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Battle Pet Spotlight: Grumpy!

I think it’s only appropriate that I restart this feature with Grumpy, because my first time through Val’Sharah I completely missed him.

How could I have left that adorable little squished face behind? Look at him! Those jowls! The pointy little ears! What a cute little chunk!

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So who is Grumpy and where do you find him?

Grumpy is a beast-type battle pet located in the Broken Isles zone of Val’Sharah. You will need to be level 100 to access the Broken Isles. Once you arrive in Val’Sharah, make your way to Bradensbrook on the western coast. The quests in this area don’t send you to the little home where Grumpy is hiding, so he is very easy to miss.

The home where Grumpy can be found is located at 38, 65 if you have a coordinate add-on. If you don’t, it’s located directly below the “N” in Bradensbrook on your in-game map. Travel there and you’ll find a house that looks like this.

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Uh oh! Hurry inside and up the stairs and you’ll see Grumpy trapped at the second floor landing. Careful – that fire really does hurt. Grab Grumpy and get out!

Hooray! You now have your very own Gilnean mastiff pup. Even though he is slightly singed, you saved him from a far worse fate. What’s so special about Grumpy? Well, he’s the only battle pet that you obtain by saving his life from a burning building, so there’s that. And his attacks are all appropriately hound-themed. He’s the perfect companion for a worgen adventurer!

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Happy Expansionmas!

It has been a long time since I last updated this blog. I got a new job three months ago that has zapped all my time and energy. I traded the quiet part-time hours of the library for the stress of a full time job working with foster youth, so my WoW time took a nose dive. But with Warlords launching and new things to see and do I have made the extra effort to return! A month or two off of WoW (though unintentional) was just what I needed.

I don’t have a spectacular post lined up though. Instead I have some random thoughts in no particular order:

I am stuck at work today instead of enjoying the expansion. Responsible adult life sucks ass. I want to be home playing Warlords. Instead I am sitting at my cubicle bored and annoyed. Ef this noise.

I almost stayed up to play at the midnight launch but then thought better of it. I have to function at work at least a little bit. This appears to have been a sound choice because I hear a lot of people had trouble with server crashes and errors and lag. So not my cup of tea.

I have a headache. Can’t decide if this means I need more coffee or less.

Garrisons look awesome. I have mostly avoided any information on them, primarily because I stopped playing WoW and therefore stopped reading about it. I should read a guide or something before I dive head first into construction.

I want to collect all the pets. RIGHT NOW.

I have a feeling that I am gonna get left behind and left out because I can’t be online playing all day long.

The new toy box is awesome and appeals to my insane collecting addiction.

The new male night elf model is…not…what I wanted it to be. He runs fruity. Not sure what to think.

Maybe by the time I get home the kinks will be worked out, the servers will be stable, and I can play in peace.

I need Argi. So bad.

At level 100 I am going back and stomping Garrosh’s head until it resembles a pulverized watermelon.

I actually like the idea of a legendary ring.

I should probably get back to work. Enjoy the expansion!

Rare Pet Watch: Scorpling

It has been a while since my last RPW! Let’s talk about another pet that gives folks a little trouble: the scorpling.

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Most Azerothian battle pets are quite common. They’re numerous and scattered all over their zone, ready to be plucked up by eager pet battlers. Some pets, though, are annoyingly uncommon. Like the minfernal and scourged whelpling, the scorpling can be a pain in the ass to find. It’s not as rare as either of those, but neither is it as common as the glut of rabbits and beetles found in other zones. If you want it, be prepared to put in a bit of an effort, and doubly so if you want a rare. Its scarcity might lead you to believe it’s a superior pet in battle. You’d be sadly mistaken. The scorpling is mediocre at best. It’s no different than any other scorpid battle pet, but to a dedicated pet collector that makes little difference. If you want one, here’s what information I’ve collected in my hunt for a rare Scorpling.

Where?

Scorplings are found only in the Blasted Lands. They spawn in the hills south-east of the Dark Portal. If you run a coordinate add-on, they spawn around 60, 58. In my time camping and farming them, I have never seen one spawn to the sourth-west of the portal. I have only ever seen them on the plateaus of the hills to the south-east. You won’t find these as secondary battle pets anywhere in the zone. If you want one, you gotta catch it here.

When?

Time of day makes no difference here. I have seen them up mid day and in the middle of the night. The only impact time makes is on server population. If you want to catch one on a high population server, I would suggest camping out late at night or early in the morning to avoid competition.

How?

There’s nothing to it. No tricks to get them to spawn, no gimmicks, no events, no rare spawns. They’re either up or they’re not, it’s that simple.

Conventional internet forum wisdom states that killing other battle pets in the zone will force these to spawn. The theory is that battle pets work a lot like fishing nodes in a zone: only a set number can be up at any given time. To make more spawn, you have to kill (or fish) others. That’s all nice and dandy, but in all my time pet hunting, I have never seen anything to back that up. My theory is that people like to assert control over things that are out of their control. Pet spawns are not under their control, so they try to find ways around that. A lot of people state that after they flew around the Blasted Lands killing battle pets, a few scorplings spawned. That’s great. But correlation does not prove causation. I think the more likely explanation is that a few scorplings spawned while they were gone. The end. So if you have a lot of time on yours hands, go fly around killing battle pets in the Blasted Lands and let me know how that goes for you. But here’s my counter: I’m on a next-to-nothing population realm in a completely empty zone where no one (myself included) is killing battle pets…and the scorplings keep spawning.

