Greedy Goblin

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Naming rule discussion

It seems many people lack imagination when naming their characters.

The short question for today: Shall we allow boring (not offensive, l33t, cool, fun) words as names. Some examples: hammer, toolbox, mouse, cat, treetop, cloud, flyer, walker, swimmer, jumping.

I mean they are obviously not lolkid names, however might show lack of intelligence or care while making the character. What do you think?

The question comes from the fact that several people with such names want to get invite, some known to be good. The constant RBGs and especially the nasty Preform AV enabler massacres got us some new people and lot of others who did not get inv, mostly for naming reasons. Of course icriturass or pwnzorlol will never be invited. But I'm not so sure about "sanctuary".


spinksville said...

Yeah, I'd let that go. A lot of people I'm sure just can't think of names and pick whatever they're looking at when the screen comes up (eg. shelf, pencil, tree, etc). It's not like deathknightlol and you're not on a RP server.

Anonymous said...

I vote yes. Names should disqualify only when they show idiocy and immaturity. fine.

Happy Forum said...

You should allow it. A name like Treetop kind of sounds like a druid name, for example. Also, they are completely harmless and it's not that difficult to draw a line. There's clearly a difference between something silly like "Spoon" and "arthasdklol". Lastly, while "arthasdklol" probably won't obey chat rules, there's nothing inherent in the name "swimmer" that tells you they will disobey - and if they do, you can always kick them. :)

Squishalot said...

I think you answered the question for yourself when you let "Energybomb" into the guild. What we think doesn't matter at all.

Alkarasu said...

Can't see why not. After all, that was pretty common medieval practice to name people with common words, that was somehow connected to what they were perceived by other people. And surnames quite naturally evolved from people professions and other occupations. So while it may mean lack of imagination, at the same time it may mean keeping a tradition (WoW setting is quite medieval at times).

Dzonatan said...

That name selection have finally cought up to you. Here's a little something that never crossed your mind: The very lol names are something that might be viewed as a moron tag right? How about using the "Wolf in sheep fur" approach? Nothing breaks better on a narrow mind than a clever sabotage where one expects an easy win but gets mutilated because of his pre-mature judgement.

Anonymous said...

what does a name change cost ?

how much do they value a membership in your guild?

Armond said...

Now, it's 1 AM, so I may not be thinking as clearly as perhaps I should, but here are my thoughts on the matter:

If one can prove him/herself to be a good player and capable of fitting the asocial atmosphere of the guild, should a name matter?

Indeed, if a character is sufficiently asocial, pulls his weight in raids (whatever his role), is it an issue if he occasionally loans free stuff to other guild members, uses an emoticon, or talks about irl in /g?

Everyone in the guild is there for an overarching purpose: to support each other in an asocial way so that the entire guild can progress through various raids and RBGs. The more a person contributes to that goal, the better they are for the guild as a whole. How much are you willing to bend the rules based on a person's contributions? How much should the rules be bent based on a person's contributions? Perhaps most importantly, how much do one's contributions make up for bending the rules?

chewy said...

If someone applied with the name "Beermug" would you assume he was an idiot or a drinker ?

Ein Stein - A beer mug

I appreciate that there's a difference between being given a name and choosing one but something as innocuous as "Spoon" is unlikely to be indicative of the owners ability to play Wow.

Ian Wilkinson said...

I think that the names should be allowed into your guild. The names you mention are harmless enough.

Leeho said...

Well, when i named my rogue as Weasel, i surely didn't fought that it shows he alack of imagination. Sense of humor varies a lot between people. If you find something boring, it's just your opinion. You can't prove something really is boring, or at least you can't prove it just by stating that it's boring to you.

Anonymous said...

Yes, but be sure to mention that they can just hit 'random' under the name button in the future.

Anonymous said...

I think the basic question is wether you want people in your Guild that want to join because of roflstomping with huge premades in PUG Battlegrounds in the first place.

As other commentors have said, you've never been too particular with names before so I'd stick with the real question.

