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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Runescape: Back to the Barrows

... and over all, Death held dominion...
 After all the effort of getting Baby Jad, my next goal is still a bit amorphous.  I realized, even though I finished getting 99 Slayer, it's still fun, and a good way to make money.  Since it still holds interest, and there's no rush any more, I figured maybe go for 96 Herblore.  Then I can make Extremes and Overloads.  That would be good for Slayer, plus assorted oddball things like TzTok-Jad in the Fight Caves, and Tormented Demons.  Until the Overloads/Extremes came out, Monique has always been my go-to girl for Herblore.  She's always liked the skill, and now she's 99 Herblore.  If she could make my Overloads for me, I'd skip the skill.  But, being untradeable, that's not an option now.

After dumping 22 million gold into going from level 89 to 92, it seemed like a good idea to maybe MAKE some money...  so I started flipping like I used to.  Don't know if it was just a bad time/day, or what, but after 3 days of trying, it seemed obvious something wasn't working.  Yes, I made profit, but the margin was small to nonexistent, and reselling was nearly impossible.  Maybe I just picked the wrong items.  Regardless, I started looking for alternatives.

Among many fun options (Aviansies, Abyssals, Dragons) I realized I hadn't done Barrows in years.  It sounded fun, with a lot of potential.  Plus, since I last did Barrows, a lot of new equipment and techniques have come out.  Being me, I started Googling for guides.

You know, there are a lot of guides on the net that haven't been updated in years.  And of the newer ones, even they didn't always account for new options, like Drakkan's Medallion.  There were several with good, but incomplete, information.  Wiki had the best presentation.  They included a lot of recommendations for each way to fight, what to wear, and inventories.  They had suggestions on how to face each Barrows Brother, and pray protect from each.

What I really liked about Wiki was that they had a small labeled map of where the brothers lay buried, right next to a chart showing what they attacked with.  That was good as far as it went, but the chart could have included how we should attack as well.  Another point of difference- I disagree with the recommended order of doing the brothers.  It works, but I use more prayer, and have to sip a potion occasionally.  Since I'm 99 Prayer, that shouldn't be necessary.

So I modified the chart to suit me, added the newest guy's name (Akrisae) after the latest Mahjarrat quest, and re-ordered the sequence.  Now I've got a quick-list of the brothers, what to pray, and what style to attack with.  The new order starts with the hardest brothers, and works down to the easiest.  This allows me to use prayer on the harder ones, and not need it for the last ones.  Plus, their weaknesses, purely by chance and good luck, are grouped together so that I don't have to change attack style as often. Below is the order I like, and how I fight each brother:

My route makes use of Draken's Medallion, the Ardougne Cloak, and the Ectophial.  After finishing, I take the Ardougne Cloak to the monastery for a free prayer refill.  The Ectophial teleport brings me into home territory for Draken's Medallion, which makes all of it's teleports free.  (Kind of like local phone calls versus long distance.)
From the Treasure Chest...
Where I go with the Medallion depends on if I need a bank drop.  Burg de Rhott teleport if I need to bank, or directly to the Barrows if not.  Either way, it's fast, and completely negates the old disadvantage of having to travel so far for a bank run.  Now you can make as many trips as you want, hit the bank easily, and immediately be ready to 'drop in' on the brothers again.

To the Monastery with the Ardougne Cloak
Not going to include the puzzle solutions or a full guide.  I have nothing new or improved to say about those.  Check Wiki for a complete Barrows guide.  But my modifications seemed useful to me, and thought I'd offer them here in the hopes someone else might find them useful.

To Port Phasmatys with the Ectophial. Now it's a free teleport to the bank or the Barrows with Draken's Medallion.
My first 4 runs were just trying things out, tweaking the setup.  Nothing special, but that's okay.  I've been playing with different styles and setups, and slowly honing my approach to something that works for me.  First run-through was all-melee.  It worked, but took a lot longer because some brothers are pretty resistant to melee.  Tried with melee/ranged, no magic, still wasn't satisfied.  Added magic to the mix with Slayer Darts and a Slayer Staff.  My hits were kind of low with that, even wearing Ahrim's top and bottom.  Switched to Fire Blast and a Staff of Light, and that seemed decent.  Finally moved up to doing Fire Bursts.  Now I'm happy with the equipment, still playing with my supplies.  Don't really need as much as I bring, so I may reduce the load a bit. 

