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This page documents the various server blackouts that have occurred during the history of RuneScape. A server blackout is the unexpected crash of a server, typically resulting in all players being logged out for an extended period of time. Those listed on this page are events which affected most if not all game servers and may have affected other RuneScape facilities such as the forums and main website.

Server blackouts are generally caused by a technical faliure at Jagex and as such players can do nothing but wait until the problem is fixed. In some cases, a roll-back has occurred, but that is rare. During a server blackout, worlds on the select screen are listed as having 0 players, rather than being Offline or having a specific number. This occurs because when a server is deliberately taken offline, the game screen is changed to reflect this. However on an unexpected crash, the login server simply knows that nobody is connected to that server.

In the sections below, each blackout is documented, along the reasons given for the blackout. All times are UTC. (Note that this is one hour behind British Summer Time, or BST, during the summer due to daylight savings.)

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First server blackout of 2007

The First Server Blackout of 2007 was a pair of events that happened on 2 and 3 June 2007 in which all RuneScape servers were shut down for several hours. RSC servers remained online however, and received a flood of RS2 players, reaching 1,000 logged in on both RSC worlds combined.


Mod Craddock explained:

We do apologise. We had experienced a slight server outage which had removed all of the players from the game. This was done as a safeguard to ensure that our players did not lose any game data. We will continue to monitor this throughout the night but we suspect that this will be an isolated incident. Thank you for your patience regarding this matter.


Aftermath

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When the servers went back online, players were confused and were unsure about why this happened. Since it was the first blackout many players had encountered, rumours that a hacker manipulated the servers were everywhere. A group of players in World 66 in Falador lied that the Kalphite Queen appeared in Falador and when players stormed into Falador, a group of mages attempted to telegroup players to the Ice Plateau in level 50 Wilderness. Many lower leveled players who were unaware that the Ice Plateau was located in deep Wilderness accepted the teleother and were killed. This event was a clear example of luring.

Second server blackout of 2007

The Second server blackout of 2007 occurred on 15 July 2007. It caused players to lose what they had done in the past hour thus causing several rants and riots in game, most notably the riot in World 66, Falador. Jagex moderators stated on the forums that this was due to a Jagex ISP outage, and that they would take steps to decrease the chance of this occurring in the future, as it was the second blackout within two weeks.

Third server blackout of 2007

The Third server blackout of 2007 occurred starting at 01:28 (UTC) and ending at 04:33 on 19 November, 2007. It was caused by a hardware failure at Jagex's main hosting facility; for some reason the router/firewall broke and stopped forwarding traffic to the internet. As well as the actual RuneScape 2 game including the German beta version, all other aspects of RuneScape which require logging in such as forums and account management went offline as well, with the exception of RuneScape Classic. The friends list server went down approximately half an hour before the servers blacked out. Shortly after the servers came back on, a riot broke out in World 66. Mod Zach showed up to talk to players.

As with all other riots, players congregated in Falador centre shouting phrases such as, "Shave the whales", "Ice me", "Jagex Failed", along with many other phrases from previous riots. The Retribution prayer was also seen during this riot; players would activate the prayer to show their anger with Jagex. In Frozen Waste Plateau, the riot continued.

Trivia

  • The last person remaining was in world 120, and the runner up to the last person was in world 59.
  • The last 3 servers to have 1,000 players or more remaining were worlds 144, 6, and 2 respectively.
  • Approximately 50 people were being logged out per second.
  • Several players have reported that the items withdrawn or taken out of the bank have been duplicated. (e.g., a partyhat is taken out of a bank. The blackout occurs, causing the partyhat to appear in the inventory, with the partyhat formally withdrawn from the bank still being in the bank) This glitch is yet to be fixed, and still occurs in blackouts after this one.

First server blackout of 2008

The first server blackout of 2008 was the result of RuneScape and all its servers going offline. The official forums and other parts of the website also went offline. It occurred on 17 January 2008, around 18:50 UTC. The servers came back on at around 19:05. It is not yet known why this happened.

