Friday, November 30, 2012

We Ask, They Answer (Sometimes)

Twitter has proven to be a fountain of knowledge! If you haven't already, follow @Mumper, lead content designer, and keep an eye on all the latest pet updates.

That being said, Mumper updated the status of the Pandaria Tamer XP issue, Safari Hat, daily quests not resetting, and missing rare versions of the Clouded Hedgehog, Silent Hedgehog and Jungle Grub. Hotfixes for these issues and probably more are coming soon, but will need a server restart for them to go into effect.

As I noted in my previous post, some players are already seeing the Safari Hat in their mailboxes. You can try relogging, zoning into a dungeon, or exiting WoW completely and then logging back in to trigger the achievement spam and recieve your very own hat. Sometimes this doesn't work on every toon, and I recommend trying alts with these methods.

With every bit of new content, there are bound to be bugs that pop up. Some will be more severe than others, but at least we can have a little direct communication and find out whether or not they're truly bugs or intended changes. Plus it's great to stay updated on how the hotfixes for actual bugs are going, and if/when they might be released.

Many get upset when they're left in the dark or don't understand what's going on. That's just human nature. With Twitter and the real-time updates/feedback, it's much easier to stay in the know, and in turn helps to reduce the anger that comes with feeling out of the loop.

I love that developers take some time out of their busy schedule to respond to a few player concerns. The communication is great and although there are liaisons between the community and developers, in the form of the forum blues, it's just not the same as a dev answering a question directly.

Anyway, we just need to hang in there a bit longer for all the hotfixes. Hopefully it will all get sorted out by the end of this week!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Looking Sharp!

I finally got my Safari Hat yesterday night! A guildmate suggested I try zoning into a dungeon, and although it didn't work on my main, it worked on one of my alts. :D

Mumper recently confirmed on Twitter that the hotfix for the Safari Hat will be released shortly. Hopefully it will solve everything, and all of our toons will receive this nifty headgear. And yes, he also confirmed that all of your toons should get the item in the mail.

New Summon Random Pet Macros

Here are the new macros for summoning your companions:
Summons a random companion from your Pet Journal.

Summons a random pet from your list of "favorites" in the Pet Journal.

/summonpet [name]
Summons a specific pet. You can insert the unique name you've given your pet or the pet's default name.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

My To-Dos

So much to do; I need a to-do list:
- capture new wild pets / replace non-rare new pets with rares

- farm for raid boss pets

- craft imperial silk for two tailoring pets

- spirit tamer dailies

- grand master dailies

- sort through wild pets and find those that were color-changers but now aren't + replace those that don't have desired skin
I'll probably end up adding more to the list, but it's just a place to start I guess. I wish I didn't have to sleep so I could get all of this and more done. :P

More 5.1 Notes

Patch 5.1 is proving to be pretty overwhelming for me! So much to do and so many new pets to collect. I might have to take a breather and just take it very slow. There are only so many hours in a day. :P

Anyway, some misc things that came with 5.1:
- New Spectral Cub (not to be confused with the TCG pet loot card, Spectral Tiger Cub) is in the Pet Journal. It says the source will be from the Blizzard PetStore. Interesting...!

- Specific times for in-game "sunrise" and "sunset" were announced for the NA region. This might help collectors determine when "night" and "day" start/end for the companions that have specific spawning times.

- The Safari Hat is bugged for some players. Players eligible have yet to receive their hat. Those that completed the achievement Taming the World after 5.1 came out probably won't run into this bug. Developers are aware of the hat not being sent out and are working on a fix.

- Many bugs in general! But that's to be expected with new content. One big one is certain pet abilities/attacks don't have the proper animations.

- Tamer daily experience might be bugged and/or nerfed, as reported by users on WarcraftPets.

- The new wild pets have been pretty elusive, most likely due to the new spawning timers. Instead of mass spawning after a server restart or maintenance, pets will sporadically spawn in smaller numbers, but hopefully more frequently. Downside is that it's less predictable now.
"The new pets are on fairly long spawn timers, and are randomized (i.e. will not spawn on server restart). We've confirmed they have been spawning on some realms, so just keep an eye out!" - Bashiok
- Tooltips when hovering over a pet that you have summoned also shows its quality in the name.

- /randompet works now! Hooray for a much simpler macro. :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Locations of Pandaren Spirit Tamers

Here's a list of where to find all the new tamers, because I had trouble finding the Spirit Tamers after completing the initial quest. Damn you quest tracker/marker! I've come to rely on you so much. :P

Thundering Pandaren Spirit (earth) - Vale of Eternal Blossoms (north of Mogu'shan Palace, in the hills)

Burning Pandaren Spirit (fire) - Townlong Steppes (west of Fire Camp Osul, on the overlook on the coast)

Flowing Pandaren Spirit (water) - Dread Wastes (far south east, the little peninsula jutting out into the water that separates Dread Wastes from Krasarang Wilds)

Whispering Pandaren Spirit (air) - Jade Forest (south of Honeydew Village, north and across the river from Grookin Hill, on top of a large rock pillar)
For the last location (Jade Forest), it's on top of the mountain formation on the map, a little north of the reddish trees (Tiger's Wood).

Monday, November 26, 2012

Bosses That Drop Pets

This is mainly for my own reference so I don't have to keep checking Wowhead.

Vanilla raids that drop pets:
Molten Core
- boss 2, 7, and 8
Blackwing Lair
- boss 1, 3, and 7
Temple of Ahn'Qiraj
- boss 1 and 5 and optional boss 2
Naxxramas (10 or 25 man)
- boss 3 in The Plague Quarter
- boss 3 in The Arachnid Quarter
- boss 3 in The Construct Quarter

Patch 5.1 Scheduled Release: Tomorrow!

Patch 5.1 is coming out tomorrow! I'm excited yet a bit upset at the same time. My best friend whom I've played with and shared nearly every WoW experience with is out of town, and won't be joining me in this new patch adventure. At least not for a while. :(

New Dailies
I'm definitely looking forward to the new Pandaren Spirit dailies. I never got a chance to try these out on the PTR since I pretty much had to start all over.

My plan for the new spirit pets is to choose the one that has the toughest Tamer to beat, since each specific element will have a chance to drop only their corresponding spirit. Example: The Burning Pandaren Spirit daily reward will have a chance to drop only the Pandaren Fire Spirit.

New Wild Pets
I'm most excited about all the new wild pets to capture! I'm going to park a toon at each location so when I wake up, I'll be all set to go.

Expect a lot of people looking for the new wild pets, so there will likely be a lot of competition. There was little to no competition for these pets on the PTR, so it was hard to gauge the respawn time. We'll see how good/bad it is once 5.1 goes live tomorrow.

New Darkmoon Faire Daily
Patch 5.1 is coming out just in time for next month's Darkmoon Faire! A new Tamer will be there and I can't wait to battle him for a chance at a new pet. :)

I REALLY hope that since the DMF is only in town for one week each month, the droprate for the Darkmoon Eye won't be ridiculously low like the Porcupette. We'll have to wait and see, I guess. :\

Vanilla Raid Boss Dropped Pets
I WOULD say I'm excited for the new raid boss pets (and overall I am), but I was looking forward to clearing nostalgic content with my best friend. I guess it will have to wait.

I never attempted to try my luck with the vanilla raid boss dropped pets on the PTR, but from what I understand, they will NOT be 100% droprate. There will also only be one pet from the boss, should the boss feel so inclined to drop one. Thankfully, most of the content will be solo-able.

The Battle-Stones will be another interesting feature to finally see firsthand. Since my toons on the PTR never had their current pet collection copied over, I had to start over from scratch. That being said, I never saw a single stone; I wasn't trying extraordinarily hard tbh.

Updated Pet Battle UI
One thing that I have to wonder about is how the updated UI will affect current addons. The Pet Battle UI will show wild pet quality before capture and during battle, but what about addons that do more than that?

I'm currently using an addon that not only shows quality, but also ability/attack cooldowns. This is VERY useful during battles, and helps me gauge when to use what ability next. It doesn't give me a 100% advantage, since abilities are often randomized, but I do have a better sense of what COULD be coming next.

Will addons like this be broken in 5.1? Hopefully the creators will update these mods quickly after the patch is released!

Brawler's Guild
Last but not least, the Brawler's Guild. I'm honestly not looking forward to this very much. If a pet wasn't involved (Clock'em), I probably wouldn't bother with it. The gated access is a real turn off for me.

I guess I have to bite the bullet with this one.

I think that's it for 5.1, but I'm probably missing something. XD There's just so much being released that it can get overwhelming!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Purpose of Polished Battle-Stones?

MMO-Champion reports that patch 5.1 will be out "soon". This could mean within a week or up to three? Or more? We'll see!

