Updated for 5.1
Pet Battle Updates
Patch 5.1 adds several new battle pets to the game, and people have been hunting them down on the PTR to provide locations for you!
Several of the pets drop from old world bosses in Molten Core, Blackwing Lair, Ahn'Qiraj, and Naxxramas. The others come from Achievements, the Blizzard Store, Tailoring, Quests, the Darkmoon Faire, or the Brawler's Guild.
New battle stones have been added to allow you to upgrade pets. It will cost you 1000 Justice points or a rare drop after a battle with a wild pet to upgrade to uncommon. Rare stones can also be obtained as a rare drop after defeating a wild pet, or from the Sack of Pet Supplies that are rewarded by Pet Battle quests.
The Pet Journal also has several updates, with better filtering, searching, and the rarity of each pet being shown without any addons. There are several other smaller changes being made, such as an increase to a cap of 650 pets or pet quality being displayed in battles
Great Info on the basics
Offical Forum Links (Top is to the general Discussion / Bottom is the thread i will be copy/pasting from. Thanks/all credit to the authors Phaedra - Gilneas, Lithuen (Kilrogg), Nullberri (Lightbringer), Simca (Malfurion), Shalura (Anvilmar), Aieny (Medivh), Lilfrier (Mannoroth), Rescind (Lightning's Blade), Stryph (Anvilmar)
If you get a chance please tell them thank you for taking the time to create such an outstanding guide to pet battles
Info On rare Spawns
Basic Questions and Getting Started
What is this guide? Will it teach me how to battle and capture pets?
No – the intent of this guide isn't a how-to or strategy guide. My intent is to build an index of all the great information that available on pet battling that is currently scattered across sites and posts and condense it to one location. I'm hoping to keep this fairly up-to-date as best I can.
If you spot that I've got some information incorrect, some information is missing, or you have some information/link/macro/addon you'd like to share, please let me know in the comments and I will update.
What are pet battles?
Pet battles are one of the features Blizzard introduced with the Mists of Pandaria expansion for WoW. Currently, they're mini-games within the game, intended as an alternative action or for when there's down-time in the game. As there are really no rewards outside of pet-battle rewards (more pets, achievements, titles, pet battle supplies), they are not an alternative to gearing up your character. Aside from the pet tamer battle quests, you don't get XP from pet battles either. They exist purely as entertainment.
Interview with Cory Stockton (Mumper) about Pet Battles:
How do I get started with pet battles?
You need to have a character that is level 5 and have 10 gold.
As trial/free-to-play accounts cannot have more than 10g (nor can they use the AH or trade), you effectively need a full version of the game to play. However, you do not need to have an MoP level account. If you meet the requirements, head to a Pet Battle trainer to learn.. Last update reduced the price to 10g from 100g.
(link to locations: http://www.wowpedia.org/Battle_Pet_Trainer)
Once you've learned the skill, a couple of things will happen. You'll get a series of basic quests from the trainer which will teach you the basics of pet battling and you'll notice little green paws on your mini-map. Those paws represent pets you can battle with. You can select to track pet battles with the same mini-map button you use to track everything in game.
Are there any limits to pet collecting?
Right now, the total pet cap is 650. However, if you came into MoP with more than the cap, your extra pets are still there – you just can't catch additional pets. Once you dip below the cap, you can catch new pets.
In addition, you can only have up to 3 of each unique type of pet. Again, if you came into MoP with more than 3, those pets are still there. Until you release/cage the extras, you are unable to add more of those unique type of pets. For example, I started MoP with 9 Cornish Rex cats. Until I caged my extras, I was unable to learn/add additional ones.
However, some pets are unique no matter how many you had across your alts. Pretty much any Bind to Account pet (such as the Wind Rider Cub or the 4th anniversary Baby Blizzard Bear) and achievement pets (such as Nuts) will only exist as a single copy in your pet journal.
How do I obtain battle pets?
You may already have a pet collection and have all you need to get started. However, if you're brand new and are starting with nothing, you have several options. The Pet Trainer who taught you how to battle will also sell you a pet based on your starting race. You can visit any of the pet vendors in game to purchase additional pets (opposite faction pets will either require you to visit the neutral AH, your faction's AH, or roll an alt to purchase). Some pets are awarded from quests, some pets are drops, some pets are awarded from achievements, some pets are obtained from special events, some are for sale in the Blizzard store, and some are obtained from the trading card game.
