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Old 11-29-2020, 05:33 AM   #21
Anders
 
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

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Originally Posted by khorboth View Post
Here's a list of just the more difficult to climb mountains named after breasts in English in North America.
Who is Molly because she has a lot of nipples. Sergeant Shadwell would not be pleased.
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Old 12-24-2020, 05:13 AM   #22
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

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Originally Posted by doctorevilbrain View Post
The advice in Gurps Space 3rd edition is useless. I'm sure that's why it was taken out. Kudzu? Come on. I know there are online generators, but I am looking for advice. I read about how you name things, but I was hoping for more than foreign languages.
Medicines are named using a set of pieces meant to describe and differentiate.

So: set up a group of nonsense word-parts according to the familiar GURPS rocky, hot, ice, etc, then a similar list of non-repeating parts for next most important descriptor, and on down. EmRonMitFab, frex.

I have use the Japanese syllabary for this: RiRoReRaRu, KiKaKo- etc. Rokofubi frex.

Lensman had simple letters for life-forms and planetary conditions, AAAAAAA naturally being Earth normal human, frex.

Though watch out pre-used names such as planet EffBeeI.
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Old 12-28-2020, 04:27 PM   #23
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

For garden planets, I go with female names -- especially goddess names -- because they nurture life.

In Stellaris, I name the colony worlds female names that are alliterative with the star name. So, if Sirius has an habitable planet, I may name it "Sarah" or even, "Siri." Alpha Centauri's might be, "Alice."

For terraformable planets, I go with male god names that match some feature. So, an ocean-world might be named Poseidon (we already have a Neptune, after all), or a desert world, Melqart.

I do like Larry Niven's naming conventions, in his Known Space setting. Before they acquired FTL travel, the humans on the generation colony ships started to name habitable planets according to the first significant thing said by the scout team or people studying it.

So, the name of the planet might be "Plateau," but the name of the mountain that extends above the hot dense atmosphere high enough to make a colony viable is called, "Mount Lookitthat."

Another colony planet is named, "We Made It," and the main settlement is called, "Crashlanding City."
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Old 12-28-2020, 05:16 PM   #24
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

And if it was a rough landing, the name may be unprintable on this forum.
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Old 12-28-2020, 08:45 PM   #25
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

That's why there are so many planets named, "Fudge", "Shoot", and "Motherfriend".
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Old 12-28-2020, 09:44 PM   #26
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

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Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
That's why there are so many planets named, "Fudge", "Shoot", and "Motherfriend".
That actually was once a habit among Scotch-Irish. Later surveyors had a bit of a clean up job.
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Old 01-01-2021, 02:09 AM   #27
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Default Re: How do you name planets?

I ask myself: what kind of name is it, and who named it, and what were they thinking when they named it?

For ex, a habitable planet being settled by a group of Terrans out from Earth: who are they? Are they Americans? Imperials? Israelis? Australians?

Then I ask myself, why are they settling it? What motivated them to leave Earth? How voluntary was it? What motivates them to stick together? That all feeds into the answer.

So let's say the settlers are a party of Americans, again let's say a splinter group of Mormons, they're settling in 2121. They left voluntarily because they were in schism with the main church, which is very powerful in Utah, and there's a lot of social tension. OTOH, there's no legal problems, Mormons are well-accepted/tolerated by the USA in 2121. But they want to settle in a majority-Mormon community, and there aren't very many of those outside Utah in 2121.

So this group might name their new planet after church founders, it might be called Young's World, or Brighamia, or maybe they'd call it New Utah, or New Provost, or maybe Salt Lake's World. If they have or had a charismatic leader for their splinter faction, they might name it after him.

Or suppose the group is French nationalists who hate the Empire (France is governed by a powerful empire in 2121 in my future). They might call their world New France, or Parisia, or maybe even Gaul, or possibly de Gaulle. They might name it after a subregion of France like Britanny or Aquitaine. But probably wouldn't name it after the Empress.

The same principle applies elsewhere. If the planet was named by a bored survey officer, it might be named after his dog or his girlfriend or his aunt. If it has some distinctive feature or trait, that might provide a name, depending on who is doing the naming. A geologist by training might name a world after some peculiarity of its soil or rocks or other physical nature. An artist might pick a name based on what the planet looks like from orbit.

Ask yourself who named it, and under what circumstances, and usually possibilities will present themselves.
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