Video games have strayed away from being the lonely experience it used to be, at least in terms of gameplay. These days, games offer players with the option of bringing along an NPC companion with them for a large part of their story. Sometimes, these NPC companions do not even need to be human.
Animals serve as some of the best companions in the lives of people, and it stands true even in video games. Certain games allow players to bring along an animal companion, who aids them in a variety of ways throughout the game’s story.
Whether it's mammals, birds or strange unique creatures of the game’s own design, there are many games which allow players to have a pet animal to accompany them on their travels. Here are five such creatures in video games that offer a great sense of support for the player.
Note: This article reflects the writer's opinions.
5 video games that would have been incomplete without the protagonist's animal companions
1. Bullet - Blair Witch
Bloober Team delivered a truly deserving horror experience with Blair Witch, which captured the aesthetic of the original movie of the same name. Players were given control of protagonist Ellis Lynch, who is out in the forest looking for a missing child along with his faithful pet dog Bullet.
Ellis has PTSD and is overwhelmed by visions of the past. Bullet often comes to his rescue, and his presence manages to soothe both the protagonist and the player. Throughout the game, there are times when the pair are attacked by supernatural creatures or come across some horrifying sights. Bullet stays through all of this alongside the player, never letting them feel alone.
Bullet can also be commanded to perform various actions, such as fetching hard-to-reach items, seeking, and staying close. He can also be reprimanded or petted. The player’s relationship with Bullet will determine a few alternatives for the game’s ending, so it is imperative to treat this large-sized pupper as best as possible.
2. Trico - The Last Guardian
An action-adventure puzzle platformer developed by Japan Studio and GenDesign, The Last Guardian follows an unnamed boy who befriends a giant half-bird half-mammal creature known as Trico. Players take control of the boy and are required to explore the area they are in while cooperating with Trico.
The video game uses a very intuitive AI for Trico, making it act like a real world animal, looking both mystified by the human’s actions and willing to aid however it can.
At the beginning of the game, commanding Trico to do specific actions is slow, with Trico being unsure as to what is required of him. But as the bond between the boy and the creature grows, their communication becomes more and more fluent.
As an example of how a creature from a video game stole the hearts of many an animal lover, Trico’s behaviors and expressions are enough to melt hearts. With a well-written narrative that will definitely bring players to tears by the end, this giant fictional creature definitely deserves a hug.
3. Palicos - Monster Hunter
Cat lovers should definitely pick up a Monster Hunter video game as it lets players run around with an anthropomorphic cat that can help them bring down giant monsters five times their size. These cute cat companions can be customized by the player at the start of the game, letting them create the perfect feline that they have always wanted to keep as pets.
Known as Palicos, these are a species of highly intelligent felines who can talk, fight and cook delicious meals. While Palicos also exist independent of hunters, each hunter also has a Palico companion, who can aid them out in the field.
Aside from their adorable looks, Palicos can also assist in combat, heal the player, and snap them out of a stunned state, which makes it very crucial to develop a bond of synergy with their partner. Palicos were first introduced in the very first game, and have been a mainstay of the series.
4. Senu - Assassin’s Creed Origins
When Assassin’s Creed video games first stepped into the RPG genre with Origins, many players were concerned that the series would lose its iconic features. While that did not happen, the game introduced an animal companion as a Bonelli’s eagle known as Senu.
Senu was a stand-in for the eagle vision ability that preceded the older games. Having a friendly relationship with protagonist Bayek, Senu could scout and mark enemies in a large area, while also being able to see other points of interest on the map. The bird was Bayek’s companion throughout the entire game, even saving his life along the way.
This faithful companion can also be upgraded to kill nearby animals for loot, as well as harass enemies to keep them busy for Bayek to sneak up and put a blade in their throat. But the game’s most underrated feature is that Senu will perch on Bayek’s arm if the player stands still long enough. Once this happens, players can pet or feed the bird.
5. Torrent - Elden Ring
Soulsborne fans cannot be grateful enough for Torrent, the faithful steed provided to players at the start of Elden Ring. The first rideable mount featured in a FromSoftware video game, Torrent is supplemented with rich lore just like everything else in the game's world.
Torrent is the first NPC that players see, sniffling at their body before the game starts. Later on, when they are offered a ring whistle that can summon the steed by Melina, as she says that Torrent has chosen the player.
Torrent is an immensely useful companion with its double jump and traversal speeds. While the steed might help players make quick escapes from sticky situations, there are certain boss fights in the open-world that would have been impossible without him. Some dragons would not have been slain if not for the aid of Torrent and his speed in the fight.
Poll : Are you an animal lover?
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