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What inspires your charcters' names?
Real life names 25 (15.5%)
Allusions to other works (characters or places from books, movies, songs, etc.) 27 (16.8%)
Names with a certain meaning 19 (11.8%)
Random name generator 14 (8.7%)
Whatever comes off the top of your head 55 (34.2%)
Other 21 (13%)
Total Votes: 161
How do you come up with your character names?
Topic Started: Aug 30 2011, 09:51 PM (4,913 Views)
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Come on and slam
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I'm just curious: what inspires your characters' names? Vote for as many as you like, but if you tend to use one method the most, please explain. Also, if you'd like to explain the names of any of your characters, feel free.
V5 concepts:
Randall Cimora: aspiring music producer, easygoing, space cadet, new kid
     Currently blowing his Christmas money in Life is like a broken record
Leah Chapel: classic teenage rebel, sneaky, pessimistic, the un-favorite
     Re-upping in LSMFT
Milo Richter: consummate professional, intellectual, debater, self-conscious
     Convincing someone of what they already believe in Variables...

Lovely pics

In other news...
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
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my v5 character "THUGHUNTER" is a meaningful name on account of that he hates thugs so much that he will hunt them, also he is sort of a loud dude hence the all capitals. it is also a reference to Thughunter, a racehorse that Queen Elizabeth II has blown all her money on. this is a real horse and thus it is also a real world name.

I actually just go by names that I think are cool and that "fit" without being overly meaning-stuffed. Jeremy Franco also had to have a name that could be shortened to something that rolls off the tongue when you make it into a name of a company.
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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"That’s not a prediction, that’s a spoiler.”
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I actually come up with my names via Ouija board.

I just use names that I think are appropriate. I tend to go for names that are distinct and could stand out from a crowd (which explain all the weird last names.) I usually spend waaaay too much time in the naming process as I should.
Edited by Ciel, Sep 3 2011, 12:34 AM.

G052 - Reed, Jasmine - 0% - Falchion - START END
G060 - Pfeiffer, Scout - 100% - Sawlaska Thunderfuck 5000 - START
G025 - Reyes, Audrey - 0% - Nunchaku - START END

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You've been counting stars, now you're counting on me
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I picked the bottom three.

I have a giant book of baby names by my desk, so that's where a lot of them come from. I also refer to internet lists of common names for the birth years of my characters. Sometimes I make stuff up that flows. Sometimes I pick names that are a pain to pronounce, just because they are spelled cool ways (also they make podcasts more amusing).

Sometimes, I regret certain choices in retrospect. As such, I have started googling my characters' names before submitting them.

So, basically, I pick names that sound nice, are fitting for the time, place and character, and often come from some random list. I checked other for "spending a bunch of time cross-referencing birth year name popularity data charts with good patterns of syllable stresses that stick in your head".
Juliette Sargent drawn by Mimi and Ryuki
Alton Gerow drawn by Mimi
Lavender Ripley drawn by Mimi
Phillip Olivares drawn by Ryuki
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MK Kilmarnock
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Hate, hate, HATE!!!
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Yep, same as everybody else. They're just names I like the sound or look of.

Liam "Brook" Brooks: So, uh, my last name is Rooks, and my mother's last name is Brooks (and Brooks happens to be a prominent name in my family). So I figured I'd use this one at least once. Liam is just a name I really like; I've never met anybody with the name Liam in person, but I'm a big fan of both Mr. Neeson and Mr. O'Brien, so... again, why the hell not?

Ivan Kuznetsov: Ah, Ivan. Another name I'm extremely fond of. We had this next-door neighbor as a kid named Ivan Prebble and... well, he was kind of a dick, but I just thought the name was super badass. The existence of Ivan Drago certainly didn't hurt. Kuznetsov was just the first Russian name I could find that wasn't 'Dragunov' or something silly like that, because I wanted it to seem less than stereotypical. Hilarious, 'Kuznetsov' is the Russian equivalent to 'Johnson' in that it is a very, very common name.

Felicia Carmichael: Felicia is a pretty name, there's no rhyme or reason to it very much. And for anybody who thought I got Carmichael as a last name because that was the last name of Susie and her family in Rugrats? Well, you happen to be absolutely right. That is precisely why I picked that name.

Craig Hoyle: Craig got his first name from one of my old friends at college. He's a fairly hefty fellow but not massively tall like Craig (he's still my height, so... 6'3"), so I figured it'd be a fitting name to give my giant. Hoyle, I'm really not sure where I got the name from. I think I really just liked the sound of it, how well it meshed with his first name, and because I had "O'Doyle rules!" stuck in my head and didn't want to resort to using that last name.

So, uh, yeah! Just like everybody else, my methods for name selection are erratic at best. I just go with what feels right. I guess I've just always been decent at naming things as long as they aren't my own children (Moon Unit Rooks. Totally stealing it from Frank Zappa).
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The Fiorious One
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Finally, a chance to blather about how I came up with the name's of my characters! :D

As a general rule of thumb, I tend pick names which I think both suit the character and I like the look of, although in some cases there are other reason why I picked them.

