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RuneScape

RuneScape is an MMORPG taking placing in a mythical fantasy realm divided into kingdoms, regions, and cities. With no linear story, players are able to make their own adventure by slaying monsters, trading, and crafting in a vast open world.

Publisher: Jagex
Playerbase: High
Type: MMORPG
Release Date: Janaury 04, 2001
Pros:+Expansive world. +No class limitations. +Huge population. 
Cons:-High bandwidth demand leads to lag. -Tedious skill grind. -Many features require subscription.

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Overview

RuneScape Overview

RuneScape is a medieval fantasy MMORPG developed and published by Jagex Game Studios. It is one of the longest running browser MMORPGs with new players continuously entering the world of Gelinor. Rather than actively allocating skill points, players gain skills by performing actions, such as the the ability to mine more efficiently is raised by harvesting ore in a quarry. As skills level up, players have more access to retrieve raw materials or use more combat abilities. With 26 skills, there are various ways to play and players are given full control in deciding their playstyle. A classless skill system means there are no limits on the type of character players can become. Become a warrior by slaying formidable monsters or chop down trees to build your own house. Collaborate with fellow adventurers to tackle boss monsters or test your skills in player-versus-player combat.

RuneScape Key Features:

  • Vast Open World with sprawling environments.
  • 26 Skills to Train ranging from fishing and cooking to swordsmanship and magic.
  • Voice-Acting NPCs – add depth to player-NPC interactions.
  • Hundreds of Quests including storyline related quests and side-quests.
  • Frequent Updates – expand on the games content and add special events.

RuneScape Screenshots

RuneScape Featured Video

Full Review

RuneScape Review

By Sean Sullivan

RuneScape has come a long way since its birth in 2001. I remember collecting bananas as my school's librarian explained the practicality of the Dewey Decimal System. Fourteen years ago, RuneScape was a crude Java experience that captured my after-school hours. Slaying cows and burying their bones for the slightest skill increase was rewarding. Looking at the vast map overlay teased my imagination with wonders of an expansive world that I would never see. Now RuneScape is in its third incarnation and it continues to be one of the most polished browser games available.

Character Creation

Starting the game you’re prompted to make your avatar. A fine assortment of hairstyles, facial hair, and colors are available to choose from. While it’s not a system like Swordsman that allows for free reign, enough variety is offered to distinguish yourself among your fellow adventurers. Stopping at a tonsure head, with a scalp that reflected the polygon sun, I discovered my character's calling. Finding just the right beard, I set forth to Gelinor as “Monk Lincoln,” ready to emancipate the world from monster tyranny while ignoring my marfan-ridden body. A touch of purple color-dye gave me the pimp-attitude needed to strike fear into the hearts of my enemies. When a game gives you just enough options to make your avatar a ridiculous extension of your personality, I'm happy.

Gameplay

Plopped into the game there is an air of chaos. And after a few quests symbolic of a training montage, Monk Lincoln became the hero the world doesn't need but is receiving anyway. Movement is through point-and-click, as it always has been. For senior RuneScape players, you’ll notice that while the world models have been updated, Text and UI interactive symbols have remained largely the same—the same “RuneScape UF” font. Combat involves clicking on enemies to watch your character’s default swing slash across stinking zombie flesh.

To the dismay of many fans, Jagex updated the combat system of RuneScape to modernize it in light of contemporary MMORPGs. The “Evolution of Combat Update” (EOC) added active skills and a hotbar indicating bound skills sits centerfold on your screen. This isn't the RuneScape I remembered but it is contemporary and RuneScape2007—a 2007 version of RuneScape—was created for combat purists.

The tutorial is extensive enough that UI elements are fleshed out. While the rudimentary symbols are not excellent indicators of their purpose, I discovered each one’s function quick enough. Hotkeys can be rebound, unlike previous versions, making the UI more manageable. Music is fantastic. I did not expect an extensive soundtrack on a browser MMORPG and it fits the medieval fantasy tone well.

PvP

When starting off you don't have to worry about other players pouncing you to ruin your day. PvP is limited to The Wilderness, a large zone in the northern area of the map. You won't wander there accidentally. A warning will prompt you to prevent egregious mistakes. The Wilderness is a desolate wasteland with vicious mobs and worse players. Successfully killing another players lets you immediately pick up any items that player has dropped. Upon death players will keep their three most valuable items. I suggest veering away from The Wasteland until you've had the chance to explore the rest of the world.