There’s a lot of misinformation out there when it comes to rare battle pets. One person asserts that they spawn one at a time every ten minutes. Refuted: I watched them spawn 5-6 at a time. My very best advice to you is just to be patient. Plant an alt in the area and check back every hour or so. Best of luck!

Iron Man Challenge: Ashenvale Edition

Last time, we left off just as I was beginning to quest in Ashenvale. Today, I’m gonna ramble about my questing experience there and show you some random pictures, too. As before, click the screenshots to view a high-res version. They might even make a good desktop background!

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Ashenvale is gorgeous. It is one of the first zones I quested in back in classic WoW on Sylvestris, so it holds some sentimental value to me. Of course, it’s no longer the same after Cataclysm, but the peaceful green and blue woods and aura of night elfishness are familiar all the same.

Their lush boughs and verdant vales are a little deceptive, as I found out while trying to level my little hunter. On more than one occasion I found myself beating a hasty retreat from ravenous furbolgs and elite druids in bear form. The Horde is also to be handled delicately if you’re running as under-equipped as I am. About half way through the zone quests, I ran in to a tauren NPC kneeling beneath a tree. I cautiously crept closer to see what he was doing there, realized he was an elite level ?? guard, and ran away screaming. Good times.

Ashenvale is home to many threats. This includes but is not limited to wayward fire elementals:

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Invading Horde armies:

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And legions of demons:

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I recall two near-death experiences. One while completing the quest chain where you acquire Dartol’s Rod and help the friendly furbolg, and the other while trying to grab said rod out of a cave guarded by an elite bear patrol. Obviously I didn’t die or this post would be titled “Iron Man Challenge: Cue The Sad Trombone”. Heh.

There was so much more to Ashenvale than just fighting the Horde. I took some time to thoroughly explore the zone (my goal is to get both the exploration achievement and the questing achievement for every zone I participate in before moving on) and found some pretty little things tucked away in corners people don’t visit anymore.

Like this moonwell. Gosh I love moonwells.

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And these creepy trees tucked away in a demon camp in the south. I always loved the contrast between the gorgeous greens of the forest and the dead grey demon hollows hidden away out of sight. Near these particular trees I found a rare spawn demon and two flanking demonic guards. I killed all three without any hassle, I’m proud to say.

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Bashiok? Is that you…?

I think the size of this fallen, half buried statue really gives you some idea of how massive the elvish empire was before it crumbled during the invasion by the Burning Legion (thanks a lot, Azshara). I can only just imagine how incredibly large that statue must have been before it was toppled.

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I made a point of visiting Bough Song while I was in eastern Ashenvale. When I was a new player, I died here a few times to the elite dragons. Now that these dragons aren’t elite anymore, I took my revenge and slaughtered as many of them as I could, including some of the larger drakes that came out of the portal.

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I also paid my respects to the monument left in honor of Grom Hellscream. It’s a shame his son has done nothing worth honoring.

Mouse-over text reads: "Here lies Grommash Hellscream, Chieftain of the Warsong Clan. In many ways, the curse of our people began and ended with Grom. His name meant "Giant's Heart" in our ancient tongue. He earned that name a hundred fold as he stood alone against the demon Mannoroth - and won our freedom with his blood. Lok'Tar Ogar, Big Brother. May the Warsong never fade. -Thrall, Warchief of the Horde"

Mouse-over text reads: “Here lies Grommash Hellscream, Chieftain of the Warsong Clan. In many ways, the curse of our people began and ended with Grom. His name meant “Giant’s Heart” in our ancient tongue. He earned that name a hundred fold as he stood alone against the demon Mannoroth – and won our freedom with his blood. Lok’Tar Ogar, Big Brother. May the Warsong never fade. -Thrall, Warchief of the Horde”

Exploring Ashenvale and completing all of the quests got me to level 29. So far I haven’t had much of an issue surviving as long as I can keep my battles one-vs-one. And now that I have Freezing Trap, I can take care of any battles that aren’t in my favor. I’m keeping myself entertained by shooting screenshots and switching out my active minipet every level as a reward.

I have decided not to pet battle as I level up, because pet battles allow you to gain experience without any real risk of death, and that doesn’t seem to be in the proper spirit of the Iron Man Challenge.

Finally, Fluttershy my ever-loyal moth got an upgrade to a prettier model today. I exchanged the starter moth that draenei hunters come with for one of the blue moths found on Bloodmyst Isle.

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Wish me luck as I head into Stonetalon for the next set of quests!

Post-Blizzcon Reactions

A few days ago I made a prediction post. I then bought myself a virtual ticket (worth the money, in my honest opinion), hooked the laptop up to our flatscreen, and geeked out for a few days.

First off, I would love to attend Blizzcon in person some day. I don’t live all that far from Anaheim, but the cost of the physical tickets is a limiting factor for me. Add on cost of gas, cost of lodging and food and it gets a little out of my price range…by several hundred bucks. Some day. Some day.

Even watching the online feed, I was enamored of the entire event. So many people wandering around that had the same interests that I did. So many excited folks who loved the game I loved. Costumes! Such amazing cosplayers. Did you catch the costume contest the first day? The guy dressed as the practice dummy got my vote for the grand prize, but everyone had such wonderful costumes it was hard to pick!

