1. SteveG177

    SteveG177 New Member

    Aug 29, 2016
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    Names / Terms

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by SteveG177, Aug 29, 2016.

    Hi, all. This is my first post, because I didn't really know where to turn for help. I have invented a complicated "resource-driven" board game, and I need help settling on the names of buildings, cards, characters, etc. The game centers around competitive town-building, and the various hazards and afflictions that can befall a town and its citizens, from blizzards to disease to political upheaval, but also more mundane things like clerical lapses, annoying remodeling inconveniences, shareholder meetings and power outages.

    My frame of reference in terms of the names of things are loosely designed on games like Dominion, where every one of dozens of cards has a name and an action that is somewhat related to the name. In Dominion, a "Militia," "Spy," "Thief," "Saboteur" and "Witch" are attack cards (they hinder an opponent), a "Mine," "Trade Route" or "Moneylender" are cards that grant extra money, a "Council Room," "Laboratory," "Wharf" and "Smithy" generate extra cards, etc. As you can see, the names are all sort of turn-of-the-century "vintage" in tone.

    I gave all of my characters, cards, buildings and etc. temporary names during the process of determining the rules, and I had no criteria for the names other than that they had something vaguely to do with the content of the card. As a result, I ended up with a wide variety of styles. 4 of my resource cards, for example, are "Suggestion Box," "First Aid Kit," "Canned Vegetables," and "Roller Disco." Roller Disco??!! Some of my utility cards are Dominion-like ("Carpenter, Skeleton Key, Steel Bunker"), and some are quirky ("Fire Marshall Bribe"). It clearly seems like certain names and terms that I use ("Prismatic Option," "End Dice," "Frontiersman," "Red Circle Penalty," "Stern Actuary") stick out weirdly among the rest of the names.

    So now (when I am about to formalize the rules) is the time for me to figure out the tone of this game. I'd prefer to do something quirky for all of the names, though there are over 100 total names of things and it may become difficult to sustain quirkiness and still have things be somewhat coherent. The game has enough complexity for me not to want players to dwell on confusing names of items, or be overwhelmed by what seems like a cascade of craziness. Alternately, I could replace all the quirky names with mundane names, but I think this might be less enjoyable, not to mention that it would be closer to copying the terms used in other board games.

    So this isn't specifically a creative writing project, and yet I don't know where else to go to brainstorm something like this. If anyone is able to point me toward help, or wants to spend a few hours working with me on names and terms (I'd give you credit on the finished product), please let me know.

  2. SardonicWriter

    SardonicWriter Member

    Jan 7, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Neat idea. Collaborative projects are always interesting. That would be a fun friday night.
    ...So the lack of comments suggest to me that people would rather not waste their time on a post that comes off as: "Please. Do my work for me." That's reasonable. What is it he wants?

    Steve, my friend. In earnest. Are you for realsies? Did you make an account here to draw attention to your project? Or did you copy and paste that thing from somewhere else to see if anyone bit and posted a comment, you know, for kicks? Like, you totally must've anticipated this. You know how these damn communities are...
    Look, it's not working, Steve. You managed to lure one little fishie, though, and for that, a high five. SLAP! I wish you nothing but the best, Steve. For your board game and your love life.

    P.S. - Writer's Beat is helpful.
    Cave Troll and Spencer1990 like this.

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