Metal Slug has a reference to one of the bosses in R-Type. Just look at the similarity between the stage 5 boss from Metal Slug 7 and the stage 4 boss of the original R-Type here◊ (the cores are highlighted for your convenience). The ending of Metal Slug X resembles the ending of Independence Day.
It also has one to In The Hunt by the same developers - The Slug Mariner has the exact same color scheme as the Granvia.
Boktai is stuffed with references to Westerns, most commonly Spaghetti Westerns. The main characters are named Django (after the protagonist of the Django movies, played by Franco Nero) and Sabata (after the protagonist of The Sabata Trilogy, played by Lee Van Clef). Django kills vampires by getting them into the sunlight - to do this, he has to drag their coffins, which they sleep in, outside, referencing how the Django from the movie carries a Gatling gun in a coffin he drags along behind him. In Boktai 2, at a certain point, you encounter a character who is obviously Solid Snake, but it's actually a duel Shout Out - he declines to identify himself, instead calling himself a "man with no name", a Shout Out to Clint Eastwood's character from the Dollars Trilogy (which is nonetheless in character for Snake). To further the reference, he's dressed with no bandanna, but with combed-back hair, a dark blue shirt, and tight brown jeans, the same outfit worn by the Man With No Name in The Good The Bad And The Ugly during the scene where Tuco tries to hang him in the hotel room.
Viewtiful Joe is full of Shout Outs, not only to Kamen Rider (an obviously huge influence), but to various other media (the game takes place in the world of films), including Devil May Cry, which was also created by director Hideki Kamiya.
Lets face it, the games are practically a love letter of Shout Outs, there are so many different references, it's fun trying to find them all, a favorite being the Star Wars reference and plot point in the last level.
Baldur's Gate 2: Shadows of Amn and the Expansion set "Throne of Bhaal" contain a few shout-out to former fans/forum members, including the character of Lanfear (which is arguably a 2nd. degree "Wheel of Time" shout-out) in Shadows of Amn, and Draconis, Yakman and Gromnir in Throne of Bhaal (Gromnir's speech in-game also emulates the poster's style)
Baldur's Gate itself has a set of more low-key shout-outs, with the spider-queen Centeol being a mocking shout-out at a player in the game writer's old Dungeons & Dragons campaign who exclusively played tall, strikingly-beautiful amazons names Centeol. Edwin was a much better-liked character from the same gaming group.
In Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer you can find an item named the Astral Rodent Charm. With the inscription "To M..." on the back. A shout out to Minsc and his miniature giant space hamster.
A Dance With Rogues, a fan module series, includes the premade character Lyanna Stormborn, as a Shout Out to A Song of Ice and Fire (which actually did inspire a lot of the story). The player's adventures seem somewhat similar to those of Arya Stark, after all...
In Icewind Dale 2, there's a bunch of mercenaries in the starting town (Targos) you can strike a conversation with. They go on to gripe about all sorts of menial tasks they had to do to "prove their prowess", the tasks in question being the very same you face at Candlekeep, the starting town (and tutorial level) of Baldur's Gate, an earlier Infinity Engine RPG. (Involving, at least, clearing rats out of a warehouse and fighting illusionary monsters.) The "other" adventuring band seems to have taken a rather more ...straightforward approach to the errands than the player at Baldur's Gate, though (e.g. ending the illusionary battle by whacking the illusionist over the head with a shield). There are also several references to the story of the earlier Icewind game that took place some thirty years before the sequel.
Here lies a lonely Flower in the third level of Journey. A flOw-like creature is also found. Since all three were developed by thatgamecompany, this is almost immediately noticeable if you played the pre-Journey titles.
Super Robot Wars contains an incredible number of Shout Outs to the mecha genre, which should come as little surprise as the entire series can be considered a virtual love-letter to the genre and its fans. One famous example is Ryusei Date, an Ascended Fanboy who yells out phrases from his favorite shows while in battle. Further, some of the mecha unique to the game were made as homages to others; the most famous of these are the Grungust series, made to resemble Mazinger Z and its brethren, and the Huckebein series, which look like dead-ringers for Gundams. In their first appearances, they even went so far as to give one of the Huckebein's alternate colors the familiar red, white and blue scheme.
In the ending to Original Generation 2: several members of the team are re-assigned to a remote base in Russia called Gandum. Ryusei seems to find the name awfully familiar... Earlier in the game, Masaki gives another character the nickname of "Comet", as she's The Rival of a third character known as "Shooting Star", and happens to be piloting a red fighter. One of Masaki's cats starts to say "So should we call you the Red...", but is interrupted before she can complete her sentence. This sure sounds familiar to some rivalry in a Humongous Mecha show... As well, Excellen accidentally refers to the machine Calion as the "Galion". Galeon is the name of the lion that turns into GaoGaiGar.
In Original Generations, Excellen Browning shows her own brand of nerdiness, especially when she references Back to the Future.
Nearly every game by Looking Glass Studios and the various companies its employees have formed since it closed down (including the System Shock games, Deus Ex and BioShock) has used the number 451 (or 0451) as a door code. Dishonored uses it as the combination for a safe. This is a reference to the novel Fahrenheit 451, and as a running reference could also be considered a shout out to the earlier games.
BioShock has many of these, mainly references to Ayn Rand and her works (Rapture's society was founded on Randian and Objectivist philosophy).
One of the major characters is named Atlas. Another is coyly named Andrew Ryan.
There are a number of posters plastered around saying "Who is Atlas?".
Fontaine in his final mutated form resembles the famous statue of Atlas as seen on the cover of Atlas Shrugged.
Each bottle of Arcadia Merlot is embossed with the name "Fountainhead Cabarnet Sauvignon," as in The Fountainhead, another of Rand's novels.
Sander Cohen may be a reference to the pre-WWI playwright, songwriter, dancer, and director George M. Cohen. Sander Cohen and George M. Cohen both have a similar appearance and a similar way of criticizing people who do not perform a piece perfectly. However, George is less likely to kill you for it.
Non-Rand: One of the books in the library is titled Headology.
Elite (a major influence on Escape Velocity) also calls its two lowest combat ratings "Harmless" and "Mostly Harmless".
Escape Velocity Nova has a randomly-occurring Leviathan-class ship called CATS. Its picture in the communication dialog is the portrait of CATS from the Zero Wing opening, and its lines of dialog are also from the Zero Wing opening.
The total conversion plug-in Colosseum has not only shout out's to the trilogy (Wild Geese, the Virtual Battle Network being themed off of Classic EV) there is also Sarge, Grif and Tucker found in one TAS system, mentions of the CIS as well as Rogue Squadron. Heck, just listen to the menu theme when the game starts up.
The MMORPG EverQuest is full of these. Ironically, it is against the rules for players to name themselves in such a fashion, but it is fine for the designers to name NPCs to make a shout out.
City of Heroes has numerous COUNTLESS shout outs, and gains more with every release.
The police contacts in almost every city zone are thinly-disguised versions of famous TV cops, including characters from Dragnet, Due South, and Miami Vice.
