Alex’s Analysis – System Updates

posted by on 26th June 2010, at 1:39am

I just completed the poll on system updates, and that brought back memories. Yeah, that’s strange. Memories of the system updates. I know. But I’m a strange person. Deal with it.

If you’re an avid Runescape player, I’m sure you’ll have encountered them at some point in your life. A timer will suddenly appear onscreen and your clan chat will start buzzing with either excitement or rage. System Update in 10 minutes, counting down by the second, and once the timer hits 0, you are automatically logged out of the world while the game goes out of order for about 2-10 minutes.

Personally, I think they’re exciting. Once it appears, I start playing this dark, end-is-nigh themed trance song in my head (Legend of Zelda Majora’s Mask – 6 hours remain song, for example) and I rush to get whatever I can done. Be it a clue scroll, a level, or simply to get from point A to point B. Adding this time constraint just makes it a lot more intense.

And hey, it means that once I get back online, nothing will be the same ever again. Technically, the world is falling apart around us. All Jagex has to do is make the screen start dimming a dark shade of blue and shake the screen with a greater intensity the more time has passed. That would be wicked *Wink wink*.

Yeah, childish desire. What are ya gonna do?

I find they are getting a little more clustered nowadays. It used to be once every week, which I figured out the timing and was able to meet several in a row. This would be the case even if there was a graphical glitch or a quest problem, unless it was incredibly severe. For example, once the digsite quest first came out, it was impossible to get a specific key item, preventing anybody from completing it. That caused a massive bout of players asking and begging for that specific item, which was rather entertaining at the time.

Nowadays, a system update will appear almost at random, stave the new game for a few hours, and then in comes another one to fix all the immediate bugs and glitches. Then perhaps soon after a third comes out to fine-tune it up, and then we don’t see it for who-knows-how-long. And we have to check out the minor update list in the forums just to see exactly what happened.

Of course, the fun begins after you log back on after the update. I first check out my quest list, and if there’s nothing new there, then I travel around the Runescape world, searching for a new area like a real explorer. And if I still can’t find anything, than I check out the front page, find out it was simply a technical issue with the sound, and shrug it off. Ah well, maybe next time.

So now you’re probably asking: why the heck are you reminiscing so much over system updates?

It’s these little things in life that you remember the most; that triggers the memories of your early years and wonder about how much time had passed since. If you don’t have a past, what good is having a future? Stop reading this and go do something! Go out and invite some friends over, take a jog or bike ride to the nearest park, and just play catch for a while. Trust me when I say that it will all be totally worth it.

Yeah, that’s it. Cheers!

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