The vibe of the whole event was just so infectious. Everyone there loved Blizzard games. No one (I hope) would pay that much for a ticket just to go there and hate everything they saw. So it was a gathering of super passionate gamers all excited for new announcements. It’s the kind of atmosphere I sorely miss around the internet, where so many people are critical and negative and sometimes downright nasty little trolls. It’s sometimes hard to stay positive about a game when so many people are screaming negativity all around you. Blizzcon was just stuffed full of happy, smiling, excited people who cheered every little announcement and laughed at every silly joke and I loved it. It was refreshing.

Watching Blizzcon got me super pumped for the next expansion, even if it is still a long ways off. And seeing all of these announcements with my own eyes helped me make my own opinions about them, rather than reading about them second-hand from a fan site and picking up the author or columnist’s opinions. No matter how hard we try, we infuse everything we write with our own feelings, and I wanted to see these new features without having someone else’s opinion taint my own. The result? I’m psyched.

But moving on. I made some predictions. Let’s see how I did.

A New Race
Nope. Not in this expansion, apparently. I’m sort of surprised, and sort of not. We are going to Draenor and their two major races are already playable. But wouldn’t it be cool to see arakkoa or another indigenous race made playable? Then again, these aren’t the arakkoa we knew in Outland…regardless, I’m sad that we will see neither a new race nor a new class this expansion, because I love the possibilities they bring to the game play.

Ten New Levels
Spot on! Though we can all agree that was pretty obvious. I’m happy to see ten levels instead of five, maybe just for the nostalgia of Wrath and Burning Crusade eras.

A New Planet
Called it! So super excited to see Draenor in it’s prime before it was shattered. The art for the new zones looked incredible and I cannot wait to see them in person.

A Return to Old Lore
I wanted to see some of Azeroth’s already established names come back into play and I got it. So many orcs. Blackhand, Durotan, omg. So excited. I love orcs, no matter how many of them we keep running in to. The only orc I don’t like is Garrosh.

A New Profession
Nothing here. It was wishful thinking anyway. Then again, much of the expansion has yet to be announced. Maybe we will see a new secondary profession, or major overhauls to old ones?

Mobile Pet Battles
With everything that has been introduced with Warlord’s of Draenor, I have to admit what I was most looking forward to was something about a mobile version of our pet battle system. I was disappointed that there wasn’t an exclusively pet battles panel (and very much aware of why that wouldn’t happen) but somewhere towards the end of the second day, a fan asked a question that mirrored my own heart: what about mobile pet battles? And Cory Stockton, my favoritest person ever, gave the best answer he possibly could: we think it would be awesome, we want to do it and we’re looking in to it, but it’s not in the works yet. Rest assured that if this ever makes it off the drawing board and to an iPad near you, I will be the happiest person alive.

An Updated Transmog System
Another fan asked this question, and while I can’t find it right now for a quote the answer was basically that they’re looking for better ways to do the transmog system in WoW, and they almost announced it at Blizzcon but didn’t want another Dance Studio debacle should they be forced to scrap those plans. I am begging on bended knee for a system like the upcoming Diablo 3 system.

New Character Models
There really was no chance this wasn’t going to be announced. It’s a major draw for many people. One of my friends who quit WoW back in Cata saw the new models and announced she wanted to play again (for reasons more numerous than that, but it was a factor). I watched the art panel with my jaw on the floor. The new art for the character models is astonishing, folks. If you haven’t seen it for yourself yet, Google it. Now. Only a few races got the full preview at Blizzcon but the art panel revealed a bit of artwork for several other races. Undead males look terrifyingly awesome and male tauren, always one of my favorites, just look incredible. I’m hopeful that male night elves will blow me away as well, because after so many years playing a blobby, muscle-bound mutant with Christmas hams for thighs and hips like a prepubescent boy, I’d love a change.

The Return of the Legion
Doesn’t look like they’re involved in this expansion, but that’s alright. Orc clans make me just as happy.

Stuff I Didn’t Predict
Player housing was one of those features I didn’t think we’d ever see. The farm at Halfhill was a step in the right direction but seemed to be so lacking I figured it would be a long time before we ever saw anything close to real housing. And I was wrong. Garrisons look like the most intriguing feature so far in this new expansion and I can’t wait to get my hands on them and start building, tinkering, and generally spending far too much time improving my own little plot of land. I’m also excited to poke at the pet battle portion of the garrison, which was touched on briefly during the panels. Breeding my own battle pets? Alright, I’ll bite. That could be fun.

As we learn more about Warlords of Draenor over the coming months, I’m certain this excitement won’t wane. But I feel it is important to remember that we’re still playing Mists of Pandaria, and we ought to be enjoying what is in front of us just as much. So I’m gonna hop back in to the beautiful world we have to play in right now and get started on all the things I want to get done before Warlords launches. See you guys in Azeroth!

PS: I yelled obscenities at the TV screen when they announced that Garrosh would escape before his trial and flee to Draenor. I’m not ashamed of it. That fucker should have been beheaded, end of story.

Rare Pet Watch: Unborn Val’kyr

When I set out to write these little pet guides, I knew I would have to limit it to the pets I was able to catch myself. After all, if I can’t catch it, I have no business writing a guide on it. So when I caught my Unborn Val’kyr yesterday, I knew it was time to make this guide. Bear with me, it’s a long one.

The Unborn Val’kyr was introduced in patch 5.3 as a new elusive undead pet for us to chase after. She was intended to be rare, but not quite as rare as the minfernal or the scourged whelpling. If you have camped and captured either of these pets, you know about what to expect when you go after the Val’kyr.