A new feature coming in 5.1 is the ability to upgrade a pet's quality using Battle-Stones. There will be two versions, Polished and Flawless.

One will transform any pet you own into an uncommon (green) quality companion, while the other will upgrade your pet into a rare (blue) quality companion. Epic (purple) stones were datamined, but they will not be released any time soon.

These stones will be very rare and random drops from the Tamer daily bag. There's also a chance that you can receive a Battle-Stone after defeating a wild pet, and he higher the level of the wild pet you defeat, the higher the chance of finding one in the wild. Alternatively, if battling is not your preference for finding upgrades, you can purchase Polished Battle-Stones for 1000 JP.

Some stones will be BoP while some will be BoE. Also, there will be general versions and family specific stones.

As far as I can tell, each stone will upgrade directly to whichever quality is designated by that particular stone. NOTE: Using a Battle-Stone on a pet level 15 or higher will cause the companion to lose 2 levels.

For example: Using a Flawless Battle-Stone on a poor quality rat will automatically turn it into a rare quality rat.

If this is the case, what (if any) is the point of Polished Battle-Stones? In terms of quality, rare is currently the best. Choosing to battle with anything other than a rare quality pet can often prove to be challenging and tedious. Even uncommon (green) pets have lower health, lower attack, and lower speed most of the time. This can put your team at a disadvantage.

So if we can upgrade directly to rare quality using a Flawless Battle-Stone, would anyone even WANT the Polished ones? If you can skip over a tier, wouldn't you do that instead of painstakingly try to upgrade one level at a time?

I suppose for those that absolutely can't wait to upgrade a poor or a common pet to rare, and those that don't mind battling with an uncommon companion, Polished Battle-Stones will be a blessing. Is that reason enough to keep them in-game? Even they will choose rare if given the option.

For those that demand the best and will not settle for just uncommon, receiving a Polished Battle-Stone will be a bit of a let down.

It's not as if you can AH, trade, or give away the the Polished stones. From what I can see on Wowhead's PTR database, all the uncommon stones are BoP. There's also no vendor price atm, which might mean you can't vendor them either. That's seems like it's going to be pretty frustrating.

Honestly, I don't see much of a point having Polished Battle-Stones in-game. Even those that are willing to use uncommon pets in a battle will opt for a Flawless Battle-Stone if given the opportunity. Polished stones just seem like an unnecessary filler.

Now, if your pet HAS TO BE uncommon prior to upgrading it to rare quality, then I could see the demand for Polished stones being much higher.

There are currently some pre-MoP pets that are poor or common, but are still fun and I'm sure there are those out there that would enjoy using them in Pet Battles. If these pets could only be upgraded to rare after they've been transformed into an uncommon pet, the Polished Battle-Stones would much more viable. You would need to find Polished stones before even thinking about using a Flawless one on that poor/common companion.

I have yet to find any Battle-Stones on the PTR, so I can't say how this will all work in the end. Perhaps some changes will be made to how the stones function, and both Polished and Flawless will be a necessary part of the upgrading process.

Until then, I'm baffled at the idea of having the option to upgrade to uncommon, when rare is still the best. I mean... doesn't everyone want (to be) the very best? :P

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Grand Master Pet Tamer: Courageous Yon

NOTE: This was written pre-Patch 5.2. Some elements of this write-up may no longer apply, and my team choice(s) have changed.

Next up in the line of Pandaria Tamers is Courageous Yon. When the ability Chew was way overpowered (before the nerf) I struggled so much in the battle against his team. This was the only Pandaria Tamer that I had problems with, until I figured out his team's quirks (and Chew was nerfed, of course XD).

Courageous Yon can be found in Kun-Lai Summit in an obscure cave in the snowcovered mountains in the lower left area of the zone. West of Kota Basecamp if you're looking at the map.
Pet Team: Piqua (flying), Lapin (critter), Bleat (beast)

Team quality and level: Epic (purple), level 25

Notable pets and attacks: Piqua's Lift-Off, Lapin's Burrow, Bleat's Chew
All of the pets on this team have hard-hitting abilities, two of which also include avoidance. There are a few ways you can handle this unique set up: out damage them, out last them, or avoid specific attacks. For me, I've found that avoidance abilities work best. It gives me extra time to work on defeating each pet, without having to resort to wasting a round on healing or hoping a large burst doesn't miss or is dodged.

The most common order in which Yon's pets come out are: Piqua, Lapin, and Bleat or Lapin, Piqua, and Bleat. I've only very rarely come across Bleat as the first combatant when challenging Yon to a Pet Battle.

I go with strong pets for my team on this fight. Undead (with a magic attack) to combat flying, humanoid (with beast attacks) to combat critter, and mehcanical to combat beast.

The key to this battle is timing. You'll want to time your abilities and cooldowns just right so you don't waste them. If you can figure out the quirks and patterns of Yon's team, defeating him will be no problem for you!


I use a Restless Shadeling for Yon's flying pet (but I used to use the Wild Crimson Hatchling). Usually Piqua will follow a specific order of attacks, and the one you need to watch out for is normally used during the second round but keep in mind it takes a total of 2 rounds to resolve.

Since Piqua uses Lift-Off as its second attack, I can use any ramp up ability first. This is usually a dot or some other damage increase. During the round where Piqua flies up into the air is when I have my shadeling pop its avoidance move, Phase Shift. If your goal is to prevent any damage from Piqua's Lift-Off attack, any avoidance ability will work, so long as you can time it right.

Phase Shift will last through the damage portion of Lift-Off, leaving my shadeling unharmed. From there, it's just a matter of defeating Piqua before it can get another Lift-Off out. In most cases, a second one doesn't occur, but if it does, Phase Shift will be off cooldown by then. An avoidance move with a short cooldown comes in very handy for this particular match up, just in case Piqua manages to dodge a lot of your basic attacks.


The next companion that is sent out to battle is Lapin, the rabbit. Again, the second attack that it uses is most likely the one you need to be aware of, Burrow. Much like Piqua, this move also takes 2 rounds to finally hit.

That being said, I save my Flayer Youngling's avoidance move, Reflect, for the round where Lapin comes out of the ground. This negates any burst and from there my pet can continue to work on defeating this bunny.

Lapin normally doesn't last to get another Burrow off, which is a good thing since Reflect is on a fairly long cooldown. Thankfully, my youngling has quite a bit of burst, and unless Lapin dodges a lot or my pet misses too often, I normally don't have to worry about blocking another round of large incoming damage.


This is the pet that gave me the most trouble when the ability Chew was overpowered. The damage this attack did was insane! It was eventually nerfed, but that doesn't mean you should ignore this move completely. Chew can still cause quite a bit of damage to your pet, especially if it's used before Stampede.

Stampede places a debuff on your pet which increases the damage it takes. Combine that with Chew, which already hits for a large amount, and your pet's health could take a nosedive fairly quickly.

Whenever I'm up against Bleat, I find that he will use Chew first, which means Stampede will be second. To try and reduce how much damage my pet will take, I use the Darkmoon Zeppelin's Decoy ability first. This won't block the initial Stampede, but it will prevent Chew from landing. Since Stampede hits multiple times and Decoy only blocks two attacks, my zeppelin can't avoid 100% of the damage during the second round of Stampede.

After Decoy has been deployed, I send out my "ramp up" (Bombing Run) and proceed to knock down Bleat's health as best as I can. Because Stampede is a three round ability and Bleat usually likes to heal himself after casting it, I normally have about 2-3 more rounds where I can just pump out damage on him.

If I don't miss and Yon's pet doesn't dodge, I'll usually defeat Bleat just as he's performing a second Chew (it never has a chance to hit, though). Bombing Run ends up being the killing blow most of the time.

I've tried to use my ramp up ability first, but it never ends very well. It's important to control how much damage Bleat does to your pet, not just how much you can do to it. If your pet can survive the first few rounds of burst, it will have a higher chance of consistently putting out damage later.

As always, the pets and tactics mentioned above aren't mandatory. This is just what I've found to be most effective for me. You can definitely beat Corageous Yon's team with an assortment of other pets and methods; find what works best for you!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Have a Good One!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and excellent Thursday. :)

My Plump Turkey (aka: Gobbles) realized that he's got so much to live for, and that he can make his own destiny. ;)

With this new found zest for life, we headed to Kun-Lai Summit to enjoy the crisp winter air and hangout next to a cozy campfire. Needless to say, Gobbles lived to see another day. :)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Critter Army, Away!

If you're looking for a bit of fun and love critters and companions, I highly recommend getting the Panflute of Pandaria. It drops off Moldo One-Eye in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms.

I wasn't actively looking to get this item, as I didn't think it would be all that great. I mean, considering the druid glyph, Glyph of Charm Woodland Creature, was bugged for the longest time (it might still be but I haven't checked), and Critter Bites is very limited in terms of flexibility, I didn't think much of yet another item/spell that would cause critters to follow you.

