Internet hero blows up TikTok for saving poor Nintendogs

A collage of two photos of the puppies found in the game and a photo of the old cart found by Ben.

ImageNintendo / BennyPVideos / Kotaku

Last month, Ben was driving home from a concert on the last train when he noticed a strange little black object on the floor. It turned out to be a straggler Nintendogs DS game cartridge. When he got home, he put it to work and discovered two lost puppies in the game. His story of saving these abandoned digital dogs then went viral on TikTok.

Known as Bennyp video on TikTok, Ben’s story of finding lost programmable puppies on a train has racked up a combined 640k views on the video platform. In the three videos that tell his story of discovering and rescuing these two doggies, you can see that many viewers are asking for more updates and details. So Kotaku strike to get them. It is a story that is connected to many and it all happened by accident.

Nintendogs is a pet simulation franchise from, you guessed it, Nintendo. Released on the DS and 3DS between 2006 and 2011, players feed, train, and care for digital puppies using the handheld console’s touchscreen, microphone, and stylus. Players also need to feed and clean the puppies, and if left alone, they will miss their owner or become bored. It’s like a much more fun and exciting twist on a Tamagotchi

“It was a Saturday night and I was driving high with maybe a few beers too many in my system, sitting on my last train home and mindlessly flipping through my phone,” Ben recalled. Kotaku via email: “I wasn’t feeling very well, so put my phone down and stared around the carriage for a while. My eyes fell on a little black square under a row of seats near me and I thought: ‘Huh, it looks like a DS game.’”

Finally, his curiosity won out and he pulled out his phone to… record that he finds it and picks it up, especially as a joke to send to his friends. As he got closer, he realized it was indeed a DS cartridge. He “melted” the moment a little longer by not turning it right away, and when he did, he was shocked to see an old beat-up and forgotten copy of Nintendogs for the Nintendo DS.

“I was so busy filming the thing I found that I almost missed my stop,” Ben admitted.

Once he got home, and after he had recovered from his night out, it took a few more days before he had enough free time to tinker with his newly discovered DS game. Luckily his old Nintendo DS had some charge left, so he grabbed it and popped it out Nintendogs in the console. But as seen in his second TikTok video documenting the discovery, the game didn’t work. Nothing happened when plugged in. The DS didn’t even recognize the cart at all. As a longtime video and content creator, he then realized that this could be a fun story.

“I filmed the trial and error of trying to get the game up and running for maybe 15 minutes before turning to the internet for advice,” explains Ben. A quick search led him in the right direction, and he used some cotton swabs and rubbing alcohol to clean the rear slots of the DS cartridge, which appear incredibly dirty in the TikTok video. After some more work and experimenting with different cleaning methods, he decided to give the game another chance, put it back in his DS, boot up the console and… it worked! “The surprise in my voice says it all,” Ben said. “So, so satisfying.”

Once it worked, he discovered two digital puppies sleeping inside: Tyson and Enzo. He also found out that their previous owner, Sean, didn’t spend much time with the two dogs, but it’s impossible to know if Sean intended to leave them alone or how long they had been separated. Regardless, Ben fed and cleaned both puppies and played with them with every toy available in the game. The next day, Ben tried to restart the game. But to his horror, the cart stopped working again. Fortunately, a little more cleaning and rebooting got it working again and he was able to walk the puppies.

Now comes the question of what the future holds. According to Ben, no one has come forward to claim to be or know the previous owner, Sean. Ben told Kotaku that some people have offered to take the puppies off his hands, but for now he’s holding onto them, working on his own “underground investigation” to find Sean, assuming the owner even wants these dogs back.

Read more: Leave Nintendogs Found alive after almost 10 years

According to Ben, he never expected this random video to go viral on TikTok. After sending the first videos to his friends and not getting much response, he decided to use his newly created TikTok account to share his saga online. The combination of Ben’s slick montage, cute pups and Nintendogs/DS nostalgia seems to be a winner on TikTok.

He also didn’t expect some people to share their own stories about unearthing ancient copies of Nintendogs to say goodbye to their former digital pets and give them much-needed love all these years later.

“I think I’ve created a lot of guilt in some people because I realized that their… Nintendogs have been in the attic for ten years now,” says Ben. “And listen, I’m no saint. I also had a copy of the game when I was about 12, and the gun to my head, I couldn’t tell you where it is now. It’s not something I’m proud of, but we all make mistakes. I hope these videos will make people look back on their time with their dogs with fondness, and maybe even come back again. Take it from a man who has played a lot Nintendogs lately the game has been holding up a bit!

As for when the next (and final) installment of this TikTok saga is uploaded, stay tuned. Ben tells me the video has finished recording and should be uploaded “soon”. And as much as he enjoys all the viral success and views, the whole ordeal was surreal and gave him much food for thought over the past few weeks.

“I’ve been making all kinds of videos for the past 10 years (mainly for other people) and now my most watched clip is where I pick drunk things off a train floor in the middle of the night,” Ben admitted.

“I think I’m going to sit in a dark room and think for a long time.”

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