The Orb of oculus presents a wide variety of new capabilities and challenges to all players, in the creation of screenshots, videos, and even using it on its own for the terrific and new perspectives it provides, including the first-person perspective, which actually has a precedent in early versions of RuneScape.
The orb's in-game behaviour
The Orb is held in two hands, using both the weapon and shield equipment slots, and so is essentially a two-handed weapon. It is notable as having an across-the-board -20 Defence modifier, and any attack upon the player will immediately end the "gaze-into" view, returning the player to the Avatar view. This presents some difficult challenges to using the Orb in a dangerous environment. Much like the use of Mage or Range, the Orb may require the use of the "safe-spotting" technique, when the player stands somewhere he or she can not be attacked, although this is hard to do if the monster in question can use ranged or magic.
Along with that, it may be useful for Player Killing, allowing players to see a potential target from inside a room, or from far away. This, however, is risky because of the -20 defence bonus and also due to the fact that if a player is looking into the orb of oculus at something far away, it is hard, if not impossible, to pay attention to what is going on nearby, giving a PKer an easy kill.
Not only is the Orb of oculus used for making videos, but it is also widely used for taking a closer look at areas which players either cannot access, could access but can no longer do so, or ones which are unrelated to the area the player is currently standing in and are only visited via completely different methods. The Orb can pass through "solid" game objects, walls, characters, players, and even substantial underground "matter". This presents unique opportunities to view areas which may otherwise be inaccessible to the player's avatar at their present location.
When first gazing into the Orb, the view provided is always to the south of the player, approximately 8 squares away, and 9 "squares" above the ground. This is actually 1 square closer in the horizontal than provided by the "avatar view". The Orb can rise as far as 39 "squares" above the level on which the player is standing, and can roam horizontally 30 squares north, south, east, or west, allowing a total "roam" of 60 squares, both in the north-south and east-west axes.
Hiding off-camera and behind objects
As the Orb, as noted, has a great viewing range, it is possible for a player to stand well off-camera, behind a wall or other large object, and gaze into the Orb in such a way as to see far from their location.
The video settings, accessed in-game, can be used to great effect to enhance the view obtained with the Orb. Brightness, lighting detail levels, and screen-size settings can all make a great difference in the view and detail obtained.
Above, two screenshots illustrate the vast differences in image quality, based on the settings used. The shot on the left was made in safety mode, with the smallest screen available, and with character shadows turned on, leaving the image very flat, and with shadows underneath the subject, making it difficult to do transparency work on a properly cropped image. In the second, on the right, the full screen setting, in HD, and with character shadows turned off, gives a far more vibrant image, and the lack of shadows may result in a far better finished product. With greater experimentation, perhaps the ground clutter still remaining could be removed.
Below are two images taken at Varrock Palace, the first with the "Selectively" remove roofs option, and the second set to "Always". This difference creates what seems to be two entirely different pictures, and yet they are taken from the exact same position.
These guides can be used for making images of things in RuneScape. It gives tips about how to make the best images possible.
Familiars and pets
These should all be in HD, obviously, full-screen or re-sizable window, and taken with an orb of oculus. Taking pictures in a Player-owned house makes getting a good shot easier, since the terrain is perfectly flat, thus eliminating any chance of the ground covering up parts of the pet. The grand exchange is also a nice place, as is just about any road. With some pets, even in the player owned house, some covering up can occur, such as with Raccoons. In cases such as this, its best to stand at the top of a steep hill. A perfect spot for this is in Feldip Hills a couple squares south of the AKS fairy ring in this case, due to the ground sloping downwards drastically, it will not cover up parts of the pet.
The angle of the body shot is the most important aspect. Its best to take the picture at a slightly sideways angle. A picture from the front hides much detail about the body, and an image from the side hides a lot of detail about the face. As such an angle between these two extremes is the best by far. The positioning of the pet is also important due to limitations on the orb of oculus. Since the orb can only stop in squares that players can stop in, its best to get the pet to stand diagonally, which allows the orb to get as close as possible and still get a diagonal image, as you can see below:
Once your pet is in position, zoom in on it with the Orb of Oculus. Aim mode is the easiest. Press e to get the point of view low to the ground which gives the best view. Most pets need to be at the lowest or second lowest elevation. If you find that the perfect spot is between two elevations, you can press q then quickly press e which will sometimes stop it between settings. However since the orb of oculus is limited to stopping only on squares, if you find that the perfect shot is between two squares, you must try to get a picture as the oculus is moving between the two squares. It may also help to back away and tilt the camera up or down, though this makes it difficult to keep your character out of the shot, even with careful cropping.
