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    Names derived from deities
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    CF Admin

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    Fri Feb 03, 2023 8:06 pm  
    Names derived from deities

    In developing my current campaign, I've been collecting names, using https://www.behindthename.com and Google Translate, and playing with words, sounds, accents, etc. in an effort to create a list of "Oerthly" names instead of ones that seem to Earthly.

    While doing so, I realized that I should eschew names that derive from Christ and Mary, for example, and then I realized that many names in the Flanaess should derive from the gods of Oerth.

    Below are some examples. I welcome your additions, critiques, suggestions, etc.

    Allitur: Alin, Alit, Allin, Allit, Itur, Llitur, Turian

    Atroa: Atroa, Roa, Troa

    Beory: Beor, Orey, Ori, Oriy, Ory

    Berei: Berei, Erei, Rei

    Delleb: Dell, Elle, Lleb

    Celestian: Celeste, Celesti, Celestia, Celestian, Ele, Eles, Elest, Elesti, Tian

    Fharlanghn: Arla, Arlan, Fhar, Langhn

    Fortubo: Forr, Fort, Turb, Urbo

    Heward: Ard, Eward, Hew, Heward

    Kelanen: Anen, Kel, Kela, Kelanen, Kelani, Kila, Lan, Lanen

    Kord: Ko, Kor, Kord, Ord, Ordo

    Joramy: Joramy

    Lirr: Lirr

    Lydia: Lydia

    Mayaheine: Maya

    Merikka: Merikka

    Murlynd: Lynd, Mur, Murl, Murlynd

    Myrhiss: Myrhiss

    Norebo: Norebo, Orebo, Rebo

    Pelor: Elor, Lor, Pel, Pelor

    Olidammara: Damara, Mara, Olíd, Olida

    Osprem: Ospré

    Rao: Rao

    Rudd: Rudd

    St. Bane: Bane

    St. Cuthbert: Bert, Cuth, Cuthbert

    Trithereon: Thereon, Therion

    Velnius: Elnius, Nius, Vel

    Xerbo: Bo, Erbo, Xer

    Zilchus: Chus, Zil

    Zodal: Dal, Odal, Zodal
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    Sat Feb 04, 2023 9:35 am  

    I like the names you've derived from the syllables quite a bit, but I'd eschew using those identical to the deity's name to prevent multiplication of imaginary entities and confusion at the gaming table.
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    Sat Feb 04, 2023 10:09 am  

    I was thinking about this a little lately, too. Was contemplating some old Flan place that had once been "Pelorodunum" as an analogy to Lughdunum, for instance.

    This list is definitely food for those thoughts.
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    Sun Feb 05, 2023 5:38 am  

    edmundscott wrote:
    I like the names you've derived from the syllables quite a bit, but I'd eschew using those identical to the deity's name to prevent multiplication of imaginary entities and confusion at the gaming table.


    Of course, since it is a vast pantheon, one could have Xerbo of the Solnor, Bo of the Azure, and Xerbo of the Nyr Dyv. Kind of like the way the Romans had Capitoline Jupiter, Jupiter Optimus Maximus, Jupiter of the kitchen, and Jupiter Fulminatus.

    How complex do you want your theology to be? Or more accurately, how diverse do you want the Flanaess to be? For my part, I like making the Flanaess a diverse place and I dispense with Common as a language, making travel and new places more exotic and challenging for characters. The upper class East of the Sheldomar speak Old Oeridian, while the lower classes speak a variety of Vulgates such as Keoish, Velondi, etc. Xerbo may end up with different names in different regions, but the ceremonies, vestments, etc are the same...
    CF Admin

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    Tue Feb 07, 2023 10:11 pm  

    edmundscott wrote:
    I like the names you've derived from the syllables quite a bit, but I'd eschew using those identical to the deity's name to prevent multiplication of imaginary entities and confusion at the gaming table.

    Thanks for your comment. Yeah, I'm unsure if I want folks IMC to use the deities' actual names as given names. On Earth, the Spanish "Jesus" is the most obvious analogue, and in English, the various permutations of Christian seem similar.

    tarelton wrote:
    Of course, since it is a vast pantheon, one could have Xerbo of the Solnor, Bo of the Azure, and Xerbo of the Nyr Dyv. Kind of like the way the Romans had Capitoline Jupiter, Jupiter Optimus Maximus, Jupiter of the kitchen, and Jupiter Fulminatus.

