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Post Merge Names

HelsaHelsa
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edited August 29, 2022 in General Chat
With the final merge, that created Erinn, we had another round of name collisions, with some relieved faces and some ... not. Rather than a nebulous "fix this" post in "Feedback and Suggestions", I thought creating a thread, in "General Chat" first, to gauge and discuss the problem and hopefully make a set of more specific ideas about this might be of use. So, I'll get the ball rolling.

1. Why is it happening? In databases you have types of objects called records. The individual pieces of information in them are called fields. A, real world, example of a record is a driver's licence. An individual instance of such a record is YOUR drivers licence. A field is, say, your first name. What do you do if you have two records that are identical but, nonetheless, are two separate instances of the record object; how do you tell them apart? They have to have a field or set of fields whose values are unique in the database. These are called Primary Keys. Your drivers licence I.D. number is it's primary key. In Mabinogi, the Primary Key was the name, of your character, pet, partner, fynni pet, and homestead, along with your server of residence: Mari, Ruairi, Tarlach, Alexina, Nao, and Erinn. So when the merges happened, Goku of Ruairi, and Goku of Tarlach, would both become Goku of Nao. To make the record unique, Nexon used the following kludge: they became Goku+Ruairi of Nao and Goku+Tarlach of Nao. They didn't include Alexina in that merge so when it was merged in, a couple three years later, after having not used the time to create a better solution, that business happened all over again. Some people didn't really care, most did.

2. What can be done to fix it? There have been several suggestions:
a. Create a Last Name field, so that first and last name must be unique. This would solve the problem but in terms of folks complaining would also just be kicking the can down the road. There can only be one Son/Goku. There's more leeway but eventually you have Sun1248/Goku. Essentially this is what we had before any merge but if we're visiting the Primary Key problem, we can do better.
b. since there's only one server then the server field is redundant. Why not hard code "Erinn" into the log-in server thus freeing up an already existing field for other use? There are two problems with this: the lesser one is that it would be a mess changing things around to turn an existing field into something else but the main problem is that there is NOT just one server left; there are two. The other is the testing server. So, the server field is not to be tampered with.
c. if a drivers licence has a unique ID number then why not make a field called, oh I don't know say, "I.D. Number" and write code to keep it unique. Why? Because they don't need to; there is already a field called record number. It starts at 1 and increments by 1 every time a new character is created and so is automatically unique. With the merge that created Nao, Nexon started with Mari, so they all kept their original record numbers. Next merged in was Ruairi, so their record numbers begin at the highest Mari record number +1, finally, Tarlach was put in at Mari+Ruairi+1. in the couple three years that Nao existed, natural-born Naowegians started incrementing at Mari+Ruairi+Tarlach+1. When the second merge happened, Alexina was merged into Nao, So all Naowegians kept their record numbers and Alexina started at Nao+1. Natural-born Erinnites began at Nao+Alexina+1. So these are already unique and will remain so until the field rolls over at 4,294,967,295.

3. How is using record number "doing better"? It allows for unlimited reuse of any name; we could all be Goku or Son Goku, if we wanted.

4. Okay, so the computer can tell different Goku's apart, how do I? By using record number. In game they could call it I.D. Number or maybe be cute and call it "Fone Number" or just use a single-character icon that looks like an old rotary telephone. Press-alt and it shows a character's Fone Number. In the chat log it gives the character's name and Fone Number. Notes sent have the character name and Fone Number. When trying to note or mail characters you just enter their Fone Number. this is just like the real world in the pre-speed-dial era. Unless, of course, they create a speed-dial feature.

Comments

  • NioughtNiought
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    I feel like it'd be tedious having to type up someones id number to note or mail them, but that being said...id's would help a lot with the issue, cause everyone's still different from each other, names aside. Would make sense if it only popped up in the character box after right clicking a player though, since it would be too stuffy to have with the names when pressing alt.

    On a side note though, I feel like the name fixing thing should be free instead. That would also really help a lot. But yeah, would be nice to have a more permanent fix.
  • HelsaHelsa
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    edited August 29, 2022
    Niought wrote: »
    I feel like it'd be tedious having to type up someones id number to note or mail them, but that being said...id's would help a lot with the issue, cause everyone's still different from each other, names aside. Would make sense if it only popped up in the character box after right clicking a player though, since it would be too stuffy to have with the names when pressing alt.