A lot of battle pets are obtained via battling and capturing wild pets (this is covered further on in the FAQs).
Many battle pets are able to be sold on the AH. However, any pets that are captured in the wild are NOT able to be caged/sold. Initially in beta, you could sell captured pets. Unfortunately, people would buy high level pets and avoid the whole leveling procedure. Currently, Blizzard has disabled the selling of captured pets (this is discussed further on in the FAQs).
Warcraftpets is the definitive site for where to obtain pets. (link: http://www.warcraftpets.com/)
WoWPedia has a fantastic listing of all the pets in game as well.
It is important to note that not all pets are able to do battle. The balloon pets (Alliance, Horde, Darkmoon Faire), kite pets (Dragon, Kala'kuk, inscription kites), the Guild Page and Herald, and the Argent Squire/Gruntling are ineligible for pet battles. These guys are just for looking pretty while following you around.
What do you mean, “caging” pets?
Currently, some pets are able to be put into a cage. Wild battle pets are currently unable to be caged. In addition, BoA pets (such as the Blizzard store pets), pets from achievements (such as Nuts), pets that grant achievements (such as the Spirit of Competition), and pets from some quests (such as the Singing Sunflower and Northrend Children’s Week orphans) are also unable to be caged. Vendor pets (such as the Cornish Rex cat), dropped pets (such as the Emerald Whelpling), and some quest pets (such as the Azeroth and Outland Children’s Week rewards) are able to be caged.
The best way to be tell for sure if your pet can be caged is to right-click on it in the Pet Journal. If it can be caged, you’ll see that as an option. Once a pet is caged, it becomes an item in your inventory that you can trade or sell as normal.
What if I want to get rid of a pet that can’t be caged?
Your only option is to “release” the pets. This is also available by right-clicking on a pet in your Pet Journal. There is no animation of the pet running free – they merely disappear from your listed pets. Those more tender-hearted may find it hard to release some pets (Northrend orphans have nowhere else to go!)
When I right-click, I also get the option to rename. What is that?
After years of asking, pet collectors have finally gotten the right to rename their pets. It does exactly what you think it does – you can rename your Cornish Rex to Fluffy if you so desire.
Pet naming follows pretty much the same set of rules as naming your character: nothing obscene/offensive, no titles (such as Mr), no linkers (such as The), and no spaces/spacers. You can put multiple capital letters into a pet name, so you’ve got that going for you, which is nice.
Pet Rarity and Family
What does the color around the pet's portrait mean?
Like gear, battle pets have a quality associated with them. Currently, there's poor (grey), common (white), uncommon (green), and rare (blue) pets. Epic (purple) quality battle pets have been spoken of (I personally have not yet seen one – if someone confirms this, I will change this information). Blizzard has also spoken of adding legendary (orange) pets to the game. There are no epic or legendary pets available to PLAYERS, but NPC Tamers on Pandaria use Epic pets and the Grand Master Tamer (basically the end boss of NPC pet battles) has 3 Legendary pets.
Pet quality affects the total stat values a battle pet has. Poor quality pets will have lower stats than common quality pets of the same level, and so on. For fighting, it's recommended to use high quality pets over lower quality pets.
Currently, the in-game pet index is only showing pet quality for captured pets and armory is a little wonky. Mumper posted a listing of what pre-existing pets are of rare quality.
(link: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6080522555 )
Additionally, Shalura from Anvilmar has made a fantastic compilation of pre-existing pet qualities as well.
(link: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6712862299 )
Simca - Chiaroscuro posted this on the offical Forums :
So I posted a macro in a thread like 2 weeks ago and it kind of spread around the internet like wildfire (it's in the stickied guide in this forum and as part of Warcraftpet.com's guide). It was basically something that I did on the spot by taking snippets of code from a project I was working on and mashing them together. Today yet another person thanked me for this macro that unintentionally became popular, so I resolved to at least make it a little bit more convenient:
/run hooksecurefunc("PlaySoundKitID", function(Q) if Q==31584 then for i=1,C_PetBattles.GetNumPets(2) do SELECTED_CHAT_FRAME:AddMessage(C_PetBattles.GetName(2,i).." - ".._G["BATTLE_PET_BREED_QUALITY"..C_PetBattles.GetBreedQuality(2,i)]) end end end)
The above code can be put in a macro and run at any time. Once run, any pet battle you enter will have the enemy pet's name and rarity outputted to your chat. You only have to run this once per gameplay session (every time you logout, it will need to be run again). This saves the hassle of the old macro forcing you to keybind a special key and hit it in every fight.
