Much Ado About Boars

September 10, 2007 at 12:52 pm (Hunter, Pets, Warcraft, World of Warcraft)

Reader Gnarsh left 2 comments in my FAQ pages yesterday about boars. One example:

Boars are not great for soloing, they are the best pet for soloing. Even spec’d out 100% marksman at level 62, I rarely do enough damage to pull a mob off my boar. A Concussive Shot usually gives the boar enough time to regain control over the mob if it doesn’t die by the time it gets to me. On the rare occasions a mob closes to melee range it doesn’t take more than two or three swings to put it down. As far as ugly, if the mob thinks my pet is funny looking, he’ll only die laughing.

“…the best pet for soloing.” The plan was to publish the comment and then post my own discussing it, but that phrase gives me pause. To publish would give credence to that statement of absolute, even if it only lasted until the reader gets to my rebuff. Which leads me to the question, can it be rebuffed?

He didn’t state that other pets aren’t viable for soloing, just that boars are better. In my opinion, anything with a focus dump that can immediately use any talent generated focus will generate enough threat to solo with effectively. However, I don’t think a case be made that any of them are on par or better than the boar. With charges huge initial threat boost, most hunters are hard pressed to pull agro.

The other factor when soloing is survivability. Of the 7 pets I recommend, boars have more armor and more health than any of them.

Even Dash/Dive isn’t an issue.

Further pushing the recommendation is that the nice models occur early in the game. If you’re going to have both a soloing pet and a raiding pet, it just makes sense that you’d do the soloing pet as you leveled and then tamed a high level raiding pet to minimize grinding up levels.

The only downside is DPS, which doesn’t matter too much when soloing as most damage comes from the hunter, even a BM. Screech is also nice to have, but it’s very situational, and most times I’d just trap if there’s a second mob.

If Bliz gave your favorite pet model a 2nd version with higher armor/hp, but lower DPS, that could hold agro better than your current pet, wouldn’t you take it for soloing? Why wouldn’t you fully recommend that pet for leveling? But that’s the situation with the boar. Can you think of any pet that is superior to the boar for soloing?

For now the comment will be on hold until I can think of a way to tell min/maxers to take a boar without making those that don’t want a boar feel like they’re missing out.

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6 Comments

  1. Guitgoin said,

    I totally agree about boars being the best solo/leveling pet. The lack of the DPS is overwhelmingly compensated for by charge. Stunning your target for one second and the aggro it generates is well worth it. But you forgot to mention the PvP benefits of the boar. I guess not everyone is in a PvP realm, but for me, being able to solo/level also included my survivability if a horde decided to attack me. It’s interesting and almost sad that Blizzard decided to give boars a unique ability like this, when so many other pets deserve, but don’t get one for themselves. Even worse is not having a tameable boar in Outland; and please don’t settle for an Eastern Plaguelands boar… it’s worth the grind to have a decent looking pet IMO =D

  2. Mania’s Arcania: It’s all about the (WoW hunter) pets! » Community Round-Up: Threat said,

    […] has a short summary of why boars are such a strong recommended pet. Like Znodis, this state of affairs makes me a little sad, but for hunters who want the ‘best […]

  3. Someone said,

    Totally agree and have been recomending it myself! 3~4 K initial aggro from charge, throw an intimidation on a 2nd mob and freeze a 3rd one (if they’re elites, normal ones die too soon!), and you can mend pet at will! And charge only has 25 seconds CD, so in longer fights, where the boar is away from you as should be always, given a few talents to boost focus regen he will be ready to charge that other mob that is on you!

    Ever since 8 levels ago when I tried one for the first time (and I did try Owl w/ screech, Gorilla w/ Thunderwhatever) and found no other better for soloing… I’ve left my cat in the stable because I now hate to play with him! Sure, I can do more DPS but what’s the point if I want to keep the mob away I’ll have to start with Intimidation and even so it’s not guaranteed it will stick there for more than half way through his HP!

  4. gorillapaws said,

    I’m level 70 and I use my boar for farming and running quests and other solo ventures. I’ve got a cat for pvp (since the prowl ability is a pretty handy tactical advantage) but I can appreciate how the boar would be nice as well with its charge ability.

  5. Zefram said,

    How about the fact that Gore is missing ranks, and (for Horde hunters), ranks 3 and 4 are only available in Alliance-centric zones. Gore 3 is only available from Loch Modan, Redridge and Azuremyst, and Bellygrub in Redridge is the only mob that has Gore 4. Since 5 & 6 are missing from the game, that’s the last one before Gore 7 from the blasted lands at level 48.

    On the same note, charge is also missing rank 4, and rank 3 is only available from Bellygrub or the elite Agam’ars in RFK. Charge 5 is similarly at level 48.

    I have a Rotting Agam’ar stabled that I got from RFK at 28, when I went to get a Strigid Owl from Teldrassil. I’ve found that Screech is alot less situational than you imply — second mobs are very common when grinding, and it’s nice to simply not worry about the hassle of trapping when you know your pet can keep aggro on 3 mobs at once.

  6. Xorne said,

    I’m with Zefram.

    Screech is a hugely powerful solo/threat ability for flying pets. It’s not just a Focus Dump–it’s an AOE Focus Dump, generating non-damaging threat.

    I think Boars are great, but as far as what pet is going to serve you best in solo-PVE? Owl all the way, for me.

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