The Duel Arena is a rather iconic location in RuneScape’s history as a video game. It is a location where players can challenge others to a friendly or staked duel. However, it recent years, it has become a hub of gamblers and real-world traders rather than players who wish to experience true PvP content. Jagex has made the move to remove the Duel Arena and replace it with a new skilling location: Het’s Oasis.
Duel Arena removal
The problem with the Duel Arena is that PvP has been on a constant decline, with RuneScape 3 now focuses primarily on PvM content. Its 2007 counterpart, Old School RuneScape, is still quite popular as a PvP game, with its original combat system being a big part of its popularity.
How, in both games, the Duel Arena has become a hotspot not for friendly duels, but for staking. Staking is a practice in which players stake vast amount of wealth and exchange hits until there is a winner. This is vastly different from true PvP, as players often wield only a Polypore Staff or Drygore and exchange blows rather than actual combat.
In this sense, staking has become prominently used to gamble or participate in real-world trading, which is against RuneScape’s Terms of Service. Recently, Jagex has implemented a 50 million GP (gold piece) limit on staking as a temporary countermeasure.
Jagex has fully unveiled their plans on how they will remove the Duel Arena from the game: adding a new skilling location, called “Het’s Oasis,” which provides many rewards and also an experience that will be part of the ongoing ElderGodWarsstoryline.
Het’s Oasis lies under the Duel Arena and the god of the dead, Icthlarin, seeks an ancient relic underneath it in order to help the young gods defeat the Elder Gods. Het, the desert god of health, used this relic, which had the ability to temporarily restore willing souls to life. With it, Ichtlarin hopes to revive their deceases fighters in the losing fight against the Elder Gods.
Besides looking absolutely stunning, Het’s Oasis will feature 3 new skilling methods:
A new Agility Course, in which you’ll traverse the rubble of the ruined Duel Arena.
A new Hunter method, where you control a crocodile that swims around the oasis catching Scarabs.
A new Farming method, where you passively tend to flower bushes and harvest new types of flowers.
Additionally, two miniquests will be added as part of the ongoing narrative: Eye of Het I and Eye of Het II. The first one will be released the same day as the update, while the second part will be released a week later.
As for the rewards, a new skilling familiar for the Summoning skill will be added, using materials from hunting Scarabs in the oasis. This new familiar, the Holy Scarab, will slow down the drain rate of Prayer. Its special move will also generate a random bone in your inventory.
Prayer Powders are also created from the new Scarab Shells. These are consumables that grant 30-minute buffs to players, focused on defensive and healing prayers.
Powder of Defence: provides an additional +2 defence boost when using Thick Skin / Rock Skin / Steel Skin prayers.
Powder of Protection: boosts damage protection to 60% when using Protect From / Deflect From prayers.
Powder of Item Protection: protect one extra item when using the Protect Item prayer.
Powder of Pulverising: grinds all bones in your inventory when using the Ectofuntus.
Powder of Burials: boosts Prayer XP to 250% when burying bones.
Powder of Penance: restores Prayer points equal to 2.5% of damage received.
Honeycombs can be earned from the Farming section of the Oasis. These flowers can be used in the Player-Owned Farm beehives to make new Honeycombs, which can be fed to farm animals for new effects:
Fertile Honeycomb: boosts breeding chance.
Candied Honeycomb: a high chance that offspring will have the Joyful trait.
Nutritious Honeycomb: a high chance that the offspring will have the Immune trait.
Moreish Honeycomb: a high chance that the offspring will have multiple traits.
Shimmering Honeycomb: a high chance that the offspring will be Shiny.
Completing Eye of Het II will also award a new Archaeology Relic: Blessing of Het. This relic will increase the amount of healing from food and potions by 10%.
Limited Time Event
While Het’s Oasis is permanent content, there will be a limited time event, called “Oasis Restoration,” which focuses on cleaning up the oasis. The rewards for these include a new title, new cosmetics (including crocs that are designed after literal crocodiles), a new crocodile pet, and drop enhancers.
To earn drop enhancers, players can gather drop enhancer fragments by skilling from the oasis activities. Ten fragments are combined to make an inactive drop enhancer. While inactive, they can be traded.
Once activated, players will have a 10% increases chance of earning unique drops from bosses in Elder God Wars Dungeon. However, all drop enhancers will be removed at the end of the event, so be sure to make the most out of it when it launches on January 4th, 2022. More details can be found on the RuneScape news post.
Hopefully, with Jagex going forward with player requests to remove the Duel Arena, the amount of gambling and real world trading will take a decent hit.