Only two small potential issues with the above code:
1. Running it more than once will cause the output to happen more than once in every fight. If you press this five times, you will spam yourself pretty hard when you enter pet battles. This can be fixed simply by typing /reload (which will give you a clean slate).
2. If you are running an addon that changes Pet Battle Music, this macro may not be compatible (hard to say without looking at each specific addon). This is a much smaller issue though because if you're running an addon for Pet Battle Music, you probably aren't opposed to running an addon like Pet Battle Quality Glow instead of this macro anyway.
What does my pet's family mean?
If you're familiar with Pokemon (or Rock-Paper-Scissors), you'll understand about pet types/families. WoW pet battles have a type associated with them (for example, critter). This determines what other attack types they are strong against (critters are strong against undead type attacks) and weak against (critters are weak against beast type attacks), in addition to having a special ability associated with the type (critter types break out of crowd control more quickly). While a battle pet will have a base type, they can also have other type's moves (for example, a rabbit, which is a critter type, learns burrow, a beast move, at level 4).
Wowpedia has a very nice chart showing what battle pet types are strong and weak against.
Wait – now I’m confused. Pet learn moves other than their family moves?
Yes they can. Many pets learn moves outside their family type. As for example, a Rabbit will learn Burrow, a Beast-type move, at level 4. This move is still effective against Critter battle pets, despite the Rabbit being a Critter itself.
(WOWPedia link: http://www.wowpedia.org/Pet_Battle_System#Abilities)
Why do two pets that are the same rarity and species sometimes have different stats?
Simca from Malfurion:
The short answer is that each pet species has multiple different possible “natures”. Some pets may be based around Speed and others around Power or HP, or they may be perfectly balanced or anywhere in between (slight increase to one stat, slight decrease to another). For much more technical information, see: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6712952299#9
What types of pet battles are there?
Like much of the game, Pet Battles have a PvE and a PvP component.
PvE battles are those battles with wild pets or with the NPC Pet Tamers. This is the way if you want to collect pets and level them up.
(WoWPedia link: http://www.wowpedia.org/Pet_Tamer)
(WoWHead link: http://www.wowhead.com/search?q=pet+tamer)
PvP battles are battles with other players. On your Pet Battle tab, there's a button to find a random pet battle. Unlike PvP'ing in other parts of the game, you will not know who you are battling against. Character names are not displayed. Also, losses are not tracked, only wins. Your pet will gain XP from doing random PvP battles. However, dueling will not yield XP.
Where should I go to find pet battles?
Pretty much anywhere in the world. If you're just starting out, you'll want to level your pets along a similar zone path as a character. Lower level battle pets are found in lower level zones and progress slightly slower than character levels. For example, Elwyn Forest and Stormwind have level 1-2 pets while Westfall has level 2-4 pets. You'll want to start in a zone that has pets appropriate to your pets' levels.
Quintessence (Senior Content Manager at Warcraftpets.com) has compiled a listing of pet levels by zone. Useful for plotting out your pet-leveling plan.
My pets are all better than the wild pets I find – where do I go to find a fight that is near my level?
Simca from Malfurion:
The level of Wild Battle Pets roughly follows the level of the zone. For example, Durotar, a 1-10 zone, has level 1 Battle Pets. Northern Barrens, a 10-20 zone, has level 3 Battle Pets. Also, you should have gotten a quest from the Battle Pet trainer (if not, go back to him and doublecheck – sometimes it doesn’t appear until you have a level 3 pet) to go battle an NPC. After you beat each NPC, you get a quest to battle a tougher one. This will have you flying all over to the proper level zones to battle the increasingly difficult NPCs. Eventually, you might even run into one where you’re overmatched, and then that zone is a good place to level and train up in for you.
Why are all of the pets I find Beasts and Critters in this zone?
Battle pets tend to follow the flavor of the zone. In a forested zone, you’ll find forest pets. Near water, aquatic pets. Places with undead will have undead pets.
