Update: Runescape Changes-
Please note, at this point, my hub is a legacy article. Jagex has changed the Fight Cave... again. You can no longer beat Jad with Curses alone, because now the healers show up whether you actually hit him or not. Curses are still useful, just no longer the be-all and end-all of killing Jad.
If you follow the Fight Caves history, it becomes obvious, Jagex periodically updates to add difficulty. Each time players figure out a strategy that's effective and accessible even to klutzes (like me!), Runescape gets another update to make Jad harder again.
To top it off, the Evolution of Combat will change everything about the way we fight. I've given up writing in-depth combat guides. Too much work for something that's going to change every time you get it done.
If you'd like to see how easy it used to be... read on. :^)
Boom- There He Is!
The Accidental Guide to Winning a Fire Cape
This was not originally intended as a guide... there are too many guides to killing TzTok-Jad already out there. But after trying for weeks to beat the Fight Caves, when I finally managed it, I just had to write about it, and it just kind of grew into a guide. If it's helpful, I'm glad.
To get right to the point - If all you want is a technique that works, and is the easiest approach I've ever seen, pay attention because this is it:
You can beat Jad with nothing more than Deflects under Ancient Curses. (Once you're facing him, that is. You still have to gear up to beat the 62 waves of creatures before him.)
There. That's the short form of the guide. Need to know more? Keep reading...
Index to this Hub:
Weapons, Armor, and Inventory
Brews & Restores, or Pots and Rocktails?
Elite Enhanced Excalibur
Logic behind the Equipment
Fight Cave Map
Safespotting and Luring
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Arena
Kind of Fun After All
The Backwards Guide to TzTok-Jad
If you need a bit more detail, the rest of this hub follows my progress in learning to face Jad. I'm going to write it backwards. In other words, I'll begin by assuming you know how to get to Jad, and the basics of the Fight Cave, but just needed an easy technique to win the Fire Cape.
From that point, I'll add further and further detail. So you don't have to read the whole thing, just however much you need to.
The basic structure is:
How to beat Jad
How to get through the Waves
What to wear
Just scroll down to the part you're interested in.
Fantasy Worlds at Amazon
The Fire Cape
I Lack the Skill to Beat Jad in a Fair Fight
To begin with, Monique and I have been playing Runescape for about 7 years now. I have NEVER had any desire to take on Jad, the Fight Cave, or to get a Fire Cape.
The Fire Cape is generally thought to be the best all-round cape in the game. It gives a +1 for all Attack Bonuses, a +11 to all Defense Bonuses, +4 to Strength, and +2 Prayer.
You might wonder why I had no desire to get one? Because of the requirements. Before you even get to Jad, you have to defeat 62 progressively harder waves of monsters. Once you get to Jad, you're facing a level 702 boss monster, one of the most powerful in all of Runescape. To defeat him requires real-time fighting skills, not just a high-level character.
My hand-to-eye coordination is terrible, and my gaming skills are... laughable... when it comes to real-time action.
Never Wanted a Fire Cape, But I Really Want the Elite Task Mastery
Thus, I had no intention of ever getting a Fire Cape. Then the Achievement Diaries came out. Monique and I both enjoyed them, and the rewards were nice to have. When the Ardougne Achievement Diary came out, and had an Elite level, I loved it. Spent some time leveling up thieving, just so I could get the Elite 4 Ardougne Cape.
Shortly after that, they went back and re-worked all the Diaries, and changed the name to "Tasks". Now ALL the Tasks have Elite levels. I got it stuck in my head I wanted to have them all. After all, after 7 years of playing, I'm pretty high-level. Call it a point of pride, I just wanted to be acknowledged "Elite" in all the Tasks.
Must Wear Fire Cape
Turns out, to get the Elite, I have to do the Fight Cave
Imagine my dread when I realized part of the Elite Tasks for Karamja Island was (drum roll) to kill Jad? So, I decided to get a Fire Cape after all. (It wasn't an easy decision… I REALLY did not want to take him on!)
