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Bounty Hunter Rework Design and PvP Changes

The Bounty Hunter Rework
 

The long-awaited design for the Bounty Hunter rework is finally here! The proposed design overhauls many features of Bounty Hunter and includes a new points system, player bounties, and a brand new rewards shop. Each of these aspects were designed with three aims in mind: to make the minigame more rewarding, more exciting to play, and more attractive to both experienced PKers and beginners to PvP. Your feedback will be invaluable in shaping the minigame, so make sure to let us know what you think! We would also like to run a beta to test the proposed changes before changing the live game. A thank you goes out to all the players involved in the Bounty Hunter discussion that helped shape this design.

~ Mod Gambit

Click or tap on each of the drop down menus below to read about that feature of the rework. We reccommend reading this in order to get a sense of how the overall system would work:

The Points System
The Points System

The top piece of feedback on Bounty Hunter was that it's not rewarding enough to play. This called for a redesign of how players get rewards and the system for determining how much/what they should get. To address this, we propose an overhaul of the points system used to purchase items from the shop.

Here's a breakdown of how players would receive points in the revamped version of the minigame. This system was designed to be simple and to reward players for each kill they get:
  • A player who kills their BH target receives 1 point
  • Players on a killstreak of 3 or more receive double points
  • Players on a killstreak of 10 or more receive triple points
  • A killstreak ends when you are killed by any player, log out, or skip a target (with some exceptions).
These are the exceptions that would allow you to skip a target without losing your killstreak.
  • Your target is located in a multicombat area
  • You have been matched with your target for over 10 minutes
  • Your target does not have a mysterious emblem of the same or higher tier as you in their inventory (more on mysterious emblems later)
These are intended to prevent griefing.

Players will also receive bonus points at certain milestone in a similar way to how Slayer points are awarded (see table below).


Like Slayer points, these would be awarded each time the milestone is hit. This means you would receive 25 additional points for the 10th, 20th, and 30th kills and so on. These would be in addition to the points you receive per individual kill (1, 2 or 3 points depending on your killstreak).

Player Bounties
Player Bounties

As an additional challenge, players may complete tasks to receive an immediate 10 points. This will add variety and an extra level of challenge. The tasks will appear in the chatbox and differ from player to player. They will change automatically every half an hour. If you do not wish to complete the current bounty, it may be skipped immediately up to three times per day.
  • Get 2 kills without leaving the wilderness (crossing the ditch), trading, or picking up items from the ground
  • Kill an opponent using Ranged/Melee/Magic on the last hit
  • Kill an opponent while risking 250,000 GP (in coins/platinum tokens only)
  • Kill an opponent without using any prayers
  • Kill an opponent without using a special attack
  • Kill your opponent without using Protect Item
  • Kill your opponent without any stat boosts
One of these tasks would be available every 30 minutes. When you complete a task, you must wait for the remaining minutes on the timer to deplete before receiving your next. For example: a player receives their task and the 30 minute timer to refresh it begins. If they take 10 minutes to complete it, they must wait the remaining 20 to receive a new one. If the timer fully depletes before they complete the task, they will receive a new one.

Players will be able to check their current task and remaining time to complete it using the new overlay described in a later section of the blog.

It is not expected that players who are new to BH will complete the tasks as they are not compulsory. They are intended to add an extra incentive for the more accomplished bounty hunters. Players who do not wish to complete player bounties can 'hide' them with a button in the interface - this is described later in the BH Interface section.

Technical limitations prevent us from giving out tasks based on specific equipment being used. Let us know your thoughts on the proposed tasks and feel free to suggest additional ones.


 

The BH Store (Bounty Crates and Items)
The Bounty Hunter Shop

The existing BH shop faces a number of issues. Players are not motivated to buy supplies from the shop because it's more profitable to buy the items which give the best GP value per BH point. This make the majority of the shop redundant and unexciting.

We propose a new shop that sells crates containing supplies and the chance for unique loot. This shop would also sell cosmetic rewards and new supplies. The points earned from the points system and player bounties would serve as currency for this shop.

