YMMV: RuneScape

  • Anticlimax Boss:
    • Prior to the rework of the Demon Slayer quest, Delrithnote  had fewer hit points than a cow or an imp. In fact, depending on your combat levels, you were more at risk of getting killed by the surrounding Dark Wizards who, despite their relative weakness, could get quite annoying with their ranged magical attacks.
    • Mother Mallum, who has a pillar dropped on her; your own character never battles her.
  • Anvilicious:
    • Perils of Ice Mountain, so very much. The puns didn't help either.
    • Jagex's constant Character Shilling for the Godless faction in storylines, events and quests has gotten more heavy-handed and boringly predictable over time.
  • Author's Saving Throw: "Roving Elves" has shades of this toward "Waterfall Quest." The latter quest has you plundering a sacred tomb, which is rather awkwardly presented as a positive thing. Later, in the former quest, you meet the very angry grandson of the owner of that tomb, who demands you make things right.
  • Awesome Music: See AwesomeMusic.Runescape.
  • Badass Decay: Guthix, Saradomin and Zamorak, coinciding with their collective retcon from abstract, nigh-omnipotent godly entities to essentially super-powered mortals. Similarly, protection prayers were nerfed from boss-dominating Game Breaker abilities to be only 50% effective at best. Considering that they nearly wrecked the whole of Gielinor the last time they fought, Saradomin, Zamorak, Armadyl and Bandos are surprisingly small and unimposing in-game. Word of God confirms this is due to to them being Shrouded in Myth in-universe; they're legitimately extremely powerful, but being disappeared for millennia their stories evolved to portray them as even stronger, particularly Saradomin, whose cult evolved into borderline monotheism with Zamorak as an inferior Satan-figure.
  • Best Level Ever: Several of the quests qualify.
    • While Guthix Sleeps is a quest that is near-universally acclaimed for the level of immersion featured in the quest and the impact on the world of Runescape at large. The fact that the rewards include 400k experience in any skill over Level 65 and the ability to forge your own Dragon Platebody helps this as well.
    • Beyond quests, several boss fights qualify. For example, the Queen Black Dragon, a monster so large that you only ever see her head and hands. It requires 60 Summoning to even fight her, and you have to do it alone. Being able to kill this thing is the mark that a player has mastered the game.
  • Broken Base:
    • In December 2007, Jagex made the bold move of eliminating all means of large-scale private wealth transfer in an effort to combat bots and gold farmers. Among other things, this meant no more trading items with a net loss/gain of more than 3000 gold and no more unrestrained Player Versus Player combat in the wilderness. This led quite a few people to quit "RuinedScape". Eventually, the changes were reversed, in favour of new mechanics designed to combat macros and bots.
    • Crept into the RuneScape community once again in 2012, courtesy of the introduction of Microtransactions via the Squeal of Fortune and Solomon's General Store. Worthy addition to the game? Blatant cash-grab by Jagex? You decide!
    • The Evolution of Combat. Or, as some likes to call it, Evilution of Combat.
    • In early 2013, Jagex introduced dedicated "Old School RuneScape" servers, running a complete version of the game from back in August 2007. This went just fine until the divisions really kicked off with the announcement that a highly-anticipated and lore-critical Grandmaster-level quest (among other possible updates) was being pushed back, simply due to the sheer amount of resources dedicated to resurrecting the older version.note 
    • In early 2014, Jagex used the newly-implemented player poll system to float the idea of reintroducing old-style combat into the modern game (alongside the existing Evolution of Combat abilities). Naturally, this split the player base between those who want the change back to the older style, those who think it is a waste of time, and those who wish Jagex had made the announcement before thousands of players spent most of a year on the "Old School" servers to get away from "EoC" in the first place.
    • The base fragments yet again with the ongoing development of "Legacy Mode", which basically reverts the combat mechanics, interfaces and other elements back to RuneScape 2. There's division within the divisions with Jagex's developers noting that the Legacy Mode users will not be doing as much damage as the users of EoC, and therefore will not earn experience nearly as quickly as the former. On top of that, Jagex has also mentioned that game content will continue to be designed around EoC anyways, without much regard for Legacy Mode, meaning that the players in Legacy Mode will not be capable of doing all the activities, boss fights, and so on that EoC players will be able to enjoy.
    • While "Plague's End" is far from universally loathed and is considered a perfectly fine quest taken on its own, taken as the Grand Finale to the extremely long-running Elf quest series, quite a few players found it an anticlimax, mostly due to it actually being easier (relative to the level a player is likely to have when taking it on, anyway) than two of its predecessors, Underground Pass and Mourning's End II. The Reveal that the hinted-at Bigger Bad was actually the dark side of the Elf goddess Seren, and not Zamorak or Zaros as commonly theorized, also got a mixed reception.
    • Also controversial has been the retooling of some of the game's oldest, easiest quests such as "Demon Slayer," "Black Knight's Fortress," and especially "Romeo and Juliet" to be more complex, more lore-intensive and darker in tone. Fans can't agree at all whether these are much-needed fixes to extremely outdated content, or unnecessary Cerebus Retcons making the game darker for the Hell of it.
  • Catharsis Factor: "Plague's End" has been called anticlimactic as a Grand Finale and as a Grandmaster-level quest, but after over a decade of waiting for this last act in the Elf and Plague series, it is downright awesome to personally curbstomp and/or actually kill off all of the Mourners, King Lathas and his numerous paladin bodyguards, Lord Iorwerth and his underlings, and the heretofore-unseen "Dark Lord" itself. This is subverted somewhat, as the Dark Lord is really just a warped fragment of Seren, who as an Actual Pacifist has done nothing to warrant your frustration.