I was so wrong.

The item (not a trinket) has a very short cooldown (1 minute), and the critters that follow you will do so for 15 minutes. The panflute has quite a bit of range, and you can use the panflute on cooldown without despawning your current followers. I haven't found a limit on the number of followers you can have at any given time yet.

Yes, these are flying turtles and penguins! A guildmate who happened to be a mage suggested that I try getting flying critters to follow me, and as it turns out, those critters fly alongside you.

Then he had another brilliant idea: polymorph. Or more accurately, Crittermorph.

If you polymorph any critter prior to charming it with the panflute, they will retain the poly! This led to many moments of hilarity as I scouted all over for every flying critter I could find. The result is the screenshot above. XD

Since these are not true vanity pets, you can't use pet items on them like Magical Pet Biscuits. But I think that's appropriate; think of how obnoxious it would be to have 20+ gigantic sized flying critters following you lol!

For someone like me that was looking for a "pet leash" or something that would allow me to have many pets out at once, I think this a fairly good compromise. They may not be MY pets initially, but they're cute enough that I won't pass them up. :)

Edit: Apparently this is buggy for non-druids (flight-form works just fine as you can see above). Mounting up after using the panflute will cause the critter to freeze in place and it won't follow you. :( Sounds like the same bug that was happening with the druid glyph. Sadness!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Effective Counterpets

There are a couple discussions over on Warcraftpets' forum, and the topic is: counterpets. Pets on counters, what? :P

No, "counterpets" generally means a companion that is strong against a specific family while that family type's attacks are weak against it.

A basic example would be a dragonkin pet with magic attacks up against a flying companion. The opponents attacks towards the dragonkin would be weak, and at the same time the dragonkin's attacks towards the flying pet would be strong. Ultimately, the dragonkin companion would have the advantage in the battle.

So far the community has found at least one example of a counterpet for each pet type:
*Aquatic: Jade Owl (magic with flying attacks)*

Beast: ?? (none atm, but ideally flying with mechanical attacks)

Critter: Flayer Youngling (humanoid with beast attacks)

Dragonkin: Scourged Whelpling (undead with humanoid attacks)

*Elemental: Any snail (critter with an aquatic attack)*

Flying: Sprite Darter Hatchling (dragonkin with magic attacks)

*Humanoid: Any spider or maggot (beast with an undead attack)*

*Magic: Mechanical Pandaren Dragonling (mechanical with a dragonkin attack)*

Mechanical: Any elemental with elemental attacks will work

Undead: Any frog or toad (aquatic with critter attacks)
Obviously, these aren't hard and fast rules, but these seem to be the best counters for each family type so far.

Keep in mind that the ones marked with an asterix aren't absolutely ideal since they might not come in the highest quality (Jade Owl and Mechanical Pandaren Dragonling) or they may only have one strong attack. The quality issue can be addressed once Battle-Stones are released in 5.1.

Some other possible counterpets in the next major content patch:
Flying: Nexus Whelpling, Chrominius

Critter: Kun-Lai Runt, Stunted Yeti
The Corefire Imp was another candidate, but it only has one attack that would strong against critters. The two mentioned above have at least two strong attacks.

Grand Master Pet Tamer: Hyuna

NOTE: This was written pre-Patch 5.2. Some elements of this write-up may no longer apply, and my team choice(s) have changed.

I'll finally be covering the Pandaria Grand Masters! I'm not sure if you're supposed to do these battles in a specific order (per zone level?), so I'll be reviewing each one in the order that I complete them each day.

First up, Hyuna!

Hyuna can be found in The Jade Forest, next to the crossroads of the eastern road coming out of the Temple of the Jade Serpent.
Pet Team: Skyshaper (flying), Fangor (beast), Dor the Wall (aquatic)

Team quality and level: Epic (purple), level 25

Notable pets and attacks: Fangor's Burrow, and Dor the Wall's... everything lol.
I find this pet team is pretty straight forward, except for Dor the Wall. The first two pets can be defeated in any fashion, however dealing with Hyuna's turtle is all about endurance. I have yet to find a way to burst this "wall" down.

I go with mechanical to combat beast, ?? to combat flying (I'm still in the process of finding a magical pet or a pet with magical abilities that I feel comfortable using), and humanoid to combat aquatic. If you've been following my other write ups on other Grand Master Tamer battles, I bet you can guess which mechanical and humanoid pets I use. :P


Skyshaper has two dots and then a main attack. There won't be much burst damage to contend with when up against this companion. That being said, I think any pet that's strong against flying should be able to go head to head with Skyshaper. Of course, self healing abilities will help.

Since I haven't really found a pet that I'm comfortable using against flying, I've been trying out different ones. Normally I use the Wild Crimson Hatchling since it can not only heal itself, but also has an ability that allows it to avoid some damage. Plus flying attacks are weak against it. If I find a pet that I like that's strong against flying, I may update this later. (I'm trying out Shimmering Wyrmling and Sprite Darter Hatchling next!)


Unlike Skyshaper, this sly snake does have some burst. Specifically Burrow and Vicious Fang. Although the latter attack may not seem like it, if allowed to ramp up, it can do significant damage. The best thing to do here is defeat Fangor as quickly as possible while avoiding most of its larger hits.

I use the Darkmoon Zeppelin to deal with Fangor. You need to be aware of each round and the possible attacks though, because you don't want to waste any cooldown ability just as the snake burrows. When it does this, any damage will usually miss, and that means an ineffective attack that's now on a cooldown. That dip in damage on Fangor can make or break the battle.

Since Fangor will usually use Hiss first, my zeppelin can use its ramp up ability without fear of wasting the cooldown since it will most likely hit. I deploy Bombing Run during this round.

The next turn is normally when Burrow will happen, and a great time for my zeppelin to set up Decoy. There's a cooldown on it, but it's not a wasted ability since it can't miss. It also provides a way for my pet to avoid the incoming high damage from Burrow in the next round.

After that, it's just a matter of getting constant damage out on the snake before it can Burrow again. In some cases, Bombing Run won't even have time to resolve and hit since Fangor will hopefully be defeated before then. But I still use the bomb just for safe measure, and in case any of my other attacks miss or get dodged. You never know with RNG!

Dor the Wall

Last but not least is Dor the Wall, and let me tell you, his name isn't just for show!

The name of the game is endurance when up against Dor. He can heal, shield himself to reduce a significant amount of damage done to him, and he has a high burst ability that has the potential to stun.

Luckily, he's usually very predictable and will use each ability once it's off cooldown, so you just have to keep track of each turn. You can use an addon that will show you when an ability will be available for use.

As soon as Dor the Wall comes out, depending if my current pet on the battlefield has enough health to withstand the initial Headbutt, I switch to my Flayer Youngling. Any companion that has an avoidance ability will work here, though. The youngling's especially effective, though, since it can avoid the Headbutt and perform back at Dor.

After the first Headbutt, Dor has two options, heal himself or use his Shell Shield. Once he heals himself, though, he'll just spam Shell Shield. All his other abilities will be on cooldown, which means Shell Shield will have 100% up-time. This is pretty annoying since he'll constantly be taking reduced damage, and will be healing himself up periodically. Your only choice is to just chip away at his health, while enduring the Headbutt burst.

My youngling combats this pretty well. I always have Reflect up for every other Headbutt, and my pet has two attacks to choose from to whittle down Dor's health. After using Reflect, I normally go with Rampage since it's higher burst than the main attack. On top of all of that, the Flayer Youngling's family passive allows it to heal itself a little bit each successful attack. It's not much, but considering how long the fight against Dor can take, it's enough!

Once you learn how to deal with Headbutt, it's just outlasting the turtle from then on out. Bursting him down isn't really an option because of his effective defensive abilities... which he has to spam repeatedly since he doesn't have any other attacks!

As always, the pets and tactics mentioned above aren't mandatory. This is just what I've found to be most effective for me. You can definitely beat Hyuna's team with an assortment of other pets and methods; find what works best for you!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

SC2: HotS Release Date

It's like banelings, banelings, banelings, whooaaaa, like a deadly green landmine!

Couldn't resist!

Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm release date was announced today; March 12, 2013.

What's with SC2:HotS? If you order the CE version, you get the Baneling pet!! :D But that's not all, according to Warcrafpet's Twitter, if you pre-order the Digital Deluxe version NOW, you'll receive the companion instantly! As in... today. XD

I just ordered mine, and once the WoW servers come back up, we'll see if this is true or not. If so, I can't wait to start leveling the Baneling!

The Digital Deluxe CE costs $59.99, while the physical box CE copy will likely cost a bit more ($90ish..?) but I haven't read any announcements that pre-orders for the physical version are available yet.