Being a methodical, plan-ahead type, I did all kinds of research. Looked up guides, read the forums, checked out YouTube. Most Fight Cave guides involved a wave-by-wave list of the monsters you'll have to beat, and some techniques for beating TzTok-Jad. To me, it seemed pretty complicated.
The Waves: Simpler than you'd think
Then I discovered, that there are only 8 truly different monsters to fight, including Jad. If you learn what each of the 8 can do, and how to face them, you don't have to memorize long lists of wave patterns. That was the first 'Eureka' moment for me, and it was a big one. Suddenly, it started looking more reasonable.
I might not want to memorize 62 waves, but I can certainly learn the characteristics of a half-dozen or so creatures.
Identifying Jad's Range and Magic Attacks
As far as TzTok-Jad goes, the usual advice is to stand at a distance, so he can't melee attack. This limits him to two styles, range and magic. You want to use protection prayers to keep his attacks from hitting, since he can very nearly kill even a maxed-out player with a single hit. The idea is to swap protection prayers rapidly, based on what form of attack he's preparing to use.
Jad Ranged Attack
Range Attack Style
You can tell when he's going to range attack by watching him. Jad will rear up onto his hind legs, and slam his feet down to the ground. Shortly after, a huge rock drops down from above and hits you. There is no warning sound. Once you hear the rock falling, it's too late. So Range Protect must be on as soon as possible after he begins the movement.
Jad Mage Attack
Magic Attack Style
You can tell when a magic attack is coming by sight AND sound. Visually, he will bow down, and form a ball in the air between his shoulder blades. When it's full-sized, it shoots toward you. The sound used to be kind of a double cannon-boom. But in 2011, Jagex decided to change it. Now the magic attack sounds like a very low hissing that slowly grows in volume. Magic protect has to be on as soon as possible when you hear the sound.
A good training vid of updated sounds
Praying Range and Magic Comparison
Above all, keep prayer switching!
Complicated enough for you? It gets better… Now, say you're ranging him with a crossbow and enchanted diamond bolts. This is a fairly common approach, recommended because you can keep some distance (avoiding his melee attack), and because the enchantment on diamond bolts makes them armor piercing. So they can hit through his protection and kill him faster. Sounds good, right?
Now, while you're making sure to do all this, don't forget to keep taking sips of prayer potion, or you could run out of prayer. And don't be distracted from prayer switching or he'll get you.
Here's to you Extreme Fighters out there!
And then there's the Yt-Hurkot: Jad's Healers
You're thinking, "Okay, I can still do this, it's not so bad", right? Well, when you get Jad to half his hit points, he summons 4 healers! These healers (Yt-HurKot) can heal him faster than you can damage him. (I'm not talking to you extreme fighters out there. If you're an extreme fighter, you're way too advanced to be reading this!)
Used to be, if you were cautious and timed it right, you could kill them and they wouldn't come back. Assuming you continue to remember prayer switching, because Jad's still attacking you non-stop.
Runescape updated the healers, now they come back. Some guides say they come back no matter what. Some say if you get Jad back down below half his hit points before killing them, they won't come back. Most newer guides tell you to hit each healer once, and let it focus on attacking you. They'll still heal Jad, but not so often. And, of course, they'll be trying to kill you.
Good video to train on, plus Yt-Hurkot example
Are you kidding me?
If you're still focused, and still successfully prayer switching through all that, more power to you. At this point, you can go through a complicated positioning strategy to get the healers lined up so only one at a time can attack you. Got that done? Now you can get back to Jad, who is still pounding away at you.
If you're like me, doing all this seems impossible. I see YouTube videos of people doing it, and from their conversations, they claim it's easy. For me, the best I could ever do was survive until the healers showed up. Sometimes, I got killed before even seeing Jad!
Now the good news:
(The following paragraph USED to be accurate. Now, Ancient Curses helps kill Jad, but you still need a strategy to cope with the healers. To learn the simplest method so far, keep reading.)
