We'll give the turkey a little break this week as we approach Thanksgiving. The gaming world is filled with a number of avian companions and foes that we can focus on instead. In the effort to broaden the conversation beyond bone-in or boneless, here are 12 notable winged creatures and our thoughts on how they might go over as the main dish.

Bloodwing (Borderlands)
Mordecai's lightly feathered companion is the hunter's best friend and secret weapon. Bloodwing's a great tool for distracting enemies, and it can even provide valuable healing effects with the proper skill trees active. Mordecai is unfortunately better at tracking and defeating enemies than he is at naming best pals and secret weapons. "Bloodwing" is actually the name of the creature's species, which is effectively the same as naming a dog "Dog." And yes, we know that since Bloodwing is from another planet it's not technically a bird. This is our list, however, so it counts.

What would it taste like? 
Probably not great. Bloodwing looks like he's part lizard, so we'd expect him to be simultaneously stringy and rubbery. Imagine a gamier version of a store-brand, skim-milk string cheese, and you're on the right track.

Songbird (BioShock Infinite)
Songbird is a big, scary creature that acts as an overprotective guardian to Elizabeth in BioShock Infinite. It's a melding of man and machine, but it has wings – clearly making it a bird for the purposes of our list. Did we mention that we're not zoologists? We aren't. Look at him, though. It's totally a bird, right?

What would it taste like? 
Whatever it tastes like, it ain't going to be great. We'd expect that there are tubes filled with hydraulic fluid and other nasty things coursing throughout this dude's body, so you'd need to be careful carving it. Keep a bottle of ketchup nearby.

Cutrus (8 Eye's)
The NES game 8 Eye's starred a guy named Orin and his falcon, Cutrus. The pair had to navigate a post-apocalyptic world and retrieve eight gems from eight castles across the world. Cutrus proved to be an invaluable ally, and players could send him out to rush enemies. No, it was nothing like Borderlands.

What would it taste like?
According to some New Orleans Saints fans, Falcon tastes just like Dolphin. That could be a sports thing, though. Realistically, Cutrus probably tastes like chicken, seasoned with a healthy shake or two of regret.


Birdo (Super Mario Bros. 2)
People have been arguing about Birdo's sex for decades now. The more pressing concern for the purposes of this list is: Is Birdo a bird? Let's see. Pink. No visible wings. Shoots eggs from fleshy snout. Is named "Birdo." Sounds like a bird to us.

What would it taste like?
Cotton candy, but not in a good way.

Beat (Mega Man 5)
Mega Man was accompanied by a little friend named Beat starting with Mega Man 5. Players could call on the creature to attack enemies, which he'd do presumably using his sharp metal beak. This is how birds work in video games, apparently.

What would it taste like?
He's a robot, dummy! You're going to chip your dang teeth doing that!

Kazooie (Banjo-Kazooie)
Sitting in a backpack while your friend does all the work? Kazooie knows what's up. Sure, she helped his bear buddy out by flying around so they could reach platforms, but Kazooie was generally a passenger. 

What would it taste like?
Fried chicken. Banjo's backpack would be a perfect Shake N Bake vessel.