After getting some experience, a typical run now takes about 10 to 12 minutes.  Below is my current setup:

Helm of Neitznot
Fire Cape
Broad-Tipped Bolts (5,000 or more)
Staff of Light
Mage's Book
Ahrim's Robe Top and Bottom
Barrows Gloves
Dragon Boots
Ring of Wealth

Ardougne Cloak
Drakan's Medallion
Enhanced Excalibur
Lots of Fire Runes
Armadyl legs and plate
Rune Crossbow
Vine Whip
Dragonfire Shield
Dragon Plate Body and Legs
3 prayer(4) Pots
3 Rocktail
Lots of Airs (over 10,000)
Lots of Blood Runes (over 3,000)
Lots of Deaths (over 3,000)
When I say "lots of runes", it's because I didn't bother to figure out exact numbers, I just grabbed a few thousand for good measure.  The spell is for Fire Wave, from the normal spellbook.

This setup allows me to make quite a few trips.  I usually bank because of space issues, and top my supplies up while at the bank.  Just for the fun of it, I bring my pet TzRek-Jad with me.  After working so hard to earn him, I enjoy having Jad tag along as often as possible.

For a full guide, read the Wiki.  But just for a quick look at how I Barrow, this is it.  I've only been at it Friday evening, and several hours on Saturday, and I've made about 15 million in drops.  When I was flipping, I usually made 3 million gold a day.  For me, Barrows is much better profit, and lots more fun.  As a matter of fact, I'm headed back right now.  If you see someone there with a Baby Jad... that's me!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Runescape Menagerie: Pets in the House

 My last post was all about baby TzRek-Jad, and the culmination of my efforts to get him.  Mainly self-indulgent fluff, but I was pretty happy about it, so it got blogged.  :^)

Having Baby Jad, I started thinking how fun it would be to have one in my player-owned house menagerie, and one in my bank to follow me around.  Not sure if I want to get another 100 Zeal, but it's a possibility.

Thinking about pets, player owned houses, and menagerie started me wondering about the pets people choose to keep.  The menagerie is useful in allowing a summoning obelisk, so as I'm porting in from my last Slayer assignment, I can charge up Summoning points, pray at the altar, and repair any Barrows armor before continuing on.  It also has a pseudo-useful function in the pet feeder.  If you've got a pet with you, a quick click on the feeder will feed him.  That's convenient if you like to keep a pet with you in your travels.  But it's not a necessity.

A third function is to save some bank space by storing your pets in the menagerie.  Still and all, it's more of a luxury item, given to us as a way to personalize our house, and have more fun.  And in all truth, I love mine.  I really like the Baby Dragons, so I've mostly filled up the menagerie with them.  Since you can only have 1 baby dragon at a time in your bank or personal possession, the menagerie is a great way to stock up on multiples of those otherwise one-of-a-kind pets.

As an example, my favorite baby dragon is the black one.  Black dragons are the king of the chromatic dragons, and the egg drop (to me at least) seems rarer, harder to get.  So that's the one I wanted most of, followed by Red, Blue, and Green.  Originally I had 5 baby black dragons, and one each of the Red, Blue, and Green in the menagerie.  Then I forgot to bank my personal baby black while penguin-hunting in the wilderness.  Got killed, lost him, and was pretty mad.  

Since I already had some spare blue dragon eggs in my bank, I hatched and raised a blue baby, then swapped him for a black so I'd have a cool pet following me.  When I got another black dragon egg, I put the old one back in the menagerie, hatched the black, and had him halfway raised when I got Jad.
 Since Jad's a far cooler pet, I finished raising the baby black, and put him in my house.  So now there's 6 black, 1 red, 2 blue, and 1 green baby dragons.  Plus a small assortment of other pets I liked.  Eek the spider, a raven, couple of monkeys, and an iguana.  Eventually, there'll be a Jad in the house.  Maybe more than one...

All that to say, I very much enjoyed building my family of pets.  And I get a lot of pleasure every time I go in my house and see them roaming around.  It may not be extremely functional, but with all the pets, my house is a lot more fun for me.

Not really going anywhere with all that, just thinking about function versus luxury, and how important it can be.  Do you have a menagerie in your house?  How much thought have you put into it?  Do you still enjoy it?

Just wondering.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Runescape: TzRek Jad (or "How to Raise Your Own Baby Jad")

A Boy and his Jad
     Okay, I'm going to have a 'me' moment today.  I've been working and obsessing like a mad fool to get TzRek-Jad, the baby version of TzTok-Jad.  Since the day they announced it, I've been working to get Baby Jad.  My first blog post about him was August the 3rd, he was released August 23rd, and today is September 17th.  So roughly a month and a half. 

