What's in a Name?

April 18, 2019

 

Lili Goodman is a woman of Estonian descent who goes by the nickname "Akka." Claris Rhys uses they/them pronouns and identifies as non-binary. Hailing from Luxembourg, Nathalie Gschwandtner, Esq. is often called "Das Wunderkind" due to her skills in the courtroom. Chief Ojigkwanong Grivetti V is a Native American man and Algonquian speaker. While the origins of Binh Tamar II may be unknown, their alias "Nova" is known world-wide.

Before you can write a backstory or a compelling personality quirk, you need to give your character a name. But coming up with a fitting name can be difficult, especially if you have dozens or even hundreds of characters! This is an issue we ran into while working on Project Ocelot, so we turned to automation. We created our very own random name generator. All of the characters above were generated by our Character Name Generator.

The Character Name Generator is a Unity Plug-in designed to easily generate random character names, nicknames, genders, and origins while remaining robust, modifiable, and expandable. No setup is required, and it works straight out of the box! Generated names can be filtered by gender, name format, and origin. The Character Name Generator comes with a variety of easily modifiable settings such as the ability to prevent reusing recently generated names, toggle support for Unicode characters, and adjust the probabilities of how names are generated.

 

 

The Character Name Generator uses JSON files containing thousands of names for its generation, making it easy for users to edit and expand on the lists of available names. Here's a breakdown of the names included:
 

Name Prefixes : 101

Male : 64

Female : 73

Unisex : 36

 

Given Names : 61,896

Male : 43,020

Female : 41,829

Unisex : 22,953

 

Family Names : 158,024

 

Name Suffixes : 10

 

Nicknames : 1,515

Male : 1,429

Female : 1,365

Unisex : 1,279

 

Origins : 101

Categories : 7

Subcategories : 22

 

Genders : 3

 

Pronouns : 3

 

Total Possible Name Combinations

91,864,015,038,900,000,000,000

 

Over 91 sextillion is an incomprehensibly huge number of possible name combinations! To help put that into context, that is more than the estimated number of stars in the known universe (70 sextillion). That's more than 15x the mass of Earth in metric tons (6 sextillion).

 

So the next time you are writing a character, you may want to consider using a random name generator. The Character Name Generator is available for purchase on the Unity Asset Store.

 

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We are currently working on our first game under the code name Project Ocelot. Follow our blog or sign up for our mailing list for all of the latest news on this project. 

 

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