    How complex do you want your theology to be? Or more accurately, how diverse do you want the Flanaess to be? For my part, I like making the Flanaess a diverse place and I dispense with Common as a language, making travel and new places more exotic and challenging for characters. The upper class East of the Sheldomar speak Old Oeridian, while the lower classes speak a variety of Vulgates such as Keoish, Velondi, etc. Xerbo may end up with different names in different regions, but the ceremonies, vestments, etc are the same...

    That's interesting. At first, I mistook your first paragraph, thinking you were distinguishing people whose given name was that of a deity, plus a place name. Upon review, I now understand you are talking about names for different aspects of Oerth's deities.

    In general, I'm for more complexity in campaigns, so I'm open to your first paragraph's suggestions, but I think that the potency of the deities has a "conservative" or orthodox effect on their worship such that their worship bears striking resemblance across the Flanaess at the end of the sixth Common Year century. Note that I neither mean to deny cultural differences in their worship, churches, etc., nor suggest that different forms or rites of worship might be deemed heretical, etc. But, access to augury, commune, and similar spells suggests that worship of a deity may have greater similarity on Oerth than on Earth.

    Regarding your second paragraph, I've kept the Common-vocca but nuance it with regional dialects. For example, my campaign presently features Common (Keoish), Common (Seolder), Common (Sharian), and Common (Patois). The first one is basically the fusion of Keolandish with Common. The second is based on the first (since much of the Hold of the Sea Princes was Keoland's March, later Duchy, of Monmurg) but has evolved over the subsequent hundred-and-fifty years in light of the Seolder's cosmopolitan trade and exploration. The third is how people from the "Kingdom of Shar" speak Common, and the fourth is a placeholder for an emergent dialect of Common that derives from the encounter between Common (Seolder), Suel (Amedian), and Olman in the Hold of the Sea Princes. (I've yet to decide whether the Touv exist in my current campaign, but if they do, then their language would also contribute to the Common (Patois) of the Hold.)

    As intimated above, my campaign also features dialects of the other canon major languages. E.g., Suel (Sharian), Suel (Lendorian), Suel (Fruz, a.k.a., the Cold Tongue), and Suel (Amedian).
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    Wed Feb 08, 2023 5:06 pm  
    Named After...

    For an Oerthly name, I straight up named my drow PC Eclavdra. ...But she's in someone's homebrew which isn't Oerth. It's all good. The DM and the players don't know. They don't care. :)
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    Wed Feb 08, 2023 5:55 pm  

    My players would kill a drow character named Eclavdra out of reflex LOL

    She's a major recurring villain in my game :D
    CF Admin

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    Wed Feb 08, 2023 10:00 pm  

    More names derived from Oerth's deities.

    Al'Akbar: Akba, Akbar, Al’Akbar, Aqba, Arak, Araq, Barak

    Azor'alq: Alq, Azor, Azor’alq, Azzo, Zor

    Heironeous: Eiro, Eiron, Eós, Eörn, Eöron, Eürn, Eron, Eus, Neus, Roán, Rōn, Rone,

    Jascar: Asca, Askar, Car, Çar, Carl, Jas, Jascar, Jask, Karl

    Phaulkon: Aul, Aulk, Aulkon, Falc, Falcon, Falk, Hal, Haul, L’kon, Ulkon,

    Pholtus: Hal, Hol, Holt, Hul, Hult, L’tus, Phol, Pholt, Pholtus, Photus, Tiss, Tus

    Phyton: Fi, Fit, Fy, Fyt, Itén, Itón, Phy, Phyt, Toan, Ton, Tone, Yt, Ytón

    Ulaa: Lana, Lar, Lara, Las, Lua, Luat, Ula, Ulaa, Ulana, Ulat

    Wee Jas: Eeja, Eejas, Eja, Jase, Jasée, Weja, Wē’ja, Wejas, Wejasa
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    Thu Feb 09, 2023 8:03 pm  
    Re: Names derived from deities

    mtg wrote:
    In developing my current campaign,


    Ooooh, tell us more, Marc! :D

    mtg wrote:
    I've been collecting names, using https://www.behindthename.com and Google Translate, and playing with words, sounds, accents, etc. in an effort to create a list of "Oerthly" names instead of ones that seem to Earthly.

    While doing so, I realized that I should eschew names that derive from Christ and Mary, for example, and then I realized that many names in the Flanaess should derive from the gods of Oerth.

    Below are some examples. I welcome your additions, critiques, suggestions, etc.


