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Q&A Summary 07/04/2022

Written by developer on . Posted in OSRS News

Last week’s livestream was another much-requested lore Q&A! Topics included:

Thanks to Mod Sarnie (Community Manager), and Mod Ed (Senior Content Developer) for the chance to find out more about the wonderful world of Gielinor

Missed the livestream? Check out the full transcript below!

Question #1:

Why is there no portal for Astral, Wrath, or Soul runes in the Temple of the Eye?

Mod Ed

Those are the three altars that the Saradominists at the time didn't have access to. The Astral Altar was in the way on Lunar Isle so no one else could get to it, the Wrath Altar was already lost at that point. and the Soul Altar was, for anyone who doesn't know, the Soul Altar, the true Soul Altar, not the one on Kourend, is actually deep beneath Menaphos so it was also not available to the Saradominists, that's why those three aren't in there.

That's the lore excuse anyways, there's a gameplay excuse that the Soul Altar doesn't exist so...

Question #2:

How can we breathe and walk around if The Temple of The Eye is located deep underwater?

Mod Ed

It's in this big magic bubble, this is the best way to describe it. If you search for rewards rift there's a chance you can get a journal that mentions this weird magical bubble and that sometimes the fish fall through. The Saradominists used their magic to create a big giant bubble to put this temple in.

Mod Sarnie

I always imagined it was a bit like Sandy Cheeks' house from Spongebob.

Mod Ed

Well, I hear there might be a little Spongebob connection somewhere in the content.

Question #3:

Was the temple of the Eye always underwater, or did it sink at some point like the Everlight near the Icyene graveyard?

Mod Ed

It was always underwater, hence the bubble just mentioned. There's that certain artefact (that I'm sure we're gonna have plenty of questions on soon) which Sardomin and his motley crew did not want anyone knowing about, even their his own followers. So the temple was built underwater to keep it nice and hidden - didn't work, of course, but nice attempt.

Question #4:

Before there were numerous plot holes regarding Runecrafting. Namely, the burning of the Wizard's Tower timeline with the forgotten Runecrafting art, how fast ZMI found out about Runecrafting post the Rune Mysteries quest, and how Aubury came across a teleportation spell in the first place. It has come to my attention that these plot holes are pretty much resolved. So, could you briefly smarise the change to the Lore, namely from the Rune Mysteries Quest and Abyss related content?

Question #5:

Can you tell us more about the Guardians and ‘Them’ referenced in the Diary? Perhaps who originally created them?

Mod Ed

I think this is referring to that diary I mentioned earlier, the one you can pull out of a rift in the minigames. The guardians of the temple were created by the Justiciar of the Lion to protect the temple after the rift was opened. I don't think it's particularly spoilery, I think it's all mentioned in-game, but just in case anyone missed that; the guardians were specifically created to protect Gielinor from that rift.

Mod Sarnie

They seem to be doing a pretty good job, with a little help from us.

Question #6:

Considering the Stone of Jas is actually brought up in this quest - can we make the connection that this is confirmation we’re beginning the Elder God & Mahjarrat storyline, finally?

Mod Ed

Oh starting to get fun now, I don't know what a "Stone of Jas" is, the quest is about something called "an eye", I don't know anything about no stone.

If this was the start of a Mahjarrat storyline I wouldn't announce it on stream anyway would I? What I can say is this wasn't just to massively troll everyone, this is setting some things up for the future. We knew how important the first appearance of the Stone of Jas in Old School was, it's something that's been hinted at for a very long time, even before Old School was around, the first reference to the stone was back in 2006, I think that was when they first started appearing and it's been building up for a long time, obviously, While Guthix Sleeps in RuneScape is one of the biggest most iconic quests ever so it wasn't just a throwaway "oh this would be cool" there is definitely more plans there but they don't necessarily have to involve the Mahjarrat in all of them, the fun thing about the Stone of Jas and all that stuff is that it has been everywhere.