Even better, one of the types of Enhancements is the actual Oscillation Over-thruster itself. It makes your Phasing powers better.
Another instructs you to rescue "Stephen Fayte" — his surname was Strangefate in earlier versions — who is repeatedly described by everyone in the mission as "a gifted surgeon, nothing more," although he is said to be often mistaken for Earth's greatest sorcerer.
One radio mission has the hero sent to rescue "Dr. Frank N. Scott" from the clutches of the bad guys. When the hero stumbles across Dr. Scott, he's reciting a ritual to create a "time warp" that involves a "jump to the left" and a "step to the right." When you interrupt the bad guys, a mini-version of the "Janet! Dr. Scott! Janet! Brad! Rocky!" exchange occurs.
Diablo II, in the Expansion PackLord of Destruction, has a late game boss fight against three Barbarian Ancients. The barbarians in this game have a very Norse-inspired culture. The three ancients bear a strong resemblance to Olaf the Stout, Erik the Swift and Baleog the Fierce, the three Lost Vikings of the early Blizzard platform puzzle game by the same name.
World of Warcraft has a similar reference. One of the miniboss encounters in Ulduman, you fight three dwarves that are named after the three Lost Vikings.
There are many lines like those in Warcraft III. For example, the bandit units, if clicked on enough, will quote Ulysses McGill from Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? repeating the line "I don't want Fop, goddammit, I'm a Dapper Dan man!" The human peasants and knights also reference Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
Hellgate: London, features a Wart, a young boy with a prosthetic leg, who will give you his spare pegleg to use as a weapon. This is a reference to a similar, but more obnoxious, character from Diablo, Wirt, whose pegleg could be used as a weapon in the sequel. This is made more explicit by the Peg Leg having the flavor text "This won't cost me 50 Palladium, will it?", a reference to Wirt's tendency to charge the player character for anything he could get away with — most noticeably, access to his shop of rare items. Hellgate: London was developed by many of the same people as the two Diablo games.
Dr. Kleiner's pet headcrab in Half-Life 2 is called "Lamarr" and sometimes "Hedy". This is a Shout Out to Hedy Lamarr who, aside from being a rather attractive actress, co-invented the early form of the frequency-hopping technology vital to modern wireless communication.
Which one should I attack first? The ugly one. .....could you be more specific?
Are you sure it's to Firefly? It sounds more like to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2, where they fight the two mutants and go, "You take the ugly one." "Which one's the ugly one?"
The Elder Scrolls is full of Shout Outs. Almost all of the gods in the series are named after people who worked on the game, and many NPCs have names that reference other fictional characters (such as Lucien Lachance and Vincente Valteri), sports teams (Tarhiel) and characters from folklore ("Springheel" Jakben of Imbel) Oblivion even has a ruined city called Vindeisel.
In Oblivion, there's even a (possible) shout out to Under Siege. One quest involves a floating inn being hijacked by a group of bandits, and when asked who the main character is, there's an option to reply "I'm just the ship's cook".
There is an item in Oblivion called Blue Suede Shoes a reference to the song by Carl Perkins.
There's an Indiana JonesShout Out in Oblivion: A quest wherein a rival treasure hunter tries to take your spoils right as you emerge from a trap-filled ruin is named "Nothing You Can Possess."
Morrowind had some rather silly ones, such as some of the interior cells in a Sixth House base be named after Pokémon.
Guild Wars has a whole list of Shout-Outs in the skills players can equip. Interestingly, most of them are "shout" skills, like "For Great Justice!" and "Make Your Time!" (Zero Wing), "I Meant to Do That!" (Pee Wees Big Adventure), "None Shall Pass!" (the Black Knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail) and "Can't Touch This!" (MC Hammer). A few fire elemental spells are named after Rodgort, which in turn comes from Trogdor, the dragon created by Strong Bad in Homestar Runner. And then there's the berserking dwarf Kilroy Stonekin, obviously inspired by the famed Leeroy Jenkins, right down to the battlecry.
A less commonly known one is the skill Headbutt, which for a short time, was named Enadiz Headbutt (Enadiz is Zidane spelled backwards). This is an obvious reference to the following meme link. Alas, the skill was renamed to just plain Headbutt in time for Nightfalls release.
There is also The Black Beast of Arrgh another shout out to Monty Python and the Holy Grail but this monster is actually black rather than being green like in the movie.
The Xenosaga series had a number of shoutouts to its spiritual predecessor Xenogears. Xenosaga Episode III was especially chock-full of them. The most elaborate one is Mai Magus, who has a guardian mecha named Leupold, lives with her grandfather, Aizen, and lost her father, Tethlla. This is a direct parallel to Maria Balthasar from Xenogears, who has a guardian mecha, Seibzehn, lives with her grandfather, Isaac, and lost her father, Nikolai. Each of these characters are also visual expies of their counterparts in the other game.
Abel is a Captain Ersatz of Fei, the protagonist of Xenogears. In fact, Fei's first incarnation was called Abel.
The bosses in Abel's Ark are all shout outs to particular mecha in Xenogears.
Abel's Ark itself resembles the Eldridge.
The core of Abel's Ark is very similar to the chamber that holds the final bosses in Xenogears.
The music in Abel's Ark has audio references to "One Who Bares Fangs at God" and "The One Who is Torn Apart"
Nephilim is an expy of Elly, made all the more apparent when she "grows up" at the end of the game.
Jin dresses like Citan, and uses a katana like him. They even share a surname, Uzuki, though it is an alias in Citan's case.
Jr. uses dual pistols, like Billy Lee Black, but is closer in personality to Bart Fatima.
One scene with Kevin and Shion in their bedroom looks very similar to a scene with Kim and Elly in their bedroom.
Omega Universitas is almost identical to Weltall, and it even turns into Omega Id, which is based on Weltall-Id, Weltall's super mode.
Are there any recent games made by Namco which don't make a shout out to Pac-Man?
The Wolf Bout in Shadow Hearts Covenant features several references to the Gundam franchise. For example, the Black Dog Stars are based on the short-lived Goldfish Poop Gang of the original series, while Blanca's ultimate move, Red Comet, is a Shout Out to the nickname of recurring Gundam character Char Aznable.
In From The New World, a convict named Smith in Alcatraz asks you to spread a message to his ally Murdock. Murdock tells you to give the message to Peck, and Peck asks you to send the message to Baracus. Sound familiar?
The Monkey Island series, being created by Lucasfilm's game division LucasArts (formerly Lucasfilm Games), includes dozens of shout outs to Lucas' movies, including the number 1138 popping up a lot, a bridge troll being actually George Lucas in disguise, and wall graffiti suggesting its readers to call 1-800-STAR-WARS (which, at the time, was LucasArts' hint line number) "for a good time".
In fact, every LucasArtsAdventure Game was filled with shout outs to Lucas' movies and to other adventure games. Some of these even became running gags in their own right, such as Chuck the Plant or "I'm selling these fine leather jackets."
In the second Max Payne game there is a billboard advertising a kung fu movie starring Kenneth Yeung. In real life, Kenneth Yeung is the creator of the Kung Fu mod for the first Max Payne game.
