Alfa Ronaldo: the curious case of the football game laced with obscure Italian car references

The Zero Car

“I know, I will give these fake footballers names corresponding to key figures in the history of an illustrious European car manufacturer,” said nobody ever. Or maybe they did, because I think I may have stumbled across the most obscure, bizarre and downright pointless video game Easter Egg there is.

The scene, if it did happen, might have gone something like this. The game is about to go to press. All the players have been included, their names changed slightly as the developer doesn’t own the rights. Bekam. Ronnaldo. Shefshenko (it’s 1999). All that needs to be inputted are some names for the rubbish made-up footballers you get at the start of dream team mode, the ones you chop in for real players as soon as you get prize money.

“Don’t spend too long on it,” I imagine the team leader saying to the programmer/researcher/work experience kid in a semi-dark…

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