Metroid’s Samus Aran Was Named For Pelé Possibly, We Think

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Written By Chris Azzopardi

Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the man we call Pelé, is just the type of person to have lots of things named after him. That even means things that don’t look like they’re named after him at all, like the heroes of 8-bit Nintendo games.

The hero of Metroid is named Samus Aran. According to an interview posted on Kotaku, Samus’ name was inspired by Pelé:

“Even the name of the protagonist could be put together in this manner, and if I wanted to give someone a strange name, I could refer to Pelé’s name,” he joked.

“Kiyotake, If you check if Pelé’s real name was ‘Samus Arantes,’ that’s a little incorrect,” Sakamoto joked back. “He’s called ‘Something’ Arantes Nascimento, and only ‘Aran’ matches. (Laughs)”.

Clearly, there’s something lost in translation here. Or, our geek cred has been found wanting. The Metroid guys seem to be saying that they couldn’t remember Pelé’s real first name or something, so they went with a bastardized form of “something.” Right?

Then, instead of using “Arantes” in its full form, they chopped off the “tes” for unknown reasons. And one of the big twists in the Metroid series was the revelation that Samus was actually a girl (imagine if that reveal was Pele! Or… maybe it’s better to not). Either way, it seems possible that the main character of one of the 80′s most iconic video games titles is a girl named after the world’s most famous soccer player.

So add that to the list of things named after Pelé, possibly, but if it’s not then don’t.

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