Unlike her rarer cousins, the Val’kyr has quite a few spawn points: 27 total, in fact. This means that camping her is more difficult than camping a pet that spawns all in the same spot. But for the dedicated pet collector, the val’kyr is a worthwhile investment that should not be foregone due to the daunting task of collecting her. Hopefully the information I was able to collect during my time hunting her will be useful to you in your hunt as well.

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Where?

The Unborn Val’kyr spawns only in Northrend, excluding the zone of Wintergrasp. She has three spawn locations per zone and can spawn at any one of them randomly. Only one val’kyr can spawn at any time in all of Northrend. You won’t ever find more than one up. She can spawn in Sholazar and then next time in Grizzly Hills. There is no discernable pattern to her spawns. Be prepared to trek all over the continent in search of this pet. This map of Northrend shows all of her spawn locations in blue and the suggested route to travel in red. For more precise locations, the following are her spawn points as you would input them to a coordinates addon like TomTom:

/way Icecrown 47.9, 86.6
/way Icecrown 73.8, 64.5
/way Icecrown 43, 33

/way Storm Peaks 42.5, 78.5
/way Storm Peaks 65, 41
/way Storm Peaks 29.0, 50.0

/way Borean Tundra 48, 8
/way Borean Tundra 80, 48
/way Borean Tundra 32.7, 60.1

/way Sholazar Basin 58.5, 22.0
/way Sholazar Basin 44.47, 69.59
/way Sholazar Basin 36.8, 19.4

/way Zul’Drak 57.0, 39.8
/way Zul’Drak 75, 22
/way Zul’Drak 24.3, 63.7

/way Dragonblight 82, 66
/way Dragonblight 26.9, 54.1
/way Dragonblight 64.4, 43.7

/way Grizzly Hills 61, 18
/way Grizzly Hills 79.60, 50.79
/way Grizzly Hills 26, 57

/way Howling Fjord 71.91, 43.39
/way Howling Fjord 45, 43
/way Howling Fjord 68.10, 67.63

/way Crystalsong Forest 19 57
/way Crystalsong Forest 43 44
/way Crystalsong Forest 67 49

When?

The val’kyr can spawn at any time of day or night. I caught mine at roughly 2pm. There has been much debate and inquiry into how to force her to spawn, since it was originally hinted that she only spawns under certain circumstances. But the issue has been laid to rest: nothing the player can do will influence her spawn rate. Simply put, it’s out of your hands. However, players have noted (anecdotally) that she respawns faster after a successful capture than after a failed attempt. So if a player battles her and fails to catch her, she will respawn much later than she would have had they succeeded. Anecdotal forum evidence suggests her respawn timer is less than 2 hours.

How?

Since you cant influence her spawn rate, there’s no need to run yourself ragged trying. My best advice to you, the intrepid pet collector, is to input all the coordinates I listed into TomTom (or whatever you use) and have them displayed on your map in-game. You can either camp one specific spot, or you can fly loops around Northrend. If you have limited time, I recommend parking an alt or two in Northrend at a specific spawn location and checking them periodically, especially late at night and early in the morning. But if you have time to spare, actively flying around seems to be a better bet. That’s how I found mine. I started my circuit in Zul’Drak and found her in Borean Tundra. With 310% flying each circuit takes about 15-20 minutes at most. If you run in to another pet hunter flying the same circuit, go the opposite way.

Quite a few of her spawn points are accessible to a low level character, so long as they have means of transportation. A character as low as level 60 with a flying mount can reasonably camp out at some of her spawn locations without fear of dying.

If you do manage to find her, congratulations! You’re only half way done with this nightmare. The val’kyr has two abilities which cause it to die in combat. One of these abilities, Unholy Ascension, is permanent. If she casts this during your combat, she is dead, and you are done. Go find another one. The second ability, Haunt, is not permanent. She will “die” and enter your active pet as a spirit to deal damage. Do not allow your pet to die while Haunt is active. Heal, absorb, whatever you can do to keep it alive until Haunt is over and the val’kyr reappears. She was hotfixed soon after going live so that she wouldn’t cast these abilities very often, but she can still use them. For what it’s worth, mine never did anything but cast a simple attack (not sure if it was Shadow Slash or Shadow Shock). Your best strategy is to bring her down quickly and cage her as soon as possible.

Good luck!

Rare Pet Watch: Moon Moon

Moon Moon, for those of you who don’t crawl around the internet often, is an internet meme which began on Tumblr. It features a mentally challenged wolf doing very odd things in moderately amusing photographs (wild wolves are about as silly as domestic cats apparently) with dumb captions…it’s basically like any other animal meme on the web, except this one made it’s way into WoW.

For those who don’t give a crap about internet memes (I don’t) then here’s the low down on this pet: Moon Moon is a wolf battle pet with a unique model obtainable from a rare boss found only during the Darkmoon Faire. Rare drop off a rare mob found only one week out of the month? Yeah, I’d say that qualifies this little guy as a rare pet!

Where?

Moon Moon is found as a drop off the rare spawn boss Moonfang, who spawns on the Darkmoon Isle. You can get to the isle via portals located in Goldshire (Alliance) and just south of Thunder Bluff (Horde). Take the portal and head south-west from there. The shortest way to Moonfang is to cross through the woods and jump down the cliff. Moonfang spawns at approximately 39, 43.

