developer Jagex put the fate of its browser MMO RuneScape in the hands of its players. Several years ago, in an effort to combat the game's growing RMT problem, Jagex placed severe restrictions on PvP and the trading of items. To make transferring gold harder, Jagex made changes to deny trades in which one party gained a significantly higher value of items and gold than the other. Limits were also placed on the stakes players could fight over in one-on-one duels. The biggest changes came to the wilderness, RuneScape's open PvP area. Wilderness PvP was completely removed in order to remove the possible use of PvP looting mechanics to trade large quantities of gold.
Jagex opened a public referendum and vote to ask players if they wanted wilderness PvP and free trade to return, and over a million players answered with a resounding "YES!" Just over a week ago, we interviewed RuneScape's lead designer Mark Ogilvie on the details of the changes and how they'll affect players. In an announcement today, Mark confirmed that those changes are now in effect, along with some tweaks to the gravestone and drop party systems. If you're a fan of RuneScape, stay tuned to Massively's RuneScape coverage for our upcoming guide on making use of the new free trade and wilderness PvP options.