|Release date||25 March 2004 (Update)|
|Removal date||4 January 2022 (Update)|
|In spotlight rotation||No|
|Hiscores||Yes (tournament rank)|
|Music unlocked||Shine, Duel Arena|
|Developers||• Original: Jonathan S|
• 1st update: Nancy J
• 2nd update: Ashleigh B
• 3rd update Anthony W
|Infobox • Talk page|
Duel Arena challenge areas were identified upon entering by a battleaxe () which appeared in the top left hand corner of the interface. Upon entering the Arena, the right-click duelling option was disabled. Cosmetics were likewise disabled unless they were a retro override of what the player currently had equipped.
History[edit | edit source]
Early History[edit | edit source]
Despite being property of Al Kharid, the Duel Arena was in fact much older than the town. The arena was constructed as early as the Second Age by the Menaphite demi-god Het to store an ancient, powerful amulet that he wished to forget about. Over time, a massive arena was built over it to allow Het's followers to spar and train. There was also a nearby settlement, but little remains of that today.
At some point in history, parts of the Duel Arena, and the area around it, were destroyed. The arena was most likely seized by the Zarosian forces during the early stages of the Kharidian-Zarosian War, where they marched on with little resistance. The fortress of Kharid-Et, which lay slightly farther to the south became the marker of the southern border of the Zarosian Empire. The Duel Arena itself suffered surprisingly little damage, even surviving the following violent campaigns in the Third Age. Over time, long after it had last been used, the arena was buried by sand and forgotten by mankind.
Fifth Age[edit | edit source]
In the late Fifth Age, excavations started in a dig site east of Varrock, where the ruins of three ancient cities, Saranthium, a Zamorakian city and Senntisten, had been discovered. With agreement of Emir Shah of Al Kharid, archaeologists broadened their search in the desert town and uncovered the Duel Arena. With only ancient symbols, statues and carvings to remind people of its original purpose, the Duel Arena became a commercial attraction. Run by master duellists such as Mubariz, adventurers and other fighters alike were invited to participate in one-on-one duels in the partially excavated arena. A Saradominist hospital was erected with the aid of the Abbey of St. Elspeth Citharede and the arena attracted many visitors to watch the duels. Archaeological work stagnated in the area, and as such the Duel Arena had not completely been unveiled until later in the Sixth Age.
Sixth Age[edit | edit source]
During the Elder God Wars, when Icthlarin returned from his trek across the multiverse to seek out potential allies for Gielinor, he noted the use of necromancy by Zamorak's forces to sustain themselves from the Elders' forces. He proposed using Het's amulet, the Eye of Het, as an alternative to necromancy, which Saradomin and Seren immediately accepted, despite warning them that the amulet might not be suitable for the battle they were waging. Icthlarin promised to retrieve the amulet, which was buried deep within his shrine underneath the Duel Arena, indicating that something will take place soon there.
Icthlarin was sent by Seren to excavate the area to search for the Eye of Het. However before they could begin work, a mysterious earthquake destroyed the Duel Arena, further damaging the Statue of Het and leaving most of the structures in ruin. The five sub-arena's and most ground level areas were buried in by sand and filled with water from an underground aquifer. The cause of the earthquake was revealed to be the result of magical disturbance when General Khazard, on behalf of Zamorak, attempted to enter the Het tomb to steal the Eye of Het. The newly created oasis attracted the attention of many crocodiles who moved into the area feasting on scarabs in the water. An Oasis Restoration led by Icthlarin and Etta Stone quickly began and the rubble around the area was cleared. Excavated pieces of Het were used to fully reconstruct the Statue of Het. With the help of the World Guardian, Icthlarin was able to retrieve the Eye of Het within the Het tomb, however, it was later stolen by General Khazard and destroyed by Zamorak.
Getting there[edit | edit source]
The arena is located north-east of Al Kharid:
- A Ring of duelling teleports directly to the arena entrance.
- Home Teleport to Al Kharid lodestone, and then walk north-west.
- The Dig sites map in the Archaeology Guild, or a Master archaeologist's outfit, teleports to Kharid-et Dig Site, then go north.
- Fire altar teleport and then go south.
Features[edit | edit source]
The main entrance is on the west side of the Duel Arena. This is where the majority of players enter to challenge others. Surgeon General Tafani and her associates can heal players when needed. There is also two bank chests and an altar in this entry area. The capability to heal and recharge Prayer are somewhat useless however, as when a player enters a duel, all statistics are restored to their normal levels.