As for the Elder Gods; no, not in Old School. I think I spoke a bit about this on the last lore stream I was on, the Elder Gods do exist in the Old School universe, hence the stone, but we're not planning on creating any storyline revolving around them as they did in the RuneScape. We're very very keen for gods and Elder Gods to never directly appear in Old School. When I say directly appear, there might still be like a few things here and there, Song of the Elves, for example, you see these memories of Seren and obviously, you see the fragment of her, and like some of the stuff that was done with Ritual of the Mahjarrat where it had a flashback cutscene where you briefly saw Saradomin, maybe things like that we might end up doing, but, there are no plans to ever directly introduce the gods and Elder Gods. They are these mysterious beings that have long since left the world, and a lot of our quests and stories, including the ones that we're planning to tell soon, are going to be about uncovering what they left behind rather than interacting with them directly.

Question #7:

Introducing Stone of Jas to OSRS implies that we can continue the Mahjarrat storyline. Can we see Guthix die once more? How about Fist of Guthix minigame?

Question #8:

Was there a particular reason Saradomin had the Stone of Jas hidden underwater south of the coast of Morytania? Was it because it was closer to Hallowvale at the time?

Mod Ed

At the time when the stone, or Eye, was in that temple, that was before Morytania was taken over by the vampires it was still a Saradominist region called Hallowvale so it made sense for Saradomin to hide the stone in a place that was surrounded by his supporters, but, as we mentioned in that other question earlier, he still wasn't entirely trusting of his own followers, hence why the temple was hidden underwater; so even many Saradominists didn't actually know it was there.

Mod Sarnie

Saradomin is the kind of guy always looking over his shoulder I imagine.

Question #9:

When exactly did Drakan get the stone in the timeline? Before or after Saradomin took it, or after the God wars even? And can we assume after the Temple of the Eye, they moved the stone to where the fist of Guthix is at?

Mod Ed

The timeline is quite vague, some of it intentionally so, but for that bit that is the order it happened in. It was in the temple and after the temple was attacked, and the rift was opened, it wasn't safe to keep it there anymore so it got moved to The Fist of Guthix, and then later it was taken back to Morytania but at that point, it was by Zamorakians rather than Saradominists and it was entrusted to Drakan.

Question #10:

Is there a "Stone of Jas" related reason the Saradominists included altars to most of the runecrafting altars in the GotR temple, or is it just because of the stone's involvement with runecrafting?

Mod Ed

It's sort of alluded to in the quest, the temple was originally built just as a place to guard for stone. The portals, the altars actually came later, they were built once the Abyssal Rift had been opened to make it easier to defend against the Abyss and hence why they get used in the mini-game.

Question #11:

The Justiciar Zachariah was tasked with defending The Eye, but we assumedly killed him during Mage Arena 2 so we could have an imbued cape. Are there any plans to link The Order of Wizards quest line into a future Mage Arena quest, or will this just be an easter egg crossover?

Mod Ed

No plans to really do any more there, so I guess it's just an Easter egg but he's quite powerful a powerful dude, did we really kill him during Mage Arena Two? What if we just stole his hand and ran off? Maybe he'll come back later, so no plans for the moment but never say never.

Mod Sarnie

That just sums up quite anything Old School, if you describe that quest, "oh, what'd you do? "you just go steal a guy's hand, that's all you need to know".

Question #12:

Is the Dark Altar another elder artefact? Are the Tasakaal like the Dragonkin in that they are the guardians of an elder artefact?

Mod Ed

I'm not gonna directly give away massive lore reveals like that am I?

Mod Sarnie

Why not Ed? Why not?

