Gaming Confessions: Gamertag Origins

This week’s confession:  The origin and evolution of my Gamertag.

I felt that I needed to post this as I can’t count the number of times that people have asked me why I chose my name(mainly because I haven’t started counting and people don’t really ask)

My current Gamertag is Stigweird85 which in a rare example of organisation on my part is also my name on Twitter and Steam (feel free to add me/follow or more probably ignore me)

Some of you might make an educated guess that I have taken the moniker from the Clive King novel Stig of the Dump. As Roy Walker once said it’s good but it’s not right. It’s true that I keep my office space and my bedroom in states that give the impression that a tornado has visited recently and I do have the hair of a caveman but it’s not where I get my name from.

I take my name from my name. Confused?

When I was younger I was given one of those life affirming cards that takes your name and explains its origins and your apparent character traits. You usually see these cards in souvenir shops.  On this card it had Stewart was derived from Steward which is fairly obvious and not that interesting, however at the foot of the card was an alternative; Stigweird.

It suited me to the core and I immediately adopted it as my online persona. Over the years it has been modified and manipulated but I have always kept Stig. For a while I even adopted the mantle of “The Stig” but I got bored of people saying that I had stolen it or was just trying to be cool, no one ever listened when I said I’d been using Stig for several years before hand and had just added the “the” to it.

After shortening it, adding prefixes and suffixes to it. I decided it was time to return to the beginning and I returned to Stigweird.

When I was writing this article I was looking for some evidence to support my claim and on Wikipedia I found:

Stewart is a Scottish surname and is also used as a masculine given name of pre-7th century Old English origin, derived from stigeweard, the genitive prefix stige meaning “sty”, and the suffix weard meaning “guardian” or “warden

It may be that I have gotten it wrong all these years, or in the years since that card was made that the origin or the interpretation has been changed. Either way I don’t care; Stigweird is now and will be forever a large part in my life

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  • Brian Heitzenrater (FrehleyzComet)

    Haha. Nice read. I like your gamertag. It seems to fit you perfectly. 🙂

    As for mine, it was the name of Ace Frehley’s solo band after he left KISS. Ace is my favorite guitar player EVER! Frehleys Comet is how it’s originally spelled, but I threw in the z because I couldn’t use it with the s. So yeah, just like you, I use it for just about everything online now.

  • My extra interesting gamertag (PN MarkWithers) is what it is and can be explained by my experiences with my username(s) that I had with AOL. I was sick and tired of phoning their helpdesk and then either spelling out an embarrasing username or just being embarrassed by it, so when the Xbox launched and then Xbox Live I decided to simply use my name. The PN was added recently for Platform Nation – simples.

  • Unfortunately I didn’t really think ahead when I picked my gamertag. It was the first email address I had and thought at the time that xbox would be a phase. 6 years later and I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard “Female Alert- are you really female??” in the whiney voice of some 12 year old kid who disbelieves that girls can actually play the Xbox. And yes- I have had to phone the helpline on occassions and you can hear the smirk in the operators voice. I keep getting asked why I don’t just change it but guess I’ve just got used to it now and it is a bit of a talking point!