Saturday, 9 October 2010

Shared Topic: What’s In A Name?

Post soundtrack: “Who? Where? Why?” by Jesus Jones

I’m usually not motivated enough to take part in the shared topics on Blog Azeroth, but this one caught me at a time when I’m reassessing my naming habits in preparation for adding new characters to my roster, come 4.0.1 and Cataclysm.  (Warning: incoming stream of consciousness!)


I initially touched on my naming habits a looooooong time ago, but for those new here it can all be traced back to a mouse.  I love the name Dinglemouse, a character from Spike Milligan’s book Badjelly the Witch (which I really need to buy a copy of).  When I initially considered using the name for one of my characters, I decided to save it and try a variation first, which was Pringlerouse.  Variations begat variations, and soon I had seven dwarves to play with (although Fingle has since moved servers, leaving me with an open spot in the roster, and there’s still no Snow White to keep them in line).

My current assortment on Dath’Remar, nominally my home server, is Pringlerouse (80 rogue), Kringlelouse (80 hunter), Dinglemouse (80 warrior, and star of my last few blog posts), Ringleprouse (80 rogue), Mingledouse (80 priest), Binglerouse (80 pally), Tingleflouse (35 druid and the only non-dwarf) and Ninglethouse (very disposable 58 DK and AH mule).  On other servers my highest level characters are server transferee Finglethouse, an 80 dwarf priest and Pringle, an 80 gnome rogue on Argent Dawn (home of SAN-US), and Dinglemouse, a 70 troll rogue on Aman’Thul.

While Pringle, Dingle, Mingle and Ringle are pretty much guaranteed to stay around on Dath, I’m looking at re-rolling (and probably renaming) Kringle and Bingle with 4.0.1, and replacing (and definitely renaming) Tingle with a Worgen druid come Cataclysm.  My quandary now is how best to name these new characters -  it’s been hard to come up with names that fitted the system I’d been using yet sounded as good as the original ones (Kringlelouse never really rang true, and Binglerouse sounds more like a gnome), and I’ve been resistant to the idea of breaking tradition (at least, until now).

Incidentally, one little exercise which has helped me firm up the identities behind the names of my characters was a collection of little thumbnail descriptions I did of each of the main characters when I entered the Cataclysm Comic Contest a few weeks back on Disciplinary Action.  (The winners’ prizes were really quite delightful, by the way)

Mingledouse, the pathologically pessimistic priest.
Dinglemouse, the timid tank.
Kringlelouse, the hunter who’s allergic to pets.
Binglerouse, the paladin atheist.
Ringleprouse, the clumsy yet ridiculously lucky rogue.
Pringlerouse, not a serial killer, honest.

Needless to say, while I’m definitely not a roleplayer it was fun to come up with simple hooks upon which I can hang the identities of my characters (even if they are just currently purely cosmetic hooks – although the behind-the-webcomic-scenes post on DA today has left me… a little contemplative of possibilities).

But I digress.  (Like usual)

As I said above, for my dwarves my current system hasn’t really scaled beyond four of the first five, which means it’s as good a time as any to come up with something new (and probably more individual this time round), which means time to hit some online name generators to see what I can find which sounds good (probably my only criteria).

As far as other characters go, well, they’ve pretty much inherited dwarven names out of habit.  My troll desperately needs a unique name of his own, and I’ll have to get creative if I roll some more horde-side characters (including a goblin, of course).  As names are pretty much forever (or until you spend some cold, hard cash), they’re not something I want to come to regret.  Time to cogitate.

After all, the Cataclysm is coming, so what better time to make some sweeping changes.  Not just to how you play, but also to who.