The Top Dozen Birds In Gaming (And How They Taste)

by Jeff Cork on Nov 25, 2013 at 09:44 AM

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.

That White Bird (Angry Birds)
Angry Birds' roster is filled with birds, but that white bird sticks out. It can drop an egg on cue – an explosive egg, no less – and then continue to careen around levels. That makes him the best. It's not even close, glass-breaking bluebirds, so stop bugging us already.

What would it taste like?
The other white meat.

Gold Chocobo (Final Fantasy VII)
The gold chocobo was a tremendous pain to unlock in Final Fantasy VII. You had to race and breed the creatures for hours, and were eventually rewarded with a bird that could run across the ocean. The bigger payoff was unlocking the Knights of the Round summon, which was the most powerful one in the game.

What would it taste like?
A disappointing, dried-out catastrophe.

Hawks (Ninja Gaiden)
These guys were the worst. They'd boomerang toward you, and would regenerate if you scrolled the screen backward. And if they connected one of their attacks, they'd knock you back, too. And guess what? That would start the whole crappy ordeal all over again.

What would it taste like?
We wouldn't eat it. We'd just tenderize the hell out of it with our tires and then slam it into the garbage.

Cucco (The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past)
These might look like chickens, but there are some notable differences between the Hyrulian creature and the birds that we're all familiar with. They'll swarm you if you attack one with a sword. Next, they'll... and... or... er...hmm. OK, they're basically chickens. Sorry about that.

What would it taste like?
It's on the tip of our tongues. Some kind of bird.

Garbage-Can Turkey (Final Fight)
Guy, Haggar, and Cody are gross dudes. They will eat food out of garbage cans, including an entire turkey. That's not the worst part. Not only will they eat gum that a cop spits out, but they like it so much that it replenishes their health. Suddenly, garbage-can turkey seems like the food of kings.

What would it taste like?
Turkey, with slight notes of newspaper, coffee grounds, and garbage slop.

Larry Bird (Dr. J vs. Larry Bird)
Sorry, Dr. J, we only have eyes for your opponent. 

What would it taste like?
First of all, Mr. Bird is not an "it." HE would taste like pork. Or so we have heard. Don't call the police.