There are two main classes of clans. The newer-class clans are based on the RuneScape clan forums, and commonly referred to as RSB clans (RuneScape Boards). The older-class clans pre-date Jagex's clan support features, and many had separate forums and websites. For multi-clan communication, these clans based themselves on the forums of popular fansites, and were referred to for whichever they advocated: main ones being RSC clans (Zybez/RuneScape Community), TIF clans (Rune Tips/Tip.It) and RHQ clans (RuneHQ).
It should be noted that while many clan websites and forums are totally harmless, players should still exercise extreme caution.
Clans are a group of players who strive for one or more goals, which vary between the different types of clan. Warring is a big part of the clanning community, as the goal of many PvP clans is to constantly grow in terms of strength, numbers, organisation, and other clan vs clan attributes (These clans who focus on rank-climbing are known as powerhouse clans). Traditional wars often occur at the Clan Wars Arena or the Wilderness. There are many different types of wars - typical varying elements of a war are the clan's Pay-to-Play or Free-to-Play status, member caps and the use of returning (and in some cases time caps).
Clans will often use a ranking scheme within the Clan Chat. This will often mean the General (Gold star) in the clan chat is most probably a leader or higher ranked, more experienced player in the clan compared to a Recruit (One stripe). With a higher rank you may get the ability to kick other players out of the clan chat, which is often used to remove rule-breaking members or spammers. Another feature of a Clan Chat is Lootshare or Coinshare which converts valuable drops from high-level monsters into gold, and splits it respectively to the clan members.
The killing of high level monsters within a clan often means it is a PvM (Player vs Monster) clan - however it is not uncommon for other types of clans such as PvP to host "boss-hunting" trips.
Jagex Clan Support
In recent years, Jagex has recognised the clan world with the introduction of clan support, mainly with in-game features such as the Clan Wars arena and Clan Camp.
- Main article: Clan Chat
Clan Chat, initialised CC, is an in-game feature created by Jagex, based around organisation and communication withing a clan. It requires the registration of the clan in-game, which takes at minimum five players (see Clan Camp). All members in the clan will be displayed and able to speak in the CC while online (there is currently no feature to hide one's self from fellow clanmates), and will be displayed on the clan's on-site member list. The feature is considered a crucial element to clans, and plays a vital role in aspects such as Clan Wars.
The old Clan Chat was renamed to "Friends Chat" with the release of the Clan Camp. It offers similar facilities such as Loot/Coinshare and the ranks system - however there are less restrictions. Interaction with a Friends Chat does not affect one's Clan Chat.
- Main article: Clan Camp
On 12 April 2011 Jagex implemented a game update that added various features to the game to support clans. These features include:
- Officially Recognized Clans
- Unique Clan Names
- A Customizable Clan Cloak
- A Clan Vexillum (Similar to heraldic banners)
- Clan Ranks/Titles
- Official Ranked Clan Wars Support
- An area in which players can visit and retrieve items
- A multiple user Friends Chat to replace the old Clan Chat
- A multiple user Clan Chat that is specifically for official Clan Use
Before the release of Clan Support, clans had to find other ways of supporting themselves. The use of off-site features has always been very popular. Separate forums (and in past years entire websites) are the most common. For real-time communication, chat programs such as IRC (Internet Relay Chat) are used, and for voice communication (a crucial element in PvP and PvM situations), programs like TeamSpeak, Ventrilo, Skype or Mumble are advocated.
It should be noted that players should exercise extreme caution when considering the use of third-party software.
Types of Clans
There many different types of clans that help their members do/achieve different things. The four most prominenent groups are PvP (Player vs Player, or Warring), PvM (Player vs Monster, or Boss-Hunting, Skilling and Community.
- Main article: Warring Clan
A PvP or Warring clan's main focus is combat-based, generally in the Wilderness or Clan Wars. The clans of the PvP clan world have many variations in style and features, and the top clans can mass hundreds of members to a battle and fight for hours on end.
A PvM (Player vs Monster) clan is a group based on killing high-level monsters such as the Corporeal Beast or Nex, a practice commonly known as "boss-hunting". Elite PvM clans are known to have high requirements (such as the use of Overload potions and the Turmoil curse).
A skilling clan is a clan that trains non-combat skills together. They have events where the clan will go to a RuneScape city/location and train a variety of skills that can be found there (e.g. Catherby, Falador, Rogue's Den). Other events include Skill Wars.
These clans are very popular in RuneScape. Community (or Social/Chat) clans are clans of varied (race, gender, nationality) people that join a certain clan to chat. Chat discussions vary from Star Hunting to real-life business (although this is against Jagex rules).
- Main article: Merchanting Clan
A non-combat clan that focuses on playing the market to gain profit from investments in in-game commodities. Historically they were a collaboration of players who attempted to predict natural market shifts and making advantageous investments. They used to be fairly rare, since solo-trading was easier and in some cases more profitable. However, their numbers have gone up dramatically since the introduction of the Grand Exchange.
