I own both Inspiration Pad and also another generator called TableSmith. Has anyone created any libraries for either of these two applications? I am specifically looking for Fantasy genre names, mostly places... I did review the Wiki article on Place-Names "Toponymy" but might need to build on the foundations of what others have done for these two apps instead of starting from scratch.
Hrm . . . I'm sort of working on a library based on Old Norse for Inspiration Pad. Haven't gotten very far on it as it is very very much a side project attached to my current World Building Project. Once (read that as IF) I manage to get it all together, I'd be happy to share.
As always I found this thread too late.
While following Ascension's antique map tutorial I was horrified when it came to the part of city naming. I tried a few name generators, but was not really happy with them. So I wrote a small program for this in VB. Perhaps you will find it useful.
Excellent, I will so have to give that a try.
I know what you mean about the naming portion of that tutorial, I went kind of nuts when I was placing town markers, completely forgot what i would be in for on the next step.
Still, hang in there, it's worth doing all the tedious work in the long run. I was amazed I actually managed to name everything without resorting to a generator, but I'm looking forward to having a tool such as yours at hand for the next version :)
I usually generate Dutch-sounding and derived names for my current project (which is my most serious mapping endeavour to date). But it works in English too. Look at regions and then to the names in that region. Quite often, you'll note similarities.
Looking at Wikipedia entries for real place names often reveals something about the history of the name. If you read enough of these, you'll end up with a good feeling for place names in your language if you look at these descriptions enough.
Important is to learn to fluently put landscape elements into a well flowing name. And fluent is really relative. Just plunking two words after each other often works. The trick is to get a feeling for WHICH words.
Also try to use multiple variations of names. A forest, some plains and a town can all easily be derived from one name. Also, don't feel afraid to take a name, add 'bridge', 'swamp' or similar endings to it and use them on the same map near the original.
Wold is a Dutch alternative to 'Woud' which means something like 'forest' or 'wood'. So in a region, one could create several names by adding the Dutch words for 'North, East, South and West' (Noord, Oost, Zuider en West) to that name: Noordwolde, Oosterwolde, Zuidwolde, Westwolde. (Ooster = Eastern). So that would basically translate to 'Northwood, Eastwood, Southwood, and Westwood'. So real names are not all that original either ;) (especially since even those translations seem to exist). Always try to find synonyms for key words: Castle, Keep, Stronghold etc. That's also where looking at real names and their history is useful, here you often find different synonyms (which are often ancient words shorthanded) which cannot be found in a synonym dictionary.
Another fun way is to look at wiki-entries, and search for the OLD names of towns. Grantebrycge makes for a very impressive fantasy name... but actually, it's Cambridge's old name. It's possible to take this a step further, and modify it slightly. Grantebridge makes for a slightly more pronounceable name.
I have actually thought of using a Tagalog (Filipino) influenced naming convention, my wife is from their so translations are easy. Still haven't made up my mind about it though.
Nah, I don't like name generators. Doesn't have anything with my language.
About english toponymy, can someone explain me the rules about the use of St. ans Ste. instead of Saint and Sainte ?
For exemple : "St. Louis" "Sault Ste. Marie" "Saint Lawrence" "St. Elizabeth" and so on...
AFAIK, Not English. French! Ste. (Sainte) is the French while St. (Saint) is the English.
Originally Posted by Rigil
St. is just an abbreviation for Saint and Ste is the feminine abbreviation. St. Louis was named for the crusader king King Louis of France. Sometimes in various online forms I have to use the full Saint instead of St.