This article is from the Final-Fantasy and other Square Soft Games FAQ, by email@example.com (Nick Zitzmann) with numerous contributions by others.
Terra/Tina (from FF VI): Terra is not only a feminine name, but also
refers to Earth. "Terra Firma," for example, is a word meaning "land".
Thames (from Xenogears): "Thames" is the name of a river and valley in
Thanatos (from Secret of Mana): "Thanatos" is an Ancient Greek word,
meaning "death personified". (Thanks to firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tiamat (from FF I, FF VIII, and SaGa/FFL I): In Babylonian mythology,
Tiamat co-created the world with her husband, Apsu. Later on, Ea (the
god of wisdom) slew Apsu; and his son, Marduk, challenged Tiamat. Marduk
eventually slays Tiamat.
Toroia (from FF IV): This city may have been named after Troy, a city
belonging to the Persian Empire of ancient times, which was famous for
one particular woman. Troy was the site of the famous Trojan War, where
the Mycenaeans in Greece fought the Trojans over the capture of their
queen, Helen. (Helen is also known as "Helen of Troy," or "The Face that
Launched a Thousand Ships".) The Greeks won the Trojan War by use of the
famous Trojan Horse, which fooled the Trojans into letting them into
Tower of Bab-il/Babel (from FF IV and Xenogears): It is said that during
the time of the Old Testament, a group of people were planning on
building a tower which would take them all the way up to God. When God
found about this, God made these people unable to communicate with each
other as a punishment, so the project was never executed due to the
people's failure to communicate with each other. (This tower might have
also inspired the Tower in FFL I and the Pillar of the Sky in FFL II.)
Ultima (from FF II, VI, VII, and VIII): "Ultima" was probably named in
part after Richard Garriot's "Ultima" series of PC RPGs. The first few
Ultima titles were published by Sierra On-Line, but everything after
that was published by Origin (which is now owned by Electronic Arts).
"Ultima" also means "last" in Latin.
Venus (from SaGa II/FFL II): In Roman Mythology, Venus ("Aphrodite" in
Greek mythology) was the Roman god of beauty. Needless to say, she was
one of the most popular of the Roman gods, but even she despised some
people, like a mortal girl named Psyche. Venus did have one child
(Cupid, a demigod of love in Roman mythology), and has also given her
name to the second planet from the sun in our solar system.
Vicks/Biggs and Wedge (from FF VI, VII, VIII, and Chrono Trigger): Biggs
and Wedge were two Rebel X-Wing pilots who fought side-by-side with Luke
Skywalker in the original Star Wars movie during the assault on the
Death Star. It's quite possible that the translator thought that Biggs's
name was "Vicks" and used that instead. (Note: The name was corrected in
Vierge (from Xenogears): "Vierge" (pronounced: "VEE-eh-jhh") is a French
word, meaning "virgin". The name most likely refers to Jesus's mother in
the New Testament, Mary, who gave "virgin birth" to Jesus.
Weltall (from Xenogears): "Weltall" is a German word, meaning
Xenogears (from Xenogears): The prefix, "xeno," means "alien" in ancient
Greek. The suffix, "gears," is used throughout the game Xenogears and
some other video games (ie. "Metal Gear") as meaning "robot". Hence,
"Xenogears" means "alien robot".
Yggdrasil (from Xenogears): In Norse mythology, Odin created Yggdrasil
as a world tree, which kept the world in balance. At the top of
Yggdrasil was Asgard (pronounced: "us-guard"), the home of the gods. The
bottom was Nifelheim (or Hel), the Norse afterlife. Between those realms
lay Midgard, the realm of humans and former body of the ice giant Ymir,
as well as separate realms to house the giants and other creatures. The
Norse legends predicted that Yggdrasil would be destroyed during
Ragnarok, but years after the incident, the survivors would come back to
live in a new world order of peace. (See "Odin," "Midgar," "Ragnarok,"
Zeal (from Chrono Trigger): "Zeal" is an archaic term used to describe
eagerness, or in a religious context, love in action. It almost always
has to do with actions to promote an idea or religion, ie. taking
actions and creating works "by the love of God."
Zeboim (from Xenogears): The Bible's Book of Genesis mentions the sister
cities of Sodom, Gomorrha, Adama, Seboim (it can be spelled either way),
and Bala (sometimes also called Segor), which existed in an unknown
place around the time of Abraham. The cities were destroyed in Genesis
19:28 for their citizens committing a number of sins against God, and
their names have ever since been associated with acts of sin (ie.
Zephyr (from Xenogears): "Zephyr" is an English word, meaning "mild
Zohar (from Xenogears): The "Haz-Zohar," or the "Book of Splendor," is
one of the levels of the Jewish sephiroth. It was intended to give
insight symbolically into the inner life of God, whose symbols were
based on the Torah and Israel's life in exile, in order to provide a
cosmic-symbolic interpretation of Judaism and the history of Israel.