Marty J. Lovett: I mainly just liked the sound of the name, although at first I was going to call him Marty Feldman until I realised that there was already a reasonably famous comedian who went by that name. The middle name I added simply for kicks. :P

Joshua Krakowski: Can't remember why I chose Joshua as his first name, but I do vaguely remember that Krakowski was the surname of a character from some half-baked idea I came up with which I can't even remember.

Maxwell Lombardi: Gonna be honest, I chose that name because I thought it sounded cool at the time. Although in hindsight, I might of changed his name to Maxwell Blake if I was given the chance and get rid of the pointless "partially Italian heritage" part of his backstory. Along with those stupid red highlights...

Vera Osborne: Not much to say about Vera apart from the fact that I chose her surname specifically because I knew no other character in SOTF had Osborne as their surname.

Not very interesting stories, I know, but whilst i'm here I may as well give reasons for my character concept's names. Which, as it happens, are somewhat more interesting.

Brian Zhdanovich: Believe it or not, but Brian is named after the Arctic Monkey's song Brianstorm, which I guess is kind of his theme song in a way. As for Zhdanovich, I took the surname from one of the many redshirts under my command in X-Com.

Ruby Forrester: Like with Brian, Ruby is named after the Kaiser Chief's song, which also kind of serves as her theme song. Interestingly enough, her surname is named after the main character from the 1950's War of the Worlds movie.

Jenna Rhodes: Funny story behind this one. I VERY nearly called her Alicia Rhodes, until I did a quick googlesearch and realised that Alicia Rhodes is an English pornstar (Don't worry, its a SFW wikipedia link). Woops. So, after learning of this, I quickly changed her first name to Jenna at the last second.

Another interesting bit of trivia: Originally, Ruby Forrester was originally going to be Jenna's name. I changed it at a later point because I decided that it didn't suit Jenna's character, not to mention the fact that Jenna wasn't the least bit Scottish.

And, that's all I've got to say really about my mainSOTF characters. As for my mini characters... Hmm, maybe it might be a cool idea to start a similar thread on the mini site as well.
V5 Characters

Brian Zhdanovich - Homestead
Ruby Forrester - Shopping Mall
Jenna Rhodes - Hotel

Deceased V4 Characters
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Stuff Happened!
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I picked: Allusions to other works (characters or places from books, movies, songs, etc.), Names with a certain meaning, and Whatever comes off the top of your head. Although I should have put in other because I also choose names I like the sound of, and have them make sense (heritage and the like).

Sterling Odair (from TV): His last name is a reference to The Hunger Games series (well, a lot of his profile is actually) which I'm not sure if I regret or not. His first name, Sterling, is just a name I like (my friend's brother's name is also Sterling, but I forgot until I was done with the profile).

Madelyn Conner (from TV): Just another name I liked. Originally she was Madison Conner, but there was another character with the name so I had to change that.

Vienna Gogh (from Virtual): I like the name Vienna, and is also the name of a musician I like (Vienna Teng). Gogh was pulled out of my ass (what is was doing there I have no idea).

Leo Raclaw (from Virtual): I like the name. That's it.

My V5 concepts are just names I like.
Lars Nylund "Shit, I was here for something."
Shopping -> Shooting
Edith West "Who the hell is editing my posts?"
Caleb Matthews "Don't worry, Bro. We're still cool."


A journey of a thousand miles ends with one,
"Fuck this, lets play video games."


I will always welcome constructive criticism through PMs.
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party wurmple never sleeps. only dances.
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I pretty much always choose first names that I really like, or something. Last names, I have real trouble thinking up, so I normally think of something that sounds cool... so yeah.

Glen Bole (TV): I like the name Glen, more than Glenn, which is kinda odd, but oh well. No idea where his last name came from.

Brennan O'Brian (TV): Same deal, I like the name Brennan. Plus it's Irish, so it fits never mind the fact it's pretty much used solely as a surname in Ireland. O'Brian because Irish.

Roy Benson (Virtua): First name comes from Roy off of Fire Emblem. Yeeah. Benson because I thought it fits well with Roy.

Stefan Syracuse: Another name stolen from Fire Emblem, go me. Syracuse because I thought it was a pretty snazzy last name, and I think I was reading the TV tropes page for Alliterative Names at the time.

Chase Rodriguez: One of the few characters I could easily think of a last name for. I like Chase, I like Rodriguez. Simple as that.

Owen, Amy (Main), Amelia (Virtua) and Josh (Arena) are all based of off actual people so yeah.
Edited by Pippin, Aug 31 2011, 07:09 PM.


"bryony and alba would definitely join the terrorists quote me on this put this quote in signatures put it in history books" - Cicada Days, 2017
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The Bearded One
One of the Larpaajilta
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I checked "Real Names" and "Other".
The reason is because I (so far) am basing the characters I create on real people I've known, usually from a couple of decades ago.

