Developer Jagex has released Runescape’s massive new free update, “Land Out of Time,” today. It features the new prehistoric island, Anachronia. Since its humble beginnings way back in 1999, Runescape has come a long way. Many of us remember it fondly as the go-to game on our high schools’ library computers. One of the first major browser-based online games, Runescape pioneered a lot of role-playing game concepts we still see today. From its expertly-designed crafting mechanics to robust economy, there was always something to do in Runescape. Since then, it’s undergone a lot of overhauls and reworkings, and this recent update is nothing if not a true testament to how far the game has come. Dinosaurs have come to Runescape, and there’s a lot more than just that.
Hunters rejoice in Runescape’s Land Out of Time!
This update offers a lot more than just gnashing teeth and disproportionate forearms, though. Anachronia is home to some deadly plants as well. With both flora and fauna presenting a threat, players must tread carefully. The island’s new hunter method, Big Game Hunter, provides action for the member-inclusive Hunter skill. Land Out of Time comes with nine new baddies that will require Hunters to be between level 75 and level 96. Would-be dinosaur hunters will have to first farm the necessary resources, trap the creature, and then put it down for good. Skinning the dinos will yield materials that can be used to craft hot new armor. These big lizards don’t just offer their skin, though. Players will also loot new items that can be combined into powerful new weapons, namely a hammer and bow.
New Slayer master, tasks, and enemies
Land Out of Time offers a wide range of Slayer-specific content, as well. Slayer is another members-only supportive skill where players gain experience killing opponents who are otherwise impervious to harm. The island of Anachronia is home to a new Slayer master named Laniakea. Mysterious and dark, this seasoned veteran is said to build up her resistances by routinely consuming poisonous concoctions. She will require a combat skill of 120, and a level 90 Slayer skill as well. Laniakea can assign players a new kind of Slayer task altogether. These tasks are called “clusters,” and instead of receiving an enemy-specific task, players can choose what enemies they wish to take down. For example, instead of a red dragon, Slayers can decide what type of dragon they feel like slaying.
Land Out of Time gives “farming” a whole new meaning
In addition to four new dinosaur Slayer creatures, Land Out of Time also offers four plant-based slayer creatures, which have some interesting mechanics to them. Ranging from Slayer levels 90 through 114, these foul shrubbery can be literally grown by players who slay them and loot their seeds. The developers state that they wanted to expand on boss mechanics in general with this update, and being able to practically farm your own Slayer mobs is but one of several ways they’ve seen their vision realized. It’s interesting to see whether or not this will gain further traction as Runescape plows ahead with no clear end in sight.
New Agility course offers a lot to Runescape members!
This new and mysterious island, while daunting, will have some shortcuts. Anachronia also has a brand new Agility course. This members-only support skill has traditionally always served to allow greater travel across the lands of Runescape. Players can also recharge their energy quicker. Land Out of Time’s course extends the entire length of the island itself, making it the most efficient method of travel in the update. With plenty of points for players to hop off the course itself and travel in both directions, this should make getting around a piece of cake. That is, for players with a high enough Agility skill.
This new course also yields loot for players, the most important of which being codex ability pages. These codices are essential for upgrading two important Runescape magic abilities, Escape and Surge. These upgrades will serve to help further bolster player mobility in this new area.
What else is new
An exciting time-critical event, Breaking the Storm, happened in the weeks leading up to this update. This event called upon players to help Mr. Mordaut, a wise and benevolent old dragon, build the boat required to make the dangerous voyage to Anachronia. The island itself is quite diverse, with three different biomes. From massive canyons to dense, thorn-infested foliage and murky swampland, the island has a lot of interesting features to its landscape. Boulders can be knocked over to squash a dinosaur in the gorge below or used as makeshift bridges across cliff edges. The heavy fern coverage in its jungles makes for an ideal place to hide from predation; conversely hollow tree trunks might house an eager predator themselves, ready to ambush unsuspecting players.
Totems, totems, totems!
There are also totems that can be built using the various fragments players can farm in Anachronia. These totems will confer benefits to player efficiency, offering useful buffs such as cooldown reduction. While there are up to eight totems, only three can be used at once, and they’ll require some upkeep to maintain. Lastly, players will have access to a base camp. Thankfully, dinosaurs seem to avoid player base camps, which function similarly to player ports. Much can be built in these base camps, and upgrading them will lead to benefits down the line for players.
Runescape is always evolving, and there’s never been a better time to dive back in than this breathtaking update. After all, a game that’s still utterly booming over 20 years later has to be doing something right. Just ask the developers of Everquest, which is still alive and kicking as well after the same amount of time.
Are you playing the new update? Thinking of coming back to Runescape? Let us know in the comments!