Pets are essential in life. It’s all well and good being a badass superhero and saving the world twice a week, but going home to your fluffiest pal is what makes it all worthwhile. Sometimes these pets even come in pretty handy when saving the world, so, bonus! Below, and in no particular order, are a list of some of the best boys and girls in gaming.
Poochy – Yoshi’s Island
Poochy has been around since the good old days of Yoshi’s Island, where he showed up occasionally to help Yoshi cross a particularly spike-y or lava-y level by ferrying him across any hazards on his back. His interests include running, jumping, following Yoshi, and having feet that are seemingly harder than diamond. He eventually got his own moment in the spotlight in the 3DS version of Yoshi’s Woolly World where he garnered himself a title credit, some levels of his own, and some adorable Poochy-Pups! He is truly a good boy.
Epona – The Legend of Zelda
Being able to communicate only through unintelligible sounds made Epona a natural match for Link, who she bonded with in Ocarina of time. This was presumably due to his unexplained ability to supply infinite carrots, but she’s been by his side in multiple outings since. Her preternatural hearing is matched only by her love for the song penned for her by Malon’s mother, which summons her to Link’s side wherever he might be. As well as this, she can consume a potentially limitless amount of carrots while galloping at full speed. As anyone who has tried it will tell you, that’s actually pretty hard.
Bloodfang Sabretooth – Far Cry Primal
All of the animals in Far Cry are both beautiful and useful once tamed, but the Sabretooth answers everyone’s childhood dreams of owning a cat that’s large enough to ride around on. The Bloodfang Sabretooth is also a stone cold killer, and as such, deserves respect. As well as being the fastest predator in the land of Oros, it can be sent to indiscriminately murder at your command and asks only for some chunks of meat in return. It’s not very stealthy, but you want your enemies to know you’re coming when you burst into their camp throwing spears from atop the back of the beast that killed a host of your countrymen. It also provides the perfect petting experience, receiving a 5/5 in the video above.
Final Fantasy – Chocobos
What’s the main complaint about Ostriches? That they can’t be ridden, and that they’re not handsome enough. Final Fantasy remedies both of those issues with the Chocobo, an animal that can literally run across oceans. While primarily bred for racing and use as transport, Chocobos aren’t afraid to charge into battle either, barreling into enemies and using their powerful kicks and massive talons to devastating effect. Plus without them you’d never have been able to get Knights of the Round materia, immediately halving how enjoyable the game is. Wark!
D-Dog – Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
D.D. is the proud recipient of the award for the most likable character with the least confusing back story of anyone in the Metal Gear series. After being found by Big Boss wandering the wilds in Afghanistan and airlifted back to his offshore platform, D.D. (or Diamond Dog), proceeds to become the most useful companion ever to be found in a video game. His many skills include marking nearby enemies, flying them out of the battlefield on balloons, doing sick backflips, and also slitting people’s throats with his own tiny knife. He comes in a variety of colours and has several different outfits, each of which are outstandingly cute, even when soaked in blood. 12/10 would take into battle.
Pokémon – Pokémon
This one’s kind of a no-brainer, right? There are hundreds of them, a vast majority of which are cuter than the mind can possibly comprehend. They do all sorts of stuff, from acting as construction workers to providing medical care to creating the entire universe and bending space/time to their whims. A couple of caveats, many of them could easily kill you and some are almost definitely tortured souls. But just look at it’s little bow tie!
So those are some of the cutest pals in gaming. Honourable mentions go to Dogmeat from Fallout, Bloodwing from Borderlands, Blob from A Boy and His Blob, and the fish from Mass Effect 2 and 3. You are all very good girls/boys/sentient amorphous blobs.