#489 Runescape

Posted: 16th April 2013 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , ,

232nd played so far

Platform: PC
Year of Release: 2001
Developer: Jagex Games Studio
Publisher: Jagex Games Studio

 This MMORPG is a bit of a different one. Probably one of the first of free to play, later taken on by smaller and larger MMORPGs including even World of Warcraft – a fact we’ve taken advantage of in some of our reviews so we can play the game more easily.

Runescape started off with that… and I noticed. My brother loved the game – addicted is a big word for it, but I know he played it quite a bit (and for all I know, still does, although Minecraft seems to have replaced it). I’ve avoided it so far, but let’s see whether it works.

Our Thoughts

Right, I have to complain about this. I know this was transient, but it’s left such a bad taste in my mouth that it immediately made me dislike the game more. You see, they have a tutorial in this game, as so many. It’s what you start of with. It feels mandatory and to honest – when I play a new game like this, I want to go through one so I know what I’m doing. Especially when I am going through it for a blog like this, where I want to get to know the game.

So imagine my annoyance when, about twenty minutes in, I got stuck in the tutorial because the game refused to recognise that I mined copper. I tried for about an hour and a half more, googled and found others were having trouble, but no reply and no solution. I came back to the game almost a week later and it was fixed, but I wasn’t happy.

You see, you’re trying to sell a game. The tutorial already contained a lot of ‘this is for paying members only’ stuff – in fact, I believe the whole tutorial area is. Getting people stuck twenty minutes in does not sell the game. If not for this blog, I’d have not  come back.

Even without that complaint, the tutorial is terrible. It lasts a long time – I think we properly played it for at least three hours and didn’t even finish it – and is boring. There’s a veneer of story, but it’s trite, boring, unbelievable and, well, just crap. It’s not compelling and didn’t draw me in further and certainly didn’t make me want to play. It was difficult to remember stuff anyway – they’re introducing thirty or so different skill, most of which I don’t care about, lots of which don’t mix, and really, when they’re only good for healing, and you heal rapidly anyway, why would you have five different ways to make food?

And that is the other part about gameplay. There’s lots of options, lots of skills, but most seem a bit too awkward, unnecessary to use or unnecesarily complicated. The game is a sandbox, and I just don’t find myself wanting to go in. In part because it’s too constrained – you just need to keep getting the same stuff in the same places to make the same thing. It is very grindy and just gets boring real soon. Even the different crafting skills are the same – harvest something, take to place, make it, there’s not much to it.

Beyond that, the game feels unstable as hell. The normal smoothing of action other MMORPGs do are absent, making movement jerky. Clicking a button is ignored sometimes and is instead interpreted as a movement click. Not that you can tell they do half the time, the window is that unobtrusive.

Graphics… dated but okay I suppose, just not as intriguing. I can see why the game appeals to its audience, and when you’re drawn in it would get a lot better, but it’s just not got that appeal. Too complex, too involved, and nothing to look forward do it feels. Maybe if you make it through the tutorial, but I can’t imagine many people would…

Final Thoughts

Normally I would have chipped in before now to offer something (anything) positive is when I would normally try and chip and in and offer something positive about the game but to be honest I could not think of anything to really recommend this game over other MMORPGs. In fact I can not understand how this is still around and City of Heroes is not. Why is this game so popular? Unless you started playing it 11 years ago when it first came out I just don’t understand it. 

  1. […] was interesting. Others, however, didn’t live up to the hype. I was expecting more from Runescape, but (technical issues aside), it just didn’t live up compared to what people around us […]