     The requirements are steep.  99 Summoning.  99 Slayer.  A Fire Cape.  100 Zeal from Soul Wars.
      You buy him as a reward from the Soul Wars minigame.  When you pay up, it takes your Firecape, and tells you Baby Jad ate the Fire Cape!
      Lucky for me, the requirements weren't too far away.  Already had 99 Summoning and a Fire Cape.  My Slayer skill was 93.  Doing Nomad's Requiem gave me a bonus of 70 Zeal, which I never used.  So, 7 Slayer levels, 30 Zeal, and it's a done deal.  Sounded easy.  Until you start grinding away for a 99.  At least Slayer is a fun skill.  I did everything I could to speed it up.  Cannon, Steel Titan, potions…  and it still took a long time.

     Ancient Effigies really helped.  I had no idea how many get dropped when you power slay.  They're rare drops, but if all you're doing is killing things as fast as possible, and not stopping to pick things up (except effigies, dark bows, whips, and so on) then they show up reasonably often.  To be specific, on a good trip, I'd get 2 effigies.  One single day I had 3 assignments that netted 2 effigies each trip!  That was six right there!  A normal day would usually give me 2 or 3 effigies at a rate of one every other task or so. 
By the time it was finished, those effigies added up to over 800k of exp.  I had planned on selling my Slayer Points too, but never bothered.  Even after getting 99 Slayer, I cashed in 2 more effigies, and have 4 left in the bank. 

     Jad and I have a history, which I've already detailed previously.  For now, lets just say that I used to be able to beat him using Ancient Curses / Deflects.  Then Jagex changed the rules, and that doesn't work any more.  I'm still trying to learn how to beat him again.  So during my Slayer training, when Kuradal offered a Tzhaar task, and an upgrade to Jad, I always took it.  Since it was a chance to practice for Jad, and still make some exp, it was win-win, even if I got killed.

     Still working on Jad.  Might actually focus on it, now that I've finished this goal.  But with all of the history, I felt a strong connection when Runescape released Baby Jad.  Besides, I've already got a houseful of Baby Dragons, which used to be the coolest pet in Runescape until TzRek-Jad.  I love the cool pets.  I got so carried away with the baby dragons, that I collected 1 green, 1 red, 2 blue, and 5 Blacks, all in the menagerie.  I'd love to have at least one Jad in the house menagerie, maybe more.  I've got a spare Fire Cape, but getting all that Zeal is very off-putting.
 To the side is a quick shot of my menagerie.  The pets tend to wander around and spread out very quickly, so it's hard to get a good shot of all of them.
      Of course, a side benefit is the 99 Slayer.  I wasn't even planning to go for that yet, but it worked out well.  One of the first things I did after getting Baby Jad was to get the Slayer Cape.  It's a highly respected cape, and looks pretty cool.  The cape emote is pretty lame though.  Big bad Slayer gets attacked by this spindly little 3-legged monster, throws monster to ground, stomps monster flat.  I feel kind of bad for the monster.  It may not be practical, but for an impressive Slayer emote, the monster should be bigger than the player character. 

     I love the fact the Baby Jad is maintenance free.  No feeding, and he never runs away.  That's very nice.  I'm immensely curious whether he stays on death or not.  But not enough to get killed just to see.  You do it.  Not me.  He was too hard to get, for taking chances like that.  I'm also pleased that TzRek-Jad can go into your Player Owned House Menagerie.  He fit right in with my dragons.  Since I've only got 1 baby red dragon,  his Jad's red color provides a nice counter-balance to the baby black dragons.  But now I'm in a quandary.  I really hated doing Soul Wars.  Was very lucky to already have most of the Zeal points from a quest.  But if I want to put him in my menagerie, I'm going to have to play Soul Wars again.  A lot.  I've still got 2 more Fire Capes.  If I keep one, and cash in the other, I can have a Jad in the house, and one to follow me around Runescape.  But that's for the far future.  For now, I'm on Soul Wars retirement. 
Sit boy... Good boy!
     I'm thrilled to finally have him.  I wonder how many are out there?  I've only ever seen one before mine.  And yes, I know he's functionally useless.  No help fighting or carrying.  Doesn't boost any skills.  But he's just plain cool.  Plus, as Monique pointed out, having Jad is like bragging rights.  If he's following me, people automatically know I've got those 2 99's and have beaten Big Jad in the fight cave.  If I wear any other skillcape at the same time, that's bragging even more.  If I do the Taskmaster Emote at the same time, that's just too much showing off … hmmm, maybe I could do it just a couple of times?