Bounty Hunter Crates


This is where players will make the most profit in the new system. These crates aim to serve as a consistent GP income and have a chance to offer big rewards. At a cost of 5 points in the shop, they would contain supplies and loot worth 100,000 GP on average. They would also roll once on a unique loot table which would contain the following items:
  • An upgrade for the Saradomin sword. This item would reduce the sword's special attack energy cost to 60% and deal magic based damage.
  • All Ancient Warriors' weapons. These would work in PvP only and Vesta's longsword would have a special attack costing 50% rather than 25%.
  • An Abyssal dagger upgrade. This would reduce its special attack energy cost to 25% and increase its accuracy by 20%.
  • Mysterious emblems. This would include all tiers.
  • Corrupt Dragon weaponry (battleaxe, dagger, longsword, mace, scimitar). These would require 20 attack and have the same stats as equivalent Dragon weapons. Once equipped, they will become untradeable and begin degrading to dust, which takes 30 minutes. They would only work in PvP. We're open to feedback on whether or not these should have the equivalent special attacks, or if the stats should be adjusted.
  • A Granite maul upgrade. The Granite maul is discussed in the detail in the PvP changes section of the blog. See that Granite maul drop down menu in that section for more infomation on how this upgrade item will work.
Items


The shop would also offer a variety of other rewards that could be bought directly:

Bounty Hunter Hat

We would also like to add a new hat to the BH shop which would be available for free. This would be cosmetic only and exist separately to the existing Hunter's Honour and Rogue's Revenge. The current hats only show whether you have more target kills or rogue kills.

This new hat would change in appearance at given milestones. It would have six tiers, upgrading at each of these target kill milestones: 10, 100, 500, 2000, and 5000.

Supplies

The shop would offer the following supplies:
  • Omni runes. These are an untradeable rune that acts as all elemental runes that are usable in PvP areas only (1 point for 100 runes)
  • Teleport tablets for the Teleport to Bounty Target spell. These would require that the spell has first been unlocked (1 point per tab)
Cosmetic Recolours:

The following items would have recolours offered in the shop (25 points each):
  • Magic shortbow
  • Spiked manacles
  • Rune crossbow
  • Ghostly robes
  • Elder chaos druid robes
  • Fighter torso recolours
  • Ancient staff
Special Attack Recolours (permanent unlocks):

The following special attack animations could be changed to appear a different colour as a permanent unlock (100 points each):
  • AGS special attack animation: swirl appears gold (normally white)
  • BGS special attack animation: slam appears gold (normally white)
  • SGS special attack animation: uppercut appears gold (normally blue)
  • ZGS special attack animation: swipe appears gold (normally red)
Other:
  • Rune pouch. This would remain in the shop (250 points)
  • The teleport to target spell unlock (250 points)
Along with this shop, a new Bounty Hunter NPC could be added - the Emblem Trader is only interested in mysterious emblems, after all! This new NPC would host the shop as well as explain the rules of Bounty Hunter. They could also provide stats such as your number of kills (this is mentioned later in the BH Interface section). If having two NPCs (the emblem trader and the new one) would be confusing, the Emblem Trader's duties could be handed over to the new NPC. Let us know what you think of this idea.

The point costings of all rewards are suggested only and subject to balancing. Let us know how these should be tweaked in your feedback. We're also excited to hear which weapons you think could receive upgrade items for the crates or any other items you think would belong there!


