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Name generator - sort of
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Straxus
Lieutenant Commander
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Joined: 30 May 2017
Posts: 101
Location: Norway

PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2020 9:00 am    Post subject: Name generator - sort of Reply with quote

Sorry if this has been mentioned before, but I had to come up with a bunch of NPC names yesterday, and instead of looking up Star Wars name generators I got inspired by Ben Burtts work with alien languages and turned to Google Translate.

I had a guy that drinks a lot and likes to gamble, so I typed in "Drunk gambler" and picked some exotic (for me and my players) language, until I found something nice, tweaked it a little bit and that was it. (M'levi Kamari)
Another NPC is four-armed dealer at a casino, so I typed in "four hands" and did the same.

The nice thing with this method is that you can give NPCs that have something in common (eg same species, or from the same town) different names that still feel connected, by using the same language. Similarly you can make an outsider stand out even more by using a very different language for that character. It's also a fun easter egg for the players if they find out, and personally I like it when I know there's a meaning behind the name. Just check first what languages your players know! Very Happy

Most importantly, for me, this is a much faster method to get a name I like than to go through the other name generators I've found online.
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RyanDarkstar
Commander
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Joined: 04 Dec 2014
Posts: 279
Location: Chambersburg, PA, USA, Earth

PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for this. Online generators do get redundant pretty quick.
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Raven Redstar
Rear Admiral
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Joined: 10 Mar 2009
Posts: 2482
Location: Pullman, WA

PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2020 12:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Name generator - sort of Reply with quote

Straxus wrote:
Sorry if this has been mentioned before, but I had to come up with a bunch of NPC names yesterday, and instead of looking up Star Wars name generators I got inspired by Ben Burtts work with alien languages and turned to Google Translate.

I had a guy that drinks a lot and likes to gamble, so I typed in "Drunk gambler" and picked some exotic (for me and my players) language, until I found something nice, tweaked it a little bit and that was it. (M'levi Kamari)
Another NPC is four-armed dealer at a casino, so I typed in "four hands" and did the same.

The nice thing with this method is that you can give NPCs that have something in common (eg same species, or from the same town) different names that still feel connected, by using the same language. Similarly you can make an outsider stand out even more by using a very different language for that character. It's also a fun easter egg for the players if they find out, and personally I like it when I know there's a meaning behind the name. Just check first what languages your players know! Very Happy

Most importantly, for me, this is a much faster method to get a name I like than to go through the other name generators I've found online.


I do this quite often! I never thought to suggest it to folks.
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Whill
Supreme Chancellor (Owner/Admin)


Joined: 14 Apr 2008
Posts: 7301
Location: Columbus, Ohio, USA, Earth, The Solar System, The Milky Way Galaxy

PostPosted: Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm really horrible at thinking up names for characters. Great ideas here. I do stuff like this, and I also use this book I picked up back in the 90s...

https://www.amazon.com/Writers-Digest-Character-Naming-Sourcebook/dp/0898796326/

It breaks up name meanings by culture, and within each culture by gender. I highly recommend it. There may be more recent editions.
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jmanski
Arbiter-General (Moderator)


Joined: 06 Mar 2005
Posts: 2061
Location: Kansas

PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2020 11:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a lot of Latin or Spanish translations and tweak it just a little bit; sometimes you get some pretty neat stuff.

Other times I simply take an actor I like and tweak the name a little, especially for NPCs, to make it easier to remember voices/actions and such.
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