    • Virtually every other positive character in the series gets a chance to bite back at Lathas and Iorwerth, too. Councilor Halgrive, Lathas's deputy, after hearing of his King's wrongdoing makes you commander of the army. Bravek, the city warder of West Ardougne who'd been forced to keep up the lie also gives you his support. Elena and the other West Ardougne activists you've met get to lead a revolution. General Hining, the very angry best friend and right-hand-man to the betrayed and murdered King Tyras, gets to lead his army in an outright massacre of Iorwerth's. And finally, the Elven Elders, driven into exile by Iorwerth, get to activate the lock that seals their people's old enemy, the Dark Lord, away for good.
  • Cliché Storm: "Forgiveness of a Chaos Dwarf" to the Buddy Cop genre.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Sigmund is a total xenophobe willing to go to any lengths to see the peaceful cave goblin race driven to extinction. He is a leader of H.A.M., or Humans Against Monsters, a human supremacist-cult that believes all races perceived as monsters must be exterminated. Even his comrades consider his methods too extreme, and Sigmund eventually defects when he believes the organization has gotten too soft. His first attempt to destroy the cave goblins is to spark a war between them and the human city of Lumbridge, not at all caring about the human lives lost. When that fails, he tries to flood the goblin capital, but fails when resurrected cave goblin Zanik reveals his plot despite him having previously tortured her to death. Unwilling to give up, he tries to have Zanik run over by a Dwarven train to cause a devastating war that would annihilate both races. After failing numerous times, Sigmund's final plot is to poison the cave goblin youth and personally lead his gathered army to slaughter the goblins as they're weak and defenseless. A racist and relentless warmonger, Sigmund served as one of Runescape's earliest and most evil villains.
    • King Lathas Ardignas and Warmaster Lord Iorwerth are two power-hungry tyrants and the main antagonists of the Elf/Plague quest series. Iorwerth began his bid for dominance of the Elven capital of Prifddinas when he allied with the Dark Lord, a death-obsessed part of Seren. He cut off the Elven clans from communicating with their goddess, purged thousands of Elves in the ensuing civil war, and spent hundred of years hunting down the remaining rebels. In the present day he allies with Lathas, the King of Kandarin, who seeks to claim the entirety of the kingdom from his brother Tyras and destroy Camelot. Their master plan involves fabricating a great plague and having Iorwerth's clansmen, disguised as the Mourners, kidnap citizens of Tyras's kingdom and force them to mine a path to the Dark Lord's prison. They accomplish this by poisoning the city's food supplies and enslaving the civilians that appear sick. Lathas eventually tricks the player into assassinating his brother, but the player retaliates by warding the Dark Lord's prison. Iorwerth's last ditch attempt involves sacrificing the people of West Ardougne in a great ritual and using their souls to empower the Dark Lord, or failing that, using his own men as they are defeated by Tyras's vengeful soldiers. Lathas callously plans to turn the depopulated ruins into his own personal garden. In a world cursed by scheming Mahjarrat, rampaging Dragonkin, and wrathful Gods, the mortals Lathas and Iorwerth truly stand out for their willingness to sacrifice their own people to fuel their megalomania.
    • Amascut, the overarching villain of the Desert Saga, became one of Gielinor's greatest evils when she became The Devourer. Born to the Menaphite gods Tumeken and Elidinis, Amascut was the goddess of rebirth and worked alongside her brother Icthlarin to shepard the dead to the afterlife. This all changed when her brother conscripted the Mahjarrat to fight the invading Zarosian Empire, and Amascut allegedly grew disgusted with their use of ritual sacrifice to retain longevity. Becoming The Devourer, Amascut blamed her family and swore to cause nothing but obliteration to everything physical and spiritual. She created monsters to devour souls in the underworld, erasing them from existence, merely to spite her brother. When her parents were banished, she began her bid for dominance by getting rid of the lesser desert gods. While how she managed to get most banished is unknown, the fate she delivered upon Apmeken, goddess of friendship, was by far the cruelest. She ripped away Apmeken's senses, turned them into demons, and had them slaughter Apmeken's sentient monkey followers. Her plans in modern times involved spreading war and conflict among the mortal populations of the desert. She tried to incite war between Al-Kharid and Menaphos by ransoming the kidnapped prince in exchange for the Kharid-ib diamond, managing to steal the diamond and its power in the process. She also created plagues that devastated Sophanem and tricked the followers of Scabaras into attacking the city to try to incite wars throughout the region. Her ultimate goal is to cause as much death and destruction as possible to give her more souls to devour and put the fear of death into the people of Gielinor.
    • Bandos, The Big High War God, is a true believer in Might Makes Right and War is Glorious. As a mortal, Bandos happily murders the sleeping god, Jodoku Otoku, despite knowing its death would lead to the extinction of all life on his homeworld. Now a god, he traveled to the world of Yu'biusk, homeworld of goblins, orks, and orges, and transformed its inhabitants from peaceful hunter-gatherers to a brutish horde to serve as his soldiers, worshipers, and playthings. Marching his new army to the world of Gielinor, he ecstatically led them to battle during the cataclysmic God Wars. Constantly betraying his allies and spreading wanton slaughter, Bandos fought simply for the thrill of war. Eventually banished from Gielinor by Guthix at the end of the Third Age, Bandos took his frustration out on his remaining followers on Yu'biusk. He manipulated the remaining tribes into waging a war of total annihilation that turned Yu'biusk into a lifeless wasteland, just like Bandos' homeworld. In an attempt to return to Gielinor, he made Zanik, a member of the tribe of goblins that rebelled against him, into his Chosen Commander to lead his followers to wage total war on the rest of the world. Despite failing yet again, he returns following the death of Guthix with the intentions of killing the others gods and claiming the Stone of Jas and use its power to wage endless war across the universe. Hated and feared by mortals and gods alike, Bandos perfectly represents everything that can go wrong when a mortal ascends to godhood.
  • Creator's Pet:
    • Jagex's developers miss no chance to gush about their adoration for Sliske the Mahjarrat, whom they have already managed to build into an invincible, invulnerable and unstoppable Villain Sue.