Enhancing The World

The most noticeable difference for returning vagabond players is the updated graphics. RuneScape 3 uses cell-shaded polygons to render characters and the world, most noticeably making a difference for players' avatars. Characters are imbued with enough detail to make them look distinct. It’s quite pleasing and holds its own in an industry where developers flex their engine—looking at you Black Desert—to excite players. Draw distances have been dramatically improved, revealing details that players overlooked because they were veiled by fog in previous RuneScape editions. Jagex is better able create an immersive experience with a world that tells a story thanks to the new system. Furthermore, the camera can finally be dropped down to a player’s perspective. Traditionally, RuneScape has employed a top-down overhead view like Ultima Online.

However, the updated graphics create a serious demand on bandwidth and I often found my game stuttering to keep up, particularly as the fog of war was lifted to reveal new environmental details. At times, it frustrated my experience and motivated my fingers to hover over “Alt + F4.” But it never became so debilitating that I was stuck staring at a frozen screen for more than a couple of seconds. Still, it's an area that needs to be optimized to create a lasting experience.

Quests

From what I remember, RuneScape lacked in the quest department. It was a fantasy world devoid of damsels in distress. Instead, there were cows to be mercilessly slaughtered—a world fueled by bloodlust for filet mignon. However, RuneScape 3 employs an extensive quest system with hundreds of missions varying in difficulty to complete. Plenty of side-quests scatter the world to detract from the main story as well.

Is the story a riveting adventure exploring the boundaries of morality and what it means to be human? No. It’s RuneScape. It isn’t an enthralling adventure but it is suitable. It hits all the right tropes so you don’t have to read any of the text and you’ll know exactly what’s going on. A quest marker guides you to exactly where your polygon body needs to be. NPC voice acting is particular well-done. While not ubiquitous, when employed it adds a layer of depth seldom seem in browser-based MMORPGs. Even more impressively, it sounds like the actors cared. Considering RuneScape’s profits over the years, I’m sure they were paid handsomely.

Skills

RuneScape's most impressive aspect has always been its vast skill system. Leveling up skills calls upon the intuition in an Elder Scrolls game. The more you perform a task the more apt you are in carrying it out. If you fish for eight hours a day you become more skilled in catching mackerel. If I practice slack-lining for eight hours I might finally be able to take more than one step without falling towards the rocky ground. With over 26 skills—fishing, cooking, farming, fletching, mining, magic, etc.— to level the task of completing them all requires an enormous investment.

Each skill starts at level 1 and has the potential to be capped at 99. Feeling a frenzy for ridding the world of the tree plague I set my axe to work. Chipping away at bark I was relentless, until coming upon a taunting oak tree. To chop down an oak you must be level 15 in Woodcutting. I went back to the grind to sharpen my axe against the unfortunate souls of lesser trees.

Cash Shop

Any business requires cash, and RuneScape knows how to incentivize players to part with some of the green. Many aspects of the game are locked unless you become a member. Want to dual-wield weapons? Better sign up for a monthly subscription. Hit level 10? There’s a new skill you could use but you're going to pay for it. I was running through the world as a bold explorer when I came across an ancient artifact embedded in the soil. Upon examining it closely I discovered that the rune was a “Members Only” interaction object.

There’s a large emphasis on microtransactions to play. Eastern game developers infuse nearly every MMORPG with microtransactions but there’s a suitable way to go about it. Large portions of RuneScape's map are off-limits to non-membership players. A continent nearly twice the size of any other called Tirannwn essentially has a bouncer checking Jagex’s records for your payment before letting you in. Did you hear about Island of the Apes? Well, you’ll only hear about it unless you pay. RuneScape’s tactic is like Wizard101. You get snared by investing time into the game and then discover that large portions of the game are paywall locked. If you plan to play RuneScape, prepare to invest.

Final Verdict - Good

While still a fantastic browser-based MMORPG, RuneScape no longer exhibits the allure for adventure and mystery it once did. It has conformed to industry standards which is not a bad thing but it doesn't feel unique. The 2007 version of RuneScape is available to play but capitalizes on nostalgia and soon wears thin. Still, RuneScape is an excellent browser MMORPG and perhaps the best in its class.

