Naming your game

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nefferinthia
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Naming your game

#1 Post by nefferinthia » Sat Apr 23, 2011 2:40 pm

Hey there everyone~ My first topic in a long while is about a dilemma I'm sure many of you have faced. You have a super-amazing awesome game that you want to make known to the world but.. wait.. it needs to have a name. So. How do you go about thinking of a name? Do you pick the obvious? Does it just come to you? Or do you spend hours brainstorming?

Thanks for taking the time to answer my question n___n

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Re: Naming your game

#2 Post by choklitchan » Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:29 pm

I like making a list of everything related to my game; be it an idea, a word, an event, whatever happens to pop into my head. Of that huge list, I pick what sounds interesting, and then focus on tweaking those.
In my newest game, I had the phrase "Two people get shrunk down to bug-size and must find a way back" in my concept paper. I liked the way "Shrunk" sounded, but it didn't sound quite right. Shrunk, Shrunked, Shrinked, Shrink... Eventually I got "Shrinkled", and loved it.
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Re: Naming your game

#3 Post by broken_angel » Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:41 pm

I usually do a lot of brainstorming to come up with a good name.

First, I think of the themes in my game. What's the central plot about? Setting? Time period? Genre? Do any characters have special traits that are important? What about the look and feel of the game - is there anything special or unique about it?

Then I think of words or phrases that sum up the above and test them out by saying them out loud and figuring out what they make me think of. I also generally bring a friend into the process and bounce ideas back and forth with them. Sometimes, I'll even doodle a mock title screen for a particularly promising-sounding title and see if it fits. From there, I just do a process of trial and error to find the one I think sounds best.

For me, the process usually takes a couple hours to come up with one I think I like...then I go to bed thinking about it, dream about different names, and wake up with the title I want. xD

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Re: Naming your game

#4 Post by Sapphi » Sat Apr 23, 2011 6:24 pm

I always google my ideas for names to make sure they aren't already being used for another game or series, or something else. That way people won't be confused and a search engine can find them easier. Of course, if you have a title that isn't very unique, you can always give it a subtitle or something to make it stand out.
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Re: Naming your game

#5 Post by Auro-Cyanide » Sat Apr 23, 2011 8:48 pm

I mostly just let it come to me. The only one I am not really happy with is 'For all the power'... it sounds too stiff. I wasn't getting anywhere with it by forcing it, so I will leave it until it is ready. It is not in a rush after all.

Most of the time I just think about the story, maybe look at stuff associated to it. For instance 'Collision Theory' is both based on the concept the story has of science vs humanities as well as being the theory that describes action and reaction. It suited the story well and sounds cool. It popped into my head and it fitted, so that is what the story is called.

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Re: Naming your game

#6 Post by LVUER » Sat Apr 23, 2011 9:30 pm

I think I'll just list some common concept used to make title... (since we're talking about title, I will talk all kind of title, not only VN/game, since I believe that when we're speaking about title, it's more or less the same with any other medium).

- The easiest is just use the protagonist name is the title. Ex: Naruto, Blue Submarine no.6 (name of the submarine), Doraemon. Kagetora, Superman, Batman, Flash, Captain America, etc etc...

- You could even further add a "subtitle" to the name. Ex: Jiguko Sensei Nube (Nube is the name, Jigoku Sensei means Teacher from Hell), Asuka Hybrid (Asuka is the protagonist while hybrid since she was a he... you know what I mean ^_^), Rurouni Kenshin, Mirai Nikki (Nikki is the protagonist, Mirai/Tomorrow is because he could "predict" the future), Tekken Chin-mi, Yu-Gi-Oh (The name is Yugi, Oh/Ou is King).

- You also could use "title" or "job" of the protagonist as the title. Ex: Nurarihyon no Mago, Phoenix Wright : Ace Attorney, Needless (title given to people who have the "power"), Defense Devil (a manga about devil who become a defense lawyer), Ex-Driver (title given to driver who use vehicle to catch bad guys).

- You could also use name of skill that used by the protagonist, or commonly used by people at the manga. Ex: Freezing, Cross-over, Ghost Trick, Zero-In (the name of unique martial art that exist in that manga).

