Not every game just hands you some superpowers and tells you to do your worst. No, some games provide friendly characters to help you out. Sometimes it works, but sometimes it doesn't. Here are the five best and five worst sidekicks of all time. You can tell me why I'm wrong in the comments section.
5. The Weighted Companion Cube (Portal)
It's amazing how the designers of Portal managed to get players to invest so much in an inanimate object. By the time you're given the cube, you're frazzled and friendless, so you fall in love—and when it's time to say goodbye, your heart sinks a little. I'm not big into video game merchandise, but the instant I dumped this buddy of mine into an incinerator, I knew I had to have it back. Thanks to a Christmas gift from my brother, I now have a stuffed replica on my living room couch.
4. Yoshi (Super Mario World)
As I'll explain below, Luigi was never a good sidekick for Mario—and though the idea of Yoshi had been floating around Nintendo for years, it wasn't until Super Mario World that the company gave its plump plumber a worthy friend. Yoshi ate enemies, and extra Yoshi eggs contained 1-Ups. And best of all, he's a dinosaur.
3. Dogmeat (Fallout series)
The best aspect of Dogmeat in the original Fallout was practical: Unlike your other companions, he didn't carry a gun, and therefore he couldn't shoot you in the face by accident. Instead, he contented himself with running up to armed assailants and mauling them. As the Fallout series matured, so did its portrayal of Dogmeat, and by the end he had a real personality. Every boy—and every post-apocalyptic adventurer—needs a dog.
2. Launchpad McQuack (DuckTales)
In the NES game DuckTales, this guy was the bomb. He helped you through rough parts and took you to secret levels. While you could only use him once a level, it was always a relief to see his face.
1. HK-47 (Knights of the Old Republic)
For those of us who prefer our sidekicks light on the empathy and heavy on the humor, HK-47, the protocol droid from KOTOR, is perfect. When you find him, his memory is gone, so he promptly imprints on you—you become his boss, and he refers to everyone else as "meatbags." I'm not sure it makes sense to call a robot a "psychopath," but HK-47 basically is one, and his dialogue is hilarious.