Companions or sidekicks are integral in any narrative. While the main character is usually under the spotlight, a companion is there keeping the character alive, providing hints and tips to the player, or providing some much needed comedic relief when necessary. Here is the NextPlay Team’s list of best companions in video games!
Ellie Williams (The Last of Us)
The character of Ellie, as a side character, revolutionised the whole dynamic of storytelling and how developers can tell powerful stories via their characters. Not just from a gameplay pov but also from world building and perspective. It was awesome to play as someone so central and important to the game while being so down-to-earth and relatable.
Garrus (Mass Effect Trilogy)
Mass Effect is one of my favorite gaming franchises of all time and playing it multiple times ive gotten to know most of the team mates and romances across the many years its been out. But the one constant in all of the games and one I didn’t initially click with was Garrus.
Garrus to me at the start was that stick in the mud goodie too shoes in the first game of the series, but over time he became more then just your marksman looking over your shoulder through combat. He became a close and personal friend over the three titles in the series. Sticking with you as a team member in all throughout the trilogy really gave you time to get to know the man as a cop trying to prove hiself to someone who whould go to the ends of the galaxy with you to save it. I was never more proud then on that last march then to have Garrus by my side.
Drippy (Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch)
What I wouldn’t give to have a sassy, to-the-point, Scottish sidekick helping me get through life and offering me brutally honest advice?
Drippy, the proclaimed Lord High Lord of the Fairies, is one of the most adorable and hilarious sidekicks I have ever encountered in a video game. His little catchphrases and outbursts never get old! I would have completed the game in half the time if I didn’t have to pull myself together after the majority of Mr Drippy’s cutscenes.
He’s just proper tidy, innit?
Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Uncharted Series)
Naughty Dog’s Uncharted series are some of the best games I have ever played, with Uncharted 2: Among Thieves polling in my top three games of all time. Playing as the main character, the beloved treasure hunter Nathan Drake. You will not only go in search of world-famous lost treasure, you will also have to deal with bandits and those who intend to get to the treasure first, with any means necessary. Nate would not be alive today to tell his stories if it wasn’t for his friend, mentor, and father figure, Victor “Sully” Sullivan.
With his slicked-back grey hair, moustache, and a never-ending supply of cigars, he is voiced deeply and fantastically by Richard McGonagle throughout the series. He also provides the perfect side companionship for Nathan Drake. Nate is the younger, more agile and robust of the two, while Sully is the more stylish, with years of treasure-hunting experience, but seemingly always having his own best interest at heart. You experience this early on in the games where the advice taken from Sully leads you to some misfortunes when you encounter the people that Sully has money debts with and are also now after the same treasure Nate is seeking. These kinds of things result in getting shot at by loads of enemies on trains, planes and other over-the-top scenes. He has also been known on some occasions to fake his own death and randomly go into cahoots with the enemy.
Despite saying all the above, Sully does care deeply for Nate and cares for him as a father would a son. With his womanizing habits, he is very sarcastic at times and has a straight to the point in your, in-your-face attitude. If you put all this in a bowl, mix it up and put it in the oven to cook, you will pull out a finely tuned sidekick that I wouldn’t swap for anyone in the Uncharted series.
While Nathan Drake has the leading role, without Sully being present, the game’s story, humour and death scenes would not have had the same effect on me.
Elizabeth (Bioshock: Infinite)
BioShock Infinite is a fantastic game, which somehow captured the intense atmosphere of Rapture, but in an entirely new setting, as players explore the city in the sky known as Columbia. BioShock Infinite was made even more special thanks to the fantastic character of Elizabeth, played superbly by Courtnee Draper.
Her innocence, playful nature, and kindness are all infectious, and you want to protect her at all costs. But Elizabeth is no damsel in distress, she has the ability to rip tears in reality and deliver destructive power from the realities within. Her evolution throughout Infinite helps enhance the entire experience, with Elizabeth stepping away from her companion origins to become the main character of the amazing two-part DLC, known as Burial at Sea.
Daxter (Jak and Daxter Series)
Daxter is the quirky and hilarious sidekick every adventure game needs. Despite the deep trauma of falling into a vat of dark eco and turning into an ottsel, Daxter is always there to spit a one-liner upon death. Jak II gave the series a darker approach compared to the first entry in the series, but Daxter manages to juxtapose that with great comedic timing and never taking anything too seriously. You just can’t imagine Jak without Daxter.
Sparx (Spyro The Dragon Series)
A dragon and a dragonfly being the best of friends would never be on my bingo card, but Spyro and Sparx are like bread and butter. Sparx is always there for his fire-breathing friend, usually indicating a health meter, collecting gems and providing dialogue in the form of “bzzzt, bzzzt, bzzt”. Sparx even got his own levels in Spyro: Year of the Dragon, which were super fun!
One of the most frustrating but lovable characters in a Zelda game. With her iconic ‘hey listen,’ the effervescent fairy was extremely integral to Link’s adventure. She was critical to the gameplay as she is main target lock on for your enemies. Nintendo made an iconic gaming experience with Navi that stands the test of time.
Torgal (Final Fantasy XVI)
Torgal is the best doggo a Clive could ask for. In Final Fantasy XVI we see Torgal as a puppy as well as the heroic and loyal companion that fights alongside Clive for most of the game. He saves Clive’s and his friend’s lives more than once during the main questline of FFXVI without hesitation. Torgal has some heartwarming moments during the game that lends him to being one of the best furry companions in video games.
Special shoutout to Dogmeat from Fallout 4!
Midna (The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess)
Midna is my favourite companion in The Legend of Zelda series. When we first meet Midna, she taunts Link for turning into Wolf Link, but as the story progresses, you watch the relationship between the two blossom.
Unlike most of Link’s companions, who usually just provide tips and hints, Midna assists Link in battle. The end of Twilight Princess has one of the most riveting and emotional moments in the franchise, and it’s all because of Midna.
So that’s our list of 10 of the best companions In video games! Did we miss your favourite companion or sidekick? Share yours in the comments below!