In the first game Max can find a mook who had been killed with a stake in the back. Said mook had written out part of the killer's identity...Buff...
The Quest for Glory series contained a number of these. The most prominent example took place in the first game, where the player was required to answer three questions in order to enter Erasmus' castle. The whole sequence was a direct reference to the similar one in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The VGA version also included "I want to be a pirate" as a possible answer. In addition, in the fifth game, if the main character drowned, the game over text would mention Guybrush Threepwood's ability to hold his breath for 10 minutes.
...and Fallout 2 has a special encounter where you meet Brotherhood of Steel paladins searching for said item.
A major Postal 2 game mod included the weapon as well- although when it was put onto disc and sold in an official retail compilation along with the game itself, the name was changed as were the sound effects, for copyright reasons.
Also, the "Holy Orbs of Antioch" used by the Black Templars in Warhammer 40,000.
Really, Fallout 2 deserves its own entry...after all, you can encounter a crashed Star Trek shuttle at one point.
Fallout 3 continues the proud tradition with mockingly named weapons, alien crash sites, three dog shouting out to Firefly with his 'You can't stop the signal' and Babylon 5 when he calls you the 'last best hope of humanity'.
The game begins in Vault 101, the Overseer, a stand-in for Big Brother, rules over a "cult of personality", and one of the security officers is named O'Brian.
A less obvious shout-out (that may or may not have been intended as such) appears in the Fallout 3 expansion The Pitt. The sub-human creatures deemed "trogs" bear an uncanny resemblance to a subterranean pack of predators from a certain movie.
References to Mad Max abound, such as the Leather Armor, Dogmeat the Blue Heeler, the pic of the Lone Wanderer walking alongside Dogmeat on the back of the package and during the ending, the Raiders' outfits, and the Thunderdome-stylegladiator arena in The Pitt.
Dr. Horace Pinkerton appears to be named after the character Horace Pinker from Shocker.
A monster in Hades in Zork: Grand Inquisitor, while listing things adventurers wanted mentioned red pages and blue pages. Red and blue pages are things the player needs in Myst, the first graphic adventure to use video and 3D images.
In Suikoden, the home base of the characters is always somewhere near water — it's actually an enormous ship, in the most extreme case. This is a subtle Shout Out to the novel from which the series gains its name and some of its themes — including the recurring 108characters — in which the bandit protagonists were based out of a marsh.
In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, there are a couple of Shout Outs to the developers' native Scotland. San Andreas, the name of the fictional state in which the game is set, is an obvious reference to Scotland's patron saint, Andrew, and the railroad bridge leading from San Fierro is obviously modelled on the Forth Railway Bridge. There are probably several more in the series.
If you really want to be thorough, the series is going to need a page of its own, because the abovementioned examples are just a tip of the iceberg. Nearly every GTA game has multiple shouts outs to various aspects of pop culture and the developers themselves.
San Andreas also has a reference to the original Half-Life, inside Area 69, which bears a striking resemblance to the Black Mesa Research Facility, complete with Gordon Freeman's crowbar sitting on a table.
Similarly, one of the cities in the game Just Cause is named "Nuevo Estocolmo", being an obvious reference to Stockholm, capital of the developers' native Sweden.
Beyond Good & Evil has a reference to its creator's most well-known work, the Rayman series, in the form of one of its photographable animals. The animal is a cartoonish mosquito found frequently in the Rayman universe, and has the species name A. raymanis. The main character of another Michel Ancel production, Tonic Trouble, appears as the Mascot of the game's brand of healing items in a Parody Commercial.
Almost every acheivement in Army Of Two is a reference to some famous movie.
The Rank 9 Assassin in No More Heroes, Dr. Peace, sometimes holds his guns out at his sides, arms slightly bent. This is exactly the same way Curtis Blackburn holds his guns during his boss fight in Killer7, Suda 51's previous game. Dr. Peace bears more than a slight resemblance to Curtis as well (the major difference is that his hair is brown while Curtis's is white).
There are several other Killer7 references as well. Bad Girl has a "chiller7" brand fridge, and the techniques Lovikov teaches you bear names that refer to the Smiths. ("Memory of Mask": MASK DE Smith, "Memory of Child": Con Smith, "Memory of Demon": Dan Smith, etc.)
Not to mention the numerous Star Wars references, ranging from laser sword based combat to mooks dressed in Darth Vader costumes to the end-of-mission congratulatory screen, which sports a thematic pastiche of the Star Wars theme and ends with the famous hyperspace visual effect from the movies.
There's even one to God Hand. Lose a Blade Lock clash against Rank 4 and he turns Travis' beam katana into a powerless, heart-topped wand. Players of God Hand will recognize it as Shannon's weapon of choice.
Also, the final boss has a similar fighting style to God Hand's Gene, a similar dodging animation, and is called "Jeane".
While on the subject of Suda games, the hotel manager in Killer7 bares an uncanny resemblance to Edo Macalister, the hotel manager from Flower, Sun and Rain. Furthermore, when you talk to him, Gymnopedie plays in the background, the main theme of hotel Flower Sun & Rain
The ending of this webgame appears to be a shoutout to THX-1138.
One of the creatures in Riven: The Sequel to Myst was named a Ytram, which was named such after the creators of Myst and Riven received numerous messages from an overzealous fan. "Ytram" is his name spelled backwards.
When playing as Locke in South Figaro, entering Celes's cell while wearing a soldier outfit will result in a shout-out to the "Aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?" line.
A T. rex shaped robot enemy Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly is known as the R-1000. It is an obvious reference to the T-1000 of Terminator fame right down to the liquid metal construction.
Likewise in Year of the Dragon, in the level 'Desert Ruins', there's an explorer called Tara, who is a not-so-subtle parody of Lara Croft. Not only does she have large...bazoomas, when she sees Spyro, she complains that she spends "all day moving crates, and pushing switches", only for someone else to come and steal her treasure.
Another example from Year of the Dragon would be one of Shelia the Kangaroo's stages. Unlike the rest of the game, it's almost completely viewed from the side. Its name? 'Krash Kangaroo'.
The script writers were apparently fans of British comedy: the Sorceress' dialogue includes a line which blends catchphrases from Dads Army and 'Allo 'Allo!, as part of a scene which introduces a character modeled after British aerial aces from World War II.
In Enchanted Towers, one task involves rescuing a wolf called Farley, and returning them to their owner, named Mowat. At one point, Mowat says "[...] Don't cry, wolf, never cry, wolf...". Then entire thing is a Shout Out to the book Never Cry Wolf by Farley Mowat.
A Hero's Tail has a scene where the Professor advises Spyro on what he needs to reach a level. Most of his suggestions are shout outs to other games.
From Enter the Dragonfly: "You're not hired for your brains, you dinosaurian landmass. Keep quiet or I'll put you back where I found you, unemployed in Molten Crater!" Is it just me, or does this sound extremely similar to a line in The Princess Bride?
There's one even in the first game, to Parappa The Rapper. In the "Gnorc Cove" level, when Spyro rescues Tomas, at the end of their conversation Spyro goes "You gotta believe!" in a similar tone to that of Parappa.