Robert "Bobby" Goldman (TV) is a variation on my own great-grandfather's name.
Alicia White (TV) is the actual name of a fellow student that I knew at university.
Leonard "Lenny" Nast (v5) is a variation of a cypher of a person I knew at university whose real name was the same as a famous film & tv actor.
Jeanine McLaughlin (v5) is the combination of the 1st name of one friend with the last name of another friend, both of whom I knew at university.
Warren Davies (Virtua) is a variation on the name of a friend from university.

I should mention - in case there is any confusion - that the personalities of these characters are not intended to be identical to the persons the names were based on.

v5 concepts:
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Mr. Danya
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Lucy Ashmore ~ Off the top of my head, plain 'n' simple
Janet Claymont ~ ""
Alice Boucher ~ MIGHT have picked Boucher because it means butcher. Probably did, if memory serves.
Amber Whimsy ~ The name came first but she's definitly a whimsy girl of sorts. At least until she was shot and crying. Not so whimsy then.

And the new ones -

Ryan Banks ~ Off my head!
Alex King ~ Off my head!
Rachel Penn ~ Named after a banker I met. It's a fun surname!
Edited by Slam, Aug 31 2011, 04:28 PM.
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The Killable One
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I use pixie dust and magic.

Actually, I play the IMDB game. I start at a random movie and all the names come from obscure/actors and characters. The first and last name pairings are completely random, and I don't think I've ever known anything about the movies they came from.
Version 4 Character:
Simon Fletcher (B104): Dead at The Sawmill

Version 5 Character:
Casey Malkovich (G037): Dead at The Farmhouse

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Don't cast aspersions on my asparagus.
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Mixture. Augustus MacDougal, I named in part after the professor from RDR (no regrets). Augustus was because "meh whatever". The rest, a combination of looking up appropriate names and random name generators.
V7 peeps:
Nick Ogilvie
Ashlynn Martinek
Bill Winlock
Camille Bellegarde

V6 peeps:
Kiziah Saraki
Bradley Floyd
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i'm not upset
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Sally from v4, Jeanette from TV, Kendra Gregory and Michael Sechooler from Program, Taryn Gregory from Evo and the future Michelle Weschler in v5- All named after people I know because they were based on people I know. I'm lazy.

Ethan Kent v4: Based on my real friend, Ethan Stark. We have a Stark on the board though and I didn't want a confusing mess so I named him Kent after Clark Kent because he gets the whole "Tony Stark" thing a lot in real life and I thought it'd be funny to just give him a different super hero last name.

Isabel Guerra v4- What my mother wanted to name me but my dad's pretty stupid and I got named Victoria instead. Guerra is my mother's maiden name and a pretty common Hispanic name.

Nick LeMonde v4 - Off the top of my head. His real life counterpart is named Drew LaFountaine so I wanted something short for the first name and something French for the last. LeMonde I thought was funny because it just means "The world" in French and due to the nature of the game, he had to die, so it would be "the end of the world." Har har har, I'm hilarious.

Amaranta "Mara" Montalvo v5: The real life Amaranta is named "Rosa" but because we had a pretty prominent Rosa in v4 I thought I should change it. Amaranta is a character from the book 100 Years of Solitude which is the real Amaranta's favorite book and it's a unique name so I went with it. Montalvo was her mother's maiden name.

Paris Arden: Uh, real Paris is named Sasha so I wanted another feminine name and I rather dislike Paris from the Illiad and rather dislike Sasha so I thought it was a good fit. Arden after the Ardens forest in France because he's part French.

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i love him, i love him, i love him, i love him
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Alrighty, let's see...I checked the second-to-last one.

Paige and Jacob from v4 and my Mini characters (except for Virtua) are all named after people I know.

Brendan Wallace is a two part thing - Brendan is usually what I name my guy when I play Pokemon, and Wallace was just a random last name I chose that sounded Australian.

Clio Gabriella was just two random Italian names I found on a baby name website, and Aston Bennett was named after oh wait I didn't name her never mind.

As for my v5 concepts, several stories. Jasper Rourke was originally named after someone I know, but I changed the last name.

Tessa Blackridge was a bit random - I got the first name from a baby name website, and I made the last name up.

Alina Rivette was a two-parter as well - Alina comes from a contestant from Survivor: Nicaragua, and Rivette comes from a French girl who went to my school a few years ago.

Jacqueline "Cameo" Conroy: first, choose a first name from someone you know; second, look up obscenely common surnames on the American census list; last but not least, find the most ridiculous goth name you can think of.

Ramona I got from a contestant from the original Survivor Borneo. Her first name that is. Second name I got from the name game song and just made it a last name.
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I can't sing but I wrote you a song

Wrong notes but the melody's so clear

When I'm lost, I'm still close to gold

cause I found my treasure in you
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Null sheen.
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I make it up as I go along. Don't tell anyone.
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