    A great idea. I've tried to avoid contemporary names in my campaigns, and tend to simply make names up, but in my current campaigns I've been working on more consistent place-naming (in particular in Henry's seafaring solo campaign: Relaqua, Arx Ignisor, Nyrhallaen, Arx Tellium, Nurűm, Obbreton, Laxam Priory, Asarden, Conorilla, Fenrill's Point, Balli), and racial naming phonics (dwarven, elvish, and drowic names inspired by Tolkien's languages)

    Tolkien discusses some more thoughts along these lines in "A Secret Vice: Tolkien on Invented Languages" which is excellent.

    Some other ideas, inspired by yours:

    Allitur: Llitur --> Lillitur, Turian --> Ttur --> Tur

    Atroa: Atroa--> Atraa, Troa --> Tro --> Troh

    Celestian: Elesti --> Elestian, Tian --> Lestian

    Fharlanghn: Arla, Arlan, Fhar, Langhn

    Fortubo: Fort --> Fortu, Turb --> Trubo, Urbo --> Bo

    Heward: Eward --> Evard!, Heward --> Ward --> Whard

    Kelanen: Kelanen --> Elan

    Joramy: Joramy --> Jorm, Jormy, Jora, Joram, Oram, Orami

    Lirr: Lirr --> Li, Lirra

    Lydia: Lydia --> Lyd, Dia

    Mayaheine: Maya --> Mayah --> Aya, May, Yahein

    Merikka: Merikka --> Merik, Merrik, Merrikka, Rikka, Meri

    Murlynd: Lynd --> Lyn, Mur --> Murd, Murlynd --> Rlynd --> Urlynd --> Urlind

    Myrhiss: Myrhiss --> Myr, Myrha, Myrhi, Yryss--> Yriss --> Uriss --> Urissa

    Norebo: Norebo --> Nor --> Nohr, Orebo --> Oreb, Rebo --> Ebo --> Eeb

    Olidammara: Damara --> Dammara --> Dammar --> Damra, Mara --> Mar, Lidamm --> Lidam --> Lida, Ammara/Amara --> Ammar --> Amar

    Osprem: Prem --> Rem

    Rudd: Rudd --> Udd

    St. Cuthbert: Cuthbert --> Uthbert, Uthber, (and perhaps Cuth --> Cuthb with a silent b?), Cu

    Trithereon: Trith, Thrithe, Rith, Rithereon, Ritheria, Ereon, Itheri, Hereon, Reon

    Velnius: Vel --> Veln --> Eln, Elni

    Zodal: Zodal --> Zod, Zode, Zoda

    Al'Akbar: Al’Akbar --> Alak --> Alakh --> Lakh

    Heironeous: [aside: Henry and I realized while working on his solo campaign that his name is a pun for Erroneous, which I hadn't even noticed before! :D )

    Jascar: Jas, Jascar --> Jask, Jasc, Jasque

    [/quote]


    Others to consider as well:

    Zagyg has lots of permuatations already, so I'm not sure it's worth diluting those further ;)

    Nerull: Rull --> Rul, Erull, Neru, Nerul, Ull (hmmmm.....)

    Incabulos: Incab, Cabulos, Ulos, Cabulo, Cabul

    Syrul: Syr, Yrul

    Pyremius: Yremi --> Remi, Remius, Pyrem --> Pyrm, Mus

    Tharizdun: Thari, Ariz, Dun, Izdu, Izdun, Hariz, Harizdu, Harizdun

    Daern: Daer --> Dar, Darn

    Johydee: Johy --> Joy, Joydee --> Jydee --> Jade

    Ehlissa: Lissa --> Liss, Ehliss, Ehli

    Ralishaz: Rali, Ralis --> Alis/Aliz --> Ahlis/Ahliz, Lisha , Lishan, Lishaz, Shaz

    And a few famous personages:

    Mordenkainen: Morden (ha!--Bablyon 5!), Denkain, Orden, Ordenkay/Ordenkai, Nen, Kaiynen

    Robilar: Rob (long o), Liar (Lee-ahr)

    Serten: Ser, Sert, Erten, Erte

    Tenser: Ten, Tens, Enser, Nser


    A very fun idea, Marc, thank you for sharing! :D

    Allan.
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    Fri Feb 10, 2023 10:13 am  
    Evil

    My Eclavdra is part of an evil campaign.

    For my characters that I rolled using the OA book, I took a different approach. The OA book is so influenced by Japanese concepts that I would roll different dice for random letters for the family name and then took what I understand to be a typical Japanese name for the given name. So my bushi character's given name is Ichiro. His family name with one die to determine the name ended up being C which seems a little wacky at first but I kind of like it. I don't have the other characters in front of me right now so I'll look them up later.

