A print showing cats and mice from a 1501 German edition of Aesop's fables.
Rodents, particularly rats and mice, feature in literature, myth and legend. The North American Salish people have an epic tale in which the Beaver, rejected by Frog Woman, sings a rain-power song that results in a disastrous flood. In the Pied Piper of Hamelin, retold in many versions since the fourteenth century, a ratcatcher successfully rids the town of its plague of rats, but is not paid and lures away the children in revenge. In fact rats are loathed in many cultures. The 1971 horror film Willard has a horde of rats ultimately killing the hero who has befriended them, and in James Herbert's first novel, The Rats, (1974), a vagrant is attacked and eaten alive by a pack of giant rats; further horrors follow.
A hyperactive squirrel, Hammy is the least intelligent, though also the most lovable character in the strip, spouting random comments at random moments. His comments usually state an unusually short lecture on a topic of little interest to the other characters.
The character started the strip as "Hammy," but the character was replaced by "Sammy." 
The co-leader of the Freedom Fighters alongside Sonic. She was created as a character for the Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon, and then used in the comic as well. As Princess to the King he once overthrew, and now leader of a rebellion, Robotnik views her as a threat. She wishes to overthrow Robotnik and free her father from the void. A romantic relationship is often shown with Sonic, though often feelings towards other characters, such as Geoffrey St. John, and Monkey Kahn, have arisen as well.
Speedy Gonzales (commonly shortened to just Speedy) is an an anthropomorphic mouse in the Warner BrothersLooney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series of cartoons. He is portrayed as "The Fastest Mouse in all Mexico" with his major traits being the ability to run extremely fast and speaking with an exaggerated Mexican accent. He usually wears an oversized yellow sombrero, white shirt and trousers (Which is a common traditional outfit worn by men and boys of rural Mexican villages), and a red kerchief, similar to that of a reveler in the San Fermin festival.
Protagonist and main character in the Conker series. In the newer games, Conker is a greedy, heavy drinking, red squirrel. Conker, though highly materialistic, always approaches new characters with a positive outlook. In Conker's Pocket Tales, he rescues his girlfriend, Berri, from the Evil Acorn; the same version of Conker appears in Diddy Kong Racing, where he is a playable character and that game marks his first appearance. In The King of Fighters XIV for the Xbox 360, Conker decides to enter the tournament to stop the Violator.
The game's main character itself is a mouse. Mappy runs on Namco Super Pac-Man hardware, modified to support horizontal scrolling. The name "Mappy" is likely derived from mappo, a Japanese slang term (slightly insulting) for a policeman.