50 Battles: Moonlight

My motivation for this segment of 50 battles was to put the somewhat underused weather effect of Moonlight to the test. I’ve made a few Moonlight teams here and there, but never played any of them long term. Hopefully a good team will come out of my testing.

What does moonlight do? It increases healing by 25% and Magic abilities receive a 10% damage increase.

moon 5Who can apply Moonlight? Celestial Dragon, Moonkin Hatchling, Nether Fairie Dragon, Sprite Darter Hatchling, and Emerald Whelpling. The only two of those pets I’m really interested in are the Nether Fairie Dragon and the Emerald Whelpling so I’ll use those.

What moves benefit from Moonlight? Any healing or Magic abilities, and specifically the move Creeping Fungus deals additional damage in Moonlight. That gives me a lot of choices to work with.

Team 1
H/P Infected Squirrel (Creeping Fungus, Rabid Strike, Consume)
S/S Sporeling Sprout (Jab, Leech Seed, Crouch)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
This is probably the most common Moonlight team I’ve encountered. Sometimes it does well. I’ll give it a try and see what I can do with it.

Win: Kun-Lai Runt, Garden Moth, Cinder Kitten
The Squirrel and Fairie Dragon took care of all of them.

Win: Red Panda, Dancing Water Skimmer, Emerald Turle
I almost lost this one! All my opponents pets had heals, so the Moonlight helped them. I missed some key Jabs, the Panda’s Cute Face caused some dodges. Long game (44 rounds) came down to the final Jab, which luckily hit.

Loss: Magical Crawdad, Sinister Squashling, Unborn Valk’yr
I made a huge mistake forgetting about a DoT that killed my Squirrel in the backline. It was also a bad match up for me. It’s suspicious how this same Crawdad comes out after I run a few Moonlight teams. I can’t complain, I’m often guilty of sniping myself.

Loss: Direhorn Runt, Nordrassil Wisp, Kun-Lai Runt
An unfortunate loss, I was keeping my Squirrel in the back with only a little more than 200 hp, waiting for my Abomination to die, knowing he would try to kill it with his Primal Cry. Primal Cry wouldn’t bring my Squirrel down to 0 unless it crit… which it did, essentially costing me my chance at winning.

Win: Terrible Turnip, Dragonbone Hatchling, Lesser Voidcaller
Not a very good team that I faced. They used Weakening Blow, perhaps it was an accidental queue while out hunting for pets.

Record: 3-2
Assessment: I was hoping to do better with this team. The teams I beat weren’t made up of good pets for PvP. The two opponents with top tier pets beat me.


Team 2
H/P Infected Squirrel (Creeping Fungus, Stampede, Consume)
H/S Fungal Abomination (Absorb, Leech Seed, Stun Seed)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
The Abomination doesn’t hit hard, hopefully the heals under Moonlight will make up for that.

Win: Darkmoon Zeppelin, Darkmoon Tonk, Darkmoon Tonk
I didn’t think I had a chance here but Stampede really came to the rescue. Not only did it take down the Decoy in one turn rather than two, it applied Shattered Defenses to help take the Tonks down fast. The Fungal Abomination’s heals under Moonlight helped him outlast the last Tonk.

Loss: Magical Crawdad, Sinister Squashling, Unborn Valk’yr
I really don’t like losing to Crawdads, they are one of my three most hated opponents in the game. But I had to hold back on my Moonlight since the last thing I wanted to do was buff the Crawdad heals. The last game the Abomination was the hero, this time I let him go head to head with the Crawdad, without Moonlight versus an Aquatic it was a total fail.

Win: Dark Phoenix, Darkmoon Zeppelin, Crow
Epic battle of swaps, Dodges, Blocks, Rebirths (yeah, I let it happen) that ended with me Moonfiring the Crow with my Dragonkin bonus for 816 damage while I had only 9 hp remaining.

Win: Anodized Robo Cub, Garden Moth, Death Talon Whelpguard
My Dragon started out for the Moonlight, but after that my other two pets handled the whole other team.