Dragon Quest Heroes Rocket Slime contains shout outs to other Square Enix-published series, such as a Platypunk ally named Ducktor Cid (a reference to the recurring character name in Final Fantasy) and the hero goes up against a tank with a treant-like appearance called Chrono Twigger (an obvious reference to Chrono Trigger), whose in-game logo even resembles the Chrono Trigger logo. These two are notable because the series referenced were formerly Square series, whereas Dragon Quest was an Enix series.
Elite Beat Agents has a stage whose top screen bears a striking resemblance to a Light Gun Game, complete with a gauge showing how much ammo nuts the protagonist has left in his current magazine. Anyone who remembers hearing the infamous "RELOAD! RELOAD! SHOOT OUTSIDE OF THE SCREEN!" in The House of the Dead is going to get a kick out of failing the second section of the song.
Also, the two pets in the game are a dog and a cat named Sam and Max. The dog is the one named Sam. Also, the protagonist of "Romancing Meowzilla" was a character in Ouendan, the game EBA was based on.
La-Mulana, aside from the general homage to the MSX, has many references to specific games, some of them quite obscure:
A ROM combo involving Castlevania will make your whip more powerful.
Combining the two Metal Gear ROMs will make a "!" appear over you when you solve a puzzle.
Many of Elder Xelpud's seemingly-nonsensical quotes allude to MSX games:
"With my spare money, all I could buy was Salamander. I always got the bad ending." (In the MSX Salamander, you need to have Nemesis 2 in the second cartridge slot to get the good ending.)
"Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B A. What's that?" (none of Konami's MSX games uses the Konami code, which originated on NES/Famicom games, and Xelpud is a staunch Famicom hater).
"I wonder what happened to Venom? I haven't seen him since I heard him laughing while in a time slip. I certainly hope he's doing well." (Venom is the Big Bad of the MSX Nemesis 2 and 3, and the ending of Nemesis 3 has the protagonist fleeing from him in a time warp.)
"I can't believe that Simon is a model pervert." (Simon Belmont is described that way in the MSX mahjong game Hai no Majutsushi, also known as Mahjong Wizard.
One fish enemy in the Spring in the Sky has an iron pipe sticking out of its crotch, like the hero of Ashguine 2, and the background music for that stage, "Curse of IRON PIPE," is based on a theme from that game (which is why it had to be replaced in the WiiWare version). The game is also referenced in Elder Xelpud's ramblings.
Viva Pinata contains numerous shout-outs to other Rareware productions in many of the garden decorations—there's a "Bear and Bird" statue of Banjo and Kazooie, the "Dastardos Scarer" that keeps the evil doctor out of your garden looks like Mumbo from the same game, and there's even a "Pirate Statue" commemorated to a built-into-something-else-entirely SNES project of Rare's called "Dream." (The description even says, "Dedicated to a dream that will never die...") There's also an old arcade machine that's "lost its Killer Instinct."
As well as the Mallowolf's attack being to throw amulets from Sabre Wulf, and it's home looking like the head of the wolf from said game.
In Shadow the Hedgehog, if you do certain paths, you hear two of them. The first is after completing the first level with the "hero" ending, Sonic says "I guess that means...welcome to the next level." "Welcome to the Next Level" was one of Sega's old slogans. The second occurs on any level that occurs on the ARK, you will hear the guards occasionally say "Protect Yuji Naka", a shout out to the person credited to the creation of Sonic.
Eggman's robot storage facility in Sonic Battle is named Gimme Shelter.
In Sonic Colors, Sonic makes a crack about how "Nobody said there'd be math", a reference to a running joke from Madworld, whose head writer also wrote for Colors.
God Hand has tons of these. Elvis wears Akuma's prayer beads, Gene has the Shoryuken as a juggle move, and one of the God Reels is 100 Fists, a Spam Attack that references Fist of the North Star. There are also many, many tips of the hat to Clover Studios' previous games, such as Ōkami (one of the Chuihauhas you can race is called Amaterasu) and Viewtiful Joe (the Mad Midget Five). Elvis himself is a giant Shout Out to, well, Elvis.
The galaxy map that shipped with some versions of Prophecy, has stars named after famous science fiction authors, online fandom members, and famous astronauts.
In one particular case, a Real Life star, Barnard's Star, was renamed to Bernard's Star, to honor Jason Bernard, who played Captain William Eisen in Wing Commander III and Wing Commander IV. Bernard passed away shortly after the release of the latter game. See also the TCS Eisen from Wing Commander Prophecy, mentioned in a character's dialog.
The credits to the last two games of the series, Wing Commander Prophecy Advance (GBA port) and Wing Commander Arena (Xbox Live Arcade) give thanks to several members of the fandom who helped with continuity and technical issues during the production of those games.
And yet another Shout Out, this time to The Terminator. The Non-Standard Game Over has the Kilrathi invade Earth, and we get a nice scene where a furry foot crushes a human skull, replete with the sky aflame in nuclear fire.
The World Ends with You contains a shout-out to the original Final Fantasy in the form of an Easter Egg. The description of the Black Cat Atlas, Vol. 10 reads: "Playing Reaper Creeper requires Matoya's Spell, but "NEERC SEVAS EHT TARDNALD LOH" is a mouthful, so most folks don't bother!" Read backwards, holding L and R at the same time on the save screen displays how long you've been playing. In Final Fantasy I, the talking brooms in Matoya's cave would only say "TCELES B HSUP"...an indicator to press B+ Select on your controller to access the world map.
Minamimoto uses an attack in a cutscene that's another shout out to Final Fantasyas well as an obscure math pun. He calls it "Level i Flare", a reference to the recurring level-targeting Blue Magic throughout the series; targeting everything with a level divisible to whatever x is in "Level x Flare", usually 5 (and since i is the square root of negative 1, and -1 times -1 equals 1, and everything is divisible cleanly by 1, that means that every number, real or imaginary, is a multiple of i. Nothing escapes Level i flare, no matter what its level is.)
Septerra Core has a shout-out to the "Aren't you a little short for a Stormtrooper?" scene from Star Wars: A New Hope when Maya infiltrates Connors' pirate base. The number 1138 crops up in the form of an override password.
The "Party RPG" Dokapon Kingdom features a character name Robo-Agent. While he's normally a friendly, affable robot, when someone puts money into his mouth, he turns into a Killer Robot named Robo-Sassin. When he transforms into Robo-Sassin, he shouts: "EX-TER-MI-NATE!"
In the visual novel Fate/stay night (a game already full of shoutouts to old legends and myths), there are skits that you earn depending how many "Bad Ends" you receive. The second of which features Rin Tohsaka and Sakura Matou, two of the game's heroines, in a rather blatant Shout Out to the Touhou series, complete with danmaku patterns and parodies of the Spell Card activations.