    On a side note though, I feel like the name fixing thing should be free instead. That would also really help a lot. But yeah, would be nice to have a more permanent fix.

    You know you're right, right-clicking to bring up a context menu DOES sound like a better idea! As for numbers being tedious, it's not likely to be any more tedious than dialing a real-life phone number for the first time. Maybe we can get a prompt of "Would you like to add this number to your Fone Book?" or something. As for the first time, you could start by typing in the character name with a drop-down list simplifying as you type more giving you the opportunity to use auto-complete and then doing the same with the Fone Number as you type it in.

    There is already a feature, in-game, to copy name, upon right-clicking you could maybe have the same for Fone Number and be able to add it to your Fone Book without actually initiating communications.

    This would allow more than just name fixing. With unlimited duplicates people will be able to get the name they always really wanted. This makes for a happier player-base. Also, since duplicates are not a problem it makes the name change service easier for Nexon; they only have to filter for offensive names. This would take less work so they could offer the service for cheaper which would increase demand; maybe allowing Nexon to price it at the optimal price point.
  • HelsaHelsa
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    Changed thread title.
  • HelsaHelsa
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    Are there no more thoughts on this?
  • AlexisEUAlexisEU
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    It's a massive unnecessary expensive hassle to implement this in such an old game.
    And anybody that cares about this is egotistical and/or superficial

    But i will admit it is unfair Alexinians didn't get full "first come first serve" name eligibility with the merge.
    The other servers had already been through the awful process of renaming and was spared for the second merge.
    Life isn't always fair, sometimes a choice has to be made, and its not necessarily ideal for everyone.

    I'm sure Sun1248/Goku can find joy in Erinn, even if their friends make fun of their silly name.
    WanderIustShakaya
  • BerryswirlBerryswirl
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    I feel like it's fine. It sucks Alexina didn't get first come first serve as already mentioned, but I personally don't want to see a bunch of people running around with the same name, and don't care for dealing with a UID system on Mabi.

    Also @Niought they did make the name change free for people who had their named changed by Nexon. If you had the +server tag added onto your name by Nexon during the merge, you get a free name change.
    WanderIustShakaya
  • LoomyOfPiLoomyOfPi
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    I think the reason they don't want duplicate names is for preventative damage control. If one player impersonated another (or just had the same name) and caused trouble, it would be harder for Nexon to handle and a greater chance that they would accidentally punish the wrong player. In like manner, they've instituted rules that letters cannot follow numbers. This prevents someone creating a giant named He1sa (which would look like Helsa in game).

    Even if it weren't something to rise to TOS consideration, mistaken identity alone is a reason to avoid duplicates.
    True, you can't eliminate mistaken identity, but you can minimize the chances. If nothing else, this is a situation Nexon won't have to sort out if one player shares the same name as another creates some chaos.

    I can see a similar problem with pets, seeing as how we can log in as a pet. They can't share the same name. The fact that they can't share the same name as humanoid characters or pets of different species seems a bit ridiculous, though. But as mentioned in a post above, their identity as a game object depends on the player-created name, not some generated ID.

    I like the idea of last names. That might allow names to be reused. But I have the sneaky suspicion that would be more complicated than it sounds. It not like adding a title. This would be more like changing the character name (as is done at maintenance, for those who ask for it), which would involve changing the game object ID of the character. This could easily be done for new characters, but for those already created, it's probably something the developers and maintenance crew really does not want to handle.

    BerryswirlShakaya
  • HelsaHelsa
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    AlexisEU wrote: »
    It's a massive unnecessary expensive hassle to implement this in such an old game.
    And anybody that cares about this is egotistical and/or superficial

    But i will admit it is unfair Alexinians didn't get full "first come first serve" name eligibility with the merge.
    The other servers had already been through the awful process of renaming and was spared for the second merge.
    Life isn't always fair, sometimes a choice has to be made, and its not necessarily ideal for everyone.

    I'm sure Sun1248/Goku can find joy in Erinn, even if their friends make fun of their silly name.

    It's up to Nexon to decide about it's priority. The expense and hassle to implement is their business, so we: the player community don't really have to worry about that. Worrying about names may be egotistical and superficial, but superficial/egotistical people are people too. If Sun1248/Goku, despite their personality and personal character, want to change their name anyway and Nexon can make a buck off of it, then that's a win/win. The world may not be fair but Mabinogi can always be improved.

