Here are my 5 favorite video game-inspired baby names:
- Mario, the name of the heroic Italian plumber who is currently the mascot of Nintendo. He was named for Mario Segale, a former landlord of the Nintendo company.
Popularity: Mario has ranked among the 1,000 most popular baby names in the U.S. since the early 1900s.
- Zelda, the name of the princess in the Legend of Zelda series. Her name was inspired by Zelda Fitzgerald, wife of writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. (Did you know that Robin Williams has a daughter named after Zelda?)
Popularity: Zelda was in the top 1,000 from the 1880s through 1967.
- Carmen, from the educational Carmen Sandiego computer games. Her name was chosen because game creators thought it was exotic-sounding, but still easy to pronounce.
Popularity: Carmen has been in the top 1,000 nearly every year since baby name data was first collected (in 1880).
- Alex, the name of the main character in the Alex Kidd game series. He was the mascot of Sega until Sonic the Hedgehog replaced him.
Popularity: Alex has ranked in the top 1,000 every year since 1880.
- Lara, the name of archaeologist Lara Croft, heroine of Tomb Raider. Her name was originally Laura, but it was changed because creators thought ‘Lara’ would appeal more to an American audience.
Popularity: Lara has been in the top 1,000 since 1966.
Honorable mention goes to Ryu, the Street Fighter character whose name is Japanese for “dragon.”
P.S. Here’s a more recent post about distinctive video game baby names that are actually being given to babies nowadays.