Late yesterday evening, Jagex and Titan Publishing announced an official partnership to begin in 2023, that will see the publishing house work with the developer of RuneScape to produce comics, graphic novels, original fiction and even colouring books based on the MMORPG. Originally released back in 2001, RuneScape has remained a venerable franchise throughout the years and with the release of RuneScape mobile last year Jagex seem to finally think it’s time to push their IP cross-media once more.
This won’t be the first time that RuneScape has made the jump from computer to page, as Titan Books previously published and sold novels based on the game, such as Betrayal at Falador and Legacy of Blood. However, this marks a seemingly much more major collaboration with footholds in multiple mediums. Co-publishers at Titan, Vivian Cheung and Nick Landau were enthusiastic about the collaboration, “We have been following the RuneScape IP for many years and are thrilled to now be working with the brilliant and creative team at Jagex.”
Colouring within the lines
RuneScape has seen massive success throughout the years and remained a pop-culture staple on the internet, with the release of RuneScape Mobile pushing the game to an even wider audience. Without the need for a PC to play the game, even if virtually any computer can run the deceptively simple MMORPG, Jagex clearly thinks that this will precipitate a whole new wave of users and audience members to engage with their IP. Mobile is particularly noted, with iOS and Android mentioned alongside PC in the announcement.
Titan Publishing have also been pushing outside of their usual market in recent years, with the creation of Titan Manga to capitalise on interest in the Japanese comics medium. Given Jagex reported record profits for the previous year it’s no surprise they want to capitalise on this and begin pushing RuneScape more heavily. Diversifying their revenue and attracting a wider audience to engage with the fantasy world of Gielinor.
Although some may not think of RuneScape being as prestigious as larger games such as the ever popular World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV, the game has always been pushing slowly into new business territory, only after having a solid base. As far back as 2008, Jagex were looking East to expand the game, including in India which it did in 2009 via Zapak games. India being a country which has recently become a massive contender in the mobile gaming market.