Jump to content

Naming themes of rockets?


Recommended Posts

So, I have this small problem of what theme I should use for my rockets?


My themes of the last game:

Manned: Aztec gods (not a good idea, quite long names like Quetzalcoatl or Huitzilopotchli)

Unmanned: Lakes

Relay System: Indian tribe names

Exploration: Officers of World War 2

Testing: Gemstones


Any ideas for my new vessels?



New Naming scheme:


Manned: Greek gods (Gaia: mother of all flights, Artemis: God of the moon)

Unmanned: officers of ww2 (Nimitz, Eisenhower you name it)

Relay systems: Capital cities (Ottawa, Bogata etc)

Exploration: Famous writer (Verne cant wait to go to Jool with it!, Tolstoy etc) 

Test vechiles: Disasters (Hindenburg, titanic etc)

Refueling Station: Germanic Gods (Odin, Frea etc)

Space Station: Norse gods (Loki, Thor etc)

Planes: Bird of prey (eagle, condor etc)

Tourism: Names of 'our' planets (Mercucry, Neptune, Mars etc)

Edited by ToukieToucan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't have a real theme. I assign reporting names based on several factors
- shape, Turtle for a medium surface miner
- usage, Eagle's nest an orbital station that supports the Eagle ships
- design name/acronym, Cisto for Crew transport, Surface To Orbit 
- extension of above, Eagle for the transporter of Turtles, since they grab turtles in their talons and carry them away.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I tend to be a little biased in my naming themes.  For a while I had the Tereshkova, the Dunwoody, and the Howard (though I hadn't used the name Earhart yet).  Then I launched the Athena and the Aphrodite going in that direction for a while.  I've got a Tyson Munar Lander out there because, well, yeah.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use the dullest names for rockets, starting with Untitled Spacecraft - kinda every early career vessel gets it that goes obsolete after one launch. Than comes Munar Flyby and Munar Lander, Rescue-2, Rescue-4, Eve Probe, Duna Probe, etc. Anything that makes me instantly recognise them on the map.

Though my beautiful planes and memorable constructions get names of animals they resemble - either by look or function.

Or I just name them after something silly or inappropriate.

Edited by Evanitis
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My original launch program was aptly named ICARUS (for some reason I use caps for "programs" with a set mission in mind when I'm building, and initial caps for just general purpose vessels.)

Some I just name based on what they look like. My current lift platform is the "Warthog Mk III" because it's brutish and ugly (in both form and function).

My manned rescue vehicles are named after knights - Paladin, Crusader, Templar, etc.

Unmanned rescue vessels are named after orders of Angels - Seraphim, Ophanim, Malakim, Archangel, etc.

I've had several jets and SSTOs named BANSHEE for setting speed records.

Mk 2 SSTOs and rockets usually get named after swords (current program named "Arondight")

Most of my larger SSTOs are named after large birds. (Roc, Heron, Anhinga, Condor, etc)

Rovers are generally named after dogs/canines. (Mun rovers are "Mundog Mk II", my beast of a Duna rover was named "BARGHEST")

Space stations generally drawn from Norse mythology (Thor, Loki, Odin, Heimdall, Yggdrasil) or based on their orbits ("Dawn" was in low orbit, "Umbra" was way, way out, etc).

Refueling ships/depots generally bovine (Holstein, Gurnsey, etc) though they are derivatives of the original MAMABIRD orbital fuel depot program (so ships to establish or refuel depots are called MAMABIRD and the actual stations are cow names).

Ships for deploying mapping sats generally are in my "Aurora" line (polar orbits and all) and the sats themselves are given Prophet/Seer names (Oracle, Gypsy...though I have several varieties of "NavBee" drone mapping SSTOs).

My original Duna program was WANDERER, which still cracks me up because the first "successful" mission ended up on Eve when mission control screwed up meters/sec and ft/sec.

Never given it much thought until now, but I have a lot of rules for this. :D

EDIT: I forgot that I'm a big fan of acronym soup, as well...so most have some kind of nomenclature attached to tell me what the function is: "SERAPHIM Mk IV HADSRV" (Heavy Automated Deep Space Rescue Vehicle) or "Anhinga Mk II SHVSSTO" (Super Heavy Vectored SSTO) or my "Warthog Mk II-B" and "Mk II-H" ("B" added MAOR BOOSTERS! "H" added a Hitchhiker module).


Edited by JoeNapalm
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm currently running up against the same wall as I prepare a mission report / S.A.V.E. game for fun.  I'm going to be doing a Kerbalized space-race so I'll have Kerbalized Vostok, Mercury, Gemini, Soyuz, Apollo and more.


Some names I've had that tend to stick from play through the playthrough:

Early Career mode rockets are the ATR (Altitude Test Rocket) Leapfrog, High Jump, Long Jump, Pole Vault - and so on.

Mun missions are the Munatic line.  (Sigmund Frued CSM, MAL-Volio (Munar Adventure Lander), Oedipus (complex) Lifter) - this tends to be my Apollo themed mission though I'm not sure if Munatic will me KASE (NASA-ish) or KOSMO (CCCP-ish) next time.

My Minmas Orbital station is almost always called Light House Station - because its the last safe harbor before the "deep end" of the solar system.

My Duna Missions are almost always "Project Vulcan" in honor of the god of fire and artifice - but mostly in honor of Star Trek since it feels appropriate that my first interplanetary mission have a Sci-Fi vibe.  (I'm pretty sure I'll want a Star Trek reference for KASE and a Star Wars reference for KOSMO... Project Tatooine doesn't sound as impressive though.)

I'm always tempted to name a mission to Jool "Verne" so it can become "Jool's Verne" - I've often got with literary figures for early ship designs.


I'm currently toying with names for my next play/report.

Mercury - Moho, QuickSilver, Hermes, Flash, Speedy

Red Stone - Red Brick, TooHot, Crossbow

Atlas - ???

Vostok - Eastern Wind, Orient, Sunset (My google skills lead me to believe Vostok translates as "East").

Gemini - Siblings, Janus, ...

Apollo / Soyuz - See above.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't use many rockets, but for SSTOs i like to use astronomical things, ex: Binary for my VTOL SSTO, and Constellation for my long range SSTOs

When i do use rockets, they are usually just Kerpollo I,II,III,IV so on and so on

My walkers are almost always designated with an animal name, except the first one, which was a proof of concept.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use Tarot cards of the Major Arcana, and group them based on main engine.

Swivel/Reliant: Magician I, II, II-B, III, IV, IV-B

Thud: Tower I, II

Skipper: Strength I, I-B, II-B

Mainsail: Chariot I, II, III, IV Heavy

Twin Boar: Heirophant I

Rhino: Empress I-B, II-B

Mammoth: Emperor I, II, III, IV Heavy

Vector: Death 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 (depends on number of clustered Vectors)

A "-B" means the addition of boosters. Increments in the number (I, II, III, IV) usually indicate increasing size/diameter of upper stages and thus size and fuel levels of the main stage. For example, a Strength I has a Justice US (Size-1 upper stage with Terrier) whereas a Strength II has a World US (Size-2 Poodle powered upper stage).

My upper/transfer stages are:

Spark: Hermit US (Uses the round-8; it's my current favourite lightweight probe launching upper/transfer stage)


Spark: Temperence (Using Size-1 fuel tanks - not used as often since the 1.0 aero changes and nerfing of the once-overpowered Spark)

Terrier: Justice US

Poodle: World US

Skipper: Strength US (Matches naming convention for launchers with the same engine)

Rhino: Empress US (One of my favourite "brute force" upper stages. Great for everything from big rovers to fuel tankers or station parts.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Found this site


If you click on birds youll get a bunch of birds, kind of handy.