Win: Deepholm Cockroach, Malayan Quillrat, Prarie Mouse
After casting Apocalypse the Roach died on the backline from Creeping Fungus. There goes that plan. You don’t see the other two pets often, there’s a reason for that.

Record: 4-1
Assessment: Good synergy with Moonlight. The Abomination’s Absorb hits like a wet noodle, but can heal a decent amount.


Team 3
H/P Infected Squirrel Creeping Fungus, Stampede, Consume)
H/H Lost of Lordaeron (Absorb, Siphon life, Bone Prison)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Slicing Winds, Evanescence, Moonfire)
I want to try the ghost under the effects of Moonlight. Two undead again, I’ll cross my fingers and hope for no Critters or Aquatics.

Loss: Darkmoon Tonk, Amber Moth, Arcane Eye
Sleeped by the Moth and Stunned by the Tonk. The Lost didn’t perform very well, the ghost and the Eye killed each other and the Eye isn’t that formidable of an opponent.

Win: Sandy Petrel, Kun-Lai Runt, Shimmering Wyrmling
A win, but the Lost was still pretty weak. Moonlight + Fungus + Stampede is what did the damage.

Win: Mr. Bigglesworth, Water Waveling, Lil’ KT
My Fairie Dragon was able to avoid some of the nukes with Dodge. They made a major mistake swapping out Lil’ KT with Fungus and Moonlight, it died in the back line. The ghost just came in to finish off Bigglesworth.

Win: Lil’ Deathwing, Mini Diablo, Dragonbone Hatchling
Both Deathwing and Diablo had Darkness, the Lost still managed to stay alive pretty well. Shattered Defenses and Creeping Fungus again proved to be lethal, for Deathwing in this instance.

Win: Electrified Razortooth, Fel Flame, Jungle Grubmoon 4
The Lost stayed alive a lot longer than I thought, it did well against both the Razortooth and the Fel Flame. The Grub was hitting my Squirrel for around 700, but the Undead racial plus Fungus/Shattered Defenses allowed them to cancel each other out. The Dragon finished off what remained of the Flame and Razortooth. Dragonkin bonus is awesome, it really doesn’t need a buff imo.

Record: 4-1
Assessment: Why synergy can do so much for mediocre pets. I’ve never really given the Lost of Lordaeron much thought or respect, but here it did well, thanks to Moonlight buffing its heals.


Team 4
H/H Tiny Sporebat (Shadow Slash, Creeping Fungus, Confusing Sting)
H/H Emerald Turtle (Emerald Bite, Shell Shield, Head Butt)
H/S Emerald Whelpling (Breath, Moonfire, Tranquility)
Let’s give the Emerald Whelpling a shot.

Win: Direhorn Runt, Arctic Hare, Living Sandling
I put up Tranquility and Moonfire, then brought in the Turtle. It took out the Living Sandling and the Hare thanks to two out of three Head Butts stunning. Lucky, I know, but seeing a Direhorn run away from an Emerald Turtle made my day.

Loss: Direhorn Runt, Crow, Living Sandling
I was laughing too hard to play well. Same person as above, but they brought a Crow to snipe the Turtle. Seriously? You have to snipe an Emerald Turtle? I played bad but it was worth the laughs.

Win: Scalded Basilisk Hatchling, Crystal Spider, Pandaren Earth Spirit
My opponent put my favorite pet to shame. I guess it’s not his fault, birds give the Basilisk trouble.

Win: Pandaren Water Spirit, Wild Jade Hatchling, Emerald Whelpling
My Emerald Whelpling beat the Wild Jade Hatchling, then my Sporebat beat the Water Spirit. In the end it was my Turtle vs. the opposing Emerald Whelpling, I barely came out on top.

Win: Scourged Whelpling, Ghostly Skull, Blighthawkmoon 6
One of those feared triple Undead teams you hear so much about. Three Undead racials to deal with. I have an Aquatic, can the Turtle pull it off again? I can’t believe it, the Turtle was indeed the star again. Hit a few stuns with Head Butt, all that shielded hp kept it in the game for a long time, especially augmented with Tranquility. Surprising.