    • One possible example is Zamorak. Originally, the loser of the Battle of Lumbridge was going to be sent "into oblivion". Once it was shown that Zamorak was losing, Jagex changed it to a mere power loss. Now, in the quest "Dishonour Among Thieves", Zamorak gets back to his previous level of power, regardless of what you do. In Fate of the Gods, you were able to at least (maybe temporarily) weaken Zaros.
    • Similarly, the Godless faction have been on the receiving end of a sizable amount of favouritism from Jagex. Originally, they were just the Underdogs Never Lose remnant of Guthix's followers; now they count Expanded Universe heroine Kara-Meir and Ensemble Darkhorse boss Vorago amongst their numbers, and function as the default faction for players joining the Tuska world event (the better to give them a leg up to win it, of course).
  • Crosses the Line Twice: In Dimension of Disaster, you travel to an Alternate Universe version of Varrock, where most of the citizens are dead, and those that aren't are zombified. The dead have various things written on their gravestones, from Party Pete playing with Itchlarian's torch to the point where he abandoned him halfway to the underworld, to Romeo and Juliet, sans heads. These include Gertrude's four children. One of them is completely unrelated to the others, but the rest...
    Shilop Fairweather. Mauled by a giant, sabre-toothed wildcat.
    Wilough Fairweather. Died laughing while watching his brother being mauled by a giant sabre-toothed wildcat.
    Kanel Fairweather. Tripped over his brother, who had died laughing while watching his other brother being mauled by a wildcat.
  • Damsel Scrappy: Pauline Polaris, who runs the Livid Farm minigame. Livid Farm is already one of the most hated minigames in the game, due to it being an incredibly repetitive activity that takes a minimum of 44 hours and 50 minutes to earn all the spell rewards, which are required for the completionist cape. The fact that the minigame exists because Pauline bit off more than she could chew with a strain of fast-growing plants, and the fact that she needs constant encouragementnote  make her one of the most hated characters in the game.
  • Designated Hero / Villain Protagonist: The so-named Wise Old Man, although he seems to be an intentional example. He's remembered fondly by various NPCs in-game and is a key character in a few quests, but his pastimes generally involve abusing his powers to break into banks and rob or murder innocents just because he feels he got shortchanged for heroic deeds in the past.
  • Dork Age: A regular complaint from segments of the Broken Base is that the latest update or rework has ruined the game forever and that some past era was always better. Between the Squeal of Fortune and the Evolution of Combat, however, this sentiment seems to have really come to a head during the reign of current RuneScape head Mark Gerhard. The sheer amount of player outcry prompted the creation of separate servers running an "old school" version of RuneScape dating from mid-2007, and online player counts are significantly down from historical highsnote , leading to frequent assertions of being a game in decline.
  • Dude, Not Funny! / Cruelty Is the Only Option: The 2012 Easter event. The Easter Bunny is out of action with an injury, so the player gets the choice of serving either the Evil Chicken or the Chocatrice (both villains). The task? Go around Gielinor using your newly-acquired "Eggsterminator" to break the Easter eggs and convert their fluffy contents into either chicken drumsticks or chocolate.
  • Ear Worm:
    • Many of the earlier music tracks are very catchy, especially the main theme, and some of the later ones too.
    • Bard Roberts on Mos Le'Harmless can sing you a shanty recapping any one of the pirate quests. This comes complete with voice acting.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: General Graardor has loads of fans, and it seems Jagex has picked up on this, as he functioned as the game's mascot for a while.
    • The Signature Heroes are pretty popular as well. Xenia may be the exception due to sending you on a quest she could've effortlessly done herself to test you, putting the bad guys' hostage in jeopardy. Not that this particular quest is much harder for you, though.
    • Zanik. At one point, she was arguably the most popular NPC in the game, and is off having adventures of her own after her quest line is done, which include trekking through Morytania, attempting the TzHaar Fight Caves, and absolutely owning the Ranging Guild's archery contest, despite the guild members saying a crossbow isn't as good as a "real" bow. Sadly, this has been downplayed as of late due to The Mighty Fall giving her a... less-than-attractive graphical update, aligning her with divisive Godless faction, and giving the player the option to kill her at the end of the quest, which several players argue makes no sense why this choice was even given.
  • Everybody Hates Hades: Subverted big time with Icthlarin, the Menaphite god of the Underworld. He's responsible for bringing a race of Humanoid Abominations into Runescape, but he's learned from his mistakes and wants to protect the souls of the dead from his sister. During Missing Presumed Death, players chose to support Icthlarin in larger numbers than any other faction, despite him being a demigod in a room full of gods.
  • Fan Hater: Loads. Many people view it as a poor man's World of Warcraft, and saying anything positive about it on some websites will get you laughed off the internet.
  • Fanon Discontinuity:
    • After the release of "Salt in the Wound", a popular theory amongst the fanbase was that the entire quest was nothing more than a delusion brought on by Mother Mallum. This is because the fanbase refused to accept the events of the quest as canon and violently ridiculed it to the point where many believe the quest's developer left the company solely to avoid further ridicule.
    • A sizable number of players do not regard Dungeoneering as a "real" skill but rather as a glorified minigame.
    • Ashdale, the new tutorial, due to setting the start of the player's adventure in the Sixth Age, essentially meaning all Fifth Age content could not have happened, despite the players actions being a huge part of why the Sixth Age even began in the first place.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: During the 2011 Christmas Event in relation to the 2010-released Grandmaster Quest "The Void Stares Back". For those who did the available-for-all Christmas event before one of the highest-requirement quests in the game, Wizard Grayzag mentions that he desires to become the greatest summoner in the world in a semi-joking way while he faces opponents in friendly Snowman-summoning battles. During "The Void Stares Back", it is revealed he has been killing Void Knights for 20 years through the pests to prove this. For those who did the quest before the Christmas Event, these lines are instead said by a Suspiciously Similar Substitute named Wizard Whitezag, serving as a Call Back instead.
