Beneath Cursed Sands
|Beneath Cursed Sands (#153)|
|Released||27 April 2022 (Update)|
|Quest series||Kharidian, #4|
|Lead developer(s)||Mod Ed|
Beneath Cursed Sands is the fourth quest in the Desert quest series, and is intended to introduce players to the lore surrounding Tombs of Amascut, the third raid. The quest added the Ruins of Ullek and the Necropolis to the south-eastern Kharidian Desert.
Details[edit | edit source]
|Start point||Speak to Jamila at her stall in Sophanem. Show on map|
|Description||When Sophanem was beset by a series of plagues, the gates to the golden city of Menaphos quickly closed. The city has been locked down ever since, with no one allowed to leave or enter. However, rumours have escaped of strange happenings inside Menaphos and there are stories of citizens mysteriously disappearing. These odd happenings need to be investigated, but few are willing to do so. Maisa, a spy from Al Kharid, has grown tired of inaction. She is determined to solve this mystery herself, but she won't be able to do it alone... are you up for the challenge?|
|Enemies to defeat|
Walkthrough[edit | edit source]
Entranced Menaphites[edit | edit source]
Items recommended: Stamina potion, Pharaoh's sceptre, a means to combat desert heat
Talk to Jamila in Sophanem ( icon on the minimap). She will tell you that she has an exclusive item from her shop for you as thanks for helping the people of Sophanem; agree to begin the quest. As she tries fitting the item, a gold ring, on your finger, she will sneakily give you a message and proceed to tell you the ring is too small for you, acting as if nothing had happened. Read the message to find out that the sender wishes to meet you at a campsite by the cliffs east of the city.
Make your way to the campsite, which is directly north of the small mining site by the cliffs. Here, you will find that Maisa, a spy from Al Kharid you met during the Contact! quest, was the one who asked for you. She will tell you that citizens from Menaphos have been bypassing the quarantine of the city and excavating the old necropolis south of Sophanem. In addition, upon visiting the necropolis, she found the behaviour of the citizens to be unusual. She will ask you to come with her there; agree to do so, and a cutscene will play.
After the cutscene, you'll appear at the necropolis. You will see many citizens and Menaphite Guards excavating the area. If you have the Pharaoh's sceptre with you, you can commune with the obelisk directly north of the necropolis mine to allow teleportation back here, via the "Jaltevas" teleport option on the sceptre.
Head to the Jaltevas Pyramid south-east, and inspect the blocked entry. After that, talk to a citizen or Menaphite Guard, and a cutscene will play, where the Head Menaphite Guard and two Menaphite Guards will confront you. Maisa will instantly kill one Menaphite Guard, and begins fighting the other. Meanwhile, you will fight the Head Menaphite Guard.
The Head Menaphite Guard will attack with melee and can deal up to 16 damage. Do not use any overhead protection prayers as he will otherwise yelland damage you for 33% of your Hitpoints level.
After defeating him, he will snap out of his trance and tell you and Maisa that Amascut was responsible for hypnotising the Menaphites and unblocking the tomb in the Jaltevas Pyramid and that she is currently inside. He will also tell you that scabarites assisted her and that they came from some ruins to the north-east. Maisa will then ask you to head back to her camp.
The Ruins of Ullek[edit | edit source]
Items recommended: A means to cure/prevent poison and desert heat, food and a stamina potion
Talk to Maisa at the camp, and she'll ask that you explore the cliffs in order to find the scabarites, while she figures out how to re-enter Menaphos. Make sure you finish the conversation with her, or you will not be able to progress to the next part. If you do not have a tinderbox for later, you can search the camping equipment by the tent to get one. A spade can also be found at the north side of the campsite.
From the campsite, head south and then to the east, around the cliffs, where you will find a set of stairs to the Ruins of Ullek. Make your way towards the furnace next to the well. Use the coal and tinderbox on the furnace to ignite it. Next, search the well for a stone tablet and read it. The message indicates a hidden chest buried in the southernmost ritual pillar found down and south-west of the climbing steps. Dig there to receive the aforementioned chest. The passcode to the chest, which is deciphered from the numerical order of the letters of the alphabet in the name "Akhem", is 1118513. The chest will contain a scarab mould.
