Jagex wins landmark victory against bot programmers
Damages awarded after Snellman brothers judged to have harmed Runescape
Cambridge studio Jagex, producers of Runescape, have won a landmark legal case against a pair of brothers who had developed bot and macro tools specifically for the free-to-play online RPG.
Mark and Eric Snellman, trading as Impulse Software, were told to pay damages and refrain from any further bot programming, for Runescape or any other Jagex game, assisting other to do so or discussing the court case.
Impulse Software was also ordered to give up all code pertaining to the botting project, as well as all customer details.
No figures were given for the compensation, but Runescape CEO Mark Gerhard said that the pursuit of the pair had been a seven figure enterprise.
"We began the legal action against the Snellmans over two years ago as a part of our ongoing commitment to ridding RuneScape of bots and gold farmers," said Gerhard in a press statement.
"Faced with this significant challenge we have continued to demonstrate that we will never shy away from difficult battles, we don't compromise on taking the right course of action and, regardless of the time, money or effort involved we always do what it takes in order to protect our community.
"We have spared no expense fighting this case, as demonstrated by the seven figure bill this action has cost, but the point of this and other cases of its kind, is that we will continue bring to justice those who set out to harm the game or our beloved community. We are delighted to say that we have convincingly neutered them after a very long battle."
Jagex maintains a specific team to constantly update Runescape's defences against botting, macro-programs and gold farming which Gerhard says he hopes will continue to be a deterrent against any future attempts.