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Tim Schafer

Writing Update#4: Potential Reds Names Incoming! (Edit: Broken Age wins!)

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I feel like a lot of the names suggested so far lack a sense of hope. Coming of age tales do evoke fear but they also evoke a time filled with excitement and wonder. They are a kind of a nervous adventure where the protagonist realizes that the things they want are also the things they fear.

Names like "The Cut" or "The Divide", while being good names, give me a sense of division whereas I feel a perfect name would capture the feeling of unification in the protagonist combating his/her fears to achieve personal growth and in the coming together of the boy and girl whose stories are intertwined.

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A pun is a play on words that relies on words that have multiple meanings, or two similar sounding words with different meanings... so it is supposed to be a pun, there's no getting away from that :) I don't think puns are inherently bad though, I'm just not personally fond of this one; I think it sounds a bit wrong. I think it's good to be taking different approaches, too, so I'm not trying to discourage that. But I don't think people are intentionally coming up with mopey titles, I just think that most titles sound either over-mopey or over-silly until the right balance is found :)

Fair enough.

I've been thinking of some others too, what do you think of:

Life by Misadventure

Haha, I just want to point out that I don't consider myself the self-appointed name-judger here, it's just that I have some free time at this second so I'm posting a lot :)

Still, I prefer that title, but it's a bit long, and I tend to not like titles of more than a few syllables unless they've got a good rhythm to it. Like how 'Day of the Tentacle' has that kind of 6/4 'diddy-diddly' rhythm. I don't think "Life by Misadventure" rolls off the tongue. I'd like "Misadventures" on its own, but that seems a little on-the-nose because it's an adventure game.

I know and I'm in the same situation ;)

It is supposed to be a twist of the phrase "Death by Misadventure" which is usually used to describe, in law, someone who has died by accident. Funny you should mention the syllables thing because in my head it is said in the exact same way as Day of the Tentacle.

Yeah, I get it. I prefer it as a pun, but don't like it as much for the way it sounds.

As for those syllables:

Day of the Tentacle = DAY of the TENtacle (DAH-dah-dah DAH-dah-dah)

Death of a Salesman = DEATH of a SALESman (DAH-dah-dah DAAAH-dah)

Life by Misadventure = LIFE by misadVENture (DAH dah dah-dah-DAAAH-dah)

Can you see how the first two have that galloping rhythm while the third one is more than stop-start? It's not a major point but I think the best long titles have a kind of rhythm to them. Even 'Double Fine Adventure' has a kind of rhythm to it:

Double Fine Adventure (DAHdah DAH dah DAAAH-dah) which is almost like

Shave and a Haircut (DAAAH DAH dah DAAAH-dah)

Anyway, enough rhythm navel gazing from me (for now) ;)

EDIT: Actually, come to think of it, I'm wrong. Life by Misadventure sounds similar in rhythm to Double Fine Adventure. It's more musical than I thought. But for some reason it didn't connect with me. I don't mind it though.

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I suggested the most possible short but fitting title 'Two'

What would you call the sequel? Two 2?

Two: The Second

Two: Revengence

Two 2: Electric Boogaloo

Two: Reloaded

Two: Revolutions

Two 2: Count Harder

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A pun is a play on words that relies on words that have multiple meanings, or two similar sounding words with different meanings... so it is supposed to be a pun, there's no getting away from that :) I don't think puns are inherently bad though, I'm just not personally fond of this one; I think it sounds a bit wrong. I think it's good to be taking different approaches, too, so I'm not trying to discourage that. But I don't think people are intentionally coming up with mopey titles, I just think that most titles sound either over-mopey or over-silly until the right balance is found :)

Fair enough.

I've been thinking of some others too, what do you think of:

Life by Misadventure

Haha, I just want to point out that I don't consider myself the self-appointed name-judger here, it's just that I have some free time at this second so I'm posting a lot :)

Still, I prefer that title, but it's a bit long, and I tend to not like titles of more than a few syllables unless they've got a good rhythm to it. Like how 'Day of the Tentacle' has that kind of 6/4 'diddy-diddly' rhythm. I don't think "Life by Misadventure" rolls off the tongue. I'd like "Misadventures" on its own, but that seems a little on-the-nose because it's an adventure game.

I know and I'm in the same situation ;)

It is supposed to be a twist of the phrase "Death by Misadventure" which is usually used to describe, in law, someone who has died by accident. Funny you should mention the syllables thing because in my head it is said in the exact same way as Day of the Tentacle.

Yeah, I get it. I prefer it as a pun, but don't like it as much for the way it sounds.

As for those syllables:

Day of the Tentacle = DAY of the TENtacle (DAH-dah-dah DAH-dah-dah)

Death of a Salesman = DEATH of a SALESman (DAH-dah-dah DAAAH-dah)

Life by Misadventure = LIFE by misadVENture (DAH dah dah-dah-DAAAH-dah)

Can you see how the first two have that galloping rhythm while the third one is more than stop-start? It's not a major point but I think the best long titles have a kind of rhythm to them. Even 'Double Fine Adventure' has a kind of rhythm to it:

Double Fine Adventure (DAHdah DAH dah DAAAH-dah) which is almost like

Shave and a Haircut (DAAAH DAH dah DAAAH-dah)

Anyway, enough rhythm navel gazing from me (for now) ;)

EDIT: Actually, come to think of it, I'm wrong. Life by Misadventure sounds similar in rhythm to Double Fine Adventure. It's more musical than I thought. But for some reason it didn't connect with me. I don't mind it though.

