With the onset of a new type of uber-skills dubbed 'elite skills' by Jagex in the works, they have laid the groundwork for the future of this game and really gave a promise to legitimate end game content that will hopefully be the new prestigious 99s that regular skills' 99s were years ago. I gotta be honest, as someone who has fallen out of love for RS recently, this announcement has really maxed out my hype meter and would really get me back full steam ahead in game. It makes perfect sense - take a complicated or overlapping activity or concept and take the existing basic skills to create a new combination skill. There's a lot of hype and a lot of ideas out there, and I'd like to list my top 5 ideas for possible elite skills. Since Invention is already going to be a thing, it's not included.
Possible skills involved: Construction, Crafting, Fletching
You can't mention elite skills without mentioning the possibility of sailing actually becoming a thing. As a basic skill, no, it wouldn't have much use or purpose, but as an elite skill it actually does have some merit worth exploring. Incorporating this into Player Owned Ports (PoP) makes great sense, perhaps by having a flagship that you yourself are the captain of, which you can outfit with expanded options moreso than the basic PoP fleet. It seems like a great way to sink materials and possibly gain access to some of the Eastern Land islands and possibly other islands we've heard about without having to fully flesh out a backstory or ecosystem on those new areas.
Possible skills involved: Mining, Dungeoneering, Theiving
There are many digsites and historical battlefields scattered around RuneScape - now's our chance to gain new knowledge and possibly possess ancient powers and items with archaeology. Think pyramid plunder on steroids. Going around to the ruins of RS and digging up items could greatly enrich the lore of the game as well as give ancient magicks something more to go off of than just the desert spells. We could also access new armors, much like barrows but with greater variety and specialty.
Possible skills involved: Construction, Runecafting, Divination
We have an observatory in RuneScape that is relatively worthless and telescopes that we've never looked through with any real meaning or purpose. With the recent Tuska event, we now know that other worlds and not just different planes exist in the universe. Use this newfound knowledge to explore the galaxy and possibly visit other planets to fight new monsters, access new quests and items, and fight new alien bosses. Astro-raids anyone?
Possible skills involved: Summoning, Prayer, Magic
This has been right up there in possibility since the concept of elite skills has been announced. Necromancy is commonly thought of as deceased creatures being brought back to life in some form. I originally hated the concept of this as a skill because it is basically Summoning, but the more people talk about the possibilities and how it could vary from Summoning, the more I like it. This would give charms new purpose outside of just normal Summoning and give Prayer a tangible use in creating items/creatures. Think of something like the current Tower of Life (with similar item sink mechanics) but more useful and practical. High level content would be the possibility to bring deceased NPCs back to life or at least be able to talk to them to either gain an exp bonus or unlock further content. The tippy top of the skill's levels? Tapping the essence of Guthix for insight and wisdom since his death.
Skills involved: Farming, Construction, Hunter
With a major addition to player's houses, we could see Homesteading, where we run our own farm complete with bigger crop plots and raising various livestock and creatures to benefit from. Much like Miscellania, we would be doing maintenance and doing upgrading to various aspects of the farm to eventually profit from bigger and better end products. Start out with some corn and cows and by the end of the skill we could be growing crystal tree groves and raising black dragons for their hides and bones. A daily reward based on how well maintained and your skill levels could be given so we can reap from what we've sowed. Depending on the intricacy, we could hire farmhands (like the current butlers) to help or even carry out tasks for us in case we weren't able to get around to the daily chores.
Of course, these are only a small glimpse of what could be possible with elite skills and what immediately comes to mind. It's highly demanding content, but elite skills have the potential to fix a lot of things that are wrong with skills and the economy of RS. Do you have a better idea for an elite skill? Let me know in the comments and maybe I'll do a follow up to this article after we get more details about what all is possible with elite skills.