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Feb 9 2009: The Future of Runescape

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Hi Everyone,

 

 

 

I'd like to introduce myself to you all. My name is Mark Gerhard and I am the new CEO of Jagex, the makers of RuneScape. I have been fortunate enough to have worked at Jagex for some time now and consider us to be first and foremost a games developer. Were driven by teams that not only care passionately about games but also actively enjoy playing the games we create. We are going to be making a number of improvements to the game, I'm also keen to clear up a few misconceptions about RuneScape at the same time and I also believe there are a few things we have done wrong in the past that I want to apologise for.

 

 

 

To start off with, we want to be more open and listen to our players. Some of you may consider Jagex a secretive and closed-off company which isn't how we want to be perceived moving forward. Unlike most other companies, it just isn't our style to spend our time self marketing or shouting about how great we are, we prefer to just get on with it and make cool games, but that doesn't mean we don't listen to what you have to say.

 

 

 

A good example of this is that a lot of free players told us they found our video adverts before the game annoying to the point it was putting them off playing, so we've scrapped them with immediate effect. We now appreciate that it can be frustrating having to sit through a video advert when you just want to play RuneScape, so we have to put our hands up to admit we made a mistake and say that we're sorry. To be completely candid with you, video adverts generate significantly more revenue than other adverts, but as one of our fundamental philosophies is that having fun is more important to us than making as much money as possible, we have removed video adverts from the game.

 

 

 

We are also planning to change the way we communicate with you. We are going to be bringing back Development Diaries but making them more regular and focused on some of the different projects we're currently working on for you. These will replace Behind the Scenes, which we have found a creative constraint on our developers as the promised content has to come out as communicated in order to avoid disappointment and prevented us from surprising you with better or different content. It has also led to compromises in quality that we've not been happy with and, most importantly, pieces of content being released which you, our players, have not enjoyed as much as you should. A side benefit of this is that we'll be releasing more content which will be a complete surprise to you, so keep your eyes peeled for updates!

 

 

 

We'd also like to clear up a few issues surrounding the free game. RuneScape is different from all other MMOs in that the free game has an epic amount of content (we'd estimate over 2,000 hours worth to get all your skills up to 99 and complete all the quests) and isn't merely a demo for the members version. If anything, we see the members version as an expansion pack for those that really love the game and we feel both games are substantive in their own right. I want to apologise for habitually over-promoting the benefits of membership to our free players. I strongly believe if you love the free game you will equally love the members content and that is sufficient promotion to me. If you can't enjoy the free game in its own right then we're not doing our jobs properly. We will continue to improve the free game and, crucially, make it as fun as possible because we know that this is the way that everyone first discovers RuneScape.

 

 

 

We also have a long-term commitment to improving all the aspects of the game from overall graphical enhancements through to new gameplay mechanics.

 

 

 

Another thing that has cropped up in recent times, which we'd like to clear up once and for all, is the common belief that RuneScape is a game aimed at kids. This is absolutely not the case. We can see how this view has fostered, however, thanks to our over-zealous chat filter, Quick Chat worlds, dumbing down of certain bits of humour and storylines, as well as certain areas of the game like the Stronghold of Security, which do provide solid security advise but perhaps come across as a little condescending to the vast majority of our older players. I unreservedly apologise for this and to rectify this we have already removed a number of words from the chat filter and are currently working on reviewing and amending any content we feel is too kid-focused.

 

 

 

RuneScape benefits from one of the most diverse player demographics in the industry and is truly reflective of the worldwide population. As a responsible company we have had to comply with certainly regulatory obligations to ensure online safety for any younger players and as a result we introduced Quick Chat for players under a certain age, but this was to meet our legal responsibilities rather than who the game is designed for, its probably also worth noting that we have a total of 4 Quick Chat worlds in a total of 165 RuneScape worlds. As I said earlier, we are gamers at heart and we try to design games and content which we ourselves would enjoy playing. Im an active RuneScape player and Im ever so slightly over 21

 

 

 

We are also committed to working with our fans in the RuneScape community to make the game a more enjoyable place to be. We will be running community events, tournaments and JMod participation in-game to provide more support to you and make RuneScape an even better place to be.

 

 

 

To kick things off in this new era of openness I'm going to be answering your questions. For the next week we will open a thread in the News and Announcements forum for questions, and in a weeks time I will post answers to a selection of your questions. So please feel free to drop-in and ask a question or tell me what you think of the game.

 

 

 

Have fun!

