Runecrafting is a free-to-play skill that revolves around the creation and siphoning of runes for use in the Magic skill. Before the release of RuneSpan in May of 2012, Runecrafting was considered as one of the slowest and hardest 99 skills to achieve, having one of the lowest number of people at level 99. Runecrafting has also always been a very profitable skill, as many of the higher level runes are worth a large number of coins.


Essence is converted into runes at altars around Gielinor. There are two types of essence, rune and pure.

Rune Essence

Regular essence can be mined by anyone if they've done the quest, but only has the capability of being made into air, mind, water, earth, fire, and body runes.

Pure Essence

Pure essence can only be mined on a members server, and requires 30 mining. Pure essence can be made into any rune and is needed for the higher level runes.

In order to gain essence you need to mine it, or trade it with players. There are there other methods of obtaining essence however these are the fastest.

You can access the essence mine at these locations

  • Wizard Sedridor - In the Wizard's Tower, south of Draynor Village.
  • Aubury - Varrock Rune Shop
  • Members: Wizard Cromperty - North-east of Ardougne's marketplace
  • Members: Wizard Distentor - Yanille Magic Guild (66 magic needed)
  • Members: Brimstail - Gnome Stronghold, in his cave on the west side

There is also a Pure Essence Mine found in a cave east of Livid Farm on Lunar Isle. The entrance is guarded by Suqah's, however, so being a higher level is strongly advised.


Runes are the result of crafting essence at a particular altar to return a rune or set of runes. Each rune has a different icon in your inventory and as you progress through the levels the experience you gain from runes increases.

Standard Runes

Rune Level Experience per essence Ingredients F2P/P2P
Air Rune Icon
Air rune
1 5 Rune or Pure essence
Mind Rune Icon
Mind rune
1 5.5 Rune or Pure essence
Water Rune Icon
Water rune
5 6 Rune or Pure essence
Earth Rune Icon
Earth rune
9 6.5 Rune or Pure essence
Fire Rune Icon
Fire rune
14 7 Rune or Pure essence
Body Rune Icon
Body rune
20 7.5 Rune or Pure essence
Cosmic Rune Icon
Cosmic rune
27 8 Pure essence
Chaos Rune Icon
Chaos rune
35 8.5 Pure essence
Astral Rune Icon
Astral rune
40 8.7 Pure essence
Nature Rune Icon
Nature rune
44 9 Pure essence
Law Rune Icon
Law rune
54 9.5 Pure essence
Death Rune Icon
Death rune
65 10 Pure essence
Armadyl Rune Icon
Armadyl rune
72 10 Pure essence and Dust of Armadyl
Blood Rune Icon
Blood rune
77 10.5 Pure essence
Soul Rune Icon
Soul Rune*
N/A 11 Pure essence

* Soul Runes can only be crafted at the Ourania Altar and as such don't have a required runecrafting level.

Multiple Runes

As your Runecrafting level increases you will be able to create multiple runes from a single piece of essence at certain altars. The table below gives the levels at which you can create multiple runes and how many of each as a minimum. There is a potential chance of creating more runes that the table below shows.

Your experience per essence stays the same and is not based on how many runes are created.

Rune x2 x3 x4 x5 x6 x7 x8 x9 x10
Air Rune Icon
Air rune
11 22 33 44 55 66 77 88 99
Mind Rune Icon
Mind rune
14 28 42 56 70 84 98 - -
Water Rune Icon
Water rune
19 38 57 76 95 - - - -
Earth Rune Icon
Earth rune
26 52 78 - - - - - -
Fire Rune Icon
Fire rune
35 70 - - - - - - -
Body Rune Icon
Body rune
46 92 - - - - - - -
Cosmic Rune Icon
Cosmic rune
59 - - - - - - - -
Chaos Rune Icon
Chaos rune
74 - - - - - - - -
Astral Rune Icon
Astral rune
82 - - - - - - - -
Nature Rune Icon
Nature rune
91 - - - - - - - -
Law Rune Icon
Law rune
- - - - - - - - -
Death Rune Icon
Death rune
- - - - - - - - -
Blood Rune Icon
Blood rune
- - - - - - - - -

Combination Runes

Combination runes are created using a talisman and equal combinations of the opposite rune and pure essence. This allows you to create a rune that holds the power of both elements. Below is a list of the elements each rune represents. There is a 50% chance that the runes won't be created, there are however ways to get around this, such as using a Necklace of binding, or the Lunar spell Magic imbue.

