Battle pets. When I heard about them on the roundtable, I was quite sceptical about introducing automated AI into a competitive game, but at least I was positive that each of them will have unique behavior and that will make the game more interesting/fun. After I heard they’ll all work the same (even ranged ones), my excitement fell even more. Now that I tested them, I’m just disappointed.
Let’s have a look at their cons/flaws:
ranged pets don’t make any sense whatsoever. Whoever thought that moving towards enemies should be their job was unbelievably wrong. I’m sure that most newbies are scratching their heads when they notice how counterintuitive their AI is - they should obviously do the opposite or at least not move. CP coded Rok to not move, so I’m not sure why they couldn’t code ranged pets to do the same. At this moment Ace and Ion are at the power level of Swamp Entangler (not to insult Swamp Entangler, which at least doesn’t suicide into everything).
the majority of other pets is not really playable. Neither on the ladder (well, you can create meme decks), nor in Gauntlet. They are way to easy to play around - just place a big enough minion to make them suicide into it and lose value. Placing a 3+ attack pet near your minions in Gauntlet is very risky since they can work for your opponent and clear your stuff by suiciding into Gnasher. And even if you want to totally avoid drafting pets, it’s sometimes impossible because you are offered 3 or 2 and another card you’d never pick, e.g. Ion, Sol and Fountain of Youth.
most of pet-related spells and Minions are relying on RNG, a big part of them is terrible and unplayable too. Did we really need so many “put random battle pet(s) into your action bar” cards? There are 5 of them, one of them is neutral. I’m sure that CP could come up with more varying effects, General Zendo is a great example and one of my favorite cards of the set. Then apart from random draws we have random spawns - Nature’s Confluence, which can be great or awful depending on the dice roll and situation you’re in, and Rawr, which is basically worse Nimbus. I don’t understand why nearly all of them had to be randomized.
And now at their pros:
their pixel art and names are decent, I guess
Pax is OP when not silenced (is that a pro?), some other faction pets are more or less playable thanks to their synergistic effects
they are cute
Do you think battle pets were overall a good expansion theme and other themes should be designed similarly?
- I’m indifferent
If not, what would you expect CP to change?