The 10 Greatest Video Game Pets of All-Time

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Riley Call of Duty Video Game Pets Look to any major video game franchise these days, and you're likely to find one thing: every hero, no matter how powerful or wise, relies on others to help achieve their mission. And sometimes, those allies are furrier than others. As game developers have sought to increase player investment, no method has proved more effective than giving players their very own pet. Whether it be a creature attainable in the real world or a figment of imagination, these companion creatures have carved out spaces in our gaming history, and our hearts. Whether furred, feathered, or scaled, here's our list of The 10 Greatest Video Game Pets.

Rush, 'Mega Man'

Greatest Video Game Pets Mega Man Rush As Mega Man has come to represent an entire genre of video game, it stands to reason that the developers at Capcom would recognize that the title character's dog would need to be similarly groundbreaking. So in Mega Man 3, the hero's trusty robotic dog, Rush, was introduced with the special ability to help launch his master high into the air, or become a form on trasnportation, either as a hoverboard or a submarine. That alone made the robo-dog cooler than any other we'd met in real life, and as a result, Rush has become a series mainstay. Rush's various special abilities over the years haven't all been winners, but his ability to bring the best traits of a loyal dog and a transforming robot to life make him a truly unique entry on our list.

Battle Dragon, 'Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon'

Far Cry 3 Battle Dragon Video Game Pet While the titular Blood Dragons that populated the environments of this Far Cry 3 expansion(?) were seriously lethal, they were no match for the robotic version players were allowed to pilot into the game's climax. Officially titled the 'Battle Armored Dragon Assault Strike System' (B.A.D.A.S.S.) the creature puts his brethren to shame. Equipped with a 'Terror 4000 Cannon' and titanium plating, the dragon is as invincible as any child of the 1980s could imagine it to be. Since the Battle Dragon can only be operated by one bearing the Killstar - possessed by the game's hero when first encountered - it's correct to call the creature a pet, since Rex 'Power' Colt is its master. A post-apocalyptic hellscape is something no sane person would wish to endure. But if this being were at our disposal, we'd consider it.

D0g, 'Half-Life 2'

Video Game Pets Half Life 2 Dog One wouldn't think that a video game series shaped around a silent hero and theoretical physics to be best known for its characters, but as is usually the case, when Valve gets around to making a game they tend to make history as well. Such is the case with 'D0g.' Although the robotic creature is the pet of Alyx Vance, not Gordon Freeman, there are few who have played through the Half-Life 2 series who don't have a soft spot for the mechanical companion. Possessing the loyalty and temperament of its namesake, D0g is deadlier than any flesh-and-blood creature could ever be. He may have begun his life as a small protector of Vance, but thanks to her additions and refinements, the towering pet is nearly invincible, not to mention fearless. But its his loyalty we most remember (and his car-throwing).

Dogmeat, 'Fallout'

Video Game Pets Dogmeat Fallout There's no greater asset a lone wanderer of a post-apocalyptic landscape can have than a loyal dog, and as the Fallout series has progressed over time, so too has the hero's pooch - affectionately dubbed 'Dogmeat.' Making his first appearance in the original game as a companion who would follow the player, it wasn't until the sequel that Dogmeat agreed to follow his master's commands, and was able to attack multiple targets if they presented a threat to either. But the dog met his true potential in Fallout 3, first found avenging his deceased master by attacking those who killed him. Once adopted by the player's 'Lone Wanderer,' Dogmeat will assist him in combat, seek out supplies, and above all, provide a well-needed nuzzle along his trying mission.

Epona, 'The Legend of Zelda'

Video Game Pets Epona Legend of Zelda There are plenty of reasons why The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is still considered one of the greatest games ever made; the strong story, timeless gameplay mechanics, and even gruelling temples that haunt players' dreams to this day. But Link's fearless horse is absolutely one of them. Setting aside the speed and leaping that Epona brought once unlocked, the relationship between Link and his trusty flaxen Belgian goes much deeper. Answering only to her master's song, and carrying him into combat and across Hyrule, Epona was also able to endure any physical attack thrown at her. In his realm, Link is simply without peer. But when push comes to shove, there's only one trusted companion he's sure to call upon.