These second generation merchanting clans (also known as "price manipulation clans") are significantly different than their predecessors. They do not rely on natural market fluctuations to raise and lower prices. Instead they pool their wealth together and buy out the entire stock of a particular item. This is intended to trigger a massive price increase due to the Grand Exchange picking up the increased (albeit artificial) demand. When the increasing price hits a certain mark, the clan sells their items, netting a profit.
An activity clan is a clan of people cooperating in activities. In PvM activities such as Pest Control, this almost always entails winning the game. In PvP activities, however, they often deliberately tie games, which yields fewer points than playing an activity well and winning every time, but is guaranteed and requires little effort. Castle Wars, Stealing Creation and Soul Wars are the most common (safe) activities for clans to play. These types of clans often don't have very many requirements because they are based on fun, instead of winning, as is seen in PvP/Warring Clans.
A questing clan is a clan with the sole purpose of doing quests together. This type of clan is normally very supportive and will have no requirements except for the skills needed to complete quests. These clans are rare to find because once the clan does a quest, they normally don't repeat it.
- Main article: Role-Playing
Role-playing clans, sometimes referred to as RP, is when players within a clan assume the identity of their RuneScape account as if it were real life. Players who role-play often develop non-canonical back-stories and histories for their characters. Many times they assign their character a home town and even an actual home, such as a mostly empty building. They may also assign their character a job whilst in game, dressing and acting as one would act if they really had such a job, sometimes by running personal shops.
Player Owned City clans
- Main article: POC
Player Owned Cities (POCs), sometimes called Player Owned Countries, are a type of Role-Playing clans. Generally, player owned cities claim a certain area of land, ranging from a single city such as Keldagrim or Varrock to entire parts of Gielinor. In this area, the members role-play as though they actually live in the city, hosting events, opening shops, creating jobs, and governing their nation. POCs normally have a home world. In player cities, players generally take on one or more jobs, such as a fisherman, merchant, or warrior, which they do to gain personal wealth while aiding the city. Many cities also have military units and/or guards, which are stationed at entrances or key points of the region to watch for enemies and monitor the flow of visitors. Cities often try to distinguish themselves from clans, emphasizing their role-playing goals over more standard clan activities. The line between city and standard clan, however, is often difficult to distinguish. However some Player Owned Cities do normal clan events like Clan Wars or Castle Wars and do very little Role-Playing. Instead they use their "territory" as a base of operations.
Help Clans are clans dedicated to assisting players with any questions that they might have in game. A common misconception is that these clan are for new players, but they usually accept higher level players wholeheartedly. So as to answer their questions, and/or further the overall knowledge of the clan.
One of the oldest clan events is the clan war. While the Clan Wars Arena (CWA) is one option for wars, many fights are still done in the Wilderness because of tradition. Clan Wars is preferred though because clans can choose custom settings, such as the arena, if food/potions are allowed and even if player lose items upon death (which isn't used unless stakes aren't high). Another noteable feature of the Clan Wars arena is that it prevents interference from a non-participating clan, commonly known as "crashing".
A typical war involves 2 or more clans meeting in a designated location at a designated date and time. The preparation and rules (such as boundaries) can vary, from a short-prep (less than an hour) to up to two or more weeks. The clans will then engage in battle. The definitions of a victory vary depending on the type of war. Usually wars are hosted between two clans (1v1), however in some cases aid can be provided from other clans (typically allies) if agreed upon.
A full-out war is one of the oldest types of fights hosted. Each clan will attempt to pull as many members as they can to the battle. Returning is not allowed in a full-out fight - once a member dies, they are "out", and may only return to watch. The clan who defeats all members of the opposition is declared the winner. In the Clan Wars Arena, a full-out is referred to as a "Knock-out".
A PK Run-In, or PKRI, is one of the more common types of fights, in which players are allowed to return and fight again upon death. A PKRI may have a time limit (cap), usually set between 30 minutes and two hours. If there is no limit (uncapped), the fight will go on until one clan stops returning ("ending") or they have no remaining fighters on the battlefield ("cleared"). The record time for longest PKRI is twenty-four hours between The Titans and Divine Forces.
- Main article: Union#Wars
Union wars (or Ally Wars) are often fought in huge (sometimes 1000s of players) in either Clan Wars or in the Wilderness. They can be organised weeks in advanced between two or more unions which will have many clans in them. These wars can last hours because of the amount of people and are often very publicized within the RuneScape community. Winning a Union war could mean many things including 'ownership' of a particular RuneScape city (Player-Owned city, POC) or just to say that one union is better then another.
These wars do not involve player killing at all, but are instead a race. Clans compete against one another to determine who can gain the most experience or resources in a set amount of time.
Metal wars (also known as "fun wars", though the term does not strictly imply metal) are when clans agree to only wear a certain type of metal (i.e. Bronze, Iron, Steel, Black etc.) and are often carried out in the Wilderness due to tradition. Sometimes clans agree to use a better weapon (such as a Rune scimitar), in order to speed up the kill process. The presence of metal wars has diminished over the years, with more clans seeking out "real" fights - however, they are not extinct entirely.