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Old School RuneScape taken down due to pickpocketing bug, now back online
I was worried this was going to become a permanent delisting situation but fortunately, the team at Jagex were able to roll the game back to a previous version and restore functionality. This all happened within the span of a few hours while I was at work or I'd have had a proper news article on the main page. You can read the jist of the nasty billionaire bug below and check out the complete news post on RuneScape.com for the full story.
There was a lot of speculation as to what the bug was, and what was causing it. So in the interest of transparency we'd like to take some time to explain the issue. One of the team was implementing the code for the pickpocketing update. This involved producing stackable pouches that are treated as being coins. On death, the aim was to convert them into real coins, partly so that a PKer could get the value if applicable.
When converting a stack of items into a stack of coins, it's appropriate to check that the calculation doesn't overflow the max integer limit of the game's language (2.1 billion). Unfortunately, the logic used for this calculation was incorrect, and when executed on stacks of other items (not the pouch itself) the result was to convert the stack to 2.1b coins.
Regrettably, although the pouches were found to be acting correctly during testing, the flaw affecting other items was not spotted as it was not expected to have changed. Old School RuneScape has never experienced a rollback of any sorts before, and to set about restoring the game to an earlier state (prior to the bug) was an immense undertaking.