  • Mist: Air & Water
  • Dust: Air & Earth
  • Mud: Water & Earth
  • Smoke: Air & Fire
  • Steam: Water & Fire
  • Lava: Earth & Fire

When creating the runes the talisman is used up and the essence and the runes are converted into the combination runes.

Rune Level
Combination method 1 Combination method 2 Experience Gained
Method 1 Method 2
Mist Rune Icon
Mist rune
6 Water combined at air altar Air combined at water altar 8.0 8.5
Dust Rune Icon
Dust rune
10 Earth combined at air altar Air combined at earth altar 8.3 9.0
Mud Rune Icon
Mud rune
13 Earth combined at water altar Water combined at earth altar 9.3 9.5
Smoke Rune Icon
Smoke rune
15 Fire combined at air altar Air combined at fire altar 8.5 9.5
Steam Rune Icon
Steam rune
19 Fire combined at water altar Water combined at fire altar 9.5 10.0
Lava Rune Icon
Lava rune
23 Fire combined at earth altar Earth combined at fire altar 10.0 10.5


After mining your rune essence, you then need to take it to the rune altar of your choice. To access most, you'll need to possess a talisman or tiara. Using a talisman is simple, "use" it on the altar, and you will magically appear inside. Here's where to find them:

Talisman Where to get the talisman F2P/P2P

Air talisman
Dropped by goblins, wizards and creatures in the Abyss

Mind talisman
Dropped by imps, wizards, dark wizards, Yanille tower guards, Colonel Radick and creatures in the Abyss

Water talisman
Dropped by wizards, giant frogs, dark wizards and creatures in the Abyss

Earth talisman
Dropped by women, men, wizards, dark wizards, Al Kharid warriors, rogues, vampyres, lesser demons, greater demons and creatures in the Abyss

Fire talisman
Dropped by guards, wizards, unarmed skeletons, dark wizards and creatures in the Abyss

Body talisman
Dropped by guards, wizards, dark wizards, giants and creatures in the Abyss

Cosmic talisman
Rarely dropped by high level monsters and creatures in the Abyss

Chaos talisman
Dropped by hobgoblins, skeletons, ice warriors, shadow warriors, lesser demons, hill giants, fire giants and creatures in the Abyss

Nature talisman
Dropped by hobgoblins, jogres, moss giants, green dragons, zombies and creatures in the Abyss

Law talisman
Dropped by battle tortoises, terrorbirds, ghouls, guards, paladins and creatures in the Abyss

Death talisman
Obtained after completing Mourning's End Part II, dropped by dark beasts

Blood talisman
You find a blood talisman during Legacy of Seergaze

Elemental talisman
Dropped by creatures in the Abyss

Omni talisman
Obtained by showing all 12 regular talismans or tiaras to Wizard Elriss in the runecrafting guild.


Tiaras are quite similar to talismans, but they can be worn upon your head, effectively saving an inventory space. Whilst one is on your head, you can go into the corresponding altar by left-clicking it.

Tiara How to craft Experience gained F2P/P2P

Air tiara
Use an air talisman and a tiara on the Air Altar 25

Mind tiara
Use a mind talisman and a tiara on the Mind Altar 27.5

Water tiara*
Use a water talisman and a tiara on the Water Altar 30

Earth tiara
Use a earth talisman and tiara on the Earth Altar 32.5

Fire tiara
Use a fire talisman and tiara on the Fire Altar 35

Body tiara
Use a body talisman and tiara on the Body Altar 37.5

Cosmic tiara
Use a cosmic talisman and tiara on the Cosmic Altar 40

Chaos tiara
Use a chaos talisman and tiara on the Chaos Altar 42.5

Nature tiara
Use a nature talisman and tiara on the Nature Altar 45

Law tiara
Use a law talisman and tiara on the Law Altar 47.5

Death tiara
Use a death talisman and tiara on the Death Altar 50

Blood tiara
Use a blood talisman and tiara on the Blood Altar 52.5

Omni tiara
Created by talking to Wizard Korvak while having an Omni talisman and tiara. 52.5

*The Water Tiara can be infused with water runes to protect against heat in the desert after completion of the Dealing with Scabaras quest.