 

 

 

Mod MMG

 

Jagex CEO

 

 

 

Pretty heavy stuff here. Welcome Mark! Even if you are using Mod Luke's username.

 

 

 

ITT:

 

-No more f2p video adverts

 

-No more Behind the Scenes

 

-More Development Diaries

 

-f2p isn't a demo (wait whut?)

 

-f2p will be improved (omg phreeloadurs lulz)

 

-Runescape isn't aimed at kids (huh?)

 

-KID FOCUSED CONTENT IS BEING REMOVED, HALLELUJAH!

 

-Community events, tournaments, and Jmods in-game. OMGWTFBBQ

 

-Thread where you can ask the CEO of Jagex questsions, AND GET THEM ANSWERED.

 

 

 

I'd just like to reassure there are still of course going to be lots of members updates.

 

 

 

Mark is referring to our desire to make sure the free game doesn't feel like it is 'just a demo', by making sure it is a complete self-contained game in it's own right.

 

 

 

I totally support that as an aim. It's not meant to be a demo, it's meant to be an in incredible free game, which people can enjoy for as long as they like.

 

 

 

However we're still going to do lots of members updates as well.

 

 

 

It's more about making sure the free game feels self contained and 'complete', and doesn't say "you need to be a member to do that" continually, than it is about just giving everything away for free which obviously wouldn't work.

 

I think I'm in love.


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=D>

 

 

 

i must be dreaming, because a jagex ceo would never talk to us, and certainly nto at such length!

 

:lol:

 

 

 

that aside, its good that he is finaly adressing osme of the issues and preceptions with the game.

 

I Will miss BTS, But iv'e missed the Dev diaries more.


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21.... and CEO....

 

 

 

WTF am I doing here..... lmao

 

 

 

Great news if you ask me!


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I've summed up the points for those who can't be bothered reading the whole thing.


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We will continue to improve the free game and, crucially, make it as fun as possible because we know that this is the way that everyone first discovers RuneScape.

 

Yay to me!


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83541st to Strength 99 [May 2009]----------124340th to Magic 99 [June 2011]

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F2p forever ...

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Interesting read.

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He's only 21???? WTF??

 

What does he know? Did he even goto college?

 

31 I can see, 21 thats gotta be a typo.

 

I don't get a good feeling about this at all.


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He just successfully trolled you with "courtesy" and managed to get a reaction out of you. Lol

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He's only 21???? WTF??

 

What does he know? Did he even goto college?

 

31 I can see, 21 thats gotta be a typo.

 

I don't get a good feeling about this at all.

 

 

 

"Im an active RuneScape player and Im ever so slightly over 21 :)"

 

 

 

He's joking about his age (trying to make himself look young etc.), he's probably a lot over 21...It's a common thing to say when you're 40+ or whatever.

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He's anywhere between six and nine months older than me. Wow.

 

 

 

Anyway, it's nice to see them talk back to us (like they used to), and I will definitely grill the CEO about some questions that still resonate loudly in my mind.


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He's only 21???? WTF??

 

What does he know? Did he even goto college?

 

31 I can see, 21 thats gotta be a typo.

 

I don't get a good feeling about this at all.

 

 

 

That's quite clearly a joking way for saying he's a longish way over 21.

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If 21 is a typo then good start Jagex!

 

 

 

If they can deliver on their promises here then i'll be playing Runescape for many more years to come. The increasingly childlike nature of the game (having your hand held through quests etc..) really has been starting to grate on me.

 

 

 

No BTS is interesting... And in a way excellent! Much like how it was a very long time ago when new quests skills and other activities came out of the blue! But atleast the development diaries will give us an idea of their major projects.


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13-14-608-58364531, for those that didn't jump to the forums right away - of course, it's the typical reaction to a JMod post...


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Removal of BTS?

 

That's the only bad thing about the post, the rest of it is AWESOME!!!


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Great to see someone coming in and obviously putting his ideas into immediate action. Maybe now we will see the removal of things that just dont hit the spot and more fantastic content.

 

 

 

Great read. =D>


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Amazing, just logged onto rs for the first time in ages, I'm really impressed! They should have made ME CEO though, I could of told them that years ago.

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Overall, I think Jagex has a decent new CEO. Though I don't believe the guy when he says having fun is more important than profit, for Jagex. I think he just wants to keep the players happy, since it'll bring in more cash. Not that it's a bad thing, it's just how companies work.

