We all know RuneScape isn’t the best game around. This java-based game is not quite up to par with other online games such as WoW or GW, which take pc gaming to a whole new level. And ever since the release of new and improved console games by the three most widely marketed platforms on the planet, the world of PC gaming has suffered heavy casualties. So the question is, why is RuneScape still holding strong, and even growing?!?!?
It’s not because of the 2d-animations, the humorous quests, or even the excitement of turn-based fighting! The answer is the community itself. Whether Andrew Gower intended this to be so or not, it is one of the main reasons behind this MMORPG's success. And it's the reason that it is still able to compete against the ever changing world of gaming.
RuneScape is simply an expanded version of a chat room. It’s human nature to want to communicate ideas with one another. All the gamers that have ever played RS have some kind of connection to RuneScape’s society. You play, you make friends, then you play with those friends. These people make you want to keep playing. Don’t believe me? Look what page you're on now. This site has no games to play and, if we're being honest, nothing really fun to do. But yet thousands of people visit this site every day. What do we talk about with our RuneScape friends? Anything from discussing what Jagex should do next, to making fun of noobs (not newbs, noobs). This game has a strong sense of community. In this RPG, friends can even just sit around and do…nothing! This is very different from other games, where you must always run and fight constantly.
There's also clans, which unite complete strangers under a common banner to fight over...well, nothing. But you know, you can't help but have fun doing it. A while back, here in the Tip.It Times, I read an interview with Gregechidna6 (a former RS legend) about RS not being "fun" anymore. Well, I had to ask myself why I played a game that wasn’t "fun". Then I realized it’s not supposed to be. Consider this: RuneScape is like any game that you can buy at the store, without online capabilities. Saving up for months to be able to afford a Phat would seem like a huge waste, if one weren't able to show it off to anyone, right? I can play other games, like Grand Theft Auto, for example, all day long and not accomplish a thing, but still be content. GTA, like other video games, does not require a community to back it up. I don’t think I would play RS if it were not a multiplayer game. I mean, what would you do? Let's take a look at some other online RPG’s. Games such as Gaia, Battleon, and Bots. You probably haven’t heard of any of these. Why? Well, the reason (other than they're pretty much pointless) is that people just don’t care on those games. These games cater more to people who like "on your own" type of games. In those games, players don't make friends, and they don't do things in groups. RuneScape doesn't advertise - at least, not that I know of. The only way knowledge of this game seems to travel is by word of mouth. And it works pretty well, when you think that RuneScape has roughly 4 to 5 million active users. Compare that to WoW, that has 7 million active users, but advertises probably more than any other PC game. If Jagex were to invest a bit into advertising, I’m sure it would pay off.
The point is, if you have a lot of friends that play RuneScape you probably compete and play together. This is why Jagex doesn’t lose many "customers". Also remember that RuneScape is accessible for most people, and you don't need 1GB RAM and a name brand $500 graphics card to play it. This simple java program isn’t game, it’s a way of life.
Did You Know...
......that if you're F2P, the key to Melzar's maze is non-recoverable after finishing the Dragon Slayer quest? So if you want to enter the maze again, be sure to keep your key. If you're P2P, you can buy another key to the maze, but you have to finish the Legends Quest first!
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