    Berryswirl wrote: »
    I feel like it's fine. It sucks Alexina didn't get first come first serve as already mentioned, but I personally don't want to see a bunch of people running around with the same name, and don't care for dealing with a UID system on Mabi.

    Also @Niought they did make the name change free for people who had their named changed by Nexon. If you had the +server tag added onto your name by Nexon during the merge, you get a free name change.

    For the folks that happened to be first to get a desirable name and like being the only one, I can see the appeal of how special it makes them feel, but that's one person versus several who wished they had the same name as well. Overall, more people are happier. Dealing with UID doesn't have to be a hassle as long the user interface is well enough designed.

    LoomyOfPi wrote: »
    I think the reason they don't want duplicate names is for preventative damage control. If one player impersonated another (or just had the same name) and caused trouble, it would be harder for Nexon to handle and a greater chance that they would accidentally punish the wrong player. In like manner, they've instituted rules that letters cannot follow numbers. This prevents someone creating a giant named He1sa (which would look like Helsa in game).

    Even if it weren't something to rise to TOS consideration, mistaken identity alone is a reason to avoid duplicates.
    True, you can't eliminate mistaken identity, but you can minimize the chances. If nothing else, this is a situation Nexon won't have to sort out if one player shares the same name as another creates some chaos.

    I can see a similar problem with pets, seeing as how we can log in as a pet. They can't share the same name. The fact that they can't share the same name as humanoid characters or pets of different species seems a bit ridiculous, though. But as mentioned in a post above, their identity as a game object depends on the player-created name, not some generated ID.

    I have thought about that. It's kinda like telling a cop that you were cut-off by a silver Honda Civic; go look for a silver Honda Civic. Of course, the cop replies, "Did you get the license plate?" That's the idea about the ID being visible either by pressing alt or right-clicking or both, and why it would show up in the chat log and other places. So choosing your name is like choosing the model and colour of your car but the ID number, given by the DMV or in this case the game, is like the license plate. Yes, initially, while we all get used to this, someone could pretend to be me, but the difference in ID number will make it clear that it's an imposter. We will get used to the idea of providing name and ID when making complaints to Nexon about players just like we do, in the real world, with make and colour of cars and license plate.

    LoomyOfPi wrote: »
    I like the idea of last names. That might allow names to be reused. But I have the sneaky suspicion that would be more complicated than it sounds. It not like adding a title. This would be more like changing the character name (as is done at maintenance, for those who ask for it), which would involve changing the game object ID of the character. This could easily be done for new characters, but for those already created, it's probably something the developers and maintenance crew really does not want to handle.

    Adding a last name field would add more flexibility. Let's say though that Nexon chooses your last name, for you instead, and keeps it unique as required, allowing complete flexibility for the first name field. Furthermore, let's say they choose some kind of dystopian name that doesn't use letters but numbers. They can either add a new field, which is more complicated than not adding a field, or use one that already exists, in this case record number. Just pretend record number IS last name.

    * * * * * * * *

    Great points everyone. They are all legitimate concerns that should be ironed out. Thanks for contributing. Any more?
  • BerryswirlBerryswirl
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    Might be unpopular opinion but this is just a personal preference, I hate games that use the first and last name mechanic and force you into choosing a last name.

    @Helsa "For the folks that happened to be first to get a desirable name and like being the only one, I can see the appeal of how special it makes them feel, but that's one person versus several who wished they had the same name as well."

    (Excluding Alexina) I'm just going to use my own name as an example, but I made up this name years ago, and made sure that I'd be available to claim the name after the server merge because I've had others try to copy it to an extent, with someone from Mabi outright stealing my name on another game and pretending to be me. (This wasn't the first instance of this particular name being stolen from someone on Mabi either, though the other person actually didn't pretend they were me). As someone else pointed out already - identity theft is a real concern and really annoying for the person it's happening to.

    Allowing everyone who wants to be named the same as someone else also negates the effort the person who got the name put into making sure they would be available to claim it. Some people put real life events and work aside to make sure they got their names.

    A similar topic I could think of would be the Seal Stones. People got Seal Stones based on if they prepared to meet the requirements before the server merge maint, logged out at the correct spot beforehand, and happened to be the first person who logged in afterwards. But the people who got the titles, while still luck based, made preparations beforehand.

    So should someone else, who just logged off where ever and ran to a Seal Stone, be entitled to the Seal Breaker title as well? Why not give every single person on the server a Seal Breaker title?

