Locked and Loaded: Mechanical Hunter pets in Legion
Legion is adding 4 new Hunter pet families, bringing the grand total to a whopping 64 families. The new families are Oxen, Scalehides, Mana Sabers, and Mechanicals. What separates mechanical pets from the rest of the new families is that several of them are challenge tames. In other words, it’s not as simple as walking up to one and pressing the Tame Beast button, although some of them can be tamed this way. Mechanicals are not exotic pets, so all three specs can have their own robot companion.
Gnomes, Goblins, and engineers
The first hurdle in taming a mechanical pet is that you must learn how to do so. Gnomes and Goblins know how to tame (reprogram?) mechanicals innately, but other races will need some help. Engineers can craft the Mecha-Bond Imprint Matrix and use it themselves or trade it to other Hunters. After you use this device, you will be able to tame mechanicals regardless of your character’s race.
Engineers can learn to craft this device via a schematic sold by Xur’ios in Dalaran. This schematic may be tied to a world quest faction, but it’s not clear because this particular vendor doesn’t seem to be fully implemented as of this writing. It also requires materials obtained in the Broken Isles. This means only Gnomes and Goblins will be able to tame mechanicals in the 7.0 prepatch. Many of the pets we’re about to cover will be tameable in the prepatch.
In case you’re wondering, it appears that the racial requirement only applies to the taming process itself. If you were to, for example, race change your Hunter to a Gnome, tame a mechanical pet, then race change back to your original race, your mechanical pet would still be available for use. It’s possible this will change.
List of mechanical pets
Currently, the only way to get this pet is to roll a brand new Gnome Hunter. The mech bunny is the Gnome starting pet and I really hope they make it available from an alternate source because it’s one of my favorites. It has an adorable little attack animation where it jumps up and does a flip, smacking your enemy in the face. Plus its tail is a light bulb! Please, Blizzard, let existing Hunters tame this little critter!
There are currently two different mechano striders available for taming. The first, and easiest, is the Proto-Strider, found inside the Ironwing Cavern in Loch Modan. The Proto-Strider is an unpainted mechano strider. Found in the same area is Optimo, a rare spawn that comes in a nice blue and red color. I don’t know an exact respawn time yet, but it looks to be in the 1-4 hour range. Optimo doesn’t stand still, he runs around the Ironwing Cavern among the other Proto-Striders.
Yes, you can have a little mechanical chicken as a pet if you so desire. The Haywire Battle Chicken is found in Ironwing Cavern along with the previously mention mechano striders. This is an extremely low detail model straight out of 2004, but if that doesn’t bother you… enjoy your battle chicken!
Tekton, the exploding sheep
Tekton is found in Elwynn Forest and is only accessible with a flying mount. You may have come across Tekton in the past. Attacking causes him to explode, which sends Agee Tyler out of his home to yell at you for killing his sheep. You do not want Tekton to reach you during the tame as he will indeed explode mid-tame and knock you back. Just make sure to Freezing Trap or Binding Shot before you begin the tame. Tekton even received a model/texture upgrade for Legion.
Treble and Rush (mechano wolves)
Similar to the the track hunting rares from Mists of Pandaria, Treble and Rush are two mechano wolves that require you to track them via little puddles of oil they leave on the ground. Follow the puddles of oil (spaced every 20-30 yards or so) until the trail stops. Keep a close eye on the ground for the next one to appear. Once it does, throw your Flare down just ahead of it. This can take a few attempts to get right (and if puddles of oil start disappearing it means you are at the wrong end of its path), but once the pet is revealed you need to tame it before it leaves the flared area. A Freezing Trap (Survival) or Binding Shot (Beast Mastery and Marksmanship) will work best.
- Treble is a black mechano wolf is found in Highmountain, taking a path through the Mucksnout Den and Fields of An’she area. I found the easiest way to find him is to wait for his tracks to appear in the Mucksnout Den. This is a cave located near the Hunter class hall, Trueshot Lodge.
- Rush is a red mechano wolf found in Azsuna, patrolling a large loop through the North East part of the zone.
Respawn times are unknown at this point, but if they’re anything like the MoP rares it will only be an hour or two. The challenge here is locating their current position via the puddles of oil, not getting lucky with a spawn timer.
Friender (mechano wolf)
Friender is a blue mechano wolf found deep inside Gnomeregan (the dungeon), inside the Engineering Labs. His level will scale to yours, similar to how it works in the Broken Isles. You’ll find him sleeping when you first arrive, and in order to wake him up and make him tameable, you must solve three puzzles.
There are three button puzzles on the wall and the goal is to light up all the buttons by pressing them in the correct order. It will take some trial and error, and the puzzles start in different states every time you reset the instance. I completed the set of puzzles several times, and twice I believe the 8-button puzzle wasn’t solvable. Maybe I’m just bad at puzzles, but I couldn’t crack it. Resetting the instance gave me a different starting state for the puzzle and then I was able to solve it.
Once you solve all three puzzles, Friender wakes up and runs around the room in a circle. He cannot be crowd controlled and he hits like a truck. The key here is to pop Aspect of the Turtle right before taming so you can survive the hits.
Friender is a reference to a blue robot dog from the Casshan anime series.
Speculation on future mechanical pets
In addition to black (Treble), red (Rush), and blue (Friender) there are also green and orange mechano wolves in the game files. I suspect both colors will become future pets. Maybe the green one can be called Dynomutt? I’m sure there’s an orange robot dog from an obscure TV show, too.
When mechanical pets were first announced, the first one that came to my mind was Iron Juggernaut from Siege of Orgrimmar. So far the boss itself is not tameable, but there are a few interesting items that have been datamined. This is pure speculation on my part, but I think we may be able to craft smaller versions of Iron Juggernaut (in multiple colors) and tame them.
Consider these items:
- Deactivated Blue Juggernaut (there are also grey, teal, and green versions) does not appear to be a battle pet or toy. Why else would you summon a juggernaut, and why would there be multiple colors?
- These juggernauts are crafted with a Pile of Juggernaut Parts, Blackfuse’s Power Core, and Bucket of Blue Paint (also buckets for the other 3 colors).
My theory is these items will be found in various places (sort of like the items gathered for Gara) in order to craft and eventually tame an Iron Juggernaut. I just noticed all of these items as I was writing this column, so I haven’t had a chance to do any serious investigation yet, but I can tell you my first trip will be to Siege of Orgrimmar (the hardest challenge will be finding someone on alpha willing to do Galakras, which still cannot be soloed).
If my Iron Juggernaut theory turns out to be true, that would really round out the different types of taming challenges in the mechanical family. I’m a big fan of what Blizzard has done so far with mechanical pets and I hope we see more unique pet taming challenges as Legion continues.
Are there any other mechanical pets you’d like to see in Legion? How about A-Me 01? Personally, I’d like to tame my very own Blingtron.
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