What started as a ranking system at the now deserted Mobilising Armies (more on that later), titles were once a fun diversion at a single location. Now, it’s almost impossible to venture to the GE without seeing at least half a dozen users’ name and title take up half a line of text as they discuss who has less of a life than they. It’s a waste of space in the chatbox and should only be a meaningless diversion when mousing over a character or right clicking on him.
11. Private Chat Ad Spammers
I normally play with my private chat set to friends. When I need to appear online, without skipping a beat, two or three bots will immediately message me the details of their scam website’s gold prices. It would appear simple enough to detect when the same few identical messages are sent by a player through private chat dozens of times in a short period of time, but no solution remedy exists. I wonder if the bots’ gold prices are competitive with Jagex’s now.
10. The Pop Up Ads in P2P
As it stands now, Jagex boasts “No adverts in game” as one of its incentives to upgrade to membership. This obviously isn’t the case as I always receive a pop up advertisement alerting me of the most recent promotion on the squeal of fortune. That is an advertisement, Jagex, so I suppose I am entitled to a refund for every month I’ve seen one of these ads. At least a check box to limit one of the ads to appear every five days was implemented.
9. Leeching in Dungeoneering
With a prime market of children who purchased gold with mom’s credit card, leeching floors in Dungeoneering is their best alternative to the botting they may use for other skills. On the other hand, the very players who defend Dugneoneering’s legitimacy as a skill are the ones providing a service to someone who doesn’t want to play the mini game.
8. Artificial Content
RuneScape became well known for its weekly or biweekly updates to the game as a means of keeping things fresh. To maintain this reputation Jagex releases content that takes nearly 30 seconds to code into the game. Excellent examples of this artificial content would be Sizzling Summer, vanity Items, and the “purely cosmetic” rewards from Solomon, Yelps, and friends.
I find the hypocrisy more and more pathetic as “RuneScape is not a dating site” remains encoded into quick chat. Sure, the players who spend their time enjoying cosmetic items, socializing, and house parties in world 31 have a right to do so, but why exactly is Jagex catering to them? After all, they’re deliberately limiting themselves in the game by not training. Jagex used that argument against pures who at least played the game, but still screwed them over time and again.
7. Deserted/Outdated Content
Conquest, Mobilising Armies, Trouble Brewing, and many other activities in RuneScape perpetually remain devoid of players other than a few new users and players going after their reward before never playing it again. Jagex could easily breathe new life into the mini games by adding better rewards, altering inconvenient parts of the game, and force the rewards to be recharged at the mini game. Jagex could even borrow their strategy with Dungeoneering rewards by allowing them to be repaired for a fee instead of playing the mini game again.
An illegitimate money source on both sides of the flowers, gambling remains a leading source of RWT gp and scamming. One player can gamble away his life savings and finish broke. Another can gamble just as much and win great riches… only for the host to log out. Just recently on the 17th of August, Jagex made a forum post informing the players of the banning of RWTing gamblers. Jagex has acknowledged the problem and still done nothing to prevent it.
5. Temporary Content
Holiday events at Christmas, Easter, and Halloween have always been a fun seasonal activity, but now Jagex will waste time on content never to be seen again for the most trivial reason. Thanksgiving, the Diamond Jubilee, and Octoberfest? Really, Jagex? At least the Gielinor Games was related to the vast majority of the world and came with weight reducing clothing, but too bad it was only around for four weeks.
These events aren’t necessarily bad, but the development time could easily be spent on something better. In fact, I have a question for Jagex. Where are the quests? We are eight months into the year and have only seen six quests, a third of which are novice quests. Jagex needs to start releasing authentic and genuine content more often instead of the temporary and artificial excuses for content.
4. Solomon’s General Store
Microtransactions have been the ruin of many an MMO in the past, and this store is exactly that. Allowing players to purchase such sophisticated stock as the Break Wind emote and the “lel so edgy and le cool ~XD”
Guy Fawkes Mask Revolutionary Mask and Hat, this store sells a variety of junk. The only other real issue is being unable to collect every emote without wasting money beyond the membership fee.
But just why is this microtransaction store named after “Solomon?” Is it perhaps an allusion to the son of King David from the Hebrew Scriptures, the very one whose greed and power deluded him into thinking he was above the law, ultimately leading to his downfall and the division of his kingdom? Perhaps, but I guess we’ll never know. However, if that is the case, I’ll make an allusion of my own: “But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth.” (James 3:14)
3. Squeal of Fortune
The only “spin to win” I want to associate with a free game is Garren from League of Legends, not the Squeal of Fortune on RuneScape. Unlike Solomon, this microtransaction-based system allows players to take an advantage over other players just for having either an economic advantage in the real world or access to mom’s credit card. And just when we thought it couldn’t get any worse, Jagex allows all prizes to be exchanged for coins. Jagex must also believe that the bonus XP weekends cut into their profit margins from the Wheel because they were replaced by bonus XP amulets on the Wheel.
Money and fairness aside, the Wheel not only breaks the fourth wall (thus defeating gameplay immersion), but makes no sense in the context of the game’s lore. No quest was completed to unlock this reward and an interface exists where a goblin randomly gives us items. In a game where a bead takes up the same amount of space in someone’s pack as a platebody, where guards and farm animals are slaughtered en masse without anyone caring, and where someone can carry less than 0 kg, the Squeal of Fortune still manages to be the most ridiculously asinine concept in the game.
2. Botting Plague
After the first Bot Nuke, the players rejoiced at their newfound freedom from the hordes of bots taking over the game… for about a month. Here we are not even a year later and all the bots are back in full force. The bots remain unbanned as we await the seemingly non-existent Optimus bot nuke. It’s impossible to train in many locations because there are just so many bots to compete against for resources. The reason they remain unbanned is likely the membership fee many of the botting accounts pay. Now why might that be? I’ll tell you. It’s none other than the infamous…
1. Insight Venture Partners
Responsible for most of the problems on this list, Insight Venture Partners holds a majority share of Jagex. They are the ones putting pressure on Jagex to release such detracting “content” as the two microtransaction-based systems mentioned earlier in the article. They do this in order to turn a quick profit at the expense of the players both financially and in the declining quality of the game.
We the players need our voices to be heard, but quitting is not the solution. If you, dear reader, wish to be a part of the solution and not the problem, refrain from purchasing any spins or Runecoins.