Pet Breeds: An Overview
If you’ve ever been browsing a pet forum, or been in a pet discussion, the odds are fairly good someone in that discussion will have brought up the topic of pet breeds. But what are pet breeds? And why do we even care?
If you select any pet in the pet journal, there are three numbers given to you: Health, Power, and Speed. Each of these numbers tells you something. How fast your pet goes, how hard it can hit and how many hits it can take.
Each pet has a basic set of stats. They will have these numbers no matter what breed they are. Breed adds additional points on top of this, and can be weighted for one stat, or evenly spread across all the stats. A power-focused stat still has some points in the other stats; however, most of the points will be in their power stat. A balance pet has the points equally distributed across all of the stats, and is okay in everything rather than good at one thing. This is not necessarily a bad thing either.
Each pet gets two stat ‘allotments’ to give its end stats. This is represented by giving the note for both allotments. An H/H, for example, has both of its stat allotments weighted to health, while a P/S has one allotment focusing on power and one on speed. While the second example would give you less speed than a pure speed breed, it has more power, and can give more flexibility for what you want to do.
The easiest way to tell what breed pet you have is to get an add-on capable of telling you what breed your pet is. Often these add-ons also tell you what breeds it is possible for your pet to come in, so you can make informed decisions on what you want for your collection. It is possible to tell without an add-on, but without a strong knowledge of what numbers are involved all you can do is have a best guess.
Of course, not everyone needs, or wants, to worry about breed. Depending on what you do with your pets it can mean everything or nothing. Breed, for basic PvE pet battling, isn’t always such a big deal. The Awfully Big Adventure achievement does have several guides telling you that you need this pet or that pet in this specific breed to beat this really hard trainer here, but even then for each strategy saying that, there will be ten others that don’t have such a specific requirement.
Where breed can really matter is PvP pet battling, where the entire focus is on outwitting an opponent, and making sure you have the best possible advantage. Even then there can often be pets with multiple breeds that are considered best for it.
How much emphasis you want to put on breed is up to you. Sometimes just having one Spring Rabbit, guaranteed to come in a pure speed (S/S) breed, is enough to get you past a tricky fight where speed counts.
It always pays to ask yourself a few questions when deciding what breed you want. Do you want a strong hard hitting pet, or does it need to be fast enough to get the first hit so you can take better advantage of an ability that gives an extra hit? Do you want the pet to have lots of health because of a heal, or does its type ability take best advantage of a certain breed? Typical examples of the last question are Undead and Mechanical pets with their resurrection traits, or Flying with their speed boost trait.
Sometimes, looking at what abilities you have makes all the difference. Dragonkin with Tail Whip, for example, get bonus damage for going last, so having a slower pet able to do larger damage makes sense. You might not get the first hit in, but being able to do greater damage means you get hit less, whereas a rabbit with Flurry gets an extra hit for going first, and certain avoidance abilities can let you dodge an extra attack if you have enough speed to get the move cast first.
If you find yourself interested in finding out the breed of your pets, check out the add-on Battle Pet BreedID. It has the standard letter annotation for breeds, and has a good update record, even if it can take a few weeks to get the information necessary for new pets.
If you decide to download this add-on, go directly to Curse.com*. Internet safety is important, and you want to be sure you are where the site says you are.
*Editor’s note: you can also use the Curse client installer.