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Character Transfer Heartbreak

Jackii's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 09:49 AM | #1
So there I was grinding away, waiting almost 2 hours for a Warzone to pop on a Monday night. With Shii Cho being added to the server transfer list earlier that day our already struggling population to a pretty massive hit.

I began doing a ton of reading and came across several posts that (though unsubstantiated) mention server “merging” which indicates to me that soon the origin servers will more than likely be brought down. Being an IT professional myself, I cannot see BW justifying the cost of maintaining an entire server for less than 50 active players who may or may not be n at the same time.

Feeling like I had no choice and that I was forced to either transfer or stop playing completely, I logged on to the destination server for the first time and started looking at my naming options. You see I am one of those people that believe everything is in a name, and when you carry a name and a naming convention since closed beta (and in my case for more than 10 years’ worth of gaming) you get rather attached and known for that name. I mean I pre-ordered and paid for next day delivery of my CE not to play as quickly as possible, but just to be able to keep my in-game names. Now I am staring at the screen and learning that each and every one of my character names is not available, nor is any variation.

After the total disappointment and anger set in, and almost 3 hours of naming attempts, I finally came up with a naming convention that actually made it through all 8 of the character slots as available. So now it was time to delete a couple of the name-placeholders and begin the transfer.

I bring over my main first just to set up the Legacy name and ensure that all of my perks / conveniences transfer over as well. When I first log in everything seems fine until I attempt to name my Legacy… GO FIGURE, it is also taken!!!! So now I am really just flat out disappointed. Forced to transfer or sit alone on a dead server, not allowed to keep any of the character names I have been using since closed beta, and now my Legacy name itself is gone too.

The only thing that I didn’t lose was the one thing I thought I would, convenience unlocks! Yay, I got to keep my mailbox on my ship and the astromech droid, the battle dummies and my rocket boosters, you know the irreplaceable things.

Now after finally just letting go, I trying to decide if I want to allow my subscription to renew next month or not, I moved onto the task of completing the transfer of all 8 of my characters… which by the way had to be done 1 at a time. The first 7 went without a hitch, click the name, click next, next, and done a few seconds later there it was on the new server just needing it’s new name. The 8th character on the other hand, not so easy.

I spent more than an hour attempting to get the server selection to recognize that there were only 7 characters and not 8 as it indicated. Finally in another “How disappointed are you?” thread I discovered the work around from a player and not a Dev. If you too run into this, you must create a character in the 8th slot, then run it and let the title crawl pass all the way through on it’s own, complete the initial conversation in the starting area and accept the first class quest. Once you have made it this far, log out and delete the character from the selection screen, exit the game, refresh the swtor website, log back into your account and attempt the transfer again.

Anyhow, this was my experience with the transfer system, I hope yours is better if you are on a dying server and you feel like you have to transfer, be alone, or stop playing.

Lazzer's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:02 AM | #2
To be fair every name that you have had since BETA is probably owned by someone on your new server also since BETA, they have probably also had that name/surname through years of gaming .

If it didn't happen to you it would have happened to someone else, if the servers were more populated from the start you may never have been able to get those names in the 1st place.

It sucks but it is an aspect of any server transfer and there is nothing anyone can do about it.

TheCastle's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:07 AM | #3
I feel for you, but, seriously, what was the alternative?

For me the transfer (or merge, 'cause I believe, like you, that when some servers fall below a minimum threshold, the remaining players will be forcibly moved) brought a world of good.

Now I can actually play a multiplayer game. Just as an example, there are now usually 40-50 people in Black Hole, which means that you find a group for the H4 quite easily. Before, my original server had 3-5 people, and you can see how difficult would be to find 3 like minded guys.

I understand that this caused damage to the people who had to move, because some lose the names, some other end up guildless, and so on, but you can't make a omelette without breaking the eggs, and in this case I think the gains far outweight the losses.

Try, and I am sure you will find names for your Legacy and characters that you will come to love.

Good luck!

