Many people have played Jagex’s hit MMORPG, Runescape, at least once in their life. Whether it be Old School Runescape, Runescape 3, or even Classic Runescape, these fans can all attest to the addicting nature and interactive community of the title. It is with a sad heart that in the month of August, Runescape Classic will have its servers shut down for good.
Runescape Classic was the MMORPG that sprung Runescape into popularity as the must-play free MMORPG for its time. Launched 17 years ago in 2001, the grizzled MMO has seen its servers continually open and unchanged even after major updates. It has held a special place in not only Runescape history, but also a place in veteran player heart’s. The blast from the past has not been touched since the move from Runescape Classic to Runescape 2 (now currently known as Old School Runescape). Users have been able to experience the unadulterated experience of the oldest iteration of Runescape for nearly two decades now. That era, however, will be winding down to a permanent halt over the next three months.
The big question though is: why shut down the servers after so long? To put it simply, the game is breaking. As resources have been put towards maintaining Old School Runescape and Runescape 3, there has been no attention given to Classic Runescape, and as a result, any and all tools used to help keep the other two versions of the game alive and healthy will not work with Runescape Classic. Because there are virtually no tools to help with Runescape Classic. As of now, the lack of anti-bot programs has made botting rampant (more so than the other two live versions of the game), and the lack of community safety tools have allowed for literal game-breaking bugs to go uncontested.
“We […] feel that we can no longer offer long term service reliability due to the growing risk of unrecoverable game breaking bugs,” reads the blog post. As more and more users find bugs to abuse, there is no way to contest these users from continuing to break the game. It is also impossible to fix these bugs because due to the unsupported nature of the game, so the game will continue to gradually break until it is eventually and unavoidably unplayable. Rather than have the game become unplayable without warning, Jagex has decided to send off their title with honor before it gets to that point.
Dedicated Runescape Classic players, or curious fans, will have the next three months to satiate their classic Runescape experience cravings. The servers will officially close down for good on August 6 at 12 am PST. Afterwards, the original Runescape that fostered the current community will never be playable ever again.