Record: 4-1
Assessment: Surprisingly 4-1, I was just giving these pets some time because I thought they might have a fighting chance with some Moonlight synergy. I would still be surprised if this team kept this win rate over a larger sampling of games.


Team 5
S/S Sporeling Sprout (Jab, Creeping Fungus, Crouch)
H/H Emerald Turtle (Emerald Bite, Healing Wave, Head Butt)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
I’m gonna try taking Healing Wave on the Turtle instead of Shell Shield.

Loss: Anubisath Idol, Scourged Whelpling, Kun-Lai Runt
I was losing anyways, but five, yes five, Sandstorm misses didn’t help me make a comeback.

Loss: Direhorn Runt, Direhorn Runt, Magic Broom
Opponent didn’t even have to use his Broom. Two direhorns were enough to take me out.

Loss: Clockwork Gnome, Onyxian Whelpling, Chrominius
Fun battle, I had trouble with his Gnome and so many Magic attacks. The Onyxian Whelling’s heal was helped by the Moonlight. Came down to my Turtle having around 100 hp and the Whelpling having around 500 and a Dragonkin bonus. I made a desperate attempt to stun with my Head Butt but missed and the Turtle died.

Win: Terrible Turnip, Scourged Whelpling, Malayan Quillrat
The Fairie Dragon owned the Turnip, killing it while taking only around 300 damage. It was enough for my opponent to run. Crappy way to get the first win for this team, but it still is a “W”.

Loss: Tranquil Mechanical Yeti, Clockwork Gnome, Pet Bombling
Lightning, Minefields, Explosions. Sound mechanical. I didn’t do a good enough job of keeping away the Lightning.

Record: 1-4
Assessment: I thought the Turtle could benefit twice from Moonlight, both with the healing buff and Magic damage buff, but it never was enough to make the Turtle more than a liability. The Turtle in the team above did much better with Shell Shield.


Team 6
H/P Infected Squirrel (Creeping Fungus, Stampede, Consume)
H/H Emerald Turtle (Emerald Bite, Shell Shield, Head Butt)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
A different combination of some Moonlight pets.

Win: Water Waveling, Celestial Dragon, Netherspace Abyssal
The P/P Abyssal hits so damn hard. The Squirrel took the Celestial Dragon down fast with the Fungus combo.

Win: Elementium Geode, Unborn Valk’yr, Sunreaver Micro-Sentry
After using a Geode more myself, I’m afraid of what it can do. At the end I managed to Dodge the Stone Rush and not get smacked. The way things played out I didn’t get to use the Fungus along with Moonlight. Not sure that Stampede + Fungus is all that powerful without Moonlight. I don’t know if it needs a nerf in 5.4 like it’s getting.

Loss: Crow, Lil’ Ragnaros, Nordrassil Wisp
Played out just like I wanted, I needed one hit on the Crow to bring it below its Flying bonus, then after the Turtle died I’d come in and Evanescence then Moonfire the slow bird for the win. Except the Crow crit my Turtle for 1200+ damage, foiling my plan. With Darkness up there was a big chance I’d miss my Emerald Bite anyways. This was the third loss in a row (two from other teams) that rng was a big factor in. Time to run to the forums and talk about how much this game sucks! Just kidding, of course. I think I’ll queue again.

Loss: Anubisath Idol, Tranquil Mechanical Yeti, Magical Crawdad
This wasn’t a good match up for me in the first place, but then Idol had eaten his Lucky Charms. In a Sandstorm the Idol did not miss once. It also crit. It almost solo’d my entire team. I finally killed it with my dragon, but I was way too far behind to come back. My half-health dragon versus the full-health Yeti and Crawdad was too much.

Win: Stunted Direhorn, Coilfang Stalker, Clockwork Gnomemoon 7
My first time fighting a Coilfang Stalker, I can now say I beat this pet 100% of the time I face it. My opponent lost a turn by starting with the Stalker then immediately switching to the Direhorn. That extra turn allowed my Fungus + Stampede to take the Direhorn down and survive with my Squirrel. The Turtle shielded versus the Turrets, I kept waiting for a Repair to come but it never did. The still living Squirrel and the Fairie cleaned up the Stalker easily.