There are different kinds of items. There are flat items, and high items. An example of both is a Teleport tablet and a Dungeoneering toolkit, respectively. To have a good angle on both of the items, you need to use a different method for both styles.
For flat items, you should use the effect of the orb that it faces down if there's a ramp upwards below it. If it would be facing the high side, it faces down. This could be used to get a good angle on the flat item. To make the image, you should first drop the item on the ramp, and then use your orb of oculus to view the high side of the ramp. As your orb faces down then, it will have a good angle on the item. Then you should move the orb down until the item is on the screen as big as possible, and then you have the best quality image.
These are less common. the best angle on these is not a top view but a front view. Therefore, the POH is the best terrain to use, like for the pets treated above. Here you should simply have the orb hover in front of the item, and you have the best quality already (for even bigger images read the Special tricks for size section). Sometimes a side angle is needed, and then the orb could be moved for the best angle. Note that items almost always have the front side to the south.
For monsters there are various methods possible. The first method is attacking a monster and trapping it behind a low obstacle. Then you can get a closer view on it. another method is asking someone to attack it, then stop attacking(turning off Auto Retaliate) and let you have a big image. This is the best method for monsters with long range attacks, if you have a high enough friend prepared to help you. Then for unattackable NPCs there are other methods. The best is either trapping them, if possible, and taking getting the picture. If that is not possible, the best method is very similar to the pets method:
But then replace the pet with the NPC. You could also ask a friend with either a Bone brooch or Easter ring (Ring of stone is also possible, but as it is higher it is less useful) to talk to the NPC, then equip the item and let you make the picture. this will give access to a more frontal shot (Note: It is not always better than a side shot, for example for pets).
For scenery it is a different case for most of the scenery. Buildings are best with a front view, seeing the whole building, smaller scenery like fountains may be preferred to have a birds eye view, etc. It is best to find out yourself what you think is the best angle for the scenery.
Other tips for big images
The orb in squares
The orb of oculus is, like monsters and players, restricted to squares. The orb can't hover between 2 squares. It does have different places per square though. If you move to the square south of where you are currently, you will have your orb viewing from a slightly more northern view than if you would move to the square from the south. This is also the case for all other directions, and if you are moving up or down with the orb. There it is also restricted to certain heights, but it is slightly lower if you move to the height from below than if you move from above. This could be used to have images a little bit bigger. For items that already have a close view on it, it could make the image a lot bigger.
Special tricks for size
Big, detailed images can be taken of everything from items, npcs, or pets in RuneScape. Though when using the orb to view the target (item, NPC, pet, etc) one space away, it does not yield the greatest detail possible. Zooming a square closer to the target results in the camera moving inside the target, or moving past it. To make the image more detailed, take the screenshot between the adjacent and the square with the target, such as making the screenshot the moment the camera moves toward it.
The orb can be used to view many locations that are otherwise out of reach or in an area that should normally be quite far away. Free players can look into members parts of the game and may see some interesting things. Sometimes NPCs are missing while viewing from the orb, this is because NPCs are only viewable if the NPC is currently on your minimap. The orb cannot see into structures that you cannot see on the minimap. For example, the orb cannot see into the tower on the roof of the Al Kharid palace. If a player logs out and logs back in at the very edge of a dungeon area, (such as the Runecrafting altars) the player can then use the Orb to view into futher areas. Players cannot use the Orb in Fist of Guthix, doing so will yield the message: "You cannot use the orb in battle". The orb also cannot be used the orb in the Corporeal Beast's dungeon before you complete Summer's End, doing so will yield the message: "You cannot use the Orb of Oculus here."
Here is a list of discovered hidden locations:
- It is possible to look into the Tutorial Island bank from south of the Wizards Tower but see no bankers.