You don't have to do all that. All you really need is the Ancient Curses: Deflect Magic and Deflect Missiles. Ancient Curses are rewards obtained after the quest "The Temple At Senntisten", so you'll have to complete that quest before using this technique. The Deflect Magic and Missiles will protect from damage of that particular type, but they also BOUNCE BACK some of the damage to the attacker. You'll need a Prayer skill level of at least 68 to use both of these Deflects.
And before you ask me if I think your skills are high enough...
If you've got level 68 or higher prayer, and you have Ancient Curses, you're high-level enough to get to Jad and use this technique.
How to Lure Jad to Block the Healers
Best Strategy for Luring Jad (Now that the Ancient Curses approach has been nerfed)
I modified most of the text on this hub after Jagex killed the Curses technique. I tried to leave the flavor of the original guide, so you can see how it was originally. But new bits have been added here and there to make this guide still valid for Jad's newer restrictions.
The big deal with Ancient Curses used to be that the healers didn't show up, because it was a totally passive form of attack. You could kill Jad entirely without them bothering you. Now, even if you use a strictly passive approach like Ancient Curses, the healers still come.
So what I recommend now is to take a hybrid approach. Ancient Curses will still help you kill Jad. But you might as well hit him with some arrows. And you'll need a way to defeat the healers. Most approaches I've seen are too complicated for me. I have trouble keeping my prayer switching going, while doing all the junk the healers need to prevent them healing Jad.
The following video has what is (for me) the easiest approach so far. Once you've located Jad, run as shown in the video to lure Jad to the correct spot. Once lured, begin attacking Jad. When the healers show up, they'll be trapped behind Jad, and cannot get to you.
While still prayer switching, take your time, set attack style to long range, and shoot each healer once (don't kill them). Now they'll be focused on you, but unable to get past Jad to reach you. At this point, the healers won't heal Jad any more. You can switch back to attacking him until he's dead.
Another good Luring guide, with excellent Jad attack sounds
The Lunar Spellbook
Optional: If you have Lunar Spellbook and 94 Magic, use Vengeance
Like I said, I'm not very good at the real-time combat skills, but even I can kill Jad using this technique.
There's one more passive-aggressive option to consider...
If you can use the Lunar Spellbook (after finishing the quest "Lunar Diplomacy") and have 94 Magic or higher, there's an extra option.
Bring Death, Astral, and Earth Runes. Just before facing Jad, cast the Lunar Spell, "Vengeance".
If you make a mistake and Jad hits you (assuming you survive) then Vengeance will recoil 75% of the damage back to Jad. If you've got to take a hit, this at least makes it worth your while. My problem was, if I missed prayer switching just once, I got flustered and couldn't keep up after that. Maybe if I keep practicing…
That's really all there is to it. Below are some helpful suggestions; I found them very useful in preparing to face TzTok-Jad.
Credit to Sir Hemen for his amazing guide
First, credit where it's due: the person most directly responsible for my success is Sir Hemen. I found his advanced Prayer Switching Guide on Tip-It's forums, in a post dated January 2008. It offered my first real hope after weeks of failures. In it, he credits someone named "Lala" with another very useful technique. Several other guides, and Wiki, provided information, and helped me learn. But I never had a chance until Sir Hemen showed me how to practice. It's an older post, and some of the pictures and videos are gone, but it's still of interest, and worth a look.
Good sound recognition, good training vid
Did you say... Practice?
Yes, I said practice. See, here's the kicker - It takes a fast, high-powered player about 45 minutes to get to Jad. It takes me closer to 2 hours, using a ranged only approach. It's slow, but simple and effective. So, I'm taking 2 hours to get to Jad, and he kills me in seconds. Not much opportunity for practicing.
Suggestions along the way were not really helpful. Nothing in-game truly mimicked the pressure and timing of having to match Jad move for move in the Fight Cave ballet of death. Some people suggested playing a youtube video, and clicking on-screen with the video to practice. This was a better idea, but didn't really work. It lacks that in-game feel of clicking the controls and getting a reaction.
