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The Name Thing

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What is the name of your game and perhaps some of the characters in it? Names are one of the hardest things to come up with for me, so don't be surprised if mine are a little dull: Game: Light in the Darkness (That's a nice game) 6 of my many Characters: Cailan - Dark Shadow Male - Normal Sayla - Light Shadow Male - Overly Kind, Cailan's girlfriend Cobweb - Giant Spider Male - Different Wind - Phlack (Male we think) - Loves to eat Caventi - Night Mantis Male - Loves Booze to extremes, cannot get drunk Vemisan - Human - Mysterious prophet, selfish Also feel free to comment on these. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Cangor Blue Blaze Games, LLC. BlueBlazeGames@hotmail.com No website as of yet. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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The right name, I agree, can sometimes be difficult to come up with depending on the story, the game, the atmosphere, etc. But above all, I think you should go with whatever names you devise and see appropriate because it helps you to develop your own style of characters and their personalities. Names don't always have to be perfect for the situation though, because in actuality not everyone's name is for whatever they do. But I think that in a well-developed story, a character's name gradually begins to suit them no matter what it is. Meaning, it grows upon the reader/viewer, and they eventually understand the reasoning behind that name choice.

As for the names you’ve picked here, the only ones that I don't favor are Cobweb and Wind. Those two are just too simple and bland. The rest are catchy, new, and unique. Well, I guess Cobweb or Wind could be unique names for those creatures, but they don't fit in my mind.

I understand though that those may be temporary names. A suggestion I have when you do use temp names just as a place-holder like that is to change around the temporary name itself to see if forms a fun, new and creative name. For example, using Cobweb… call him Cobbo, or Cobew instead. With Wind, try Wid or Wondo. Granted those aren't the greatest of names, but they're a bit more complex and unique than Cobweb or Wind.

But again, go with the names you feel are best suited for your game and those which you like the most. That way you'll have more fun and an easier time when developing a character whose name you approve of.

Take care, and good luck with the "name thing". :)

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I personally have a fairly easy time of creating names. Well I normally have an easy time of it once I know what the character is supposed to be like ethnically, etc. A couple of the names I've got from different things are:

Trying not to go too far in depth when it comes to story line:
Ma'Lotho - Valkyrie
Methos - Soldier Trainer
Alrothek - General
Ter'Lenth - A character name that I originally created for table tops. Now is the main character/narrator when it comes to the majority of my stories.
Anya - Highschool girl (who turns vampire or some other mythical creature)
Seath - Villager
Kit - Anthro-Human based on a cat.

and many more =p

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A system of naming which I use is that I usually take a word that describes the person, character, or item and then I make a non-english word that sounds 'simliar' or is made out of multiple words that describe the thing I'm naming.

An example, say you had a character who is an evil villian who wants to take over the world.

So the words to describe him would be
-eccentric
-diabolical
-egotistical

so his name might be a combination of all three using letters and syllables. ec'cen'tric + dia'bol'ical + 'ego'tistical which makes 'cenbolego' and I would shorten it to 'Bolego'. And there is a villians name of course you have to do a lot of fiddling around to get the names you want but at least its a process and you know where to start and how to end. Just make a list of a couple hundred or so and if the name fits the character use it.

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I don't find naming characters hard at all. I usually just grab my handy book of baby names (you'd be surprised at the resources you find useful), find a name that jumps out at me for the character, and start playing with the letter combinations until I've reworked it to my taste.

I'll also take words that define the character's personality, dig up a foreign version of the word, and then play the letter game.

Once upon a time I kept a bookmark of websites with surnames and family names for several diferent ethnic groups.

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I use the same system as 5MinuteGaming, with the addition that I generally put a double consonant in all my names and otherwise change the spelling to try to make the pronounciation and accent more clear. Although I also like meaningful native-american style names - in my novel I combine the two by naming a character, for example, Attranath, and then mentining that this name means Loyal Heart.

I generally don't have a problem naming my characters, but I'm having big problems trying tofigure out what to call the totemic animals in my novel. >.< I want the names to communicte what te animal looks like and represents without being actual animal names because these are alien animals after all, why would they have earth animal names? Should I call them by their roles, e.g. 'Trickster', by a modification of their nearest equivalent earth animal, e.g. 'Tyger', or by an onomatopoeia that communicates their personality, e.g. 'Fwooper'? Maybe I should combine two of these to make heroic epithets, e.g. 'Dawg the Loyal' or 'True-hearted Dawg'? What would you advise?

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Sun, are you using the concept that these totemic spirits were a type of "people" - meaning they once (or currently do) walked the planet as both physical and spiritual beings? and that their corresponding animal are descendants of those beings?

If so, you can simply give them actual names and refer to them with their "title", i.e. Anansi the Trickster (or Anansi the Spider). The gods of Egyptian mythology were easily identified by name, and most had a corresponding animal head as their totemic creature. The southwestern native american tribes had Iktomi, the spider trickster; even Coyote had many names depending on the tribe, including Italapas (Chinook) or Skinkuts (Lakota), or simply Old Man.


Then later you can simply refer to them as The Trickster, the Warrior, and so forth.

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Quote:
Original post by EricTrickster
Once upon a time I kept a bookmark of websites with surnames and family names for several diferent ethnic groups.


One pretty good website with names and meanings is:

http://www.behindthename.com

I've used it a number of times when coming up with names for characters (if only for inspiration for a name).

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:! More replies then I ever anticipated! Thanks, guys.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Cangor
Blue Blaze Games, LLC.
BlueBlazeGames@hotmail.com
No website as of yet.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Pronunciation is also important in choosing a name.

Aet'horyan - may have some really neat meaning in ancient Esperantian, but most people will never care to find that out.

But if players have to put effort into pronouncing this name every time they read it, it can take away from the story.

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Gonna have to agree with the "difficulty to pronounce" rule here. I've gone whole books/games/etc. pronouncing a name totally wrong just because it's easier and faster. This would totally slaughter the purpose behind taking so long to pick the perfect name.

Also, I go with the baby name/meaning rule here. I guess it's a mixture there - I take the description of a character/place/etc and look it up in a baby name meaning dictionary. Usually one name strikes me, or you can always modify one a bit.

And finally, to go way back to the original post - my main problem is that the game I'm working on now is a sim-type with a BUNCH of items. The difficulty is coming up with the item names and descriptions, especially in a small space. This can be just as challenging/rewarding as a character name.

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