Second server blackout of 2008

The second server blackout of 2008 occurred at about 05:30, 19 January 2008 (UTC). All players were kicked off the servers, although the login servers were down for some time before. Website features were also offline, like in every other server blackout. This blackout was short-lived, however, as the servers came online again at about 06:00 UTC.

Third server blackout of 2008

The third server blackout of 2008 occurred at about 15:25 UTC on Friday, 13 June 2008. World 119 was the first server offline, and at about 15:34 all players were kicked from the worlds, though the login servers went down at 15:25.

During much of the blackout, the main page indicated that there were still 347 people playing the game, despite the fact that on the world selection list, all servers were listed as having zero players. This appeared to have been fixed at about 17:00 UTC. It was apparent that this was a bug, as there were not actually any players on the servers. The General and Tech Support forums user numbers went up and Jagex Mods (mainly Emilee), Forum Mods, and helpful players congregated, helping the confused players. Rumors began of a second RuneScape 666, which was of course not true.

This server blackout also affected FunOrb, being the first blackout since its launch. Most players were unable to play games, though some could still log into the games despite the blackout. Website features and the forums were also disabled as a result.

At about 17:00 UTC, the following was announced on the RuneScape main page:

"Telstra, one of our service providers, is currently experiencing technical difficulties. As a result, you will not be able to access the RuneScape game and a number of our website features. We apologise for any inconvenience caused, and we are assured our service provider is working hard to rectify this fault."

By 17:30 UTC, RuneScape was back online, with the exception of World 119, which was fixed later on and is currently back online.

Fourth server blackout of 2008

This server blackout occurred at 13:55 UTC on Tuesday, 1 July. Free servers, those which were British, crashed first, possibly due to Jagex's location in the United Kingdom. Every server after this blacked out, with evidence pointing to the July 2008 graphical update, as this was introduced only 20 minutes beforehand. As of 14:07 UTC on Tuesday, 1 July, the rants forum has 383 active users and growing. At 14:14 UTC on Tuesday, 1 July, the rants peaked at 452 users, then the number fell to 180 at 8:25 UTC and is still falling. Much like the update that caused the removal of player killing.

The servers were brought back online at approximately 14:25 UTC the same day. The Runescape Mainpage announced:

Due to the high volume of traffic and the size of today's update, RuneScape has experienced some technical difficulties. This has led to several worlds going offline and issues with the Grand Exchange. We are aware of these problems and they should be fixed shortly. We apologise for any inconvenience we may have caused you.

If you are struggling to download the client, please choose a world from the USA, as they have more bandwidth available. You can always switch to your favourite world once the client has downloaded.

Fifth server blackout of 2008

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This server blackout occurred after a system update around 14:00 UTC on Thursday, 17 July. The world selection screen was shown as ALL worlds, either Members or Free-to-play were unable to be selected. The text shown was: OFFLINE.

This was short-lived and was fixed and some servers started to come online again at around 14:13.

Sixth Server Blackout of 2008

This blackout occurred at October 23, 2:13pm (EST)/7:13pm (GMT). It partly came back up at 2:22pm (EST)/7:22pm (GMT), but eventually was fully running again. This was originally believed to be the H'ween update, but was some manner of blackout as it showed the same symptoms.

First blackout of 2009

Worlds 110, 111, 112, 115, 49, 81, and 50 had blacked out on February 25 2009. Many Members and Free-to-play worlds worldwide went offline at around 23:00 GMT, and those worlds which remained (around 20 or 30) logged out hundreds of players. This was caused by a mass bug that crashed several players at the time.


Second Blackout of 2009

On Tuesday, March 17 2009, after the quest, The Chosen Commander was released, RuneScape servers began crashing one by one. It started around 9:30 AM (Eastern Time). The server went offline at around 14:04 GMT On the 17 of March 2009. This lasted approximately 50 minutes (14:04-14:54 GMT), but popular servers in America and Canada, (including worlds 1 and 2) remained down until 16:13 GMT when many other servers again went offline, mostly members servers this time.

After losing connection with a downed server, players experienced problems with being unable to log in to another server, receiving the message "Your account has not logged out from its last session. Try again in a few minutes." even after 10 minutes or more had elapsed.

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