Fun Naming

For anyone familiar with the Mother 3 OST, you probably already had an idea what this thread's gonna be about. For everyone else: let's talk about what we name our characters!

I'll start out by saying that I am almost _pathologically_ boring and will exhaust every avenue possible to make sure I give my character their canonical name. Already filled in? Perfect! If it's not filled in, I'll usually try and hit "OK" with the field empty just to see if this forces the default name to populate. Failing that, it's time to hit the web and research it. Did you know the canonical name of the protagonist in _Crusader of Centy_ is "Corona." Unfortunate! Such are the lengths I will go to in order to avoid flexing my atrophied creativity muscles.

So, one might reasonably ask why I would start a thread about a practice I actively try to avoid. I can't really answer that (well, tbh, the real answer is that the "Fun Naming" track was stuck in my head and, instead of posting it in the [menu music thread](, I decided to create this thread), but sometimes one absolutely _must_ commit to personalizing the game's Playbill a bit.

In these instances, my protagonist is always Leona (or maybe Leon if a male gender is enforced), and I like to imagine that it's canonically the same person tragically facing several multiverses' worth adventures and adversity. This name descends directly from an obsession (that I most definitely cannot explain) with Leon Powalski, the chameleonic member of Star Wolf introduced in _Star Fox 64_. The lineage proceeded directly from that to my Ultima Online character "Leon the Great" (a reference to his quote "Annoying bird! I am the Great Leon!"), and then, with an 'a' appended, to the rest of my personalized protagonist canon.

If I need to come up with multiple names, I like to commit to some kind of theme. For example, for my crew in _Disgaea: Afternoon of Darkness_, I used stone/gemstone names (except for the samurai, they were all flowers🌸). Incidentally, I feel like I would be way better at this nowadays, now that I've read (most of) _Houseki no Kuni_.

Oh, and I rarely use my own name (unless it's just to name a save file or something)...feels weird when the game's addressing me directly! (except for certain fourth wall breakers iykyk etc etc)

I have never even once used my own name in a videogame. If I wanted to be me, I‘d just take a walk or whatever! I also usually don’t choose my own gender when I have the choice, which maybe says something else about me.

I usually name my character in open world games xeno. I can't remember why I started doing it but it's now just a habit, but I also only tend to name my character in open world games where the protagonist doesn't have a name.

In narrative games, I usually just use the Canon names now, though I've also started naming my characters after my son (human) when we play together, though he sometimes wants me to name then Daddy, which I will never do. But it is a sweet gesture that I appreciate.

My go-to name to name characters in games is “Jam.” It works across gender lines, genres, time periods, archetypes, whatever. I like it for anybody anywhere anytime. I often try to come up with other names, but if I‘m getting stuck I just default to “Jam.” (I stole this name/ idea from a dear friend, so every time I use it, it’s my way of honoring him).

One time a funny thing happened with it. I was playing For The Frog The Bell Tolls with the player character named Jam and there is a funny part in that game where you encounter a thief and he does all kinds of things to mess with you. He kept calling himself "Jam," which I saw as the game being all meta and clever. He's stealing my identity! He's stealing my name in addition to my stuff!

Nope, turns out that character is just named Jam. Our same name was pure coincidence, though that made the playthrough even more cool in its own way, like I was unknowingly vibing with parts of the game before I even played it.

I‘m also boring, and almost always go research the canonical name, which made Persona 5 difficult because Joker is canonically named both Akira Kurusu and Ren Amamiya. I ultimately thought that Akira was too closely associated with the anime and thought Ren was more of a blank slate and I’m glad I made that choice, since that‘s what he’s called in Persona 5 Dancing in the Starlight, which is in my 2nd favorite Persona 5 game.

As for more "Fun Naming", I'm bad at naming things (as you can probably tell by my forum name) so sometimes I'll either exaggerate some characteristic (name Dragon Quest IV mc "Mel" because her hair kinda looked like Mel B) or take the last funny word I hear while listening to a podcast or something.

What's in a name?

Well one time I had fun creating a character in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2, maxing out all the sliders to make the hugest and stupidest looking guy I could make. I named him HILL, and for some reason, that made me laugh as hard as anything ever has. So whenever I’m in the mood for stupid (often), I name characters HILL.

