Jagex stamps out an Old School RuneScape mod prior to release, players organize a protest [Updated]

    
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(We’ve updated at the end with Jagex’s latest statement.)

An Old School RuneScape modder is steaming after Jagex sent out a letter demanding that the project be shut down, despite the game being open-source. RuneLite HD is one of several graphical mods apparently being targeted by the MMORPG developer, which posted that it sent out such letters due to the fact that it is working on its own HD upgrade for OSRS.

“Yesterday we contacted the developers of known HD projects and we asked them to stop development of their projects, because this is a project we are directly investigating at Jagex,” the studio posted. “Hopefully the news that Jagex and the Old School team are tackling this project in earnest is something that excites you, even though it does mean that we need to politely ask you shut down your personal project.”

What especially burns for both the modder and fans is that this demand came out just hours prior to RuneLite HD’s release.

“So, it appears that this is the end,” mod author 117 said on Reddit. “Approximately 2000 of hours of work over two years. A huge outpouring of support from all of you. I could never have imagined the overwhelmingly positive response I’ve had to this project. I am beyond disappointed and frustrated with Jagex, and I am so very sorry that, after this long journey, I’m not able to share this project with you.”

Players frustrated by Jagex’s actions and the move to alter the third-party guidelines for the game held a sit-in protest in Falador’s town square.

Source: Reddit, Old School RuneScape, PC Gamer, Kotaku. Thanks Ravenael and PlasmaJohn!
Update
Following the uproar, Jagex is apparently now trying to work out a way to allow the mod to operate until its own launch, which probably should’ve been done before the internet noticed.

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Jeremy Barnes

Why ask them to stop before you have something to release?

agemyth 😩
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agemyth 😩

Because if it is good and popular it becomes competition. In the free market you have to stamp out (or buy) these kinds of threats before they have a chance to catch on.

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Darkedone02

It don’t have to be a competition if it’s the same game, they should work together in a joint effort to release something that the fans are wanting for. IF there is a demand, supply it, not fight against it.

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Scott Shaler

This is sad… been playing on and off since 06. The Runelite mod would only update the visuals, jager would still get the membership fees…. So wtf is Jagex’s problem? Oh wait, they have to have every aspect of the game under their greedy thumb!

port13
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port13

we can put down our pitchforks, sounds like they’ve reversed course?

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Bruno Brito

They reversed course BECAUSE of the pitchforks.

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Darkedone02

They really need to keep in mind what their community wants, and try not to make anymore mistakes like they did to this, work with them not against them. Fun fact, they probably know more about the games then the developers themselves.

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Rav3na3l

Here’s the thing that absolutely enrages me. Jagex knew for at least a year and a half this was in development and chose to stop it right before release. Jagex management has a history of being filled with absolutely painful ignorance.

The saddest part too is I’ve seen Mod Ash take pummel after pummel on Twitter when Ash was nowhere near the decision. I wish the people that actually made these decision were the one to feel the brutality of the playerbase, not people like Ash trying their best to keep it together.

Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

We’ve updated with Jagex’s latest statement.

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Bruno Brito

What i enjoyed most about that reddit thread is the RS fans acknowledging that Jagex is completely incapable of delivering a good client, and that RuneLite will prolly be better than anything they make, be it because of incompetence, or unwillingness.

Everyone wants the code leaked. Tear down that wall. Fuck Jagex.

Fisty
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Fisty

What a boneheaded mistake! The modders and player community are much tighter than companies think and that bond only strengthens their relationship to the game. Fools.