Okay, so I'm proud of him.  But even more, I'm happy to have him, because I've wanted, and worked hard, to own my very own TzRek-Jad.  Not sure what I'll work on next.  But I know it's going to be fun!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Runescape Bunus Exp Weekend Over and Gone

So, the Runescape Bonus Experience weekend is over now.  How'd you do?

My 1 level raised over the Bonus Exp Weekend...

Let's start off by saying Monique smoked me.  She left skid marks on the road, and me standing in a cloud of dust.  Early Friday morning, I was aware she had just gotten 97 in Herblore.  A short while later, she sent me an email.  All it said was "98".  By the time I got home she was nearing 99, and had her skill cape in no time flat.  I asked how she was screaming through it so fast, she said she was making overloads from scratch.  Sounds expensive, but she'll use them on Slayer and make it back.
In the meantime, she moved over to Crafting, and gained a few levels in that.  Then she jumped to Fletching, which is where she spent the rest of the weekend.  Her goal was to get at least 93 Fletching, in order to be able to do all levels of Effigies for Fletching/Woodcutting.  Neither of us has that at the moment.  Or, we didn't.
We'll get back to the effigies in a moment...

In the meantime, I started bonus exp weekend having just barely begun Slayer level 97.  I use Super Sets (Strength and Attack), Turmoil, Soul Split, Cannonballs, whatever I can to speed it up.  I don't pick up any drops unless they're especially good... like Effigies.  No extremes, though.  My herblore's only 89, which limits which ones I can make... and I don't want to take the time from Slayer to make them.  When it makes sense, I use Dragon Claws special, or Vine Whip special, Korasi's special, or the Enhanced Excalibur.

Steel Titan, Cannon, Potions, every advantage possible

I skip slow tasks, even if I like them.  Right now, all I want is speed.  So, during the weekend I got a grand total of over 6 million exp.  I wish it all went to Slayer, but of course most of it was just plain old combat.  Of that number, 1,200,000 or so went to Slayer.

While working on the skill, I got a ton of Effigy drops.  I quit counting after a dozen, and just cashed in the ones I could, left the rest in the bank for the moment.

Now's probably a good time to talk about Effigies.  I don't know which monsters drop them, or what the drop rate is, but it seems to be rare, or very uncommon.  They have 4 stages, each of which requires a correspondingly higher skill level in different skills to unlock.  Each level you unlock (or someone assists you to unlock) gives experience points to that skill.  (Either to you, or the person assisting if you needed help.)  The final stage reveals a Dragonkin Lamp, which is used for experience in any skill you want.  The amount given depends on the level of the skill chosen.

Ancient Effigy

That's the short form.  For a full explanation, Wiki has a great webpage.  In my case, it's all going to Slayer, and at level 98... and yes, that's the only level I gained this weekend...  I'm getting about 46k exp per Dragonkin Lamp.

So currently, I've got something like 14 Effigies that I'll need boosts or assists to unlock.  Once I unlock all the lamps, that will give me about 600,000 exp.  I also have enough Slayer points to buy about 85k exp as well.
Monique assisting me with Ancient Effigy

To top it all off, tomorrow is Tuesday, and Monique and I will be doing penguins.  They'll give me close to 40k.  Which means, at my current Slayer experience, I only need about 300k more experience to get 99.   (Quick update here:  we finished Ritual of the Mahjarrat, and used all 80k exp lamps on Slayer.  I just need to finish cashing in my effigies to level 99!)

That's a lot of work, but without the Effigies, it would be tons more!  I think I can get it by next weekend (I hope!)