    My plan was to use one more die with each character I rolled for variety sake. I did this years ago. If I remember right, I would roll to see if I would roll for a consonant or vowel (probably 50/50 chances) and then I'd use a d20 for a consonant value and d6 for a vowel value. I figured if Y is sometimes a vowel, then it could be the result for a 6. So this method will give you something that doesn't sound like names from home though it won't sound like something from Oerth in particular either. But then where do the authors of Oerth material get their names? I figure they might not all have a unified idea on how to develop names like posts in this thread are suggesting.
    GreySage

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    Fri Feb 10, 2023 3:53 pm  

    You could consider lengthening divine names, not just shortening them, in the way that "Christopher" is longer than "Christ," and "Samuel" is longer than "El."
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    Fri Feb 10, 2023 7:49 pm  

    Thanks Allan and Rip. Here's a revision for Allitur that incorporates your suggestions.

    Folks, if you feel so moved, keep 'em coming. Unless someone suggests a better way to do it (e.g., https://ghwiki.greyparticle.com/index.php/Main_Page), I could create a Google Doc so folks can add the names they devise.

    Allitur:

    Alin, Alit, Alitur, Alituria, Aliturian, Aliturias, Alituriel, Allin, Allit, Allitur, Allituria, Alliturian, Alliturias,

    Itur, Ituria, Iturian, Iturias, Ituriel, Iturien

    Lillitur, Lillituria, Lilliturian, Lilliturias, Lituria, Liturian, Liturias, Llitur, Llituria, Lliturian, Lliturias,

    Ttur, Tur, Turia, Turian, Turias, Turiel, Turien
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    Fri Feb 10, 2023 8:25 pm  
    Re: Names derived from deities

    grodog wrote:
    mtg wrote:
    In developing my current campaign,

    Ooooh, tell us more, Marc! :D

    I'll try to post an overview and/or summary later this month. I've written hundreds of pages (literally) of campaign documents—most of them session logs—and feel ready to start sharing parts here on Canonfire!, in the Oerth Journal, etc.
    grodog wrote:
    I've tried to avoid contemporary names in my campaigns, and tend to simply make names up, but in my current campaigns I've been working on more consistent place-naming (in particular in Henry's seafaring solo campaign: Relaqua, Arx Ignisor, Nyrhallaen, Arx Tellium, Nurűm, Obbreton, Laxam Priory, Asarden, Conorilla, Fenrill's Point, Balli), and racial naming phonics (dwarven, elvish, and drowic names inspired by Tolkien's languages)

    Tolkien discusses some more thoughts along these lines in "A Secret Vice: Tolkien on Invented Languages" which is excellent.

    I like your place-naming Allan, and thanks for informing me about that essay. I've yet to explore Tolkien's essays / scholarship, and this looks like a fine place to start.

    Raymond wrote:
    For my characters that I rolled using the OA book, I took a different approach. . . .

    My plan was to use one more die with each character I rolled for variety sake. I did this years ago. If I remember right, I would roll to see if I would roll for a consonant or vowel (probably 50/50 chances) and then I'd use a d20 for a consonant value and d6 for a vowel value. I figured if Y is sometimes a vowel, then it could be the result for a 6. So this method will give you something that doesn't sound like names from home though it won't sound like something from Oerth in particular either. But then where do the authors of Oerth material get their names? I figure they might not all have a unified idea on how to develop names like posts in this thread are suggesting.

    That's interesting. I've started randomizing my NPCs' significant dates (e.g., birth, marriage, death) using https://www.calculator.net/dice-roller.html – either a d364 or a d52 followed by a d7, but for names I have been creating lists, cribbed from myriad sources (film credits have been particularly fruitful) and exploring https://www.behindthename.com, especially the "Related Names – Variants" and "Other Languages & Cultures" entries.

    Raymond wrote:
    But then where do the authors of Oerth material get their names? I figure they might not all have a unified idea on how to develop names like posts in this thread are suggesting.

    Allan and others can speak better to this than me, but there are many sources, including anagrams, puns, and other word play (e.g., Heironeous sounding like erroneous, as Allan noted above, Zilchus evoking "zilch," etc.).
    GreySage

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    Sat Feb 11, 2023 11:43 am  

    These are some fun ways to invent meaningful names for PCs and NPCs. Thank you folks for sharing them.

    I have found that foreign names - especially from old, no longer spoken - languages make for great additions to the game. I have used Latin, Old English, Norse, Hebrew, Celtic, Amerind, and others.