Every single game in Namco's Tales Series have shout outs to each other (with the exception of Tales of Phantasia, which is the first game and therefore has nothing to shout out to). In Tales of the Abyss, various other Tales characters are Bonus Bosses; in another Tales game, a character has a Mieu keychain (Mieu is the cute annoying creature from Tales of the Abyss); in Tales of Destiny, the character Klarth from Tales of Phantasia makes a cameo; and so on. A fan favorite is the Indignation spell which has appeared in every game in the franchise, with nearly the same casting incantation. The first scene where Indignation appears (the intro to Tales of Phantasia) can be replicated almost exactly in Tales of Eternia if you know when and where.
Iron John:The Terminator, complete with an Ahnuld-soundalike and "Prince Connor"
The Pied Piper: Surprisingly obscurely, German expressionist films such as M and Metropolis; the scene at the end is virtually identical to the "Moloch Machine" scene in Metropolis, and the Pied Piper is voiced by a convincing Peter Lorre impersonator.
Goro Majima is a sadistic, unstable gangster who literally laughs at pain- even his own- and is willing to kill his own henchmen for the slightest infraction. Not to mention he's so obsessed with killing the protagonist himself that he'll do just about anything to stop someone who's near beating him to the punch. And in the American version (Yakuza) he's voiced by Mark Hamill.
The main villain of the game, Akira Nishiki. A childhood friend of the protagonist who eventually turns into a Magnificent Bastard with ambitions of controlling the entire Yakuza organization and ruthlessly resorts to almost any means to achieve his goals. And in Yakuza he's voiced by Michael Rosenbaum.
The Last Remnant has a few shout outs, but at least three to Devil May Cry.
The two yama NPCs in Athlum and Ghor are named Vergil and Dante, respectively.
Vega Strike has its lightsome "Space Is A Harsh Mistress" gameover screennote if something wrong, it's due to JPEG misnamed PNG. Rlaan bio-fuel is named "Chitty-chitty-boom-boom", there's "Tritanium armor" and Industrial Gems include "Dilithium telluride" ("a desired item among the religious fanatics of the trekkie religion"). There's also a mention of Snowden in the description of heavy flak.
Wild ARMs 5 consists of many shout outs to the previous Wild Arms games including NPC cameos of the previous heroes, alternative costumes for the party members that resemble outfits of the previous heroes (one of them being the most powerful armor in the game for Dean), and the occasional quote from those NPC cameos that reference to their adventures in the previous games (like the Virginia cameo making a reference to meeting Maya Schrodinger, her constant rival in Wild ARMs 3, when you give her a Golden Angel).
Memory Bird: What is greed? A miserable pile of selfishness! But enough talk...
The Shin Megami Tensei game Raidou Kuzunoha vs. The Soulless Army has a homeless NPC that you can encounter in Episode 2 early on. After you bribe the Lucky Charm out of his hands, you can read his mind again to reveal him saying "You all assume I'm safe here in my hood, unless I try to start again." This is a shout out to Linkin Park's song, Breaking the Habit.
And also in Chapter 2, Oboroguruma, a ghost car that appears at the Full moon, says this:
In the Tsukihime "sequel" Kagetsu Tohya, there is a shoutout to the boxing manga/anime Hajime No Ippo. For comedy purposes Ciel uses a fighting style she calls "The Hitman Style" and assumes a stance similar to that of Mashiba Ryo, the character who uses that style in Hajime no Ippo. This is a reference to this manga because Thomas "Hitman" Hearns, the real-life boxer who this style was based on, did not call his style "the Hitman Style."
Arc, in her cat form, counters this by avoiding the punches in an "oddly familiar circular motion", a reference to Ippo's "Dempsey Roll" and peek-a-boo style.
In probably one of the most bizarre cameos ever, the Sega Genesis game Revenge of Shinobi features a boss fight with...Spider-Man. And when you defeat him, he turns into...Batman. ...watch this video.
Doom II has a secret level which is basically lifted right out of id software's previous FPS, Wolfenstein 3D. If you dig deeper, you can find a secret room where you must gib four strung-up Commander Keens to progress.
Discworld Noir is mostly a big homage to Film Noir, but includes a few Shout Outs to other things including Doctor Who ( Satrap's big villain speech is a fairly direct lift of Davros's in "Genesis of the Daleks") and other video games ("They'd hidden in a wine barrel. Now why did that make me think of the phrases 'You wait. Time passes.' and 'Thorin sits down and begins singing about gold'?" - the two phrases coming from the "hiding in wine barrels" scene in the Interactive Fiction version of The Hobbit.)
The Age of Empires clone Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds features the Imperial basic troops (unsurprisingly, stormtroopers) announcing "THX-1138 ready, sir."
In the opening cinematic of Cortex Command, in one panel that shows the various alien creatures that humans have met, one on the edge is very obviously a Spathi.
The Glider series has a few references to The Wizard of Oz. Glider PRO, with its Art Nouveau aesthetic, also alluded to Little Nemo in the name "Slumberland" for the principal game scenario and the name "NEMO" on the mailboxes.
Victoria: An Empire Under The Sun features many Shout outs. Most are historical in nature, but some random events reference movies. Most notably several "Lose X of random resource" events, for instance, losing Precious Metal has the acceptance button display the text "My preciousss!" and cotton has "Frankly, I don't give a damn."
In the second Might and Magic, there was a Lord Peabody who offered your party use of a Time Machine if you went out and retrieved his "boy," a Paladin named Sherman. Most of the hireling names were jokes of some kind, and one of the "portal" services was operated by a fellow named Jean-Luc, who offered to "beam you" to another town.
G-Darius, of the Darius side-scrolling scifi spaceship-shooter series, is intentionally an anagram of Gradius according to some sources.
The acronym for the titular unit of Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X may be evocative of HAWC from the novels of Dale Brown.
Speaking of Spider-Man game shout outs; in the game based upon the second movie, aside from having the usual shout outs to Spider-Man and the Marvel Universe in general, the game also includes a considerably more subtle shout out to a completely different work. The shout out comes in the form of a random piece of dialogue you might hear from some thugs on the street.
Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility features a pair of carpenter's apprentices named Bo and Luke, who even share hair colors with their counterparts from The Dukes of Hazzard (Bo's got blond hair and Luke's a brunette). Their personalities are inverted, though: Luke's the impulsive apprentice, and Bo's the rational one.
Animal Parade has a few more:
In one of Animal Parade's events, Calvin can find Owen and Luke attempting to demolish a very historic wall in the mines and, scolding them, cry that "It belongs in a museum!"
And, this being Dwarf Fortress, it's incredibly easy to add more as you see fit. For instance, there's a player-created mod that adds new reasons for dwarfs to like existing critters; among those added are "...likes Batmen for their awesome theme songs. DANANANANANANA BATMAN!"
Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened is packed with these. Not only is the game itself a pastiche of Arthur Conan Doyle and HP Lovecraft, but two major characters under investigation (Dr. Gygax and Lord Arneson), as well as the authors of several reference books Holmes consults, are named for RPG designers. Plus, there's a cameo appearance by a little Belgian kid on a train, whose name just happens to be Hercule Poirot.
In the "sequel", Nemesis, you need to take a picture of a bat to stun it (Long story). When you look at the picture, sure enough, the shadow looks exactly like a famous insignia. And then the guard says to take it to a man named Wayne, as it was his camera.
