Naming, Roses and Earthsea

It doesn’t look like I’ll ever get around to writing up all of the notes I took on Star Wars: The Old Republic, even though it’s way late for a review anyway. I’ve cancelled my subscription and even though it doesn’t expire until August, I doubt I’ll bother logging in because my character died.

So he’s not technically dead, as in deleted or lost, but I lost both my character’s name and legacy name in the recent server merges (because let’s be honest, that’s what they are). Now, I’m sure at least half if not more of you are thinking so what, and that’s probably because you agree with Shakespeare. I don’t, at least not for proper names. I’ve always thought Ursula Le Guin and Pat Rothfuss had it right. Names matter. I realize a large number of people couldn’t care less, log into just about any MMO and spend half an hour in a major social area if you don’t believe me. But I get highly invested in a characters name in both stories and games.

Honestly, I really shouldn’t have bothered with the character transfer from Sanctum to Ebon Hawk. I should have stayed on the dwindling server and finished my class quests (which I’d left sitting for a month or two) and not worried about it. I assumed though that I would eventually want to join up with friends a be a bit more social eventually, so I might as well get it over with. Had I known that BioWare was condensing six PvE-RP servers into one I would’ve realized the chances of keeping the name Kae or legacy Bluestar were infinitesimal. Hindsight, blah blah.

The end result though is that after doing the super quick transfer, I logged in and had to change my character’s name. After seventeen attempts I found a variation on Kae that wasn’t taken, although by that point I didn’t really care. When I tried to set my legacy name back and got the message that it was taken, I decided I was done. Melodramatic? Probably, but it was a completely honest reaction and has stuck with me days later.

It’s ironic that the very process which will hopefully revitalize the game, has completely killed my interest in it. Even more so since BioWare seemed to have some really interesting stuff planned for the next release.

So rather than returning to my Jedi Guardian, Kaevn Blank, I’ve headed back to Star Trek Online for my science fiction fix. Cryptic get’s a lot of heat, sometimes deserved and sometimes not, over their business practices, but I really like the way they’ve done their server architecture. Like with CCP’s EVE, there’s only one server/world/shard for STO. Even better names only have to be unique for my account handle and account handles can hidden in chat (I don’t think they ever display on-screen).

6 Comments

  1. At this point, even if I’d lost my names I’d probably still keep because of the core group I play with. My very good friend and guild leader @Paganrites as well as a few members from the RMC/IMC are still going strong, so that’s what matters to me now, but I think in about a month we’ll all be moving to The Secret World anyway! And then after that, GW2.

    • BrianNo Gravatar says:

      Had I already been in with the RMC crew, I might’ve stuck with it. I also probably wouldn’t have slacked off when I hit 50. One of these days I’ll get my social safety net figured out. X)

  2. Ori KleinNo Gravatar says:

    STO is a sinking ship.
    One of your most favorites, Geoff ‘Heretic’ Tuffli just announced his departure from Cryptic/STO.
    And Cryptic just had a forum retardation with forced account linking courtesy of their masters at PWE with no recourse seemingly possible.
    All individuality and past history of users been wiped. Welcome to Mainland China citizen, enjoy your lack of freedoms and voice.
    Expect the game to suffer next, it’s going to be much worse very soon. PWE have arrived.

    • BrianNo Gravatar says:

      Damaged? Yes. Sinking? Not quite yet. Maybe PWE will run the game into a big enough iceberg eventually, but STO has survived a lot of hardships in the last two years. It’s much too soon to write off the game.

      I am pretty down that Heretic is leaving. He’s by far one of the most communicative developers on the team, but I can’t totally understand wanting to do something else after being at Cryptic for seven years. I’ve never lasted longer than five years at any programming job myself, and given the hours that game developers put in I think it’s impressive he didn’t feel the need for a change sooner.

      I’m not happy with the website and forum changes either, but I think it’s important to remember that a majority of the players don’t frequent the forums at all and aren’t affected by the recent forum reset. The podcast listening audience is slightly larger, so if this kills some of the community podcasts then maybe that’ll be more of an issue, but I think that the lock boxes are far more irritating to the player-base as a whole that the forum changes.

  3. AnjinNo Gravatar says:

    Funny enough, this is the reason that I rolled a new character in Rift instead of moving the old character off of her dead server. I couldn’t find a server that would let me keep my name. :(

    • BrianNo Gravatar says:

      I was thinking of that myself, since I was thinking of shifting characters to Deepwood where some of the other people I know have gone. I probably won’t do that now unless Faeblight turns out to be a ghost town. I haven’t spent much time in Rift yet though so I have no idea. I’m not sure I’m as invested in my Rift characters though. The story elements there just aren’t as strong, plus I think being able to swap roles changes the feel of a character so much that it makes it tougher for me to build an identity for them.