Record: 3-2
Assessment: Again the Turtle didn’t do too bad. Shields are useful. Emerald Bite synergizes a little bit with Moonfire, but not too much.


Team 7
H/S Emerald Boa (Bite, Hiss, Burrow)
H/H Emerald Shale Hatchling (Leech Life, Sticky Web, Stoneskin)
H/S Emerald Whelpling (Breath, Moonfire, Tranquility)
Might as well throw a themed team in here. They’re all green in case you couldn’t guess.

Loss: Deathy, Clockwork Gnome, Spirit of Competition
Started of with my Shale Hatchling versus the Gnome. I thought I could Web/Leech him faster than he could repair, but when he died 25 rounds later I only had around 400 hp left. Ended up losing after 43 rounds. I know it’s a themed team, but wow, I lost to a Murloc pet, which is rare. Might be a tough five games.

Loss: Direhorn Runt, Direhorn Runt, Magical Broom
A themed team versus an overpowered team! If I can pull this of it would be… well, never mind, I couldn’t. As if to flaunt the silliness of the Direhorns he let me kill his broom with my strong Dragonkin attacks. In the end my Leech Life was completely blocked by Trihorn Shield. Seems legit.

Loss: Lil’ Deathwing, Frosty, Crow
Watching Deathwing miss three times in row thanks to his own Darkness was worth the price of admission. Wasn’t enough to help me get the win.

Loss: Direhorn Runt, Pygmy Direhorn, Stunted Direhorn
I killed one and got the other down to 4 hp. Sigh.

Loss: Nether Fairie Dragon, Infected Squirrel, Mechanical Pandaren Dragonling
I kept the Squirrel rooted with the Shale Hatchling to see who could out heal the other one. Squirrel won by a long shot.

Record: 0-5
Assessment: It was a themed emerald green team, but I still hoped to pull at least one or two wins out. Wasn’t that fun to play, not a lot of synergy or deep strategy. I need to decide if I want to be stubborn and keep playing until I finally win or scrap it.


Team 8
H/H Scourged Whelpling (Tail Sweep, Death and Decay, Plagued Blood)
H/H Magical Crawdad (Snap, Renewing Mists, Wish)
H/S Emerald Whelpling (Breath, Moonfire, Tranquility)
I feel obligated to make a Crawdad team since a lot of people say it’s the best healer out there.

Win: Magical Crawdad, Toad, Purple Puffer
70 round heal fest. Why I generally don’t like the Crawdad.

Win: Tranquil Mechanical Yeti, Creepy Crate, Nordrassil Wisp
My opponent couldn’t out-damage the heals or out-weather the Moonlight with Lightning.

Win: Crawling Claw, Scourged Whelpling, Direhorn Runtmoon1
There was always Darkness up when it was a good time for Wish, but somehow I ended up winning without even casting Wish. His Direhorn never managed to interrupt me.

Loss: Stunted Direhorn, Fiendish Imp, Giant Bone Spider
The Crawdad did great against the Direhorn, unfortunately I held back on Moonfire because of the Imp’s healing. Maybe I should have went for it.

Win: Cenarion Hatchling, Thundertail Flapper, Sunreaver Micro-Sentry
I lost the weather war, the Sentry killed my green dragon and kept lightning up. Death and Decay was helped by Lightning but the Scourged Whelpling didn’t do all that well. In the end the half-health Cenarion Hatchling and Flapper couldn’t outdamage Wish and Renewing Mists.

Record: 4-1
Assessment: Yuck, I just played five games with the Crawdad. It’s one of my top three enemies for a reason, it’s often stupid hard to take down.


Team 9
H/P Infected Squirrel (Creeping Fungus, Stampede, Consume)
S/S Fiendish Imp (Burn, Immolation, Nether Gate)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
Take a top pet like the Imp and give it some buddies. Infected Squirrel to enhance the DoT, Fairie Dragon to help the healing.