Videos

RuneScape Videos

Links

RuneScape Links

RuneScape Official Site
RuneScape Wikipedia
RuneScape Wikia [Database/Guides]
RuneScape Gamepedia [Database/Guides]
RuneScape Subreddit
RuneScape2007 [Old Version]

System Requirements

RuneScape Requirements

Operating System: XP / Vista / 7 / 8
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 or AMD Equivalent
Video Card: Any Graphics Card (Integrated works well too)
RAM: 512 MB
Hard Disk Space: 100 MB (Cache)

RuneScape is a browser based MMO and will run smoothly on practically any PC. The game was tested and works well on Internet Explorer, Opera, Firefox and Chrome. Any modern web-browser should run the game smoothly.

Music

RuneScape Music

Additional Info

RuneScape Additional Information

Developer(s): Jagex
Publisher(s): Jagex

Game Engine: Java, HTML5

Open Beta: January 04, 2001
Release Date: January 04, 2001

RuneScape 2 Closed Beta: December 1, 2003
RuneScape 2 Closed Beta End: March 1, 2004
RuneScape 2 Release Date: March 29, 2014

RuneScape 3 Announcement Date: August 30, 2012
RuneScape 3 Closed Beta: April 17, 20013
RuneScape 3 Release Date: July 22, 2013.

Old School RuneScape Launch Date: February 22, 2013

Development History / Background:

RuneScape is developed and published by UK independent developer Jagex Game Studios. Brothers Andrew and Paul Gower initially developed the browser-based game from their parents house in Nottingham. The first public version mixed 3D and 2D sprites in a top-down environment. In December 2001, the Gower brothers formed Jagex with Constant Tedder. In February 2002, a monthly membership was introduced and gave paying players added features such as areas, quests, and items. Jagex updated the game with three dimensional graphics and dubbed the new edition RuneScape 2 in 2003. On August 30, 2012 Jagex announced that an HTML5 version was in development, named RuneScape 3. It was released on July 22, 2013 and featured several graphical improvements from its predecessors. In February 2013, a poll for a separate RuneScape utilizing the 2007 version's features passed. An exact copy of the game from August 2007 was created and continues to be updated by a separate development team named Old School RuneScape.

  • People like to make fun of RuneScape, but it's a surprisingly hardcore MMORPG. Or at least it was back in the day. Along with Ultima Online, it was one of the few full loot MMORPGs. The fact that the game is still huge today is a testament to its success. The game is also much more in-depth than most Korean MMORPGs.

  • Rune Scimitar

    This game has a HUGE amount of content and i vouch for it better than most client based MMORPG's today. It is the most unique MMORPG that i have played. In runescape, unlike alot of new MMOs out today, it has a feeling of exploration, and you feel as though you really are the character in the game, and that you can do whatever you want, as opposed to the standard "doing quests by clicking and it takes you there and you click accept and kill 10 wolves" type of game. You explore, make friends, and train the skills that you want to train. There are so many different skills to gain exp on, from Magic, Defence, and Strength, To skills like fishing and cooking, that can be useful to you to get food. The quests in this game are very unique, and although they are not mandatory, they give pretty good rewards. Each MAIN quest is like a story, and you have to do things like collecting bones for a wizard, to he then tries to summon a demon for you to kill. The community is split between OSRS (Oldschool Runescape) and RS3. I personally enjoy OSRS more, because although it may seem simple, it is very open world and like I said before you have a more feeling of being the character in the game. RS3 still has alot of that feel, but also is similar to the standard MMORPG's out there, with RS3 combat being tab targeted, and new "Tasks" being the standard mmorpg type quest, but still having the main storyline quests. RS3 i recommend for people who are new to runescape, but are a fan of client based MMORPG's. OSRS i recommend for people who want something unique and simple to play, but has a huge amount of content you can waste hours and hours on.

    Overall, if you're looking to give this game a try, PLEASE DO, I guarantee
    you will be hooked for life!

  • Rune Scimitar

    By the way, the Runescape Community is HUGE. If you go on Twitch.tv (a live streaming site/app to view games), you can scroll down the list of "most viewed games" and most likely, if you count all the MMORPG's going down the list, Runescape is the 2nd most viewed MMORPG on twitch (#1 being WOW obviously).

  • Xerev

    I do agree that runescape has a lot of content. In my opinion though, most of these contents are subscription locked. I might be wrong. I did not dwell far into the game.