 

 

 

I dislike how they plan to stop the BTS. I always enjoyed that. Allthough DD's will compensate for that... but I'd prefer BTS.

 

 

 

Developing F2P is very nice of Jagex. F2P already offers more than enough to show people what Runescape is. Very unusual to improve the free version even more. But they definately deserve kudos for that.

 

 

 

The fact that they'll be more open with communication, the ingame participation and events and stop aiming at kids content is simply great. It's my greatest annoyance with Jagex. I'm curious how the Jagex' relationship with their players will develop.

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I really like the more F2P content (no, I'm a member myself). Whatever you feel F2P should be, not very long ago they were almost two completely different games. The most significant difference was the minigame area, F2P hardly had any, while members had a lot and to lots of players (including me), it's one of the most fun things to do. Maybe they would even get some new quests. Most of them were introduced at classic, besides the new holiday quests and rune mistery. That seems a bit unfair compared to members.

 

 

 

I also really like the idea of more diaries and less BTS, I've felt they didn't do their job all that well for a long while and I'm glad they're trying something new to raise excitement. The reason why I don't really like them is because I often felt let down, BA is a good example, so are the randoms removal (not the one this month) and some quests which sounded a better then they were (catapult construction's CW reward, anyone).

 

 

 

And of course the idea of being more open. But I'm a bit sceptical about that. I've been let down too much about that in the past. But we'll see how it works out.

 

 

 

13-14-608-58364531, for those that didn't jump to the forums right away - of course, it's the typical reaction to a JMod post...

 

LOL! I only read the first two pages and the amount of "bring wildy/staking/bbq sauce back" posts is hilarious.


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They're getting rid of the BTS? I must've overlooked that, but that's still quite awesome. The way that the Development Diaries have been done are ten times better than telling us what we can expect over the next month.


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I think Mark is joking about his age

 

 

 

It's a good example of him putting his 'not dumbing the humour down' promise into action straight away, with a joke that nobody gets

 

 

 

(please don't kill me Mark).

 

 

 

Your answer.


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Well it is nice to hear from a CEO up at Jagex glad they are doing some big fixes.

 

 

 

No more f2p video adverts - Don't really care for this I'm not f2p and it won't have any effect on me.

 

 

 

No more Behind the Scenes - I kind of don't like the removal of Behind the Scenes although the Development Diaries should be a fun replacement.

 

 

 

More Development Diaries - These should be fun, I'd like to see how close a few projects are to completion.

 

 

 

f2p isn't a demo - First I'd just like to say, lol f2p. Now of course f2p is still a demo don't be silly :).

 

 

 

f2p will be improved - Let them get their crappy little "improvements", as long as I am a member it's nothing near as close as to the content I get.

 

 

 

RuneScape isn't aimed at kids - About god damn time this crap has been cleared up.

 

 

 

Kid focused Content being removed - Good get rid of all the childish crap, this game isn't for 5 year olds.

 

 

 

Community events, tournaments, and Jmods in-game - This could actually be VERY FUN! Cannot wait for these and hope a majority, if not all of them are p2p.

 

 

 

Thread where you can ask the CEO of Jagex questions - I'm not wasting my time putting a question up in between about a few hundred other questions cause it'd be a waste of my time and probably won't even be answered.


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I hope removing kiddy updates will mean that pentagrams for demons are coming back. PLEEEAAASEEEE


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I think runescape will be alot better from here on in, it was a very interesting read and im quite excited about what lies ahead.

 

I do love that they will improve f2p but i really do hope they would remake the tutorial island and make it very interessting because thats one thing that puts anyone i know off playing. Ive been back and done it a few times and i really cant stand it. I wish i had freinds that play this game or even new people in my local area that played but it doesnt unfortunately appeal to alot of people.

 

 

 

Off topic: Best thing about wow was being in a guild with lots of freinds raiding and once or twice a year meeting up at a pub somewhere and having a good time. I wish runescape could have the feel of a more freindly orientated multi player game at, the moment i feel it is aimed more towards solo.

 

 

 

But i do beleave they are getting more into this with the addition of CC and the Coporeal beast and of coruse ls + cs.


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I was expecting to see something like "the dawn is coming" in that post. I hate it that the BTS gets replaced. those dev diaries better be good.


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:o That's awesome. Mod MMG, you might be what this game needs. Maintain your promises, and this game will benefit a lot.

 

 

 

What I really appreciate is that someone from Jagex has actually apologised for screw-ups in development, especially those with the 'kid friendly' label, and speaks the truth about it.


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