Then I start playing Soul Wars, earning Zeal points.  With 100 Zeal, TzRek-Jad will be mine (insert evil laughter here).  I can't wait!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Runescape Bonus Exp Weekend

Splash Image from Runescape.com during Bonus Exp Weekend
 Today starts the first day of the Runescape Bonus Experience Weekend.  To the best of my recollection, it's the third one ever.  Monique and I missed the first one.  Just had too much happening to play that weekend.  The second one we did really well.  That's pretty much where I got 99 Construction.  
This one, we have a couple of non-game things going on, but should be able to devote most of the weekend to it.  I'm really hyped about it.  With the advent of the new Baby Jad, I've been pushing to 99 my Slayer as fast as possible, and just got to 97 a couple of days ago.  So this is absolutely perfect timing to get that last push in.  Don't know how far it can take me, but I'm going to be Slaying my brains out this weekend... :^)

It's only 2 levels to go, but more than 2 million exp points!
I seriously doubt I can get (roughly) 2 million Slayer exp in a single weekend, even if it IS Bonus Exp Weekend.  But still, that's going to save a tremendous amount of time.  Money too, since I always use an inventory full of Prayer pots, a couple of Super Sets, and a Cannon as often as possible.  Anything I can think of to speed it up.  I can't make Overloads, and don't really want to take the time at this stage to make a bunch of Extreme Potions.  After all, the goal is to get the last 2 levels of Slayer, not to level up Herblore.  Not the timing I would have chosen, but when they came out with Baby Jad, it through my general plans out the window.  I want him NOW!

A little obssessed, you say?  True enough.  I think most real Runescapers are, at least to some extent.  But I have a special history with Jad.  Through all the years he's been in existence, we've been happy to live and let live.  I don't kill him, he doesn't kill me.  We both liked it that way.  Then one day Jagex came out with the Task system, and over time it evolved into a goal of mine to get the Taskmaster Emote.

The bad news:  One of the Tasks requires killing Jad.  Was I committed enough?  Yep.  I'm horrible at Jad's kind of real-time combat.  Anything requiring fast reflexes and hyper-concentration.  So beating him was not just a matter of a couple of days effort.  There was research, study, practice... I had to find the simplest method possible so I could handle the prayer switching.  

The result was 2 months of banging my head against the fight cave wall.  Total frustration.  At some point, I found mention of the Ancient Curses technique.  After a lot of effort, it worked for me and I wound up with 3 Fire Capes.  

By the time it was over, Jad was in my subconscious.  Couldn't quit thinking about him.  He showed up in my dreams.  I kept hearing his sound effects in my head.  To get him out of my system, I wrote about him.  Wrote for nearly a week, and when it was done, it had turned into a pretty good guide on beating Jad with Ancient Curses.  Hadn't meant it to turn out that way, but since it turned out so well, I cleaned it up and published it online as a guide.
Random Slayer Scene #1: Ice Strykewyrms

It worked.  I pretty much went my own way, and left Jad alone down in the depths of his Fight Caves.  Until...
Jagex decided the (non-combat) method of killing Jad with Ancient Curses was a 'glitch', and removed it.  They also 'fixed' the 'Vengeance' method, which was nearly as easy.  All gone.  No more.  So they just destroyed the only way I can beat him, not to mentioned all that time and work making the guide.

Well, that guide is a work of heart for me.  I'm not pulling it off the web, I just included an update that the part of it relating to Ancient Prayers no longer works.  Most of the guide is still very useful.  But the real meat of it is gone.  When I get the assignment from Kuradel, I attempt Jad again.  But she's only offered him twice so far, and I've gotten killed both times.  Still working on him.
Random Slayer Scene #2: Calling down the thunder on Steel Dragons

Okay, by now this just sounds like whining.  But it's setting the stage for the flip side.  Just as the Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away, Jagex took something from me, but offered something in return.

Baby Jad.  TzRek-Jad.

After all that history, I HAD to get baby Jad.  Already had 99 Summoning.  93 Slayer.  No Zeal Points.  Time to get busy.  By now, I've gotten 97 Slayer.  This bonus exp weekend will get me much farther ahead.  Maybe a whole level.  

When they announced the weekend, I KNEW how I'd be spending it.  How about you?
Final Random Slayer Scene: A Guy and His Titan... taking down the Black Demons

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Runescape: The Branches of Darkmeyer Review

Warning: Some Spoilers- Proceed at your own risk!
Branches of Darkmeyer came out this week.  Monique and I did the quest last night, and I had a lot of mixed feelings about it.  Story-wise, it was enjoyable, with plenty of intrigue, betrayal, action and adventure.  As expected for a theme involving vampires.  It's the newest chapter of an ongoing storyline, and leaves you with an appropriate foreshadowing of more to come.  I enjoy most new quests without reservation.  This one, while excellent in overall depth and scope, had some problems.  

