Animals are some of the best friends you can have, both in life and in video games.
A good animal companion can literally change your entire gameplay experience. They’ll charge into battle with you, point you towards loot and clues and are always up for a good pat (assuming the developers let you pet the dog).
They are truly the MVPs of video games and to demonstrate that here are seven of the best.
Rooster (Far Cry 6)
Far Cry 6 isn’t even out yet but the new rooster companion is already the best thing about the game. I mean, look at his majesty.
— Ubisoft (@Ubisoft) June 22, 2021
The Far Cry series has a history of excellent animal friends, to the point I’d say they may have even redefined the concept of AI companions. Far Cry Primal kicked off the idea of beast taming and the series has never looked back.
You’re never alone when you’ve got a fangs-for-hire at your side. Cheeseburger will dispose of those cultists for you, Horatio will ride through the apocalyptic wasteland at your side, and there’s a whole roster of good boys waiting for pats with Timber, Boomer, and the adorable Chorizo.
I’d die for all of them (and have in the game, many times) but I cannot wait to die for Chicharrón, his with spiked collar and beak piercing.
Daxter (Jak and Daxter)
While he may have technically started as a human there is hardly a more annoying animal sidekick than Daxter.
Daxter’s life was changed after he fell into a vat of dark eco and transformed into the fictional ottsel (half otter, half weasel).
He is a consistent presence throughout the Jak and Daxter series, usually as comic relief with terribly cheesy pick up lines. Still, Daxter will point you in the right direction from time to time. And even though Naughty Dog may have dropped the ‘Daxter’ part of the name in the Jak sequels, the furry ottsel clearly did something right to get his own spin-off.
Mr Chew (Borderlands 3)
Borderlands 3 features a whole range of alien creatures, but you can gain the loyalty of one Mr Chew if you choose FL4K, the beastmaster, as your loadout.
Doing this will grant you control of a guard skag, with the default name of Mr Chew. He can do some really neat tricks like vomiting acid onto your enemies and barfing up ammo and weapons at random times. What a good boy.
Look, it’s slim pickings in Borderlands but he’s a far better companion than Claptrap.
Dogmeat (Fallout 4)
The loyal Dogmeat has been a staple throughout the Fallout franchise, but he really peaked in Fallout 4.
He can fetch, he can attack, he can be dressed up in crazy costumes and he will love you unconditionally. Dogmeat is the ultimate post-apocalypse companion and you won’t regret taking him along for the ride in Fallout 4.
Kids around the world have dreamed of having their own Pokémon since the late 90s, ever since Ash Ketchum made a new best friend in Pikachu.
Pikachu symbolises one of the best animal-human friendships in pop culture history and he makes a damn good Pokémon to have in your roster. But the bottom line is that running around with any Pokémon in a video game is simply the best.
Roach (The Witcher 3)
We all know Roach is the real MVP of The Witcher.
A good horse companion is one you can never take for granted. Roach shows up at Geralt’s beck and call and takes youto that far away spot on the map far quicker than our protagonist could run.
Shout out to all the video games horses, particularly Roach.
Goose (Untitled Goose Game)
The Goose isn’t just any animal companion, he is his own companion. Legit you can play co-op in Untitled Goose Game now and gain your own goose friend.
While two geese are better than one, the Goose deserves a place on this list just for being one of the most epically horrible animal characters in video game history. It singlehandedly brings a village to its knees with absolutely no remorse and it’s a joy to be part of.
Goose is the MVP of all animal MVPs.
Did we miss your favourite animal companion? Give a shout out to your MVP in the comments.