Anonymous said...

why do you forbid any name ?
I mean it is there liberty to choose any stupid name anyone want ....
If he respect the rules why can't he choose any name?
I mean it's purely arbitrary to tell anyone that his name is stupid lol kids...
for them it's cool and finally who cares ?
maybe oneday they find that there name isn't as cool as they though...
I think that when you make a naming rule, you prevent people to choose freely what they want


Roger said...

For me it really comes down to what I would have to type in when talking to that person. /g spoon is not a problem for me. /g rofldots would mean that I would have to actually use that kiddiespeak myself. And I would be forced to see that kiddiespeak in everything that person wrote in /g or /casual. The same goes for "funny" names and a few others in the list of disallowed names. Boring names doesn't bother me, at all.

Anonymous said...

There are dozens of examples of characters in fantasy literature (i.e., the same cloth that WoW is cut from) who are primarily known by a nickname. Nicknames often are actual words... it's just how nicknames work.

Stalker (as Aragorn was known for the first book) from the Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien

Croaker, Lady, Goblin, and many others from the Black Company series by Glen Cook

The Gunslinger from the Dark Tower series by Stephen King

And so on.

Far from showing a lack of imagination, names like these can add a lot of depth, be memorable, etc.

It should be a no-brainer to not get upset over names that also happen to be words.

That being said: single words work best. Once you start stringing more than word together, you end up with inanities like "Istaburface", "Ugotpwned", and "Gankedurass".

Ermak said...

If the paladin wants to be called Tincan let it be. His/her healing/tanking/dps is above the retarded. If not - then it's just another name in the roster that don't hurt my eyes.

Anonymous said...

Naming rules are retarded as a whole
even on rp servers. Its madeup rules. You want to rp? So how do you know my name? Surely not by looking at my nametag right? That would be hardly rp.

It's common as hardcore pvp players to take offensive names to humiliate/anger the opponent more as rage leads to even worse gameplay

It makes sense to ignore legolas&co as it indicated the mindset but i would make exeptions for exceptional players

Anonymous said...

This is wowheads list of npc's in the game. Let's check out some names in the first 20:
Captain Cookie

A name like "The Hammer" or "Toolbox" could easily be the name of a boss in a future gnomeregan raid.

To chewy: in what language does Ein Stein mean 'a beer mug'? It translates literally to 'a stone' from german to english.

Anonymous said...

I think its fine.
Often times I find the names I want are frequently already taken on a server.
So it does sometimes just come down to whateve comes to mind, Swimmer, Pencil etc.

Guessing new names that are often taken gets dull pretty quick when there is a game to play.

Bottom line, judging a book by its cover is guessing.
Better to give people enough rope to either hang themself or prove their worth.

energybomb said...


I am (was actually, but that is a different matter) energybomb.

You might want to look at this article:

especially the name part. Let me give you the excerpt I mention

"Often, the hardest part of creating a character is selecting a good name. But with gnomes, it’s easy! Gnome parents name their children at birth, and the gnome takes on a family name that reflects the accomplishments of an ancestor. At adulthood, however, the gnome’s surname is changed to reflect his own accomplishments. Most gnomish names are compounds of two words. Some examples of gnome names:
Springspindle Fizzlegear
Gelbin Mekkatorque
Tally Berryfizz
Fizzlebang Booms
Wizzle Brassbolts"

Energybomb is a 100% rp name.

Anonymous said...

Keep it on a case-by-case basis. Using objects, professions and other such things as a name is very common in the real world - a lot of names can be traced to some form of it.
Then again, sometimes it's just plain stupid.

Kimmo said...

Arthasloldk, yes, there is a very strong correlation between the name, immaturity, and sucking.

Sanctuary, potato, energybomb: I never noticed such a thing. Even if correlation existed, it's quite insignificant. More often than not they are just bad (or good, like Anonymous above me points out) at thinking names and in a non-RP realm the name is largely a non-issue.

Think of it this way: Bad players are quite easily replaced while banning such names would limit your pool of potentially great players by a lot.

Anonymous said...

Why not? Most players do not RP, they do not see themselves as their characters. A name like "Cup" may not show much creativity, but for that player the character is most likely the means to an end, a tool for succeeding in PvP, raids, etc.

There's no reason to suspect such a person would be a bad fit for your guild.

Now if the string of words, like "Imabigtrain," you might have a different situation on your hands.