Win: Alpine Foxling, Gregarious Grell, Scourged Whelpling
Creeping Fungus + Stampede + backline Immolation took the Scourged Whelpling down quick.

Win: Death Talon Whelpguard, Pandaren Earth Spirit, Harbringer of Flame
Nothing too interesting, easy win.

Win: Anodized Robo Cub, Stunted Direhorn, Rabbit
I start off with Immolation, the bear Supercharges. I don’t want to get hit with a Supercharged anything so I Gate him, but miss. His Supercharged Demolish brings my Imp down to 4 hp lol. My Fairie beats the Rabbit (it’s only 292 speed), the Squirrel beats the Direhorn, but dies quickly to the Robo Cub but gets off a Stampede on the Undead turn, while the Robo Cub CASTS REPAIR! Really now? My Imp comes in at 46 hp, strong Burns the Robo Cub for about 1k a shot. Hits 3 times in a row to grab the win. I know demolish is a 50% accuracy move, but that was poorly played by my opponent, the Cub should have went for the kill.

Win: Gilnean Raven, Frosty, Nexus Whelpling
Immolation + Creeping Fungus + Stampede took down Frosty FAST! I missed a Nether Gate under Darkness to start the battle, again. But then I hit one to end the battle.

Win: Scourged Whelpling, Crawling Claw, Corefire Impmoon2
My opponent made some interesting choices on when to uses the Claw’s forced swap, I don’t know if it was meant to throw me off guard, or if it was just… off. Again the debuff plus two DoTs was harsh. Done with these guys for now.

Record: 5-0
Assessment: It’s really no surprise, the Fiendish Imp is one of the top pets right now, give it a little bit of synergy and it should win a lot. Synergy provided by Moonlight and Stampede.


Team 10
H/P Infected Squirrel (Creeping Fungus, Stampede, Consume)
S/S Molten Hatchling (Leech Life, Cauterize, Brittle Webbing)
S/S Nether Fairie Dragon (Arcane Blast, Evanescence, Moonfire)
I’ve been wanting to use my Molten Hatchling more, here’s my chance.

Loss: Gilnean Raven, Direhorn Runt, Frog
His Frog got a few Polymorphs. I wanted to wait to use my Molten Hatchling until the Raven was dead, but my opponent held back, saving his raven for my heals. It worked.

Win: Lil’ Ragnaros, Anubisath Idol, Creepy Crate
Ate one trap with the Squirrel, the other trap went off while my Evanescence was up, that helps.

Win: Luyu Moth, Oily Slimeling, Nether Ray Fry
Well played by my opponent, a lot of swapping, a lot of good tactics. I was barely the victor.

Win: Pygmy Direhorn, Living Sandling, Kun-Lai Runt
Swapping between my Dragon, Squirrel, and Hatchling allowed me to kill the Runt with two pets at full health and only minimal damage to my Squirrel. My opponent put in the Direhorn and while I was figuring out what to do next they ran away. Doorbell? Frightened? Depends change? Another win.

Loss: Clockwork Gnome, Son Of Animus, Sunreaver Microsentry
Three mechs versus my Beast spider. I tried to use his lightning against him with Creeping Fungus and Stampede, but it didn’t work as well as I thought. The Squirrel and Animus killed each other, I was left with the two fragile pets versus a soft counter and hard counter. I should have tried to change the weather sooner.

Record: 3-2
Assessment: I had fun with this team, I think I’ll keep it around. A major weakness versus mechs, as I saw in the last game. Hey, sometimes you get countered. I could exchange the Squirrel for a Sporeling Sprout with Leech Seed, at least that’s a little anti-mech, but I would lose my Creeping Fungus.


Overall Record: 31-19
Overall Assessment: While not a terribly impressive record, I think that there are definitely some good Moonlight pets and teams out there. Top tier? Probably not. Competitive enough to get some wins? Yes. Was it fun? Of course that’s up to the individual’s style, but I can say I enjoyed using some of these teams and will be using them again.

Published July 2013, Patch 5.3

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