Crack in Time goes absolutely nuts with them, see the series's page for details.
The arcade game San Francisco Rush 2049 has, on the cabinet, a telephone-style numpad for entering your password for your in-game account. It's also used in-game to activate codes. One such code, "8675309#", is an obvious reference to the song "867-5309/Jenny" by Tommy Tutone. Entering this code will end your current game.
The series' resident Tank Goodness incarnate, the Mammoth Tank, is a nod to the Nazi German super-heavy tank Panzer VIII Maus, the largest WW 2 tank to reach the prototype stage; it was captured by the Soviets before it ever managed to hit the production lines. How is that relevant? It was going to be named Mammutnote That's German for "mammoth"., at one point.
In the final Soviet mission, completing one of the objectives causes President Ackerson to rage "Why, you little...!"
Sensory Overload has, at one point, a random maze of identical rooms, eventually leading to a secret item, the Silencer. When you enter the maze, it says "You are in a maze of twisty little passages, all alike", obvious Colossal Cave shoutout.
Shift 4 has the ending make a reference to Shaft, but the series as a whole creates lots of shout outs to Portal:
"The timer is a lie!"
'Splosion Man makes a Shout Out in the process of pointing out that something else in the game isn't actually a Shout Out — the achievement for getting all the Cakes is called "This is not a Portal reference."
In The Beatles: Rock Band, playing "Yellow Submarine" leads to a shout out to the movie of the same name. The band wears the same outfits as they did in the film, and the submarine itself is very similar to the one in the movie.
Playing "I Am the Walrus" leads to a shout out to the sequence with the song in the Magical Mystery Tour film.
Jade Empire has a shout out to Knights of the Old Republic, another of Bioware's games. In Jade Empire, the recruiter at the arena remarks something along the lines of "you are indeed mysterious, stranger." In KOTOR, Mysterious Stranger was the codename given to the player character when (s)he participates in the Duel Ring.
"Canderous" was also the name of a minor NPC in Castlekeep.
The Wookie seems quite similar to Chewie, swears a life debt to your character, and travels with a "scoundrel." (Though, unlike Han, Mission is a sweet-natured teenaged girl).
And there are a ridiculous amount of references to the movies. From the opening shot of the Endar Spire under attack (shades of the Tantive IV) to the Star Forge (the final Boss battle area was inspired by the Throne Room in ROTJ). In the second game, the Exile can point out that lying is still lying, even if it's "from a certain point of view". When rescuing Bastila, one dialogue option is "My name is <Fullname>, and I'm here to save you!" (A recreation of Luke's line to Leia). During torture, you're also given the option to say "Alderaan. It's on Alderaan" - a direct reversal of Leia's stall tactic of "Dantooine. It's on Dantooine!"
You also have the option to call Zaalbar a "walking carpet" when you meet him (a reference to Leia's dismissal of Chewbacca).
In the second game, you can say "Maybe you'd like it back in your cell?" when Atton complains about your rescue attempt (reference to Han's reaction to Leia complaining about their lack of planning), and if you beat the game as a light-side and then as a dark-side character you get an easter egg in which Atton asks a female character "Are you an angel? No, that's the worst line I've ever used. Hope some poor kid doesn't start using it," doubling as a Take That to Anakin's awkward introduction to Padme in episode 1.
Someone on the localization team for Fossil Fighters liked silly Internet memes. In addition to one NPC wondering what the worth of a man's life is ("...guarding a miserable pile of secrets?"), another gets in a "DO NOT WANT."
The earlier Touhou games seem to have a number of shout outs to Agatha Christie's novels, including music tracks named "U.N.Owen was her?" and "Who done it?", a spellcard named "And Then There Were None?", and a character whose last name is Margatroid, who is based on a character from A Murder is Announced. There are also several references to Fist of the North Star, such as Reimu's Fantasy Haven (several times), and several basic attacks in Hisoutensoku, and the Red Stone of Aja from Jo Jos Bizarre Adventure.
A few of the fighters appearing in the original Killer Instinct were reminiscent of characters from other works, like skeleton warrior Spinal coming right out of Jason and the Argonauts, werewolf Sabrewulf being loosely based on a character of the same name also from a Rare game, or the resident alien Glacius sporting the Shapeshifting abilities of the T-1000.
There also is Eyedol's parodic ending, in which a woman in purple approaches him claiming that he's her long lost son Billy, lost in a car incident, and that she gave him his bracelets for his birthday-mirroring exactly the epilogue of Blanka in SFII. Minus the last scene...
In the Bad Ending of It Came from the Desert: after the nuke destroys Lovelock, the radio announcer asks: "Is anybody there? Anybody at all"? (The Day After). Also, the town's name may be a reference to James Lovelock.
EarthBound makes tons of references to the Beatles, the most notable one being the yellow submarine.
Heck not just the Beatles the entire Mother series has shout outs to a lot of old pop culture such as The Runaway Five being a reference to the Blues Brothers which was so obvious they were changed for the American translation, and theres also a reference to the Barrett strong song (Money thats what I want) as well as tons of other old pop culture and movie references throughout the entire series also it is natural for it to have tons of Beatles references as Itoi is a huge fan of The Beatles.
Backyard Sports. Oh, where to start. Reese Worthington makes tons of Star Wars references, Dmitri Petrovich talks about many computer languages, and Sunny Day has a Putt-Putt watch. There are many more, too many to fit on this page.
A "Create Gold" spell in Dungeon Keeper 2 is cast with an incantation "Expressus Americanus".
Half-Life: Opposing Force has a lot of fun with these. The Drill Sergeant Nasty in the training mission barks lines from Full Metal Jacket. The wisecracking soldiers riding in the chopper with you at the start of the game quote a line or two from Aliens. And later in the game, there's a puzzle where you have to activate a gearbox and open a valve, referencing Valve Corporation (developers of Half-Life) and Gearbox Software (creators of Opposing Force).
A tomb, presumably belonging to Jackie Chan, if Lo Wang's remark is anything to go by.
Pick up a second Uzi and Lo Wang will say "Be proud, Mister Woo."
MadWorld has a few regarding Clover's previous title God Hand, notably the way you dispose of the vampire lady (awesome rack on her, though) ,as you spank her just like the female minions from that game. The final fight against the Black Baron is also chock full of references to the battles between Gene and Azel.
Tetris The Grand Master had a Licensed Game spinoff based on Cardcaptor Sakura. The goal in that game was to clear seven jeweled blocks rather than make lines. This objective was adapted into a game mode in the latest game in the series, Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror-Instinct. Heboris, a fan clone of TGM, features a similar mode called Tomoyo.
The Zeppelin in Ninja GaidenXbox heavily resembles the Hindenburg, and goes down in flames in a similar manner. "Oh, the humanity!"
Freebie MMO Rappelz had many NPCs in the first area directly named after characters from the Ogre Battle strategy RPG series. (At least in the English version.)