When?

The Darkmoon Faire occurs only one week a month, beginning on the first Sunday of the month. Check your in-game calendar for dates and times for your region. Moonfang is only around for seven days a month, so if you’re hell bent on this pet you will want to make the most of it.

How?

Moonfang isn’t so much a conventional rare spawn as she is the end result of an event. This event cycles about once every hour and begins by the spawning of numerous Moonfang Snarlers. These are non-elite wolf mobs that spawn all over the forested areas of the island. Kill a number of them (a large number, probably 15+) and Moonfang Dreadhowls will spawn. These are elite and difficult to solo, but thankfully there are a lot of people on the island waiting for Moonfang. Kill a few of those (about 2 or so) and Moonfang will spawn to avenge her fallen children.

While killing the non-elite and elite wolves, you will notice emotes in your chat log if you’re paying attention. “There is a pained howl from deep within the woods” and variants of this pop up every so often as you kill wolves. Kill enough, and the text “BEWARE: Moonfang Dreadhowls now roam the woods” will appear in the middle of your screen like a raid warning. Similar text flashes on your screen when Moonfang spawns, so missing her spawn is next to impossible.

Moonfang hits very hard and can be difficult for smaller groups. Larger groups of players can zerg her without a lot of difficulty, but you should be wary of her all the same. Her attacks are:

[Leap for the Kill]: Leaps at a target and all enemies within range of that target suffer massive damage. Get out of the way FAST.

[Moonfang’s Tears]: An AoE similar to Starfall. It is easy to spot and easy to stay out of, just get out of the white lights.

[Moonfang’s Curse]: This transforms all enemies close to Moonfang into her servants. If you get caught in it, you will be transformed into a worgen and you will heal her. Run away when you see it being cast. This is mostly a concern for melee.

[Call the Pack]: This summons non-elite wolf adds, and a ton of them will appear. One for every person within 40 yards of Moonfang. They should be killed so they don’t eat your healers.

So the basic strategy is to run away from any bright lights on the ground, run away from her when she casts Curse, and don’t stand next to anyone who is being targeted for Leap. Keep the ads off healers and if you die, run back quickly.

A few tips: Reports suggest that Moonfang can reset if kited too far from her spawn location. Don’t do that. Also, if no one is around to kill the Snarlers to start the event (or if people are being dumb and ignoring them) they will eventually despawn and the event timer will reset. Kill the wolves!

When Moonfang is dead she can drop a few different vanity items, which includes the pet [Moon Moon]. If this is your first kill, she will drop an item which begins a quest. If she died and you don’t have the option to loot her, don’t panic. Moonfang has no trash loot (no coins, no currency of any sort, and no grey items) so if she didn’t drop one of her unique items for you, you won’t be able to loot. It’s not a bug and you’re not missing your shot at loot. You just didn’t get anything this time.

From personal experience I can say that the non-elite Moonfang Snarlers begin spawning again about 45-50 minutes after Moonfang dies. I have been able to reliably camp and kill Moonfang with a 50 minute timer set. I kill her, set the timer, go do other things, then come back when the timer goes off. Anecdotal evidence suggests the pet has a reasonable drop rate. Not too low, not too high. But as always, RNG is nobody’s friend. The pet can be caged and traded, so check your local auction house if camping isn’t going your way.

Best of luck getting the pet to drop!

A Guide to the Timeless Isle Pets

I’ve been enjoying this latest patch and it’s brand new island, mostly because I enjoy content that I can experience by myself and at my own pace. So far I have done nothing but run around in circles killing things, and while that probably sounds like a recipe for boredom, I actually quite enjoy it. The island is beautiful, there’s always a rare spawn up to kill, and I enjoy hanging out with my server’s community. I might come to regret it later, but for now I like hanging out on an island with the folks who call Bloodhoof home.

One thing I’m not too keen on is the pet situation. I love all the new pets, and I love that many of them are fairly unique, and I adore the fact that every patch comes with buckets of new pets…but I don’t care for the drop rates on these pets, and I don’t enjoy running frantically all over the island trying to tag a rare spawn before it’s five second lifespan is up. I’ve done a bit of research and testing since the patch launched in order to maximize my own pet collecting efficiency, so I thought I would post it here so other people might benefit.

Let’s start with a simple overview of the island. You must be level 90 to access the Timeless Isle, and you can do so either by flying there all on your own or by talking to Chromie, who now sits atop Mogu’Shan Palace. She’ll give you a quest and a teleport to the island. Once there, you’ll be given a few quests to orientate yourself with the island, but there are no major storyline or quest chains here. The zone isn’t on rails, it isn’t unlocked piece by piece and it isn’t phased in any way. Nothing is stopping you from ignoring the quests and running amok all on your own.

The island is covered in elite mobs, most of which are easy to solo if you aren’t a complete dunce. There are also numerous treasure chests to open, all of which are specific to you. No fighting with other people over chest spawns! There are also a ton of rare spawns to kill, events to participate in, and five world bosses to poke. The fifth, Ordos, is only accessible if you have the legendary cape from Wrathion, but he doesn’t drop a pet so who cares.

Take some time to orient yourself on the island. It feels a bit overwhelming at first because almost everything drops a pet. But instead of drowning in the sea of rare spawns, I recommend going about it one pet at a time. Focus on one, and when you get it, go to the next. Mods like TomTom and NPCscan can be invaluable when you’re camping things. New with this patch is a skull icon on your minimap whenever a rare is nearby. No more target macro spamming, no more guessing. If a rare is up, it will appear on your minimap as plain as day.

