In Oldschool RuneScape (and, to this date, RS3 as well) you can prospect any ore rock. But I never understood the purpose of this feature. Visually, it's very obvious which kind of rock you're mining, there is no real need to prospect the rock and you don't gain any experience either.

Are there some extra benefits from prospecting a rock that I am missing?

  • 3
    To clarify, do you mean old school as in the classic old-school Runescape, (i.stack.imgur.com/fkvxm.png)? Or do you mean Runescape 2 (i.stack.imgur.com/BsVWg.jpg)?
    – TylerH
    Aug 30 '17 at 14:02
  • 2
    I meant RS2. You can find that in the description of the tag. Valid remark, though.
    – SolveSoul
    Aug 30 '17 at 14:14
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    "It's very obvious which kind of rock you're mining". Obvious to who? Someone who has been playing the game and has mined each rock learning what it is?
    – marsh
    Aug 30 '17 at 14:30
  • IIRC all rocks looked the same in the "mined out" state. So unless you waited around for them to regenerate, you wouldn't have a way of identifying their type
    – Alexander
    Aug 30 '17 at 18:19

In the past there was no difference in appearance for when a rock was mined or if it had ore. With prospecting you could determine if it was mineable.

They never removed this feature after a rock would turn grey when mined so that new player can use this to learn what color can be associated with what ore.

Reference: RuneScape Wiki


While it may be obvious to you now which ores an ore rock may give, this was not always the case. Prospecting a rock was the only way in the early days to find out which ore a rock gave before mining it. If you did not have the mining level to mine that rock, you could not find out which ore the rock gave.

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    This is false. Different ores wouldn't have the same color. The case was that a non-mined or mined rock would look the same way.
    – Starcaz
    Aug 30 '17 at 8:20
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    I did not mention color at all. Trying to mine a rock that you did not have the level for would give a message akin to "you need level 10 mining to mine this rock" without specifying the ore.
    – Sumurai8
    Aug 30 '17 at 9:08
  • Ah, I see what you mean. But still, this is not the main reason it was introduced.
    – Starcaz
    Aug 30 '17 at 9:48
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    @Starcaz Sumurai doesn't offer a reason why the feature was introduced.
    – TylerH
    Aug 30 '17 at 13:58
  • 1
    @TylerH Well I read his answer wrong twice then.
    – Starcaz
    Aug 30 '17 at 14:01

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