Annie Mitsoda, content designer at ArenaNet has just wrote a blog post about the process of naming things in Guild Wars 2. She indicated that names in Guild Wars 2 have their origins in many different sources — real-world lore, established game naming schemes, onomatopoeia, outside media etc.
One of the lore elements of the game that I find the most fascinating is the cultural evolution of charr names. In the original Guild Wars, the charr were brutish, savage zealots, and their names reflected this, echoing growls and roars – “Maim Deathrain” “Slaug Firehide” “Kaargoth Bloodclaw” and the like. 250 years later, the charr are the most technologically advanced race on Tyria, and their legions (though competitive as always) have fortified themselves into a far more organized and ranked force. Though the classic names are not wholly gone, most charr names have echoed this cultural change, drawing exhaustively from classic Roman influences – and not just classical names, such as Aestiva and Gracchus, but military sources as well! A ballista is a large siege weapon that was used by ancient Roman forces – but it’s also got a fantastic ring for a charr moniker.
If you are curious about how ArenaNet came up with the names that you will basically encounter in the game, this is an article worth reading. There’s also a little biology background for an ugly creature, the mullow at the end of the blog post.