I’ve had success with the following camping style: park yourself somewhere close to a rare spawn location. Add the rare spawn to NPC’s database so that when it spawns, NPC scan will yell at you. Wait. When the rare spawns, kill it, then set a timer for 30 minutes. You can now log out, switch to an alt, go make dinner, whatever. When the timer goes off, make sure you’re back at your camping spot. You will want to clear your cache between spawns, too.

Armed with a good camping strategy, a few good addons, and a lot of patience, you’re probably ready to tackle the Timeless Isle. So let’s look at what pets it has for us.

First off, here’s a map I made on which I have marked every rare spawn that drops a pet.

I am a bad cartographer.

I am a bad cartographer.

While the Timeless Isle brings with it 21 new pets, only 8 of them are dropped by rare spawns. The map I made above shows the spawn locations of each rare spawn visually, and I will also provide coordinates for those who use them. All rares on the island are unable to be tapped, meaning that no matter who hits them first, everyone who participated gets loot. Now then, a list of the rares with as much info as I can provide.

Monstrous Spineclaw: This rare crab drops a [Spineclaw Crab] pet. Unlike other rares which have a set spawn timer, this rare has a chance to spawn in the place of any elite crab on the island. In order to see it spawn, you will need to kill the crabs. As such, its spawn location varies and is difficult to camp.

Imperial Python: This snake drops a [Death Adder Hatchling]. Like the Spineclaw crab above, the python spawns in place of one of the many Death Adders on the island. Killing the adders has a chance to spawn the Python. He’s up fairly often, and more than one python can be alive at one time. He hits extremely hard and must be killed quickly, so wait for backup.

Zhu’Gon the Sour: This alemental spawns at 37, 77 right in the middle of Old Pi’jiu. An event must be completed before the rare will spawn. When the event begins, alementals will swarm the village. Killing ten will force Zhu-Gon to appear. He drops a [Skunky Alemental]. He has a 30-60 minute respawn timer.

Gu’chi the Swarmbringer: This is a rare grub the size of a small whale and he drops the [Swarmling of Gu’chi]. He is on a spawn timer of approximately 30-60 minutes and spawns at 41, 80, or just south east of Old Pijiu. He will patrol in a north-easterly direction if not killed, but nine times out of ten he is slaughtered seconds after spawning.

Bufo: This frog looks only slightly different than the other frogs hopping about in the Croaking Hollow on the south east side of the island. He has multiple spawn points within a few yards of each other but does not need to spawn in place of a regular frog. His respawn timer is 30-60 minutes. Like the frogs, he deals a stacking debuff which causes instant death at 10 stacks, so be sure you can burn him quickly or else wait for reinforcements to arrive. He drops a [Gulp Froglet].

Leafmender: Hiding among his fellow sprites, he drops an [Ashleaf Spriteling] when killed. He spawns at 67, 44, along the northern part of the Blazing Way. His respawn, like all rares on the Isle, is 30-60 minutes.

Garnia: This Pandaren elemental spawns way up at Ruby Lake, at 64, 27. The only way to get to her is to hitch a ride on one of the island’s albatrosses. The best place to catch one is around 33, 54 at the stairs of the Celestial Court. Tag an albatross by hitting it once with a ranged attack as they swoop through the court. It will pick you up and carry you around the island (slowly) in a set path. After several minutes you will pass over Ruby Lake. Attack the albatross again to force it to stop midair over the lake, and kill it. You will fall into the lake. It is recommended that you park an alt here at the lake and check frequently rather than making the trip up several times a day. Garnia hits very hard and her primary attack must be interrupted. She drops a [Ruby Droplet] when killed.

Spirit of Jadefire: Another Pandaren elemental, the Spirit drops a [Jadefire Spirit]. It can be found deep in the Cavern of Lost Spirits, the entrance of which is at 43, 40. Like Garnia, interrupts will greatly reduce the damage taken when fighting the Spirit.

So that covers the pets that you must obtain by killing a rare spawn. Keep in mind that the drop rates for these pets are fairly low, so you will need to kill them repeatedly. My best advice to any would-be pet collectors is not to run all over the island chasing the latest announcement in general chat. Park your butt firmly in one place (I prefer hanging out at Pi’jiu since multiple rares spawn very close by) and wait. Watch TV, listen to music, annoy your friends in guild chat. But camping one spot will ensure you get a kill, rather than forcing you to race around the island and always end up being two seconds too late for that rare you really wanted. Finally, these rares die fast. Like, really fast. So pay attention and get your tag in as soon as possible. Tabbing out for even a minute might cause you to miss the spawn and the kill entirely.

Now that we’ve looked at rare spawn pets, lets look at the pets the isle offers that can be picked up by other means.

More wonderful map making.

More wonderful map making.

The map above shows you the relative locations of all pets on the isle which do not drop from a rare spawn. However, it excludes wild battle pets and pets given as a reward from the Celestial Tournament. We’ll cover those further down. As you can see, there are a ton of pets available on the island that don’t require you to camp for weeks on end.