Mod Ed

The Dark Altar and the Tasakaal are both gonna keep playing a very important part in the Kourend storyline. What can I say here without giving too much away? I guess I can say what isn't correct and then let people theorise on what might be correct. The Tasakaal, they're not like the Dragonkin in the sense that they're not guarding an Elder Artifact, Dark Altar or otherwise, they have their own motives not directly tied to their - this is really it's really hard, to say something without saying something. So, the Tasakaal, and this isn't spoilers, the Tasakaal believe they are serving a higher power, they simply believe they are, the higher power hasn't directly instructed them to do any of what they're doing, they just believe it's in the best interest of said higher power, and as for the Dark Altar... The Dark Altar is not an elder artefact. I'll say that again just to make sure we're all understanding this correctly the way I'm wording this and the way I'm emphasizing this; the "Dark Altar" is not an elder artefact. There's a bit of fun speculation for you from what I mean by that.

Question #13:

Why is the Dark Altar so unguarded after the events of The Ascent of Arceuus? Is it because Tyss is sufficiently powerful enough to repel potential entities seeking its power for the wrong reasons?

Mod Ed

Lord Arceus and his and his crew are not doing a very good job, are they? They're just like "Oh yes, someone's sabotaged a Dark Altar, shall we do anything about that?" "Oh we've stopped it for now but what do they do it again?" "Ehhhh, it'll probably all right" The excuse, and I won't even deny it I'm just making an excuse at this point, is that there are still members of House Arceus relatively close to be able to keep an eye on things.

Mod Sarnie

Awesome stuff, I highly doubt they'll leave it completely unguarded, that would be misfortunate.

Question #14:

Are there going to be further storylines that are spun off from Temple of the Eye? It opens up a very interesting storyline in the Wizard Towers v ZMI, something which hasn’t been explored a lot even in RS3, as well as dropping some hints that are very impactful in regards to other series (Vampyres, Mage Arena, Elder Gods, Zaros, Fremennik, etc).

Mod Ed

This was one of the most fun quests I've think I've ever worked on, like with Temple of the Eye just because of that list and so many different tie-ins to various other storylines and not directly part of any of them but little links to all of them so there's definitely going to be more happening here, hopefully, more than you know more than one different thing, hopefully, a few different directions. Obviously, we talked a bit earlier about like what the first appearance of the Stone of Jas actually means and you know as mentioned here is also the fun little conflict between the Order of Wizards and the ZMI so there are lots of fun things to explore.

Question #15:

The colour of Persten’s skin is a yellow shade similar to the Sea Slugs of Witchhaven, was this an intentional design decision for a potential hint to the Sea Slug quest? Or simply an oversight when designing her to look slightly different to hint that she wasn't who she appeared to be?

Mod Ed

This is another one where I have to say what is not wrong rather than what it is so we don't spoil anything. There's no connection to the sea slugs but her character design is still intentional, but it's not connected to sea slugs.

Question 16:

Was Mia Persten our first direct interaction with Sliske? Since her name is an anagram for I am Serpent.

Question #17:

How were the entrances to the blood, cosmic, and death altars destroyed? The entrances were destroyed by the Runecrafting Crusades yet it is very implausible that the Fremenniks managed to access the locations of these altars.

Mod Ed

The Fremennik only destroyed most of them, the rest were destroyed in other ways. I don't think we've ever actually specified how the Blood Altar was most likely destroyed, it's probably at some point during the war for Hallowvale when the vampires took over, similarly, the Death Altar was probably destroyed at some point in all the elven conflicts, Cosmic's a bit more interesting I don't actually have an answer on how that would have been destroyed, we've not really explored much like Fairy and Zanaris lore so might be a fun one for us to consider when we come to do more of that stuff.

Mod Sarnie

I mean this is the thing now, is that the case that we haven't explored it or secretly has Mod Ed been working in the background really diving deep into stuff like this? I don't know and I work with you!

Mod Ed

I think he was in a gazette a while back when we talked about ideation, I do have a pitch for Fairytale Three, a conclusion to the trilogy but it does not go into detail on the Cosmic Altar so maybe I'll have to go back and revisit my pitch and make it about the Cosmic Altar instead.