  • Lee

    I would like to give it a good rating but it's hard to. The game is just boring and their all sensitive about like bot training. Like honestly they need some remote to auto train for you.

    • John Hogen

      The idea behind it is things is worth what you put in it. Many games die because skills get leveled too fast and puts the game into late-game mode prematurely.

  • Darakath

    There are a lot of people playing Runescape and most of them love it. Rune Scimitar seems to be a powerful weapon from RS so I'm pretty sure it's just a fan.

    • I aint telling a computer my n

      lmao a "powerful weapon"

      • John Hogen

        In the past it was the go-to weapon for F2P due to the attack speed.

  • KawaiiWalter

    Played this game since 2004-2015.
    Unfortunately I had to quit because of the poor/lacking customer service. (If they even had any that is)

    Now playing this game for so long, I never ran in to an issue while playing. Nothing that made me have to get the attention of customer service. Till one day, some hijacker managed to get through me security in game, My bank pin, my 2 step verification for my email, my Auth-code hooked up to my phone, my security questions, my JA-Gaurdian, and to make matters even more confusing. My computer is secluded to playing only RS, Steam and WoW.

    All my browsing, downloads, Anything! is on my computer. I've always been a nut when it comes to games like this and protecting them.

    Jagex looked in to this case and saw that everything I've done was followed correctly. Their reply is they can't help because they posted in a thread saying they wont. Well that's about it.. Oh yeah, and they copy paste the same messages too you so it feels like you're talking to no one and just being passed by. Been/still trying to get a hold of someone there and it's been over 4 months. I try about every other week, and I just get the same copy paste.

    Sorry, but you lost yet another player that actually enjoyed your game, and it stinks that you're losing more. Already had 5 friends quit because I was the one that got them in to the game and we all play together.

  • Donald Trump

    This game is offensive to Mexicans.

  • Ivan

    RuneScape is great and I enjoyed playing from '06 to about '11. After I quit, I picked up TF2, GW2, TDU2, and a bunch of other MMOs. I considered returning to the game because of everything I earned in the game (which is worth a lot considering how everything has depreciated so much and I still have a big bank). However, the membership fee just isn't worth it anymore. I don't miss the mindless grinds, where I was basically forced to chat with people or watch a TV show while I clicked every minute - I wasn't really playing the game, but I wasn't really chatting with others or paying attention to the tele either (most multitasking is just doing many things badly). I don't miss the grind at all, and having to pay to grind more to reach ridiculously silly levels (max is now 120 for skills, not 99), despite the improvements to exp gain, is just not worth it.

    In retrospect, EoC is what killed it for me and daily quests and bonuses were too time-consuming.

    If you miss RS, just find a private server and play until you get sick of playing, you won't ever need to return to RS3 or OSRS.

  • Matt Wing

    My word on Runescape: Ah, lovely world, great game, people are variable, but bots are everywhere, now, I know this is going to sound like a rant, but hear me out.

    I spent 5 years legitimately working up an account, it all gets taken away once fucking RS3 hit the shelves, I had another account before RS3 also, that got hit too! so now I googled and was even going to ask Jagex if I could have all my old things put back into OSRS, but they got rid of the Human element to their support.

    Long story short, I botted, I got caught, banned, I know, I "deserved" it, but think of it this way, they basically strolled into my property, confiscated all my hard earned work, and told me to move on, TWICE.

    Now I'm not going to say Runescape is a horrible game(well I will say RS3 is horrible) but don't get too attached to it, Jagex will fucking steal from you with no remorse and ban you for trying to catch back up!

    • John Hogen

      I think their banning and appeal system needs to be worked on - People could change, so roll skills back, restrict privileges, a "prison mode" for serious offense. When you ban a 5-10 year account, the player simply isn't to come back one way or another, nobody is that much of a masochist to grind all over again. Plus getting banned means losing all ties to your in-game community/friends, which is an important part of the game.

  • John Hogen

    Seconded. It seems this is happening more and more frequently, perhaps something wrong with their detection system.

  • adwad

    DONT EVER install this game i literaully played it for 10 minutes and it got fucking bugged on the tutorial as I couldnt drag an ability to my action bar no matter what I did

  • lemler 3

    you were botting or using an unauthorized client dont lie, you could easily have jagex mods look at your account to get unbanned