Last night WoWhead released a whole bunch of datamined information that shines more light on the Pet battle system. For those who do not know this is Blizzard’s attempt to stave off burn out of the players, they created a turn based battle system designed to pin your (no longer) noncombat pet against another player’s noncombat pet. Before we go on just to make it perfectly clear it is the Pokemon that Nintendo refuses to make.
You battle with your collection of pocket-sized monsters and you go out and catch wild pets around the world, and you can level the pets to be stronger when you fight against other player’s pets all taking place in an MMO world. Lets look at the new information and see what to expect from these Pokect Sized Monster fights.
Every pet will be categorized into a different type: Beast, Critter, Dragon, Flying, Mechanical, and Water pet types. Just like Pokemon, these pet types will have certain strengths and weaknesses when fighting others pets. Water pets, like the Sea Pony, will deal more damage to Mechanical pets and Mechanical pets will deal more damage to humanoid pets. Each pet will also have their own fighting types, with beast focusing on melee attacks while dragons will be focused on doing single and AoE attack spells, from the information it looks like we might also have a double battle option in the near future.
In the Mist of Pandaria expansion the players will be able to find pets that you can find in the wild… and just like Pokemon you will be able to catch these wild Pets to add to your collection. There are some pets that will only be found under certain circumstances like where can they be located, or what time of day it is. What I like about this concept is that more pets can easily be added in next patches or expansion, and if you are a true Petbattle master you will be off reexploring old parts of the world again.
The attacks that were datamined offers nothing too shocking, there are your basic Chomp and Dragon’s Breath, but they also have status inflicting moves too. In both competitive and noncompetitive Pokemon matches the players constantly think about the moves that poison, burns or freezes the enemy Pokemon its as part of strategy of the game and I’m glad that the more indept stretegy will be added to the game,winners of the matches won’t be detrimental by who ever has the hardest hitting spells.
Although it is not said in the “leaked” information, I am worried about the end game of this Pet Battle system. When WoW players get their hands on this in the beta, you can bet that there will be some people who will find out the best pet combination and moveset for each member of your team. If implemented poorly I fear that we will see players only use a handful of cookie cutter team builds simply because the Prairie Dog has better stats than the Hare, which is against Blizzard’s plan of more character customization.
I am reminded of a question posted on the Warcraft Forums where a person is asking why can’t noncombat pets give out certain buffs to players . A Blue replied that it was a good idea, but they would never implement it because if players found out which is the best pet-buff to have in PVE or PVP then players would always have that pet out, never bringing out any other in fear of losing that one extra bit of edge. With the Pet battle system, there is a fine line that Blizzard is walking on. The mini-game needs to find a balance between the difficult, math busting hardcore turn based strategy and the pointless, unrewarding mind numbing time sink that is on the other side of the spectrum. (like archaeology!)
Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays