Animal Companions / Wild Cohorts

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There may have been a previous appeal for this but I couldn't find it.

I would be really pleased if the Wild Cohort rules (from the Wizards site) appeared in the PHB. Having a loyal animal may not interest everyone but I think they would be great.

For those playing in smaller groups they are highly usefull for keeping guard at night, helping protect the flanks. Companion dogs can maybe track (if you don't have a party tracker), companion horses will come when whistled for (Zorro needs Tornado to escape many times).

Maybe it could done as a talent tree open to everyone so characters could choose to improve the companion in the way they wish. Druids or rangers could have extra bonuses (or things only open to them) in this talent tree.

I prefer 1 player, 1 character with a maximum of 1 companion (whether it's an animal, henchman, sidekick, butler, or familiar). If there only two players then 1 or both could have a retinue or play the Beastmaster! with 3 or 4 animal sidekicks.
It should be as accessible as Leadership, though to be clear I think Leadership needs tougher pereq, and/or more cost. The feat to gain an animal companion should have some sort of prerequisite, maybe Handle Animal as a trained skill?

I also think that Rangers should start with their animal companions and use the same progression as Druids.

Oh, and Obtain Familiar can stay too, why not?