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OSRS Special attack guide

So the RS community is divided into two factions: Melee and Magic, and there's a lot of debate around which style is better? People often compare special attacks between different weapons and ask questions like "Who has the best special in-game?".

OSRS special attack

An old school runescape special attack is when you use an ability against your opponent instead of the normal weapon swing. This only works on melee attacks.

How can I do it?

There are two ways to perform a special attack:

* The first way is to hold shift (keep holding shift even after seeing the "commanding your character to hold their action" message) and then use the ability as if it were a normal weapon swing.

* The second way is by clicking on the "special attack" option instead of hitting your opponent.

Why would I want to do an Old School Runescape special attack?

Well, they are one of the best ways to break though enemy armour.

They are also riskier than normal swings, because you don't have any way of protecting yourself if the opponent decides to attack while you're charging your special for a long time.

Why Should I Choose Melee?

Because they can utilise old school Runescape specials attacks better than other melee styles. They have lower accuracy, but higher damage specials which are more successful at breaking through armour.

Why Should I Choose Magic?

Because the special attacks are the best out of all four melee styles in terms of pure damage output. Melee used to be better before they changed the specials because it had an ability that could hit extremely

Different types of special attacks and what they do

There are four different special attacks available in the game, all of which are unique to their combat styles (melee/ranged/magic). Each attack does a different amount of damage.

The highest damage special is the Godsword's 'special attack' option. It can also hit multiple targets at once if they're lined up correctly, but it is the slowest and riskiest to use.

The second highest damage special is a dragon scimitar's 'special attack' option, which can hit multiple targets at once too if they're lined up correctly. It is the fastest but does the lowest damage of all four melee specials.

The third highest damage special (not including the godsword's) is the Crystal Halberd's 'special attack' option. It can't hit multiple targets but it is still fairly fast.

The lowest damage special of all four melee styles is the Armadyl godsword's 'special attack' option which does not hit any other enemy besides the one you're attacking at that moment. It is the slowest and riskiest to use.

Special attacks are very powerful abilities, which will hit large amounts of damage against your opponent(s). They have a few drawbacks however:

* When you right click to attack with a special, nothing else will happen until you either cancel it or run out of damage potential on that special. This is very bad for people with lag.

* Specials require some charging time, so while you are waiting to attack your opponent, they can attack you back! This can be quite irritating while being in a fight where the person constantly runs out of your attack range before you have a chance to retaliate.

* It is easier to use a special on a single opponent than it is to use one on multiple opponents.

* Using a special attack takes up some of your adrenaline, which means that you cannot simply click the attack button and keep attacking until their life points are gone.

The last point is very important - If you are fighting, say, 5 enemies and use a special attack on one of them, you won't be able to perform another special until your adrenaline bar has filled up.

This means that if the other 4 enemies attack you at that same time, you will most likely die because all of their attacks will hit while your life points are not protected.


Old School Runescape specials can be very powerful, but they are at risk of losing you the fight if your opponent decides to attack you while you're charging up your special against another target.


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