PS: What if someone's name is a word you don't know? Would you kick them from the guild after discovering their name wasn't the product of the random name generator after all?

Espoire said...

Common words is my standard method of naming. Mine aren't as obvious, as I use a language other than the server's language. They can be interesting conversation starters, I've had a number of positive conversations spring up from someone asking me "oh, do you know French too?"

Anonymous said...

Ermak is the name of a Mortal Kombat character.

Like everyone said, lolspeak/kiddiespeak names should be a no go.

Names like Eatmypie as well. It's not a good name.

There are a few names in your guild that doesn't respect this, anyway.

chewy said...


I'll take your word for the translation because it really doesn't matter, stone, beer mug they're harmless and don't describe the owner.

Oblivions Pastor said...

From my perspective I couldn't disqualify a player purely on their name even If I thought it was stupid but I understand the principal behind the name filtering is to efficiently root out idiots. Why not say all names are ok but shift the burden of proof to if you find the name idiotic then that person must prove that they would be a valuable member of the team before they can join, if its not idiotic carry on as normal.

I think the final measure should always be their behaviour, the things they do, or don't do. After all A name is just some way to reduce confusion in communication. if you aren't going to confuse Spoon with Pencil with Duck then its serving its purpose.

Lighstagazi said...

I would go with a psuedonymn style split. Most nouns and unconjugacted verbs would be fine. Jump, Mouse, Sanctuary, Wind would be fine. Jumping, Seek, Swimmer would be bad.

This makes sense to me, but also seems to align with what I have observed about unusual names in literature, where believability and empathy with a name (or lack thereof) can kill a book.

I'd also take into account character race somewhat. Maybe it's not that big of a difference on Alliance side, but for Horde, both Trolley and Tauren are more acceptable for Treetop or Jumper than on an Orc or Undead. Horde 'accents' are also designed to make the speaker seem almost unfamiliar with the language all together, at least in my regions language (NA English).

In essence, if you cannot imagine a character in the game saying the name without too much suspicion of being pranked, I would accept it. LOLspeak obviously doesn't need to pass this test because even the user can't accept that as a name, and we're already trying to suspend disbelief.

Anonymous said...

aside from the lolkid names, you may be reading too much into what a name says about a player. some players just don't care about their character's name or appearance. these are trivial details that have no impact on the game or their abilities. these players likely rushed thru character creation so they could just start playing the game.

Andru said...

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."

Anonymous said...

I agree with the majority in that such names are perfectly okay. In fact, I would go so far as to give the people that have a name that might be slightly awkward a go.

For example, my DK is called Fallennzall (Kor'Gall EU, pun on my then-main), which I believe is pretty close to being disallowed by your name rule (although it could be considered an RP name). Yet, I pull decent DPS, I interrupt, I can stay out of fire and I'm usually one of the last ones alive at the end of a fight (due to proper CD usage). meanwhile, I've had people in my guild with "proper" names who can't even stay out of the fire and kill themselves nearly every fight.

You can't really judge most players by their name, unless the name is REALLY noticably bad.

Lomez said...

I find it ironic that "arthasdklol" has become synonymous with "bad player," as that specific name is a great example of satire. It mocks the animosity expressed towards early Death Knights by superficially playing into the stereotype that all Death Knights are stupid, inexperienced children.

It seems unjust to dismiss someone based solely on his name. A name that seems stupid or unoriginal on the surface may actually hold more meaning than you realize.

Unknown said...

I think there is less in a name than you think. Bringing up the rose smelling just as sweet cliche isn't necessary, but it reinforces my point.

There are good players that come up with silly names to express themselves a bit at character creation time.

I doubt anyone would argue that BigRedKitty is a bad player even though his name is wimsical.

Roger said...

The main problem with naming rules is that most people don't really give the name they choose much consideration when creating the character, simply because they don't know if the character they are creating is going to last until levelcap. So they give the char a "funny" or "boring" name just to get into the game quickly. Especially after trying a few good names and get the ever so annoying "name not available" message.

Naming rules are not a problem if you are aware of them when creating the character, but trying to impose them on maxlevel characters is problematic, in my opinion.