[Dandelion Frolicker]: This pet drops from an event which takes place around 45, 72. At this location there is a large tree surrounded by friendly little sprites. About once every 15 minutes or so, a large pink crystal will spawn nearby. Click the crystal, and these sprites will attack you. Murder them in droves and a Scary Sprite will spawn (at a rate of about 1 every 10ish seconds if you’re killing sprites fairly fast). Kill the Scary Sprites and they have a chance to drop the Frolicker. This event is a “solo” event, as whoever clicks the crystal is the only person who can attack the sprites. However, if you are in a group everyone can loot the Scary Sprites and you can receive healing while you go on a rampage.

[Azure Crane Chick]: This pet drops from the numerous birds’ nests found on the ground all over the island. The yellows dots on the map represent only a tiny handful of total nest spawn places. Anywhere you see cranes hanging out, there will be a nest. Looting the nest usually awards only a small amount of coins, and will always aggro nearby cranes. But sometimes you’ll get a pet out of it, too.

[Bonkers]: This pet drops from treasure chests in a cave located at 57, 42. Speak to the hozen inside and purchase a key from him for 500 coins. Use the key to open a chest – any chest, it doesn’t matter which. The usual reward is a number of coins, usually several hundred. You can also receive epic BoA armor items, Burdens of Eternity, and, more rarely, a pet. You can buy as many keys as you want, so go nuts.

[Sky Lantern]: Finally a pet that doesn’t require any funny business to obtain. If you have 7500 Timeless Coins, you can purchase this peaceful lantern from Ku-mo at approximately 40, 63, on the southern edge of the Celestial Court. This lantern cannot participate in pet battles, but it’s pretty all the same.

[Ominous Flame]: This pet has a small chance to drop off the elite Foreboding Flames inside the Cavern of Lost Spirits at 43, 40. These flames die quickly if you’re all roided out with Timeless Isle buffs, but you will still want to make a habit of interrupting their primary spell attack. Click on the fires inside the cave for added defense against their attacks.

[Jademist Dancer]: Like the Ominous Flame, this pet drops off of the elite elemental spirits flitting around on the beach at about 25, 29, on the very northern coast of the island. These, too, should be interrupted as often as possible to minimize the damage you sustain in combat.

If you’re looking for easy pets to add to your collection, these require no camping, no headaches when you miss a spawn, and no pulling your hair out because other people killed a rare faster than you could whip out a Moonfire. Most of them simply require a little patience and a little coin.

The next pets the island has to offer are wild battle pets, which you must fight and capture. While adding three more moths to your collection may sound boring, these three moths are worthwhile additions to any team. They each have a unique set of moves which makes them unlike any moth we’ve had before. Two of them can be captured on the ground but the third must be sought high above it, on the windy peaks accessible only by albatross ferry.

More MS Paint!

More MS Paint!

The above map shows the approximate spawn locations of the three wild moths on the isle. The Flamering and Ashwing Moths can be fought and captured all over the island. Both will appear as primary pets (those places marked on the map) and a secondary battle pets to other moths. The Skywisp Moth only spawns high up on mountain tops, where it must be reached by albatross. I was able to catch a ride on a friendly bird (which I then murdered by way of saying thanks) to a slope high above the Blazing Way at about 74, 34 (not marked on map, my bad) where a group of 4 or 5 moths were hanging out. The birds can be tricky because if you stop DPS they will continue to fly, so more than once I missed my mark and had to wait for the bird to come around over another mountain top before it was safe to kill the bird and drop down. The Skywisp moth does in fact appear as a secondary pet when you battle other moths, so it is possible to catch without every bothering with the slow as molasses bird taxi.

You can also reach these peaks by swimming out into the water until you can mount on a flying mount, then flying up as high as you can over the place you want to end up (such as over the lake where Garnia spawns). Then dismount and use a glider or a slow fall mechanism in order to pilot yourself to your destination. I gave it a shot and died spectacularly, so use at your own risk. Gliders can be purchased from Ku-mo, the same little Pandaren boy who sells the lantern pet.

Finally, the last pets you can obtain on the island are those you can purchase from the Celestial Tournament. I haven’t managed to win the tournament yet, so this guide will not feature walk-throughs or helpful tips on how to beat it. Sorry. If at some point I manage to get it down, I will write about it so others can do it too. But I haven’t, so I won’t. The gist of the Tournament is this: you enter a solo scenario where the Celestial Court is full of pet trainers instead of standing empty. You fight three initial trainers who each have a team of three legendary pets. I managed to defeat these just fine, actually. But then you must defeat all four of the Celestials in battle, and they are hard. Win the tournament and you will receive currency used to purchase one of four new pets modeled after the celestials: [Xu-Fu, Cub of Xuen], [Yu’la, Broodling of Yu’lon], [Zao, Calfling of Niuzao], and [Chi-Chi, Hatchling of Chi-Ji].

Patch 5.4 introduced a lot of new pets, and most of them can be obtained right here on the isle. Hopefully this guide and the maps I painstakingly slopped together in Paint will help you figure out what’s what and where it is so you can gather pets to your heart’s content.

Happy collecting!

Battle Pet Spotlight: Flamering Moth

Hi guys. Long time no see. Let’s talk about one of the pets that came in with 5.4

I was kind of disappointed when I saw that all the new wild pets in this latest patch were moths. Really? More moths? We already have, like, twenty. But fine, if you insist. I’ll catch three more friggin’ moths. This was my attitude until today, when I pulled out my Flamering Moth to do a little leveling in the Valley of the Four Winds. The aquatic pets there were chewing through my Bat and Crow within a few battles and I needed a temporary alternative while my heal was on cooldown. The second I brought the moth into combat, I knew I had to write a BPS about it.