;)

One final mashup of the two before I go and get on with what I'm supposed to be doing.

Two Be Determined By Misadventure

I think this is too long though.

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The more I think about it, the more I'm starting to realize that it is almost impossible for us to judge these game titles. I always try to imagine how the title would look on the box cover, which - I assume - will be based on Tim's brilliant concept art:

art10_01.jpg

Seeing a title like "Small Offerings" or "Monsters' Cradle" (from the first poll) in combination with this illustration - for me - would indicate that the game probably is a "black comedy" at heart, reminding me a little bit of The Cave.

"The Divide" and "Worlds Apart" would draw attention to the wall between the boy and girl sitting back to back to each other. I would assume that this rift is central to the game's narrative. "Broken Age" covers both (which is why I've voted for this option), but that doesn't necessarily make it the best title. It all depends on what Tim wants to emphasize as central theme.

All in all this discussion made me realize what an absolute gem the title "Grim Fandango" is, alluding to both the world, theme and story.

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I suggested the most possible short but fitting title 'Two'

What would you call the sequel? Two 2?

Two: The Second

Two: Revengence

Two 2: Electric Boogaloo

Two: Reloaded

Two: Revolutions

Two 2: Count Harder

Two 2: Double Two

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Sorry but I can't vote for any of the shortlisted titles - even the jokingly nominated "none of the above" does still sound better.

And the rest of proposed ones kinda try too hard I think - most are effortlessly matched by the Random Title Generator - what, you think I'm kidding? See for yourself: "Sharp Worlds" / "The Stars's Healer" / "Only Child" / "The Voyages of the Boyfriend" (lol!) and so on...

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We have two amazing lives that are completely disconnected and alien from one another. Yet at the very heart, these lives share the same story. I propose the title:

Twin Tales

Simple yet catchy!

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I voted for "World's Apart". I hope that apostrophe really is part of the name because it makes a world of a difference.

Times have changed (at least here), they are expected to grow up faster these days.

Sure, maybe. But that doesn't mean that they do. I don't mean any disrespect to children, teenagers or whatever. I was considered very mature for my age. I just think that a big part of growing up is in coming to terms with the fact that it's not really something that ever really stops. And that's a realisation that I think has to happen a bit later.

Personally I think I grew up the most when I realised that I'm just as playful, silly, and have the capacity to be just as curious about the world as I was when I was a child, and that there's never going to be the serious, adult version of me I had in my head. Just a more experienced version of the child who has learned ways of dealing with the world.

Finally someone who shares my view of what it means to become an adult. *high five*

The older I become, the more I realise that adults are just older and more experienced children. I grew up believing that adults knew everything about how the world worked and that they knew how to do practically everything. However, now that I, myself, am older and spend more time around people my own age or older, I see that people don't know as much as I once believed and they all have things they are unsure/uncertain about and their own worries.

Additionally, it saddens me when other adults deny someone a playful heart with their reason being "that's not how an adult should act" or with the question "aren't you too old for that?".

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My submission is The Divide. Hope this helps or creates some inspiration. All in all I want this game to have a fitting title. Good luck Tim!

They Divide by Zero

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I like title/word gens for having some fun or getting some inspiration, The Absence of the French Kiss, Cracked Rainbows, The Education of Dracula, House of Shoes, Flowers in the Void, No Nap Time for Ostriches, ...

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I suggested the most possible short but fitting title 'Two'

What would you call the sequel? Two 2?

Two: The Second

Two: Revengence

Two: The Reckoning

Two: Be Determined

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Thanks for all the input, backers!

You guys really seem to like World's Apart. Like really, really. But like I said, I don't know if I can deal with that one since it's been used so many times in so many ways. The second most popular is Broken Age (#1 in the first poll) and that was a suggestion by Lee Petty, and I do like it be cause it stands for many things: the broken society in which they live, and the awkward age of the protagonists, and how they are breaking free of tradition.

Naming something like this after it's already been in production a while is very hard because you have had so much time to get used to it under another name, or no name. And doing it in public is a new and unique experience to be sure! People talk about a "Grim Fandango" moment, but let me tell you, the first person I told that name to said, "I hate it." A lot of people did. But I got it in there early so it had time to grow on people. If I had called that game "The Last Fiesta" for a year, and then switched it to "Grim Fandango" people would have thought I was nuts. So who knows.

There's always that feeling that the perfect name is right out there, just out of reach. And it's impossible to know if that's just an illusion. But the only way I can think of to test it out is to call the game "Broken Age" for a while. After two or three months, one of two things will happen: Either that other, amazing, perfect name will show up and we'll all know it, or it will feel like Broken Age was the name of the game forever, and there never was another possibility.

