WoW Detective

8 years ago

Lost a friend? Guild master (and the guild bank) transferred to another realm? WoW Detective comes to the rescue!

It is live now.

How to use it:

1. Go to the page of the character you want to check.
For example

2. Click to "Find transfers / renames" link. You'll find it on the right side of the page.

3. Look at the result

4. Check if the info is correct and click "yes" or "no".

We already had this search system in Sunwell and now I've reworked it from scratch.
It should be much more precise now and plus it's possible to query any character and the result is available in a few seconds - it scans millions of characters in real-time.

The index was built September 30, so there will be no detection after this date. I plan to rebuild the index every several days.

And another limitation exists at the moment: it won't be able to find some transfers as info of few guilds was lost.

At the moment it's on the test stage. Once I'm sure it's working correctly, the results will be available on

Update: It is live now:


  1. volkvin
    Rating: +1 [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Seems like there's another limitation... Cannot find any of the Russian players i tried to search... other than that, Thank You Kernel!
  2. Kernel
    8 years ago
    Probably it's a problem of IE with international characters in URL. I'll look at it.
  3. Shinja
    Shinja The Fallen
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Glad to see the return of this feature =)
  4. Carly
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    I just tried it with my own main and nothing came up and I know I have transferred servers 2x and 2 name changes
  5. Kernel
    8 years ago
    The reason is some info was lost.
    Now it should work better for new transfers.
  6. Slashcry
    Arpexia Gambit
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Hey there, glad to see this Feature back!
    But how long did it take if a player did a Faction Change and a Server Transfer to find him? I have the Original Name of him but the tool didnt found any Transfers or renames :(
  7. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    I hope there is a way to opt out of this. It is unfortunate that some of us made transfers due to internet safety concerns and really do not want it made easier to be tracked down by those we are attempting to stay far away from.
  8. volkvin
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Unless you are one of the people who snatches gb's or sells something online, you shouldn't worry... Transfering is enough for most people to stop bugging you...
  9. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    No, I have never done anything remotely near theft of guild banks. And I was also tracked down after making a server transfer so no, it was not enough.
  10. volkvin
    Rating: -1 [-][+]
    8 years ago
    In any case I do not think that 'Detective' violates any privacy rights. All it does is suggests how similar one armory page is to another. So at the end, I would like for this feature to keep working and improve for the reasons above. Because thiefs can have exatly the same reason for not wanting Detective to work. As it would make easier to track the down by the people who they wanted to stay far away from. And that is exactly my intent.
  11. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    I can appreciate what you are saying. However, I would like to understand how your concern of guild bank thievery is more important than my wanting to protect my family from sexual predators.
  12. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Also in parallel to what you posted above, predators can have exactly the same reason for wanting Detective to work.

    If theft from your guild bank is a concern, you have the option to block people before any theft could occur. Unfortunately I do not.
  13. volkvin
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Sound's like a lawsuit. I'm sure Blizzard would love to hear about it...
  14. Miyamoto
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    There shouldn't be to much of an issue as this predator would never be able to find you unless you release personal information to him otherwise your family would always be safe. Unless something like that happened then i apologize as this subject is very touchy. But its a great tool to attempt and find a friend you've lost years ago, i know i have.
  15. Aavryn
    Rating: +1 [-][+]
    8 years ago
    Is there any way to "force update" this feature? To ask the engine to focus search a name that hasn't come up yet?
  16. Kernel
    8 years ago
    You can force update the new guild of the character (if you know his new guild). Then the character should be searchable.
  17. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    I understand what you are saying Miyamoto, but despite a parents best efforts, children do make mistakes. Thankfully mine have not yet. I still want a safe play environment without being chased by a game stalker.

    Volkvin, Blizzard does not care. Despite my numerous attempts in reporting said player, they never did anything. This player was finally shamed off the server we were on, and ended up where I was transferring characters to. My children were not around when the decision was made and we started transferring.

    Kernal, I implore you. Will there be an opt out feature for this? Or would you please block me out until I can make transfers again safely?
  18. LittleDri
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    I have to agree with Cynnful on this one. I changed guilds because of a guy stalking me, but he followed each time. I finally wanted a fresh start where I'm not suspicious of every whisper so I changed realm and name. The 2 problems I have with this system is that
    1) If I would like to join a new guild that's pretty decent, they will do background checks on new players, so to see that I have changed guilds (and then name and server) over a short space of time looks badly on my fresh start and may affect the success of my application.
    2) If this allows the stalker to find me again in game, it will be enough for me to quit wow altogether - I'm not going through all the guild and name changes again.
    3) This *stalking* wasn't a threat against my life or violence so it's not exactly reportable, it was a desperate obsessive crush, thus harder to pin down but still horribly intrusive from a crazy person.