  • Game Breaker:
    • Ancient Effigies are sometimes considered this for skilling. They allow a player to gain 90k+ xp without training those skills at all, are semi-rare combat drops, and essentially allow player to train non-combat skills in combat. The fact that effigies require 90+ levels in pretty much every skill to be very useful makes this less of an issue to most people. However, this has since been nerfed to only being able to store 5 at a time in your bank, with each one reducing the drop rate of the next.
    • A few combat weapons and spells also came to mind, some eventually getting nerfed. Ice Barrage is one of the most memorable in its glory days for making any PvP game laughably easy, and Dragon Claws once went for hundreds of millions due to their special attack being essentially a one-hit kill if the user uses a setup focused on maximum strength.
  • Gateway Series: Many millenials grew up with this game around elementary or middle school, and this was likely their first encounter with the MMORPG genre ever.
  • Goddamned Bats:
    • Wild dogs in Brimhaven dungeon and Shadows in the Temple of Light. They're not difficult to take down, but they keep on coming, and they interrupt whatever else you're doing.
    • Ghasts. When just crossing the Myre they sometimes destroy your food, and during Temple Trekking they have annoyingly high HP and drop little loot. You can kill them but the items required to do so are irritating to gather.
    • Vampyre juvinates east of Burgh de Rott. If you're trying to farm Vyre Corpses, get used to scrambling around to avoid them, because they're everywhere.
  • Goddamned Boss: Quite a few.
    • Loads of these now exist in Dungeoneering. AsteaFrostweb is relatively low-level, but she freezes you in place and puts up prayers that make her immune to certain types of damage.
    • The Fight Caves minigame has Tz-Tok Jad at the end, his attacks are fairly easy to dodgenote , but if you mess up, he can easily One-Hit KO you and you have to start from the beginning of the caves, which typically takes 2-3 hours to complete.
    • Plane-Freezer Lakhrahnaz's room is covered in Frictionless Ice. It has a knockback attack it loves to spam.
    • Fitting for The Scrappy, Yelps is not so much hard as just hideously annoying. Fought in The Mighty Fall, Yelps has a mountain of HP and can't be damaged until his goblin bodyguards are killed. He also has an immensely irritating special attack where he spins around with his sword and teleports around the arena. Getting caught by his spin attack does ridiculous amounts of damage, and it's hard to dodge. On the bright side, at the end of the fight, you finally get the chance to kill the little bastard. And There Was Much Rejoicing.
  • He's Just Hiding:
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In July of 2013, the quest Bringing Home the Bacon was released in which the player builds a machine to train pigs for various tasks. The following month, Amnesia: A Machine For Pigs became available for preorder.
  • Hype Backlash:
    • "Plague's End", the Grand Finale to the Elf series, was released after twelve years of buildup, and the end result might seem to some as if Jagex just released the quest for the sake of getting it over with as hastily as possible so that they can go back to pushing their latest Myth Arc about about the Elder Artifacts and Elder Gods. However, Prifddinas was very well-received, which helped mitigate a lot of the backlash.
    • Some Grand Finale quests suffer from this:
      • "Birthright of the Dwarves" is just a final attack on the Red Axe base that requires some fetching before doing it, reveals mostly trivial things, and then the player is hit with the fact that even the Big Bad had actually given up on his plans a long time ago and that you are just killing him because he is still there. It's then followed by one of the most brutal and unfair boss fights ever to be released.
      • "Salt in the Wound" is just a long trek through a dungeon to kill Mother Mallum after first fetching something to kill her, contains no big reveals, introduces characters that are just there to form the party, leaves Mallum (infamously) as The Unfought at the big confrontation, is filled with Plot Holes — is there any wonder why this is considered Fanon Discontinuity by a sizable subset of players?
  • I Am Not Shazam: The bosses in the God Wars Dungeon are commonly misreferred to as Saradomin, Zamorak, Bandos, and Armadyl, after the gods they worship. Their real names are Commander Zilyana, K'ril Tsutsaroth, General Graardor, and Kree'arra.
  • I Knew It:
    • The Rewards Trader is Marmaros.
    • Koschei the Deathless revealed to be Kharshai, which was correctly theorized by a large part of the fanbase.
  • Internet Backlash: Oh so many times, most infamously after the removal of the old Wilderness PvP and free trade in 2007. It continued long after that, and three years later Jagex decided to undo that particular change.
  • It Was His Sled:
    • Much of the history of Zaros is well known to those who care for the plot, despite much of it coming from Master-tier quests. Still, most Zarosian armour and weapons are never referred to as such, instead being referred to by the word "Ancient".
      • Lampshaded in Movario's notes:
      First, we have Zamorak, the Mahjarrat god who wielded the staff to gain power and fight the 'Nameless One' (whose name is Zaros: doesn't everyone know this already?).
    • Guthix's death. Despite happening at the end of a grandmaster quest, due to being referenced in almost every piece of content since the start of the Sixth Age, it's widely known.
  • Junk Rare:
    • It's possible, but extremely rare, to randomly receive 100 silver ore as a drop from most monsters with drop tables. Otherwise, silver ore is a common item, and even a hundred of them are only worth a few thousand gold in total. The dragon spear is obtained through a similar system (an extremely rare drop from the same wide variety of enemies) and is also very close to completely worthless.
    • Clue scrolls occasionally reward the player with rare and valuable items... and other times, you get a handful of mundane firelighters.
    • Fish masks. Despite being discontinued, due to being released long after other rares such as partyhats, it was expected that they would become as valuable as they were, and were thus hoarded in great numbers. Due to this, they are worth less than one million coins, even after almost two years after release. It's probably not helped by the fact that compared to party hats, they're incredibly ugly.