So I'm going to try that for a while. Who knows? In two months it could totally change. But you all definitely helped me figure some stuff out. And you also reminded me how much I disliked the band "Saga." :)

Thanks, Backers!

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Thanks for all the input, backers!

You guys really seem to like World's Apart. Like really, really. But like I said, I don't know if I can deal with that one since it's been used so many times in so many ways. The second most popular is Broken Age (#1 in the first poll) and that was a suggestion by Lee Petty, and I do like it be cause it stands for many things: the broken society in which they live, and the awkward age of the protagonists, and how they are breaking free of tradition.

Naming something like this after it's already been in production a while is very hard because you have had so much time to get used to it under another name, or no name. And doing it in public is a new and unique experience to be sure! People talk about a "Grim Fandango" moment, but let me tell you, the first person I told that name to said, "I hate it." A lot of people did. But I got it in there early so it had time to grow on people. If I had called that game "The Last Fiesta" for a year, and then switched it to "Grim Fandango" people would have thought I was nuts. So who knows.

There's always that feeling that the perfect name is right out there, just out of reach. And it's impossible to know if that's just an illusion. But the only way I can think of to test it out is to call the game "Broken Age" for a while. After two or three months, one of two things will happen: Either that other, amazing, perfect name will show up and we'll all know it, or it will feel like Broken Age was the name of the game forever, and there never was another possibility.

So I'm going to try that for a while. Who knows? In two months it could totally change. But you all definitely helped me figure some stuff out. And you also reminded me how much I disliked the band "Saga." :)

Thanks, Backers!

Hi Tim,

Though I do not like Broken age very much (no ned to explain), I agree with your thoughts. I also think that you should make up a title as you have the whole picture from the begining, and you know all the big and small things of the game. Best titles could come from both of them. Usually you find the best in the small things which are initially neglected due to their size.

Anyway, the reason I make this post is because I would like to ask if you can you provide us with the actual results of the 2nd voting? That is how much votes each title got?

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Thanks, Backers!

Thanks for letting us get involved Tim. Hope you're happy with whatever it does end up being :]

Much love for Divide

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There's always that feeling that the perfect name is right out there, just out of reach. And it's impossible to know if that's just an illusion. But the only way I can think of to test it out is to call the game "Broken Age" for a while. After two or three months, one of two things will happen: Either that other, amazing, perfect name will show up and we'll all know it, or it will feel like Broken Age was the name of the game forever, and there never was another possibility.

Aw, my least favorite. That's ok, I'm sure I'll get used to it. Like Nintendo Wii.

For some reason "Reds" even sounds appropriate. Sort of the magic of the naming process. Whatever name is picked, it'll probably sink into place after a little while.

Still want an epiphany though.

And you're welcome, Tim! It's a whole lotta fun to be included in this process.

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blabla Fiesta = Ford Fiesta

blabla Age = Age of Empires/Mythology, Dragon Age, Ages of Myst, Age of Wonders, ®age (kidding), i guess if you consult the internet there are tons of games with an Age.

But i like the idea to go with one name and if something better shows up - whoops - exchanging it.

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I would like to ask if you can you provide us with the actual results of the 2nd voting? That is how much votes each title got?

Sure!

Like I said, you REALLY liked Worlds Apart. :)

I didn't really research that name until it did so well in the polls. That's when I found all the previous uses that invalidated that name in my eyes.

Broken Age!

reds poll.jpg

578d00345b62f_redspoll.jpg.0b83a470105e3

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I would like to ask if you can you provide us with the actual results of the 2nd voting? That is how much votes each title got?

Sure!

Like I said, you REALLY liked Worlds Apart. :)

I didn't really research that name until it did so well in the polls. That's when I found all the previous uses that invalidated that name in my eyes.

Broken Age!

Now I can't help but wonder what all the Worlds Apart voters would pick if they had to choose something else.

Thanks for the results Tim, I was curious too.

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Broken Age sounds more like a historical game or a strategy/rpg game. Already it kind of makes me think Rock of Ages.

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Now I can't help but wonder what all the Worlds Apart voters would pick if they had to choose something else.

I picked worlds apart because I thought of the choices it was best. If it wasn't on the list I would have picked small offerings.

I'm sure when the next DoubleFine Adventure (documentary) episode comes out the story behind Broken Age will make it much more compelling than just words on a forum.

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Broken Age sounds too much like Broken Sword, in my opinion - and seeing as Broken Sword 5 is on the way and will probably be released around the same time as Double Fine Adventure, this seems like a poor choice for a name.

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I would like to ask if you can you provide us with the actual results of the 2nd voting? That is how much votes each title got?

Sure!

Like I said, you REALLY liked Worlds Apart. :)

I didn't really research that name until it did so well in the polls. That's when I found all the previous uses that invalidated that name in my eyes.

Broken Age!

Now I can't help but wonder what all the Worlds Apart voters would pick if they had to choose something else.

Thanks for the results Tim, I was curious too.

I'd be interested in this too. I'm happy enough to take Broken Age out for a spin, but it was pretty close between the other three. Broken Age is definitely growing on me with Tim's explanation of it. I think it sounds the best out of them all, but I just couldn't quite get with the Age wordplay.

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