Stamp Out Bad Guild Names!June 9, 2008
As we continue our summer-long stretch gearing up for WAR — and this may require you to ingest a metric ton of Red Bull to match the excitement jitters of Paul Barnett — guilds are forming left and right in preparation. Friend A goes “Dude?” and Friend B answers “Dude.” and thus, a guild is born.
It’s important in these halcyon days to urge each and every would-be guild out there to pause before rushing up to the Guild Portal altar, and to think of a decent, somewhat original name for their band of brothers (and sisters). Like your own character name, guild names are all about identity — but in this case, the identity of a group. Herein lies the danger: if you hate your own character name, you can always reroll. If a guild slaps up the first dumb name or phrase that pops into their head and grows to regret it, chances are they’re stuck for life.
What’s more, guild names are your first, best hope of advertising. The actions of anyone with your guild tag will be forever associated with your guild, for better or worse. Moreso, people are alternatively repulsed and attracted to stupid and clever guild names, respectively. You may have the coolest, friendliest guild in these parts, but when people see <Bosom Express> as your guild tag, they aren’t going to come in droves. Yet if your guild name makes people laugh, or sticks in their head, or peaks their interest — you’ve succeeded in spreading your fame.
So consider this my act of public service for the week: helping would-be guild leaders to avoid falling into the same moronic traps of their forefathers. When considering a guild title, please avoid the following:
- Let’s just agree to refrain from using “Dark”, “Night”, “Shadows”, “Death” or “Blood” in any guild name — they sound too emo-pretentious. Trust me, nobody is going to be awed by how darkly mysterious you’re trying to be.
- ANY and EVERY guild name that uses a vague Latin phrase. Listen, people, it’s a dead language for a reason, and been beaten to death like a bad, bad horse in MMOs everywhere. It grates on my nerves like fingernails on a chalkboard whenever I see someone badly parsing Latin in a guild tag.
- More overused words: “Phoenix”, “Order” (J.K. Rowling, I blame you for these), “Legion” (you’re not a legion, you’re six guys and fifty alts), “Knight”, “Alliance”, “War”, “Guild” and “Crusaders”.
- Double so for <Allied Knights of the Phoenix War Legion>.
- Triple so if you can rewrite the above in Latin.
- Dull guild names… seen waaaay too many of these. Usually one word, usually forgettable.
- Misspelled words. Please. It’s your guild NAME we’re talking about here… you can afford the extra ten seconds for a spell-check between liveblogging on Twitter.
- Names that alternate caps in them LiKe tHiS.
- Tired pop culture references with a shelf life of two minutes – <Paris Hiltoneers>
- Short is sweet, unless there’s a darn good reason for maxing out the guild name line. Let me put it another way: the more words you have in your guild name, it better be exponentially more clever than a one- or two-worded guild title.
- Anything that advertises immaturity or is offensive.
- Leet speak. Good gravy, leet speak must DIE.
- Anything that might have appeared on a fantasy Trapper Keeper in the 80’s and 90s – unicorns, rainbows, dragons, wizards and stars.
- Something other people have done before, many times, to the point where it confuses people which guild you’re in (hey, I liked “My Little Pwnies” too, but enough is enough).
- Following this template: “[Cliché] of [Place]”. <Crusaders of New Jersey> or <Order of Fries>. No, wait, that last one amuses me. Scratch that. <Order of Camelot>. There we go.
- Accent characters — like your own character names, if you have to plug in weird ALT+159-ish characters into your guild name to either be weird or to because someone else has the exact same guild name, you fail. And you’ll piss people off, too.
Remember, kids, good guild names take effort, time and creativity — skimp on any of those, and you’ll skimp on your guild’s future!
P.S. – Get in your guess for our Open Beta/NDA Drop Office Pool today!