Blizzard have implemented a new ID system in Battle.net that acts like Real-ID minus the real name and plus the privacy. Basically, you choose a Nickname that makes you universally identifiable no matter what game you are in (exactly like Real-ID) without having to tell people your full name. Horay!
You can however, choose any name you want, even if it is taken. They will use a 4 digit identifier code to unique-ify the thousands of Legolas, Batman and KimKardashian names. Full FAQ here. It is available now in your Battle.net account management page, so shoot on ahead and grab your non-unique 3-12 character names!
A BattleTag is a unified, player-chosen nickname that will identify you across all of Battle.net – in Blizzard Entertainment games, on our websites, and in our community forums. Similar to Real ID, BattleTags will give players on Battle.net a new way to find and chat with friends they’ve met in-game, form friendships, form groups, and stay connected across multiple Blizzard Entertainment games. BattleTags will also provide a new option for displaying public profiles.
When will BattleTags go live?
We will soon begin limited testing of some features and functionality of BattleTags in the Diablo III beta test, and the feature will be available to Diablo III players at launch. BattleTags will be integrated into other Blizzard games and services such as World of Warcraft and StarCraft II at some point in the future, but we don’t have exact rollout plans to share just yet.
Will my BattleTag be unique?
A player’s BattleTag is not unique, so you won’t need to worry about whether your preferred name is available. You can use any name you wish, as long as it adheres to the BattleTag Naming Policy. Only one BattleTag can be associated with each Battle.net account.
If my BattleTag isn’t unique, what makes me uniquely identifiable? How will I know I’m adding the right friend to my friends list?
Each BattleTag is automatically assigned a 4-digit BattleTag code, which combines with your chosen name to create a unique identifier (e.g. AwesomeGnome#3592). Your BattleTag and code are viewable when you log in to the Battle.net website and within the Diablo III beta client, and can be shared with other players who want to send you a friend request manually. You will also be able to send BattleTag friend requests list within the context of a game (by clicking a person’s BattleTag when he or she sends you a message, for example) without knowing their BattleTag code. In either case, each player must mutually agree to become BattleTag friends.
I’m going to go ahead and say it because it is bugging me. Why do Blizzard feel the need to allow players to have the same name as other players at all costs, forcing them to implement a somewhat obscure ID tag at the end to resolve the issue of unique identity? Is it so bad to have a unique name? Did they not learn how annoying it is when you log on to SC2 and see 20,000 posers with the name (eG)Idra and DaKim?
Sense of identity, please.