In RuneScape, 90% of us are playing follow the leader. We wait for guides to be posted, and then follow the strategies outlined in them. Then there are the remaining 10% of players who refuse to rely on arbitrary statistics like the one previously presented in this paragraph. Players in this minority are the ones who solve the puzzles, collect and analyze data from their trial runs, and pioneer new content. They are the trailblazers of RuneScape, and they make life easy for the rest of us.
I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I started my adventures in RuneScape. I did what I’m sure many players do, and asked the Lumbridge Guide for some advice. The courteous guide informed me that mining ores, smelting them into bars, and then pounding the bars into weapons and armor was a useful way to make money. He even was kind enough to point out the mines near Varrock and the furnace in Lumbridge. I concluded that if I wanted to train combat, it would be incredibly useful to make my own equipment. After all, it wouldn’t take long before I could smith my own rune armor.
And so there I began my naïve journey. I’d walk up to the mines near Varrock, mine a load of ores, then walk back down to Lumbridge to smelt them in the furnace. Then I’d take my new bars and walk back to Varrock to smith weapons on the local anvil. I repeated this process frequently until I found myself by chance in Al Kharid on some business. I noticed a line of players quickly moving back and forth from the furnace to the bank. It was as if somebody smacked me in the forehead and said, "Bank your ores, stupid!"
Occasionally, I would break up the monotony of mining with a quest. One day I became particularly frustrated with a certain quest. Before I knew it, I found myself standing in the center of Varrock, begging every passer-by to please show me where Romeo was. Yes, I admit it. That noob you were laughing at was I.
I kept up this method of playing, equivalent to rolling a stone up a hill over and over again, until I finally happened upon Tip.It. I couldn’t believe it, not how helpful the guides were, but how ridiculous I had been playing. Forget about the friendly Lumbridge Guide; I wish I had found Tip.It sooner.
This was my introduction into the community. Whenever I found myself stuck, I came here for advice. Whenever new content is released, I come to the forums to read the feedback first. It’s those cleverest of problem solvers that keep me informed. Instead of rolling up the bridge behind them, they are happy to map it out for the rest of us. Over the years, Tip.It has become a central hub for information and ideas, a Grand Exchange of knowledge if you will.
At times I may take for granted what Tip.It has meant to me over the years, and other times I marvel at what is discovered. Although it may seem like simple math to some, I couldn’t have possibly figured out an equation to determine my combat level. I am continuously impressed with the detail of some of the player-made guides in the Archive of Wisdom, often complete with pictures and videos to illustrate their points. And I never would have completed Mourning’s End Part II without some color coded assistance.
In a community where we are constantly at each other’s throat, the trailblazer makes it possible for us to come together. They make the greatest contribution of any player in the game. These pioneers help build and strengthen the foundation beneath us. Whether you are sharing a new strategy or finding hidden Easter eggs in the game, you are the web of support that keeps the rest of us informed, and the trailblazer will always have my upmost respect. Now if you will excuse me, I still have to find Romeo. I know he’s around here somewhere.