A Username is the name of a player's character within the world of RuneScape. It uniquely identifies the player's account within Jagex' systems. Players must choose their own username as part of the process of creating an account, and they currently cannot change it at any time afterwards. Previously, any player who was not happy with his or her account's username could only abandon the account and start all over again with a new one. However, on 1 October 2009, Jagex created a way for members to change their viewable name. This is called a character name.
A username was used to enter a clan, find a player on the hiscores, and appeared as the username. But, players still had to log in using their usernames. The clan chat could still be entered by entering the username.
The username is the foremost method of recognition between players. Often players may not know what another player's character looks like, especially given that a character's appearance can change - this may be simply via changing its clothes or making more drastic changes via the Makeover Mage.
Usernames are also used to identify players on Friends Lists and Ignore Lists. Players can add others to either of these by right-clicking an entry they have made in the message box, and selecting "Add to Friends" or "Add to Ignore".
Other functions require players to type in someone else's username, and they must do this with absolute accuracy for the function to work. These include when entering another player's house.
Choosing a username
Limitations of usernames
- Usernames must be between 1 and 12 characters long.
- Usernames may only contain alphanumeric characters, the space, and hyphens (-). Any other characters are replaced with a space.
- Usernames cannot start with or end with a space, but can have any number of spaces between.
- Given the above parameters, there are 2,084,454,322,680,818,585,575,401,523,200 possible usernames.
- Usernames cannot contain one of several phrases including "Java", "Mod", "Jagex", etc.
- Usernames cannot contain anything offensive such as inappropriate words or curse words.
- A finite amount of usernames can be created per IP before the action is throttled.
In addition to the technical limitations of choosing a username, Jagex's terms and conditions place some restrictions on what players are permitted to call themselves. These state that players "must not choose a username that infringes the rights of any third party, impersonates Jagex staff or other users, which is deliberately confusing or which is offensive, racist, obscene, hurtful, unlawful or otherwise inappropriate or which breaches the username requirements specified on our site or our Rules of Conduct".
Other guidelines from Jagex during the username selection process include:
- "Usernames can be a maximum of 12 characters long and may contain letters, numbers and underscores.The criteria used to be that if your name was red_rooster it would appear as Red Rooster in game, but with name changing update on 1 October 2009 capitalisation on names is no longer counted and your name will appear as it was typed when creating/name changing an account.
- "It should not contain your real name, birth date, or other personally identifiable information, to better protect your identity." Some users choose to spell their real name backwards to form a username; this is certainly not recommended, since it is easy to guess.
- "It should not be offensive or break our Terms+Conditions". Usernames are not censored by the chat filter, so it is possible for players to choose a username that is inappropriate. However, accounts can be banned for having an overtly offensive username. Players are not warned if they try to create an account with a username that activates the chat filter, and consequently genuine players may find that they cannot say their own (inoffensive) username in-game without at least part of it being censored. This does not mean that they are in danger of being banned, but simply that the chat filter has detected something as being potentially offensive when it is not. Members and eligible free players can post on the "Feedback About The Censor" sticky in the RuneScape Forums if they wish to bring their specific plight to Jagex's attention.
Jagex's Terms and Conditions have long since stated that the company can "change any username for any reason", though in practice this is most likely only done for usernames that Jagex considers offensive or inappropriate. Prior to the addition of username changes, a facility to do this had been in demand from many players for some time, and there had been many requests on the RuneScape Forums. This had reportedly been acknowledged by Jagex moderators.
Jagex confirmed via their Twitter feed on 19 May 2009 that the company is developing a means for players to change their own names, and this had been scheduled for release in summer 2009. This was confirmed on the RuneScape Forums on 25 May. However, a Twitter update on 1 July 2009 implied that there will be a significant delay by saying: "we hope to have it out this year", adding that there are "too many factors to say when it will be out". On 6 August 2009, Jagex CEO Mark Gerhard expanded on the upcoming feature, saying it would be a "display name system" that will "allow you to change your in-game display name to be different from your login name", and that it would be released "shortly".
Technical problems that Jagex needs to overcome include the Friends and Ignore Lists, which presumably would need to update automatically, and allow players to see the previous usernames of people on their lists (so that they know who they are talking to). Players may also encounter problems if they change their username, and then try to change it back; someone else may have taken their old name in the meantime, and it might never become available again. It is possible that Jagex may also make the usernames of banned accounts available for others to use.
Previously, Mod Tron had been quoted (by another player) as saying in March 2008: "it remains the case that we are lacking a system which can change account names. I understand that this is something which would make a bunch of people happy, and this is why here at Jagex we are investigating all the possibilities. It is an absolute fact that we are always looking to improve our services for the better. So watch this space!!" Similarly, Mod Craddock had reportedly said: "We also might eventually be introducing a system which allows players to change the name of their account. Watch this space." However, this is difficult to substantiate because the original posts from the moderators have since expired from the forums.
The topic of username changing on the RuneScape Forums remains on the "Do Not Suggest" list, where it has been listed for years. This list was reviewed on 22 September 2008; some other items were removed, but this was not. A forum moderator stated in September 2008 that username changing will never be possible in RuneScape. The following is quoted verbatim: "Generally when idea is in "do not suggest" list, it means that there's no need for additional input on that particular topic. It does NOT mean that it will never happen. However, in this case it does mean that. It has been stated (don't remember where though) that it is technically impossible due amount of references all account names have. I'm certain that sheer amount of such requests, cost included or not, would make the task massive if it was possible." Of course, forum moderators may not have the inside knowledge that a Jagex moderator has, and in any case policies are subject to change.