    On a final note, a thesaurus is magic when coming up with cool-sounding names. Happy

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    Thu Feb 16, 2023 10:29 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...I have found that foreign names - especially from old, no longer spoken - languages make for great additions to the game. I have used Latin, Old English, Norse, Hebrew, Celtic, Amerind, and others...


    -Sometimes, I use "Historical Names Make for Better Games" from Dragon #49. In one case, I needed two dozen names for a (mostly) Frost Barbarian crew, but instead of Thorvald and Thorfinn, I substituted Llergvald and Llergfinn. Elsewhere, there's an NPC named Kordfinn.
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    Mon Feb 20, 2023 7:57 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    I have found that foreign names - especially from old, no longer spoken - languages make for great additions to the game. I have used Latin, Old English, Norse, Hebrew, Celtic, Amerind, and others.

    SirXaris, I too favor languages that have been marginalized by a national language (e.g., Catalan instead of French, Portuguese, or Spanish), or which otherwise seem obscure to me (e.g., Macedonian instead of Greek) as a start. Then I play with letters until they feel right to me. (Perhaps because of my ignorance of them, I've found several Slavic languages particularly generative.)

    For example, even though it derives from a word that has no place on Oerth (i.e., Mars), consider the BehindTheName.com entry for Marcus. The Marko and Markos variants intrigued me, and I ultimately went with Markost and, later for another name, Marek.

    jamesdglick wrote:
    Sometimes, I use "Historical Names Make for Better Games" from Dragon #49. In one case, I needed two dozen names for a (mostly) Frost Barbarian crew, but instead of Thorvald and Thorfinn, I substituted Llergvald and Llergfinn. Elsewhere, there's an NPC named Kordfinn.

    Thanks for sharing that article jamesdglick. I was unfamiliar with it, like it, and appreciate how you replaced Thor-derived prefixes with Llergian or Kordian ones.

    These Google Spreadsheets Names (Feminine) and Names (Masculine) neither include the deity-derived names featured earlier in this discussion, nor all of the names I've used IMC, but I share them now to further our discussion.

    If you'd like to contribute to them, let me know (here or by DM), and I will add you as an editor.

    PS - Instead of a separate list for gender neutral names, I've simply included some names on both lists. If you have suggestions for how better to present them, please let me know!
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    Tue Feb 21, 2023 11:15 am  

    mtg wrote:


    ...These Google Spreadsheets Names (Feminine) and Names (Masculine) neither include the deity-derived names featured earlier in this discussion, nor all of the names I've used IMC, but I share them now to further our discussion...


    -I just added them to my pre-existing DD Greyhawk/Misc./Names file.
    This was already there: http://ebon.pyorre.net/
    ...but seems to be defunct.
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    Tue Feb 21, 2023 7:37 pm  

    I have some downloaded ZIP files of the Everchanging Book of Names, which wasn't defunct when I last looked at it a few years ago (probably in the middle of March 2020).

    Sami Pyôrre, a Finnish programmer (IIRC), created this random name generator in the late 1990s. The version I have has a readme.txt file that says it is "designed to run on Windows 98."

    Also, in addition to the basic "chapter files" (for various Earthly and fantasy languages), I have a couple of chapter files for Greyhawk.

    If anyone would like me to email you the ZIP files, let me know your preferred email address.
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    Wed Feb 22, 2023 7:12 pm  
    Re: Names derived from deities

    mtg wrote:
    Raymond wrote:
    But then where do the authors of Oerth material get their names? I figure they might not all have a unified idea on how to develop names like posts in this thread are suggesting.


    Allan and others can speak better to this than me, but there are many sources, including anagrams, puns, and other word play (e.g., Heironeous sounding like erroneous, as Allan noted above, Zilchus evoking "zilch," etc.).


    In addition to my homages and anagrams page at https://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/gh_anagrams.html you should check out Tzelios' piece at http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=372 and these on naming: http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=914 and http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=3786&start=0&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=

    mtg wrote:
    Also, in addition to the basic "chapter files" (for various Earthly and fantasy languages), I have a couple of chapter files for Greyhawk.

    If anyone would like me to email you the ZIP files, let me know your preferred email address.


    I would be happy to check them out, thanks Marc! :D

    Allan.
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    Sun Mar 12, 2023 7:50 pm  

    I'd forgotten that there's an essay in the Judges Guild book, _Treasury of Archaic Names_ that talks to different ways to modify names for gaming: https://www.acaeum.com/jg/Item0096.html

    I'll reread after GaryCon to see if there's any additional suggestions worth digging into for Greyhawk consideration :D

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