The fantasy MMO Runescape (opens in new tab) launched on January 4, 2001, which means that as of today it is 20 years old. That's absolutely ancient in videogame terms, and so developer Jagex is marking the big birthday with a "Grand Party" that will feature anniversary-themed content that will run throughout the year.
The fun begins at Lumbridge Crater—"the gigantic hole behind Lumbridge Castle," for those unfamiliar with the territory—where the Wise Old Man will be handing out an exclusive 20th Anniversary Outfit and Cape to everyone who asks nicely. Players will also be granted different buffs and rewards, and earn a ten percent XP bonus, while they're in the crater.
Week-long events will be held throughout January, beginning with the Celebration of Quests, which will challenge players with three mini-quests featuring "iconic characters from the Runescape roster." That too will be accessible via the Lumbridge Crater, and will offer special rewards including XP lamps and 20th anniversary cake. Even bigger, a four-part anniversary quest called Once Upon a Time will run throughout 2021 to celebrate Runescape's past and present, "and even provide a glimpse of its future."
"The next 12 months will welcome a whole host of celebratory in-game content, including a multi-part anniversary questline that takes players deep into RuneScape’s past, present, and future," Jagex said. "Plus, adventurers can enjoy a year-long epic story arc in which the Elder Gods, the beings who forged Gielinor, rise once again."
Old School Runescape (opens in new tab) is getting in on the action too, with an anniversary event of its own that will have players battling demons and dragons alongside the Green Gnome Child. 2021 will also see the arrival of Old School Runescape on Steam—the main game debuted on Steam in October 2020 (opens in new tab)—and the addition of clan support, Group Ironman, and other anniversary-related content. The full launch of Runescape on mobile devices will also take place later this year.
And despite its age, Runescape is apparently doing very well for itself: Jagex said Runescape recently set an all-time peak concurrent player record of more than 173,000.
Runescape's 20th anniversary "Grand Party" is live now. Full details on the event, which will also give players the chance to throw money at "commemorative collectibles" including pins, a "RuneScape: Original Soundtrack Classics" album, and an illustrated hardcover history book created in conjunction with Dark Horse called RuneScape: The First 20 Years, are up at jagex.com (opens in new tab).