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Devblog: Merging previously merged servers

By [Ankama]DOFUS - ADMIN - September 28, 2022, 16:00:00
AnkaTracker Announcements

A merger of merged servers. Long considered impossible, today this magical occurrence is finally within reach… In this article, we explain all the steps we went through to complete the server merger for October. (CW: The word "server" will be used with alarming frequency in this article.)

How do server mergers work in DOFUS?

In a nutshell, when we merge two servers, we don't actually move characters from the old server to the new one. We simply mark a link between the 2 servers. For example, when we merged the single-account servers to Ilyzaelle, we told each server that the Dramak server had now become the Ilyzaelle server. Then, the first time a given player logged into Ilyzaelle, the server would realize that the character was on Dramak and that it should move them to Ilyzaelle.

What was the problem?

The system in place does not allow for a link of a link to be established. Going back to our Ilyzaelle example: if we wanted to merge this server, we would specify a link between Ilyzaelle and the new server. However, for all the characters that are still on Dramak (i.e. the ones who had never logged in since the merger to Ilyzaelle in 2017), the new server would go to look for the character on Ilyzaelle the first time the player logged in after the second merger… and would fail to find that character, because it is still on Dramak.

How did we resolve the problem?

The technical changes were broken down into 2 parts:

  • Character migration: as explained above, it's not possible to establish a link of a pre-existing link. To achieve the desired effect, we opted for a different approach: forcing character migration. The goal is not to wait for the player to log in again to migrate his character from the old server to the new one. However, this requires a lot of computing effort for the server to migrate all of that character data (with their inventories, equipment, characteristics, achievements, houses, paddocks, quests, bank, etc.). This job is too big to do all in one go. So we came up with a way to force these migrations using a small part of the server's computational power at the same time you were continuing to play on these servers.  To give you an idea of the magnitude, for the Echo, Rubilax, Atcham and Crocabulia servers, this represents 11.8 million characters to migrate. These migrations were carried out during the whole month of August and September. To optimize this process, we made a second technical modification before that.
  • Deleting archived accounts: There are a certain number of archived accounts in the account databases (the vast majority of which are accounts that were banned for using bots). The problem is that the character data for these archived accounts hadn't necessarily been deleted from the game servers. As a result, these servers had a very long list of accounts, some of which were actually "useless". To avoid having to migrate all those archived accounts, we deleted all the associated data. For the Echo, Rubilax, Atcham and Crocabulia servers, we're talking about 8.78 million deleted accounts.

As a result of these two technical steps, we wound up with servers that no longer have any connection to the old servers, and are therefore ready to be merged.

Note that we've greatly simplified our explanation of this process to make it easier to understand. Even if the solution seems simple and obvious as we've presented it here, it's important to keep in mind that there are a huge number of technical constraints on any project that's been evolving for 18 years. This would never have been possible even a year ago, so hats off to the Server Developer team for making it happen.

So what happens next?

The server mergers will proceed in 3 steps. We'll get things started on October 11 with the fusion of the Echo, Crocabulia, Atcham and Rubilax servers. This merger will be an important first step – in part because it's the first merger, but also because it's the one with the most servers (4 servers being merged), one of which is Echo with its 10 links to older servers.

Two more mergers are then scheduled for October 25. Once again. And if all goes well, we'll do the last 3 mergers on November 2 November 8. This schedule was designed to let us anticipate any problems that may arise without interfering with the December update.

How did we decide on these mergers?

The decision to do these mergers was based on multiple factors:

  • The server populations are very different, which creates inequalities in the economy and access to resources, and makes it more difficult for us to balance these aspects.
  • Maintaining 16 servers is more difficult and expensive than maintaining 7, and the weekly maintenances take longer as a result.
  • Certain sparsely populated servers (especially the international servers) have been in need of a merge for a long time, in order to make it easier for people to connect and play in groups.
  • The technical constraints described above have prevented us from making progress for a long time. New ideas, new technological developments, and far-reaching technical upgrades that we've initiated over the past few years have combined to make these changes possible. So it was the perfect opportunity to move forward with these mergers.