- When standing in the north-east part of the Blast Furnace and using the Orb of Oculus to look further North, you can see the Candlelight Chapel, which is an old, retired Random event. Strangely, what appears to be the Gravedigger Random Event seems to be located to the west of it. Looking even farther north-east of the chapel, areas from Temple Trekking can also be seen. To the East and West of the Furnace, there are segments of caves from the Eagle's Peak quest.
- One can see a snowy mountain in the place where the Tree Gnome Village is supposed to be, on the top floor of the Watchtower, after completion of the Watchtower Quest, which could possibly be Eagle's Peak.
- The 2005 Christmas event can be seen east of the first room of Pyramid Plunder.
- The agility course from the 2007 Hallowe'en Event can be seen from the very far east of the scarab room at Uzer Mastaba.
- The 2010 Easter event can be seen from barbarian assault.
- When standing at the east side on fourth floor of the Stronghold of Security and looking east, you can see the old TzHaar Theatre which was used for TzHaar-Hur-Brekt's play and still use the old TzHaar City graphic.
- The Draynor Bank Robbery Cutscene area can be seen in Burthorpe Games Room.
- To the south-west of Sophanem's bank, you can see the broken version of the bank, only accessible during Contact! To the far south-east, you can see part of a castle and railings, it appears to be the North side of the castle during the Holy Grail, if you look as far northeast as possible, you can see part of what appears to be the lower floor of Saradomin's Encampment in the God Wars Dungeon. if you look far south-east, you see the Player Moderator room.
- When standing in the southern edge of the lowest part of the Saradomin Encampment, player once can see an underwater area to the south with dead bodies floating around. This was confirmed by a Jagex Moderator to be a place were your character would swim through the lake on the way to Zamorak's Fortress, but was eventually scrapped. This area has been replaced by the Ancient Prison and no longer visible.
- When standing at the far north-east and north-west corners of Bandos's throne room and looking north-east with the orb, you can see a collapsed cave. An un-collapsed version is north of the collapsed one.
- Using the Orb of Oculus and look north of Bandos's Throne Room, it is possible to see into another room. It is an exact copy of Bandos's Throne Room, except that the Bandos Guards block the path to the portal out. It is probably used in The Chosen Commander quest during the portion where you play as Zanik. In that same area, are the two versions of the cave that Zanik and the player teleport to; one of them is normal, the other has the fissure.
- Various locations seen from the Freaky Forester random event, such as the north-west part of the Fisher Realm, for example.
- The Air altar can be seen by going to the far north-west of the Rune essence mine and looking west. The altar can be spotted but the game will push the camera down. A strange ice area can be seen by going to the far south end of the mine and looking south, not resembling any known ice-coated landscapes.
- North of the Earth Altar, You can see a railroad tunnel and a 3 or 4 floored building with lanterns. To the south is a green plane, with some trees to the west, which you can partially see on the mini-map.
- When you're in the fire altar and you use the Orb of Oculus, at the southest point of the altar, you can see the north part of the Freaky Forester random event.
- The Mind altar can be seen if you go in the northwest of the Air Altar. There also seems to be a strip of land to the south of the altar, with nothing on it.
- When you stand at the Body altar, it is possible to see the Law altar to the west and the Fire altar to the east. East of the Fire altar is the Earth altar.
- When at the Cosmic altar and using the orb to see the furthest possible distance east, you can see the Death altar.
- When at the Cosmic Entity's Plane (from Fairytale Partt II - Cure a Queen), it is possible to view the western portal of the Cosmic altar.
- When in the Stronghold of Security on the first floor, when at the nearest edge to the south, using the orb you can see the final battle area from Dream Mentor.
- In the north-west corner of the Dondakan's mine, one can see part the Temple Knight Headquarters testing area used in the Recruitment Drive quest, some areas used for Temple Trekking and the Miscellania dungeon lift.
- From the basement of the Black Knights' Fortress, one can see the court used for Court Cases to the west, the prison area used during the King's Ransom quest to the east, where Merlin and the knights were, and are still, kept.
