It is hard to believe that Mining and Smithing rework came out six months ago. There have been very few updates that have had such a huge impact on the game the way the Mining and Smithing rework has. The reimagining of these two skills still feels natural and it is becoming harder to remember the way the skills used to be. Jagex has also done a good job watching and making adjustments when need be. It hasn't been all lollipops and rainbows though, there have been some issues to work out. Stone spirits are still an issue and Smithing has been an adjustment for some players. This month let's dig into the Mining skill and see if it is still as good as we thought on release. Then, we will take a look at the Smithing skill to see what changes, if any, need to be made so it can forge ahead.
The Mining skill rework is the gold standard of skill reworks. Jagex went into the rework wanting to address certain aspects of Mining and make it better. First off they made mining more social. I can remember mining and seeing another player coming and thinking this guy better keep on walking. Making ore noncompetitive has really changed the way you think when you see another player coming. On top of that, there is so much variety now in what is available to mine. The rockertunities mechanic has worked well for those who actively mine, however, the changes they made to make it more afk is where this rework really shines. Mining has always been a grind, and a not fun one on top of that. Making it more afk was the right call. It has given players the opportunity to do mining in a much more relaxed way. This change can help players be more social if they chose by being able to follow and participate in chat far easier. If there has been one drawback it is that ore prices remain low and it's not the money making skill Jagex hoped for. At first, it was suspected that there was just so much ore in the game that it would take time for the market to stabilize. Now that we are six months in, it has become obvious that it's not that, but rather the popularity of the skill now is bringing in more ore than smithing can use. In effect making it a victim of its own success in this way. The other sticking point with mining is stone spirits. PVM players are still not happy with the value of them and they are probably contributing to the oversupply of ore. While the simplest and easiest solution would be to remove them Jagex seems reluctant to do so. They are going to replace adamant with runite stone spirits on Telos' drop table but I don't foresee this having much effect. All and all the mining rework has been a success. We need to make sure Jagex knows that this is exactly the kind of update the players want and the game needs.
Smithing is still good, but it needs a little more attention than Mining has. When it comes to high-intensity training smithing is pretty solid. Smithing showcases the active vs passive gameplay models very well. The problem lies in that it may be a little too punishing to passive gameplay and needs a few tweaks. In some ways, smithing was the opposite of mining. Mining was a slow and tedious skill made faster and less tedious. Smithing, on the other hand, wasn't slow and was made slower. This perception persists no matter what the truth may be because of the way you smith one item at a time. This has led to people not wanting to smith as much and invention components seem to be in shorter supply because of it. This is especially true for ironmen. On top of that smithing hasn't turned out to be the money maker the players had hoped for either. With all this, you are probably wondering how it can be considered a success. The smithing update is successful because it does three things really well. First, the high-intensity Smithing is spot on. If you are into high-intensity skilling it's hard to beat the Smithing rework. Second, and probably most important, it fixed the smithing tiers and has opened up a whole new world of weapons and armor we couldn't make before. Third, it has made smithing feel more immersive. I still feel more involved now and I love the little touches of sound they made.
One thing we can look forward to with the Smithing skill are some improvements coming in June. One big change is coming to the auto heater. The auto heater is going to have a supercharge mode that will cost the player fifty coal every time it activates but will give you 60% heat instead of 30%. Another change coming will be the ability to start multiple projects. When you finish with one it will just move on to the next in your inventory. These changes are aimed to balance out the passive gameplay approach. In effect, it will make afk Smithing much more rewarding. Another thing we should be mindful of is the weapon diversity project that has just entered beta. We don't know if some of these weapons will be smithable but I would hope so. It could help the profitability of Smithing. The most important thing to remember is that Jagex is watching and keeping an eye on these reworks. They didn't just make it and forget about it and that is reassuring.
The Mining and Smithing rework is the best update I've had the pleasure of playing. It's second only to Prifddinas in my book. Mining has achieved everything it set out to do, and it's one failure is due to its popularity. It doesn't get any better than that. Smithing has been a little more complex but it did something that I wasn't even sure could be done and fixed a broken tier system that had been in place since RuneScape classic. Smithing will continue to improve and there is every reason to believe that the weapon diversity project will touch smithing in some way making it more profitable. It is important that if you liked this update make sure Jagex knows it. They seem leery of putting that much dev time into another full rework like that. That is why they need to know it was the right choice and we would like to see more of these. I look forward to what the future could bring following the outline of the mining and smithing rework. With that being said enjoy your summer and until next time, Happy RuneScaping.