What’s in a Name?

Nametag 2

I have played many games over the course of my career.  For the longest time, my gaming pseudonym was Rosaelyn.  In fact, I went by Rosa until I started playing WoW.  Rosaelyn was always a character that closely resembled me – human, pale, red hair.  When I decided to become a Draenei, that did not seem fitting, since she does not resemble me physically near as much.  (In fact, that is why I have a wee human Hunter named Rosaelyn now.  Just to somewhat keep to the “tradition.”  Even though she is not a healer…)

So creating my Draenei Shaman convinced me to change my chosen pseudonym, and I became Effraeti, or more commonly, Effy. 🙂

About three years now I have been answering to that.  Even those I game with who know me by my real name still seem to call me Effy more naturally than anything else.  I find the name to suit me, even on the occasion where Effy becomes Eff’ing Effy.  Effraeti may not be a redhead, but she is still me – positive and friendly until riled, then fierce and unyielding.

Starting to blog brought even more life into Effy, and she went places I never imagined when I first molded her on the WoW creation screen.  She developed a life and breath all her own.

Now… I find myself in a mental quandary.

I am in the process of switching mains to my Monk.  My Monk, who has a whole separate personality.  Still my own, of course, since she is the product of my brain and my ideals, but NOT Effy.  She is 100% Ireenia.  She is as separate an entity to me as if she drew her own breath and physically stood beside Effy.

So I know there is no way I could make “Ireenia” into “Effraeti” and feel that was right at all.  Ireenia is a Monk.  Effraeti is a Shaman.  Ireenia is a blue dragon adopted by a Draenei and trying to adapt to a world where her race is no longer the protector.  Effraeti is a Draenei who got split into two people, died and was reborn, rescued and adopted a baby dragon, and is struggling to balance her family and her guild.

Am I too much into my stories and my roleplaying?  ><

To switch my main means to switch my pseudonym.  Somehow, this is a major hurdle for me.  Switching from Rosa to Effy was tough.  Somehow, I think switching from Effy to Ireenia is going to be even harder.

You would think names would be the least of my concerns here, eh?

And seriously, what was I thinking?  What is a good nickname for Ireenia?  :/  I suppose it would be “Iree,” which would end up sounding like “Eerie.”  Hmm.  I suppose that works.

Has anyone else struggled with changing mains because it meant changing their pseudonym?

~ Effy

16 thoughts on “What’s in a Name?

  1. I think I’d call you Nia, it comes easiest to me. On rare occasions I talk to my non-gamer husband about something in-game and he gets such a worried look when I say “she does this, and oh no, the Warlock doesn’t think like that, etc., lol. But really they all have different personalities although most likely an extension of mine.

  2. “Rini” — pronouned “ree-nee”🙂

    But I’m going to have a hard time thinking of you as someone other than “Effy” — when I see your RL name on battlenet, I think “oh, that’s Effy”, rather than thinking of you as “RL Name”.

  3. I am right there with you. I always use a certain name, ever since I played Diablo 2. I carried it with me to my first big mmo, Lineage 2. But then I made another character, and was known as that. Then another – and she was what I was most known as toward the end of my gaming there, but people still called me by my original pseudonym. Now in WoW, I’ve become known as my shaman. I feel crippled by that. I’ve only played for 2 years, so people call me by her name ALL of the time, no matter what character I play. It makes me feel guilty, like I *should* play that character (has she become the true ‘me’?) – yadda yadda. So I feel your pain 100%. Getting too hung up on a name can absolutely suck the fun out of things or keep you from playing new characters.

    As for a comment above, I am that way too. I get into the RP/immersiveness of the game, and even though every character I play ends up being ‘me’, I want to pick mounts, professions, gear, etc. that ‘fits’. So sometimes I limit myself too much or worry that it’s not ‘fitting’ for the character. Another thing that can cripple fun!

    • I agree that names and gear and mounts and background stories can limit a character (or a player), but they can also make the experience more dynamic and exciting. I am all about the story. That is part of what keeps me playing. (Awesome people are another big part!)

      ~ Effy

  4. After being Lae for so many years I’ve kept it as my Wow-identity, even though I changed mains from Laeleiweyn to Kinlai. The name Lae still feels like me, and it almost feels like Lae is a character on her own, like all my other characters.

    Ehm. xD Well, good luck!

    • Ah ha! Another who understands my predicament! Ah, well. I will likely remain Effy on the interwebz even as everyone calls me Ireenia in-game.

      ~ Effy

  5. In Star Wars Galaxies, I was Karin, a dancer, image designer and imperial spy. Karin wasn’t available in WoW, and I wanted something more warrior princess horde-like and less alliance human, so I came up with Shawndra. Shawndra hasn’t been my main for years, and I have almost got to where all my signatures except this are now my real name. I don’t think I could go with being called Delgada, mostly because I am not. Are there any voluptuous undead?

    • I am very careful about names. You never know when a character will become more important than you thought, either in game or in stories or wherever.

      Many of my characters have names looked up specifically. Effraeti is based off a fire demon/djinn called an Ifrit. Some are specific to certain cultural themes – like Ireenia, which is based on a Slavic name. Some are based on mythical characters – Caeridwen is based on the Celtic goddess of rebirth. Some are named for colors – Vaadaree is a word for “blue” in Gujarati. Some are formed from words of various languages – Sifaol literally means “she wolf” in Celtic.

      I do like my names. I think they are very important. 🙂

      ~ Effy

  6. I always had this problem too, so when I server transferred last summer all of my characters (3 at the time) got the part of my name I identify with and have been called for years as part of their name. My druid has always been my main since Vanilla, but had always gone by Cainman. I petitioned a GM and got the name “Cain” as that was the name I originally wanted, and as a result of people naturally shortening names and Grid’s 4 letters always been what people called me. My warrior became Dovahcain. My mage became Novacain. Now thanks to RaF I have one of every class, plus a second hunter and a baby second druid. Every toon except the paladin that is my main AHing toon has Cain in their name someplace.

  7. Pingback: Group Quest #106: We came, we saw, we dailied (and liked it) | Group Quest

  8. Pingback: What’s in a Name? Part 2 | Awaiting the Muse

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