Eight years and some odd days ago, my father brought home a new laptop, on which I played Runescape for the first time. I soon joined a clan (known today as a “friends chat”) and the leader, whom I still remember as 82airborne00, was one of the friendliest people around. He helped me get places I needed to go, like Varrock, and personally hung out in Lumbridge to help people with everyday tasks, like where to smelt tin and copper ore into bronze bars. He would spend his own time doing so, and was great at giving advice.
Needless to say, the situation now has changed drastically. A popular phrase nowadays is “exp waste” (or “xp waste” for those who really are looking to not waste exp by typing two letters instead of three). That means people often care more about exp than about helping others, especially in person. That’s okay. I guess that is today’s environment, but this means that if someone asks for help in chat—like in a clan chat or whatever, one should answer questions to the best of his/her ability. After all, if people ask for help, they need help, and it is only fitting that they are answered.
However, recently I’ve noticed a trend—many people are not very helpful and give overly brief replies that aren’t informative at all. One of the most common questions is “What’s a good way to make money?” The answer? Frequently “QBD” or “Frosts.” It seems to be neglected that most newer players (or players that are asking that question) don’t even know what each of those is, much less the level requirements for the aforementioned money-making methods. Not to mention the too common retort when someone says that they are poor and need better money making methods: “LOL! Just go bossing! I can make 30m in one day of bossing!” Sometimes I wonder if it ever occurs to these people that most people don’t have the levels/ability to do that.
Or, if someone asks “Any tips for ______ boss,” a common response is “don’t die.” Now, I know many will think this is just a witty answer and not meant to be taken seriously, but it’s only an acceptable answer if actual advice follows it. Furthermore, if a person is asked for advice specifically because that person has the knowledge and experience of the subject matter, that person has an obligation to at least attempt to help. Seldom does actual advice get dispersed—is typing a few sentences of tips or suggestions that much of “exp waste?”
Many of you might be thinking: “Lots of those answers can be found with [insert search engine here] easily!” While that may be true, for a new player/players who aren’t used to finding the best methods for everything, the [insert guide page here] can be overwhelming. Plus, if one has the necessary information, how much of a hassle is it to type a few sentences explaining it?
The lack of geniality shown towards new and/or inexperienced players is astounding; in fact, the current attitude shown by many towards these types of players is one of contempt and disgust. One time, I read a comment on one of the Runescape forums saying something to the extent of “Low-level armors and weapons don’t need [beta] testing anyway” (that person’s identity will remain undisclosed to protect privacy). Other times, especially in an experienced players’ environment, seemingly “low-level” inquiries are either abandoned or given, again, overly short answers which neglect the reality that those answers will only help those who are already knowledgeable. This is equivalent to taking the Runescape ladder with you even after you have already reached the top.
I hear a lot of discussion regarding how Runescape is going downhill and is going to be irrelevant soon. Granted, there are other factors that contribute to this problem (such as excessive push advertisements on F2P, protean items), but the current attitude and approach towards the new players, on whom the future of Runescape depends, has to be considered one of the causes.