The dog which inspired ‘Fallout 4”s Dogmeat has passed away

We're not crying, honest

Game developer Joel Burgess confirmed today that River, the dog who inspired Dogmeat the fan-favourite companion in Fallout 4, has passed away.

Burgess announced the news in a post on Twitter earlier today (July 27) stating that he had “said goodbye today to River.”

River, who was a German Shepard, was the basis of Fallout 4’s Dogmeat companion. Dogmeat accompanied the player throughout Fallout 4, acting as a friend and an ally in combat.

Burgess went on to tweet about River’s involvement in development, and how she was more than just a reference point for the team.

The developer discussed how River’s real-world behaviour towards him affected the design of the companion. In real life, River would walk ahead of Burgess, but would continue to check back to make sure he was there. This is something Dogmeat also does in Fallout 4.

River also enjoyed making people happy, and would regularly bring people large objects. This inspired item-fetching and seeking in the game, as Dogmeat would fetch items for the player.

Fallout 4 is an action role-playing game set in a vast apocalyptic wasteland. The game was released in 2015, and featured Dogmeat throughout pre-release promotional materials.

Burgess and the team looked into hiring a professional dog to help with the development of Dogmeat. However, when River started visiting the office, it became clear to the team that she was the perfect fit for the character.

Burgess finished the tweet threat by describing how Dogmeat loves the player, signing off with the lines: “And if love is River’s legacy, I am contented. Rest in peace, big girl.”

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