Cave StoryWiiWare changed a few things in the translation. One can't help but think of the Kool-Aid Man when Balrog shows up for any reason at all. The first time he shows up (through the Shack door), think of Balrog speaking in the Kool-Aid Man's voice for cheap, yet instant lulz.
In Olivia's second Story Mode path in Battle Fantasia, she encounters a mysterious stranger who calls himself the "Romance Knight" (who is actually a masked Ashley), who's basically a walking shout-out to Tuxedo Kamen from Sailor Moon. He tosses a single rose at his opponent, signaling his arrival, and then gives a short speech about love and devotion before disappearing.
When the player is doing well while playing as Han Solo in Star Wars Battlefront II, an enemy stormtrooper will occasionally exclaim, "Hey! Solo shot first! That's not fair!", a clear reference to Han's confrontation with Greedo at Mos Eisley in the original Star Wars movie.
A subtle one: at one point in Lost Planet 2, you have to fend off a giant (nearly) invincible Sand Worm type creature in a desert. It has scurrying legs at its front that are suspiciously identical to those possessed by the Ohmu from Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind — similarly invincible insect creatures inhabiting an Earth that's largely desert.
In FEAR, the office building has a couple of shout-outs to Office Space - namely Milton's trademarked Red Stapler (no Swingline label, though), and TPS Reports scattered on the floor.
In Half-Life 2, one of the rebels is named Winston, possibly in reference to Winston Smith, protagonist of Nineteen Eighty-Four, from which the game gets a lot of its influence.
A downright bizarre case of one: The hidden object game Cate West: The Vanishing Files has a good number of the street names named after characters from Monster, including a Tenma Street, apparently to drive the point home that it's not just generic European names. Now, how many people who play hidden object games do you think are going to get a reference like that?
In SimEarth, you can advance the evolution of a species with a square black Monolith. Also, when the planet's civilisation reaches a high enough level, the cities turn themselves into starships and lift off from the planet, possibly a reference to James Blish's Cities in Flight.
Seeing as how Transformers: War for Cybertron is basically High Moon Studio's love letter to the childhoods of boys who grew up in The80s, the whole game runs on Shout Outs to the Transformers universe. What isn't a blatant re-purposing of content from other continuities is simply Pragmatic Adaptation: turning Megatron's alt mode from a pistol to a tank is one of them. Clearer examples are often used for the names of achievements. For example, if you kill two snipers within 5 seconds of each other, you are rewarded with the achievement "Targetmaster." note For those who aren't Transfans, the Targetmasters was a line of toys produced during Generation 1.Props go out to the boss battle with Soundwave during the Autobot half of the Campaign mode. After the player hasn't seen hide nor hair of Rumble, Frenzy, or Laserbeak during the three missions where you can play as Soundwave, and possibly a mild Shout Out in his possession of the Sentry ability, he produces all three during the boss encounter, and are in fact integral to defeating the monotone fiend.
The entire game is basically a re-imaging of the backstory to G1, with a TV series following up on it planned. It has shout-outs to every other Western Transformers thrown in for good measure. Actually explaining how Starscream went from a scientist and friend of Jetfire to a treacherous Decepticon is a nice touch.
Fall of Cybertron continues the tradition, with Slug (formerly Slag) quoting his entrance from The Transformers: The Movie. Plenty of other pop up as well, including Starscream's crown from his coronation scene in the same film.
Descent II has green homing missile-launching robots called Lou Guards (which are also expies of the Super Hulks from the first game), a possible reference to Lou Ferrigno of The Incredible Hulk fame. Also, one of the later levels is named "Drec'nilbie K'luh".
In Trinity Universe, there's an optional event where Kanata and his friends run into Recit after he goes on a rash of cash register vandalism. Recit immediately admits to being responsible, which disappoints the Prinny, who expected to engage in a battle of wits where Kanata would "use logic, deduce, and present evidence" to incriminate him.
Prinny: "Take that, dood!"
One line in The Lost Crown: A Ghost-Hunting Adventure is a Title Drop for the M. R. James work, A Warning To The Curious, that provided much of the inspiration for the game's storyline.
The [adult swim].com original game House of Dead Ninjas is a Retraux affair designed to resemble an early NES game - and even comes with a manual. The first enemy profiled, Niji, is described as "a Pretty Cool Guy" who runs straight ahead "and doesn't afraid of anything," which may be more memetic than referential. But then it says he likes to pretend he's a girl and calls himself "Ninjetta" - a reference to Birdo's profile in the original Super Mario Bros. 2 manual. Most of the enemies are based on classic Mario or Zelda enemies; the stone-faced crusher Gror is basically a Thwomp, while Magicloke is a Wizzrobe (note the name).
The first phase of the boss of Raiden IV's second stage looks and behaves similarly to the stage 2 boss of DonPachi, while the third boss, which consists of multiple ships that first attack separately then combine, was apparently inspired by the third boss of Konami's old Raiden clone Lightning Fighters.
In the old Mac game Capn' Magneto, the wizard in the Shrine is named "? (The Mysterian)", a reference to the band ? and the Mysterians.
Each enemy you meet has a specific first name, which sometimes are references to prominent figures within the Doom community. ("Rhaluka" is the name of John Romero's wife.)
One boss isHugoAndore, who is in turn a Captain Ersatz of André the Giant. His "you're dead" message is simply "OBEY." note The OBEY Giant, meanwhile, was a modified version of a sticker fad starring, you guessed it, André the Giant.
In The 7th Guest, Stauf's "welcome to my house" speech seems to be a reference to The Legend of Hell House.
There is one in the trophy list in Arcana Heart 3 to, of all things, Saturday Night Live's Celebrity Jeopardy! skits. Using four different sword techniques in a single match while playing as Kamui will net you a trophy called "That's 'S' Words, Mr. Connery!"
In NieR, the hero is asked to save a prince from a forbidden shrine who is searching for his mask. When the prince is found and he finds his mask, the screen goes letter box as the camera gives a slight bird's eye-view of the prince, his mask spinning in midair a little bit over his outstretched hand. This perfectly mirrors "Item Found" cutscenes of the 3D Zelda games. It also comes complete with a Suspiciously Similar Song version of the Zelda fanfare.
DEFCON is largely inspired by the NORAD screens in WarGames, so scrolling text in the lobby screen includes the list of games from the movie ("FALKEN'S MAZE, BLACK JACK, GIN RUMMY...THEATERWIDE BIOTOXIC AND CHEMICAL WARFARE, GLOBAL THERMONUCLEAR WAR") and "How about a nice game of chess?"
9-Volt and 18-Volt's stages in the WarioWare series have many references to old Nintendo games, including some obscure ones like Mario Clash for the Virtual Boy.
When you clear a mission in Buddy Rush, there's a chance your helpers will compliment you by calling you "Magic Hands". In a earlier version of the game, they actually called you "God Hand". Also, a ruins-themed chapter has items related to Indiana Jones (whip, hat and Holy Grail) and a mushroom item obviously has a description that alludes to Super Mario Bros.