I'm very excited and pleased with Blizzards new approach to CE versions of their games. It's a little less pricey, yet still comes with the bells and whistles that I personally want. The art books, making of DVDs, etc. are really interesting, but those are things that I browse through maybe once and then store away safe and sound. So it makes much more sense for me to purchase a digital version.

Anyway, to order the SC2:HotS Digital Deluxe, go into your account management and if you already have SC2 linked to your account, you should see a green arrow (upgrade) indicator on your SC2 game listing. Click that and it will take you to the SC2 page. The purple box in the lower right hand corner will have both normal digital upgrade as well as Digital Deluxe available.

Farewell Felwood

I finally captured a Minfernal. *insert heavy sigh of relief here* After many weeks of periodically checking Felwood with no luck, I decided to just sit and wait.

Actually, it was more than sitting and waiting. I tried the "force spawn" method, where you go around and kill (not battle, just straight up kill) any wild pet that's not the one you're looking for.

The idea behind it is that a zone can only spawn so many wild pets at a time. By killing the ones that aren't the one you're seeking, it allows others to spawn. There's no guarantee that the particular pet you're looking for will be the next one in line, but there's a chance.

So I took that chance and flew around, killing every non-Minfernal wild pet I found. Did this help? Honestly, I can't really say. I don't know if the Minfernals share the same spawn as the other pets in Felwood.

I stopped after a while and just hung about Shatter Scare Vale. A few other players popped up in the area as well.

While this might seem like a bad thing, in some situations, more players in a zone is beneficial.

Yes, there will be more competition, but if wild pet spawning works in the same way as quest mobs do, the more players in an area will cause more companions to spawn and at a faster rate.

It's just a matter of who can get to those newly spawned pets first heh.

Normally I would be ecstatic to finally add a hard-to-find pet to my collection, but I'm mostly glad that the ordeal is over.

Unlike hunting for rares or rare drops, sitting around and just waiting feels very unproductive and unsatisfying.

It's not the same as killing a mob over and over again, with the notion of 'just one more', yenno? At least when you're hunting for a dropped pet, you're actually doing something, even if it's just going through the motions of killing, looting, killing, etc. It's manual labor of love. The psychological factor behind it makes it feel much more rewarding that just hanging around and waiting.

I'd like to be able to say that I'm proud of this pet, but it's not really one that's up there on my list of memorable companions.

Patience may have been necessary, but anyone can sit on a spot and afk until something shows up. It's not like it took massive amounts of effort to sit around. Just required some free time. For me, it's an anticlimactic end to a tedious endeavor.

Needless to say, I won't be visiting Felwood intentionally again for quite a while.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Grand Master Pet Tamer: Obalis

NOTE: This was written pre-Patch 5.2. Some elements of this write-up may no longer apply, and my team choice(s) have changed.

Today I'll be covering one of the "easier" Grand Masters, Obalis. Even cat people can appreciate the awesomeness of pets! :)

Obalis is Kalimdor's Grand Master and can be found in Uldum, on top of the dam just south of the main city.
Pet Team: Pyth (beast), Spring (flying), Clatter (critter)

Team quality and level: Epic (purple), level 25

Notable pets and attacks: Spring's Moth Dust and Cocoon Strike, and Clatter's Apocalypse
I find Obalis' team to be pretty tame compared to some other master pet teams, and if you have companions that are strong against his, you should be able to make quick work of his pets. His encounter isn't much of a burst or longevity battle, but like with any battle, don't underestimate your opponent!

For this particular team I go with mechanical to combat beast, dragonkin to combat flying, and humanoid to combat critter. There are other families that would work well against Obalis' crew; this is just what worked best for me.


Out of all the pets, I think the snake is one of the "easiest". It doesn't have a large burst ability (like Burrow), so you don't have to worry about avoiding massive amounts of damage.

That isn't to say you can just eat all its attacks, though. If your pet has an ability that blocks or allows you to avoid any of Pyth's attacks, I would still use it.

I use my trusty Darkmoon Zeppelin to battle Pyth, and unless it gets a string of unlucky misses or my opponent dodges too many attacks, the zeppelin is very effective.

Unlike other snakes that have Burrow, I start out with the Decoy ability first. This will block a lot of the initial damage, so I can "ramp up" in relative safety. To maximize damage though, Bombing Run should be used first, as it has a 3 round timer before it resolves.

After that I do the usual, which is Bombing Run and then barrage after barrage of Missile. In most situations, Pyth will be dead before I have to set up another Decoy, leaving my companion with health to spare for the next pet.

If my zeppelin isn't too low, I usually can toss out another Bombing Run or Decoy at the next opponent in line before switching it out.


I don't know about everyone else, but Moths are one of the pets that annoy me to no end. Especially if they have the abilities Cocoon Strike and Moth Dust.

Since I haven't found a pet that I like that's strong against flying, I go with the Wild Crimson Hatchling on this fight. Flying is weak to Dragonkin, my hatchling can heal itself, and it has an ability that allows it to avoid (ground) damage for one round.

Spring will usually start off with Moth Dust. It hits pretty hard and has a chance to put your pet to sleep. Since it (normally) uses Moth Dust as its first attack, I just eat the damage. If I'm lucky, though, the Decoy set up by my zeppelin in the previous round might still be there and will take the damage for me. This is situational and depends on which opponent I'm up against first, though, so I don't count this scenario always being the case. If/when Moth Dust does it, I can always heal up after.

Moth Dust has a pretty short cooldown, so whenever I see that it's about to be up after the initial use (I use an addon that shows me), I use my Wild Crimson Hatchling's Lift-Off to avoid the sleepy-time attack.

The next ability that you should be aware of is Cocoon Strike. It's not necessarily a dangerous one, but if you don't pay attention, you could lose ground in this one turn. It will block the first incoming attack for one round, so be sure not to waste any hard-hitting ability (with a cooldown) while Spring is hiding in its cocoon.

If you're using a pet that has an attack that allows it to strike more than once (Triple Snap and Slicing Wind are two examples), use that ability after Spring performs its Cocoon Strike. The first hit will be blocked, but any additional hits will land (provided Spring doesn't dodge and you don't miss). In my Wild Crimson Hatchling's case, Tail Sweep will miss the first hit, but since my pet has less speed than Spring, the ability will hit a second time and that one will land.


Much like Pyth, I don't consider this beautiful beetle much of a threat. That is, however, only if it goes last. If it goes first, then there might be some danger. I have to say, though, that I have yet to see this pet be the first opponent during Obalis' encounter.

Clatter's abilities are basic, and nothing too hard-hitting. The only ability that you need to keep an eye on is Apocalypse. It's very situational, and will only really matter if this pet is first in line to battle your team. The longer the encounter draws out, the higher the chance Apocalypse will hit. If Clatter is last to be battled, though, the fight against it usually doesn't take 15+ rounds, so it's negligible.

I use the Flayer Youngling for this one. It has strong attacks while my opponent has weak attacks against it. It's the ideal situation.

Since Clatter isn't all that dangerous, there's no special order of attacks that I use. Normally I just go with the hardest hitting abilities first to burst down the beetle. If ever I feel my youngling's in danger, I always have Reflect to fall back on.

As always, the pets and tactics mentioned above aren't mandatory. This is just what I've found to be most effective for me. You can definitely beat Obalis' team with an assortment of other pets and methods; find what works best for you!

Missing Pets On the Amory

I was taking a look at my Warcraftpets collection and my stats on the armory, and noticed that the two totals of unique pets collected didn't match up. According to my armory, I only have 453 pets collected, while my Warcrafpets status is 462.

What gives?

After some snooping and sleuthing, I found out that my armory is still bugged. It's not listing the following pets:
- Darkmoon Balloon
- Darkmoon Cub
- Darkmoon Monkey
- Darkmoon Tonk
- Darkmoon Turtle
- Darkmoon Zeppelin
- Tree Frog
- Wood Frog
- Sea Pony
Do you see a theme here? It's nearly all of the Darkmoon Faire related companions! I guess this faire is so elusive even its pets can hide even after they've been collected? :P

Of course, my situation isn't replicated on most other armories I checked. This doesn't appear to be an armory-wide or consistent bug. Some players had all the pets listed except for the balloon, while other armories weren't missing any.

The only thing that I can think of that sets my armory apart from those that I compared it to, is that mine was bugged for the longest time and didn't show ANY pets/mounts. I can't say for certain, but I'm pretty sure that that's probably a factor.

While this might not be a HUGE deal, since we can keep track of our collections manually on Warcaftpets, this does affect the Wowprogress ranking system somewhat. Since it pulls information directly from the armory, any characters that are afflicted by the missing pets bug will have their "pet points" inaccurately calculated.

Keep this in mind when checking out your score in relation to other players. The ranking system still isn't perfect or accurate. Maybe in the future once all these little discrepancies are sorted out.

