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Andrew Gower
Born December 2, 1978 (1978-12-02) (age 31)
Nationality British
Alma mater Bachelor of Arts
University of Cambridge[1]
Occupation Co-founder of Jagex Ltd., and lead developer of RuneScape
Net worth GBP£99 million (US$165 million) with Paul Gower (2009)[2]

Andrew Christopher Gower (born 2 December 1978)[1] is a British video game developer and co-founder of Cambridge-based Jagex Ltd, the company he founded with Paul Gower and Constant Tedder. He is noted for writing the MMORPG RuneScape with the assistance of his brother Paul Gower. He remains its lead developer.[3][4]

Contents

Career

Early career

During his youth, Gower spent his spare time creating computer programs, and in 1997, he started as a freelance Java programmer.[5] From 1995 and 1996 Andrew created Parallax Painter, Battle Zone and Destruction Imminent (published by Goodmans) on the Atari ST under the name Cunning & Devious Games. This group consisted of Andrew, Paul and Ian Gower as well as Peter Oliver.

Jagex

Gower then began trading as Jagex and created a series of Java games from 1996 to 1999, most of which appeared on the website Games Domain. This included several single player games and a 3D castle with a variety of classic multiplayer games. Vertigo is currently available from the Jagex website and some of the others, such as Flea Circus, have been recreated for the FunOrb website.[6][7][8][9] According to Jagex documents from Companies House, Andrew owns a 38.35% stake in Jagex.

Andrew Gower is best known for the massively multi-player online game RuneScape, which he created in January 1999 as an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge.[3][10] Along with Paul Gower and Constant Tedder, Andrew founded Jagex to develop the game. A graphical and engine rewrite was completed in 2004, which was named RuneScape 2 in development and is now simply called RuneScape.[11] The original version of RuneScape is now known as RuneScape Classic or RSC. In July 2008 RuneScape was updated to use more textures, thus creating RuneScape HD. Jagex had collected information on users' computer specifications in order to develop RuneScape HD. Runescape was stated to have the largest number of subscribers of all free MMORPGs in the Guinness Book of World Records in 2008.[12] In October 2009, Jagex Ltd was named the "UK Developer of the Year 2009" at the Golden Joysticks awards.[13][14]

Personal life

The 2007 Sunday Times Rich List claims that Andrew and Paul Gower are the 654th richest men in the UK, worth £113 million (US $217 million).[15][16] In 2009, the Sunday Times listed them as the 566th richest men, worth an estimated £99 million.[2] The Daily Telegraph also listed Andrew and Paul Gower as the 11th richest young entrepreneurs in the UK.[17]

References

  1. ^ a b Cambridge University Reporter (2000-07-12). "Congregations of the Regent House on 29 June, 30 June, and 1 July 2000". University of Cambridge. http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/reporter/1999-2000/weekly/5816/25.html. Retrieved 2007-10-14. 
  2. ^ a b "Sunday Times Rich List 2009: Andrew and Paul Gower". London: The Sunday Times. 2009. http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/specials/rich_list/rich_list_2009/article6131979.ece. Retrieved 2009-08-26. 
  3. ^ a b "Rune to move". The Guardian (Guardian Unlimited). December 11, 2003. http://technology.guardian.co.uk/online/story/0,3605,1103882,00.html. Retrieved 2007-03-25. 
  4. ^ "Jagex Credits List". Jagex Ltd. http://www.runescape.com/kbase/viewarticle.ws?article_id=746#credits. Retrieved 2009-07-25. 
  5. ^ "TheUnofficial Andrew Gower Archive". The Unofficial Andrew Gower Archive. http://gowerarchive.googlepages.com/documents. Retrieved 2009-01-05. 
  6. ^ "Single Player Web Games". Games Domain. 2002. http://web.archive.org/web/20020614124155/www.gamesdomain.co.uk/onlinegames/othergames.html. Retrieved 2007-03-25. 
  7. ^ "Jagex Software :: Minigames". Jagex Ltd. http://www.jagex.com/corporate/Minigames/minigames.ws. Retrieved 2007-12-27. 
  8. ^ "DeviousMUD". http://deviousmud.tripod.com/. Retrieved 2007-03-25. 
  9. ^ "The Unofficial Andrew Gower Archive". The Unofficial Andrew Gower Archive. 2007. http://gowerarchive.googlepages.com/. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  10. ^ "TheUnofficial Andrew Gower Archive". The Unofficial Andrew Gower Archive. http://gowerarchive.googlepages.com/documents. Retrieved 2009-01-05. 
  11. ^ "RS2 Launched!". Jagex Ltd. March 29, 2004. http://news.runescape.com/newsitem.ws?id=204. Retrieved 2008-04-06. 
  12. ^ Guinness World Records 2008. Guinness. August 7, 2007. ISBN 1904994199. 
  13. ^ "Golden Joysticks: Full list of winners". BBC. 2009-10-30. http://news.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/hi/technology/newsid_10000000/newsid_10002600/10002660.stm. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  14. ^ Gower, Andrew (2009-10-30). "Golden Joysticks Award Result response from Jagex Ltd". Jagex Ltd. http://services.runescape.com/m=news/newsitem.ws?id=2393. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  15. ^ "2007 Sunday Times Rich List: Andrey and Paul Gower". London: The Sunday Times. 2007. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/richlist/person/0,,47604,00.html. Retrieved 2007-10-27. 
  16. ^ "Top 20 websites run by people under 30". RetireAt21. http://www.retireat21.com/top-young-entrepreneurs/. Retrieved 2008-01-19. 
  17. ^ Tomkinson, Martin (February 2008). "The UKs richest toung entrepreneurs.". telegraph.co.uk. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/2954734/The-UKs-richest-young-entrepreneurs-30-11.html. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 

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