Mages, or wizards, are players in RuneScape who mainly use magic for combat, though a wizard is a more commonly used name for a NPC. Their magic can also be used for alchemy, smithing, and other skills. A mage generally wears robes and carries a magical staff with them. Mages are strong against warriors, as warriors' armour conducts magic, but are weak against rangers, whose dragonhide armour can absorb magic attacks, and whose arrows can easily pierce mages' robes.
When casting spells, mages use different kinds of runes, which are magically charged stones that are used up when a spell is cast. There is also a kind of mage referred to as a pure mage - mages that only raise their magic level - but in 2008 this became less popular as runes became more expensive.
Throughout Runescape you can find three main types of magic, the modern magics, lunar magics, and ancient magics. The ancient magics can only be unlocked by the completion of the Desert Treasure quest. The Lunar magics spell book can only be accessed by the completion of the Lunar Diplomacy quest. Though spells in all three books are useful a player may only use one of the spellbooks at a time.
Magic armour includes, but is not limited to:
- Wizard robes - This is the most popular robes for Free-to-play.
- Combat robes - This is a popular degradable set of Free-to-play robes and is often used by higher level mages in those worlds.
- Druidic mage robes - This is another popular set of Free-to-play robes and has slightly weaker stats as the Combat Robes, yet it looks different and is cheaper than the Combat robes in the Grand Exchange. It is also used by higher level mages in F2P worlds.
- Anti-dragon shield - Colour matches Warlock/Witch robes and the shield also has a magic bonus, often used in Free-to-play.
- Warlock/Witch set - Given to the player during the 2008 Halloween event. Warlock set is for male player characters, Witch set is for female player characters. Often used in Free-to-play. Note that the sets give no stat bonuses whatsoever, they are purely for looks.
- Mystic robes - Popular with medium- to high-level mages, due to its relatively low cost.
- Ahrim's robes - Popular with high-level mages, especially in Player-Versus-Player combat.
- Splitbark armour - Useful for medium-level mages who like to use close combat mixed with magic, as this armour gives improved defence to melee attacks, but gives no defence to ranged attacks.
- Arcane spirit shield - Gives the highest magic attack bonus of any shield slot item.
- Runecrafting robes - Gives less bonuses than Fist of Guthix items but they do not degrade over time and are available for f2p
- Void Knight equipment (with the void mage helm) - Gives plus 30% accuracy bonus.
Magic weaponry includes, but is not limited to:
- Staff - A basic staff.
- Magic staff - Sometimes used by amateur mages.
- Elemental staves - Very popular, due to the ability to provide infinite runes of its type.
- Elemental Battlestaves and Mystic staves - Battlestaves give improved melee combat abilities, and also give infinite runes of their type. Mystic staves give even better melee combat abilities.
- God staves - Somewhat popular due to the fact that they are the only staves that can cast the God spells, save the Void knight mace.
- Void knight mace - Not as popular as other staves, since players prefer to buy the armour for its bonuses. The mace is good in melee (roughly the same as a Rune mace), and it gives a 10% magic damage bonus.
- Wands - Popular among mages striving for the highest magic attack bonus and they give a 10% magic damage bonus.
- Staff of light - One of the most powerful magic weapons in the game, with a +15% magic damage bonus, an anti-melee special attack, and a 1/8 chance saving all runes used for a combat spell.
- Gravite or Chaotic staves - Degradable staves that are commonly used in PvP due to their high stats, but are expensive to recharge.
- Air Rune - One of the four basic elemental runes, used in a majority of combat spells.
- Water Rune - One of the four basic elemental runes, used mostly for water combat spells.
- Earth Rune - One of the four basic elemental runes, used mostly for earth combat spells.
- Fire Rune - One of the four basic elemental runes, used mostly for fire combat spells.
- Mind Rune - Used for the basic level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire strike as well as Magic Dart.
- Chaos Rune - Used for lower level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire bolt and the Crumble Undead spell.
- Death Rune - Used for medium level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire blast and also used in the advanced level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire surge.
- Blood Rune - Used for the high level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire wave and also used in the advanced level combat spells air, water, earth, and fire surge, blood runes are used in the claws of guthix, flames of zamorak, and saradomin strike spells.
- Body rune - Used in spells that directly effect ones and skills, the spells weaken, and curse used body runes.
- Soul Rune - Used in spells that directly effect ones and skills, the spells vunerability, enfeeble, stun, and all of the tele-other spells use soul runes.
- Nature Rune - Used in spells that directly effect ones body and used in alchemy spells, the spells bones to bananas, bind, low level alchemy, superheat item, snare, high level alchemy, bones to peaches, and entangle all use nature runes.
- Law Rune - Used in all teleport and tele-other spells, also used in the tele-grab spell.
- Cosmic Rune - Used in all spells that enchant other items, the jewellery enchant spells, and the charge orb spells.
- Astral Rune - Used only after the quest Lunar Diplomacy and is needed for all lunar spells.
- Armadyl rune - Used only after the quest Ritual of the Mahjarrat and used only to cast Storm of Armadyl
- Jack, the first mage in Gielinor, founded the Wizards' guild. He is seen and interacted with in the quest Meeting History.
- The Mage Class is the least used class because of the price of runes. It's even less popular nowadays because the combat triangle is unbalanced, partially with Ranged but mainly with Mages. Plus it is easier for adventurers training prayer to defeat Mages as the Protect From Magic is the protection prayer that requires the least Prayer level of all of them (excluding Protection From Summoning). However, ancient mages using ice spells (the most popular one being Ice Barrage) are a constant annoyance in PvP and PvP activities, such as Soul Wars. Whereas PvM rarely sees a combat mage.