So if your Warcraftpets collection isn't matching up with your armory, double check the pets listed above and any other pets. They're probably missing from your armory. I don't know if this bug includes only these pets or others.

This bug doesn't affect everyone, but high risk armories include those that weren't showing any pets/mounts, despite having a collected some. Which pets are missing doesn't seem to be consistent, so you'll have to double check. Don't forget to do a search in both "collected" and "not collected" tabs on your armory.

Hopefully these pets will find their way back to the armory in the near future. :)

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Tell Me a Story, Mr. Skull

Just for funsies!

Even faction leaders enjoy companion pets. :P

Elder Charm Pets (Cont.)

My initial post on this topic was mainly out of emotion rather than rational thinking, but now that I've had a chance to mull over the situation, my stance remains the same. After giving it more thought and discussing it further with a friend, I still feel adding pets and mounts as a bonus reward for using an Elder Charm is not the right direction. Flasks, pots, and other raid specific consumables/necessities would be more appropriate and be less of a potential upset.

A specific pet per specific boss would be absolutely unfair, and I don't think this is how the system would work. If anything, all bosses within an instance would share the same "Elder Charm loot table", so by using an extra roll after any of the encounters, you'd have a shot at the pet.

The biggest concern with this model are the mounts. Mounts normally drop off of specific bosses. Would they suddenly become available from every boss in the raid instance (via only Elder Charm rolls)? That would give players 4 chances (3 charms per week plus the actual boss that drops the mount) per week. Wouldn't that be going against the "rarity" design?

If the mounts remain boss specific (but you get an extra shot on that boss by using an Elder Charm), doesn't that seem unfair to mount collectors? Pet collectors will have a statistically higher chance simply because there are more bosses to roll on, while mount collectors will only have the one boss and one extra roll.

This is such unnecessary drama that can be avoided by just leaving pets and mounts out of the equation. Leave things as they are, and find another goodie to add to the Elder Charm rolls.

Heck, if not raid consumables, I'd LOVE a 28 slot bag. Those are very expensive and hard to come by, even if they're craftable. That would be a great reward for all the effort and time spent gathering those charms.

Because the whole point of adding more to the Elder Charm loot table is to make it feel worthwhile right?

That brings me to a second issue with adding pets and mounts to the Elder Charm roll. Will they be old, pre-existing companions/mounts? Or a totally new one, made specifically for the extra roll loot table?

If it's the former situation, it doesn't exactly make the roll worth it for veteran players and collectors. Receiving something common like a Silver Tabby Cat after using your bonus roll is a bit of a let down for most IMO. Plus since many of the pre-MoP pets are readily available these days, many players will likely have them already and may not be able to profit or use it to their advantage.

Placing older mounts would probably be more well accepted since most mounts are harder to come by than some pets. But of course, then the pet collectors would get the shaft in this situation, unless the older pets that are added are the harder to obtain ones (such as the Hyacinth Macaw).

Now, if the pet/mount is a totally new one, just for the Elder Charm rolls, that would definitely feel like a reward. Everyone loves shiny new things.

But of course, the downside to this is that players would feel compelled to use their rolls just for a shot at the new pet/mount, even if they didn't need anything from that particular raid zone anymore. This goes back to my original concern where raiding collectors would then have to choose between saving rolls for progression or for their collection.

After a while and after content's no longer current, this won't be an issue. But as it stands, it being so early in the expansion, collectors will feel the pressure to choose to between saving their coins for current upgrades or using them on (relatively) older instances.

This is of course, if pets/mounts are specific to a raid zone. Example: An Elder Charm roll in Mogu'shan Vaults would yield only pet A, while an Elder Charm roll in Heart of Fear would yield only pet B.

If the rolls can yield the same pet/mount anywhere, there's no choice involved since you'll be using your charms anyway in hopes for a piece of gear.

This will be frustrating for pet collectors, though. Nevermind the RNG that will be involved, if they don't raid, how will they even have a chance? Not having access to a new pet that's only available through Elder Charm rolls (and only if you don't receive any piece of gear) will be devastating for some. It will be like the PVP vs. pet collecting scenario all over again, and many will feel obligated to just bite the bullet and do it despite their lack of desire to step into that world.

All in all, this is just the tip of the iceberg of all the potential headaches that will come with adding mounts and companion pets to the extra roll. Prevent the fire before it starts, and consider other possibilities; raid consumables, larger bags, and items that are hard to acquire but would be very useful, helpful and beneficial to everyone.

Pets are awesome, but they can't be the "fix" for everything. Honestly, it feels pretty cheap to just tack on a pet after the fact, as if pets and mounts are second-best items and used merely as compensation for poor rewards. (A pet should be a reward in itself, like the vanilla raid boss dropped pets in 5.1! :D)

Again, I know that nothing's been decided yet and adding pets/mounts to the rolls was just an idea/example of what they could do to make Elder Charms feel more engaging/fun. There aren't any concrete details on how this would even work, should they choose this as their ultimate design.

At the same time, I hope they seriously consider and choose other ways rather than just throwing vanity items around as a second thought.

All I can do now is just wait and see, and hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

What a Rare Collection You Have There

That's it! I caught the last rare pet that I needed to finish my collection. *sigh of relief*

Aside from the Minfernal (which I STILL haven't even seen yet), Scourged Whelpling, Wanderer's Festival Hatchling, and the three Pandaria pets that don't seem to come in rare, all my wild pets are now the highest quality possible.

Honestly, I'm thinking of just saving Battle-Stones to turn those particular pets into rares in patch 5.1. The Minfernal and Scourged Whelpling are such a pain to find in general, nevermind looking for a rare version. If this changes with the next patch, I might resume the hunt. But there's always the chance that it will be more of the same, just on randomly spaced timers, rather than mass spawns after server restarts.

I'm only slightly sure that I can get a Wanderer's Festival Hatchling in a better quality. My problem is my guild tends to do unofficial raids on Sunday night, so that eats into my pet hunting time. I might have to just skip one just so I don't miss the festival. The other issue is that I'm sure the hatchling is still in high demand and I won't be the only one trying to capture one. Needless to say being on a PVP server definitely has its downsides when it comes to pet hunting.

Next up: Level everything to 25! This task won't be as fun as it was to hunt for rares, but it's necessary if I want the Singing Cricket.

I'm slowly but surely achieving the personal goals set for my collection. Man, does it feel so rewarding!

Friday, November 9, 2012

No. Thank You.

"But with that said, we're exploring ways to make the bonus roll feel like more of a random bonus, without just making it extremely efficient for gaining character power. We understand how it feels to spend the charms and rarely see anything other than gold or items you don't need. So, for example, we could maybe add pets and mounts that would have a low chance of dropping exclusively on a bonus roll." - source
This was in response to a discussion about the Elder Charms and the new loot roll system.

All I can say is, PLEASE no. For the love of everything, NO. Is this a knee-jerk reaction? Possibly. Am I upset that this is even being considered? Totally. I may be the only one that feels this way, though. I'm sure others would feel elated if they had an extra shot at a mount off a boss.

I do understand that Zarhym was just presenting a possible example, however I don't agree with it nor do I want it to gain any steam. What I want and what actually occurs is rarely the same thing. But that's something we just have to live with.

Anyway, back on topic. I do not want to have to choose between gearing up by using an extra roll or saving it for a slight chance at a vanity pet off a boss. Implementing pets and mounts as possible drops EXCLUSIVELY through Elder Charm rolls is basically forcing pet collectors that raid to choose between PVE progression and collecting.

You only get so many charms per week; three I believe. Granted you may not need every single one of those each week, depending on which bosses you kill, but at the same time you could be saving them for specific bosses next week.

With so few charms available, and so many potential upgrades, HOW will we have any charms left over for vanity item rolls? This won't be possible until the content has become dated and no longer current.

But even then, the Elder Charms will still be necessary for progression, as new tiers will be released and more upgrades will be desired.

Until the very end of the expansion, when all the raid content has been exhausted and there's very little need for Elder Charms, pet collecting raiders will be forced to choose between vanity and progression.

I sympathize that the extra roll often doesn't seem very rewarding, but there are SO MANY OTHER things that could be added to the roll. Flasks, pots, raid food, etc. These things would directly help a raiding player and be appropriate rewards other than gold from an extra roll.

Please leave vanity items out of this; don't put raiding collectors in such an unfair position.

Or at the very least, this mechanic would need to be planned out so that collectors aren't forced to choose between rolling on a boss for gear they need, or a boss that they don't need gear from but want a pet from.

Edit: A guildmate suggested a scenario where a roll for a pet might be fair enough for both raiding players and collectors. Rather than specific bosses, a pet or mount would come from any extra roll within the raid zone. Across all bosses, all raids.

