Meet Stinker!

StinkerYou probably already sussed from my first post talking about the new Achievements feature Blizzard added prior to the launch of the last expansion ‘Wrath Of The Lich King’, that I had my eye on the vanity pet collection achievements. Giving them their own tab and taking them out of your backpacks and bank slots, thereby ridding you of the space requirement certainly allowed even the most ardent pack-rat to enjoy the thrill of being followed around everywhere in game by a variety of pets.

So ever since that day, I’ve kept an eye out for new vanity pets. An auction purchase here, a quick quest or two there and a few trips to previously overlooked vendors, slowly adding to my collection until Sunday night when I hit the magic number – 50 and gained the achievement ‘Shop Smart, Shop Pet…Smart‘. Moments later, a letter from Breanni, the NPC pet-store owner in Dalaran, arrived commending me on my pet care and asking me to look after… Stinker, the vanity pet skunk.

So here I am with my collection of 51 vanity pets and of course I felt the urge to brag share the news of my accomplishment. It’s not such a tough feat all told – especially considering there are apparently over a hundred pets in game. But I’m still pleased. In fact, I thought I’d share with you my favourite ten pets… listed after the ‘jump’.

Here are my top-ten vanity pets from the ones I’ve collected, in reverse order (natch), with a few pointers on how to obtain them if you’re interested…

10. White Kitten

White KittenThere are quite a few different cat pets in the game, most of them available (Alliance only), from the vendor Donni Anthania (Crazy Cat Lady) in Elwynn Forest. Any Horde with a hankering for cat will either have to scour the neutral Auction Houses or make do with the Siamese Cat sold by Dealer Rashaad in Netherstorm or (for the more happy-go-lucky/tight-fisted amongst you) dropped by Cookie in the Deadmines instance.

All of which still won’t get you a White Kitten. Again, Alliance only, this pet comes from a wandering vendor in Stormwind City called Lil Timmy. This roaming NPC is fairly special in that he only spawns once every three hours, does a lap of the area around Cathedral Square and the Trade District, and he only carries one cat at a time. You might be lucky enough to encounter Timmy but then find someone else has ‘picked him clean’. Don’t worry, chances are the person who got there before you has just run off to the Auction House to gouge you silly on the cost. The 60 silver kitten has been seen going for even as much as 1000+ gold.

Me, I was running past Cathedral Square one day and thought “I wonder if…”. I didn’t get to finish that thought though as I ran straight into Timmy rounding the corner and snapped up the kitten he was hawking.

9. Pengu

PenguIf you’re busy raising Kalu’ak reputation for that snazzy new fishing rod, once you reach Exalted, don’t forget to also grab the Nurtured Penguin Egg so that you can befriend this cute fella. Okay, so the bright red eyes do tend to make him look just a touch… well… ‘evil’, but that’s just part of his charm.

This pet is only available with the WotLK expansion as it comes as a reputation reward that you can purchase once you’ve earned Exhalted status with the Kalu’ak. So do the quests and then hunker down for a few days worth of dailies. Being a rep reward, you can get it from either of the Kalu’ak quartermasters – Sairuk at Moa’ki Harbor in the Dragonblight or Tanaika at Kamagua village in the Howling Fjord.

I didn’t even realise there was a pet until I was just browsing through the quartermaster’s stock after buying my… uh… snazzy new fishing rod.

8. Cockroach

CockroachIf you’re looking for a pet that’s just a little different from the usual tabby, dragonhawk or snake, you can’t really go wrong with a disgusting insect.

As with the Siamese Cat, this one can be bought from our friendly, neighbourhood swirling mass of bandages and magic, the Netherstorm vendor of exotic creatures, Dealer Rashaad. But, if you haven’t reached levels 58+ or purchased The Burning Crusade expansion (and you happen to be Horde), worry not because Jeremiah Payson, lurking in Undercity will happily sell you one.

7. Baby Blizzard Bear

Baby Blizzard BearI’m afraid that if you haven’t already got this one, you’re pretty much out of luck as it’s not available any more. You see, this cute little bundle was given out free to all players who logged on during Blizzard’s 4th anniversary of WoW.

Logging in during the anniversary, you’d find this guy waiting in your mailbox. I’m guessing he didn’t enjoy it too much either. look at that scowl! Yeah, you know he’s going to rip your throat when he grows up, you mark my words.

