Botwatch is the name of the software Jagex uses to detect accounts using bots ingame. This system received a major update in September 2012 along with the release of Botany Bay. According to Mark Gerhard, Botwatch will be able to profile accounts and determine whether or not they are using botting software. Most other anti-botting measures have focused on protecting and obfuscating RuneScape's source code; Botwatch doesn't focus on breaking the code of the botting software but instead monitors an account's actions and determines whether or not it is human behavior. The Botwatch system will have the ability to ban players directly, making it the first automated banning system in RuneScape. This being said, Jagex is quite confident in this system and guarantees that all legitimate players will be safe. However, a major glitch did arise from an early flaw in the system, resulting in thousands of innocent players being wrongfully banned.
They can perform two animations when they get banned.
- They gasp for breath, choke, and then fall over. (Doing the Dramatic Death Emote.)
- They glow and start a cry emote, before a fireball burns from inside them and kills them from the inside out, finally making them explode.
Botwatch rogue banning glitchEdit
The Rogue Botwatch bans glitch was a major glitch that occurred on 27 September 2012, which resulted in the mass banning of several tens of thousands of accounts. Around 3:30 PM Jagex time, Botwatch began removing thousands of innocent players from the game and placing unappealable permanent bans on their accounts. It would teleport the players to many locations, including White Knights Castle and Wizard's tower. If an affected player dropped an item, it was instantly destroyed. Players could not trade or use the Grand Exchange. The glitch was fixed less than an hour after its discovery, and Mod Emilee issued a public apology about the issue and described its cause.
|“||Unfortunately, whilst updating our systems, a human error occurred which resulted in the accidental banning of a selection of online accounts. These bans have now been reverted and we will be rebooting the servers shortly to ensure that all accounts can log in as normal.||”|
Those who were affected later had the falsely issued offences (and accompanying punishments) manually removed, and were also given 20 free spins on the Squeal of Fortune as a goodwill gesture. Some players who were affected had a number of their stats partially drained upon logging back in, to the levels where they would typically be rolled back to if they were caught macroing and given a second chance. Their base levels remained the same as before the glitch occurred, however. This could be solved by waiting for them to restore to their normal levels, banking their items and intentionally dying, or, in members worlds, by drinking a dose or two of Super restore. Items that were dropped by affected players were not refunded.
The next day Mod Emilee confirmed the cause as a heuristic from the testing phase of the system which was accidentally turned on, and stated that barriers were put into place to prevent it from being turned on again.. In a Q&A session the following week, Mod MMG had stated that the number of affected accounts totaled around 40,000, and confirmed that each and every single affected account was unbanned.
However the system still isn't perfect as many innocent players are being falsely banned. Starting on March 15, 2013, players logging in from China and South Korea were mostly immediately and permanently banned, many of whom were completely innocent. This massively affected players in South Korea and China and discussion about this has taken place in several Chinese RuneScape forum. So far, there has been no response from Jagex.
- ^ Mod Emilee's post on the rogue bans, quick find code 15-16-748-64015981. RuneScape Official Forums.
- ^ Mod Emilee's post on the cause of the bans, quick find code 15-16-748-64015981, page 117. RuneScape Official Forums.
- ^ Future of RuneScape Q&A Transcript Mod MMG, question 30, post 2.