Players have two kinds of names: a Display Name and a Username. Usernames are unique identifiers that can be different from or the same as a user's cosmetic Display Name.
The unique Username system was added to ease communication and player interaction across different services in Habitica. Details were first announced on the Habitica blog.
Usernames versus Display Names
Your Username is a unique identifier (no two Habiticans can share a Username). It can contain only letters a to z and A to Z, digits 0 to 9, hyphens (-), and underscores (_). Your Username can be used for logging in to Habitica if you have added a password and email address to your account.
Username Visibility and Privacy
To add more functionality to Usernames, in November 2018, an update was released to make your Username visible when using Habitica's social features such as the Tavern, Guilds, Parties, Private Messages, and Challenges. If you do not want your current Username to be visible (e.g., if it contains your real name or a personal e-mail address), you can change it as described below.
If you created your Habitica account before about October 3, 2018, your Username will not become visible to other players until you have confirmed it. The confirmation process started in October and is described in more detail below. If you have not confirmed your Username, it will not become visible but you will need to confirm it before you can continue to use Habitica.
If you created your Habitica account after October 3, 2018, your Username was confirmed as part of the registration process.
If you signed up for Habitica using Facebook or Google as your authentication method, then you were assigned a randomly generated Username. You can change it at any time as described below. This will not affect how you log in to Habitica.
Confirmation of Usernames
Your Username must be confirmed by you before other players can see it. If you have used the website or official Android and iOS apps since October 3, 2018, then your Username is already confirmed. If you have not used Habitica since before then, when you next use the website or app you will receive a popup asking you to confirm your Username. The popup will let you change it if desired before confirming it.
Can I Change my Username and Display Name?
You can change them both as many times as you like. However, if you change your Username, your old Username will become available for someone else to claim. If it is claimed by someone else, you will not be able to use it while they are using it.
It is recommended that you do not change your Username often because that would interfere with the smooth running of features that use your Username. For example, when other players use your Username to invite you to a Party, only your current Username will work. If players try to use an old Username (e.g., one displayed in an old chat message), the invitation will either fail or invite whoever is currently using your old Username.
It is safe to change your Display Name as often as you wish. This is the recommended way to personalize your identity in Habitica, for example to celebrate your productivity successes or to give yourself a temporary name that matches the theme of a Grand Gala.
Why are there Different Names?
Display Names are a fun cosmetic feature and aren't unique. Two or more players can share a Display Name and there are fewer limitations on how you can style them.
Your Username, however, belongs uniquely to you and make it easier for players and staff to contact you.
Before Usernames were made public, your account could be uniquely identified only with your User ID (UUID), which is the arcane string of numbers and letters shown in the official Android and iOS apps in the Authentication section in the settings area and on the website in your profile and at User Icon > Settings > API.
Uses of Usernames
- Confirmed Usernames are visible on your posts under your Display Name. Your Display Name is the primary label above your posts. This includes your posts in the Tavern, Guilds, your Party, and Private Messages.
- Your Username is searchable in those social areas that you have recently posted. It is also be visible in Challenges participant lists, your profile, and Guild and Party membership lists.
- Players can use your Username to invite you to a Guild or Party.
- You can be @mentioned in chats using your Username. Typing a player's Display Name or Username will both bring up an auto-complete field to help you select the right person.
- You can use your Username to identify your account when contacting staff for support.
New features that the unique Username system allows will be rolled out gradually. For example, the features below might be added at some future time:
- Start a private message conversation using another player's Username.
- Receive notifications when you are @mentioned in chat areas.
- Display tweaks to show the Username in more places.