There is a summoning obelisk outside the western entrance.
Picking a fight[edit | edit source]
To fight another player, players must right-click their intended opponent and select the "Challenge" option. By doing so, they will have the option to do a "friendly" duel or a "staked" one. This will tell that player that someone wishes to duel with them, and they accept by challenging that player in return.
This will open the duelling options screen, which defines the parameters for the battle. The screen shows the name and combat level of the opponent, as well as the amount of coins each player is offering up for a "bet", or a "stake". Pay-to-play players can bet up to 50,000,000 coins while free-to-play players can only bet up to 40,000 coins. Finally, there are 11 different options that can be turned on or off and are adjustable by either player. These are detailed as follows:
- No Ranged: No ranging weaponry can be equipped during the battle.
- No Melee: Players cannot engage in hand-to-hand combat, including bare fists/feet.
- No Magic: No magical attack spells can be cast.
- No Abilities: Abilities and special attacks cannot be used. (Members only)
- Fun Weapons: The only allowed weapons are the "fun weapons". See Fun Weapons for eligible weapons.
- No Forfeit: Players cannot escape the arena; the fight lasts until one player dies.
- No Drinks: Players cannot drink anything that boosts stats, such as potions. All stats that are boosted prior to the fight are reset to their default values once the fight begins.
- No Food/Health Portents: Eating food and/or using the phoenix necklace/restoration portents is not allowed.
- No Prayer: Use of any Prayers is not allowed.
- No Movement: Players cannot move during the battle, and they start next to each other, which means they can still use melee. Players are also prevented from being knocked back by Kick or similar abilities, as well as the special attacks of the dragon and Zamorakian spear. Surge and Escape cannot be used at all.
- Obstacles: The arena becomes like a mini-maze during the fight, also the fighting area is separated from the obstacle-free one.
- Enable Summoning: Players are allowed to summon during the battle. This is also separated from the obstacle-free and obstacle arena(s).
It is also possible to take equipped items off on this screen, rangers should be careful not to check off shield if they intend to use a bow.
Players cannot challenge another player to a duel if either of them have an augmented item in their inventory.
Fun weapons[edit | edit source]
To start a duel with the "Fun Weapons" option, both players must have at least one "Fun Weapon" equipped or in their inventory. During the duel, a player may not attack if they are unarmed, have no mainhand weapon equipped or have a ranged weapon equipped.
The following items are classed as "Fun Weapons":
The following items count as "Fun Weapons" but disable attacking:
|Drinking horn||Slimeball||Water balloon|
The following items count as "Fun Weapons" but cannot be attacked with since they are Ranged weapons:
|Mud pie||Snowball (2014 Christmas event)|
Restrictions[edit | edit source]
Some of the options cannot be combined with one another, as they would create situations where players would either not be able to duel. Examples include:
- No Ranged, No Melee, and No Magic cannot be active all at once, as players will not be able to fight at all.
- No Forfeit cannot be enabled alongside No Melee as players may run out of ammo or runes.
- Obstacles cannot be enabled alongside No Movement, as they would serve no purpose due to players being unable to hide behind them.
- Familiars cannot be enabled if Obstacles is enabled, as they may become stuck.
- Fun Weapons cannot be enabled alongside No Melee as players may only attack with melee Fun Weapons.
- No Melee cannot be enabled if the mainhand slot is disabled because players cannot use ranged or magic if they are not wielding a weapon in their mainhand.
- The quiver slot cannot be disabled if No Melee and No Magic are enabled, even though options exist for ranged without the quiver slot (such as thrown weapons and chargebows).
Arenas[edit | edit source]
The Duel Arena has four sub-arenas and one smaller boxing ring, the assigned arena is determined by the duel restrictions chosen. The north-west and south-east arenas are only assigned when "obstacles" are enabled for the duel. The south-west arena is assigned when "no movement" is enabled, while the north-east arena is assigned when it is disabled. The small arena to the east is a boxing ring assigned when both the main-hand and off-hand weapon slots are disabled and "no ranged", "no magic", and "no movement" are enabled.
Additionally, an instanced arena is used for summoning enabled duels. Duels in the instanced arena cannot be spectated by other players, however there are two spectator NPC's watching the duel. Previously, an instance was used if the non-instanced sub-arenas were full and for "boxing matches" before the boxing ring was added in 2013.