With the scarab mould and iron bar, go back to the furnace and make an iron scarab emblem. Then, head north and inspect the pillar in front of the stairway to insert the emblem. An interface will open up to rotate the emblem; rotate the scarab on it until it faces down. The entryway will now be unlocked. Climb down the stairs, and you will be attacked by two Scarab Mages. These attack much quicker than their normal counterparts, so Protect from Magic is recommended. Shortly after beginning the fight a Scarab swarm will also spawn attacking with rapid, but weak melee attacks, also being able to inflict poison. The swarm can be ignored as they will die when the mages are killed. Upon defeating the two mages, climb down the stairs.
Riddle of the Tomb[edit | edit source]
After killing both Scarab mages, take one of the two stairs down and then follow the green arrows to the southern lever to activate it. Once the first lever is activated quickly run along the red lines to pull the other lever. You must hit both levers within 60 seconds to continue to the next area. If you are hit by the projectiles fired down the hallways by the Tomb walls, you will be stunned and take up to 10 damage.
Note that if you die during this portion, you may find that your first time successfully pulling the levers won't unlock the door; simply pull them again within 60 seconds of each other to fix this.
Return to the junction and enter through the previously locked door. Inspect the south-western plaque and you will find four emblems depicting a human, scarab, crocodile, and baboon. The emblems need to be put into the urns in the correct order; a plaque to the north-west, will give a riddle, hinting of the order where each emblem is to be placed.
The order of urns is randomised, but doesn't change if you leave the tomb and come back. To solve the riddle, use the table below and place the emblems in the urns that correspond to the following:
- "To the one that arrived first, he offered item 1." – Place the emblem corresponding to item 1 in the centre-south urn.
- "The one that was offered item 2 came from just south..." – Place the emblem corresponding to item 2 in the southernmost urn.
- "The god 1 arrived just before the god 2..." – Place the emblem corresponding to god 1 in the northernmost urn and the emblem corresponding to god 2 in the centre-north urn.
Once you have put the emblems into their correct urns, pull the lever to the south-west and continue to the next area. If the emblems are in the wrong order when pulling the lever, you will take high damage, be poisoned, and have your stats temporarily decreased. However, the riddle will not be reset, so you can just try again if needed.
Speak with the spirit, who reveals himself to be Mehhar, the son of Osmumten. He will reveal that the pyramid at the necropolis is the tomb of Osmumten, and that the divine weapons buried with him inside are likely what Amascut is seeking. He will also offer some insight on the history of the Kharidian Desert during the Second Age.
Lastly, he will ask that you free the High Priest of Scabaras from Amascut's influence by way of an incantation. You do not need to record the incantation, as your character remembers it automatically. Afterwards, search the urn at the back of the room to obtain a rusty key.
The Champion of Scabaras[edit | edit source]
Return to the upper level of the dungeon and be prepared to fight a level 379 boss - the Champion of Scabaras. The champion is highly resistant to magic, and fairly resistant against melee; as such, ranged is recommended for this fight. Bringing a stamina potion and some form of antipoison is advised.
When ready, unlock the door upstairs to begin the fight. The door leading to the Champion of Scabaras stays unlocked after using the rusty key, even if the player leaves the combat area by teleports or death. If players die during the fight, their gravestone will be found by the tomb's entrance on the surface.
The Champion[edit | edit source]
It is advised to pray Protect from Magic throughout the fight, and stay out of melee range of the Champion to avoid its shadow burst. Moving in a rectangular path around the walls of the room with Longrange ranged attacks is highly effective for keeping distance.
The Champion of Scabaras will attack with magical shadow attacks and melee up close. After several normal attacks, it will use one of three special attacks.
Players should kill the Shadow Rift and scarab swarms when they appear, but the first priority should always be maintaining distance from the Champion. If using a crossbow, both enchanted ruby and diamond bolts are very useful due to their special effects. Crossbows are recommended over lower accuracy weapons such as the toxic blowpipe, due to the Champion's high defence.
Special Attacks[edit | edit source]
- Shadow Burst - The Champion will cast a shadow beneath itself, then proceed to send out a burst of shadow magic. This has a reach of 4 tiles, and can hit over 40 damage multiple times (less if further away from the champion). It is advised to stay out of melee range of the Champion throughout the fight to avoid this attack, as he cannot be frozen due to his magic immunity.
