If you have a child and want to let them play without risk of being exposed to rude or adult comments you can always have them go onto worlds where only quick chat can be used. This allows them to have some form of communication with other players without free talk where many players have found ways around language blocks
If your kids are playing, definitely register for the paid subscription -- there is less danger when other users risk getting banned and losing their accounts for bad behavior. Other players will report users who behave badly and mods will evaluate the situation. Runescape has an automated chat filter that not only blocks profanity, it tries to block users from sharing personal information in the chats. So things like "password" or "where do you live" will be blocked. It's a useful way for kids to learn that things they consider innocent are actually things they can't discuss online with strangers.
There are adults playing, and there are people who will try to cheat, steal or hack to get other users' items. Make sure your kids have good passwords.
I highly recommend this game to any kid or adult. RuneScape is a really fun 3D game with millions of players (it wouldn't cause your kids to get addicted though). You can actually learn tons of things you could use in real life from a game like this. Spelling and grammar (most of the online community knows how to spell well), math (calculating), and much more.
RuneScape is also a very child friendly game. If you are under age, you will have to play on "worlds" that have Quick Chat. Playing on Quick Chat worlds lets your child communicate through a very big selection of common sentences. This way communication is made 100% safe. Even if you choose to let your child communicate freely, all curse words are filtered out into stars. To top it off, block specific people from communicating with you with the option to report someone for doing something offensive.
RuneScape is a NO DOWNLOADS game. Absolutely no downloads, except for the cache that any other game would store in your hard drive to make the game start up faster. The file name is .jagex_cache_32 and it's only 328 KB. No complicated installation process. Just go to the website, click play, and your adventure starts.
Since I am trying to teach everything I can in this review, I should include that this game IS free, but it comes with the option of paying for more features (membership). It costs approximately $5.95 a month. I loved being a member (as in being able to do exclusive things) every minute I played. Of course this is entirely optional. You can do many things in this game even without membership.
There may be a problem if you let your kid play this game, considering that there is very mild, but still existing violence. In this game you try to "level up" your skills, one of them being combat. I'm going to tell you the entire truth here. Combat will not be an issue unless you are a very, VERY strict parent who never wants to expose there kid to any type violence. All you do is use a sword and literally poke the opponent with it. When there opponent's health runs out, the opponent disappears. You can choose from using archery, elemental magic (as in fireballs and water splashes - ABSOLUTELY NOTHING LIKE BLACK MAGIC), and melee.
It is your choice if you want to let your kid play this game. I have given you the basic information about RuneScape, and you should be able to decide with the information I have given you.
If you want to learn more about RuneScape, go to "http://www.runescape.com/title.ws" or "http://www.runescape.com/parents.ws" (without the quotation marks).
For a picture of RuneScape gameplay, go to "http://mmohut.com/wp-content/gallery/runescape/runescape-gameplay.jpg" (without the quotation marks).
Great game. Impossible for viruses to spread through THE GAME. Not so sure bout the ads, though. Oh yeah, BTW, those who think that Jagex_cache_32 or Runescape_cache_32 are viruses, GET REAL!!! That file is put there so that the game loads faster, no viruses whatsoever. Also, the Runescape client doesn't contain viruses. Your anti virus software is probably picking it up at heuristics, because it's connecting to a specific IP online (specifically, the Runescape site). There's nothing bad on it.