The FunOrb game Dungeon Assault gives players the ability to change a suffix at the end of their name. This development pattern of a concept starting in FunOrb and then appearing in RuneScape will follow a similar development pattern to the full screen mode. Mod MMG has also reportedly stated in his clan chat that a "name changing" feature will be available in MechScape. On 1 October, the long awaited name changing update was released, allowing players to change their character name (their login name will still be their original username) once every 28 days.
The option to change your username as of 12/1/2011 is only available to members and free players without a screen name. If you are a member or do not have a screen name, you can change your username by going to the bottom of the home page, and under Account, clicking "Profile and Settings", and then clicking "Change Username".
A player's character name is the name seen by other players. This is the name that appears on the Friends and Ignore lists, on the in-game chat and on the website (such as the Forums and Hiscores. On 1 October 2009, Jagex released an update allowing members of RuneScape or FunOrb to change their character name. The player's username (which is used to log into the game or website) remains the same.
A player who chooses to change their name will have it reserved for at least 35 days. Once a player changes their name, they cannot change it for 28 days. The name will be reserved during this time. Once this time is up, the name will be reserved for at least 7 more days (the longer the player had the name, the longer it is reserved).
When a player changes their character name, an icon will appear next to their name on the Friends and Ignore lists. When hovering the cursor over this icon, a player can see the previous names of people on their Friends or Ignore Lists. There is no such feature for the Clan Chat or any website features.
- ^ a b Terms & Conditions. Jagex Ltd. “You must not choose a username that infringes the rights of any third party, impersonates Jagex staff or other users, which is deliberately confusing or which is offensive, racist, obscene, hurtful, unlawful or otherwise inappropriate or which breaches the username requirements specified on our site or our Rules of Conduct. We reserve the right to make such assessment in our sole discretion, change any username for any reason or take such other action as we believe appropriate.”
- ^ Mod Jon H. Feedback About The Censor. RuneScape Forums pp. 1. Jagex Ltd. “This sticky is for you to post feedback about the censor. This could include: Words or usernames that you think should be censored, but are not; Words or usernames that are censored, but that you think should not be. We constantly review the censor, so please keep your feedback helpful and constructive.”
- ^ OfficialJagex (Mods Ajd and Zapp). Twitter / Official Jagex: @Boklau: we have a project .... status updates. Twitter. “we have a project this launching summer that to allow all players more freedom with their names, including them being changeable”
- ^ Mod Sophie. "I Need A Mod!" (Forum Help). Contact Us forum. Jagex Ltd. “There should be a name changing feature coming in the summer, so keep an eye out for this update and you should be able to change your name!”
- ^ Ajd. Twitter / Jagex Ltd: @Melvinkooi & @Ayush_S92: .... statuses. Twitter. “a name change system is being worked on, and we hope to have it out this year, but no ETA or further info yet.”
- ^ Ajd. Twitter / Jagex Ltd: @Melvinkooi we don't have .... statuses. Twitter. “we don't have an ETA for the Name Change system. Too many factors to say when it will be out. Assume 'far' to be safe.”
- ^ Gerhard, Mark. Q&A: Mark Gerhard's Answers. Developer Blogs. Jagex Ltd. Archived from the original on 2009-08-06. “Yes, we are planning to release a new display name system shortly. This will essentially allow you to change your in-game display name to be different from your login name.”
- ^ a b Janto 86. Stuck with a 5 years old name. Game Feedback forum pp. 1. Jagex Ltd. Archived from the original on 2009-06-02. “Here's a post from Tron and Craddock ... "Mod Tron Jagex Mod 03-May-2008 00:26:50 Last edited on 03-May-2008 00:28:57 by Mod Tron ... it remains the case that we are lacking a system which can change account names. I understand that this is something which would make a bunch of people happy, and this is why here at Jagex we are investigating all the possibilities. It is an absolute fact that we are always looking to improve our services for the better. So watch this space!! ... "Mod Craddock Jagex Mod 02-Mar-2008 22:51:32 Last edited on 02-Mar-2008 22:53:04 by Mod Craddock ... We also might eventually be introducing a system which allows players to change the name of their account. Watch this space." ... "Mod Timbo Jagex Mod 15-May-2009 10:34:10 Last edited on 15-May-2009 10:40:42 by Mod Timbo ... Name change capabilities are in the plans for the future although any further information cannot be disclosed at this minute in time. A lot of people now don't like their name as they've matured and it's only fair that they get the opportunity to do so!"”
- ^ a b "Changing your Runescape Name?" - Jagex Store Feedback, RuneScape Forums
- ^ a b "Be able to change your rs name" - Jagex Store Feedback, RuneScape Forums
- ^ "Possible Name Changes?" - Future Updates, RuneScape Forums
- ^ Do Not Suggest - List. RuneScape Forums pp. 1. Jagex. “Skills/Character Suggestions... Username changing”
- ^ Mage Rughar. Name Changing, I Know Rules.... RuneScape Suggestions forum pp. 1. Jagex.