Mysterious Emblems
So if points from the new system are used to buy from the shop, where does this leave mysterious emblems? The current mysterious emblem system faces two major issues. Firstly, it is not profitable enough for players. Second, the system lends itself to being boosted. To prevent boosting with alternate accounts, mysterious emblems must produce zero net gold. However, they must produce a profit for individual bounty hunters who wish to use them. This is our proposed solution: The first step is to ensure mysterious emblems only come from Bounty Hunter. This means making all tiers untradeable and removing them from the Wilderness Slayer loot table. New emblems would also no longer be generated by killing your target (you would still receive upgrades to your existing emblems). So where would emblems come from? Emblems would be bought and sold to and from the emblem trader. In the new system, a player willing to accept the extra risk would purchase an emblem from the trader, upgrade it by killing a target with another emblem, and sell it back to the trader for a profit. Below is a proposed table for the prices of each mysterious emblem tier: To be eligible for an emblem upgrade, you would need to kill a target with an emblem of the same or higher tier. Killing them would upgrade your emblem while theirs is lost. In this way, the emblem system would generate zero net gold, removing the potential profits for emblem farmers while being profitable for solo PKers. An example: two players buy a tier one emblem from the trader for 75k each. They receive each other as targets and Player A kills Player B. Player A's emblem upgrades to tier two and Player B's emblem is lost. Player A's emblem is now worth 150k and they can sell it to the emblem trader for a profit for 75k. Alternatively, they could risk their tier two emblem for a shot of doubling its value again. The purpose of emblems in this system is to allow players to choose their level of risk while playing BH and be matched with players of similar risk. You would be able to freely skip targets who don't have a mysterious emblem of the same or higher tier without affecting your killstreak. This means you have the option to fight targets with lower risk but are not forced to. To ensure finding a target with a chance to upgrade your emblem are not too rare, the total number of tiers would be reduced to five. In summary, mysterious emblems would be used by players looking for additional chances to earn gold while playing BH. A successful BH player would match with others carrying emblems, gain upgrades and cash in their profits at the emblem trader in addition earning rewards via crates from the shop. The emblems themselves would no longer be used to buy items from the shop directly. We understand that this is a big change to the mysterious emblem system and would affect many players holding onto emblems they currently own. Before any system like the one above is implemented, players would have ample warning and a grace period to prepare. During this time, you'll be able to cash in your stored emblems for the current rewards via the emblem trader. Any of the old emblems still in players banks or inventories after the grace period will be removed.

The BH Interface As part of the rework, we would like to improve the Bounty Hunter interface. It currently takes more space than it needs to and would need to accomodate different information if the above features are implemented. We propose removing the Rogue and Hunter kills record to free up space - this information could be given to the player by asking the Emblem Trader or new potential Bounty Hunter NPC. The wealth indicator is also not particularly helpful in determining just how much your target is risking. We would like to remove this as well. A new interface would show the name of your target, whether or not they are carrying an emblem, whether or not you qualify for an emblem upgrade if you kill them, and their location (a range of Wilderness levels similar to the current version). A button would be added for reminding you what your current bounty task is and a button to receive a new one. It would also have a timer showing you the remaining time you have to complete your task. This task section of the interface would be expandable via a button on the interface. If there are any other improvements to the interface you would like to see, make sure to include it in your feedback!

Other Changes Here is a list of smaller changes that would be included in the rework:

Bounty Essence Another system for upgrading weapons for PvP has also been suggested. Once a weapon has been upgraded with an item earned from crates in the shop (like the Abyssal dagger attachment), it would then be charged with a new resource: Bounty Essence. This resource would be dropped by your targets as well as awarded from crates. It would be tradeable, offering an alternate source of GP for players in the minigame. This system would help balancing the minigame and weapons - let us know if you like the idea!


PvP Integrity Changes

In our Small Game Improvements poll blog, we discussed a number of PvP Changes. The decisions made regarding each of those changes can be found in the drop down menus below. These changes are separate from the Bounty Hunter design section of the blog.

These changes will go ahead without a poll for necessary rebalancing to protect the health of PvP. Large amounts of feedback and ongoing discussion informed these decisions. While no single outcome will please everyone, these changes were decided with the integrity of PvP and fairness at the top of our priorities.

The changes mentioned in the Magic Defence Calculation section are not to be made as integrity but are included as a point of discussion.

