Besides dungeon diving and fighting dragons, one of my favorite things to do in Skyrim is enchanting magic items. Don’t get me wrong — it’s really cool to loot a treasure chest and find a magic sword during the course of an adventure, but it’s so much cooler to actually make a magic sword. “Enchanting” is one of the eighteen skills a Skyrim player can advance throughout the game. I try to keep my character as balanced as possible, but I’m having so much fun making magic stuff that I’ve been working exclusively on my enchanting skill for the last several levels. I’m starting to get really good at it now, and have made some exceptional kick-butt weapons and armor. What I don’t keep for myself, I unload at the local blacksmith or merchant’s shop for some much needed coin. Let me tell you, enchanting and then flipping a magic warhammer for profit is lot better way to make a living then chopping wood or selling cabbages to some loser farmer
One aspect of enchanting magic items that shouldn’t be overlooked is the ability to name the item. I’m glad this game option is available, and for me the freedom of giving my newly crafted item a name makes Skyrim even more special. I find that naming my magic items helps to get me in the role playing spirit even more. True, if I’m simply enchanting an item for a quick sale I don’t bother with a name (the Riverwood Trader won’t dole out any more gold for a named item, so I don’t waste my time). However, for items I’m keeping or gifting to my followers, I always come up with a name. When choosing the perfect name these are the tips I follow:
- Use Variety. At last count, George Foreman, the ex-heavy weight boxing champ, named five of his sons “George.” Now this tells me that the champ either likes the name “George” a whole heck of a lot, or he was beatup side the head by Muhammad Ali one too many times. It has to get real confusing in the Foreman house with that many dudes named George, especially around the holidays. When you’re in the midst of fighting some nasty Falmer warriors, confusion is the last thing you want, and giving your magic items the same name is just asking for trouble. Unique names for each of your items is a boon when searching through your favorites list.
- Be Descriptive. Thankfully in Skyrim, there are a number of diverse magic items at your disposal — each with special enchantments . So not only is it a good idea to give your items unique names, it also makes sense that your items have names descriptive of their special enchantments. Believe me, after awhile you’re going to be lugging around a Skeever-load of magic items, and you’ll want to be able to differentiate one from another at a moment’s notice. For example, when I lay a fire enchantment on a weapon, I always like to use a fire related name (e.g., Galadorn’s Blade of Fire or Marrowblaze). Likewise, if I use a frost enchantment, I pick a name evocative of the ice and cold (e.g., The Ice Queen’s Blade or the Frozen Tundra Mace). Enchanted gloves that fortify block become Galadorn’s Gloves of Defense and enchanted armor that fortifies stamina becomes The Plate Mail of Hercules.
- Be Creative. Growing up, I used to play a lot of Dungeons & Dragons and I still play D&D whenever I get a chance. In a typical D&D campaign, most magic items are given a descriptive, yet perfectly bland name. If I had a gold piece for every “+1 sword” I found dungeon diving, I’d be a very rich man indeed (for any non-D&D players, a +1 sword grants the wielder a “+1” bonus to hit on a 20-sided die roll). A good Dungeon Master will try to jazz things up by foregoing the “+1” and giving a sword a descriptive, yet creative name (e.g., The Sword of Invincible Might, Orcrest’s Bane, etc.). Creativity can be used in naming magic items in Skyrim as well, and I believe that creativity helps the entire role playing experience. If I get stumped on coming up with something creative, often times I’ll turn to the internet for a handy-dandy fantasy name generator like the one found here.
- Have Fun. The whole point of playing Skyrim is to have fun, so don’t get too hung up on coming up with the perfect name. Don’t get too stressed or too serious. If you want to pick a goofy name or something just plain silly, go for it! As long as your magic item name is unique, descriptive, and creative you can’t fail. Now where did I put my Elvis Hunk Of Burning Love battle axe?’
So how about it? What are some of the creative names you’ve given to your Skyrim magic items?