The Precise Art of Naming Characters

So I’ve been playing a lot of Fallout Shelter, and as my vault dwellers produced offspring or I welcomed newcomers to the vault, I jumped on the opportunity to name or rename the characters. This was a perfect place for a budding author to practice the fine craft of naming characters in a meaningful way. I imagined factors like:

  • What is the character’s lineage and how much does that matter?
  • Does the character go by their first and last name, just one moniker, or a title?
  • Does the name roll off the tongue?
  • If from a foreign (or fabricated) language, how does the name reflect that language, and does it sound similar to their kin, or vastly different from foreigners?
  • Does the name sound like other words that evoke an intended reaction from the reader?
  • Should a name sound like someone famous, and if so, how much do you call that out?

With these and other questions in mind, I put a lot of thought into each of my dwellers’ names, forming (in my mind, at least) an elaborate society with subcultures, cliques, alliances and feuds. I’d like to share with you some of the names of my vault dwellers. Through these names alone, you can imagine the rich culture and backstory behind their interactions:

  • Amanbaby Barton
  • Andiamdone Phillips
  • Angle Taylor
  • Arsehole Taylor
  • Assalotta Taylor
  • Assface Smith
  • Asshat Richards
  • Assweepay Smith
  • Ballsballs Johnson

Although from the same family, Ballsballs and Bent remained adversaries their entire lives.

  • Bendover Smith
  • Bent Johnson
  • Billy Turner
  • Billyklub Taylor
  • Boner Simmons
  • Brian Adams
It took the combined efforts of the four crack engineers to maintain proper water pressure for the vault showers.

It took the combined efforts of the four crack engineers to maintain proper water pressure for the vault showers.

  • Brinksman Jones
  • Bullshit Richards
  • Butts Sutton
  • Buttstain Johnson
  • Copper Smith
  • Cyst Taylor
  • DammitRoy! Smith

Barely noticed in the background, DammitRoy! plotted his revenge against Dr. Gangrene for leaving him for Dr. Shithead. Administrator Demise and Dr. Steven remained unaware…until it was too late.

  • Demise Bush
  • Density Adams
  • Dick Peters
  • Dickballs Peters
  • Dickface Richards
  • Dickinthe Hand
  • Dickler Richards

If Susan, Dickler, and Asshat don’t shut that reactor down soon, the entire vault is doomed!

  • Dickless Jones
  • Dickstain Richards
  • Dikdikdik Richards
  • Dingus Sutton
  • Dipshit Peters
  • Dipshit Taylor
  • Dongducker Hart
  • Donger Taylor
  • Dookey King
  • Dorchestra Adams
  • Drunken Johnson
  • Evile Richards
  • Facekicker Jones
  • Fake-ass Peters
  • Fartface Richards
  • Farto Barton
  • Fuckface Jones
  • Fuckwit Peters
  • Giggity Jones
  • Hailshit Taylor

And really, I could list out the entire cast of Vault 401, but by now, I’m sure you can appreciate the rich, interconnected relationships that are represented through the simple use of careful naming.


If no one else can help, maybe you can hire… Happy April Fools.


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