Blizzcon 2011 has kicked off in Anaheim, California and while the big news this morning was focused on Diablo III, there were no shortage of new announcements for those who are hopelessly addicted to World of Warcraft. A new pet battle system was announced, where you can have your WoW pet(s) fight another player's WoW pet(s). At the World of Warcraft preview panel, Corey Stockton, the lead content designer, shared the details on this new system - amidst plenty of chuckling coming from the audience.
The pet battle system will let players collect, level, and battle with companion pets. Instead of having these guys faithfully following you around Azeroth with no real purpose, now they can be customized, renamed and forced to fight.
We're told at this point that it will work with almost every pet that exists now and that there will be plenty of new furry, or not-so-furry creatures to collect and pet battles will be accessible to everyone.
Wild pets can also be found in the...wild, and be tamed by engaging them in battle with your current pet. You'll have to really go into National Geographic mode if you intend to find the rare ones. There will be pets that are only seen during a particular season, weather and time of day.
As you add more pets to your collection, you can manage them in a new pet journal that will display its stats. Most pets can be traded and your companions will now be available account wide.
Stockton mentioned that he'd like to keep the battle system simple, so you'll be choosing up to three abilities for each pet (out of a total of six), and it's turn-based. You can pick a team of three to go fight for you, and like the dungeon finder, you'll be able to queue up and the system will search for another trio within your range to duke it out.
Some of the customization options include being able to give your pet a snazzy new name, give it an item (to boost stats) and you can also seek out masters to fight to gain special master abilities.
While some (if not all) of these features may seem awfully similar to other pet-oriented battle games out there, we're curious to see the kind of match ups we'll get when we pit a baby panda against a mini Thor.
Oct 21, 2011