Question #18:

What is Mod Ed’s favourite piece of lore or storyline and why?

Mod Ed

It's really hard to pick just one, if I had to pick an absolute favourite I'd probably go with the Vampires and the Myreque.

That kind of story is right up my alley, it's very character-focused but at the same time has a lot of mystery behind it a lot of deep lore going into the history of this region and the weird creatures there and stuff like that, so it's all got all the things I love, lots of things to be digging away at, trying to work out what it all means, but at the same time, there's lots of very personal stuff as well, it brings a tear to your eye, some of those some of the moments in those storylines.

That's probably my favourite, I also do really like the Mahjarrat, a lot of that one is more about some of the stuff we were on about earlier, it's just really fun the sort of interweaving, almost puzzle-like, elements of that storyline, how everything is connected but nothing is connected sort of thing, so yeah, I think those two are probably my top ones but I don't know, I love all of them really. I say all of them, I don't really care for Sea Slugs but maybe that's just because of how it went in a RuneScape, maybe we can do a better job.

Mod Sarnie

Maybe we could, we shall see. Again, there's so much potential with quests, either existing storylines or brand new ones, that it's going to be interesting to see what the future holds and what quests we bring out

Question #19:

What did the team think of the quest backport poll which was circulated a month ago? Was there much support for it?

Question #20:

Is there any specific part of Rs3 lore the OS team is looking to avoid repeating?

Mod Ed

I think we've accidentally answered this question a few times but I'll reiterate - I do like reiterating this point because if people haven't guessed yet, I feel very strongly on this one. It's the death of Guthix, it's the return of the gods and the Elder gods, that's what we don't want to repeat. In general, it comes back into the backporting stuff we were just talking about, a lot of the stuff that happened up until, I think, the end of 2011 story-wise, most of that we're quite happy to include, or at least bits of it, in Old School on the whole, but once you start to get beyond that, not so much, the definitive cutoff is the gods returning.

Question #21:

Will we ever see a major recurring villain in Old School? RS3 had Sliske who featured in many memorable quests. Will we get our own version of Sliske considering he was foreshadowed by Ashulot Reis with the Nex release?

Mod Sarnie

I've pitched before that the sandwich lady has ulterior motives, there's control of a lot of the underbelly there, and other very dark activities.

Mod Ed

This is where it begins, just like the stuff I was on about earlier about how everyone's a Mahjarrat, that's it, you've said it now, it's confirmed, the sandwich lady is a Mahjarrat!

I guess the answer to this question is yes, and no. I don't think Old School needs one singular major recurring villain. One of the beauties of Old School is that it doesn't have one single central storyline, it has lots.

A lot of games have their main storyline which is where most of the focus is put, they'll have side storylines that are still good but perhaps have a lesser focus or lower budget. I think we have this wonderful and quite unique approach, compared to a lot of other games, that we treat all of our storylines with the same respect. They're all main storylines, none of them come second to any others. Yeah, some of them have a higher level, some have more quests, and obviously some of them the players are more fond of, like the Mahjarrat and stuff. On the whole, they all have their place and all of them have - well, most of them have villains. Most of them are recurring villains and I think we're going to do a lot more of a lot of those villain characters over the coming years. So, yes, we'll see major recurring villains. I don't think we'll see a single one, I think we've got way too many fun villain characters to ever go with just one. And as for Sliske, I mean we've talked about him a little bit already but who knows, maybe he is the sandwich lady!

Question #22:

Is there any desire to expand on the Tasakaal lore in the future? The Elder Gods have been very scarce in OSRS lore, but with the mention of Jas in the Temple of the Eye quest it brings to question if they will start making their way more into the game. In RS3 Ful is based in Karamja, commanding Zuk and the TzekHaar, but since OSRS already has Inferno and Zuk maybe she has additional ties to Kourend? It would be interesting to learn more about the Tasakaal and the Kahlith race, either in how they arrived where they are now, or perhaps they finally receive the further instruction they have been waiting for?

