Warning, contains plot spoilers for Deadliest Catch.
Earlier this week saw the release of a long-awaited type of update - a quest. Deadliest Catch, a fishing-hunting based quest, sees the player team up with Jones the Fisherman to catch a leviathan named 'Thalassus'. Sporting some high requirements, those being 67 Hunter, 70 Thieving and 70 Fishing, the quest looked promising. Oh, and it was rated 'Master', so it was apparently as hard as Regicide, Mourning's End Part 2, Legend's Quest... you know the ones. The one's we cringed at when we couldn't get past that damned ledge, or fully power up the oven to make that bomb.
So let's go over the quest, quickly. It starts in the humble Fisher's Guild, with Jones telling the player about the giant sea monster. Intrigued, you have to go and get some materials for him - a giant harpoon, a sea chart and a crew member. Sounds interesting. To get the sea chart we have to... pickpocket the Master Fisher... hmm, well maybe getting that harpoon will be challeng-- oh wait, all I have to do is speak to someone. Well, maybe that crew member is a tough one to convinc-- oh wait no, all I have to do is make a potion. And we're off to sea... Well, let's hope that this will be interesting.
So... the grand puzzle in this master quest is... find the correct order to find where the wreckage leads too. Which is the same for everyone. Okay, I'm starting to notice a trend here. Well, at least battling the Leviathan will be fun!-- no wait, Jones just gets eaten and you have to convince some Mermaid to free him. By feeding him some Karambwan. That the NPCs provide. (so none of those long treks, or even item requirements, like the quests used to have) And then the quest is... finished?
Yes, indeed, after about 10 to 15 minutes of dialogue and a puzzle you can read off a guide in about 20 seconds, that Master quest is brought to a close. And you're rewarded rather handsomely - 70,000 Fishing EXP, 26,000 Hunter EXP (plus more from hunting Thalassus again) and 8,000 Thieving EXP (plus some additional rewards like wieldable nets and Deposit Boxes around Gielinor). This, finally, brings me to my point. In light of recent quests, Jagex seems to have lost their 'touch', as it were, with making the content of the quests fit the official difficulty, but have much rather stuck some high-level requirements on a beginner's difficulty quest and named it as a 'Master' quest. There is no way this quest can stand up against real Master quests, such as the aforementioned ones (Regicide, MEP2, Legend's Quest, and so on).
But why? Why does this short little quest not stand up to its official difficulty rating? For a number of reasons, really:
- • No item requirements - everything is spoon-fed to the player.
- • No difficult puzzles that actually require some thought and finesse to complete.
- • No interesting story or dialogue.
- • No captivating cutscenes or memorable boss fights.
- • The quest is shorter than Ernest the Chicken.
And it's not just this quest, no. It's a number of recent quests that Jagex have released, such as A Clockwork Syringe, King of the Dwarves, even Nomad's Requiem (despite the boss fight, there really is nothing grandmaster about it, in comparison to The Void Stares Back or While Guthix Sleeps), that have just simply been given mid-to-high requirements and a high official difficulty rating with no thought of how the content actually plays out.
In conclusion, it is actually quite disappointing to feel that Jagex is no longer putting effort into how the quest actually plays out. Don't get me wrong, however, I'm not saying the content within the quest has no effort put into it (Linza's model looks amazing!), but rather the content that the player actually does things with is not per standard. All of these high level requirements and silly short quests are really just driving people requiremental.