how to play the game, perhaps your friend who introduced you to the game also taught you how to play? Or did you teach yourself to play? Was this your first account?
N0valyfe: I remember when my friend showed me around Lumbridge and the surrounding areas, fresh out of tutorial island. He was level 30 at the time, but I thought he was very knowledgeable, so I sort of went with it and absorbed it all in.
Tip.It: So other than your introduction to getting around you taught yourself? And this was your first account?
N0valyfe: This was my first account, yes. I did a lot with my friend for a while though, and we sort of figured things out together. blind leading the blind.
Tip.It: How and why did you choose your RSN? Have there been times that you wished you could change it to something else? If so, what are some names you would have wanted to change it to?
N0valyfe: I've actually been using this name quite a bit before RuneScape. It should mean "nova" or "new" and "life." I've given thought to changing my name to something more traditional, but I'm generally happy with what I have.
Tip.It: What drew you to choosing a name with this meaning? Did it have some significance in your previous use(s) of it?
N0valyfe: It was my first AOL screen name, way back in 1998. I thought it would fit the online atmosphere, especially in the 90's.
Tip.It: Do you play the way you do in order to be a top ranked player, or is it because you set a personal goal to beat the game (by getting every level to 99)?
N0valyfe: It's a bit of both. I've basically been geared on skills since day 1. It's nice to watch it all grow.
Tip.It: So it started as a personal goal. At what points have you switched between being competitive and being self-driven? At what point did you decide that you wanted level 99 in all skills?
N0valyfe: I think the key point started when I struck it rich with slayer and said to myself, "Hey, I can really make this fly." Before then, I enjoyed working with each skill, seeing where I would go with them, but only dreaming about 99's.
Tip.It: You've achieved these levels much faster than anybody else in the game. Many RSC players say RS2 is far easier. Do you receive much criticism for the speed in which you've achieved your rank? If so what do you think of this criticism?
N0valyfe: I think the criticism stems from the fact that it IS easier to level up faster, but the mistake is letting that go to their heads. Remember, this game changes constantly, and part of playing RuneScape is to keep up with this change.
Tip.It: Do people seem to think less of your achievements than they think of the other top players'?
N0valyfe: I've never given it much thought, basically [I've] minded my own business.
Tip.It: On average, how many hours per day do you play?
N0valyfe: I average around 10-12 hours a day.
Tip.It: How has playing this much had an impact on your life outside of RuneScape? Such as health, social, school or job-related issues as a result?
N0valyfe: I think, in order to play this much, you really have to put aside and sacrifice a lot of other things. It's not for everyone. I want to put my best effort into what I want to do
Tip.It: So what have you sacrificed?
N0valyfe: A steady job, for example. I was nearing the end of my college studies when I first started, and RuneScape blossomed into something that I felt I wanted to do full-time.
Tip.It: Did you finish those studies? How have you been able to financially support this much game play?
N0valyfe: Yes, I've been done with college for a little over a year now. I have a master of science in electrical engineering. I live at home with my family.
Tip.It: How do they feel about how much time you spend online? What kind of pressure do they put on you to do other things?
N0valyfe: I think it's very respectable that they've given me so much room to take care of my own business, and of course they tell me to get a job haha.
Tip.It: Anyway... back to RS. After getting a skill to 99, do you ever keep trying to raise it? If so, what skills? And what motivates you to do so?
N0valyfe: I try to move on to a new skill, usually in increasing "difficulty," easy to hard, mostly based on how long each skill takes. The extra experience after 99 is usually through services I do casually. It's tough to see it go to waste, after all.
Tip.It: As close as you are to having the maximum possible level, do you wish the cap exceeded 99? What thoughts would you have if Jagex made it higher?
N0valyfe: I've read about similar topics on the forums, but I never expressed my opinion. I think, IF they should choose to raise the cap, they should do it incrementally. For example, they could perhaps raise the maximum by 5, see where it goes, then take it from there; something like that.
Tip.It: You're very close to being level 99 in every skill. What are your RuneScape plans upon reaching this goal?
N0valyfe: Rankings have been on my mind lately. I would like to close the experience gap between me and the more experienced players.
Tip.It: Does working on level 99 in skills ever get tiresome or boring? If so, is there anything you ever do in RuneScape for fun besides leveling? (Castle Wars, fighting high level monsters, PKing, etc)
N0valyfe: not in RuneScape, though I do look out the window more than I'd like to admit. I do try to attend a few clan events each month to take some stress relief.
Tip.It: Does Jagex ever ask for your opinion in anything, or discuss upcoming changes with you? Do you feel your high rank or long-term game play gets you any special attention from Jagex (in updates, reports, etc)?
N0valyfe: since I'm not related to Jagex, no. And I don't find it very surprising either. I am after all, a RuneScaper just like the rest of us.
Tip.It: In your eyes, how has the game's community changed over the time you've played, and how does it affect the way you work on skills?