Mod Ed

We kind of answered this one a little bit earlier when we were talking about The Dark Altar. The Tasakaal, they're very important to the Kourend storyline, so expect them to keep popping up in that storyline. You should expect to learn more about them and the stuff they're up to. On the Elder gods' side, as we've already mentioned before, the Elder gods are canon in Old School, they are a thing that exists in the Old School universe but they're not something we ever want to explore too deeply, because the mystery behind them is more fun. The question has been asked now about five times about the gods returning and whatnot but for the Tasakaal, the focus will mainly be on the Kourend side of things.

Question #23:

With the shift of focus to big and small quests starting to happen, do you think we will ever get the Thieves Guild questline from rs3 put into OSRS? (Buyers and Cellars, From Tiny Acorns, Lost Her Marbles, A Guild of our Own).

Mod Ed

Probably not? I couldn't say 100%, but this is one of the ones where there's some stuff we'd rather do our own way when it comes to the Thieves Guild. I think we actually mentioned some of this in a Gazette quite a while ago but we have an internal pitch for a Thieves Guild called the "Guild of Shadows", that is a bit more narrative-driven than a lot of the other guilds we've done. Right now we're probably more likely to go with that rather than going with the Thieves Guild as it was in RuneScape,

Question #24:

Will we ever get a bit more Crandor lore? It used to be as huge as Varrock, yet we rarely ever hear about it outside of Dragon Slayer.

Mod Ed

Nothing planned at the moment, but it seems an obvious one to include if/when we do more with Fourth Age and Fifth Age storytelling and more dragon stuff. So nothing at the moment, but no reason why we couldn't one day.

Question #25:

I really hope that the Red Axe storyline gets finished eventually. Are there any plans on finishing this storyline or at least expanding on it?

Mod Ed

This is one of the ones that was included in the survey that we mentioned earlier. Where this storyline goes will probably depend on what we decide to do with the results of said survey. It was actually the next two quests in that storyline that were both on the survey, the two quests being "Forgiveness of a Chaos Dwarf" and "King of the Dwarves". We are relatively happy with the quality of both of those and where they fit in Old School, maybe with a few tweaks here and there. We might end up choosing to go ahead with both of those. If we did, that would still leave us with one more quest after which we'd want to do our own take on because the last quest in RuneScape, Birthright of the Dwarves I believe, came after the gods had returned it. It started to allude to some of that stuff so we'd want to go in a different direction

This one's up in the air at the moment, there are no immediate plans. We do definitely want to finish this storyline we want to finish all storylines. I was mentioning earlier about how none are more important or less important than the others, they all deserve to get their finale at some point. As for when this one will happen, it'll depend on what we decide to do following on from that backporting survey.

Question #26:

The Shayzien Crypts were built long before the founding of Kourend, yet have Xerician symbolism all around. Why is that? Is Xeric the reason for the tomb being overrun with undead? And what of the bloody tomb found collapsed into the floor across Camorra's tomb? Was that the tomb of King Shayzien VII?

Mod Ed

The Crypts were built a very long time ago, they actually pre-exist Kourend,, and most of Shayzien itself. They've been expanded on over time, so different parts of the tomb are from different eras. Maybe there are parts of the tomb we haven't even seen yet see that that's why there's Xerician stuff in there, it came later.

As for the tomb being overrun,, yeah it probably is connected to all those symbols around and that bloody tomb that collapsed into the floor,... but I'm not going to say any more than that am I? That would be a spoiler.

Question #27:

We know about multiple canon, yet unreleased, areas in the world originally designed by the playerbase; the Avium Savannah, Tepestus, Civita Illa Fortis, to name a few. One particular uncharted region has been a hot topic amongst mapmakers, yet has not been confirmed by any official source to be canonised. Can you give us confirmation that the settlement of Auburnvale exists on Gielinor?

