Last time around I gave you seven great pets to level if you were new to this whole World of Warcraft pet battling thing.
The response was overwhelming… but I’ve barely scratched the surface.
Now I’m back. And I’ve brought some more “little” friends with me; cute, cuddly little friends that could tear your face off just for looking at another Azerothian the wrong way:
1. Emperor Crab
Though bearing little resemblance to the real-life Emperor Crab, when it comes to battle time this royal blue crustacean is no less intimidating.
In a PvP metagame rife with Undead (hateurguts Unborn Val’kyr), the H/H breed of this regal Aquatic acts as a counter with few peers; with 1806 HP, the Aquatic racial, [Shell Shield] and [Healing Wave], Emperor Crab shrugs off [Haunt] and other malefic DOTs like a stalwart boss.
He’s no slouch in PvE either; the P/P breed’s 357 attack delivers painful [Snap] and [Surge]s and combined with the aforementioned defensive abilities he becomes a hard-hitting wall (that can heal himself and others to boot) against the majority of NPC trainers. All around, a solid addition to any pet battler’s stable.
Battle Tip: If you’re having trouble finding the Emperor Crab in the Dread Wastes take on another useful pet found on this list: the Rapana Whelk. The Emperor Crab often accompanies the Whelk in wild encounters.
Note: The Zandalari Anklerender also has the [Black Claw]/[Hunting Party] combination.
Battle Tip: An S/S breed Zandalari raptor makes chump meat even out of Legendary Beasts and Celestial Tournament bosses. Be careful, though — the little stone dromaeosaurid should be used as a specialized sweeper; he can be shut down and left vulnerable by pets with Evasion Effects or Damage Reducing Shields.
3. Rapana Whelk
When you have your choice of frost-slinging yetis, miniature Firelords and luminous dragons settling on… a sea snail seems kind of like blowing your first round gym class pick on the poor, ungainly kid that fumbles over his own shoelaces.
Don’t let the little gastropod’s humble presence fool you; when it comes to toppling end-game trainers, spirit tamers and tourney bosses — this guy is 1790 HP of tanky, molluscan might.
Read my Intermediate Pet Battler’s Leveling Circuit Guide for further demonstration on why Rapana Whelk tears it up. (He can be used to two-pet vanquish four of the Pandaren daily trainers, making him a solid big bro for carrying all your noob battle pets.)
Battle Tip: Having trouble beating Chi-Chi, Hatchling of Chi-Ji in the Celestial Tournament? Try a trio of Rapana Whelks; the snail brethren equipped with [Ooze Touch], [Acidic Touch] and [Dive] form the perfect bird poaching crew.
Came for the sexy black and grey War Machine-esque design/color scheme.
Stayed for the most damaging [Minefield] in the game (690 damage).
Battle Tip: Don’t let the mediocre 1400 HP follow you; after setting up an [Extra Plating] the Warbot makes for not only a deadly attacker, but a sturdy one as well. Use [Extra Plating] when you know you’re faster than the opposing pet and watch their attacks ping feebly off your stalwart armor.
5. Spirit Crab
“Yet another crab on the list, Adventures in Poor Taste? You insipid bastards are joking me, right?”
True, this ethereal crustacean isn’t the most novel or inscrutable of pets — but he’s easy to obtain (found in Ghostlands), sports a whopping 1887 HP with the H/H breed and puts in work every match (especially with the very useful Undead racial).
Need further proof of Spirit Crab’s bad-assery? Check his pet description: “The souls of slain crabs seek vengeance against the murlocs who ate them.” Never has brutal revenge from beyond the grave been more justified and lauded by Adventures in Poor Taste.
Chrominius is one of the premiere “nukers” in World of Warcraft pet battling. His [Howl] -> [Surge of Power] combination fucks s--t up, plain and simple; the dual-headed Dragonkin is invaluable for several Beasts of Fable, Pandaren trainer dailies and Celestial Tourney bouts.
Check your Auction House: you should be able to nab your very own Chrominius for under 500g.
If you’re a certified bad-ass like myself — you watched plenty of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero growing up; among my favorite government issued action soldiers was Spirit Iron-Knife. Spirit was a Native soldier that specialized in hunting, tracking, and flexin’ a red headband atop his braided head. To top it all off he had a pet Bald Eagle (the aptly named ‘Freedom’).
With World of Warcraft pet battling, I’m able to realize my dream of becoming just like Mr. Iron-Knife… with one aberrant twist: enter Blighthawk.
Sure, he’s emaciate, missing a bit of plumage and covered in soiled rags… but that only adds to this flying dead’s macabre appeal. [Infected Claw] and [Ghostly Bite] tear into PvP pervasive Humanoid types and Aquatic walls that are often switched in to quell the Undead will have to think twice after being checked by a three-hit super effective [Slicing Wind].
Blighthawk is also the crux of CloneDance teams, which are quickly becoming one of the strongest teams in the metagame. (I’ll go over commonly encountered PvP teams and how to build your own in the next installment.)
Battle Tip: Unless you have some way to negate stuns or would benefit from leaving Blighthawk in, lay down a [Ghostly Bite] when you know you are going to switch next turn so that you don’t have to sit and eat damage from the resulting stun effect.
“Could you stop hitting me over the head with your Nuts please? You’re gonna leave a mark!” — Every one who has ever faced the wrath of Nuts and also just discovered sexual innuendos.
Yeah, we get it Blizzard. We like genitalia-based jokes too. (Way more than grown men should profess to.)
The plucky Critter-type isn’t just some double entendre though; his [Nut Barrage] busts Undead the hell up and then stays in the mix as a DOT for 4 rounds thereafter, punishing any pet that decides to handle the switch. [Woodchipper] also makes him a solid set-up for Bleed-oriented teams.
Battle Tip: [Crouch] was recently buffed last patch to reduce all damage taken by 50% for three rounds, making the option to give Nuts a sturdier pair all the more enticing. (Joke of the year.)
“Quoth the raven: the last word you said. It gets old.”
Since we already covered Chrominius on this list, it’s only fair to include another of pet battling’s most effective nukers: the Gilnean Raven. (The only way to get a Gilnean Raven currently is to go through the initial Worgen leveling quests, but rest assured, the clever little bird is worth it.)
The combination of [Call Darkness] and [Nocturnal Strike] is downright deadly. [Call Darkness] doesn’t just ensure the hard-hitting [Nocturnal Strike] becomes a guaranteed hit, however; the weather changing maneuver also puts pets in a state of Blindness, lowering their hit chance and also lowering the effectiveness of healing spells by 50%. The move is Humanoid to boot, granting it super-effectiveness against Dragon-types, which are resistant to the Raven’s Flying abilities.
Having trouble with heal-centric stall teams? Bust ’em down and leave your opponents “stark raven mad” with the Gilnean Raven. (Nevermore will I use such contrived puns. Honest.)
Battle Tip: Use caution with [Nocturnal Strike] against Elemental foes; the blindness induced by [Call Darkness] is a weather effect negated by the Elemental passive, which brings [Nocturnal Strike]’s hit chance back down to 50% instead of 100%.