Players can use altars to turn blank rune essence into Runes by binding the energies of the altar into the runestone. Tiaras, Talismans or Talisman staves are needed to enter altars hidden inside 'Mysterious ruins'.

Air Altar Mind Altar
West of Varrock, near Siguard the canoe maker North of Falador, west of the Ice Mountain
Water Altar Earth Altar
Lumbridge Swamp, South East of Lumbridge Swamp Dungeon entrance North-east of Varrock, near the Jolly Boar Inn
Fire Altar Body Altar
North of Al Kharid, west of the Duel Arena South of the Monastery, between Barbarian Village and the Dwarven Mine
Cosmic Altar Chaos Altar*
Inside Zanaris, The Lost City. South-east of the bank at the end of the twisting passage North of Edgeville in the Wilderness, south of the Dark Warriors' Fortress. You will need to proceed through a maze
Astral Altar Nature Altar
South-east area of Lunar Isle, reached on the Lunar Diplomacy quest South-east of Tai Bwo Wannai Village, north of Shilo Village on Karamja Island
Law Altar Death Altar
North-east Entrana Deep inside the Temple of Light
Blood Altar
Beneath Castle Drakan, reached during Legacy of Seergaze

* You will be able to take a safe route through a tunnel to the chaos altar if you have completed the quest What Lies Below.

Ourania Altar

The Ourania altar, also known as the ZMI altar (Zamorakian Mages Institute), has extremely unique properties, either because it is damaged, or if it was intended to work in the way it does.

The altar has no level requirement and isn't limited to only one kind of rune. Unlike other altars it randomly generates all runes at double the experience you'd usually get for each rune. Although the higher your runecrafting level, the more likely you are to produce higher level runes.

The Ourania altar is located underground, west of the gnome battlefield.

In the Ourania cave, there are two routes from the enterance to the altar. The short route is packed with agressive Zamorakian foes. The long route is a twisting path to the altar, but is safe.

By the enterance is a banker who will allow you to use the bank for 20 of any rune each time you wish to bank.

There's an alternative method to banking which involves the lunar spell book. After creating your runes you can use the lunar teleport (requires 69 magic, 2 earth runes, 2 astral runes and 1 law rune) and use the bank on the Lunar Isle then teleport back to the Ourania cave with the Ourania teleport (requires 71 magic, 6 earth runes, 2 astral runes and 1 law rune).

If taking the short route it is recomended to wear lightweight armour such as dragonhide.


After doing a short mini-quest for a Mage of Zamorak, you'll unlock one of the fastest ways to Runecrafting. At the source of the River Lum, north of Edgeville, in level 5 wilderness, is a mage who has uncovered the ability to teleport adventurers to the Abyss.

En route to the mage that resides there, there may be PKers who try to kill you, so dragonhide is advised. Having a pickaxe or hatchet on your toolbelt is advised for what lies inside the Abyss.

Once you right-click the mage and choose to teleport, your prayer will be drained and you will enter the Abyss.

On Old School RuneScape, an abyssal bracelet (enchanted from diamond) can be used to prevent being skulled. It has 5 charges.

Many dangerous abyssal creatures roam the outer ring of the abyss, willing to attack anybody that enters. If you strangely decide to kill them, you'll find that they have a range of runecrafting-related drops, but most notably; pouches!

You will already have a small one as a reward from the mini-quest, another neat way to get these pouches is to buy them from Wizard Korvak in the Runecrafting Guild. They have the ability to hold essence inside.

  • Small pouch: 1 runecrafting needed; holds 3 essence.
  • Medium pouch: 25 runecrafting needed; holds 6 essence.
  • Large pouch: 50 runecrafting needed; holds 9 essence.
  • Giant pouch: 75 runecrafting needed; holds 12 essence.

Back on subject, while you're in the outer ring being bashed out by abyssal creatures, there are several methods of reaching safety at the inner ring. These obstacles are marked as green on the image from earlier.

  • Firemaking: Burn the boil, tinderbox needed. This isn't generally used.
  • Woodcutting: Chop the tendrils, woodcutting axe needed. Be sure to wield it.
  • Mining: Mine the rocks, pickaxe needed. Again, wield the pickaxe.
  • Thieving Distract the eyes, no items needed.
  • Agility: Squeeze through the gap, no items needed.

At the inner ring, there are one-way rifts to each rune altar, including the soul rift which does not yet exist. (However, there is no astral rift, nor an Ourania one.)

