Something About A Fall
The inspiration for Fahrfall is a game called DOWNFALL. That is a cool name for a cool game! But this is a different game, and a different game needs a different name! Any name involving "Goes Down" is out for similar reasons -- see the Prologue entry of this blog if you need a reminder as to why.
Still, the premise of the game is falling. In fact, I originally used "falling" as a working title. But "falling" just didn't seem to have the right ring to it.
That Sure Is A Long Fall
I brainstormed for a while for a theme, and kept coming back to ideas about falling a long way. I started to settle on "farfall", which seemed like a reasonable choice. I Googled a bit, and found enough references to suggest that "farfall" has a certain lack of uniqueness. In any case, it just wasn't turning me on.
Meine Deutsche Ist Nicht Gut
At some point, it occured to me that "far" sounds a bit like the German "fahr". A vague memory from an old Volkswagen commercial suggested to me that "fahr" might relate to driving, and a hunch suggested to me that "fall" might have a similar meaning in German as it does in English. German is notorious for its compound words, so I thought this might be a way to make something with at least a tenuous connection to a reasonable meaning but that retains some uniqueness.
I Googled a bit for "fahrfall" and some likely(?) German variations like "fahrenfall", "fahrfallen", "fahrenfallen", etc. I ran into a few references, but nothing that seemed to have a consistent meaning -- it seemed like "fahrfall" might be used a bit like slang, with various links to roads, driving, running, falling, etc. I pinged some native Germans and they more-or-less agreed with my interpretation -- one called it a "Denglish" word, which I suppose is the German equivalent to "Spanglish". :-)
A Name Is Born
So, "Fahrfall" doesn't really mean anything. Yet, it invokes a relationship to "driving" and "falling" (and maybe a few other things). Since the premise of the game is to control (i.e. drive) a fall, the name seems appropriate to me.