So you made this awesome world and this awesome adventure.
Everything’s in place and it’s time for character generation.
The players roll up these cool characters and equip them for all it’s worth.
“Uuuööööh….I dunno, I think my character will be Bob the Farter”
You guys recognise this?
Now, Bob the Farter might be a fun name (or not), but I think it’s also a feel-changer and a potential setting killer.
Why? Depending on the feel and scope of your new campaign, these random “couldn’t think of anything better”-names tend to draw focus from the setting ambience. Imagine Bob in your Ravenloft game. Cool? No. Would Aragorn be as cool if his name was Bwian? Or Woody Funnywalk? No.
As a player, I have a hard time with immersion in the game when my fellow PCs in the dark dungeon have names like Whanko or Hornian.
As a GM, I’ve always been tolerant with goofy names, not wanting to override my players’ creativity, but lately I’ve been thinking of veto-ing those names I deem out of campaign context. At the same time I don’t want to curb any enthusiasm by being some Ministry of Silly Names.
What’s your thoughts on this? How do you handle your player’s silly name choices?
Or should I maybe embrace it and make a d100 silly name generator table?
PS. Yes, all those silly name examples have been used in my play group at some point. More frequent in our teens, but I have 2 players that NEVER EVER have chosen anything else than these types of names. DS