Fate/hollow ataraxia has some shoutouts to other works in the Nasuverse. For example, there's a lampshade hanging of how Tohsaka is pretty clearly an expy of Tohno Akiha, though it isn't stated outright. There are also two new movies playing, both of them nonsensical. They're called NEKOARC and TIGERDOJO. In allcaps.
While Koei have been known to deliberately make internal references and homages in the course of Gundam Musou, it's much more noticeable, and a bit startling, when shout outs like this turn up in a quote from Dynasty Warriors 7 of all things. If it's coincidental (taking 7's 2011 release date into account), it's a heck of a coincidence.
A trio of power-ups are inspired directly by Super Mario Bros.: the Magic Mushroom and Mini Mushroom make you larger and smaller, respectively, and the 1-Up Mushroom gives you and extra lifenote when you run out of hearts, the mushroom restores your health and returns you to the last safe room you entered before you died.
The Wrath boss walks around the room dropping bombs, just like Bomberman. The layout of its room even has hard blocks that can't be blasted.
In Minecraft, there is a surprising amount of shout-outs, from the the title screen that gives references by the dozen to placing a picture of king graham.
Dragon Slayer II Xanadu has the Black Onyx and Fire Crystal items, whose names are surely inspired by The Black Onyx, the first successful Japanese RPG, and its sequel The Fire Crystal.
In Super Mario 3D Land, In World 5-2, you see Mario from a topview. If you have a fire flower, sometime in the level, you can light 4 torches, and the familiar "Zelda" jingle that plays whenever you solve a puzzle. In fact, Zelda is turning 25 this year, (2011) another (possibly coincidental) reference to the Zelda series, by means that it's World 5-2, backwards = World 2-5, or 25!
Astérix at the Olympic Games has a cutscene where Asterix knocks out a Roman with a headbutt. For a brief moment, the background changes to a soccer field and a referee raises a red card. It's an obvious reference to the infamous incident involving Zinedine Zidane at the 2006 World Cup Final, and may be also a nod to the cameo of Zidane himself in the movie.
The "Bunnies helped tame the Wild West" level of RaymanRaving Rabbids has a giant steampunk robot for the end boss, which seems startlingly reminiscent of the climax of Wild Wild West.
In Soul Nomad & the World Eaters, when Christophe sends the hero and his/her group off to fight one of the World Eaters, Danette demands to know its special powers and weaknesses:
Gig: "...it can fly at like 5 million miles an hour. It has heat vision, it can breathe super-freezing air, and it can shoot freaking lasers from its eyes. Oh, but it can't see through lead, and it's totally weak to a certain element from its home world."
One event in the Visual Novel reveals that Momoyo lost sleep due to spending the night reading one of Yamato's manga collection. The name of the manga? 20th Century Men.
The boys are always reading copies of "Jasop", discussing the latest "To-Loverun". Yamato asks Yukie to fetch him a copy of "Sasoday". Note that the "N" character in katakana is very similar to "So" in Japanese.
EVERY SINGLE quit-game skit in the Visual Novel is a shout out to something, including other roles played by each character's voice actor/actress. One such simple gag goes as follows
Momoyo: "I'm gonna play the little sister character today!""Hey brother! Where are you?"
Suguru: "I'm right here! Your elder brother stands before you!"
Momoyo: "Found ya!"*PUNCH*
This skit references these two characters' voice actor/actress' roles in the Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam movie compilation.
Numerous references to other galge and makers, including Giga, who lent their game engine to the Maji Koi series.
In a scene in Wanko's route, Wanko mention that her heart skipped when Kaku is mentioned. This is extended further by Miyako saying she sounds like Teiiku and Chika saying she sounds like Chouhi.
During the Kawakami War Gen-san is insistent that he is a competent archer. Nothing comes out of this since the purpose was to point out that he is an archer. Should come as no surprise that this is the only time in the entire game that the English word "archer" is used instead of the Japanese word of archer that is used in all other instances.
In Marvel Super Heroes: War of the Gems for the SNES, Spider-Man's Web Throw (his Gem Power move) has the same exact animation as Birdie's Murderer Chain move as seen in the Street Fighter Alpha games.
Time Gal has one, but only in Japan: in one of the death scenes in 1588, Reika is chased by a shark. What does she say while this is happening? "JAAAAAAAAAWZUUUUUUUUU!" In the U.S. version, when swinging on a vine in 65,000,000 B.C., she attempts a Tarzan scream.
In Japan, the Fatal Fury series is known asGarou Densetsu. However, official Japanese artwork of Terry Bogard often features him wearing a baseball cap with the Fatal Fury logo on its crown, making a Shout Out to the series' name outside of Japan.
BioForge: Two dropships named Roenick and Chelios, in reference to two then-players of the Chicago Blackhawks.
Organ Trail: Director's Cut gives a quick nod to the creators of the original game with a Steam achievement called "Don, Paul and Bill's Curse"who? Don Rawitsch, Bill Heinemann, and Paul Dillenberger, which you earn by having one of your party members die of dysentery.
Messiah has a nod to the composer Jesper Kyd in the form of a location called "Club Kyd".
Dra Koi has a Dragon Ball Z shoutout when the dragon estimates the protagonist's power level as being five. The story also does a shoutout to Demonbane, a work from the same company.
Chex Quest 2's "Cinema" level (its upgraded version, at least) has several "movies" playing, including one that is a loop of a baby carriage rolling down stairs, in a reference to Battleship Potemkin. This is probably the most cerebral shout-out to be seen in a game about heroic anthropomorphic breakfast cereal.
Someone on the dev team really liked Monty Python and the Holy Grail, as the final boss remarks "It's only a flesh wound!" after having limbs blown off, and "Llamas Trained By" appears at the very end of the credits (flashing wildly, no less).
Occasionally, after a particularly large explosion, you'll get to hear Steve Tyler crying "TOASTY!" Well, this was made at the height of Kombatmania.
Ōkami has several shout-outs to The Legend of Zelda, the main source of inspiration for the designers. There are also references to other Capcom games, such as Street Fighter, Devil May Cry and Viewtiful Joe.
The Id boss was based on one of the Final Bosses from Sa Ga 3. Specifically, it was meant to be an inversion.
The arcade beat'em-up Karate Blazers by Visco, which can be found all over the place in Flash game form, references Black Rain in its third boss, identical triplets who all look like Sato, the bad guy of the film. The weirdest shout out (or perhaps Take That), however, is the fourth boss: a morbidly obese man dressed exactly like Nadia from Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water (seen here at about 6:25). What.
In the text intro to Chapter 78 of Caribbean Hideaway Planky the parrot stole a magical talisman which had been traded to some other pirates for a ship. When he came back with it he said "Hey Mr. Talisman, tally me banana, squawk!"
On the title screen of Zombie Solitaire, which depicts several zombies walking down a street which includes a pocket-size cemetery, the few legible gravestones sport the names "Elvis Presley," "Jimi Hendrix" and "Jim Morrison." Also, a scene which involved solving a simple puzzle to exit the sewers had a skeleton with a whip and fedora slumped on a bridge, while the ending scene on a tropical beach depicted a Magnum, P.I. era Tom Selleck with what was probably intended to be a shortish John Hillerman standing next to him.