- Or you could even resort to use term that commonly associated with manga that you make. Ex: Shoot (soccer manga), Break-Shot (billiard manga), Dribble (another soccer manga), Katana (though this is about blacksmith manga, not a samurai manga), Vagabond (a travelling/ronin samurai). Some more vague example: You Are Under Arrest (reminds you of what cop usually say), Bamboo Blade (reminds you of Kendo)

- If your manga have some kind of "gimmick" or especially unique thing (could be anything unique, from unique name, location, term, anything...) in it, you could use it. Ex: Apple Seed, Angelic Layer, ZOIDS, One Piece (the greatest treasure in the manga that everyone want to get a hold of), Deadman Wonderland ("one-in-the-world" prison in said manga).

- You could even simply said what is your manga all about. Ex: Mafia, Supernatural, Heroes, Ninja, Shinobi.
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Re: Naming your game

#7 Post by chensterrain » Sat Apr 23, 2011 11:17 pm

1. Have game idea, but no title
2. Pick words pretty much completely at random
3. ???
4. Profit!

All of the stories / projects I've started in the past have had pretty weird titles - I have a tendency to come up with what I think is a cool / punny title and then attempt to shape the story around it, which probably isn't very good practice (which is why with my current project, I figured I wouldn't even bother making the title relevant. Hoho :D). On the up side, though, games with unusual titles are much easier to find on search engines, which is great if like me you feel the compulsive need to scour the internet for every single available review of whatever game you're currently playing. :)

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Re: Naming your game

#8 Post by Snowflower » Sat Apr 23, 2011 11:45 pm

I basically outline the entire story first and think of a name for the game after.

Usually, I end up having names for stories/games with something to do with

a. the location
b. the ending
c. the character
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Re: Naming your game

#9 Post by nefferinthia » Sun Apr 24, 2011 2:47 am

Thanks everyone, this will help a great deal! I think I like your way of doing it, chensterrain!

And LVUER, your advice was really helpful too~ Though I have to say that the protagonist of Mirai Nikki is Yukiteru. The title means 'Future Diary', I think?

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Re: Naming your game

#10 Post by Samu-kun » Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:01 am

If you really can't think of one, then just make a working title until you finish your game. I'm pretty sure by the time you're done, you'll have thought of something!

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Re: Naming your game

#11 Post by LVUER » Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:07 am

@Harumi Fujyoshi:
Hmmm... you could be right. I'll take a look at the manga again (if I have the time, since it's already burrowed under pile of my old mangas -_- )
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Re: Naming your game

#12 Post by Mirage » Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:14 am

A while ago I made a poll based on titles. The titles can be divided into 2 groups, one is using common names (Endless, Everlasting Dawn, Lost Time), the other one is using bizarre words (Enigmatist, Esthic Rage, Esperaid.)

The result for the poll is heavily one sided on the common names over the bizarre names. I deduce that people can relate with common words much easier than something you pull out of thin air. However, the chance of other people using common names are higher, thus affecting the search in google. So I guess it's all depend on what you aim for.

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Re: Naming your game

#13 Post by KomiTsuku » Sun Apr 24, 2011 6:10 pm

Same way I decide most things. Stay up until I'm pushing roughly 24 hours awake, spend the last six drinking mt. dew, and then go with the first thing that hits me. In fact, I have an influence map that even shows this. My influence on game making.

Is it right? Nope. Does it work for anyone who isn't a tad nuts? Most likely not. At least it is better than the way I name chapters, a play on words of whatever song I'm listening to.

Oh, "Mirai Nikki" is "Future Diary". That is a rather creepy, yet good manga...

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Re: Naming your game

#14 Post by flowerthief » Sun Apr 24, 2011 7:09 pm

Samu-kun wrote:If you really can't think of one, then just make a working title until you finish your game. I'm pretty sure by the time you're done, you'll have thought of something!
Probably, but not in my case. A title screen is just about the only thing my game is still lacking, but I can't make the title screen until I've got a title :?
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Re: Naming your game

#15 Post by Greeny » Sun Apr 24, 2011 7:11 pm

Usually, the name just pops up in my mind automatically while I'm brainstorming about the story, and I just go with it.
One way I can tell how long I've thought about a specific story is seeing if I've got a name for it yet.
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