For some players, “enter a name for your character” might as well read “insert the best joke you can within the character limit.” As a younger soul, this bothered me, because I’m pretty sure no one in Tyria would name their children “Valkilmer Sucks” or “Chowder Head,” but I would still have to see that in Guild Wars. I wanted strict naming enforcement, darn it!
Now that I’m older, I think younger me is a well-intentioned nincompoop. I have characters with names who do not adhere to strict naming conventions, and while those characters each have elaborate lore explanations for why they’ve got odd names, it doesn’t change the fact I would need to rename at least a couple of my Final Fantasy XIV characters. And that’s ignoring that some of my favorite names on that game include characters like “Carfullof Whiteboys,” “Viewing Catscene,” and my personal favorite, “Combyo Beard.”
Of course, some companies don’t care too much about providing name standards in the first place, so while “Samlikesham” doesn’t look like a traditional Night Elf name I can’t really say it isn’t. What do you think, readers? Should MMOs have enforced naming standards?
Has this ever happened to you? You decide to roll (or reroll) a new character in an MMORPG, and after you get done choosing just the right hair coif and length of beard stubble, you find your mind freezing at what to call this perfect creation. Parents generally get nine months to come up with a name for their baby, but you have just minutes before you start feeling foolish.
Even worse is when you have a name — but it’s taken. After sending out a string of strongly worded curses at the player (probably a nine-year-old kid who thinks as you do), you are forced to come up with a replacement. Because heaven forbid that a virtual world have two characters with the same name. That’s why we have so much conflict here on earth, with all of the Jens and Ryans romping around.
Fortunately for you, I am here to help. With a decade and a half of MMO gaming experience behind me and a zombie uprising’s worth of alts, I have a few tips to share on how to name your next character. If you act today and get a new character name out, I’ll even throw in a vowel, free of charge!
Are you ready for Blade & Soul‘s launch on January 19th? Are you really ready? I mean, you might have played a lot of the game’s beta, but there’s more stuff coming to the game in the days leading up to launch. There’s even a guide to everything players can expect, starting with the full list of launch servers available in both North America and Europe. Plan ahead and coordinate with your friends before you start playing.
Name reservation for certain founder packs will open up on January 11th, with the game allowing players to log in and create characters while not being available for play. There will also be more skin tone, hairstyle, and hair color options available to provide a wider breadth of customization for everyone. Head start begins at 1 p.m. EST (10 a.m. PST) on January 15th, so be sure to check the guide and be ready if you’re hotly anticipating the launch.
With a decade of popularity and lots of people playing, World of Warcraft does not have a surfeit of names available for players. As a result, the game is reclaiming names from characters that haven’t logged in since December 7th of 2010 when patch 6.2 goes live. Fortunately, if you have a character who may be at risk, simply logging in sometime today will ensure that you retain the name for the future.
Moving forward, names will be freed up in a similar fashion with the launch of each new expansion, with lead time to make sure that you can maintain the names most important to you. If you’re more interested in player competition than player names, there’s also a glance at the tournament road to this year’s BlizzCon available to examine.