Midnight Shadows

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Sobriquet's Avatar
Posts: 8,440
Name: Tom (M)
Status: Away
Let's face it, before you can really start playing a character, you need to know what their name is. How do you come up with your character's name?

Is it a random choice you plucked out of the air or does it have a special meaning? Where did their surname come from? It's hard to find the perfect name for your character at times, so how do you settle on a choice and go with it?

02-19-2012, 11:40 AM
Gemini Shine
Shadow Child
Gemini Shine's Avatar
Posts: 267
Name: Sarah (F)
Status: Offline
More often than not, I have the AI chosen first. Then I will stare at the AI and pull names out of the air that seem to fit the face in front of me. Then I'll flip through a few different photos to see if the name suits different angles and situations. If it doesn't, I start staring again. If it does, I run with it. As for surnames, I tend to repeat the first name over and over until I find a surname that, when put with the first name, runs off the tongue.

When in doubt, or picking names from other languages, I'll use Behind The Name. Moments of extreme difficulty, I pull out our old baby name book.

02-19-2012, 11:46 AM
Swan Song
Serenity's Avatar
Posts: 6,711
Name: Cornelia (F)
Status: Offline
I pretty much do it like Sarah does AI first, then find a name that fits the face. I have a list of names I would like to use for characters that I got by jotting down every nice name I found in books/TV/movies/other random sources. So when creating a new character I just use the AI and go down the list to see which fits best. I don’t go for meaningful names much unless in specific situations such as games in magical worlds (for example my character in Immortal Incarnations over in Perfect Ending had ‘White’ as a surname when she was the goddess of snow). Even then I don’t always bother.

Surnames are harder because I’m very picky about them. I need to find one that sounds good with the first name and fits the character’s nationality (actually that goes for first names too). And it usually takes me a longer time to figure out the surname. I don’t always find the perfect name/combination of names, but I usually settle for ones I can definitely live with. After all, you only have to use it a lot!
Losing him was blue like I’d never known
Missing him was dark grey all alone
Forgetting him was like trying to know somebody you've never met
But loving him was red

02-19-2012, 12:00 PM
Weak Fantasy
Immortal's Avatar
Posts: 2,264
Name: Todd (M)
Status: Offline
Mine name themselves. That sounds incredibly stupid when I say it like that but as they come together, it's like they just know their name and offer it up to me. Either that or they sort of pick the one that appeals to them. For first names, at least. But I follow Corni's approach there as far as nationality. If my character is French, his name isn't likely to be Bob. As far as last names go? Well, that's a challenge in it's own right and Corn Pops and I have the same approach to that as well.
Fear is a choice you embrace.

02-20-2012, 06:40 AM
two souls in a ghost town
Ganymede's Avatar
Posts: 5,419
Name: Nicholas (M)
Status: Offline
I either try to give my characters' names a meaning, or try to fit a certain mood/idea, depending on the game. Like, for Eris, I named her after the goddess of chaos, discord and strife. I don't think she necessarily embodies that, but I think there's an undercurrent of those emotions in her, probably influencing everything she does. There's definitely strife between her and her mother, and if she continues on her path of experimenting with dark magic and the well of shadows, she very well could embody those qualities.

Surnames are tricky for me, too. In most cases, I'll fit the nationality of the character/AI I chose and find something that goes well with the first name. Using Eris again, I wanted to implement both an Asian and a Roman sounding name to emphasize the combination of those cultures/aesthetics in Magi society. Yehenara being close to Chinese and Avitas being Latin.

money, power & glory
I wanna take you for all that you got

11-26-2012, 05:23 AM
The Red King
A Cat of a Different Coat
Tyrant's Avatar
Posts: 5,873
Name: Aody (M)
Status: Offline
I usually will choose names based upon the game's conventions. The only game I am active in creating characters, so I can only speak for those. My Magi characters have Roman names because that was one of the strong influences in creating that side. Similarly, Irrulius had a Roman name, despite being a Morlock, is because of his mother's love for the Magi culture. Most other Morlock NPCs had short, sharp names, such as Rit and Vas. This was done to highlight their alien nature.

The Aquilae characters are all very much based on British names. They tend to be simple and there's definitely some Germanic and French influences as well.

Finally, Oisin got his name because the Renegades seemed very Celtic-ish when he was created.
Watch your little black sheep run.

12-04-2012, 10:49 PM
Cyndrome's Avatar
Posts: 841
Name: Cyn(thia) (F)
Style: Eclipse
Status: Offline
Mostly I pick names "out of the hat", but I also like to put a little meaning behind it.

Helena Petrova was because the first name of my AI, which I love. Petrova because it sounded Russian. So no real thought process behind that name.

Alice de Jager. Alice to name this character after Alice in Wonderland, because Alice must feel like the original Alice at the moment. De Jager is a Dutch surname which translates to "the Hunter". I am familiar with the American writingstyle of Dutch surnames (American would be Alice DeJager, right?). But because my character is rather strange, I decided to keep the Dutch way of writing it.

Anyway, outside the RPG world, in my stories, I am highly influenced by Greek and Roman Mythology. Also I have an Irish baby-names dictionary, which I use quite often as well. Love Irish names.

12-07-2012, 11:38 PM
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