In terms of population, the goal was to have servers with approximately the same number of simultaneous players as what Ilyzaelle can handle today. As for Agride, even though the economy is rather different than that of the other multi-account servers, we have chosen to fuse it with another server because its population would have been smaller than on other servers, and because we wanted to eliminate any major differences among servers.

After these mergers, there will be 7 servers in all (1 single-account server, 1 international server, 4 multi-account servers and one epic server). This concludes our article on server mergers. Thanks to all of you who had the wherewithal to read through the whole thing. We hope we've clearly explained all the steps that have led up to these mergers, and that the mergers will be a source of new connections and opportunities (and not just in the economic sense!) for everyone.
Happy gaming!

First Ankama intervention

Take note that contrary to what was announced, the last 2 mergers will take place on Tuesday, November 8 and not November 2. Thank you!

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Reactions 18
Score : 166

Thank You for your job, i'm here since 2011 on Ereziah and i hope Dofus will be live for more time in future! Long live Dofus!

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Score : 166

I forgot one important thing, I think you should somehow block the downward price run because this is how servers die, due to meta sets some items have very high prices and for everything else people run down to get rid of of these "non meta" objects. This thing must absolutely stop! firstly because pve players are always at a disadvantage compared to pvp players, secondly because the economy suffers from it on all fronts, when only a small circle of objects has value it forces other players to make greater efforts to keep up and thus be able to afford certain items! if the average prices were blocked and below the average price could not be dropped it would be good for everyone, for those who buy and for those who sell and the kama could be within everyone's reach. forgive me for my bad english - Daenys

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Score : 53

"After these mergers, there will be 7 servers in all (1 single-account server, 1 international server, 4 multi-account servers and one epic server)." You are talking about 1 signle account server so what happens with ilyzaelle and jahash? Cuz by international server you mean new server from merging Echo and other servers "Echo, Crocabulia, Atcham and Rubilax will be merged into a single international server." or am I missing something?

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Score : 272

Ilyzaelle and Jahash will merge

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Score : 53

Also in FAQ i found this For the mono-account servers, it will be reset to zero after the merger. (Refering to Kama Exchange ogrine rate).

1 0
Score : 110

thank you!

1 0
Score : 2

Do these mergers also impact Dofus Retro?

0 0

No, this announcement is only about Dofus 2.

Score : 3


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Score : 429

Do we have any confirmation on Ily Jahash merger date?

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The last server mergers will take place on November 8.

Hope that answers your question!

Take note that contrary to what was announced, the last 2 mergers will take place on Tuesday, November 8 and not November 2. Thank you!

Score : 84


Since the first merger, swapping characters in an account forces you to use the Authenticator every time you do. Is this a feature or a bug?

Also, certain maps are really laggy (Zaaps, Almanax temple, Equipment market, etc.). I don't remember Rushu ever being as crowded as Talkasha is, even in its heyday. I don't want to be a killjoy, but Ankama seems to be trying to put a shine on this, erm, spoor when it seems that the real reason for it is that people are simply not playing or have quit the game because of poorly considered changes to it. I am older and do tend to react negatively to any changes, but I soldier on. I can't say the same for my older guildmates. They get really cranky and lose it. The vast majority have gone. The few that are left have one foot out the door. This lagginess, in combination with the city changes, are breaking their resolve.

I can only hope that Talkasha isn't now going to be merged with another server. That isn't clear in the announcement. Performance would really suffer if this happens and there would likely be another mass exodus.

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Not to worry, it is not in our plans to merge TalKasha once more with another server in this wave of mergers.

As for the Authenticator issue, can you please explain it to me in more details so I can have a look?

I am sorry to hear some maps are laggy. Does clearing the game cache solve this issue?

It is our hope that this wave of mergers revitalizes the servers and their economy and provides a new incentive for players to return to a freshly renewed server where they can meet new players!

Thanks in advance.

Score : 844

Thanks for merging something into an already extremely laggy, overpopulated server where wanteds, profs, and archs are already impossible, new Ily will be so much fun.

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Score : 844

Zzz you made a never ending queue, good job.

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I'm sorry to heart. Can you explain the problem to me in more details so I can check it out?

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