The Granite Maul The Granite maul is a weapon almost exclusively used in PvP. Despite being a low level weapon (requiring only 50 Strength and Attack to use), it offers huge KO potential with its special attack because it hits your opponent instantly, allowing you to stack high amounts of damage. On top of this, the Granite maul is low cost compared to other weapons with similarly high KO potential, like Dragon claws and the Armadyl godsword. To re-balance the Granite maul, it's special attack cost is being increased from 50% to 60%. We realise that this is a big change and affects many players accounts that are built around the weapon. To avoid making it unviable in PvP altogether, an upgrade item will be introduced that can be attached to the Granite maul, reducing its special attack energy cost back to 50%. This upgrade item will be available from the Bounty Hunter store for 1,250,000 Bounty Hunter points. In the original blog, we suggested that this item would be always lost on death but in response to feedback, this is no longer the case. However, if the item is not protected, it will be converted to 375,000 coins on death and the Granite maul will be lost. If the shop changes described in the Bounty Hunter rework design go ahead, the same upgrade item will be on the loot table of the Bounty Crates. Until then, the item will be available in the BH store currently accessible via the Emblem Trader.

Dinh's Bulwark Dinh's Bulwark is a powerful two-handed shield used for tanking. Because tanking is not a prominent mechanic often required in PvM, the Bulwark is commonly used to tank while escaping PvP situations. In the Small Game Improvements blog, we suggested reducing the Bulwark's stats by 10 across the board. This was offered because we believe that no single item should allow players to tank this effectively for no risk. In combination with inexpensive Black dragonhide armour, the Bulwark leaves players almost impervious to Magic in PvP. In response to feedback, we have adjusted our approach. Instead of reducing all of its stats by 10 points, we will instead reduce its Magic defence bonus from +18 to 0. This is a relatively minor change in terms of how often spells are likely to hit. Rather than make a drastic change and revert it later, we have opted to make this minor change and monitor its effects. Further changes could follow as necessary.

Bind, Snare and Entangle This topic was not discussed in the original post, but we wanted to address it here. Bind, Snare and Entangle are the spells on the standard spell book that allow you to prevent your opponent from moving for 5, 10, and 14.4 seconds respectively. Currently, these durations are halved if cast on an opponent who is using the Protect from Magic Prayer. In response to player feedback, we will remove this condition. It has been commonly requested that we make the Snare and Entangle spells available to non-members (Bind is already a free to play spell). However, if we make Entangle more effective by easing the conditions, there are concerns it would be overpowered in non-members worlds. So for the time being, only Snare will be made available to non-members. This change will be monitored and Entangle may also be made free to play in future if other changes mean it would not be overpowered.

Spec Tabbing, Imbued God Capes, and Untradeables in PvM Following feedback on the proposal to revert the teleport restriction that occurs after using a special attack in PvP, we have decided not to go ahead with this change. Imbued God Capes will be changed to behave as other untradeables do and turn to broken form when dropped (by death or manually) in PvP. Similar to other items, Perdu will repair imbued God capes for a fee. This option is preferable to also being always lost on death in PvP. Discussions around how untradeables should behave upon death in PvM are still ongoing. Because it's a large topic and outside the scope of PvP, no decision has been made just yet. Any changes in this area proposed as a result of your feedback and discussion within the team will be polled.

Magic Defence Calculation in PvP Many of the balancing issues in PvP are a result of the same items also being used in PvM. This inevitably means buffs or nerfs to given items will often benefit one group while negatively affecting the other. A notable example of this is the Bulwark discussed above. Similarly, there are concerns that Black dragonhide is too effective in PvP relative to its cost. One way around this is to change the way items behave in PvP situations, such as how the Toxic blowpipe has a lower attack speed when used against other players. However, it is not easy or practical to have different versions or behaviours of every piece of equipment - this could lead to confusion for players who are not used to PvP, and vice versa. Instead, we'd like to offer a different approach - differentiating the way Magic defence is calculated against players. Currently, Magic defence is calculated using the players' Magic stat and Defence stat. This is weighted 70/30, heavily relying on the former (which is why the Bulwark change mentioned above is expected to have only a minor effect). In Deadman Mode, this was changed to a 50/50 weighting - this could be a useful starting point to make adjustments from. Before any changes are made to the live game, we would like to test adjusting the way magic defence is calculated. These adjustments can be tested in betas (the upcoming second LMS beta or the future Bounty Hunter beta will be good opportunities for this). While any testing is ongoing, we encourage you to try the changes out and let us know what you think. If no particular change is found to be suitable, balancing equipment in PvP will continue as it has previously.

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