Each arena has two forfeit doors located on opposite ends of one another that can be used to resign from a duel. If "no movement" is enabled, the doors can simply be clicked to bring up the forfeit chatbox.
Combat[edit | edit source]
When the battle begins, players are teleported into one of the sub-arenas with a 3-second recited countdown before the fighting actually begins, a yellow arrow appears above their opponent. If "No Forfeit" was not checked off, players who are losing (or simply wish to end the duel early) can retreat through one of the forfeit doors, bringing up a confirmation screen. Anything staked is awarded to the other player. When a player's opponent has a weapon with a speed of 5 ticks or faster (For example, dual wielded weapons), or if they are in EoC combat mode (due to the 3-tick global cooldown and damage over time abilities), it is relatively difficult, if not impossible, to forfeit, as the screen to confirm "Yes", disappears when attacked.
Outcome[edit | edit source]
After the battle ends, both players are transported back to the arena's lobby, where all of their stats, including life points, prayer points, and Summoning points, are fully restored, and any debuffs such as poison or Vulnerability are cleared. Any ranged ammo that fell to the ground during the duel will be automatically returned to its owner, unless they have no inventory space to hold it, in which case it will be placed on the ground at the owner's feet when they respawn. If there was a stake, the victor claims the prize(s).
If the duel lasts for 15 minutes, the outcome will end in a draw and both players will be refunded the amount staked. If a player logs out during a duel, it will result in a loss, rather than a tie, for the player that logged out.
There are three scoreboards, where players can view the last 50 battles on that server: One outside the west entrance, one within the main entrance, and one along the north wall. The scoreboards show the combat levels of the combatants and who won the round. The scoreboard automatically updates every five minutes.
Watching a duel[edit | edit source]
If a player walks up the stone steps leading to the statue of Het, the player will be in a network of walkways on top of the walls of the various Arena rooms. A good view of the fights from up here is available. If you right-click on a certain part of wall, you'll be given a "Lean against" option. If you select it, you will get a close up overhead view of the battles. You can exit this window by either clicking the large "Done" button that appears or by clicking X in the smaller sub-window by the minimap (if on Legacy Interface Mode). Another viewing option is to right-click the compass button on the minimap and selecting "Freecam" which allows the user to move the camera around freely.
NPCs[edit | edit source]
The following NPCs are found at the Duel Arena:
- Captain Daerkin
- Head Registrar
- Surgeon General Tafani
Historical gameplay[edit | edit source]
Stake limit[edit | edit source]
On release there were no staking limits and only pay-to-play players could use the Duel Arena.
On 20 November 2007 a limit of 3,000 gold (or items value thereof) per stake, per every 15 minutes, was put into place. This update was heavily criticised by players. On 30 September 2008, the limit was raised to 5,000 coins and 60,000 coins depending on quest points. For free-to-play, the limit was raised to 10,000 coins. On 1 February 2010, the trade limit was updated again. Friends with each other's names on the friends list for over 1 month will have their trade limit doubled when trading with each other, tripled if over 2 months, and quadrupled if over 3 months. However, the limit was reset if one accidentally removed the friend from their list. With the Wilderness & free trade update on 1 February 2011, pay-to-play players could once again bet a limitless amount of money, or items in any value. While free-to-play players could only bet up to their trade cap in coins or items worth up to that amount.
On 8 November 2021, in an effort to counter real-world trading, a stake cap was put in place of 50,000,000 coins for pay-to-play duels, and 40,000 coins for free-to-play. Items could no longer be staked.
Tournaments[edit | edit source]
On 20 November, 2007, A new way of participating in the Duel Arena called tournament mode was added. Up to 64 players can compete and the entry fee is based on the registrar the tournament is being held from; up to 1 million coins on register 5 for a 64 player tournament.
In the Tournament dungeon, 5 registrars hold 5 different tournaments with random rules varying on difficulties. The rules might include food or potion usage, healing between rounds and special attacks, although some rules never change.
All combat styles are always allowed (to discourage real world trading) and there are rarely ever obstacles. Additionally, winning or losing against a player will affect the winner's and loser's tournament rank. If a weak player loses against a high levelled player the tournament points won or lost won't be of much significance.
