The ranging skill is sometimes regarded as being not that useful. However, if we take the combat triangle into consideration, you'll be glad you trained it if you come across a mage in the wilderness. It's also much cheaper than magic in terms of ranged attack, but less versetile.
To begin with, you have to use a standard basic bow, nothing too fancy, but that's the same for any skill. As you go up in levels you can use better bows and better arrows.
You equip your bows and arrows just like equiping a sword, just click on them in your inventory and they will appear on you.
Ranging is very useful when you want to attack someone or something without actually taking any damage yourself.
For example, the runescape npc's aren't very smart, they will try and take the quickest route to get to you. This means that they very often can get stuck behind obstacles while you shoot all your arrows at them, easily killing them without taking any damage. Whereas if you were a warrior, then you'd have to get your hands dirty while getting up close and personal, probably taking damage at the same time. Obviously you'll take damage if you attack a ranging npc or a mage.
The downside is, you will lose arrows when you fire them. The upside is that you can go and pick most of them up again. The higher the metal that they are made out of, the more likely it is that you'll be able to use them again.
There are 3 types of attacks:
Experience is gained as follows. With accurate and rapid forms of attack, you will receive 4 ranging experience PLUS the damage you inflict, for each shot. Most people agree that the fastest way to level ranging is to use the rapid fire form of attack. Short bows fire faster than long bows, but are less accurate.
Members can use any bow they like, providing they have the right ranging level, whereas free players can only wield up to maple bows.
Bow Name Level To Wield Ranger Attack Value
Short bow Any 8
Long bow Any 8
Oak short bow 5 14
Oak long bow 5 14
Willow short bow 20 20
Willow long bow 20 20
Maple short bow 30 29
Maple long bow 30 29
Yew short bow 40 47
Yew long bow 40 47
Magic short bow 50 69
Magic long bow 50 69
You can train ranging in the same place that you train magic as they are both distance attacks.
But incase you haven't read my magic guide, the best places to train ranging are below.
For low levels go to the crafting guild (South East) of Falador and stand outside the cow pen and shoot arrows at the cow until you're level 10.
Once you reach level 10, go inside the cow pen, and to the East, across the water you will see werewolves. Start training on those, since you're inside the cowpen and there's water seperating you from them, they can't hurt you :)
Once you get to level 30 you should start training on lesser demons. And don't worry, where you'll train on them, they can't get you :)
Go to the wizard's tower (South of Draynor village), and go all the way to the top floor. Here you'll find a lesser demon in a cage (Out of harm's way), here you can easily shoot him with as many arrow's as you've got. You'll be able to train all the way up to level 60 in time (But you'll probably get a little bored after that lol).
The downside to training on the lesser demon is that once you've shot your arrows at it, you can't pick them up unless you use telekinetic grab, and it's probably cheaper to actuyally buy more arrows. But if you've got more money than sense, tele grab away :)
Hou Ti's range guide
We'll start with beginer areas, and move on to professional areas.
Misthalin Farms: I believe most all players start training here, you know where we speak of. The area dubbed "Cow Killers Arena". When you first start, this is probably the best area to begin ranging. You can attack behind the fence, protecting yourself. But don't spend years here, soon as you can move else where, do so.
Barbarian Village: This would be my second stop, you can range inside the biggest building, hiding behind tables killing Barbarians.
King Lathas's Training Arena: Once you've finished the Underground pass quest, King Lathas gives you access to his training area. A great place for rangers. Penned up orge's can be found here, at level 43. You have access to pick up your arrows and your bones of course.
Waterfall Firegiants: Beneath Baxtorian Falls you can find different rooms with level 90+ fire giants inside. If you're in the center room, you can hide behind the table. This place is great for two different reasons. 1.) Great range xp for your levels. 2.) For what the fire giants drop, of course first off the legendary Dragon Medium helmet, dragon spears and a small array of rune weapons, bars and other rune items.
You can buy yourself a short bow for 3gp each at Lowes Archery store in Varrock, you can also purchase bronze arrows for 6gp each there. This is where you want to start. If you're a member, you should think about Fletching to make your own ranging weapons. This is cheaper, and faster to do than buying arrows.
In the world of RuneScape 2, it seems that short bows are best used with the Accurate setting, and Longbows are best used with Long Range setting. A lot of times you can find people that are selling various types of pre-made arrows for decent prices. Of course, if you're just starting out then you don't have access to a endless pocket.
Oak Short Bow: Weild Level -5
Oak Long Bow: Weild Level -5
Willow Short Bow: Weild Level - 20
Willow Long Bow: Weild Level - 20
Maple Short Bow: Weild Level - 30
Maple Long Bow: Weild Level - 30
Yew Short Bow: Weild Level - 40
Yew Long Bow: Weild Level - 40
Magic Short Bow: Weild Level -50
Magic Long Bow: Weild Level -50
Bronze Arrows: Bow Required - Any
Iron Arrows: Bow Required - Any
Steel Arrows: Bow Required - Oak
Mithril Arrows: Bow Required - Willow
Adamant Arrows: Bow Required - Maple
Rune Arrows: Bow Required - Yew
Ranger armour wield Levels:
Archer Helm: none
Green Armour: 40+
Blue Armour: 50+
Red Armour: 60+
Black Armour: 70+
A full set of dragon armour, includes the following: Leather Body, Leather Legs and Leather Vambraces. Coif's can be bought in various ranging stores, or made with crafting
Following is a list of all ranging weapons.
Crossbow & Bolts
Opal Crossbow Bolts (Obtained from Gemrock Mining, Shilo Village. Use Cut opal with a chisel)
Pearl Crossbow Bots (obtained from pearls from bignet fishing)