Mod Ed

I can't give any confirmation because nothing is canon until it goes in-game. I could say something on this stream and then tonight go "you know what I've changed my mind, that lore is a bit terrible to be honest".

Mod Sarnie

I feel like you do that out of spite anyway.

Mod Ed

Nothing is ever a hundred percent confirmed, but one of the things that we've been very keen to draw on is Varlamore, there's been so much support and enthusiasm from players when it comes to Varlamore, like the drawing maps and stuff - Especially after there was a lot of dissatisfaction with the original Kourend release. That's why we've pulled so many names from the player suggestions and there is currently, in the current Varlamore pitch, which is by no means final, and by no means canon anyway, there is an Auburnvale. It is a little bit different story-wise to what any of the player suggestions have been, but there is a settlement with that name currently.

Question #28:

Is the Scar ever going to be expanded upon further, and even more, are we, the players, ever going to be able to go there?

Mod Ed

Yeah. Nice and straightforward. That is one of the things from Temple of the Eye that we intend to explore further. When? How? Why? Who could say, maybe we'll see if Persten survived after all, who knows?

Question #29:

What is the Zarosian symbol in the snowy area west of the Wintertodt? Is this hinting at some Zarosian involvement in Kourend? It’s been theorised that the symbol is Skotizo’s point of arrival after he took the Dark Altar from Karamja, hinting he was never a Zamorakian.

Mod Ed

Here's the thing, we sit here and I answer all these questions, with such confidence like "wow this guy really knows what he's all about. He knows all this lore", but I have no idea! Mod West put that symbol there and I don't what it's for, so I don't actually have an answer. The great thing about Mod West is that he loves to throw little things in that, sometimes, have huge deep meaning and sometimes they're just complete trolls, and you never know which is which. I don't actually know which it is for this one. I don't know if he's trolling us or what he's planning with that one. I don't actually have an answer, unfortunately.

As for the theory, Skotizo’s point of arrival... maybe? I don't know. How would Skotizo get there? Take a ship? Would he be able to teleport? These are the deep questions now, do demons use ships? I've never really thought about it before.

Mod Sarnie

I imagine Mod West has his own plans for that symbol...

Question #30:

A lesser question concerning the Lesser Gods of the Menaphite Pantheon: one point of divergence between the lore of OSRS and RS3 is the associations given to these Lesser Gods (for example Crondis being revised to be the patron of modesty and resourcefulness in RS3, while still being the protector deity of sensory pleasure in OSRS). Will the Lesser Gods be making an appearance in Beneath Cursed Sands, and if so, will they be reinterpreted in a similar way?

Question #31:

Is Zanaris (on) the moon in OSRS? There's only one piece of in-game lore that points that way, and I was wondering if it's canonically so.

Mod Ed

Yep, the moon is called Zanaris and the city there is also called Zanaris.

Question #32:

During Dragon Slayer II, Zorgoth perceived the player character as someone who was a close friend of Robert the Strong in their past life. ("Ah, I see you brought your friend with you. I'm surprised to see you here after all this time. Curious.") It is only one line, and you're immediately interrupted by Dallas before you can get any sort of clarification. Who was Zorgoth referring to when he spoke to you? Will we ever get that answer in a future quest?

Mod Ed

Zorgoth was referring to a player, he did not make any mistake there, he recognised the player. As for what that means, "answered in a future quest" - not a quest that is planned for any time soon. There is a lot of other stuff we want to do first but Dragon Slayer II was never intended to be a finale. There were always plans for more Dragonkin after that. There are other hints in that quest, in fact in that very room where you meet Zorgoth, to let you know it's not over yet!

It was such a fun thing to throw those teases in Dragon Slayer II, and up until now - what was it, like four years later - no one's actually asked me about them! People speculate so much about the Mahjarrat and there were a few fun things we included in Dragon Slayer II. Personally, while I'm not biased or anything, I don't think there's been anywhere near enough speculation yet on some of the things that happened in Dragon Slayer II...

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