  • Mary Sue:
  • Memetic Badass: Thok.
  • Memetic Mutation: Pillars, after Mother Mallum's infamously anticlimactic death in Salt in the Wound.
    • Ascended Meme: In the Thok It to 'Em saga Thok threatens to kill a boss with a pillar. The boss scoffs at the absurdity of this notion.
    • This is not a dating site.
    • spin2win, also a reference to the meme from League of Legends.
    • The old Gnome Child chathead model, due to Gnome Children saying utterly bizarre things combined with a completely blank, slightly derpy-looking expression.
    • "Gainz", referring to Level Grinding as the absolute way of life, either seriously, mockingly, or as Self-Deprecation.
    • Connection Lost. Please wait - Attempting to Reestablish.
    • Due to the rather aged and ragged look of their graphical update and their association with crystals, the elves in Runescape are sometimes referred to as drug addicts, particularly crystal meth. The fact that the Cywir clan on Tarddiad in The Light Within quest literally cannot live without crystals does not help this image one bit.
  • Most Annoying Sound:
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Lucien murdering half-a-dozen of Gielinor's greatest heroes (which were close friends of the player character) and severely injuring two more of them.
    • Wizard Ellaron trying to use Ariane as the conduit for the destruction of the Wizards' Tower. He even gets mocked by the wizards he is supposedly avenging before their spirits transport him to the Abyss to experience the conflagration himself.
    • Amascut crosses the line when she massacres the desert monkeys and curses their goddess to lose three of her senses.
    • Sigmund's repeated attempts to commit genocide against the entire goblin race.
    • Sliske may have used the heroic Barrows Brothers for his own personal gain, but he crosses it big time in The World Wakes by killing Guthix.
    • Bandos crosses it in his backstory when he murders his sleeping deity to become a god despite knowing it would wipe all life on his home world.
    • Lord Iorwerth and King Lathas crossed the line we they tried to slaughter the entire population of West Ardougne to fuel the ritual to restore the Dark Lord.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • The "level up" fireworks, and the fanfare that plays when you advance a Combat Level.
    • The fanfare that plays whenever you reach a total level milestone.
    • The trickle of coins when your Ring of Wealth affects a drop. Interestingly enough, this can also become a Most Annoying Sound while fighting Cave Horrors, since it plays after every single kill, regardless of the drop's value.
    • The sound of a fire spell hitting alternates between this and Hell Is That Noise, depending on who the caster is. Doubly so for ice spells... unless you are on the receiving end. Sadly, the iconic ringing sound is no more, though.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome:
    • After Ritual of the Mahjarrat, some NPCs will talk about how they were at the battle, just at another part of the plateau. Kuradal takes the cake, having slain a few hundred Glacors (very powerful ice elemental bosses who summon minions) after chasing one of the Mahjarrat's minions into a cave.
    • Player Owned Ports pretty much define this trope. The premise is that you, the portmaster, send ships to the Eastern Lands to trade. You don't interact with the Wushanko Isles themselves, you just send a crew there to spy on Purist thugs or fight fire breathing turtles. There are also some NPCs who can do special voyages, some of which involve backstory on the Isles. It culminates in the Whaler (using his talk to sea creatures ability to get Shuma the whale to fight with him), the Occultist ( who is immortal thanks to her time as the Dragon ), and the Assassin attacking Quin, who may or may not have an Elder Artefact that she uses to command an army of monsters, and winning. That sounds, if possible, better than the Ritual of the Mahjarrat fight, and it all took place off screen.
  • Paranoia Fuel: While on the Desert Treasure quest, you'd better bank those Diamonds of Azzanadra until the final part of the quest. If you don't, you may get randomly attacked by a stranger with a poisoned dragon dagger. He CAN and WILL use the special. And yes, this can happen in your house.
  • Player Punch:
    • Players who have become fond of Hazelmere the ancient gnome mage, Cyrisus the fighter, Ghommal the giant door man, Sloane the Strength master, and the Slayer Masters Duradel and Turael may feel like they've been punched in the gut when all of those people die confronting Lucien during While Guthix Sleeps.
      • Again in the quest's sequel, Ritual of the Mahjarrat, where Jhallan, Idria and Akrisae are killed by Lucien, the Dragonkin, and Sliske, respectively. Sir Tiffy and Thaerisk also die during a nightmarish vision, in which all the aforemntioned characters make an appearance just to die again, but the former two get better.
    • Likewise, people who became fond of Princess Astrid and Prince Brand may feel like crying after they die fighting the Dagganoth Kings in the Blood Runs Deep Quest. It doesn't help that you married one of them a few moments before!
    • The deaths of Thaerisk Cemphier, Fiara, Cres and Guthix in The World Wakes.
  • Play the Game, Skip the Story: It's common to find players with this attitude, clicking rapidly through all the dialogue in quests and consulting a fansite Walkthrough instead so they can get the rewards as quickly as possible without bothering with the storyline.
  • The Scrappy:
    • The Sawmill Operator, for the exorbitant prices he charges.
    • Zachary Bragg of the Temple Trekking series. For one thing, he's the escortee in an Escort Mission, and his accuracy is laughable. It takes fifty levels (compared to the usual twenty) for him to learn an attack that regularly hits, meaning he's a chore to train. He's a Miles Gloriosus, despite being a nerfed version of his counterpart, Pazuzu. The best part? In order to get one of the best shortcuts in the game, you have to get him to level 99. Even the Runescape Wiki makes fun of him. This was probably intentional, though, given that he's an Expy of Zapp Brannigan.
    • Random event NPC's were widely hated before an update that made events less frequent and more rewarding. They're still not exactly fan favorites. The lone exception is probably the Evil Chicken.