Tournaments are also restricted with a range of tournament ranks allowed; the tournament value depends on the set of rules and the rank range allowed. It also affects the players rank more or less at the end of the tournament respecting to its value.
On 20 October 2009, the tournaments were reworked in response to player feedback asking for fairer fights. As a result, registrars are now assigned on entry to the waiting area based on a player's highest status in strength/range/magic.
Each registrar now has a rank cap limit, incrementing in 500s; Registrar 1 has a rank cap of 1999, Registrar 4 has a cap of 3499, and Registrar 5 has no rank cap. Ranks are now secured at every 500 milestone. If a player has a rank of 1754, said player cannot fall below a rank of 1500.
Rewards have also been affected: first place in a tournament will only receive 80% of entry fees, and second place now receives 20%.
With the Wilderness & free trade update on 1 February 2011, the tournaments were removed from the game. Jagex stated that it was not providing the service that both they and players wanted, and it was better to remove it overall.
Removal[edit | edit source]
In September 2021 it was revealed that the Duel Arena would be removed and replaced with different content in Old School RuneScape. It was also confirmed that similar plans were being looked into by the RuneScape team and more news would be shared in the future. On 13 October 2021 a newspost concerning the real-world trading and game integrity was published, identifying the Duel Arena as the source of 38% of bans related to real world-trading. It was announced that in the early 2021 the Duel Arena will be replaced with new content related to the Elder God Wars storyline in the early 2022 and that a staking cap of 50 million coins will be introduced in November as a temporary countermeasure. This change was introduced to the game in an update on 8 November. On 21 December it was revealed that the Duel Arena will be removed on 4 January 2022 and replaced with Het's Oasis, a skilling and narrative content taking place in the ruins of the arena destroyed by an earthquake.
Gallery[edit | edit source]
Update history[edit | edit source]
- update 8 November 2021 (Update):
- Players may now only stake a maximum of 50 million coins per player, per fight at the Duel Arena.
- patch 28 September 2020 (Update):
- Familiar overrides are now reapplied when the player leaves the Duel Arena.
- patch 13 July 2020 (Update):
- The Duel Arena scoreboard will no longer display errors when players have long account names and high combat levels.
- patch 25 November 2019 (Update):
- The constitution skillcape effect will no longer work when in a fight in the duel arena.
- patch 4 November 2019 (Update):
- Expanded the area which is considered the lobby of the Duel arena for the purposes of an easy clue scroll.
- patch 1 July 2019 (Update):
- You can no longer remove items from your toolbelt whilst in the duel arena.
- update 11 February 2019 (Update):
- Updated the Duel Arena interfaces to use the modern interface frame style.
- ninja 13 November 2017 (Update):
- Free players now have the option to utilise Summoning creatures within the Duel Arena (Spirit Wolf and Dreadfowl). This option can be controlled within the challenge interface via the Enable summoning toggle.
- ninja 31 July 2017 (Update):
- Players are now locked to 1 of 5 locations (each corner and the centre) within the Dual Arena when initiating a No Movement challenge.
- ninja 17 July 2017 (Update):
- The purple Clan Wars portal and staked duels have been added to the high-risk area entry bank PIN toggle.
- ninja 8 May 2017 (Update):
- The duel arena has been updated:
- The minimum number of players in a duelling arena before private arenas are created for new duels has been lowered to 10 (from 20).
- The south-west duelling arena is now reserved for no-movement duels only.
- Players will no longer spawn on top of another player at the start of a no-movement duel.
- The duel arena has been updated:
- patch 5 December 2016 (Update):
- Players will no longer see previously staked players' inventories at the Duel Arena.
- patch 11 January 2016 (Update):
- It is no longer possible to place box traps within the Duel Arena arenas.
- patch 13 July 2015 (Update):
- Passive Godsword effects will no longer work in duels with special attack/abilities disabled.
- patch 13 April 2015 (Update):
- Players can no longer use the lava whip's special attack in a no movement duel.
- patch 19 January 2015 (Update):
- The dragon battleaxe special attack buff is now cleared upon starting a duel.
- patch 10 November 2014 (Update):
- Players can no longer use the Excalibur special effect in Duel Arena with the abilities rule toggled off.
- patch 1 November 2014 (Update):
- Marinated jogre bones and celebration cakes will no longer stall damage in Duel Arena.
- patch 22 July 2014 (Update):
- Queued spells are now cleared from previous duels if the players next duel has Magic disabled in legacy mode.
