Old School RuneScape players upend a 16-year-old minigame when they realise the cops can't possibly arrest all of them

A party of runescape adventurers
(Image credit: Jagex)

"Organisation," wrote Vladimir Lenin, "is the strength of the working class. Without mass organisation, the proletariat is nothing. Organised, it is everything. Organisation means the unity of action, the unity of practical activity."

Lenin wrote those words in 1907, about 106 years too early to apply them to Old School RuneScape, but I'm delighted to report that players have now independently rediscovered the principles therein. As reported by GamesRadar, OSRS players have made the world-historic discovery that they can totally bamboozle one of the MMO's 16-year-old minigames if they all band together, using their collective power to overwhelm the shaky guard AI and ensuring everyone—not just a talented and lucky few—receives the rewards.

The minigame in question is called the Sorceress' Garden, first added to RuneScape (before it was "old-school") in 2007, which tasks players with stealthing their way through a leafy labyrinth on a quest to steal sq'irks (a kind of fruit). Ordinarily, players would do this on their own, sneaking past the garden's guards and laboriously accumulating fruit. Ordinarily. But now, OSRS players have figured out that none of us is as powerful as all of us. 16 years in, the entire sq'irking structure has been upended by the realisation that they can't arrest all of us

They are powerless against the masses boys. from r/2007scape

That's right. Put enough boots on the ground in the Sorceress' Garden and the guards quickly become overwhelmed. As you can see in Reddit user Mookie_Merkk's video above, the elemental cops that inhabit the garden just don't know what to do when the doors give way to the hammer blows of a hundred calloused hands. There are, by my reckoning, six guards in that maze versus an enormous number of players. OSRS servers can hold up to 2,000 players at a time, and will hide other players from view on overcrowded servers to save performance and data, so it's hard to tell just how many, but it's a lot. I like to imagine they're all singing the Warszawianka.

It is, at least to me, very funny that RuneScape players have somehow upended a minigame that's old enough to get its own passport by the principles of revolutionary organisation, and some of them report having the time of their lives doing it. 

"Most fun I've had thieving in a while," wrote a Reddit user named mtd14, "This with some PP or Stealing Artefacts to mix things up will probably encourage me to get to [thieving level] 80, if it sticks around."

"Like wildebeasts crossing a river in Africa," wrote RuneScaper and poet Airp0w, in true understanding and appreciation of the beauty that comes from an oppressed underclass (RuneScape fruit thieves) casting off their shackles by their mutual trust and faith in one another.

Perhaps most surprising, though, is that OSRS developer Jagex seems very into the new sq'irking meta. One of the game's devs posted to Reddit that the team has "Absolutely no issue with Sq'irk'in, keep it going!" So enamoured are the devs of this transcendent display of collective action that Jagex has created two new themed worlds—"Sq'irkin'" and "Sq'irkin' Too"—for players to team up with their comrades and take down the OSRS sq'irk aristocracy themselves. And they say revolutions always end in failure.

Correction: This piece originally said there was a "double-digit" number of players in the video posted to Reddit, but OSRS players have since informed me that the game works by hiding other players from view on overcrowded servers, meaning there were likely many more. This has now been amended.

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.