Sometimes the best companion in a video game is someone who doesn’t talk and more importantly, doesn’t judge. In that regard, no better video game companion fits the criteria better than animals or video game pets. They might not have the same level of humanity that the human companions do, but they’re preferable most of the time since they can be cuter.
stray, one of the most recent titles featuring an animal protagonist, took this up a notch by making a cat the main star of the game. But prior to that title, a lot of animals or pets in video games have hogged the spotlight, more so than the playable protagonist themselves. In any case, these pets have established themselves as capable cuties despite having little to no dialog or humanity in them.
8 Palico – Monster Hunter Series
monster hunter rise might have introduced dogs as companions in addition to the Palico cats, but the latter is still more desirable as a fellow assistant hunter. These anthropomorphic cats can “un-stun” the players, track down monsters, and keep their masters alive by throwing healing blobs or equipment from time to time.
They might not be the most reliable helpers in the game (due to the randomness of their AI during hunts) but it’s hard to stay angry at them for missing that heal window because of their inherent wackiness. So even when they don’t function as intended, they’re still very much part of the hunt. Besides, they’re the reason why the players don’t get eaten by monsters; they practically drag the players in carts after a monster knocks them out.
7 BD-1 – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
BD-1 is a robot and not an animal, but let’s not discriminate here. He’s as good a pet or companion as any. Because unlike the organic pets in video games, BD-1 doesn’t mind getting burned or sucked out by the vacuum of space. Plus, he can be compact. As Cal Kestis’ droid companion, BD-1 is also a strong contributor to the war effort of the Rebel Alliance.
As a droid, he has most of the usual droid abilities as those present in the Star Warsmovies. BD-1 can hack doors and elevators, he can zap enemies, and can look for hidden stuff. He’s not as cuddly as the other pets here but that’s easily forgiven since BD-1 can still be cute with all the droid purrs and bleeps he can do along with timid gestures.
6 Boah / Alright Girl / My Horse 2 – Red Dead Redemption 2
There can only be one horse to make room for other species of pets in video games, which admittedly, makes it a difficult choice. There’s Roach in The Witcher 3 or Epona in Tea Legend of Zeldabut the award goes to “Boah” or “alright Girl”—according to Arthur Morgan’s southern accent in Red Dead Redemption 2.
Because Arthur’s horse is whoever the players want them to be. They can even be named anything (but it’s usually My Horse 2 for those who are lazy). It’s just that Arthur prefers to call them “boah,” regardless of the name. In any case, the horse in Red Dead Redemption 2is an endearing one since players can increase their bond with them; they can also die permanently and the players will be left carrying their dead horse’s saddle while weeping back to camp.
5 Dogmeat – Fallout 3
Of course, not to be outdone by cats, dogs are also included here. And when it comes to dog pets in gaming, Dogmeat from Fallout 3 is one of the best. Because a dog’s smile and loyalty is a respite when the world has ended and everything is in ruins.
And Dogmeat’s not just for companionship or cuddliness; he can also fight. In fact, he’s one of the most effective companions in Fallout 3 and even in the succeeding games. Dogmeat’s backstory is also a tragic one; he lost his owner to raiders and thus shares something in common with the players. When not mauling Supermutants and ghouls to death, Dogmeat can even fetch some ammunition and loot for the players.
4 ‘Dog’ – Half-Life 2
‘Dog’ from Half Life 2 isn’t exactly a domesticated canine but a giant robot programmed with a dog’s behavioral patterns. It makes sense in this video game universe because Dog was created by Dr. Eli to guard his daughter Alyx and to keep her company since he’s a busy scientist. It’s safe to say that Dog has fulfilled its purpose for the most part.
It’s not really that hard for him to perform his programmed duty since he’s one of the toughest robots in the game and can even take down alien walker tanks called Striders. And he’s not just loyal to Alyx, Dog also extends this loyalty to Alyx’s friends, so the players get unlimited pets and lifesaver coupons from Dog.
3 Trico – The Last Guardian
Turns out gigantic hybrid beasts also make for awesome pets, hence the entire premise of The Last Guardian. The game’s story is told as a flashback by an old man who recalls how he once formed an unbreakable bond with the unlikeliest creature imaginable.
That would be Trico, of course, who’s an amalgam of many animals but with his size multiplied by 20. Trico is an invaluable pet and companion to the Boy (players) as the latter will need to solve puzzles by leveraging their size differences. Though at times, Trico’s stubbornness can cause some hiccups in the adventure though it doesn’t detract from the beast’s cuteness.
2 Ikaros – Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey
Being an eagle, Ikaros from Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey already has a good advantage compared to other pets. He can fly which makes him a lot faster and more mobile. But that’s only part of what makes Ikaros difficult to replace. Because he’s an in-game mechanic himself.
Ikaros acts as some kind of drone for both Alexios and Kassandra. Somehow, he can link his eyes to either of those demigods and give them a literal bird’s eye view of an area. Ikaros can also mark the enemies and resources to them visible on the mini-map. Props to Ubisoft for adding more context to an in-game mechanic that’s usually taken for granted.
1 Pikachu – Pokemon Yellow
And of course, the most popular rodent in the history of video games (next to Mickey) deserves to be here. Pikachu, specifically the one from Pokemon Yellow is a special one. It’s the same pokemon title derived from the anime. Hence, the Pikachu in the pokemon anime has practically the same personality as this one.
He’s a stubborn and somewhat independent Pokemon who doesn’t want to go into the Pokeball and prefers to be carried by his trainer. So right off the bat, this Pikachu is already an ideal pet. Beyond that, he also refuses to evolve, likely in order to retain his adorable appearance like the vain but lovable rodent he is.
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