Simca from Malfurion:
For better or for worse, pets actually represent the creatures and critters that are in the zone naturally. In addition, some pets only spawn in certain areas or under certain conditions. For example, in Northern Barrens you will find Prairie Dogs and Adders all over in the form of Critters, so naturally they are the most commonly found Battle Pet in the zone. However, you can also find Small Frogs around the oases and Cheetah Cubs by their mothers and fathers around the large trees that provide lots of shade. In Southern Barrens, you can even rarely find Giraffe Cubs following the herds of roaming Giraffes.
If your pet of choice is weak against Beasts or Critters, you may be better off leveling in the northern part of Eastern Kingdoms because the zones that still suffer from the Undead invasion have many Undead Battle Pets to fight.
Oh no! My battle pet didn't last through the battle/has been wounded. What do I do?
You have several options to heal/revive your battle pets. One is to use your revive pet ability, which has an 8 minute cooldown. You can visit a stable master (able to be tracked via the mini-map) and pay 10s to heal/revive your pets. Lastly, you can use a Pet Bandage (obtained from Pet Supply bags from battling Pet Tamers) to heal/revive your pets.
One suggestion has been to park an alt near a stable master and log onto that character when you need to heal/revive, instead of coming in from the wilds. However, be aware that logging into a character places a short CD ( ~ 3 min) on interacting with a stablemaster (they ask for your to wait a few minutes) and your revive pets ability.
What the heck? The pet I'm fighting attacked me multiple times in the same turn – I call shenanagins!
Rescind from Lightning's Blade:
There are several occasions where a pet gets to seemingly execute more than one move in one round.
*A pet executes a multiple-hit attack
*A pet executes a normal attack, and a second attack from another turn (like a debuff) procs at the end of the round
*The speed of a pet changes, so it attacked second in one round, and then first in the next, making it look like it attacked twice
*You swap pets, giving your opponent a free shot at you. Their speed may be higher, allowing them to go first in the next round, effectively giving them back-to-back hits.
I was battling a wild pet and all of a sudden I was ganked by another player. What gives?
If you play on a PvP server (or are PvP flagged), you're still vulnerable to attacks from other players. Blizzard did not want the pet battle system to be a cop-out for those who choose to live dangerously. However, should you survive your PvP encounter, the pet you were battling will still be there, ready to continue your skirmish.
Mumper quote (link: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6193959516#5 )
The fact that players are vulnerable to PvP attacks while in a pet battle is intentional. However, a couple features that go along with this are not implemented yet.
First off, the exact pet you were fighting when you were broke out of pet battle will be respawned. Same quality, stats and skin color. Second, you will get a 3s damage shield that absorbs 50% of incoming damage to help negate the fact that you need time to recover after exiting the pet battle interface. Both of these will be in for the next build.
We feel its very important to keep the PvP aspect of the game intact and if you choose to play on a PvP server, you will certainly be fighting for those rare spawns. (This rule effects PVE servers as well but only in contested areas.)
How do I capture a wild pet?
You should have a trap icon on your pet battle bar. Once a wild pet gets below 35% health, this icon will light up and you can attempt to capture the pet. Your chances of capture increase the lower the health of the wild pet. This becomes a delicate dance of you trying not to kill the pet while keeping your own pets alive.
Once you've caught 50 wild pets, you'll earn the achievement, "Going to Need More Traps!" which rewards a Strong Trap. Currently bugged in game – tooltip and icon do not indicate the trap is stronger, nor does it appear to catch at a better rate.
Special note: occasionally in the wild, you'll see that an additional pet(s) has joined the battle.
If you're looking to capture more pets, pay attention to the quality of both pets you're fighting (the additional pets' portrait will display smaller next to the pet you're currently fighting). You can only use a trap once per fight. Don't waste a trap on a lower-quality pet if there's a rare pet waiting in to battle (I learned that the hard way).
Is there an advantage to raising a pet vs. catching a higher level pet?
Not in relation to the stats. Unlike Pokemon, caught and raised pets of the same unique type and quality (for example, two uncommon squirrels) will have their stats raised in the exact same manner. The only thing affected would be the "Raise X Pets to Level Y" achievements, if the pet caught is higher level than the achievement (catching a level 11 pet doesn't count for raising pets to level 10).
Lilfrier of Mannoroth explains:
There shouldn't be. Every pet of the same type (by "type," I mean all Squirrels, not all Critters) should have the same growth rate built into their stats. The only thing to watch for is rarity.
