For the last several months, Jagex’s Old School division, the employees who create and manage content for Old School Runescape, have been designing, testing, and polling the content for the massive Raids update, released today.  Something of a “super-dungeon,” this raid, known as The Chambers of Xeric, consists of a series of seven bosses and a handful of non-combat encounters designed to encourage a well-rounded party, which has a maximum of 100 players.  Together, players will attempt to overcome the bosses within and obtain valuable items, including the ever-in-demand Dragon Claws.

Dragon Claws Old School Runescape

Source: Jagex Ltd

The inclusion of the Dragon Claws, in particular, is controversial, as the Old School team resisted introducing these iconic, but poorly balanced weapons into the game for fear of undermining the balance of Old School Runescape’s Player Versus Player (PVP) environment.  Community demand, however, drove the team to find a solution to the one-sided nature of PVP which the Dragon Claws created.  In the raid rewards from The Chambers of Xeric, the Old School team believes they have found a solution to the dilemma of melee combat outclassing its magic and ranged counterparts, in the form of potent new weapons for those two styles of combat as well.

Together, the Dragon Claws, Kodai Wand, and Twisted Bow make up the highest-profile rewards from this new content, having engendered debate and discussion almost as fervent as that around the Dragon Claws.  The tamest of the three in the eyes of the community, the Kodai Wand, allows the wielder to circumvent the normal requirement to manually click on some of the game’s most powerful spells each time they wish to cast them.

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The Dragon Claws remain unchanged, primarily useful as a way to burst down enemies by way of a special attack which hits four times in rapid succession and can be used twice in a row.  The first strike deals damage like a normal attack, but the second automatically deals one-half of that damage, and the third and fourth each deal half of the damage of the second strike.  Because players in Old School Runescape only have a maximum of 100 hit points, and the Dragon Claws can deal 40 damage in a single strike, a lucky player can instantly kill injured enemies, and cripple even those at full health.  A second use of the special attack, which similar high-hitting weapons do not allow for, increases the lethal potential.

Raids Dragon Claws Twisted Bow

Source: Jagex Ltd

The Twisted Bow, which gains increased damage and accuracy when used against magically-oriented opponents, sparked controversy when, in a demonstration of it by a Jagex employee, it dealt 85 damage against an opponent normally considered to be non-magical.  The maximum hit of the weapon is unknown, but Jagex has released a chart detailing the rate at which the weapon scales.

Due to Jagex’s policy of polling most changes to Old School Runescape and requiring more than a simple majority consensus, it is unclear whether or not any of these weapons will have their capabilities reduced once they start to appear in-game, and it may be some time until this happens, as they are only obtainable as a rare reward from The Chambers of Xeric, but if they aren’t, each of these weapons stands to radically change the face of PVP combat in Old School Runescape.

Source: Jagex Ltd