Chocobo 'Final Fantasy'

Video Game Pets Chocobo Final Fantasy It seems that steeds or mounts are somewhat of a given in the realm of role-playing fantasies, but as was the case with most of the Final Fantasy series, the developers decided to put a twist on the usual animals. In Final Fantasy II, players could saddle up and take a trip not on horses, but 'Chocobos'; large, birds capable of sprinting at impressive speeds. The creatures were used primarily as a gameplay conceit to begin with, but soon became so embraced by fans, the feathered pets became a staple of the series. Few pets on our list have gone on to become something of a mascot for their franchise, but the mighty Chocobo has lasted. Not bad for a bird that can't even fly (most of the time, anyway).

Dog, 'Fable 2'

Video Game Pets Fable 2 Dog The realm of role-playing games has long been one filled with vast promises: open worlds, human relationships, and commitment to simulating every aspect of reality. So when Peter Molyneux promised that Fable 2 would teach gamers how to love, many took the claim as exaggeration. Then we played it. The love Molyneux spoke of can be seen in the human marriages, relationships, or children made possible in the game, but the one bond all players share is that between their player and their trusty dog. Whether playing with children, performing tricks, or simply frolicking ahead of its master, Fable 2's Dog remains one of the best simulated we've encountered. Its species is hailed as 'man's best friend,' and over the course of the game, this pup lived up to the title.

Yoshi, 'Super Mario World'

Yoshi Super Mario Video Game Sidekicks With Super Mario World taking Nintendo's moustachioed mascot into a new era of platforming, the developers decided that he was in need of a new companion. Specifically, an animal that Mario could not only ride, but one that could assist him in combat. Thus, Yoshi was born - a green-skinned, tongue-launching dinosaur possessing a saddle perfect for adventuring plumbers... and a pair of boots we still can't quite explain. With his pet Yoshi, Mario became more durable than ever, and a permanent character was added to his franchise's roster. Since then, Yoshi's re-designs have made him far too human a character for the term 'pet' to apply, but that's how started his life. And that origin alone makes him one of the greatest game pets ever conceived.

Pikachu, 'Pokemon'

Greatest Video Game Pets Pikachu Pokemon It's hard to pick a single creature from the Pokémon universe as greater than any other; since the games have seen no fewer than hundreds of the creatures pass through their midst. But even if every player who spends time simulating the career of an amateur Pokémon Trainer has their favorites, one has come to represent the franchise as whole. Pikachu may pack a more shocking punch than his adorable coloring and facial features would imply, but there's no denying that his personality, not his lethality, is what makes him the ideal representative of Nintendo's franchise based almost solely on acquiring pets. Some Pokémon are fiercely loyal and cute to boot, but lack ferocity in combat. Others are forces to be reckoned with, but more indifferent than we'd like. Pikachu is the best of both worlds.

Agro, 'Shadow of the Colossus'

Video Game Pets Agro Shadow Colossus Few games embody solitude like Team Ico's epic Shadow of the Colossus, but paradoxically, the game possesses one of the most emotionally potent partnerships that its console generation ever witnessed (something the studio has proved particularly skilled at). In this case, the line between the player's character (Wander) and his steed (Agro) is as blurred as possible, with the trusted horse relied upon to take down more than one of the titular colossi. Despite her name, Agro showed a calm loyalty that spoke volumes, and exhibited a sacrifice that is still etched in the memory of all who played. In all honesty, calling Agro a 'pet' is selling her short. Even so, her place among gaming's greatest is beyond debate.


Black and White Creatures Video Game Pets There you have it: Game Rant's 10 Greatest Video Game Pets. There's no question that these creatures have plenty of colleagues when considering the sheer number of pets, sidekicks and companions the video game industry has seen. Which video game pets are most treasured to you? Was it due to personal investment, or simply the wealth of gameplay options they offered? Leave us your thoughts in the comments. - Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.