    • Yelps, the former host of the daily Squeal of Fortune game. Plenty of players hate the minigame because he is essentially the poster image of Jagex beginning to add features that result in higher profit and that the wheel has a habit of rarely rolling on something good, usually giving players trash items on a regular basis. It does explain why (and makes it that much more satisfying when) the goblin looks like he is bruised and beaten when the character does happen to get a rare or super rare item. The wheel eventually got some of the rewards adjusted, but people still have a disliking to the goblin mainly out of the former.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • Emote clue scrolls require you to perform an emote with certain items equipped. Obtaining said items is annoying to begin with, but some of them, like metal boots and snakeskin armor, are especially irritating due to not being sold by NPC's and rarely being sold on the Grand Exchange, which means you'll also probably use up a bank spot to hang onto them for the next time you get that clue.
    • Coordinate clues require you to use a very clunky navigation interface to find a spot to dig. What's worse, some of them send you to dangerous places like the Wilderness where stopping to use said interface would be problematic. Many players regard these as de facto Guide Dang It moments.
    • The inability to play music of your choice in Daemonheim. Don't like the ambient soundtrack or the battle songs? Too bad, whatever you put on will get cut off in a few seconds and replaced with the Daemonheim music.
    • The Livid Farm. If you want to unlock all the Lunar spells, you have to play over forty hours of an incredibly repetitive and dull minigame that takes tons of runes and has lousy XP rewards. To make matters worse, a lot of the spells are virtually useless. Teleport to South Falador? Okay...or I could warp to the Port Sarim lodestone and run for three seconds.
    • The Treasure Hunter minigame and its predecessor, the Squeal of Fortune. Both are widely reviled by the player base for essentially allowing players to spend unlimited amounts of real-life money to buy "keys" or "spins" which usually give in-game rewards including (but not limited to) immediate experience boosts, bonus experience rewarded while training, sacks full of thousands or even millions of coins, experience-boosting equipment, "lucky" versions of powerful high-level gear, unique cosmetic equipment or useful in-game goods and items. Rarely does a week go by without Jagex running and advertising a new promotion to entice players to spend money on Keys, and they resolutely ignore or dismiss any negative sentiment that players express about it.
    • Solomon's General Store is a milder example — while many players do resent it for being emblematic of Jagex's ever-increasing emphasis on microtransactions (including NPCs whose only function in-game is to constantly advertise for it), it isn't generally as loathed as Treasure Hunter or the Squeal of Fortune, since almost all of the merchandise in the Store is cosmetic in nature.
    • The new death system as of June 2015. Gravestone timers were reduced from a maximum of an hour to three minutes. That's five percent of the original length. Items that used to increase grave timers now increase it by seconds at a time. However, you can still pay to get your items back; this is an attempt by Jagex to get money out of the game, but players argue it doesn't work, because the players with the most money are the ones least likely to die because they are generally higher-leveled and have access to better equipment.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: Where would the MMORPG be without games like this and EverQuest? This isn't counting the fact that it started off as a MuD.
  • Ship Tease: Quite a lot between the Player Character and Badass Adorable Cave Goblin chick Zanik. Crosses over into Interspecies Romance, and, if the player is female, Les Yay. One of the letters pages reveals that Zanik does indeed have feelings for the player, but wants to go off on her own so she won't be stuck in your shadow.
  • So Okay, It's Average: Several of the quests made earlier in Runescape's history get this reaction, especially Free-To-Play quests. Nobody can say with a straight face that they remember anything about the Clock Tower quest, other than the fact that it would be made much better if Scissorman made an appearance.
  • Take That, Scrappy!:
    • With the retirement and replacement of Yelps and the Squeal of Fortune, Jagex issued a player poll to decide the goblin's fate. Some of the options included peaceful retirement, completely removing him from the game, and using him as a target for sharp thrown objects in a minigame. The winning option, however, was one in which players get to kill Yelps in a messy way in a future quest, which turned out to be "The Mighty Fall".
    • After his removal as a random event, the Drunken Dwarf showed up in several quests, usually annoying an NPC and getting maimed for it.
    • Pauline is the NPC in charge of Livid Farm, a tedious minigame that requires an extensive amount of time to unlock anything in. During the Dimension of Disaster quest, her Alternate Self is one of Zemourgal's living prisoners. You have the option to give sarcastic versions of the encouragement you give her in the minigame, her examine text says it would be harder to break her free than it would be to complete Livid Farm, and there is an NPC throwing tomatoes at her, saying "This is for Livid Farm!".
  • Tear Jerker: The Vengeance! saga is a surprisingly poignant Perspective Flip from the view of a female Forgotten Warrior in Daemonheim. The saga begins with you in control of a normal adventuring party comprised of a few player stereotypes (one who's obsessed with killing, a role-player, a rule breaker, and their sane team leader), after entering a room and seemingly killing everyone within it, you then take control of one of the victims who's Not Quite Dead. She awakes, poisoned, and surrounded by her dead comrades and her dead little brother (Taevas). She continues to wander through the dungeon, the poison slowly killing her, as she runs into more dead friends (each with their own examine info as she fondly remembered them), confronts and kills the members of the adventuring party that attacked them, and struggles with her own madness as her thirst for revenge begins to warp her mind, turning her into one of the very killers that she hunts...
  • That One Achievement:
    • The Dungeoneering achievement "Up to the Gods" requires you to sacrifice Frost Dragon bones on an altar in a solo dungeon. Frost dragons only show up on the first set of floors, and even then are incredibly rare. There are players that have gone through over seventy floors and not seen a frost dragon.
    • To a lesser extent, there's also "And I Want It Now!" and "Kinprovements". "And I Want It Now!" requires you to complete a solo dungeon in under 6 minutes, which depends very heavily on the RNG being nice and putting the boss close to the starting room, as well as depending on you actually finding the boss room in time. "Kinprovements" requires you to wear a ring of kinship with a fully upgraded role, which takes a humongous amount of Dungeoneering tokens to fully upgrade.
