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Duplicating Player Names + Cam Change
For Harder OOC Identification without total

Browsing BGBB for the last several days, I stumbled upon a thread by Slither. In a nutshell, he explained that we shouldn't be using display names to identify characters, rather, we need to look at them to recognize them or not. This got me thinking.

Im not for sure, but I think I recall that you can't name a new character with a name that is already in use, PC or NPC?

Can we change this? Allow more than one PC to share a name with another PC/NPC? Cap the number at three or something to prevent abuse. I.E. A bunch of players all naming themselves StanLee to game the system.

With that, use a random name generator populated with all existing NPC/PC names that have survived than six+ months in the last year. Maybe offer a small UE bonus at creation, a second language at x proficiency, or a fourth perk (and the negative perk that comes with it). Incentivize players to do it. No rerolls on the generator, and track the IP so a player can't just keep restarting creation to get a name they want.

Cams: At present, we can't see character descs through cams. Create a scan screen/monitor/etc. command with a 30-120 second cooldown. It provides a small chance to see descs of characters in the room. Maybe ten or fifteen percent.

Finally, remove titles (I.E. last names) from randomly generated NPCs. We know they often generate with PC names, but relatively few players include last name in their title. In fact, remove titles altogether because it only serves as another means of OOC Identification.

There are already IC skills checks, high ones, that I believe allow you to do what you are saying, so I think it would undermine and devalue that play dramatically if you can just do it out the gate. We do not have a volume of enough players to realistically have people with name conflicts in a meanful way unless someone is creating a duplicate name with intent (rule breaking).

But, if we are not using those names as IC player identifiers they should not appear on cams at all perhaps? Instead everyone spotted by a cam is identified by meaningful traits, with the option on the cam to 'look' closer.

Cams are such a weird one, because seeing a name through a cam that you recogonise as a character you know IC realistically IC you should know that character. BUT we should not be using that name to actually identify characters at all.

Perhaps if there is not mechanical changes, can there at least be clarification to the correct use of cam data?

In fact, build a random number generator for the scan timer with variables between 30-120 so players can't time it to spam.
Ah, gotcha. Was writing that as you responded, fopse
There's already situations where PC's have the same/similar names to NPCs, and this leads to the situation of having to pose ".wave at "second [blank]'", which is the most painful thing in the world. Player names act as verbs, and duplicate verbs with people is just... bad, from a technical standpoint.
OH Sabess You make a good point actually on that just remembered.

If you have two matching characters NPC's can break pretty hard trying to address one of them as they do not do multiples.

Example - two shrouded dudes one asks for a drink from the bar. Bar tender NPC has a freaking Bishop style melt down and explodes.

I should clarify as well: I don't dislike the idea conceptually! But I think having duplicate player names will break the MOO in a lot of unintended ways.
These are all fair points. What about the random NPC idea regarding last names?

Also, here's the thread this idea was inspired from.

https://www.sindome.org/bgbb/game-discussion/game-problems/display-name-is-not-identity-478/

Also, if any staff want to weigh in on the idea and concerns mentioned, I'd appreciate it. I know Slither (at the very least) has strong opinions about this issue, and while I personally don't think it's off theme to use display name as identity, I absolutely want to seek answers and compromise between GM demands and player satisfaction/utility.
A security system rework has been announced a ways back. Obfuscating character ID's might be part of that. I assume it's helpful to hear ideas on ways the system can be improved, regardless.
That original post was made because there was a plot that had an NPC with the same display name as a prominent PC, and it was pretty confusing for all involved. Personally I think the takeaway should have been not to have NPCs that could be easily confused for PCs at the same location, because all the systems in the game have been built around a PCs display name being a shorthand for their identity/appearance. Another game with a different targetting/ID system might've been able to have systems with multiple identical IDs but my own opinion is the die has long been cast that Sindome is not one of them.
I think that identity theft in a cyberpunk-themed game should be something you can accomplish in the digital realm far easier than in the physical one.
On second thought, I will clarify that I think theft of your /digital identity/ should be more meaningful than theft of your physical likeness. Whether one or the other is more /easy/ probably will be driven by the privileges and protections that the have (or have-not) enjoys.
I'd prefer no means of being able to duplicate names, whether in chargen or through disguise. There's already been instances of copy-pasting descriptions of other characters. And I can only imagine how this would end up cheesed in combat.
I just remembered that your character has an IC means of setting what their face looks like (in ASCII art) with the @face command. Perhaps this could be leveraged in some way to be a happy medium between copy-pasta duplicate character descriptions and allowing the characters that are invested in identity theft some sort of more narrowly scoped IC benefit.

We do have retinal scanners in game right now (high security) but maybe we could get some facial recognition scanners instead.

Not sure how we would ICly have somebody 'get' your @face, though. Maybe store it in a repository of individual door owners that is hackable from the grid, or attach it to the results of certain security devices after they scan you.

Part of our migration to Toast Stunt includes support for lightweight objects called waifs. A waif can encompass any number of attributes and verbs, like objects in the game, but without the fancy #1234 numbers.

Our plan is to turn security systems into a relay network sending not text messages, but complex waifs that contain all the facts about the moment. This will allow us to move the determination of /who/ from the generation end of the network to the viewing end of the network. Once we do that, we'll be able to optionally transform the person from Bob to 'a tall lanky gentleman' depending on the viewers state.

This same concept will eventually replace all messaging so we can get to that happy place where you don't know someones name until they introduce themselves, regardless of what they do.