In the magazine business, the Back Page is where you’ll find all the weird stupid stuff we can’t match anywhere else. Some may call it “filler”; we like “an entire page for making terrible jokes that are factually related to the content of the story”.
We don’t have pages on the internet, but we still love terrible jokes – so welcome to our semi-regular feature, Next page.
You know, when I was a little girl, monsters used to have logical names. Names like “Bowser” and “Ganon”, “Ridley” and “Sephiroth”. You know, interesting monosyllabic words, like Cher and Madonna. They are so memorable. Crispy. Sensitive. If Bowser has a last name, I don’t know, and I don’t want to.
These days, you’re less likely to get caught in a battle with Nemesis or Mother Brain, and more likely to face what’s known as Non-Relentless Discharge, a Dark souls the boss that I still Unbelievable exist. Please don’t name your terrible bosses after body fluids! It’s strange!!!
At the same time… I love it. I really do. I love the moment when I walk into a boss arena and the name comes up, and I find out that this giant animal I have to defeat has a name like GERALD THE NEVER-WED, DESTROYER OF SMORGASBORDS. It gives me a bit of a sensuality about the story. A bit of intrigue. I wanted to know more about Gerald, just as I wanted to put a sword in one of his eighteen faces. Why was he never married? Was it due to his inclination to destroy the lords? Is his fiancée a petty thief?? I need to know!
The latest game uses this, shall we say, Tolkienesque’s approach to naming its monsters. Xenoblade Chronicles 3, which – for the record – I haven’t played yet, as I discussed in the video above with one of our video chats, Zion. But I yes I’ve seen a list of what the game calls “Unique Monsters”, and I have to say, it might actually be what keeps me playing the game.
Here’s what I can tell about Xenoblade Chronicles 3 from… exciting naming conventions:
You’ve probably heard the word “petrichor,” the name for the smell of earth after rain. But have you heard of… petrivore? It’s a combination of the Greek, “petra”, which means rock, and “vorare” in Latin, to eat. Judomar loves to eat ice. That is the defining quality of Judomar. Apparently, he’s a dinosaur guy, with a big mouth to cry out. And you know what they say: You have to work with what your mother gave you, and in this case, a big mouth to chew on. Be happy, Judomar.
This totally sounds like a mildly aggressive but passive nickname used in the teacher’s lounge to describe a girl who talks a lot in their class. And is that a normal name? TO TRY ON? I love that there are monsters out there called TRACY, like they were born in the 1970s. Sharpwitted Tracy used to have too many bracelets and too many bracelets. Now she is running a PR agency.
I looked up what an unobtrusive Liggy was, and it was a spider. I love it. In general, spiders are pretty inconspicuous – they build tiny webs in corners and usually try to stay away, unless they’re stuck in a tub. However. I cannot forgive the writing and/or localization team for naming a spider-man character “Liggy”. Likes “long legs”. Because it’s a spider. Come on you.
I don’t believe this is a monster. This is an Italian scooter.
Jingoism is Not an adjective that I thought I would never see in a JRPG! I often hear it almost entirely in the context of Brexit, as it means “nationalism marked by an aggressive foreign policy”, and while I’m not into politics here (( this is a silly article about monsters, man), it’s rather unusual in a way that makes me want to know than.
Gigantus actually has an image on the Xenoblade wiki and he is a cross between a gorilla and a large orange baboon. I don’t know what he was even joking about. Does he run a country? Does he have a foreign policy? Why know that he is extremely patriotic while fighting him? Honestly, I can’t wait to find out.
(Additional note: Apparently Jingoistic Gigantus and Territorial Rotbart are the same enemies. Maybe they just ran a thesaurus for the word “territory”?)
Kilocorn Grandeps raises an important question: Does he have 1,000 horns, like unicorns have one horn? Or is he just really bragging about how much corn he has? Probably before. But I hope for the latter.
We all have dreams. The budding Francis dreams of one day becoming a real Franciscan. He probably won’t be, since your mission is to kill him. So sad.
They named a monster Xenoblade after … a Roman poet in the first century BC. Sure, why not. No one would notice if your two kids were named Tracy and Catullus, right?
Catullus – real people, not monsters – is famous for his poetry, much of which concerns his extreme obsession with his married girlfriend. He also occasionally writes about other topics, like cool boats, or how much he basically hates people being mean about his poems. To be fair, that man was “sensitive”.
I can’t legally imagine a monster with this name.
Ron is hoarse
This sounds like the stage name of a weird clown your uncle gave your birthday party. He reeks of cigarettes and divorces.
Have you watched Grand Designs? It’s a show in which a kind, exhausted man named Kevin McCloud goes to meet a couple who are embarking on a massive, over-targeted housing project, like “what will happen next?” out if a house is in a mountain” or “we’ll build a three-villa with nothing but bottles”. Kevin said “this is a stupid idea.” Then he visited them a year or two later, only to find that their house was still a pile of mud. Then he said, “I told you so.”
Anyway, I’m imagining that the Househunter Carly fight is like that, except you play as Kevin McCloud, and you have to defeat her by convincing her that £1,000 isn’t enough to equip back to the kitchen.
Gombaba is discreet
Gombaba is not a monster as much as a friend who cannot be trusted to keep a secret. Don’t tell Indiscreet Gombaba anything, because the first thing they will do is tell the person their secret. This boss battle, I imagine, is just talking to Gombaba with a drink and not giving them not at all engaging information, instead keeping the conversation on safe topics like weather and sports. Terrible boredom.
Name your own stupid Xenoblade monster
Blow up your D20, roll it twice, here’s your Xenoblade Chronicles monster:
|Numbers||A roll||Scroll two|
|7||Not paying taxes||Splunch|
|15||Free to play||Gascoigne|
Apparently, all Xenoblade games are like this. Other monsters include, and I didn’t make this, “Flabbergasted Jerome” and “Musical Vanflare,” which sounds like a fancy term for a really loud car. You could be forgiven for thinking that “Mysterious Barnaby”, “Unreliable Rezno” and “Final Marcus” were all Beatles B songs written by Ringo, and you should see your doctor if you’ve ever experienced “Soothed” Aglovale”, lest it turn into “Conflagrant Raxeal”, or worse, “Peeling Kircheis”.
You know, I could have played Xenoblade Chronicles a long time ago if that meant I could go see anyone named Plump Sprahda. Just say.