I think my set up will be as following:

Manned: Stars used for navigation from east to west

Unmanned: Lakes

Relay: Indian Tribes

Exploration: WW2 officers

(refueling/space) Stations: Germanic/Norse Mythology

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I name my v.1 game rockets to names with the first letter in alphabetic order. This provide me with a sorted list. I try to come up with a name that I think I can easily associate with the rocket and its function. No theme in other ways. My current and last project is Orpheus. It is hoped that Orpheus will be able to descend down to Eve's surface and land. Then takeoff and ascend to orbit again. Orpheus currently seats 8 Kerbals.
Before that, there was Nomad, an interplanetary tug to move vessels & structures to other planets. Before that, Magma, a superlifter to put heavy things into Kerbin orbit. Before that, Lensman, a modern and very capable Mun/Minmus rocket, seating 8 and featuring two four-seat rovers. Before that, Kronos, a three seat, surface to surface and return, Alpine style (all in one push, no docking or refueling) 3-man Laythe rocket. Both the long journey times and the long time it took to develop suggested the name. Before that, Journeyman, an unmanned probe that reached Drus and Eeloo and returned. Before that, Ikaros, my 3-man, Alpine-style Duna-rocket. Before that, Helios, unmanned probe that reached Moho and returned. Before that Genesis, a project that got cancelled. Before that, Firebrand, 3-man Mun/Minmus rocket. Before that,...    ...memory becomes a bit foggy...

Next, is a new Duna rocket. Its name will start with a 'P'.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

With the Aztec gods theme I have a Company called Itzpapalotl. Which also benefits from being a badass name. Also I name space agencies after tiny English villages to reflect the level of professionalism and budget I achieve :D Chipping Norton Space Agency anyone? 

My ships sometimes have generic Russian sounding names with I II III IV designations. Or generally stupid plays on words like my heavy cargo plane being called the "Sporklift Truck".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All my craft have abbreviated names, such as the first rocket KARC-001 (Kerbal Aerospace Research Corps) and plane KAI-001 (Kerbal Aviation Industries). Unless if it is important, in which case the craft gets named the Kerbal 1 or something. Some even have mission scripts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, ToukieToucan said:

Found this site


If you click on birds youll get a bunch of birds, kind of handy.


This is perfect.  I'll be using this alot in my next play through.  I'm currently thinking of using the "Soviet Space Program" page subsection "Animals" for my KOSMO program names.  Possibly using Russian Royalty and or Battleship names for individual ships.

I'm considering a few options for KASE though I'm leaning to Scientist's Names for the project.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had a series of SSTO spaceplanes named for memes from "Idiocracy" (Brawndo Mk.2, Camacho XL, etc.). I had another named for obscure songs that were sampled in '80s hip-hop tracks (Peace Frog, Wind Walker II, etc).

 Sometimes I change the naming conventions just to see if anybody will catch the reference.

There are really no limits.


Edited by GoSlash27
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Im a traditionalist.. I use classes

In that when a design works well its foundations must be honoured and is so with each after that resembles the first in both function and hopefully achivements.. Another aspect is paying tribute to the lost class members that the then existing or new members of that class carry with them to a certain degree..


Ships..railway ..spacecraft

It all works.. They dont have to all be the same just be built upon the same ideas..even in real life sisterships or sistertrains differ from one another..


Stick to your names :) add a number prefix.. Use decal flag mod to paint it on the side.. Display it proudly!


Edit: LV-1R make good airhorns..modify one with a horn sound.. Sound it so it echos throughout the land as a warning for the kraken. A new gemstone class rocket just took to the skies.. G124... Glory or death!

Edited by Overland
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mostly uninteresting stuff like "Moon Lander" or "Duna Tug" but in my RP-0 save I started naming payloads after counties in Oregon: "Multonomah Relay", "Josephine Mars Orbiter", stuff like that (note that this started before the ... thing ... happened in Harney county...)

Edited by regex
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...