- West of the Edgeville dungeon Black Demons you can see under the Black Knights' Fortress from the quest While Guthix Sleeps.
- When using the orb in the Box you can hide in near the Candle maker's shop in Catherby you can see the fire obelisk and the icy area of the Temple of Ikov quest.
- There appears to be the building from the Ratcatchers quest that your character sneaks into just outside the Varrock Rat Pits.
- The Mogre Camp from Recipe for Disaster can be seen by going to the southwest end of the Asgarnian Ice Dungeon at the muggers and looking south. The blue hue from the water cannot be seen. Some coral reefs can be seen without the orb. This can also be seen from the dungeon near the Shaikahan on east Karamja.
- Northwest of the first floor of the Stronghold of Security, the orb that activates the Dragon forge is visible.
- When standing in the Northeast corner of the first floor of the Stronghold of Security, you can see a part of the elemental workshop.
- When standing north in the Summer Garden while playing the activity Sorceress's Garden you can see the edge of Clan Wars.
- When looking south-west from the Keldagrim rat pits, you can see part of the Temple of Light which plays a major role in the Mourning's Ends Part II quest as well as the Within the Light quest.
- When standing on the west side of the basement of Summer's Farm, you can see into the Spirit Realm portion of the Forgotten Cemetery. South of the Forgotten Cemetery you can see the Goblin Temple from Land of the Goblins.
- When standing in the south-eastern part of the Polar Eagle Lair, you can see the Brine Rat Cavern, and the latter is close enough to be seen on the minimap.
- When standing on the north side of the Spirit Realm version of the Western Ruins, you can see the Abandoned Mine.
- Northwest of the first room of Pyramid Plunder is the Dragonkin Castle.
- When standing in Evil Dave's basement and look west you can see the Sacred Forge, the chest containing the map piece used in the Dragon Slayer quest is to the south west.
- The Dwarven Mines can be seen by looking northwest in the basement of Draynor Manor.
- When standing in the Draynor Sewers, the H.A.M. base is to the east, the Artisans Workshop basement is to the north west, and the training room where you fight the Leprechaun Champion beneath the Champion's Guild is to the north.
- In the basement of Hetty's house, looking north, one can see The Lair of Tarn Razorlor.
- In the second story of the Black Knights' Catacombs, immediately to the left is basement of goblin village, to the right a cavern. If you go future into the catacomb, before crossing the east bridge, it is possible to see below Evil Dave's House to the East, along with the Edgeville Dungeon.
- If you look to the north west of the pick-axe machiene in the Dwarven Mine, you will see the blown-up version of goblin village basement, versus the non-blown up viewed from the Black Knights' Catacombs. However, the reverse does not seem to be true, as nothing can be viewed from the goblin basement after the Goblin Cook's part in Recipe for Diaster.
- Many areas of the Troll Stronghold have disconnected rooms of similar cave structures. These are most likely segments used in cutscenes, or possibly part of a future update.
- To the east of the underground portion of the Shilo Village mining site, a portion of the Ah Za Rhoon Temple dungeon, from the Shilo Village quest, can be seen.
- Northwest of the interior of Baba Yaga's house is part of the Kharazi Dungeon (you can see a blue shimmering portal; the door that needs the Heart crystal).
- In the dark room in the Temple of Ikov with the Boots of Lightness, there are two separate rooms, the illuminated room and the dark room can both be seen when in the other room when using the orb.
- The basement of the Witch's House can be seen from the Fountain of Heroes.
- A copy of the Lighthouse entered during the Horror from the Deep quest can be seen from Baba Yaga's house.
- When near the Jubster altar in the Creature Creation dungeon, you can see what looks like the Pollnivneach Slayer Dungeon.
- As soon as you enter the Lumbridge Catacombs, to the South can be found Draynor, or rather a copy possibly for the cutscene of a quest. Should you go down to the second level of the catacombs (level before monsters) and look south before the stairs going down, you should see another copy of Draynor.
Discontinued viewing areas
Before an update after the Orb was released, it was possible to use the orb in areas such as Random Events. This is now impossible to do; it was done by entering a event, logging out, then logging in, this glitches the tabs letting you use the worn tab, allowing you to use the orb.