- Shadow Rift - The Champion will shout Shadow Rift within the arena. The rift has 20 Hitpoints and will explode after a few seconds, dealing 35+ damage regardless of distance from it, so it is recommended to quickly destroy it. and summon a
- Shadow Flames - The Champion will shout scarab swarm will appear. The swarm has 5 Hitpoints and leaves dark fire in its path, which will hurt when stood upon. It is advised to kill the swarm as fast as possible as the fire will linger and hinder movement if left unattended. and a poisonous
After defeating the Champion, speak to the High Priest of Scabaras. You will free him from Amascut's influence, and he will reveal that with their help, Amascut has captured the lesser gods and brought them into Osmumten's tomb. He will also tell you that the Pharaoh is also being controlled by Amascut, and that she needed the city to be quarantined for reasons unknown. Lastly, he admits to releasing locusts and frogs, as well as the poisoning of the cows, though he is unaware of the pox infections.
Cure Me Pox[edit | edit source]
After speaking to the High Priest of Scabaras, head to Zahur's shop in Nardah, directly south of the fountain. She and Maisa will tell you that the pox originates from the bark of a cadavaberry bush and that it can be easily treated. You will corroborate this with your discoveries in the Ruins of Ullek, and you will be asked to retrieve a Lily of the Elid for the pox cure, which can be found on an island west of Nardah while Maisa goes to collect the scarab poison needed. If you don't already have raw beef or cooked meat, purchase one from the Nardah General Store as you'll need it shortly.
Head west until you reach the River Elid and see an island with lilies growing on it. Attempt to jump to the stepping stones, and throw the meat at the crocodile (who you affectionately name "Roger"). Pick the lily and return to Zahur's shop. She will begin to make the cure, and ask that you warm up her chemistry equipment by adjusting the individual heats until the overall temperature is at the marked level. Note: pressing "-" on the middle heat pushes the two side bars up. Raise the middle and right bar all the way, then alternate lowering the right bar and the middle bar until completed.
Fight with the Menaphite Akh[edit | edit source]
Before heading to the necropolis, gear up in your best melee equipment for a fight against a level 351 boss. When ready, speak with Maisa in the northern part of the necropolis, just south-east of the bottom right corner of Sophanem. Players with the Pharaoh's sceptre can use it to teleport to the obelisk if they have communed with it as mentioned above.
A cutscene will play where you chant the incantation and free everyone in the necropolis from Amascut's influence. All but two citizens leave, who wish to help you mine the blockage to Osmumten's tomb to help you defeat Amascut. You and Maisa will then return to her camp, where she discovers Osman spying on her. Enraged, she leaves, leaving you and Osman alone. You will argue with him about Maisa and your actions, while he keeps believing that this is all a plot by the Pharaoh to keep Al Kharid divided. As this happens, the ground shakes and lightning strikes the sand, causing scarlet flames to burn around. A Menaphite Akh will appear to kill you, while Osman disappears.
The Akh[edit | edit source]
The Menaphite Akh attacks with melee, using a dragon scimitar, and will also use special attacks. She is highly resistant to ranged and magic, making melee the best option for damage. Additionally, the Akh cannot be frozen with ice spells, and she moves at running speed, making it difficult to use long-distance combat.
The Menaphite Akh is weakest against stab attacks meaning the player is advised to use their best stab weapon using one of the stab attack styles for that weapon. For example: an abyssal dagger is superior to an abyssal whip.
With Protect from Melee activated, damage from the Akh's regular melee attacks are greatly reduced, meaning she will only be able to deal major damage with her special attacks. It is highly advised to bring two or three prayer potions or super restores in order to keep prayer active throughout the fight. Combat potions are also recommended.
If you leave the fight, speak to Osman just outside Maisa's camp to restart the fight. If players die during the fight, they can return to Maisa's camp just north of the mining symbol and reclaim their items from a gravestone just south of Osman.
Special Attacks[edit | edit source]
Every 7 rounds of actions (including regular attacks, summoning a shadow, or translocation), the Akh twitches, performing a lightning bolt attack that will move multiple tiles out in front of her. This attack can hit up to 80 if not evaded, and frequently hits in the high 60s.
- Always be prepared to walk behind or beside her to avoid this attack; players must move within 2 game ticks of the animation starting in order to avoid damage.
During the fight she will also summon a Menaphite Shadow, which will step out from under her and move away. The Shadow attacks with ranged for the first half of the Akh's health, and then switches to a more accurate magic attack for the remaining half.
- Always kill the Shadow as quickly as possible, moving only to avoid the lightning bolt when necessary.
