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Urname Goeshere

Brasse -- 2007-04-03 18:15:04

I like to roleplay, but I don't care if other people do. What I do care about is dumbass names. They have always bothered me, so today I am going to make a comic about them.

Nothing makes my lip curl like walking through a beautifully immersive world, only to have Skratchin McCrotch run up and say, "Would you like to group?" Actually, it's generally more along the lines of "grp me", accompanied by jumping up and down for no apparent reason, and shortly after, a brief farewell, such as "f u to".

No, I will not group with you, as you have clearly pasted a giant label over your head that declares, "I celebrate being a complete idiot, and my identity in this world means nothing to me." In fact, I will not heal you, give you directions, the time of day, a rez, trade with or buy from you. I am perfectly aware that this works both ways, by the way.

When I entered my first MMOG, a decade ago, I took great pains to choose names for my characters that I'd be proud of. I am always surprised when others do not.

Here is a quick test to see if your name sucks or not:
- Picture your Elven, Dwarven, Hobbit or Human parents. Would they have chosen this name for you? Nopers, miss Healuraz, not a chance in hell.
- Would someone writing the next great fantasy novel choose this name for you? Shut up, Hawtmomma, they would NOT.
- Would you be proud to go to your family reunion and meet your grandparents after five years apart, with your game name on your name tag? I don't think so, Hungsewlow.
- Will people be able to immediately tell that you are feebly impersonating someone famous? No number of extra letters are going to make people think you are the real Aragorn, mister Arragrorn.

Now, the player named "Toasteroven" can say there's not a damn thing I can do about it, and they are right. I generally only report the crude and lewd names, because I know the GMs are busy, and because more and more MMOGs allow the stupid names as a matter of course.

"Bobbysmom" will holler that I have no right to cramp his... err her? playstyle with my complaints, and that is true. I do not complain out loud, I merely choose not to interact with them.

There is no law in real life about personal hygiene, but I tend to avoid people who do not bathe or brush their teeth. I wouldn't want to cramp their playstyle by asking them to do something about the horrendous smell, but I do NOT have to like it.

Interestingly enough, for those who like to have utterly unusable names with a multitude of vowels, Turbine has done something to make it remotely possible for people to remember how to spell your monikers, by automatically filtering out more than 2 vowels in a row. Enter a name like "Aaeuilleian" and the name filter tells you it is gibberish. The same goes for more than two consonants in a row.

They are trying to stop names like Leeegoolas, apparently, but it has the side effect of disallowing annoying random vowel names as well, which is good... but wait! Sometimes you need three vowels to make perfectly valid Elven-sounding names. The rule is particularly problematic, as "y" is always counted as a vowel in Turbine's filter. A name like "Keeneye" is returned as gibberish, as is a perfectly nice name like "Zoue" (a genuine name lamenting her lot from the forums).

With a limit of two consonants, perfectly good names like Chromm and Thrup and Strum are out too. The latter is the name of a guildmate from EQII; should he come to LOTRO, he will not be able to use his favorite Minstrel name.

These steps have NOT stopped people from making names derivative of the LOTRO characters. I have seen many mangled versions of Arwen, Gimli, Aragorn and Legolas running around since March 30th. Let's drop that feeble wall, shall we please? People are just going around it anyway.

On the other hand, Turbine (like most MMOG companies these days) will allow the idiots to have their way:

"Just a reminder that we do not forbid character names that do not strictly fit within a Middle-Earth or fantasy setting. We will only change names that specifically violate the guidelines published in our Naming Policy, which can be referenced at http://turbine.fuzeqna.com/lotro.sup....asp?kbid=1279

Specifically, the naming policy does not include ANY mention of "names not suggestive of Lord of the Rings or fantasy environments" as being forbidden. We will, in fact, allow Toaster... and Soda... and DoodIRawk. We will not, on the other hand, allow BlackAndDecker, Pepsi, or DoodUSuck.

Please review the Naming Policy, and make sure that the name in question actually violates this policy before reporting it. We welcome reports on names that violate the Naming Policy, but repeated frivolous name reports will be considered abuse of the report feature, and could result in action against the reporter themselves.

Thank you for your cooperation.
__________________
Lorien "Ramen" Carney
Community Relations Specialist
The Lord of the Rings Online


The two policies seem completely counter to one another in terms of what they are trying to accomplish, but I have an /ignore filter, and wide open expanses to explore.

By the way, in case you think that I am an elitist (well, ok, I am), some of my closest friends have bad names. I still like them.

I remember a past guildmate in EQ, great fellow, with the poorly advised moniker "Stoolnoggin" (think about it); fortunately the GMs got to it before it caused an argument between us, hehe.

My friend Furball... not a bad name, really, if one is a cat or dog. Not a good, or even passable Elven name, but there he is. He's had that name for a few years and he likes it. I don't.

My partner Alluvian... he had used the name in MUDs many years before Asheron's Call was made, and had no way to predict that they'd name one of their races "Alluvian". He stubbornly holds on to the name now regardless. Rangers are like that.

I am sure other names have been officially trademarked long after some hapless soul started using them to game with, and I guess they are inevitably changed.

By the way, all of the names in the second panel are REAL character names in LOTRO, collected in about ten minutes last night.

Go ahead, tell me what a crappy name Brasse is. Spare no detail!

;-)#
Brasse

ps. I have to admit that while I've been meaning to do this comic idea for a while, the final impetus came when Alluvian made a post on our forums about vowel-laden names. I lifted the entire first text bubble of this comic directly from his post. He can sue me for royalties later. =P
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