Do you remember the R.O.B., the one and only video game robot? He now stars as Nav-Com of Sub-C.
StarTropics is supposed to be the sister game to The Legend of Zelda. That might be why the octots of StarTropics and the octoroks of Zelda are so similar.
In StarTropics II, you meet up with a pizza delivery guy who is riding a Koopa Troopa.
Look at the mat the chief is on. The triangle design slightly resembles that of the Triforce.