With the release of Red Dead Redemption 2 and all 100GB of it finally installing on our systems, many hours will be spent adventuring across vast, open lands on horseback, living the life of a western outlaw. Now I don’t own a horse or have even ridden on one but looking back, I realise I have played a surprising amount of games involving horses. So, in no particular order, here are my favourite video game horses:
Epona (The Legend of Zelda)
Epona is, without a doubt, the most recognisable and popular horse in gaming history. Not many animals can compare to her fearlessness and trusted friendship, constantly coming to Link’s aide, bringing the duo to the end of Hyrule and back many times over.
Epona is also an absolute treat to explore with. It is hard to recapture that feeling of freedom after she was given to Link at the Lon Lon Ranch. Allowing for an enjoyable and effortless traversal of the vast fields of Hyrule.
Ever since Ocarina of Time, Epona is Link’s partner in nearly all the Zelda games and is very much a notable miss when she isn’t.
Shadowmere (The Elder Scrolls)
Shadowmere is arguably the strongest horse across all open-world RPGs. The iconic look of a dark coat and intimidating red eyes instantly lets everyone know you are not one to be messed around with. Especially when it comes to fighting, as Shadowmere is an invaluable sidekick who can more than hold her own.
Riding around on Shadowmere is an unbelievable experience, one only likened to riding a horse in real life. She has similar traits in that she jumps and gallops around with the poise and arrogance of a sophisticated beast, as well as doing the extraordinary in having the uncanny ability for jumping off and scaling mountains.
Whilst Shadowmere may not have the greatest of personalities, she is an incredible asset who you will not want to travel without.
Agro (Shadow of the Colossus)
Wander’s sole companion throughout the entirety of the game. This devoted horse shows that she is more than just a companion, but an extremely loyal friend. Facing huge threat after huge threat in dangerous locations, just to help Wander overcome the colossi.
Agro is dedicated to Wander by always sticking by his side throughout the plains of the Forbidden Land. The true friendly nature of Agro is shown through her willingness to be communicated with and petted.
You quickly learn that there is a strong and long-lasting bond between these two, especially as Agro’s traits help in battle. Her speed helps Wander, on several occasions, to stay away from harm as well as keeping pace with faster enemies.
Agro is more than just a companion, but a key part of the story and a protagonist in her own right.
Roach (The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt)
Roach is the name given to all of Geralt’s horses. But this Roach is truly unique and anything but just another imitator. This horse is customisable with a variety of saddles and horse blinders, each giving Geralt some sort of benefit. Roach is clearly very versatile and beneficial, so much so that he is the only horse Geralt has throughout the game.
I have found myself playing the game just to roam around on horseback, discovering random missions and side quests as opposed to going directly to them. Not to mention the horse racing and other activities you can do alongside Roach.
Roach is the type of animal to head straight into danger, just like Geralt himself. And is one of the best horse companions in recent video games.
Death (Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare)
This mythical beast is part of The Four Horses of the Apocalypse collective. Death has a displeasing ghoulish look, with a two-toned black/white coat and a pale white air behind it. Putting the “mare” in nightmare, giving a terrifying presence in horrifying the old western era of Red Dead Redemption.
The nightmarish horse can be difficult to find and tame. But it is a joy to control, especially as you leave a trail of destruction behind you. Death is pretty much invincible, and extremely dangerous in battle with an ability to kill anything in its path. On top of this, Death is loaded with extra stamina and health. All this helps to make Death the ultimate weaponised companion.
What are your favourite video game horses? Let us know in the comments below!
Covers all things nerdy, which if you’re reading this, makes perfect sense.
When he isn’t raging on the PlayStation, you can catch him following the mighty Liverpool FC and re-watching Scrubs for the umpteenth time.