Phatzorro's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:10 AM | #4
Afraid not mate, EXACTLY the same here. Logged in and only 1 other player on the old server, So off to the only server I am allowed to transfer too. So far, so hoopy. Oh dear your name is now PDBWEJIGFHZISWVUH. Great, so my lvl 50 HAS to have a new name. Legacy? No that is taken too. Brilliant so my main characters, have had to change name AND legacy. After the MASSIVE grind that is getting a decnetley geared toon I am now left with a toon that I now personally feel I have no connection too. Also a lot of my old friends have had to do this as well so, I can no longer find them without a massively tedious trawl through variants on names.Unbelievable.
If you strike me down I will become more powerful than you could possibly imagine. So there

Serahn's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:11 AM | #5
A well articulated post. I am in a similar boat with my names, naming many from the world of Harry Potter. Everyone has their own reasons for their names, and I chose Potter. I ended up getting lucky, I only lost one name, the traditional spelling of Narcissa, which I worked around with an ALT 141 for the i. This actually worked out to my advantage as that one character is also the guild leader, so the funky character has cut down on my whispers by about 80 percent. The people I do want whispering me have learned how to type my name or have added me to their friends list.

I got lucky though. I happened to be online when my server got the word on the transfer. We were the first server on a list of 6 being sent to one server and that destination server did not have any transfers to it at that point. When I got onto the new server, there were 51 people on fleet. Two hours later, 300, and by the end of the day 700.

I just don't feel like there is any way around this system without being unfair to the community as a whole. Yes, people who did plenty of extra work to ensure they aquired their names at launch get hosed, and thats a shame. However, I feel that establishing some sort of seniority or accomplishment based system to give a priority to players is twice as unfair.

It's just a real shame for people who lost their names. I do feel for you guys.

Hopefully, the new state of the game will overrule your displeasure from losing your names and you will continue to play.

Good Luck.
<Serahn of Kaos>
Guild Leader of the Kaos Empire
"Our only allegiance is to each other!"

theoffspringlp's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:12 AM | #6
I play republic on one server, empire on another. Last week my republic server was selected for transfers. Even though I wasn't keen on the process they chose for transfers, I went ahead and transferred and was lucky enough to keep all my names. Then yesterday my empire server, which was reasonably healthy, got selected to be moved. This time, almost all my names were taken, and like you, I was very disheartened as I've been using some of those names as early as UO (one was actually a name I used for my save file in the first Zelda game). I wouldn't be nearly as unhappy with Bioware if they had made any effort at all in trying to help impact character names as little as possible. There were better ways they could have done transfers that would have impacted fewer players. I still have 3 months left on my subscription, and I'm right there with you in debate about whether or not to renew. It's less about the actual loss of names and more about the poor customer service in trying to fix a problem that they created.

lionfire's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:12 AM | #7
I have a lvl 50 sentinal and a lvl 47 Bounty Hunter on Krayiss and all my friends and other high level characters are on jedi covenant. Imagine my pain after having waited since january for server transfers only to have jedi covenant not be the server krayiss can transfer to. Server transfer on select servers.... useless.

JWagner's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:21 AM | #8
Depending how you look at the game, NAME is everything.
EX: I'm on an RP server. On RP servers, your name is who you are. If you change your name, you essentially change your person.
It's all just a matter of how you view it. I'm sorry if you can't understand it from other perspectives.

[NOTE: That's not my reason for NOT transferring. My names are -all- available on -all- destination servers. I just don't want to transfer yet.]
Begeren Colony (RP)
Ree'kì {65} | Dràyson {51} | Kareenà {22}
Si'her'ka {50} | Dinaya {60} | Sirlock {52}
Dalìna / Dalinà { 1 / 50 }

split_light's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:23 AM | #9
I feel your pain, I really do. I've already become truly attached to my name, and being one of the last servers assigned to transfer to Harbinger finding even a slightly related spelling was pretty much impossible.

jgoldsack's Avatar

06.19.2012 , 10:26 AM | #10
The only name I lost int eh transfer that I actually was sad about was my name Brooks. So I was no longer able to be Darth Brooks.

Other than that, none of the names I lost mattered too much. Nothing a simple apostrophe, or ascii character couldn't fix.
On the Internet, you can be anything you want. It is strange so many people choose to be stupid.