N0valyfe: I think as a community, RuneScape is TOO forum-based. We trust forums to express ideas and opinions, but sometimes I feel like we're not playing the game for what it is. Overall, the community's been good.
Tip.It: Merchanting has had a huge impact in the game's economy since slayer was introduced, especially with the rare items. In what ways has this impacted the way you play the game or pay for skills, if any?
N0valyfe: I think for the exception of rares, it's a good way for raw materials to cycle around the game. Money's always an issue, because we naturally want to save as much as possible, but it's hard to change the trends that you see in the market, so I just try to live with it.
Tip.It: Has the massive rise in rares had any impact on how you play? Perhaps using them to "invest" when you gather large sums of GP?
N0valyfe: Rares are great investments, but I don't see money as a collection of wealth. I see it as the potential to work on a skill. With that said, I'd like to own a rare, but it's not at the top of my list. I've yet to play the rare market game though. Maybe I'm missing out.
Tip.It: Looking back, are there certain skills you would recommend getting high before others; perhaps skills with benefits that would make raising the others easier or more efficient?
N0valyfe: I think certain skills do carry more weight than others. I'd recommend combat skills for those who are unsure how to proceed, since it opens up so many opportunities later.
Tip.It: Do you have a favorite skill that you like working on more than others?
N0valyfe: [I've] been a fan of fletching ever since I got members.
Tip.It: What was your first 99? And which level 99 was the most satisfying for you to achieve? What made it as satisfying as it was?
N0valyfe: HP was my first 99. The most satisfying would be Smithing. Everyone dreams of 99 Smithing… everyone.
Tip.It: When raising "expensive" skills, do you tend to use money made from other skills to pay for fast methods; gather the materials yourself; or balance profitable methods with costly methods in order to minimize expenses?
N0valyfe: I used to balance things out. I think it's important to realize that with some skills, you can't continue doing that all the way to 99. opportunity has to knock for you, and you have to answer.
Tip.It: So you use money from other means to buy the fast methods?
N0valyfe: Yeah. I had a fortune from whips, which allowed me to access faster methods.
Tip.It: Now that whips aren't worth nearly as much, when you need to make money, do you tend to use skills, merchanting, PKing, or drops from high level monsters?
N0valyfe: My wealth has been steadily declining, but aside from that, I get by with drops or selling old bank items.
Tip.It: So, unlike many of the first 85 slayers, you didn't stock up on party hats and sell them after they rose in value?
N0valyfe: That's right. Many party hats were used as payment for the earlier whips, but instead of investing, I sold them to work on skills.
Tip.It: Did you have any idea that they would go as high as they've gone now? Would you have done things differently knowing what they are worth now? Do you think your lack of RSC experience had any effect on this foresight?
N0valyfe: I'm stubborn. I never thought they would rise so quickly though, but as I mentioned earlier, I'm not too concerned with my wealth. As long as I have enough money to do what I can, then I'm happy.
Tip.It: With your place in the scores you've automatically gained fame among other players. Are there times you feel that this attention has hindered your ability to play the game as you'd like?
N0valyfe: I think I have to watch what I type more than I'd like to. I want to carry a respectable atmosphere and reputation. It's amazing how a few wrong words can destroy that.
Tip.It: Are there times when this fame has made the game easier for you?
N0valyfe: I try not to flaunt my name, but I think it makes buying items on the official forums easier.
Tip.It: Do you ever use a secondary account when you want to play without all the attention? Do you ever post on fan site forums using an alias, either to avoid attention or to keep from having what you say associated with you?
N0valyfe: I rarely sign onto secondary accounts, and I try (it's becoming increasingly harder these days because of the impersonators.) to claim the same [fan site forum] name as my account name. I do, however, mask my identity. Tip.It forums is an example.
Tip.It: What are your thoughts of the #1 XP battle between Zezima and Lilyuffie88, if any?
N0valyfe: You make it sound so epic. I think they have their way of playing the game, so not much can be said without speculation. They have killer experience, regardless of what they do.
Tip.It: Do you think you will ever race for #1 in XP? Or are there any skills you think you'd like to be #1 in?
N0valyfe: For now, I don't think that title can be claimed by "racing." Rather, it must be something you have to earn by time and every-day dedication to the game. It's hard to decide the second question haha.
Tip.It: Is there anything about the game (the game itself, not the players) that really annoys you? Is there anything in particular that you would change if you were able to change just one thing?
N0valyfe: the chat system annoys me. I don't think it's an effective system after a while. You have friends that you just met, clan friends, clan members in general, sellers, buyers, etc. It all clashes into one list. I think I would change it by implementing groups and adding status options.
Tip.It: Lastly, what tips would you give to a newcomer wishing to maximize his skill total as you have?
N0valyfe: Play the game inquisitively. try different things out. read forums. wait for opportunity. work hard. have fun.
Tip.It: awesome. Thanks for your time. :D
N0valyfe: thank you, I hope this interview was educational.
As promised we have his bank picture. I thought I would just save it for last.
|Click here to see |
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