Melinoe fighting Hecate from Hades 2 trailer

‘Hades II’s Protagonist Has a Hell of a Backstory

Didn’t Zagreus from Hades say he didn’t have any known siblings? That was the first game, and then his parents, Hades and Persephone, got back together and had Melinoë somewhere along the way. But we wouldn’t have another game if they all lived happily ever after.

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In the upcoming highly anticipated Hades II, Melinoë’s mission is to save her family from Chronos. The Underworld is in shambles but Melinoë, the Princess of the Underworld, escaped the clutches of Chronos. Hecate, the goddess of witchcraft and necromancy, took her in and trained Melinoë in witchcraft. Now she’s prepared to embark on her quest to avenge her kin, with the help of the Greek gods in Olympus.

But if you’ve had an obsessive phase over Greek mythology, you’ll know that Melinoë’s origin story is different. Thank Olympus for these creative liberties by Supergiant Games, because a part of Melinoë’s real story is rather unsettling.

One of the darkest parts of Melinoë’s story is that her biological father was thought to be Zeus instead of Hades. Zeus, in the Orphic text, disguised himself as Hades to have sex with Persephone (we call that rape), resulting in the conception of Melinoë. This wouldn’t be the first time Zeus deceived Persephone, because even Zagreus is reported to be Zeus’ son.

In Orphic tradition, Melinoë has the extremely badass title Goddess of Ghosts and Nightmares. She’s also represented by the crescent moon, which is prominent in her character design. Despite that terrifying title, Melinoë is responsible for guiding the spirits of the dead to the Underworld. This role is important because it keeps the dead away from the living.

An even more interesting, left-out fact about Melinoë in Hades is her true association with Hecate. Instead of a mentor, Melinoë was thought to be an epithet of Hecate herself because of their shared role of guiding spirits.

(featured image: Supergiant Games)


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Vanessa Esguerra
Vanessa Esguerra (She/They) has been a Contributing Writer for The Mary Sue since 2023. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Economy, she (happily) rejected law school in 2021 and has been a full-time content writer since. Vanessa is currently taking her Master's degree in Japanese Studies in hopes of deepening her understanding of the country's media culture in relation to pop culture, women, and queer people like herself. She speaks three languages but still manages to get lost in the subways of Tokyo with her clunky Japanese. Fueled by iced coffee brewed from local cafés in Metro Manila, she also regularly covers anime and video games while queuing for her next match in League of Legends.