  • That One Attack:
    • If you have a slow internet connection, any attack that requires you to dodge projectiles can turn into this. Particularly nasty examples include the Luminescent Icefiend's icicle rain and the Spirit Beast's magical attacks.
    • In its heyday, Ice Barrage was this to players who played Castle Wars and other PvP minigames. A lot of ancient users were usually trash talked by those on the receiving end of such attacks.
  • That One Boss:
    • Nomad. The custodian of a minigame as a fight, shouldn't be hard, right? Well, he's been gathering the souls of everyone who's died there for a year, and has harnessed their power for himself. He will freeze you, hit you to the literal maximum your body can withstand without disintegrating, summon land mines in a circle around you, and call up clones that fight at 100% power. What's that, you think you're going to win? He heals himself once you get him to a quarter of his health, and if you do it again he'll knock off the nonsense and just smack you around faster than you can blink. Your reward is a solid red or blue cape. Enjoy.
    • Another Dungeoneering boss, Shadow-forger Ihlakhizan. It can kill a player with maximum HP with a single attack by splashing acid on them, since the puddles spread out and the damage from each puddle stacks if multiple ones land where you are standing. His special attack alone will reduce your combat stats by a ton if it connects, as well as most likely killing you instantly. The only way to dodge this is to hide behind the pillars he hangs from, but if you stay there too long, the shadows will literally tear you apart. You only get a few seconds to get behind the pillars as well, so if you walk into the boss room just as he uses his special, you can expect to have to walk back all over again. Did I mention none of these attacks can be blocked by Prayer? And Saradomin help you if you forget to turn off Auto Retaliate.
    • Vanstrom Klause isn't quite Nomad-caliber, but he's still damn frustrating. He can hit through prayer and has a bevy of special attacks. One particularly infuriating one is his darkness attack, which can only be dodged by angling the camera away from him. The game doesn't explain that very well. His other specials are no slouches either, capable of summoning flunkies to heal him, teleport you right into his attacks, or just cover the room in magical projectiles.
    • If there is any quest-based boss than can trump Nomad in difficulty, it's TokHaar-Hok from Brink of Extinction, which is also That One Quest to a majority of players. Battling him involves him summoning Elite Mooks that were giving hell in the previous battles, avoiding heating conduits, and locking Hok into a stun for the later half of the battle to prevent healing. Unfortunately, Hok can maim you for upwards of 6,000+ damage if not having prayer on (which is capable of draining), his mooks are far from slouches that can rip you to pieces, and the conduits are not something you want to stand on when heated up. An unlucky combination of either are known to kill players in seconds.
    • Chaos Hreidmar and Chaos Grimsson from Birthright of the Dwarves, who must both be fought at the same time. Chaos Grimsson is a powerful melee fighter who frequently uses an absurdly powerful charge attack with a very generous hitbox. Chaos Hreidmar, meanwhile, is a mage who summons chaos dwarves (powerful melee fighters) and chaos dwarf hand cannoneers (horrendous Demonic Spiders), and can heal 12,000 hitpoints if you can't damage him enough to stop him. Thankfully, you can exploit a staircase in the arena to render Hreidmar non-aggressive, and if you kill one and then die, the game will save your progress. This battle has the dubious honor of being the only boss fight in the game ever to be nerfed for being too hard; originally, you had to defeat them both in one go, so for instance if you killed Grimsson but died to Hreidmar, Grimsson would respawn upon your death and you would have to start over from the beginning.
    • The Nihils from Fate of the Gods, a rather nasty Wolfpack Boss. There's four of them, and you have to kill all four. You can't leave until they're all dead, and if you die, any of the nihils you killed come back. To make matters worse, aggroing all four of them at once and then killing them is a completionist requirement.
      • Immediately after that, you have the fight with Mah's nightmares. Hordes of tough, hard-hitting muspah using all three forms of combat, while Mah herself screams and convulses in pain, damaging you (and the muspah too, thankfully). Zaros will offer to grant you infinite runes for Ancient Magicks and prayer points for curses, and taking advantage of his offer will make the fight much more manageable. If you don't...well...
    • The fight with General Graardor at the climax of The Mighty Fall, when he picks up a weapon. You're required to fight with a kyzaj, which is a two-handed weapon and fairly slow to boot. You also can't use prayers. Graardor's regular attacks are fairly manageable, but he has several nasty tricks up his sleeves. For starters, he frequently makes sweeping attacks with his kyzaj, which will do 40% of your max HP if you can't dodge them, and he also regularly creates huge undodgeable shockwaves. The kicker is that you get next to no time to dodge the sweeps; if you have the slightest hiccup in your internet, or if you heal at a bad time, then you'll get a kyzaj to the face. Also, he has a mountain of HP, and as you whittle him down, he smashes off the edges of the platform.
  • That One Level:
    • The snake event in Temple Trekking / Burgh de Rott Ramble is generally accepted as the hardest challenge to take a hard-tier character through; without a certain amount of luck, the snakes will aggro your character and kill him or her before you can kill off the snakes. Oh, and good luck trying to attack all of the snakes before they focus on your escort; they're a pain to click on.
    • The gnome tunnel under Ape Atoll, if you attempt Monkey Madness at a low level. Hundreds of aggressive, powerful skeleton gorillas and zombie monkeys, poisonous floor traps, and constant damage from falling rocks, all on the epitome of a Space-Filling Path.
  • That One Puzzle:
    • The sliding puzzle in Elemental Workshop 3. Tricky to figure out, your view is obscured by an odd angle (plus a pillar), and have a limited number of moves.
    • The Temple of Light in Mourning's End Part 2 due to the high-level agility it requires. The shadows hit rather hard if not having prayer on and that said agility level? You were likely to fail the obstacles... a lot.