The Akh will sometimes swap places with the Shadow and begin channeling an attack; make sure you attack the Akh (NOT the shadow) to interrupt this, otherwise you will take a large amount of damage. You will take this damage even after the shadow has been killed, if the screen darkening animation has begun (a chat box message will state "Darkness begins to surround you!" and the screen will begin to turn dark). If you defeat the Akh and the shadow is still alive, it will disappear.
- When in doubt, or if unsure whether or not the Akh has switched with her shadow, prioritize killing the shadow. If the shadow is dead and the darkening animation hasn't begun, you're safe to continue the fight.
Alternative strategy[edit | edit source]
Lower-levelled players having difficulty with defeating the Menaphite Akh may find ignoring the Menaphite Shadow to be easier.
At the beginning of the fight, pray Protect from Melee and focus only on the Akh. The Shadow attacks with Ranged, however melee armour will resist this. Always be prepared to avoid the Lightning attack and be ready to attack the Akh when she switches with the shadow for the channeling attack. Once the Akh reaches half health (240 hitpoints), the Shadow will switch to attacking with Magic, so switch your prayer to Protect from Magic. It is recommended to play with sounds on to hear when the Shadow switches attack styles. Continue the fight avoiding the Lightning and interrupting the Channeling attacks. Upon defeating the Akh, the Shadow will automatically despawn.
Finishing up[edit | edit source]
After defeating the Menaphite Akh, Osman will still not believe that Amascut is responsible, though he acknowledges that there's more to all of this than he realised, and suggests you speak to Maisa, who likely has gone to Sophanem, and leaves. Return to Sophanem, and speak with the High Priest or Maisa. The High Priest will thank you for ending the plagues for good and invites you to meet the Menaphites at the bridge, which you and Maisa accept. A cutscene will then play with the two groups meeting, before Pharaoh Kemesis himself appears, surprising the High Priest. He announces that Menaphos will prepare to end the quarantine and leaves as quickly as he arrives.
Note: Make sure to have an inventory space available before speaking with Maisa or the High Priest, otherwise you will not receive the Keris partisan as a reward. If you did not have a space available, Maisa will leave the partisan inside her tent at her campsite by the Ruins of Ullek. You can also retrieve this partisan from Selim.
Congratulations, quest complete!
Rewards[edit | edit source]
- 2 Quest points
- 50,000 Agility experience
- Access to the Tombs of Amascut
- A Keris partisan. (If your inventory was full, you may claim one for free from Selim in front of Al Kharid Palace.)
- The circlet of water, an untradeable helm that acts like a waterskin when worn. (If your inventory was full, you may claim one for free from the High Priest in Sophanem.)
- Access to a fairy ring on a small island south-west of the necropolis, code AKP. (Unlocked when entering the necropolis at the beginning of the quest.)
- Jaltevas teleport option on the Pharaoh's sceptre. (Unlocked by selecting Commune on an obelisk in the necropolis, by the mine.)
Required for completing[edit | edit source]
Completion of Beneath Cursed Sands is required for the following:
- Into the Tombs (miniquest)
Developers[edit | edit source]
- Main developer(s): Mod Ed
Transcript[edit | edit source]
Music unlocked[edit | edit source]
|Name||Unlock details||Music track|
|Dunes of Eternity||Unlocked upon arriving at the necropolis|
|Ruins of Isolation||Unlocked upon arriving at the Ruins of Ullek|
|The Forgotten Tomb||Unlocked upon entering the tomb below the Ruins of Ullek|
|Thrall of the Devourer||Unlocked upon fighting the Champion of Scabaras|
|The Pharaoh||Unlocked during the final cutscene|
Changes[edit | edit source]
|30 November 2022
(update | poll)
The xp rewarded to the Agility skill was increased from 20,000 to 50,000.
Gallery[edit | edit source]
Concept art of the High Priest of Scabaras by Mod Jerv.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- The RuneScape equivalent to this quest in the Desert storyline is Dealing with Scabaras, released on 2 January 2008.
- The name of the quest is a reference to the RuneScape quest Beneath Cursed Tides.
- Beneath Cursed Sands was first announced during the Summer Summit in 2021.
- The odd spectacles found during the quest are a reference to groucho glasses, which are based on the comedian Groucho Marx. They also served as Maisa's disguise prior to the release of the quest.
- The Crocodile named "Roger" may be a reference to the Madagascar crocodile voiced by Richard Kind.
- If you have completed Romeo and Juliet or Making Friends with My Arm, your character will mention their previous poor experiences with cadavaberries.