- This is an article about the basics of RuneScape 2. For detailed information, visit the RuneScape Wiki.
RuneScape 2 (now known as just RuneScape and often abbreviated as RS2) was the successor to RuneScape Classic. RuneScape 2 was released as a separate version of RuneScape that was its own individual game and not connected to RuneScape Classic (aside from certain aspects). Jagex (the makers of RuneScape) decided to do this because the developers wanted to completely re-write the game engine. Aside from the new game engine, RuneScape 2 generally had the same elements and features as RuneScape Classic prior to the release. However, the change was big enough that Jagex opened a beta version of RuneScape 2 before it was officially released.
Since the release of RuneScape 2, RuneScape Classic has not been updated and has not been given new content as Jagex has devoted their time to focus on RuneScape 2 which they typically updated once per week. Because of this, RuneScape 2 was much more vast in comparison to RuneScape Classic and featured a multitude of new content such as new skills, minigames and quests.
In 2013, Jagex relaunched an archived version of RuneScape 2 from 2007, calling it Old School Runescape.
As RuneScape Classic became older, Jagex felt that the graphics and game engine were becoming outdated and that they could greatly improve it. Instead of gradually updating the game engine of RuneScape Classic, Jagex re-wrote the entire game engine and planned to release it as its own version of RuneScape, separate from RuneScape Classic. This next version of RuneScape is known as RuneScape 2.
RuneScape 2 Beta
On 1 December 2003, Jagex released a beta version of RuneScape 2 that was only accessible to RuneScape members. In this beta version, players began with no items and Jagex warned that any items gained would be lost when RuneScape 2 was officially released. The beta was mainly for helping Jagex find bugs and errors in RuneScape 2 and Jagex persuaded the members testing RuneScape 2 to send bug reports of any glitches they came across. At the time of RuneScape 2 Beta, a lengthy list of fixed glitches could be found on the front page of the RuneScape website regularly.
Within the last few weeks before RuneScape 2 was officially released, Jagex opened the RuneScape 2 beta for nonmembers so that any other existing glitches would sure to be found and submitted to Jagex because the majority of RuneScape players were nonmembers.
RuneScape 2 was officially released for both members and nonmembers on 29 March 2004. With this launch, RuneScape 2 became referred to as just RuneScape while the old version of RuneScape became RuneScape Classic.
Before players could log in to RuneScape 2, they were given the option to transfer their items from RuneScape Classic to RuneScape 2 and their stats were automatically transferred. With this, Jagex warned that they would be discontinuing updating RuneScape Classic and that each player would only be given one choice to transfer their items over. With many bugs gone from players testing the beta, RuneScape 2 received generally positive response from players and the player population of RuneScape Classic began to decline drastically. The launch of RuneScape 2 brought some new content with it, most notably being the runecrafting skill. Another significant change was that duelling became available for nonmembers but can only be done in a designated area known as the Duel Arena.
RuneScape 2 had a much wider range of content than RuneScape Classic and it featured seven additional skills, as well as hundreds of new quests, new monsters, areas, minigames and other.
In early RuneScape 2, bots started becoming more and more noticeable. With real world trading and macroing becoming more and more of an issue, Jagex released some of the most controversial significant changes to RuneScape 2. These updates included the removal of unrestricted PvP in the Wilderness, and the addition of a trade limit. Both of these have eventually been removed when Jagex implemented some new systems to battle macroing, such as Botwatch.
The Effect on RuneScape Classic
Players that left RuneScape Classic for RuneScape 2 upon the release will find their skill levels maintained from where they left off in RuneScape Classic. They will also find items in their bank account if they did not transfer them to RuneScape 2 because the bank accounts between RuneScape Classic and RuneScape 2 are not connected. The friends list and ignore list are the only linked features between RuneScape Classic and RuneScape 2 and besides that, they are entirely separate versions of RuneScape.
With Jagex's focus turned towards RuneScape 2, RuneScape Classic became a somewhat safe zone for macroers, to which Jagex would react with a mass ban of hundreds of players during the few months after RuneScape 2 was released.
On 4 August 2005, Jagex discontinued the free version of RuneScape Classic for good, where it still remains inaccessible to this day for free players. On 15 January 2006, only players who had logged in between 4 August 2005 and 15 January 2006 could play RuneScape Classic, meaning that members could not access RuneScape Classic unless they had logged in during that time frame. This was due to a number of problems, one being that Jagex simply decided that RuneScape Classic's uptake imposed a heavy cost on hosting the servers, since it is no longer updated. On 20 November 2007, Jagex closed the RuneScape Classic forums to non-RSC players.
Jagex has since then reopened RuneScape Classic to members four times (in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2016).
Today, RuneScape Classic only has a few hundred active players which is a very small fraction of entire RuneScape playerbase. Botting is still an issue in RuneScape Classic today and Jagex appears to have little interest in the game any more and players evidently breaking the rules tend to get away with it.
Important updates to RuneScape 2
RuneScape High Detail
RuneScape High Detail, also known as RSHD, was a large update to graphics in RuneScape 2, released on 1 July 2008. It included the implementation of more detailed textures, realistic lighting, shadows and fog. The game applet could itself be resized as well. An optional fullscreen mode was also introduced, initially only available to members.
Evolution of Combat
The Evolution of Combat, also known as EOC, was a major update to combat system in RuneScape 2, released on 20 November 2012. It completely rebalanced the combat triangle and introduced new combat mechanics such as abilities and adrenaline. An action bar was also introduced, aimed as a customisable interface of shortcuts for many combat- and skilling related activities. Evolution of Combat directly affected many areas of gameplay and was a highly controversial update.
RuneScape 3, also known as RS3, was a massive update to RuneScape's graphics and audio, launched on 22 July 2013. Among the features included were an overhaul of the game's interfaces, controller support and improved audio. RuneScape 3 is the current version of RuneScape, supported and updated on a weekly basis.
The release of the Evolution of Combat update in RuneScape 2 and subsequent launch of RuneScape 3 had little, if any, impact on RuneScape Classic. A small part of RS2 and RSC's playerbase moved to Old School RuneScape at the beginning of 2013.
Old School RuneScape
Old School RuneScape, also known as OSRS, or 2007scape, is Jagex's official term for a previous version of the RuneScape game that was introduced in 2013 from a backup of the RuneScape source code as it had been on 10 August 2007.