Aieny from Medivh explains:
As for the difference in pets, a level 1 raised to level 25 and a level 22 raised to level 25 should have the same stats (allowing for the known differences in stat distribution).
Is there a difference in pets based on color? Such as Rabbits... So far I have a brown Rabbit and a white Rabbit, both of poor rarity. Do they count as unique individuals, or is the color just cosmetic and I can release one?
Pet's coats (to avoid confusion with rarity color) are purely cosmetic. Their unique type (for example, Elfin Rabbit vs Snowshoe Rabbit vs Rabbit) is what counts towards number of pets caught. If you'd like to release your white Rabbit and just keep your brown Rabbit, feel free.
I just caught a wild pet. Why did it lose a level?
Blizzard has set-up the system so that wild pets of a certain level will always lose some levels upon being caught.
Catching any pet level 15 or under retains its current level.
Catching a level 16-20 pet will lose 1 level.
Catching a level 21-25 pet will lose 2 levels.
Why can't I trade/sell captured wild pets?
Because Blizzard said no. There was a point in beta where this was allowed, but problems arose (including people buying level 25 pets and steamrolling through the Tamer quests).
Mumper quote(link: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6148555633#8 )
We just finished a pass making all pets that are caught via pet battles in the world non-tradeable. This means these pets cannot be put in cages for trading or posting on the AH. We felt that the option to buy these pets on the AH would take away from the exploration/collection gameplay of the system.
This could always change in a future patch, but this is how it will go out with MoP. You should see the change in our next build.
Quests, Pet Leveling, and Pet XP
How do the Pet Battle Quests work since they're account-wide?
All the quests to battle the various Pet Tamers can only be done once per account. This means that if you start a quest on one character and switch to another, you *should* be able to continue without out, unless it's faction-specific trainers. However, this appears to be occasionally bugged for some people.
In fact, in order to get the meta achievements, you will need to do pet battles on alts of both factions. While capturing pets in every zone is do-able (if tricky) with a single faction, you will be unable to battle some of the Pet Tamers (link to list of Pet Tamers: http://www.wowpedia.org/Pet_Tamer).
Aieny from Medivh:
Quests are Battle.net account-wide, so they are shared by alts across realms and game accounts, just like the pets. So, if you are on the Horde questline, then start working on your Alliance character and complete the quest, you will receive credit for the quest...and be directed to turn in to the Horde questgiver. For obvious reasons, you cannot receive or turn in quests of the opposite faction, but you can complete them. You can also only be on a single questline at a time. So, if you started the Horde Kalimdor questline, you have to finish that before starting the Alliance Kalimdor, Alliance Eastern Kingdoms, or the Horde Eastern Kingdoms questline.
How does pet XP work? What about my pets in a party?
Pets gain XP by fighting other pets (either in PvE battles vs. wild/tamer pets or in PvP battles against other PC's pets). XP is needed to advance your pet's levels, much like your characters need XP to level. Pets do not gain a rested XP bonus.
Aieny from Medivh:
As far as experience gains go, you receive 25% less experience when you trap a solo pet versus killing the pet outright. Presumably (but untested), in multi-pet battles you gain experience based on the number of pets (so 2 pets means twice the experience for your team members that participated). Following along that assumption, you likely gain 25% less experience FOR THE TRAPPED pet, which means a reduction of 12.5% in a dual-pet battle and 6.75% reduction in a three-way battle.
XP is shared amongst all pets who actively participated in the battle. They need to use an ability to gain XP – merely having them start the battle and then switching them out will not make them eligible for XP. Additionally, pet needs to stay alive for the whole battle. If they die in battle (or after being switched out), they do not gain any XP - if two pets participate, but one dies, the survivor gets 100% of the experience.
Pets that are 5+ levels above the enemy receive no experience for killing or trapping the enemy pet. Pets receiving experience for the battle that are below the level of the enemy pet receive a "difficulty bonus" of an undetermined percentage.
What’s the highest level my pets can reach?
Currently, 25 is the max level a battle pet can reach.
My pet has reached level 10. How do I change what skills it can use in battle?
In the pet journal, add the pet whose moves you want to change to your team (if they aren't already on your current team). On their top abilities buttons you should see a little yellow downward pointing triangle. Click on that to select a different move.
Switching the pet out and back into your team roster will reset the moveset, make sure you change it to your prefered options before getting into a fight.