    You'll find some people are all for this idea, while others (even people who missed out on the Seal Breaker titles) would deem this unfair.

    I think it's relatively the same for the name situation, some people would be all for this idea, people naming themselves Goku could bond over the fact they like DBZ, but others with more unique names that might hold significance to them or names they personally came up with would be upset if someone else just happened to see their name, liked it, and started using it themselves.
    Shakaya
  • NioughtNiought
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    edited September 10, 2022
    Berryswirl wrote: »
    Might be unpopular opinion but this is just a personal preference, I hate games that use the first and last name mechanic and force you into choosing a last name.

    @Helsa "For the folks that happened to be first to get a desirable name and like being the only one, I can see the appeal of how special it makes them feel, but that's one person versus several who wished they had the same name as well."

    (Excluding Alexina) I'm just going to use my own name as an example, but I made up this name years ago, and made sure that I'd be available to claim the name after the server merge because I've had others try to copy it to an extent, with someone from Mabi outright stealing my name on another game and pretending to be me. (This wasn't the first instance of this particular name being stolen from someone on Mabi either, though the other person actually didn't pretend they were me). As someone else pointed out already - identity theft is a real concern and really annoying for the person it's happening to.

    Allowing everyone who wants to be named the same as someone else also negates the effort the person who got the name put into making sure they would be available to claim it. Some people put real life events and work aside to make sure they got their names.

    A similar topic I could think of would be the Seal Stones. People got Seal Stones based on if they prepared to meet the requirements before the server merge maint, logged out at the correct spot beforehand, and happened to be the first person who logged in afterwards. But the people who got the titles, while still luck based, made preparations beforehand.

    So should someone else, who just logged off where ever and ran to a Seal Stone, be entitled to the Seal Breaker title as well? Why not give every single person on the server a Seal Breaker title?

    You'll find some people are all for this idea, while others (even people who missed out on the Seal Breaker titles) would deem this unfair.

    I think it's relatively the same for the name situation, some people would be all for this idea, people naming themselves Goku could bond over the fact they like DBZ, but others with more unique names that might hold significance to them or names they personally came up with would be upset if someone else just happened to see their name, liked it, and started using it themselves.

    Actually, these are all good points. While considering the idea was interesting since other games do have id's, for Mabi, it really would add more trouble and complications, while right now, I appreciate the simplicity of it all. Also, knowing that the name changes were free for those people who needed it (my bad, I guess I just thought I heard differently, and I suppose the fact that people still ran around with + at the end of their names made me think it wasn't free, or something) makes me feel better about it. It is nice that there's only one of everyone, and not a bunch of copied names running around, too.
    BerryswirlShakaya
  • HelsaHelsa
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    Berryswirl wrote: »
    Might be unpopular opinion but this is just a personal preference, I hate games that use the first and last name mechanic and force you into choosing a last name.

    Having a last name is a solution. It's better than what we now have but it doesn't really appeal to me either, not just because it requires adding a whole new field to the character record. Let's say that, instead, Nexon provides the last name. That could form a basis for uniting players together as having the same last name, for whatever that might be worth. Furthermore, let's say that if one doesn't like their last name that Nexon allows one to choose, say, from a list; that's a little bit better. But what happens if the last name you want is already owned by someone with your first name? Well, then you CAN'T have the last name you want! This is why I've referred to using last name as "kicking the can down the road". Allowing folks to make their own last name just kicks that can farther down the road. It's better but doesn't make the problem completely disappear.

    Berryswirl wrote: »
    I'm just going to use my own name as an example, but I made up this name years ago, and made sure that I'd be available to claim the name after the server merge because I've had others try to copy it to an extent. As someone else pointed out already - identity theft is a real concern and really annoying for the person it's happening to.

    Identity theft is passing ones self off as someone else to exploit them. If someone makes a character now with a very similar name, similar enough that they may fool some people, the victim points out the difference in the name and that's the end of the matter; this can happen now. With an ID number one just points out the difference in the ID number. I have suggested that ID number should be made public and non-concealable. In the real world, identity theft involves using credit card numbers, social security numbers, and so on. This kind of thing can't happen in Mabinogi now, or with the multi-name suggestions given. So, it would not be identity theft but, at worse, impersonation. As the general population gets familiar with the system, impersonation would become as difficult to pass off as it is now.

