Jagex announced today both RuneScape and Old School RuneScape, the iconic MMORPGs, will be coming to mobile and tablet devices. The two titles will be the first mainstream and fully-established Western MMORPGs to deliver the complete MMO experience to PC and mobile platforms and feature full cross-platform play, allowing players to jump from PC to mobile platforms and back again. Old School RuneScape is set to debut on mobile platforms this winter, with RuneScape to follow.
Extending RuneScape and Old School RuneScape's PC gameplay to mobile, with cross-platform play represents a massive advancement for RuneScape's legions of players. Players will be able to log out from their PC when they need to be AFK, and launch the mobile app to continue their adventure on the move, picking up from the in-game moment that they left it on PC… and vice versa.
Players will be able to play both games just on their mobile devices if they choose, enabling past players who have moved from PC to mobile as a preferred platform, to reconnect with the game and their characters once again. This is a pretty fantastic move for Jagex, and should prove interesting for players as well. I doubt many other MMOs will follow this path, as the difference in system requirements for PC and mobile on other titles is a bit greater than what both of Jagex's MMOs require. Maybe we'll see EverQuest make the jump to mobile, however.
"As a MMO player, you ideally want to play at any time of the day or night no matter where you are. We know that our players' time is precious, and that's why want to give all RuneScape players, both present and past, the opportunity to play RuneScape on the go," said Neil McClarty, Senior Product Director, Jagex. "The fact that they'll be able to play on their PC, leave the PC, and pick up their mobile and continue playing where you left your character will be a big deal for our players – there really will be no need for any XP waste."
"This is a real step change for MMORPGs and a signal of Jagex's intent to continue to push the boundaries of live games," said Phil Mansell, Chief Operating Officer at Jagex. "The RuneScape titles will become the first mainstream and established Western MMORPGs on mobile in full and the first to deliver cross-platform play between PC and mobile platforms. We believe in taking our games to wherever our players want them; recent player surveys showed an overwhelming 90% of active players and 64% of former players telling us of their very high intent-to-play on mobile. Our innovative approach to mobile is also evidence of our ambitions in the mobile sector, and a further indication of our investment in extending the RuneScape franchise to additional devices and territories."
Old School RuneScape is probably the version of the game that you remember best, and is the version of the game played during the Deadman tournaments. Now, whether you'll be able to play Deadman on your mobile version of Old School RuneScape, we do not yet know. I've reached out to Jagex for comment on that and will update this story when I hear back.