As you may have heard, one of the big discoveries on the PTR is that our stables are expanding to a whopping 55 slots! We’ve been asking for more slots ever since the expansion was released, and Blizzard has been pretty adamant about not giving us any. I don’t know what changed their mind, and I’m certainly not going to pry.
Keep in mind that this is still early on in the PTR cycle, so I fully expect Blizzard to announce the addition of 50 new spirit beasts before all is said and done. Until that happens, rejoice in knowing that you can have ‘em all.
If you tuned in to the live recording of Hunting Party Podcast #156, you would have heard us opining on the need for more stable slots; and that’s before knowing the full extent of pet changes in patch 5.2.
Kalliope over at Where the Wild Things Are posted a nice teaser video on some of the pets coming our way in the next patch. It’s chock full of cool new dino skins, Direhorns, and at last, three new porcupine spirit beasts. These red, green and blue beauties come with their own unique taming challenges similar to what we saw in patch 4.2.
The real challenge won’t be taming any of these guys, it will be finding the stable slots to hold them. It’s safe to say that whatever rationale existed to limit our stable slots no longer applies in patch 5.2. We need more, and fast.
Where the Wild Things Are: Preview of the Pets of Patch 5.2
I love pets. I make no secret about this. I hate the fact that our current situation for raid is, as GC put it, “wolf or die.” The good news is Cataclysm is bringing some terrific changes regarding pets. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the pet changes coming in Cataclysm.
Oh, but before I dive into this I just wanted remind you that if you really want to keep up with all the pet changes happening in Cataclysm, there is not great resource Petopia. I don’t know if Mania is in beta yet, but if you happen to be in beta, and you happen to love pets she would welcome your help in gathering information.
You can check out her Cataclysm pet forums for more info. on what you can do to help.
Stable Slots – It Goes to Twenty
This is how I think it’s going to work. We’ll have 20 slot stable and the ability to carry around five active pets that can be called from the Call Stabled Pet ability. If we want to make a pet from out stables active we’ll have to visit a stable master to do this. If this is correct that means hunters should be able to have up to 25 pets in Cataclysm. Unfortunately, when you move a pet into the stable its talents will get wiped.
Even if it’s only 20 total pets that should be enough to fill most hunter’s needs. That is unless they added 15 more spirit beasts to the game .
How Will Pets Work
Here’s a recent quote from Ghostcrawler on how pets will function in Cataclysm.
Pets — We haven’t done our design pass on them yet. The design is for them to no longer receive raid buff since they get complete scaling from the master (and we don’t want them to double dip). Their abilities will be divided into 3 categories: basic focus dumps (e.g. Claw), specials (e.g. web), and exotic abilities for the BM exotic pets. Specials never cost focus and basics have short cooldowns but meaningful damage. All pets will do the same dps. We don’t want “wolf or die” in Cataclysm (and before that it was cat). Each pet family will bring a unique raid buff, allowing hunters to be wildcards for when you are lacking something. The ease of swapping pets will facilitate this further.
Basically pets should scale nicely with the hunter, they’ll bring some raid utility in the form of buffs (probably nicer for 10-man raids), and pet dps is getting normalized so it’s possible that we won’t look like huntards for bringing that spirit beast to the raid.
Starter Pets Hunters will get a pet right out of the gate a level one. I haven’t seen an update to this, but last I heard the race/start pet combinations are as follows,
Human – Wolf Dwarf – Bear Night Elf – Wintersaber Draenei – Moth Worgen – Mastiff Orc – Boar Undead – Bat Tauren – Plainstrider Troll – Raptor Blood Elf – Dragon Hawk Goblin – Crab
All of these seem appropriate and they’re not too far off from what I thought they might be (see For Starters Pets).
New Pets – Filling Up the Barn
Petopia’s Cataclysm pet page show Monkey’s, Foxes, Mastiffs as three of the new pets we’ll be able tame, and I’m sure they’ll be others. Monkey’s are part of the primate family (currently called the Gorilla family in Wrath), and Foxes and Mastiffs are part of the wolf family.
Old Pets – Endangered Species
Unless Blizzard tells us they’re building an Ark, there remains the possibility that some of our favorite animals could be on the verge of extinction. So far there is nothing official about specific pets disappearing but there have been some rumors that the Cat Figurines used to spawn the Ghostsabers don’t seem to exist in the beta.
There are also some rumbling that Sian-Rotam and Echeyakee may be missing in action as well. For those that don’t know they are the only white lions found in the game and they are spawned from the following quests.