Andrew Gower developed RuneScape with the assistance of his brother Paul Gower. It was originally conceived as a text-based browser MUD, but graphics were incorporated early in development, adding it to the ranks of what were then known as "graphical MUDs". The first public version of the game used a mixture of three-dimensional and two-dimensional spirites.
It was released as a beta version on 4 January 2001, and originally operated out of their parents' house in Nottingham. In December 2001, the Gower brothers, along with Constant Tedder, formed Jagex to take over the business aspects of running RuneScape. Among its early innovations Jagex developed an interpreted domain-specific scripting language called RuneScript, which is used by RuneScape's server for event handling.
On 27 February 2002, a monthly membership service was introduced, allowing access to additional features including new areas, quests, and items not available to free users.
As the game gained more users, Jagex began planning major changes. The developers rewrote the game engine, producing a new version of the game with entirely three-dimensional graphics called RuneScape 2. A beta version of RuneScape 2 was released to paying members for a testing period beginning on 1 December 2003, and ending on 29 March 2004.Upon its official release, RuneScape 2 was renamed simply RuneScape, while the older version of the game was kept online under the name RuneScape Classic.
On 12 January 2006, Jagex banned more than 5000 Classic accounts for cheating. To prevent further cheating, RuneScape Classic was closed to new accounts, and access was restricted to accounts who had played Classic at least once between 3 August 2005 and 12 January 2006.
Ranged combat in RuneScape Classic
To support RuneScape's free content, advertisements appear on a banner above the playing screen on the free-to-play servers. Since computer users may use advertisement blockers, which may discourage advertisers, Jagex introduced a rule that prohibits players from blocking these advertisements.On 13 July 2006, Jagex signed an exclusive marketing and distribution contract with WildTangent Games, which granted WildTangent the right to handle advertising in and around RuneScape in the United States, and to distribute RuneScape through the WildTangent Games Network, reaching over 20 million consumer PCs.
On 16 May 2006, Jagex upgraded RuneScape's game engine, improving the game's loading times and reducing its memory requirements. The engine was upgraded again on 26 June 2007 to allow the addition of future content.
On 1 July 2008, Jagex released a beta of their "High Detail" mode for members, which was extended to free players two weeks later.Before the launch, Jagex stated that it would be officially revealed at the 2008 E3 trade show.
In September 2009, it was announced that RuneScape Classic would be re-opened to the public, including a feature where players could rent and administer their own server, giving them the ability to allow or ban any player of their choice, as well as enabling or disabling cheat codes they want. Two months later Jagex announced that the plan would be dropped. The game was re-opened for two weeks in November 2009, again for two weeks in June 2010, and for another two weeks in September 2011 to paying RuneScape members, who were told they would be permitted to continue playing Classic after that time provided they had logged in during the two-week period.
In an interview in May 2008, former Jagex CEO Geoff Iddison stated that, "We do plan to go East with it [RuneScape] to the Asian market and the Eastern European market too" [...] "RuneScape is not for Japan, but it could work well in Malaysia for example. And where's India in all this? I think RuneScape is a game that would be adopted in the English-speaking Indian world and the local-speaking Indian world. We're looking at all those markets individually." RuneScape later launched in India through the gaming portal Zapak on 8 October 2009, and in France and Germany through Bigpoint Games on 27 May 2010.
Till now, there are more than 100 servers in runescape and can let more than 300,000 players to log in simultaneously. They are located in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, the Netherlands, Australia, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, Ireland, Norway, Denmark, New Zealand, Mexico, France, Lithuania, and India.Servers are moved or added as the need arises.
Each RuneScape server allows up to 2,000 players to log in simultaneously, allowing a maximum capacity of more than 270,000 players. The servers are divided into free servers which are available for all players, and servers which are reserved for paying members. Some servers are given activity labels, allowing players performing tasks that require or desire group participation to group together.In addition to the English servers, there are two RuneScape servers where the game is translated into French, five servers translated into German, and six servers translated into Brazilian Portuguese. There are also three servers for RuneScape Classic.
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