The only problem I see with this, though, is that mounts drop off of specific bosses. Would that mean the mount would be lootable from ANY boss that you decide to use the Elder Charm on? Wouldn't that undermine the "rarity" factor that Blizzard insists upon?

Or would the mounts remain boss specific, while pets are possible from any roll? How would this be fair for mount collectors, then?

It still seems like a bad idea to me.

Part two of this discussion here.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Don't Leave Home Without Your Hat

A guildmate brought to my attention a concern about one of the achievement rewards coming in the next patch.

The Safari Hat will be the reward for defeating 45 Master Pet Tamers (Taming the World) in 5.1. This item is BoA, which means it can only be mailed to toons on the same server (cross faction included) and not across realms.

For players that have toons spanning multiple servers, this is a problem since only one group of toons on one server would have access to the hat.

However, Mumper clarified on Twitter that all toons on an eligible account will receive the Safari Hat. All characters, regardless of server, will get the hat after completing the achievement.

So no worries if you enjoy leveling and Pet Battling on one of your toons on one server, while your characters on another server are reserved for doing other things. You'll have access to the pet experience boost on both servers.

I guess that means more Pet Battling for all, including alts! :D

Current Collecting Goals

I'm 3 pets away from collecting all rare quality wild pets! Of course this doesn't include the highly camped and hard to find Minfernal and Scourged Whelpling. Also excluded is the Clouded Hedgehog, Silent Hedgehog and Jungle Grub, which don't seem to come in rare at the moment.

After collecting all rares, I plan on continuing to level my pets. I'm only at a meager 31 level 25 companions. :(

Between raiding, dailies, capping VP each week, leveling alts and their professions, and of course RL priorities, I haven't been able to level my pets as much as I would like to.

The ultimate goal? To collect every wild pet, rare quality, and then level all my pets to 25. Yes, all 400+ pets to 25. Needless to say, that's going to take a while lol.

Once 5.1 comes out, I'll have to put grinding pet experience to the side again. There will be SO MANY new pets to collect; I won't be able to focus on purely leveling at all.

To break the routine, I might try out another color challenge. I discovered that nearly all my scorpion pets are color-changers, which means I might not have to collect each color.

But there's also that "fix" for color-changers coming in patch 5.1. Until I find out more about the "fix" to these skin-swappers, and if it will actually work, I guess I can only plan for the worst. The worst scenario being that I have to replace the color-changers with pets of the actual colors that I want.

Oh and random screenshot is random! XD

Can't believe my Feral Vermling ate my last carrot. :P

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cinder Kitten For Charity

Much like the fundraiser for the victims of the tsunami that struck Japan, Blizzard will be doing the same for the victims of Sandy.

This time around, 100% of the profits from Cinder Kitten (not yet released) will go to the Red Cross in an effort to help aid those that suffered loss from the storm.
Support the Red Cross’s Superstorm Sandy Response relief efforts and adopt a Cinder Kitten when this fiery feline arrives in the Blizzard Store later this year. Your support will enable the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, emotional support, and other assistance to survivors of disasters like Superstorm Sandy with 100% of the $10 USD adoption fee during this charity drive going toward this worthy cause.

Details about when and how you can purchase the pet will be announced in the coming weeks, so stay tuned! To learn more about the Pet Store, please visit the Pet Store FAQ.

The American Red Cross name and emblem are used with its permission, which in no way constitutes an endorsement, express or implied, of any product, service, company, opinion, or political position. For more information about the American Red Cross, visit
- source
Like with previous fundraising items, it's likely that there will be a deadline to have your purchase count towards the donation to the Red Cross. After a specified date, the proceeds will then go back to Blizzard. We'll have to wait to hear more details.

Again, this pet has NOT been released yet. This is just an announcement providing a preview on how the donations will work. More information on when the Cinder Kitten will be available will be coming in the near future.

I can't wait to adopt this bundle of fiery fluff AND help out with the relief efforts. :)

Non-Wild Pet Quality

In 5.1 the Pet Journal will show the quality of ALL pets, including the non-wild, pre-MoP ones. I checked out the PTR and decided to chart all of the non-wild pets and their listed quality.

You can currently do this on live servers too if you use an addon that shows quality, but it may take some time since you have to actually enter a battle to view each pet's quality.

Click here to view larger version

Some things to keep in mind:
- Blue indicates rare, green indicates uncommon.

- I don't own all the pets on the PTR, and my collection is obviously not recent or up-to-date.

- The qualities of these non-wild pets could change at any time. This is the PTR afterall.

- I'd like to compare the current non-wild pet qualities with the PTR versions to see if any were upgraded/downgraded for 5.1
If anyone has information on any missing pets that aren't listed, feel free to leave a comment to let me know the quality of that companion. Keep in mind I'm mainly interested in the pets that existed before MoP was released. ;)

Small Pet Q&A posted a recent developer Q&A (November 5th). Only three questions pertaining to Pet Battles were asked.
Q: Currently Pet Battle are only between the same faction. Is it possible we'll allow cross-faction pet duels? Will we have a Spectator Mode for pet battles?
A: There are currently no plans to make Pet Battles cross-faction. There isn’t really a need to build in that functionality either, provided enough players are participating that the queue times aren’t long.

Q: Do we consider adding further music tracks to the pet battles? The current music playing during the battles gets a bit old after a while.
A: There is an option to turn off pet battle music specifically if you get sick of it. We don't have any plans at the moment to expand upon the existing pet battle music. We did shuffle 10 tracks into different playlists and added some logic to the way they play back though. Specifically, PvP battles have the more driving pieces, and the trainer/boss battles have longer tracks that are less likely to repeat during a fight. PvE (wild) has overlap with both of these, but is weighted more with the less intense music. It's minor, be we feel this improves the experience by tying each music piece more consistently to different types of battles.

Q: There are rumours about several UI improvements and other features being added in patch 5.1 for pet battles. Anything you can share on this?
A: Just as an example of something awesome we plan to do with the pets that drop from old raid bosses you can share, if you collect all of them you get an achievement that unlocks Mr. Bigglesworth from Naxxramas. To distinguish him from the standard Siamese cat model, we gave him some sweet frozen whiskers and a frost path behind his footsteps. He's Undead.
These aren't especially revealing questions and answers, but I must say that I am definitely intrigued by the details of Mr. Bigglesworth. Frozen whiskers and frosty footsteps? Can't wait to see it for myself! I hope all the vanilla boss dropped pets get their own unique animations and/or interactions.

The link above has the full Q&A transcript if you'd like to read more than just the pet details. ;)

Clock'em From Brawler's Guild

After checking the PTR again, it looks like Clock'em will require you to be Rank 4 within the Brawler's Guild.

As a side note, someone on the PTR Forums detailed how we will gain access to this new faction. Here's a basic summary of the process:
- A number of invitations will be on the BMAH (possibly everyday) for a starting bid of about 1k gold. If you win, it becomes soulbound.

- You'll enter the guild and gain ranks as you progress through each PVE match. They will get progressively harder as you rank up.

- Upon reaching Rank 7, you'll receive a mail with ONE invitation that you can give out.
So rather than being able to hand out invitations left and right, you'll only be able to invite one person. And that's only after you've earned a specific rank within the Brawler's Guild. On top of that, according to the forum post, ranking up will not be an easy task.

I haven't tested this process out yet, or participated in the Brawler's Guild, but it seems to just get more and more frustrating. The way its described makes it sound as if it will take a very long time for invites to get around to the majority.

On top of that, players with only one extra invite will charge insane amounts, especially since they had to grind ranks for it (ie: spend personal time, energy, and effort). I can't blame them, but it's still unsavory.

I really don't want to jump to conclusions yet, but at this rate, Clock'em will probably be out of reach for a while and for many.

Side, side note: The poster on the PTR forums only mentions how to handle the encounter(s) as DPS. What if your main is a healer? Shit out of luck? If so, as a resto druid for my entire WoW career, that's VERY disappointing news, and I will probably not be able to purchase Clock'em... ever?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Brawler's Guild Update

It was originally announced that the Brawler's Guild would have very limited access. Earning admission would require an invite from someone already in the Brawler's Guild or by purchasing an invite from the Black Market Auction House.

Note: The price of the invite on the BMAH has dropped significantly since the original announcement. MMO-Champion reports that starting bids are roughly a few thousand gold each.

Ghostcrawler has given an update on Twitter about why this new faction is gated:
"The experience won't be good if 1000 players hit the brawls when the patch drops. We need to ramp up slowly, but we'll ramp up.

I expect everyone who wants to brawl will be able to. Just not the day the patch goes live. Slow down, as the Pandaren say. :)"
I still don't particularly enjoy the idea that something like this will be very exclusive for a while, before being opened up to the general public, but I understand the reasoning behind this.

