The Name That Might Have Been

After much thought I realize that my website, The Magical Buffet, is suffering from a tangible set back. No matter how successful this website might ever be, regardless of how much notoriety I personally gain, The Magical Buffet will never be as successful as it could have been because I did not let the guys who create “Savage Worlds” name this website.

For those of you who don’t know what “Savage Worlds” is, it is a universal generic, role-playing game (Yes everyone, like “Dungeons and Dragons” in so much as you create characters and work together to create a story under the guidance of a game master. Did you not read my intro to gaming interview with Steve Kenson?) written by Shane Lacy Hensley, and published by Great White Games doing business as Pinnacle Entertainment Group. I don’t know who is responsible for this, but the simple fact is that the “Savage Worlds” folks know how to name things in a way that compells you to at least pick up one of their books, and as is the case in the Elson household, to buy said books.

Let’s first start with the name of their generic base game system “Savage Worlds”. What a fan-freakin-tastic name for a game! Seriously, you see a book with the words “Savage Worlds” on the spine, how do you not pick that up? Take a moment, reflect on that title. Say it out loud. Feel that tingle running down your spine? That’s what I’m talking about here.

However, that’s just the name of the generic rules system. The titles for books that use that system are equally admirable.

“The Savage World of Solomon Kane” – All the bad ass of Solomon Kane, now with the word “savage”. Enough said.

“Slipstream” – A perfect name for a pulp science fiction setting ala Buck Rogers or Flash Gordon.

“Sundered Skies!” – Damn right exclamation point. That exclamation point takes an appropriate title for a dark fantasy setting featuring a thousand floating islands and turns it up to eleven. It’s the “Spinal Tap” of game titles. (Because I made the eleven joke. Dial goes up to eleven. Get it now? Why am I talking to you?)

“Pirates of the Spanish Main” – Perhaps you didn’t read that right. I said, Pirates. of the. Spanish. Main. It’s Pirates of the Spanish Main for God’s sake! When what a thing is, is out right cool, you name it what it is. For instance, my stuffed schnauzer doll is inherently cool, thusly, I named it Schnauz. Yes, my schnauzer doll is inherently cool, occassionally I call him Schnauz Prime, and no, I do not want your opinion on the subject.

“Low Life: Rise of the Lowly” – If you saw that at your local game store how could you not think, what the heck is that, and pick it up? Sure the world is filled with descendants of cockroaches, worms, snack cakes, and stranded aliens, and that may not be your cup of tea. However, that title managed to get me, or my husband, or sometimes both of us, to pick up that book and check it out every time we visited Zombie Planet until we quit fighting the inevitable and just bought it.

“50 Fathoms” – Again, how do you resist looking at a game book titled “50 Fathoms”? From a company of sweet titles, this one definitely stands out. Just think about it, “50 Fathoms”. It’s simple, it’s moody, it says, Gamer, you WILL read my back cover.

“Necessary Evil” – For the record, my favorite title for any game book ever. All the super heroes in the world are destroyed by an alien invasion leaving the protection of earth in the hands of the super villains left behind. I love the concept and the name is PERFECT.

“Rippers” – Oh “Rippers”, what a fantastic title you are. “The Cabal of evil formed under the leadership of the monstrous Jack the Ripper has the Victorian world on its knees and it’s up to you to fight back.” Again, great name for a great concept.

“Deadlands: Reloaded” – Heck, they even managed to take an already established and cool title, “Deadlands”, and make it extra cool when translating it for the “Savage Worlds” system! “Deadlands” is cool, “Deadlands: Reloaded” is legendary. (I feel I missed a Barney Stinson joke there.)

I feel my point is made, the “Savage Worlds” guys know how to name things. And so there you have it, an opportunity missed. I like to think that “The Magical Buffet” is a solid name, but I suspect if put in the hands of the “Savage Worlds” team it would have had a better name, one that would translate directly to “Wil Wheaton wrote about my website in his blog and thusly crashed our server.” Or perhaps “Rebecca will now be the new commentator on the television show ‘BattleBots’, oh crap that show was cancelled, never mind.” Perhaps one day, if I’m lucky, the “Savage Worlds” team will come up with an honorary, suitably bad ass sounding nickname for the website. Until then, I’ll pine away for the name that might have been.