    Berryswirl wrote: »
    Allowing everyone who wants to be named the same as someone else also negates the effort the person who got the name put into making sure they would be available to claim it. Some people put real life events and work aside to make sure they got their names.

    After the effort and anxiety of getting a particular name, it is understandable that one might have an extra attraction to it. The thing is such players were forced into that situation by a game that didn't allow multiple names. Had Mabinogi been made to use ID from the get-go one would never have had to jump through all those hoops and bare the anxiety preceding getting their names. And don't forget the people that did all that but DIDN'T get the name they wanted. There's also the folks that didn't jump through any hoops and didn't get the name the wanted. Using ID number would give all of them satisfaction and happiness.

    Berryswirl wrote: »
    people naming themselves Goku could bond over the fact they like DBZ, but others with more unique names that might hold significance to them or names they personally came up with would be upset if someone else just happened to see their name, liked it, and started using it themselves.

    People wanting to enjoy a unique name versus people wanting the name they really want is irreconcilable. So, then you have to look for what creates the most overall happiness. Take the merge that made Erinn, for example. Giving everyone a server tag gives Alexina a shot at the name they want but is unfair to Nao because they have to face the situation a second time. Giving Nao a pass is unfair to Alexina as they had no chance at their names. Either way upsets someone. It was irreconcilable, but the latter meant more happiness overall. Since it was automatically a rock and a hard-place situation, you go with the less repugnant choice.

    Niought wrote: »
    Berryswirl wrote: »
    Might be unpopular opinion but this is just a personal preference, I hate games that use the first and last name mechanic and force you into choosing a last name.

    @Helsa "For the folks that happened to be first to get a desirable name and like being the only one, I can see the appeal of how special it makes them feel, but that's one person versus several who wished they had the same name as well."

    (Excluding Alexina) I'm just going to use my own name as an example, but I made up this name years ago, and made sure that I'd be available to claim the name after the server merge because I've had others try to copy it to an extent, with someone from Mabi outright stealing my name on another game and pretending to be me. (This wasn't the first instance of this particular name being stolen from someone on Mabi either, though the other person actually didn't pretend they were me). As someone else pointed out already - identity theft is a real concern and really annoying for the person it's happening to.

    Allowing everyone who wants to be named the same as someone else also negates the effort the person who got the name put into making sure they would be available to claim it. Some people put real life events and work aside to make sure they got their names.

    A similar topic I could think of would be the Seal Stones. People got Seal Stones based on if they prepared to meet the requirements before the server merge maint, logged out at the correct spot beforehand, and happened to be the first person who logged in afterwards. But the people who got the titles, while still luck based, made preparations beforehand.

    So should someone else, who just logged off where ever and ran to a Seal Stone, be entitled to the Seal Breaker title as well? Why not give every single person on the server a Seal Breaker title?

    You'll find some people are all for this idea, while others (even people who missed out on the Seal Breaker titles) would deem this unfair.

    I think it's relatively the same for the name situation, some people would be all for this idea, people naming themselves Goku could bond over the fact they like DBZ, but others with more unique names that might hold significance to them or names they personally came up with would be upset if someone else just happened to see their name, liked it, and started using it themselves.

    Actually, these are all good points. While considering the idea was interesting since other games do have id's, for Mabi, it really would add more trouble and complications, while right now, I appreciate the simplicity of it all. Also, knowing that the name changes were free for those people who needed it (my bad, I guess I just thought I heard differently, and I suppose the fact that people still ran around with + at the end of their names made me think it wasn't free, or something) makes me feel better about it. It is nice that there's only one of everyone, and not a bunch of copied names running around, too.

    The present situation is what we are used to. The suggestion to use an ID number makes the game more like the real world which we are also already used to. The transition to the new paradigm may take some time to get used to but it will happen. As for the free name changes that was the least Nexon could do. When Nao was created you could've had three people with the same name and their old server tag. There can be only one, so only one was ultimately happy. The rest had to either live with their old server tag or change their name to something else that they really didn't want. The merge that made Erinn would either be unfair to Naowegians or to Alexinans. The population of Alexina being smaller the result was that they were left dissatisfied with no chance for relief. One can say that it is nice for names to be unique but one can also say that it is nice to be able to get the name one wants. It's a zero-sum situation. Which creates more happiness overall? I should think it would be folks getting the names they want.

    * * * * * * * *

    More great points being made guys. Thanks for contributing and doing so in polite fashion. Any more?