The game: Secret of Evermore The master: The boy How he served: We’ve seen a lot of dogs so far. But none of them were loyal enough to break through the barriers of space, time and logic, to follow his master like the one in Secret of Evermore. Your dimensional-hopping dog would change forms as he accompanied you through the game’s Prehistoric, Antiqua, Gothic, and Omnitopia areas in the mysterious land of Evermore.
Unlike most in-game canines, the dog in Secret of Evermore actually did most of the physical fighting while your main character focused on using his alchemy skills. The dog’s many forms included a prehistoric cave dog and a poodle. But his coolest form kicked in when you visited Omnitopia and found that he became a walking cyber-pup.
Factoid: Secret of Evermore was the first Squaresoft game that was developed in North America.
Above: In Secret of Evermore, your dog looks like a poodle in one zone and a walking toaster in another
The game: Mega Man 3 The master: Mega Man How he served: If it wasn’t for Rush, you’d still be stuck behind a wall that was just a little too tall for you to jump over. Thanks to this useful ally, Mega Man reaped in the benefits of the Rush Coil, Rush Marine, and Rush Jet, allowing him to overcome Dr. Wily’s otherwise insurmountable obstacles.
Worthless cat: Mega Man V for the Game Boy introduced Tango, an inferior feline version of Rush.
The game: Half-Life 2 The master: Alyx Vance How he served: What’s better than a dog? A giant robot dog! Alyx Vance’s pet Dog helped Gordon Freeman escape a ton of tough situations in the Half-Life 2 series. Designed as a way to teach you how to use the Gravity Gun, your first encounter with Dog was spent playing catch with a huge hunk of heavy metal.
Dog broke down walls, pulled you out of rubble, and followed you around during many scenes in the Half-Life 2 series. But he did one thing that the other dogs on this list didn’t. He sacrificed his life for you by throwing himself at a giant Combine Synth, making him the Jesus Christ of in-game dogs.
Above: The award for the best canine companion goes to Dog for his valiant sacrifice. Rest in peace digital dog
Tangent: In 2005, Boston Dynamics created a robot dog for the US military, which they named BigDog. It was designed to carry equipment across rough terrain and was able to carry 340 pounds. You can see some video of this impressive – yet creepy – invention in the video below.
Above: BigDog can climb steep hills and will keep on walking even if some jerk is kicking him. But can it play catch?
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