6. Smolderweb Hatchling

Smolderweb HatchlingThis creepy-crawly is one of the two vanity pets available from questing in the lower Blackrock Spire instance (the other one being the great little Worg Pup).

The quest (‘En-Ay-Es-Tee-Why‘) starts with a little goblin called Kibler in the Burning Steppes. He wants you to collect 15 spider eggs from the instance and for that, he’ll give you a Smolderweb Hatchling. The other quest (‘Kibler’s Exotic Pets‘) for the Worg Pup also starts with him so be sure to pick them both up at the same time.

5. Sprite Darter Hatchling

Sprite Darter HatchlingI’m afraid this one is strictly Alliance only, as it’s a bind-on-pickup reward from a quest.

(Update: Since patch 3.1, Horde players are now able to get this pet by slaughtering waves of Sprite Darters and getting a Sprite Darter Egg as a fairly low chance random drop).

It’s also a bit of a run around and comes at the end of a series of quests starting with ‘Freedom for All Creatures‘ from Kindal Moonweaver in Feralas. After you do her bidding, you end up going to Darnassus. Instead of wandering off on your merry way, make a point to return to Kindal in Feralas for the Darter quest proper. Then it’s off to the Thousand Needles and finally, the Hinterlands.

4. Tranquil Mechanical Yeti

Tranquil Mechanical YetiOur only kit-form pet for this list, the Tranquil Mechanical Yeti is a pet crafted by the engineering profession from a schematic taught by Umi Rumplesnicker in Winterspring, but only once the engineer in question has completed Umi’s ‘Are We There, Yeti?‘ questline.

So if you’re an engineer, at least level 55, have at least 250 engineering skill and have completed the quests, Umi will offer to teach you how to build these mini-menaces. After that,  it’s a mere Cured Rugged Hide, 4 x Thorium Widget, 2 x Globe of Water, 2 x Truesilver Transformer and a Gold Power Core, and away you go.

3. Speedy

SpeedyAs with quite a few of the vanity pets available, this one comes from a seasonal event – specifically Children’s Week.

Running a week (duh!) from the beginning of May, you get the opportunity to drag a poor orphan all over Azeroth, seeing the sights, meeting important people and stuffing them full of ice-cream.

Once your orphan is contented, you can finally get rid of the brat and claim your sweet reward, either Speedy here, Mr. Wiggles the piglet or Whiskers the rat. You can get all three but only one a year so it’s a bit of a long-term plan.

2. Winter’s Little Helper

Winter’s Little HelperHow barmy is it to be a tiny Gnome and then be followed around by even tinier Gnome… in a revealing Winter Veil outfit? Almost as mad as wearing a snowman disguise while stood next to your Tiny Snowman.

As part of the Feast of Winter Veil celebration, Greatfather Winter leaves a ‘Gaily Wrapped Present‘ under the tree for all the good little (level 20+) boys and girls. Within, you’ll either find the forementioned mini snowman, Winter’s Little Helper (Ms Gnome), Father Winter’s Helper (Mr Gnome) or a tiny Winter Reindeer.

All these pets require a Snowball as a reagent to summon them so keep that in mind.

1. Egbert

EgbertHow could it be any other? Egbert is surely the coolest pet in the game!

Much like Speedy, mentioned at number 3, Egbert is a reward from a Children’s Week questline, though instead of kidnapping an orphan in Azeroth, this one you take from Shattrath City.

It’s the Burning Crusade version of the original quest and likewise, it has three top pets on offer. Pick from either Egbert the hawkstrider hatchling, Peanut the baby elekk or Sleepy Willy, the… uh… well, um… thing.

It’d be great to see another Children’s Week quest pop up in Wrath Of The Lich King with another three new pets but I have to say, I don’t recall seeing another orphanage anywhere in Northrend so I’m not too hopeful.

Well, that’s it for my top ten run down. Whoooo! That’s a fair old article. So glad I decided against detailing all 50! Anyhoo, if you are at all serious about collecting pets in the game, instead of just cribbing off of my second-rate whitterings, you should definitely visit Remember I mentioned my skunk, Stinker, was sent by an NPC called Breanni? Well, that’s who runs the site – Blizzard named the NPC after the owner’s WoW character. You don’t get that for running a half-baked website so you know it’s got the goods.

Also, be sure to reference and so that you’re up to speed when you go hunting for those hard-to-find pets. Me, I’ll see you at 100!