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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Runescape: Harvest Heaven Farming Update

Monique checking her Fly Traps
I kind of skipped over The Nexus, Runescape's recent low-level prayer activity.  Sooner or later Monique and I will go collect the 37k exp it promises.  No rush.

Yesterday though, Runescape finally released the high level farming update, "Harvest Heaven".  10 new plants, some new produce, some skill training,  and bringing into use some of the lesser-used farming plots.

Starting at level 76 and going up to 96, the new seeds offer a variety of benefits.  Monique has always loved farming.  Farming was her first skill cape, and for a long time she impressed people with her untrimmed Farming Cape.  Eventually she began collecting other 99s, but that 99 Farming was her point of pride.

So it was no surprise to come home from work and find she had been avidly farming the new seeds.  She didn't bother much with the produce-bearing plants.  I can understand why.  Snape grass and Potato Cactus are old news.  It's kind of nice to finally be able to grow them, but I'm going to wait and watch the market before jumping in.  Same with Reed Beds and Butterfly Flowers.  The benefits sound nice if you need them, but we don't need the actual produce they make.

As far as making a profit, it seems prudent to wait and see how the market reacts to the update before jumping in with both feet.  The grapevines are much the same.  I'm not going to jump into it unless it becomes a steady money-making activity.

In the other category, skill crossovers offer thieving experience for Fly Traps, Agility exp for Barberry bushes, and Strength/Defence for Sunchokes and Prickly Pears.  This sounds great until you try it.  As a high-level player, Monique found the skilling rewards to be significantly underpowered.  They just weren't worth her time and effort.

Not being such an avid farmer, the only seed I grew was the Wishing Well seed.  This bush, when grown, requires a cash deposit to harvest.  The amount is based on your total level.  It charged me well over half a million gold to harvest, and in return gave me back a bunch of stuff with a total value of... 300k gold.  Plus, it's just a one-shot.  You plant it, you harvest it, you grow another plant.  Sorry if you were hoping otherwise, but the Wishing Well bush is destroyed when you harvest it.
So, I lost money.  Monique planted two of them, lost money on one and broke even on the other.  Given that we bought those seeds for 70k each, it was a losing proposition.  In my opinion, these might be worth planting if I happen to obtain one, but it's not worth buying in hopes of a profit.

If you're a high level farmer looking to train to 99, some of these new plants might be of interest.  The farming update isn't so much a game-changer as it is a game-enhancer.  Having new and interesting ways to train can bring back some fun to the training grind.  Monique is still experimenting with the seeds, and if she tells me some are profitable, I'll follow her lead. 

Other than that, I'll just keep playing like I usually do, and leave the farming to her.

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