When the skill of Dungeoneering came out, many players, myself included, were excited about what this would mean for the world of Runescape. Putting aside the fact that it was the new skill, the idea of a mini-Runescape where everything would be balanced, perfect and beautiful was something that couldn’t leave my mind. I would go into the depths of Daemonheim and be whoever I wanted to be, free from the constraints of generally approved methods of doing everything that you find in the wider Runescape world. For example, woe betide any member with 70 attack who doesn’t own an Abyssal Whip. I thought Daemonheim would be different – I was wrong.
I have always been very partial to the skill of magic, I'm not sure why, it just always seems more fun than smacking something with a sword or throwing pointy bits of metal at someone. So when I started Dungeoneering for the first time, I naively thought that I could get by with my runes and staff – and I did for a while. For the first 40 levels or so, when I was still learning the nuances of this skill, I used magic. Eventually, when the time came to buckle down for some levels, I found my magic failing me. I was unable to complete a large dungeon with friends using my starting runes alone (77 Runecrafting for Blood Runes eludes me), and if I tried to be a part of a group of players on world 117 I was unlikely to come across someone kind enough to make them for me. The release of solo medium dungeons was particularly hard on me, as it was impossible for me to finish the dungeon without running out of runes. That's how I came to the hard decision of abandoning my trusty empowered air staff and taking up a spear and platebody.
It might seem like a trivial choice, but when you’ve been enjoying the ability to actually use a different style of combat outside of PVP and the occasional slayer task, it was devastating. Gone was the dream that Jagex actually cared about us – players who wanted to deviate from the unholy pairing of Attack and Strength. Admittedly, I got used to it quickly. I learned the correct combat style types for the monsters and rejoiced in not having to make runes at the start, or worrying about when they’d run out. Large dungeons were fun once again and this stayed with me right up until a few weeks ago, with the release of Warped Floors, new rewards and a hidden gem for mages in Daemonheim.
The Celestial Surgebox, both a purchasable reward and an item available inside Daemonheim, holds the runes for air wave or air surge spells. While the actual use of this outside of Daemonheim is still debatable, inside Daemonheim it's pretty useful. It can be charged with surge spells and bound in the rune/arrow bind slot, keeping 125 charges of air surge for use right at the start of each dungeon. It sounds good, doesn’t it? The idea behind it, I believe, is that it prevents mages being slow to start a dungeon. By removing the need to craft runes at the start, they can participate in combat as quickly as their range and melee counterparts can.
I went on a crusade to find one of these, and many fallen forgotten mages later I acquired one. I was so pleased at being able to use magic regularly once again, right up until the moment that I remembered how little 125 runes was. I tried a medium dungeon and just like old times, I couldn’t complete it on magic alone. It was a bit depressing considering all the effort I’d gone through to get the box. The only thing the box had done was make me craft a few less runes at the start; it hadn’t helped to balance the triangle at all.
So what WILL help to correct this fatal flaw in Dungeoneering? Being able to store more than 125 ammo would be a good start, meaning that mages and rangers won’t have to stop half way through a dungeon to stock up again. Of course, it’s important to make sure that Runecrafting in Daemonheim doesn’t become redundant. Perhaps creating a system where you can store as many runes as you want in the ammo slot (or celestial surgebox), which will carry over to the next dungeon but wont replenish back to the max amount when you restart a dungeon. For example, if you have 500 blood runes and use 100 in one dungeon, you’ll only have 400 in the next. This means that you can effectively mage for long periods of time by either taking the time out to craft loads beforehand or by getting a friend with the right level to craft them for you. The same could apply to Range ammo with Fletching.
This is just one suggestion on how to fix what I perceive to be a gaping problem in what could possibly have been one of the most balanced pieces of content Runescape has ever seen. I’m sure you can imagine the chances of Jagex actually implanting a solution to this any time soon, but people are allowed to dream – right?