Speaking from a plot progression point of view, I got stuck in Myerdark trying to sneak past the vampires in a smoke cloud.  Monique flew right on by them, they never noticed her.  Me?  Probably spent 15 minutes getting constantly caught by the last vampire and sent back to the start.  Got a little tired of it.  But maybe that was just me, and a bit of bad luck.  I had more of an issue with the baby bloodvelds.  Apparently they appear randomly at pre-set locations.  I found 3, easy.  4, no problem.  5 was tough.  But that darn 6th bloodveld just wasn't anywhere.  I finally ran to one spot where they were known to appear, and as I paused, he suddenly showed up right next to me.  I spent a lot of time trying to find all 6, and apparently you don't have to collect them all, but we didn't know that.
Each thing taken alone wouldn't cause a problem.  But all 3 together was a serious run of stumbling blocks that took me out of the story, and added frustration.

On a much more serious direction, another problem was the tone of the story.  As the fantastical hero in a magical game, I've noticed Jagex sometimes puts me, the good guy, in a situation where I must do something I'm morally uncomfortable with.  Considering it's a fantasy, and I like being the good guy, I find it disturbing when I'm required to drink human blood, torment victims in prison, or kill captured humans for vampire entertainment.  Even if you don't worry about the message sent to our youth, at least give players a choice.  To give Jagex credit, they did offer a choice for killing humans.  It wasn't a palatable choice, and involved breaking away from the quest to collect a dagger I threw away years ago...  but they offered a choice.  For many of the other plot elements, there was no alternative.  Don't do the action, don't finish the quest.  As simple as that.

That being said, it IS just a game, and just elements in a story.  I understand it's not real life, and don't expect anybody to run amuck in real life because of Runescape.  So while I'm uncomfortable with it, I'm not TOO wound up about it.  It didn't destroy the quest for me, and I just went with the flow.  It's just something I've noticed with Runescape.  They don't have a problem taking an amoral stance, and sometimes I'm a bit uncomfortable with it.  No big deal.  Moving on, now...

I liked the complexity of the characters.  When your leader might turn into a bad guy, and your enemy has become your friend…  and they both seem to have a secret understanding...  Plus, as I mentioned, my own character seems to feel that the end justifies any means… then you just don't know what to expect at any moment. 

We finally get to see the actual vampire city, and explore it (In depth!)  We earn vampire high society rank, learn to make weapons deadly to vampires.  The city even has a useable bank and altar.  I haven't gone back after the fact and explored, but I've heard that you can use the new weapons, and access to Darkmeyer to kill vampires easily for slayer tasks.  I use Kuradel, and she's never assigned vampires yet to me… time will tell.

As far as the boss fight, Jagex struck a great balance this time.  I'm not very good at any kind of real-time combat.  My favorite fighting is pray-hit-eat.  That's why I had so much trouble with Jad and Nomad.  Vanstrom has elements of that.  You can't just go in and tank him.  But it wasn't beyond me.  To be honest, I got killed about 5 times.  2 times, my Ring of Life saved me.  Recovering your stuff from death is not too bad, it's all in a neat stack with your gravestone just outside the door to Vanstrom's home.  Losing my Yak and all the Rocktail he's carrying was a bigger pain.  But bearable.

Once the fight was over, and the final cutscene played out, I got my rewards.  Wow, talk about a great quest for rewards!  You get a ton of specific exp rewards, 3 50k chapters in the tome of knowledge.  (I put all three in Slayer.)  New weapons to be made, a cool new costume to wear. 

And… Drakan's Medallion, that can teleport you to Burgh de Rott, Meiyerditch Dungeon Lab, Meiyerditch Myreque hideout, the Barrows, and Darkmeyer.  This unlocks an area that's always been tedious to get to.  Easy access to Burgh de Rott now, with it's bank.  Quick trip to Barrows.  Between those two teleports, you can constantly be doing Barrows trips until you have ALL the Barrows Armor you want!  Plus, the dungeon laboratory?  Bloodveld assignments just got super-easy.  Take a cannon to the Mutated Bloodvelds, and blast through for fast exp in Slayer.

The Medallion has 10 charges, but only uses a charge if you're teleporting in from the rest of Runescape.  So long as you stay in that general area, there's 'No Charge' for the trip!  If you do need to recharge it, just dip it in the Pool, in the cave where you found the medallion.  (Very easy access from the Burgh de Rott teleport.)

I loved all the rewards, but that medallion has to be my favorite, even above the 150k the Tome of Knowledge gives.

So, put briefly- some things I didn't like, more that I did like, and the rewards are incredible.  This is a quest well worth doing.