He’s a strong little moth, and moths tend to be strong pets in general. But moths, at least all pre-5.4 moths, share the exact same move set. If you have one moth, you pretty much have them all. But the 5.4 moths break that mold and I think the Flamering moth is the best of the three. It’s one of the few flying pets with a strong self heal, making it a great choice for chewing your way through aquatic pets.

If you get your hands on this pretty little firestarter, keep a few tips in mind for optimal performance. First, try to use your heal after you take a big hit. The moth’s heal (Healing Flame) heals for a base amount and then an extra amount based off of the damage you just took, so don’t waste it after you just got hit for 100 damage. Save it for after large hits, such as from a geyser or dive attack, and it will heal for a lot more. Second, keeping your health above 50% guarantees that you get the speed boost from the pet’s flying-type passive ability. Being the faster pet means the moth will hit harder with Alpha Strike and will be able to squeak off heals at more opportune moments.

Breed ID: Being a flying pet, the Flamering moth doesn’t benefit from extra speed, and all breeds have nearly equal speed anyway. A moth with a higher attack, such as breeds 8 and 18, will hit harder and heal its self for more. Keep your health above 50% and you will always have the faster pet and thus will do more damage. .

Where to find it: The Flamering moth was introduced as one of 3 new wild pets on the Timeless Isle. Any level 90 character can visit the isle either by flying out there (it’s off the south-eastern coast of the Jade Forest) or by speaking to Chromie at Mogu’shan Palace in the Vale for a quick teleport. They generally appear along the eastern half of the island, and can appear as both primary and secondary battle pets.

Pets with similar skill sets: Like I stated before, all moths except the three introduced in 5.4 have the exact same set of abilities. But no other moth has a self heal.

Pair it with: For extra healing oomph, pair this moth with a pet who can turn the weather into Moonlight (25% bonus healing). Abilities that cause Moonlight are Moonfire and Starfall and can be found on a number of different pets. The moth’s move, Nimbus, is handy if you pair it with pets who have moves with sub-par hit chances. Cast Nimbus, swap in a pet with a low-hit-chance nuke, and have fun.

Pro Tip: I used the moth to great effect today while farming pets in the Valley. The moth’s self heal made it a real monster against the legions of aquatic pets in the area. I paired it with a Darkmoon Cub and used his Devour ability to self heal. The moth is strong against aquatics and the cub is strong against critters, and there’s virtually no other kind of pet you’ll encounter in the Valley. I was able to go long periods of time without stopping to heal or revive my pets outside of battle, and it really made things more efficient on my end. Many other beast type pets have Devour, and since that is the key here you can use one of them instead of the cub. Happy farming!

Battle Pet Spotlight: Nexus Whelpling

Sometimes a pet will come along that is one in a million (or, you know, one in 547). The Nexus Whelpling is my go-to pet for battling flying creatures. He wreaks havoc against anything with wings with his hard-hitting magic abilities, but takes negligible damage himself. He’s the perfect counter pet to any tamer’s flying pets. He has an amazing mix of utility and offensive spells that makes him a solid choice for PvP pet battling too! Against a trainer, start with Arcane Storm to set the weather to Arcane Winds, then cast Mana Surge for a devastating three round attack with increased damage during the storm. It’s hard to imagine any flying pet surviving that, but just in case, Tail Sweep will sweep your opponent right off the field. Bye bye. For PvP, Sear Magic can be a life saver against debuff-happy opponents. Wild Magic can be cast as a last ditch effort just before your whelpling dies to give your next pet a competitive edge. Any way you look at it, there’s no reason not to add a Nexus Whelpling to your team!

Breed ID:

The Nexus Whelpling does best when he is the slower pet in the battle. Tail Sweep does extra damage if the whelp goes second, so look for breeds with lower speed and higher attack. Breeds 10 and 20 fit the bill.

Where to find it:

The Nexus Whelpling hangs out at – you guessed it – the Nexus. This is a raid/instance location found in Coldarra, a large island off the northwest coast of Borean Tundra in Northrend. The whelps spawn all over the island in small numbers. They are relatively uncommon to find, but nowhere near as rare as the Minfernal. As this area is a Wrath-era zone, you will want to be level 68 or higher in order to survive the mobs there and make the most of your time.

Pets with similar skill sets:

If you’re using the Nexus Whelpling, chances are it’s as a strong counter to flying pets. His strength in this role is due to his classification as a dragonkin pet with strong magic attacks. No other dragonkin pet has the exact same set of skills as the Nexus Whelpling, but there exist a few that are also suitably equipped to be devastating to flying type pets: the Nether Faerie Dragon, Sprite Darter Hatchling, Lil’ Tarecgosa, and the Netherwhelp (if you’re lucky enough to own one).

Pair it with:

Only two abilities benefit from the weather being Arcane winds. Those are Psychic Blast and Mana Surge. The Arcane Eye and Tiny Blue Carp have both of these attacks, but do not have Arcane Storm. Pairing them with a Nexus Whelpling could unleash some potentially devastating synergy. Try it out!

Pro Tip:

Having trouble with Jeremy Feasel during the Darkmoon Faire? His monkey and tonk’s stun can be bothersome for some teams. If they’re giving you headaches, try swapping in a Nexus Whelping, or any pet with Arcane Storm, which prevents the monkey and tonk from stunning your pets!