Hey there, ‘Scapers!
Welcome to Part 2 of our Tutorial Island-style tour of the RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg. If you missed Part 1, check it out here.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be taking you through how to play the game and sharing sneak peeks at cards and minis along the way!
Today, we’re heading straight into gameplay. Before we dive in, if you haven’t already, go follow the Kickstarter now so you don’t miss the launch!
Already followed? Excellent. Then let’s go!
Today’s Mini: Archer!
Where there’s danger, the archer ensures no foe gets close enough to be a threat! Completing the melee, magic, and ranged combat triangle, the archer gives you a full selection of combat-focused minis to choose from.
Inspired by early-game archer gear from the video games, the archer is equipped with a shortbow and bronze arrows. Like their weapons, their leather body, chaps, and boots are cheap and easy to come by — ideal for someone just starting their RuneScape Kingdoms journey.
Skills and Skilling in RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg
by Jamie Perkins (Product Owner)
Now we’ve seen the first few player avatar minis, let’s imagine you’ve created your RuneScape Kingdoms adventurer.
It’s time to learn about your adventurer’s skills, and how they level up.
First things first: how do we track your skilling (i.e. the skills you’ve levelled)?
Character sheets are used in tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs) and narrative board games to track the progress of each player’s character. Some of you might’ve used them already.
It made sense to use character sheets in RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg to track the narrative and progression of individual skills, so that’s what we’ve done.
Let’s take a peek at the character sheets now!
Like in a TTRPG, you’ll fill in your character sheet to track your character’s progression. But you’ll also use it to store the tokens you’ve collected during the game. This nifty sheet is both informational AND organisational. Wow!
As you can see from the picture, we’ve added spaces to track a few different things. That way, you can see at a glance exactly where your adventurer is up to. We’ve filled in some elements of this character sheet to give you an example of what it might look like during play.
Okay, that’s character sheets covered. But what about the rest of your skills?
There are 23 different skills in Old School RuneScape, and even more in RuneScape. Even using character sheets, 23 would be too many to manually track.
So, we’ve had to make some tough decisions on which video game skills to include, and which skills to group together.
You might recognise these ones right away, because they’ve been taken directly from the video games:
These include ranged, magic, defence, thieving, crafting, and cooking.
Instead of having ‘attack’ and ‘strength’, we’ve combined these into the ‘melee’ skill:
We’ve also combined mining, fishing, woodcutting, hunter, and farming into one skill: ‘gathering’. This represents your adventurer’s ability to scavenge and locate things — as well as collecting what they’ve found by mining, fishing, and so on.
Of course, we couldn’t fit all the video game skills in the base game, so there’s a few that aren’t included… yet. (Did someone say expansion? No? Must’ve been the wind.)
Anyway, now we know which skills have been included. But how do we use them?
The main way to use your skills in RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg is through skill tests. To take a skill test, you roll a given number of ten-sided dice (or D10’s) to try and beat a target number. The higher you roll, the more likely you are to succeed and pass the test.
Also, the higher your skill level, the more dice you’ll get to roll, giving you a much better chance of success!
Let’s look at an example of how that works in practice:
During your game, you decide to help the Burthorpe Guard search for valuables stashed by a thief. This requires you to take a gathering skill test, circled below:
The icon in the middle of the two numbers identifies this test as a gathering skill test. The first number shows how difficult the test is (the complexity level). To have the best chance of succeeding, you’ll need a skill level that equals or exceeds the complexity level. In this case, 9.
Using the character sheet from earlier as our example…
…we can see our adventurer only has a skill of 2, which is below the complexity level of the test. They can still take the test, but it’ll be at a disadvantage, meaning they can only roll one die. If they had level 9 in gathering, for example, they’d roll two dice instead. If they had more than level 9, they’d roll three dice.
The second number is the target. As you can see, the target in this instance is 6. When you roll, you need at least one die to equal or exceed this number to pass the test. So, the more dice you roll, the more likely you are to pass.
Our example adventurer only rolls one die, but they can still pass the skill test by rolling a 6 or higher.
Okay, now we know what skills are in the game and how skill tests work. You’re probably wondering how to level up your skills so you can roll more dice and pass more skill tests. Well, ‘Scapers, read on to find out!
Levelling Up Your Skills
You level up your skills by gaining experience, in the form of XP tokens, for each skill. When you gain XP, you place a token on the relevant skill in your character sheet. When you amass three tokens, you remove them and gain a skill level. Simple! And yes, you can hit level 99 in all skills!
Just like the video games, you can gain XP by doing a variety of activities. The simplest way is taking a skill test. That’s right! Whether you succeed or fail, you’ll still gain an XP token just for taking the test. After all, failing is still experience, right?
As you’d expect, you’ll gain the XP in the skill you took the test for. For example, failing a gathering skill test grants you 1 XP in the gathering skill, regardless of the result.
But skill tests aren’t the only way to level up. You’ll also gain XP by completing quests, advancing the main story arc, and, for the grinders amongst you, undertaking a good ol’ skilling session.
After all, it wouldn’t be an authentic RuneScape game if we didn’t let you steal from market stalls, craft new items, or attack a field full of cows…
Freedom to Choose
RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg doesn’t have character classes, so, unsurprisingly, the character progression system is classless. You’re not locked into a set path or character type, which means you can level up your skills in whatever order and combination you like!
Will you be a jack of all trades, or specialise in crafting, magic, or cooking? It might be an idea to choose skills that complement those of your group but, ultimately, the decision is up to you!
Where to Go Next
That’s all from us for now, ‘Scapers! We’ll be back at the same time next week with Part 3 of the Tabletop Tutorial Island series.
Want to back the game on Kickstarter? Follow the campaign now so you’re ready for launch!
Want to get hyped with other ‘Scapers? Join the dedicated Facebook group for RuneScape Kingdoms: Shadow of Elvarg news – you can see ALL new reveals here, too!
Want to hang out with us and the video game mods? We’ll be making a guest appearance on some of the upcoming RuneScape and Old School RuneScape Twitch streams to answer your questions and talk about the new minis. Keep an eye on the Facebook group and SFG socials to find out when.