When April’s Behind the Scenes was released, (and I mean the real one, not the April Fool's one) I found myself quite excited by an upcoming update, something that I haven’t really felt for the last few months. The Livid Farm sounded great on paper: new spells, new ways to farm… but it was mainly the new spells that got me. As a mage at heart I love seeing new spells being added to the game so I was eagerly awaiting this update.
I wasn’t disappointed.
I went to the farm with whatever runes I had in my bank at the time and gave it a shot. It took me a few minutes to realise what I was supposed to be doing, since it was the day of release and therefore crowded. Once I got the hang of it, picked up the patterns and started to understand which strain of Livid was which… I ran out of runes!
I said that I wasn’t disappointed by this update like many people have been, and that’s true. All the spells that they mentioned were there; it’s given Lunar Magic a refreshing new set of content which is useful for skillers and killers. The Farm isn’t that bad either. While the content can end up in a predictable cycle so you know when to energise, when to string up the produce et cetera, it’s not completely boring. The biggest qualm I have is how many runes I’m using up while playing it. I’ve seen estimates at around 1100 Astral runes per hour. That’s quite a lot, especially since Astral runes have spiked since the update; I’ve had to resort to crafting my own.
The Livid Farm works out to be quite expensive for Farming XP, when compared to the more profitable method of farming herbs, but since it’s incorporating Magic, Crafting, and Construction XP too, it’s not a bad deal. It’s faster than farming herbs as well, which for a player like me (with a mid-level of 60 in the skill), is good.
Then come the rewards, the main reason why you would want to do this distraction in the first place, or is it a mini-game? It’s hard to place into a category like that. By completing tasks around Livid Farm, you gather produce points which can be used to obtain rewards from the owner of the Farm, Pauline.
The maximum Produce Points you earn per round (each round lasts 60 seconds before the farm moves to the next stage) is 1,580, providing you can do everything in the farm. Therefore the maximum amount of Points you can earn per hour is 18,960. This is important to consider when we look at the rewards.
The first reward you can earn is Teleport to South Falador with 87,300 points. The final reward is Vengeance Group with 829,000 points. Claiming a reward doesn’t reduce your point total until you reach Vengeance Group. So to get all the rewards and start obtaining the 'wishes,' rewards which last a short time but have useful effects, you have to play the Livid Farm for approximately 43 hours. That is quite a long time.
This is what most people are angry about. The length that this content will take to complete, to get the ‘best spell,’ is quite immense. People, understandably, don’t want to spend 43 hours to get Vengeance Group. Nor do I, frankly, but I feel that the amount of points is needed make the content balanced. If it took less points then more people would have access to spells like Disruption Shield and Vengeance Group, unbalancing combat (admittedly, combat isn’t all that balanced anyway). Also, it keeps people coming back to the content rather than letting it develop into an abandoned wasteland like many things have become in the game.
Arguably, it’s a cheap way of keeping players on the content. Then again, Jagex have added content before which is inventive and non-repetitive, but gets abandoned because it isn’t the fastest XP in the game. The Artisan’s Workshop, for example, was creative game play but hasn’t become a standard way of training Smithing because it isn’t the best XP per hour. Therefore I can’t blame them for making these spells a challenge. I’m glad that for once we aren’t being spoon-fed the rewards after such a little time. People should work hard to get them. Yes, it isn’t challenging, but to go for 43 hours to get the rewards shows dedication.
So in conclusion, I agree that the Livid Farm is quite long to complete but if you farm often, PK, or Runecraft, then the rewards, I believe, are well worth it.