In the SMT games, which allow you to input first and last names (rare) I have a tradition of going with Canadian city first name and common American Joe last name. Examples:

Halifax Jones
Regina Brown
Winnipeg Jackson

My non-stupid default is Jimmy, because that name has always kind of made me laugh. Apologies to all Jimmies.

These days I always name Poopy-ZX. It must be good since people keep telling me what a fine name I have! For games that don‘t allow Poop, I use Poots. For games that don’t allow Poo, I delete them. For multi character games I only name the first character Poopy-ZX and keep the rest default cuz it'd be super confusing if I name them all Poopy-ZX.

I almost always go with frog (or かえる if the game requires Japanese characters) for more casual games, it helps that my friends have been calling me frog since I was 14, so it‘s familiar but it feels distant enough that it isn’t as jarring as my irl name.

If I‘m trying to take an RPG with an undefined protagonist seriously, I’ll come up with a character to roleplay as beforehand, pretty much just made-up on the spot, which has resulted in some fun moments. The best example is in Elden Ring, I named my character Inaba and chose the Reedlander class, and then late into the game I stumbled upon the White Reed set, who's flavor text reads:


Armor of the White Reeds, fashioned from banded iron plates. Worn by the Inaba, head disciples of the great swordsman Okina.

The Inaba traveled in pursuit of not only the master who abandoned them, but also proper deaths, won honorably through hard-fought combat. To be a White Reed is to seek death; fitting for the Inaba, who desired nothing more than to die by the sword.

So, of course, I had to use that armor set for the rest of the game! And it lead to me really feeling attached to my character.

For most games I‘ll opt for the canonical name if I can find it except for the Persona games. I explained in the “explain your handle” thread that I’d used Mumbo LeFish / Le Fishy on my first play of Persona 3 without really thinking about finding the canonical name, and I used it again for P4 and P5.

Off the top of my head the only games that I've played that have let me customise a full party of blank slates has been the Etrian Odyssey ones, and as far as I'm concerned, anything goes and I'll swing with whatever their portrait tells me. From what I recall I've had Quentim, Jimbill, and Deathby.

I go with canon names, but in games that don't have them or I am not taking that seriously I really like the name “BIG X” where X is any letter (even X!) I Just pick one at random and imagine what it could stand for.

If I‘m playing something with a high fantasy or some other European-ish setting, I usually reach for the Irish version of my middle name. Sometimes I can even get away with including the acute accent. I also sometimes use the name I was gonna take for myself when I transitioned, before deciding that I should just keep my given one. If there’s a canon name though I usually pick that, it depends on whether I see the character as my own or preconceived.

Then there are times when I just phone it in


Y‘all, I came ready for this one. I keep a running list of names to use because too often I’ve found myself frozen in front of the name select screen. I like a name that gives me a little chuckle in the moment and then a big chuckle when I replay a game years later and see the name I used last time. Here's a selection, feel free to use them in your own adventures:


The only time in my adult life I've ever named a JRPG character differently from their canonical name (aside from Pokémon of course) was Persona 5. I named him Porsty Portella and it always made me laugh every single time it was on screen


some thoughts:

It‘s self sacriledge to ever name Zelda’s main character “Link”.

I had a theming for the ps2 Persona games.

  • - p3 protag was Howl Castle
  • - p4 protag was Kell Cipher
  • - I don't fully remember my p5 protag, but I think it was Aston Martini... actually I checked it's Aston Mardini, I guess martini was too crass. This guy got this name because he's a lot fancier looking than the last protags.
  • Monster Hunter is really fun for themed names as you get to name the cats too.

  • - My world character is Jam with the cat PB.
  • - In MH4U I named my cats Spithradat(es (didnt fit)) and Agamemnon as I was learning classics at the time.
  • I've done it before but I really don't like giving pokemon nicknames.

    @“beets”#p108550 Oh man that reminds me. In college, my roommates and I bought Pokemon Diamond and Pearl, and there was a parrot pokemon. The game let you record its vocal cry, so we named him Salty Tom, and my one friend recorded himself saying “Salty Tom” in this horrible screechy parrot voice. Well that was a fun time for us, let me tell you.

    @“kyleprocrastinations”#p108494 now Tugtat I can get into!!


    I gave my team names in Pokémon X a drink theme:


    (Moose as in "mousse.")

    When I played dragon warrior III on gbc they started me with a party of 3 dudes and a girl, so I made them seinfeld