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The DarkScape world is split into three regions

DarkScape, which will run in parallel to the original game, will take place in the same world as RuneScape, using all the same art assets and gameplay, but with two main differences that set the games apart. First, DarkScape is an open player-versus-player (PvP) world, where almost any player can attack and kill any other player. Cities will have powerful, non-player controlled characters (NPCs) that will jump in and attack anyone who starts a fight, but with enough high-level players, they can be overpowered. It’s almost as if Runescape 3 is trying to strong-arm me into subscribing by dangling prizes in front of my nose - that’s fine, plenty of games do that. But Runescape goes the extra mile by taking some of those prizes and slapping me across the face with them.

It’s a little irritating. There’s also the fact that you can only play for seven days without verifying your email. I think that’s a little weird, but it shouldn’t prove to be an obstacle to most players. I suppose it’s just one more barrier between spammers/farmers and the game. The DarkScape world is split into three regions. Each region has its own economy and grand exchange. In DarkScape, the only way to transport goods form one region to another is to journey on food. This creates a huge risk, but with that comes greater rewards for transporting precious resources. DarkScape contains most of RuneScape’s content. Players will start at level 1, and RuneScape members receive additional benefits for faster progression.

These include receiving 1.5 times XP, extra bank spaces, and more items kept on death. The Wilderness is unique in DarkScape, in that it has its minimap disabled and visibility reduced. However blocking of teleportation in high level Wilderness in original Runescape is disabled here. Each area also has its own Grand Exchange. Each area's Grand Exchange is unconnected, meaning items sold in a Grand Exchange in low-threat area can only be bought by other players in low-threat areas. Because of this, prices of various items also vary from one region to another. After the cancellation of Stellar Dawn, the failure of Transformers Universe, and the launch of RuneScape 3.0, it would be fair to wonder where exactly Jagex were headed from here.

It seems they are off into experimental territory, as they announced today that they have released "DarkScape," a hardcore, PvP-focused RuneScape world. As they put it on the new server's official page, "DarkScape is an experimental sandbox MMO, where open-world PvP and ruthless trade wars are the name of the day. Conquer a massive world with danger around every corner, dominate deadly high-risk regions and make your fortune running lucrative trade routes." They are trying to pass it off as a completely new MMO-and someday it might be, as they claim that players can help decide where it goes from here-but, at this exact moment, it sounds a bit like they took the current edition of RuneScape and dropped an EvE-like ruleset onto it.

I discard the coal that I mine. If I could burn it, perhaps I would. Using a fancy addition to the skills menu, I track my progress towards level 60: now at 11%. This is not a goal I expect to achieve. I find a sapphire in one rock. There used to be crowds of people at these mines, before the respawn times were this fast, offering to cut gemstones for free, offering to buy and sell wares. I miss them. I miss the hustle and bustle. I miss the legions of people who would stand in and around banks, offering to buy this for x and sell that for y, dancing and scrolling rainbow text standing out from the standard yellow. I miss the sense of life so much, even in the darkest of places. I miss the pizza parties in the Wildy, groups of strangers trusting each other enough to stand deep within the dangerous wilds, defending each other from bandits, while we took turns cooking pizzas.

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