Because the rifts are one-way, a glory amulet is used by the majority of abyss crafters to teleport back to Edgeville.

At the centre of the inner ring is the Dark Mage. Pouches will begin to degrade after frequent use, and he is able to fix them.

Note that you do not have to bring your pouches with you for him to fix them.

For more information about the abyss see the location guide.


Great Orb Project

The Great Orb Project is also known as the Runecrafting guild. It is for both free to play and pay to play. To access this area you will need 50 Runecrafting. You can find the Runecrafting guild on the second floor of the Wizard's tower south of Draynor Village, there is a portal in a wall that will take you there.

The aim of the game is for two teams to battle it out to capture their related orbs, green or yellow. There are several rounds per game at various altars, in members there are a few more altars to do per game. At the end of each round, essence is given to players so they can craft runes on those altars and gain some runecrafting XP while they play.

During the minigame, all XP earned from the various altars is doubled.

You can find out more about this activity by taking a look at our Great Orb Project guide.


The RuneSpan is a Runecrafting training method released on the 30th April 2012, requiring players to siphon runic energy from creatures that explore the area or random spawning nodes. Doing so will award you will Runecrafting experience that was designed to be the best in the game overtaking the ZMI (Zamorak Mage Institute).

The RuneSpan is a safe activity. There is nothing to kill you in the RuneSpan, unless you are poisoned. Gravestones will appear as normal incase of death, but runes made in the RuneSpan will automatically be converted into points for you when you leave which can be used to purchase rewards from Wizard Finix's shop outside the RuneSpan portal.

Our RuneSpan Guide can be found here.

Runecrafting in Daemonheim

In Daemonheim Runecrafting is not only used to create various runes. But also used to empower staves or wands to make them more powerful.

Creating Runes

Making runes in Daemonheim is very similair to making runes on the surface. The differences are that you can create all runes on any altar you find in the dungeons. The amount of XP gained is also drastically lower and rune essence is stackable in Daemonheim. It is possible to make multiple runes in Daemonheim as well. This requires the same level as on the surface.

Rune Level Required XP Gained per 10 essence F2P/P2P

Air rune
1 1.0

Mind rune
2 1.1

Water rune
5 1.2

Earth rune
9 1.3

Fire rune
14 1.4

Body rune
20 1.5

Cosmic rune
27 1.6

Chaos rune
35 1.7

Astral rune
40 1.74

Nature rune
44 1.8

Law rune
54 1.9

Death rune
65 2.0

Blood rune
77 2.1

Empowering Items

In Daemonheim it's possible to empower simple wooden staves, wands and regular orbs to create more powerful Catalytic items. These Catalytic items will provide all elemental runes when wielded.

Type Item Level Required Xp Gained Lowest Item Needed F2P/P2P
Catalytic staff
50 39.5
Runecrafting icon

Spinebeam staff

Empowered catalytic staff
99 106
Runecrafting icon

Grave creeper staff
Catalytic wand
50 39.5
Runecrafting icon

Spinebeam wand

Empowered catalytic wand
99 106
Runecrafting icon

Grave creeper wand
Catalytic orb
50 39.5
Runecrafting icon

Bryll orb

Empowered catalytic orb
99 106
Runecrafting icon

Spiritbloom orb

Skill Mastery

Once you have finally reached level 99 in the skill, you can travel to the Runecrafting Guild, accessed from the top of the Wizards' Tower, and purchase the Runecrafting Skillcape from Larriar for 99,000 coins. This will enable you to use a boost that raises your Runecrafting level to 100 and also allows you to perform the Runecrafting Skillcape Emote. The cape itself is members only. However, free players can still perform the emote granted they are wearing the cape.

If Runecrafting is your first skill to reach level 99, you will be rewarded the Runecraft cape. However, if you have other skills at level 99, you will be awarded the Runecraft cape (t). If you have the untrimmed version of the cape and achieve level 99 in another skill, the cape will become trimmed automatically.

Runecraft cape Runecraft cape (t) Runecraft master cape

Guide Made by: Doctor Shemp
Corrections submitted by: Doctor Shemp, Simon, Jei, Lord Arma, Crayonz, Dark, Vanilla990, Perseus Pyro, JoshUK, Majinvegito3, Jacob, Power of Five, Valerie, Sytze, Umbra, SkillrzUnite, Philby25