    • One Cracked article lists the accordion puzzle from Rocking Out as #1 on its list due to extremely vague details and the general absurdity of the solution. You would have to be capable of thinking outside the box on a grand scale to consider figuring out using a mixture of an accordion, a seagull, and paper instead of doing something mundane.
    • Recruitment Drive is a quest that is literally and intentionally made of frustrating puzzles— it's the entry exam for the Temple Knights, who by profession need intelligence and creativity as well as strength.
  • That One Sidequest: Several of the game's quests can be fairly aggravating, but the unmarked miniquests are often worse.
    • Mahjarrat Memories, the followup to a very short and simple miniquest. Kharshai asks you to find lost memories of his fellow Mahjarrat, and gives you a device to do so. The device has to be charged, and doing so requires 500 divine memories of vibrant or better quality. Not divine energy, note, but divine memories. It takes about half an hour to gather enough divine memories to give the device one charge, and you have to charge it sixteen times to get the full rewards. So you pump up your device...now where do you get said memories? Thankfully, most of them are located in spots related to the Mahjarrat and thus easy enough to find if you remember the lore associated with them...with a few exceptions. Zemouregal's memory is the worst of the bunch, located deep in a dangerous quest dungeon that you've probably forgotten about by the time you're attempting this sidequest, but some of the others are tricky to find as well.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • The 12-10-07 updates.
    • Then there was PvP Worlds that appeared from late 2008 up until the 12-10-07 update was reversed on the account the drops ended up inflating the economy to ridiculous proportions.
    • The introduction of microtransactions and particularly the associated changes to the rules and terms of use were poorly received.
    • Every update gets this reaction from at least one section of the Broken Base. Some being reasonable, others not so much.
    • The early reaction by most of the Broken Base to the Evolution of Combat Beta.
    • Naturally, the Runescape 3 update is subject to this. Probably the biggest controversy is the new interface system, which despite allowing for more flexibility in how players view their interface while playing, is also not quite intuitive enough to edit, and the default layout is different from what people were used to.
    • An especially notable example is the graphical update of skillcapes. The moment they were implemented the players went berserk, criticizing the textures, the new icons, and the different coloration. Players who played with graphics at low settings were especially angry as the low detail capes resembled "bland sheets." The outcry was so violent and incredible that Jagex had to rework the new capes again and provide a toggle so people could switch to the old capes; those updates quieted many of the haters. The kicker, however, is that the original update was polled in-game weeks prior; the poll showed images of what the new capes would look like and linked to the official forum discussion of the rework, and as many as seventy percent of the voters chose the new look.
  • They Just Didn't Care: This has been, by and large, the reaction to the third World Event. Climbing on the back of a giant boar goddess and stabbing her in the face with spears charged by the life force of the universe in order to prevent an apocalypse sounds awesome, right? As it turned out, the event was largely scaled back from its original intent, consisted of a series of repetitive actions that weren't worth doing more than once a day, and ended with a single faction- the aforementioned Godless- sweeping the whole thing. On top of it all, the ending cutscene of the event showed Tuska doing severe damage to Falador, Edgeville, and the Wizard's Tower- and after the fact, none of them are affected at all, and almost nobody- during or after the event- actually acknowledges it happened. And on top of all of that, Tuska is laughably small compared to the rest of Gilenor. She was billed as the World Eater, but with her size, she's more likely a continent nibbler.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: The general consensus on the hero-god V is that he wasn't properly established before his demise. His existence as a historical figure was mentioned briefly in one or two quests, but the quest that establishes his character and nature and sees him return to Gielinor is the same that sees him killed almost unceremoniously by the Dragonkin.
  • Ugly Cute: The snaggle-toothed bug-eyed Extreme Omnivore baby troll.
  • Uncanny Valley: Several of the newer character models look far too detailed to the point where they look wrong, to the point where some people prefer to play with the graphics on lower settings to make the models not look incredibly ugly and weird. This especially works well for Zanik's graphical update.
  • Villain Sue: Sliske the Majarrat is largely hated by the player base for murdering Guthix at the end of "The World Wakes", not to mention enslaving Akrisae as the seventh Barrows Brother and generally being a Karma Houdini for it all. Meanwhile, he is beloved by Jagex's developers, and in-game he is basically uncatchable and none of his shadowy plots (to date, anyways) can ever be foiled.
    • As of Fate of the Gods, however, he finally gets some form of comeuppance. Zaros excommunicates him, denying him any further divine aid.
  • Vindicated by History:
    • The 2007 Christmas Event. The community was in a ranting mood thanks to the recent Wilderness and Free Trade changes, the event itself was extremely short, and the reward wasn't wearable, so it was very swiftly harshly panned. However, it included a post-event activity that gained some popularity, and the snow globe that was rewarded could be used to quickly generate snowballs for several of the future events which other people had to get gradually. It is now considered by many to be one of the best holiday events ever.
    • The Pest Control change, which greatly lowered the possible experience gain for high level players (but increased it for low level players). It was one of the first seriously controversial updates of RuneScape 2, and triggered many riots. However, thanks to the addition of Void Knight Helmets, and other training areas being released, it has been considered an alright update.
  • The Woobie: The World Wakes gives us, of all people, Guthix. Not only he does he die, but his backstory shows he came from another world that was destroyed by an unknown war between gods. He knew all along his Edicts wouldn't be enough to save Gielinor from the same fate that befell his homeworld. He personally shows us all of this before lying on a bed in his desolate home (in the memories of his home world, that is).
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Mah. Sure, she spawns hordes of unspeakable terrors every time she has a nightmare, and could accidentally devastate any nearby settlements (should anybody be foolish enough to settle the plane of Freneskae) any time she gets angry. Sure, she looks like your last nightmare. But Seren's memory crystals reveal another side of Mah. Her fear of being alone. The constant pain she is in, and the fact that, if it is possible for an Elder God, she is slowly dying. Somebody give her a hug.