You can break Summoning 2 into two halves. The first is a rebalancing of the skill using your feedback. We have chosen to do this because we wanted Summoning to be one of the most well-loved and appreciated skills, so your help was needed to get it back on track.
What did we find out from the Forums? You told us that familiars did not stick around for long enough before they disappeared, and that renewing them was often a pain. With this update, each familiar stays out for a set period of time, regardless of the summoner's skill level, so there is no need to renew your familiar. The period that each familiar stays summoned has, in general, been increased - the spirit dagannoth, for example, stays out for a whopping 57 minutes!
Secondly, you told us that summoning familiars just wasn't rewarding enough. With the rebalancing, we have given each familiar a stand-out ability that makes them well worth summoning - a feature that budding Pikkupstixes have been eager for. You will now find that Summoning a creature is far more preferable to either selling the pouch or high-alching it.
Many of you felt that combat familiars should give combat XP. We definitely agree, so each combat familiar now gives XP when they cause damage. The amount is equal to how much you would have received, had you done the damage yourself. The experience will be in one of the combat skills, which depends on your choice of familiar - the spirit jelly, for example, gives XP in the Strength stat.
Taking your combat familiar into battle will reveal our next improvement: each creature is significantly tougher. They can soak up damage like never before and many will hit harder, making them more than useful for challenges like the God Wars. We can only encourage you to try them out and see just how improved their combat abilities are.
Acquiring charms has been made easier this week, with charm drops added to nearly 20 of our Slayer creatures. For those who prefer sleight of hand over the crossing of swords, we have also added charms to the Dorgesh-Kaan chests, so thieves can access them, too.
Recharging Summoning points has been made easier, with miniature obelisks scattered across the world to keep you topped up; you can now summon familiars almost anywhere and take them with you without worrying too much about having to dismiss them; buttons have been added to help you 'dump' items from your familiar to your inventory and your familiar to your bank; headgear and headdresses can hold more scrolls per item; many existing helmets can be enchanted to hold scrolls; and some of the familiars' inventories have been expanded to a jaw-dropping 30 slots, so your pak yak can now hold more than you can. Phew!
For more details of what has changed with the Summoning rebalancing, visit the Knowledge Base page.
The second half of Summoning 2 is what we originally planned when Summoning was first released: an injection of high-level, dauntingly huge beasts. So, this week, the big guns arrive, largely in the form of the titans. These humanoid creatures don't only have a killer punch; significantly increase your chance of success when Mining and Firemaking, boil adventurers in their own armour or even recharge amulets of glory! You can expect them to range all the way up to level 99, too.
A few inches shorter, but no less daunting, are the big cats from the Hunter skill. As an example of just how many things each familiar can offer you, the graahk, kyatt and larupia are capable of teleporting you to Hunter areas, boosting your chances of trapping a creature, and lending a powerful paw when you need them in battle.
We can guarantee that the other familiars do more than make up the numbers. Fans of Pest Control will know the void pests, with their ability to teleport you to the landers, while other recognisable familiars include the talon beast, spirit mosquito, pyrelord and the fearsome giant chinchompa. These familiars are spread over the Summoning skill levels, inviting you to train it that little bit higher. So, go grab your charms and get stuck in!