Encounters and earning ranks requires defeating numerous PVE battles. If everyone headed into the arena to take on their own challenge at the same time, I'm pretty sure no one would win since there would be so much lag.

It's still not the ideal set up imo. There are other ways to limit access to the Brawler's Guild other than requiring players to pay gold. It feels somewhat cheap. Not to mention some people will likely take advantage of the situation and charge a ridiculous amount of gold for an invite to the Brawler's Guild. It's not ethical, but it's not against the rules.

Other possible ways to limite access: An item could be used instead; dropped, quested, created, etc. A tiered quest chain could also be an effective way to gate the content, for at least a little bit.

In the end, paying gold to either the BMAH or another player for an invite is probably the "easiest" way. Still, I think a lot of people will be displeased with this, AND gating in general.

The only silver lining to all of this is that the limited access won't be static. I'm going to hold the developers to their word, and expect to see a "ramp up" eventually so more players can gain access to the Brawler's Guild and finally the Clock'em pet.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Grand Master Pet Tamer: Bloodknight Antari

NOTE: This was written pre-Patch 5.2. Some elements of this write-up may no longer apply, and my team choice(s) have changed.

For this Grand Master post, I'll be covering Bloodknight Antari. And yes, he's almost always crowded by his own pets as shown in the screenshot below. He must really love his companions! :P

Bloodknight Antari is Outland's Grand Master and is located in Shadowmoon Valley.
Pet team: Jadefire (elemental), Arcanus (magical), Netherbite (dragonkin)

Team quality and level: Rare (blue), level 24

Notable pets and attacks: Arcanus' Feedback combined with Drain Power and Amplify Magic, and Netherbite's Phase Shift and Soul Ward
Unlike Major Payne's team, where it was more efficient to burst down his pets as quickly as possible, for this team, I recommend a balance of damage and endurance. Antari's pets hit quite hard but they also have staying power and damage avoiding abilities.

Aquatic to combat elemental, dragonkin to combat magical, and humanoid to combat dragonkin. Again, this isn't mandatory, but I've found that using strong pets against this team is effective.

Out of the three pets, I think the Fel Flame is the weakest in terms of damage and resilience. For this pet, I usually go with my Mirror Strider (pets with the same abilities are Aqua Strider and Dancing Water Skimmer). It can do large burst using Pump and heal itself if necessary. Under most circumstances, though, the battle against Jadefire doesn't last more than 3 rounds, and my pet usually only needs to heal once.

This pet is trickier and has abilities, when combined together, pack a powerful punch. I put my trusty Wild Crimson Hatchling up to the task of defeating the wyrmling (similar pets include Crimson Whelpling, Spawn of Onyxia, and Onyxian Whelpling).

What you need to watch out for is Amplify Magic and Drain Power. When both are used one after another, Acranus' damage is increased 75% AND your pet will take 25% extra damage. When it has both these buffs and your pet has that debuff, Feedback can be a killer.

Because Arcanus has the potential to hit very hard in just a few rounds, I chose a pet that could heal itself for quite a bit on a relatively short cooldown. Plus being dragonkin, its attacks are strong against this magical pet, so it's possible to burst it down while enduring blast after blast. It's essential to continue damaging Arcanus while surviving, because it's difficult to last longer than a few rounds with that kind of incoming damage.

If you have a pet that has dragonkin abilities, but isn't of that pet family, that's fine. As long as your pet does decent damage and has a way to heal or avoid the large burst, it will do ok.

The last pet on Antari's team is a dragonkin with two damage avoiding abilities, Phase Shift and Soul Ward. For this pet, I pick my favorite Flayer Youngling, who also has a damage avoiding move.

Netherbite is one of those pets that has the potential to outlast your own. It's damage isn't too bad, but don't let that fool you. If you let the fight go on for too long, it's possible that it will get the better of your team.

The two abilities to be aware of here are its damage avoiding ones. Phase Shift will last 1 turn, while Soul Ward will last indefinitely so long as Netherbite doesn't receive an attack. This is important to note because you'll want to save your hardest hitting attack for when these two abilities are on cooldown, so as to not waste it.

What I normally do is use my youngling's Reflection on cooldown, and its main attack (that doesn't have a cooldown on it) for Phase Shift and Soul Ward. Using this ability will help get rid of Soul Ward and "pass" a turn so that Phase Shift can wear off (without having to actually pass a turn).

Why not save Reflection for when Netherbite does an actual attack? I figure that this pet can outlast mine so long as it keeps avoiding my pet's attacks. If my pet can replicate that by stealing a damage reduction ability, it will give my Flayer Youngling more of a chance and put it on equal footing. Whether my pet copies Phase Shift or Soul Ward, it doesn't matter. Either way, that's one round where it doesn't take damage, and one more chance to get the upper hand on Netherbite.

The pets and tactics mentioned above aren't mandatory. This is just what I've found to be most effective for me. You can definitely beat Bloodknight Antari's team with an assortment of other pets and methods; find what works best for you!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Snail Color Challenge Complete

I got caught up trying to collect every color of a specific pet model again. In rare quality lol. This time it was the snails.

There are currently four possible colors for snails: green with red antennae, grey-purple with orange antennae, orange with yellow antennae, and finally brown with blue antennae.

Since the Rusty Snail only comes in orange and the Silkbead Snail only comes in grey-purple, those two colors were already kind of decided for me. That left the green and brown version. Luckily, Scooter the Snail is green so only one color was left to find.

The only snail that has a possible brown skin with blue antennae is the Rapana Whelk in Dread Wastes. It's not the only color it can come in, though, so I had to fight my way through many non-brown, non-rare whelks.

I eventually found one as a secondary, and it turned out to be a color-changer. I'm not complaining, though. :)

It will take a few summons to actually get the brown color that I want, but I'm ok with that since I'd rather keep color-changers and just spend a few extra moments summoning and dismissing it, than getting rid of color-changers altogether.

Besides, I can always head back and try to find a rare non-color changer if I ever get bored or feel absolutely compelled to do so. :P

If Blizzard actually fixes color-changers so they don't switch skins upon summon in the next patch, I might have no choice but to head back and pick up a new Rapana Whelk. Unless of course, if my current pet stays the correct brown color even with the fix.

Anyway, now the color challenge for snails is complete! Next up... scorpions..? XD

Sidenote: For anyone that would also like to try collecting every color of a certain model, all in rare quality, is a HUGE help. It shows similar pets with the same model as well as all the possible colors for each pet. :)

Darkmoon Faire On the 5.1 PTR

The Darkmoon Faire is back in town, so don't forget to save up 90 tickets for the new Darkmoon Hatchling coming in patch 5.1!

Since the faire is up, I decided to check it out on the PTR. The new wild pet, Darkmoon Glowfly, are available for capture. They seem to be all over the island, ready and waiting for collecting. :)

Their level ranges from 3 to 7. With so many possible levels to catch, I think the Darkmoon Island has the largest pet level range out of all the zones!

Strangely enough, the other Darkmoon Faire wild pet, the Crow, doesn't seem to be on the island or in the Pet Journal. Perhaps it was removed.

Anyway, the new Darkmoon Master Pet Tamer is also new to the area. His name is Jeremy Feasel and he can be found inside the faire, across the way from the tonk daily quest.

Unlike other Tamers, Jeremy's quest is a daily and costs one Darkmoon Game Token each time you challenge him. Even though there's a price for battling him, at least you can do it once per day for the duration of the faire.

Here are the details of his pets:
Honky-Tonk (mechanical) - 1745 hp, 294 attack, 280 speed

Fezwick (beast) - 1570 hp, 311 attack, 294 speed

Judgement (magical) - 1587 hp, 329 attack, 276 speed
All of his pets are level 25 and are epic quality. Looks like even though the island itself has lower level wild pets, you'll need to have a level capped team to fight the zone's Tamer.

Completing Jeremy's daily quest will reward the Darkmoon Pet Supplies, which will have a chance to drop the new pet, Darkmoon Eye.

Sadly, I still don't have my main toon's team and collection of pets, so I can't battle him atm. I'm still working my way back up to max level cap on the PTR, but it's quite a chore. Especially since there are other things I could be doing on live servers.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Poking Pesky Pets

I recently ran into a troublesome pet in Grizzly Hills. The Imperial Eagle Chicks tend to roost high up in the trees, where they're out of reach. This was a common problem on the MoP beta, but many of them were trained to stay lower to the ground.

Unfortunately, some of them have reverted to their old ways and are up in the tree tops again. They're way out of reach for most players to battle. MOST players. ;)

If you're a night elf druid, I found a way to access these birds or any other out of reach wild pet.
1. Get into range of your target.

