A compass was an instrument used to determine direction on a planetary surface relative to that world's magnetic poles.
As a young boy, Jean-Luc Picard was given a compass by his father as a birthday present. Picard had nearly lost it during a minor sailing accident, but his father was able to loop it around his neck while the two swam to shore. (TNG comic: "The Gift")
The compass (aka mini map or radar) helps with navigation of one's surroundings as well as shows the locations of targets within the area. Each color dot/triangle represents a different type of target.
When in a zone or mission, the party leader will get a bar added on the bottom of the compass allowing him/her to position henchmen without moving their own character. Players with heroes are also able to remotely control them, both as a group and individually.
The Silver Circle in the center of the mini map represents the player's Danger Zone. If the enemy enters this circle, they will gain aggro and attack. Use this circle wisely to avoid unnecessary fights. Mastery of this principle is vital to aspiring runners.
To assist team mates in combat, players can help direct them by either pinging the compass (single click of the left mouse button) or by drawing lines on the compass (hold down the left mouse button and move). Doing so can help turn the tide in a battle when players are willing to cooperate. Be aware that unnecessary usage of the compass (e.g. drawing smiley faces) can be annoying and disruptive. Also, it's wise to allow only the leader to use the compass to lead his/her team since there is no way of knowing who is pinging/drawing on the compass at any given time.
Note that in some missions the game will automatically ping the locations of important places, items or characters at a set time or interval to ensure that players do not lose track of where those things are. Pings created by players are red, while the automated pings that appear during missions and quests are yellow or blue.
In the Nightfall update, Hero command buttons were added under the compass, allowing players to order specific Heroes to certain locations on the map. The green flag icon was also added and acts as a "rally" command, affecting all NPC members of the party, including Henchmen and Heroes. The party leader can use the flag to move Henchmen, allowing for more effective coordination. Note that only the leader can control Henchmen; party members will neither be able to control them nor see the flag location. Likewise, Heroes can only be flagged and the flag location seen by the player who owns the Hero.
Compasses have been used by a number of characters in Lost, most often for navigation. They are necessary for getting to and from the Island on the correct bearing; however, they do not appear to function correctly on the Island.
In the semi-canon videogame Lost: Via Domus, Elliott Maslow found a compass in the caves with the inscription "Via Domus" next to a skeleton reminiscent of Adam and Eve. ("Via Domus") Elliott used the compass to navigate around the Island, and it eventually led him to the Swan's reactor in the Incident Room. ("Hotel Persephone")
The Minimap (also called mini-map in RuneScape documentation, or radar amongst players) is the area of the game interface in the upper-right of the screen. It shows a bird's eye schematic of the player's surrounding area, with the player at the centre.
White lines represent walls, fences, etc., although a red marker indicates a door or other penetrable feature. Coloured dots act as markers to identify nearby items, players, monsters and NPCs (see below for more details). Certain buildings and features (such as water sources) are marked by icons.
Players can navigate by clicking directly on the minimap itself. A red flag will appear to show that the server is moving the player to the area clicked on; however, if one tries to enter a location that is inaccessible (due to a door being closed, or some other obstruction) then either nothing will happen, or the game will move your red flag to the nearest point that you can travel to.
Near the top of the minimap there is a compass that can aid players as a navigation tool. The "N" arrow represents north, and the other (unlabelled) arrows represent the other directions, as with a standard compass. The other directions used to be labelled, but that was taken off because in many languages the words for west, south and east don't begin with "W", "S" and "E" while "N" for north works for most languages. Clicking the compass faces the camera directly north and slightly elevated.
Instead of showing the direction one's character is facing, as could be expected, the compass shows the direction which the camera and minimap face. In order to throw off some macro programs, the compass and minimap are not aligned perfectly with each other and the camera.
The following colour scheme denotes different things:
There are no markers for followers.
In RuneScape Classic, red dots represented items, white dots players, green dots friends, cyan dots scenery, and yellow dots NPCs.
The scale of the Minimap is equal to that of the official Java-based World Map at 100% zoom, or exactly 16 pixel-lengths2 = 1 square. Alternatively, the conversion 4 pixel-lengths = 1 square-length may be used. When perfectly aligned along the horizontal and vertical axes, the Minimap displays a circular area with a radius of exactly 19 square-lengths.
The RuneScape minimap includes four icons, also referred to as Status Globes, representing from top to bottom: Hitpoints, Prayer, Energy and Summoning points. To the left of each icon is a number representing the player's remaining points in that category. Only the first three icons will appear to players; once the proper conditions are met the Summoning icon can be unlocked (for Members only though).
The Hitpoints icon shows the player's remaining hitpoints. The background of the icon will drain in colour as the players Hitpoints are reduced. Also, the colour of the numbers next to the icon will change from green, to yellow, to red, then begin to flash as a player loses more Hitpoints. The background will turn green if the player is poisoned or yellow if the player is diseased. If the player has cure for poison/disease in their inventory, they can click on the icon and will use up one dose of the antipoison or Relicym's balm. If the player has different kinds of antipoison (such as regular antipoison and super antipoison), the highest level will be used (so in the above example, super antipoison would be used if the Hitpoints icon is clicked). If the player has the Prayer book from The Great Brain Robbery, the icon will not cure the poison; the player has to manually use the prayer book.
The Prayer icon shows the player's remaining Prayer points. As with the Hitpoints icon, the background will drain and the numbers will change colours as the player's Prayer is reduced. This now has the option to toggle quick prayers on and off. These quick prayers can be set by right-clicking the Prayer icon and choosing "select quick prayers" this opens a menu which a player can choose which prayers they want activated when enabling quick prayer.
The Energy icon shows the player's remaining energy, or how long one can run before walking. A player can also click on it to toggle running on or off. The background will not drain (although the numbers will change colours) as energy is reduced. The option to rest is accessed by right-clicking the Energy icon.
When you right click on the running bar you can rest, this enables you to charge both your hitpoints and run energy at the same time (twice as normal). Resting in front of a musician charges hitpoints and run energy three times as fast.
The Summoning icon only appears on the minimap if you are a member and you have completed the Wolf Whistle quest, which is required for the Summoning skill. Clicking this icon opens the Summoning screen and shows the player's remaining Summoning points. As with the Hitpoints, Prayer, and Run Energy icons, the background drains and the numbers will change colour as the player's Summoning points are reduced. Summoning and Wolf Whistle are only for members.
The World Map icon, when clicked, will bring up the World map. When clicked in an un-mapped dungeon or during a Random event, the view will default to the Lumbridge Swamp. It was added with the RuneScape High Detail update.
Note that these icons only appear while players are in PvP worlds.
The Safe zone icon appears when players enter "safe zones" while on PvP worlds. This indicates that the player cannot be attacked by other players. The Level range (located just below the "Safe zone icon" shows a particular level range of Combat level, where any player within that range can be attacked by the player.
The Hot zone icon appears when players enter "hot zones" while on PvP worlds. See Hot zones for more information.
The Countdown timer icon appears when players enter "safe zones" while in combat. When the 10-second timer is still active, the player can still be attacked and killed even while in a "safe zone".
Achievement Diaries • Advisor system • Chat • Clan Chat • Combat options • Choose Option • Emotes • Equipment Stats • Friends List • Game controls • Ignore List • Inventory • Items Kept on Death • Magic spell screen • Main Menu • Minimap • Music Player • Notes • Objective system • Options • Prayer screen • Price Checker • Quest List • Quest Overview • Quick Chat • Spam filter • Stats • Summoning screen • World map • Worn Equipment