Sir Hemen suggests minimizing a youtube video on your monitor, and at the same time, your Runescape screen. The goal is to see both at the same time. Now put your character somewhere in the game near an altar, so you can recharge your prayer points. Bring a load of cheap food with you, like cakes. Play the video, and using the visual and sound effects from the video, practice actually switching protection prayers in the game. Periodically, switch menus to eat a bite of cake, then back to the prayer screen, keeping the rhythm of Jad's attacks. This mimics stopping to sip a prayer potion while under attack from Jad.
3 Fire Capes in a Row!
Can't argue with success
This training method provides the real game feedback needed to truly get the feel for fighting Jad. Being a slow learner, I practiced a lot more than recommended, but in his post, Sir Hemen advised another player that maybe 45 minutes of practice should be sufficient.
Was it fun? No.
Did I feel stupid? Yep.
This is a game, and here I am studying like it's the final exams back in college. All my time to relax was being used in... studying... to play a game!
Did it work? Booyah!!! Three fire capes in a row, I'm here to say it really works!
(Note - In Sir Hemen's guide, there's a reference to fighting low-level creatures, but it's brief and unexplained; maybe something that's no longer posted on the forum? Regardless, for the sake of learning what to do, it wasn't really necessary to actually fight. Just stand by the altar and practice.)
The Meat of the Matter- Simplest Way to Survive Jad
Prayer switching is simple in concept, but tough to do when you've invested so much time just getting there, and the pressure is on. Most people recommend watching/listening, and when Jad signals a new attack, change prayer accordingly. But this way, you have to pay attention for 2 different things, and it's easy to forget which one your mouse was hovering over, and click the wrong one.
According to Sir Hemen, Lala suggested keeping prayer on Magic, and only switching to Ranged when you see a ranged attack coming. Then immediately switch back to Magic. I had a similar thought, but my approach was backwards. Jad's ranged attack can only be seen, it can't be heard. But his Magic attack can be seen visually, plus it can be heard. So I start with prayer on ranged, watch for the bowing motion, and listen for the 'boom-boom' of a magic attack.
I keep prayer on Ranged until I hear or see Jad begin a magic attack. Switch to Deflect Magic, and as soon as the sphere hits me, switch back to Ranged.
This takes my mind away from half of the problem, and makes it far easier to hit the right prayer. All I worry about is when Jad begins a magic attack.
Remember, Ancient Curses are no longer enough all by themselves. But the idea of practice still is. Practice, practice, practice!
When to sip a prayer potion?
Timing for prayer potions: My favorite time to sip a prayer potion is right after Jad has reared up to make a ranged attack. Since I keep Deflect Missile as my default protection, I don't have to click on the prayer, and that gives me a little time to switch menus, click on the prayer pot, and return to the Ancient Curses menu. With a little practice, this isn't too distracting and I can do it without dying now. This is also my favorite point in time to eat if needed, and to re-cast Vengeance... if I goofed up and took a hit.
I'll mention it below in more detail, but it's critical here- use the function keys to change menus!
F1, F3, and F4 Menu Changing
Menu Controls: Learn to use the Function keys to switch menus when you need to drink a pray pot (or eat, if you missed a prayer!) F1 is the main inventory menu, and F3 is the Prayer Menu. For those using Vengeance, F4 is the Magic menu. This really helps. It's faster than trying to mouseclick menus back and forth, and doesn’t take your eyes away from Jad as much.
I keep one hand on the mouse to prayer switch, and the other hand on the function keys to change menus quickly... and without having to look away from Jad.
When to eat... Should I even try?
If you did miss a switch, and took a hit, the most important part is getting prayer back on track. This is where it's very easy to mess up. For me, once I miss, I tend to panic and keep getting it wrong. But if you manage to survive the hit, it's very important not to worry about recovering all those hit points back at once. Focus on prayer switching, and take a bite of food in between, like when you're sipping a prayer potion. Or don't even worry about it. If you don't miss again, it won't matter that your hit points are low. You have to balance out whether it's a greater risk to try and eat, or just get through on whatever HP you've still got.