    I would opt out from this. Female players in my opinion are more at risk from privacy issues and you need to consider this.
  19. volkvin
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    LoL i'd just stop playing games all together) i wish this (stalkin) was my biggest problem in life, lol...

    nowadays people are so sensitive, they can't even tell someone to fuckoff... or ignore someone (not ingame ignore)... if everyone you meet online gives you that much trouble i feel sorry for you meeting dickheads in real life...
  20. Buckling
    Rating: +1 [-][+]
    8 years ago
    With regard to your first point: guild/realm switches for the right reasons is something you can always account for. The only way for a guild's ability to track your full history to work against you is if you have something to hide from them. This is then a privacy matter, which WoWProgress has nothing to do with if you ask me. They merely fingerprint the armory information that Blizzard has decided to divulge about your character and provide similarity score algorithms for that information. If you have a problem with this, take it up at the source of the information, ala Blizzard. Go write a letter to them to implement armory invisibility or something.

    With regard to your second and third points. If you let some stalker chase you off (either from the realm or game), you're not very confident a girl/woman now are you? There's something called an ignore list. I cannot imagine that if somebody dodges your ignore list by whispering from other characters, that Blizzard does not act at some point. Even if the nature of the whispers is not in direct violation of their policy, dodging ignores endlessly is. Now if for some reason you decided to switch realms anyway (which most likely isn't just to get rid of a stalker but also because of an opportunity to join a nice guild), then you should laugh if somebody actually spends money to follow you and realize that it works even more against them.
  21. Cynnful
    Rating: [-][+]
    8 years ago
    And here we go.

    I find it curious how easy it is for the assumed educated to use the "ignore list" answer as a do-all fall back for any grief we receive from other players. *IF* the ignore list also banned ANY character from an account, I would have no issue whatsoever, but it doesn't.

    Both Volkvin and Buckling are presuming that another person should feel similar to them and if a person doesn't they are inferior or their issues are of less importance. Telling someone to fuck off is not a viable answer to the problem and more often than not, ignorant behavior will escalate things.

    You are thinking for others and assuming superiority. It is up to each individual to establish their own boundaries of what is acceptable or not. I also have the right to do whatever I deem necessary in order to protect my boundaries. I don't need something in my face to set boundaries.

    I suppose I should just let it slide that some sick jerk described in great detail what he was sexually going to do to my 8 year old son. It wasn't enough to put this guy on the ignore list, he kept at it for weeks on different characters including sexually propositioning my son. The caveat to this was that the language he used was just under Blizzard's radar for the language filters.

    When I did report the incident the first time, from MY account and not my son's, Blizzard threatened me with account cancellation for being on my son's account. I was reading what was going on from my son's monitor and reported it from my computer and account. Yes, this is how Blizzard treated me.

    After I stepped in and asked said stalker to leave my son alone, he started in on me using the same language. Every time I logged in it would start. I can't tell you how many times my ignore list became full.

    No one should have to go through this. I'm glad you two above can laugh it off like it's nothing, like it's some kind of joke. I'm glad you have never had your playing continuously disrupted, not just for hours but for weeks. I am saddened that you can so easily trivialize matters that are important to another, such as respecting a players desire to play in a safe environment.

    Even the Game Master I talked to, on several different occasions was baffled. He could do nothing except wish me the best and acknowledge that there should be some kind of option, whether in game or as an addon, to completely block keyboard assholes.

    I ask again and will be sending an email as well;

    Kernal, would Wowprogress please voluntarily add an opt-out feature to Detective, or could players such as myself ask to be removed from tracking for a certain period of time so that we can safely transfer characters?

    I would appreciate an answer, thank you.
  22. Kernel
    8 years ago
    1. I'm thinking about option to hide characters but haven't decided yet about details.

    2. The game is for 12+ and probably that's the reason the GM didn't understand you.

    3. The game is probably safest thing ever for 12+ and this is why I think such requests are not serious.
  23. Kernel
    8 years ago
    I've replied to your email - it's possible to hide your characters manually as an exception.
  24. Kernel
    8 years ago
    The abuse problem solution:

    SpamMeNot Addon:

    * Optionally ignores whispers from people below a set level.

    Just install this addon and set minimal whisper level to something like 40 or so.
    That's it.
  25. Leigord
    Rating: [-][+]
    7 years ago
    This doesn't seem to work at all for Ravenholdt anymore?
  26. Carnage9270
    Rating: [-][+]
    7 years ago
    Sorry to necro this one, but I am curious...did something happen to break Detective for some North American realms around Jan 2010?
  27. holythoaee
    Rating: [-][+]
    4 years ago
    not working anymore?
  28. DruidPrincess
    Zìva Passion
    Rating: [-][+]
    3 years ago
    dont think so
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