- patch 13 May 2013 (Update):
- An issue with an elite compass treasure trail not showing 'X' when you standing on the correct spot near Duel Arena has been fixed.
- patch 24 April 2013 (Update):
- Some green polygons that are visible when using the orb of oculus at the Duel Arena have been removed.
- patch 28 January 2013 (Update):
- A new "pocket" rule set has been added to Duel Arena.
- Flowers can now be used as fun weapons in the Duel Arena again.
- patch 4 December 2012 (Update):
- Duel arena now states "No Abilities" rather than "No special attacks".
- patch 17 October 2011 (Update):
- If you activate a dragonfire shield’s special attack before entering a duel, it will be deactivated when the duel begins.
- patch 21 September 2011 (Update):
- The Prayer Renew timer is now stopped when entering a Duel Arena match.
- patch 17 August 2011 (Update):
- The ring of stone, Easter ring, and bone brooch are now restricted in duels if ‘disable rings’ is selected.
- patch 1 June 2011 (Update):
- It is no longer possible to smuggle extra food into a duel using a dismissed familiar.
- patch 12 April 2011 (Update):
- The vecna skull is now restricted using the ‘No Potions’ rule.
- The vecna skull's cooldown is now reset on leaving a duel.
- The overload potion's effects are now reset when entering a duel, in line with resetting all stats.
- patch 9 February 2011 (Update):
- It is no longer possible to try to stake a number of items greater than what can be held in a player's inventory.
- The countdown at the beginning of a duel is now far more synchronised.
- patch 14 December 2010 (Update):
- Performing emotes while trying to begin a duel will no longer give a confusing message about incorrect equipped items.
- patch 24 November 2010 (Update):
- Korasi’s sword’s special attack no longer works in ‘No specials’ duels.
- patch 6 October 2010 (Update):
- No longer play the death sound twice in the Duel Arena.
- Fixed the start sound effects in the Duel Arena.
- patch 3 December 2009 (Update):
- Inserted a proper fix for the fruit bat familiar when used in the Duel Arena.
- patch 2 September 2009 (Update):
- The new capabilities of our graphics engine have enabled us to update the feature where you lean on the Duel Arena walls to spectate. In particular, you can now control your camera while watching the duels below.
- patch 21 April 2009 (Update):
- Ensured that the correct attack options are displayed outside of the Duel Arena.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Prior to 10 December 2007, the Duel Arena was members only.
- Setting ranged on, arrows off and movement off, the game was fooled and players stood facing each other unable to attack, making the duel never ending. It was also used as a scam, with a duel set to only ranged, movement off, and at the last second arrows off, one player used knives while the other player couldn't use a bow. This is no longer possible. However, as there are many ways to create this scenario, the situation itself can still occur.
- Entering a duel with movement turned off between two melee players, one used the "fetch" interaction with a pet rock to be able to move, and could then range or mage their opponent to death. This is no longer possible.
- "Snowball fights" are sometimes (but rarely) used as scams. Players would each stake items and set no melee, ranged, magic and fun weapons. The idea of this was that the opponent would eventually give up and forfeit, losing the stake. Setting no forfeit as well would make it time out.
- Just under 25,000 players are ranked in the tournament hiscores because it required 1800 or more points.
- Both the ice amulet and the snow imp it summons are not allowed into duelling, though they actually have no effect in combat. They are from the 2008 Christmas event.
- If you run on top of the arenas and talk to the NPCs, one may shout "Keep Fighting!!! It's Just a Flesh Wound!", in reference to the Black Knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
References[edit | edit source]
- ^ a b Mod Emilee. "Duel Arena - FAQ." 19 April 2013. Recent Game Updates Forums.
- ^ Zaros, "Fate of the Gods", RuneScape. "I expected little resistance from the forests to the south"
- ^ Mod Hohbein. "Wilderness & Free Trade Q&A." 2 February 2011. Community Home Forums.
- ^ Mod Miva. First mention of Duel Arena removal. Reddit. 24 September 2021. (Archived from the original on 26 April 2022.) Mod Miva: "Greetings everyone! Thank you for your constructive feedback and suggestions so far regarding the Duel Arena. We are looking into similar plans in parallel with Old School and exploring a few options. We will share more details with you as soon as we have news and plans to share. Stay tuned for more information."
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