2. Cast Faerie Fire onto it, which will put you and the pet into combat.

3. As soon as it's on top of you, shadowmeld and then quickly engage in a Pet Battle with it.
Simple, yea? The trick is to not kill the pet, but to piss it off enough so that it will come towards you. Shadowmelding will take you out of combat, and if you're quick enough you can grab it for a battle right after. You may need to wait a moment for your cursor to turn back into a green paw print. Be careful not to right click on the pet if your cursor icon is still a sword!

I haven't tried other class abilities that cause agro but don't do damage, but if there are other methods, any night elf could potentially use this trick to lure those pesky pets towards you.

A hunter or rogue of any class might also be able to do it since both have agro dumping abilities. The key is to find an attack that won't kill the pet.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Brawler's Guild Gated Access?

Another PTR patch has been applied. While there aren't any direct changes to pets or Pet Battles, there is something that's worth noting and discussing.

One of the updates was made to how you can join the Brawler's Guild. As I mentioned before, the Brawler's Guild is necessary to access the pet Clock'em. Last I checked a rank or reputation requirement wasn't listed on the item, but it wasn't purchasable for me.

The latest PTR patch notes state:
"Entry into the brawler’s guild is by invitation only. Invitations can be found on the black market auction house or by invitation from somebody within the guild." - source
This is significant since it essentially means access into this special faction's clique will be somewhat "gated", and will depend on other players to eventually open it up for more and more people.

It also means that Clock'em won't be accessible for a long time, and will probably take extra time to acquire (if taking into account that rep/rank grinding will probably also be necessary). The pet being BoP also doesn't help.

I haven't been able to check out the BMAH on the PTR yet, so I can't say how much the invitation will cost, but I'm going to guess it won't be cheap.

So far I'm not very impressed or excited about all of this. Until I find out more about how this process works, I don't see how gating this will be "fun".

For many pet collectors, preventing initial access isn't fun. Yes, we're willing to dedicate time and persist through difficult odds, BUT only if we get the chance to do so. If there isn't even a chance, it's not very compelling gameplay, is it?

We'll see how all of this plays out, and I sincerely hope that just getting INTO the Brawler's Guild won't be nearly as difficult as the patch notes are making it out to be. Nevermind the reputation/rank grind that will probably be required. I think most collectors are more than capable of handling that task.

Because when we're given the opportunity, many pet collectors are more than willing to put forth the necessary effort to collect a certain pet. It's that dedication and awesome determination that makes collectors stand out.

But we have to be given the chance to shine first.

Grand Master Pet Tamer: Major Payne

NOTE: This was written pre-Patch 5.2. Some elements of this write-up may no longer apply, and my team choice(s) have changed.

This is the first in a series of posts where I cover each Grand Master, which pets to watch out for, and how I handle their team.

First up is Major Payne in Icecrown. He was the first Grand Master that I struggled with in the very beginning.
Pet team: Beakmaster X-225 (mechanical), Grizzle (beast), and Bloom (elemental)

Team quality and level: Rare (blue), level 25

Notable pets and attacks: Beakmaster's Wind-Up and Bloom's Entangling Roots
The trick here is to find pets that are strong against each of Major Payne's companions. Instead of trying to outlast his team, defeating it quickly is a more efficient plan of action.

Elemental to combat mechanical, mechanical to combat beast, and aquatic to combat elemental. This isn't mandatory, but for the hard-hitters, it does help defeat them faster.


For Beakmaster, my pet of choice is the Fel Flame, but any similar elemental pet with dots will work (Searing Scorchling and Spirit of Summer share the same abilities). The key here is to defeat his mechanical pet as quickly as possible. It's attacks are so strong that it's generally unlikely that you'll be able to outlast it, so might as well beat it asap!

I prefer dots for this pet because mechanical companions have a family passive that allows it to come back to life (once) after it dies. With dots continuing to tick on Beakmaster even after revival, it means less time spent getting its health down further.


Instead of using an aquatic pet for Bloom, I normally use the Flayer Youngling. As soon as Bloom steps onto the field, I switch to my youngling and prepare for the Entangling Roots attack by using Reflect. It not only blocks the incoming damage, prevents my youngling from being snared, but it also duplicates any other incoming attack and reflects it back onto Bloom (it's usually the Lash ability).

Reflect won't always be up to prevent the damage and snare from Entangling Roots, but my goal isn't to outlast Bloom. By the second root (which does hit), Major Payne's flowery friend should be nearly dead.


I don't really consider Grizzle as one of the pets you should watch out for since it spends most of its time sleeping (ie: regenerating health). Its stun is somewhat annoying, but manageable.

Since this beast has the potential to outlast most pets because it can heal itself for quite a bit, I go with a mechanical pet that's strong against it. My favorite is definitely the Darkmoon Zeppelin.

I normally try to get out the Decoy ability first, so it can absorb some of the incoming damage while I "ramp up". By that I mean using Bombing Run which takes 3 rounds to hit.

During this time, though, Grizzle will usually go into his sleeping phase. This is a great opportunity to bombard it with any main attack, even if he's regenerating health at a very fast pace.

Normally by the end of his hibernation ability, Bombing Run will be up and do a significant amount of burst. The rest of the rounds are spent setting up another Decoy and finishing him off using the zeppelin's main attack.

If by chance, Grizzle gets the upper hand and my zeppelin has a string of terrible luck, at the very least it can come back to life should it die. That's the awesomeness of mechanical pets!

General Tips
If you decide to use pets that are strong against Major Payne's team, you can increase your chance of winning by pairing up your strong companion against the corresponding weaker one.

To do this you'll have to utilize the forfeit ability. Enter battle and see which pet he sends out first. If your pet is not strong against that one, forfeit the match and try again. Keep doing this until you're up against a weak opponent. I find that swapping the pets on my team around in the journal sometimes affects which pet the Grand Master sends out first. Other times it seems random.

As I mentioned earlier, the pets and tactics mentioned above aren't mandatory. This is just what I've found to be most effective for me. You can definitely beat Major Payne's team with an assortment of other pets and methods; find what works best for you!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Newest Finds

I've had two recent successful captures that I'm very pleased with. The first being a rare quality Mountain Cottontail. It may look like an ordinary bunny, but there's on thing that sets it apart: SHINY!

As far as I know, it's the only pet that can come in a super glossy skin. Not all of them have this color, though. They can come in normal white, brown, and brown/white. Finding a shiny Mountain Cottontail isn't too difficult, but I wasn't satisfied with just finding any old quality, though. I had to have it in rare PLUS shiny!

It took some patience and determination, but I managed to find one. :D

The second awesome find that occurred recently was a rare Snowy Owl. This beautiful bird only just started to spawn today. I absolutely love the colors for this pet.

At first it seemed like any other quality other than poor and common didn't exist. A guildmate and I scoured all over Winterspring and spent over an hour or two searching with no luck.

When it appeared as though the entire zone was cleared out, we decided to try a new tactic. Utilizing alts we crossed over into another server. Yea, I know. Not exactly a very ideal or ethical choice, especially since you're essentially "stealing" another server's spawns, but it was so late at night that it was unlikely that there would be many people on.

We managed to find one rare one and then a second within a few moments of being on another server. Lucky! Super satisfied with our find. :)

With these two newest additions to my collection, I feel as though my energy and determination to collect and upgrade all my pets has been renewed. After a while, hunting for rares and leveling started to feel so routine and monotonous, but now I'm all pumped to keep going until I near my ultimate goal of collecting all rares and all the things! :)

Sharing Pets

Pet collecting is generally a personal affair. You collect pets for your own pleasure and amusement. Unlike other gameplay, grouping to hunt for pets doesn't really work out since you can't really share the same exact companion.

But where there's a will, there's a way!

You might not be able to "raid" pet collecting, but you can definitely help out fellow collectors, friends, and guildmates. No, you can't capture wild pets for others since those companions aren't cageable. However, there is something you can do with one or two other players who have the same goal in mind as you: collect all the things!

If you're in the same area as friend, and you happen upon a rare quality pet that you already own, you can alert the other player to head over to your position. Once they're there, press "alt F4" and that will forcibly quit the game.

When you do this, it will kick you out of the battle without despawning the pet. Then your friend can take over and battle/capture the rare that you stumbled on!

Everyone wins in this situation. You suffer no losses since you already own the rare quality pet, and your friend gets one too. Hopefully they will reciprocate the favor someday. :)

Using the "alt F4" method to remove yourself from a battle without despawning the companion doesn't have to be just for guildmates and friends, though. If you feel so inclined, you could also use it for all pet collectors. Should you come across a rare that you already own, rather than killing it in battle, you could let another collector have a shot at it.

It would definitely be a considerate and generous but not mandatory thing to do, since it does take time and effort out of your gameplay, but think about how happy another collector will be when they find that rare pet you've left behind. :)

So whether you reserve this for just friends, or want to use it to help out everyone, or not at all, spread the pet love! :D
Creative Commons License
Perks N Peeves by Quintessence is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.