June 18, 2015

Seeking A Third
H/P Graves (Skull Toss, Consume Corpse, Grave Destruction)
H/H Ghastly Kid (Hoof, Ethereal, Haunt)

As I mentioned yesterday, I’m finding it easier to win with Graves by using Consume Corpse and Haunt rather than BONESTORM. Since the Ghastly Kid is so much better than the Unborn Val’kyr my choice of Haunt pet was easy. Really the hardest choice is Ethereal or Consume Magic on the goat. I’ve been running Ethereal without paying much attention to the alternative; I’m going to keep my eye out for situations where Consume Magic would have been better.

In case you’re unaware, the main synergy between these two pets is due to Haunt and Consume Corpse. While using Haunt the kid is considered to be “dead” and thus available to be used by Consume Corpse. The reason that Haunt is so good with Consume Corpse is because the kid can “die” and be consumed over and over, whereas other pets that stay dead can only be consumed once. What I’ve been doing so far is starting with Haunt, then bringing in Graves for Grave Destruction, taking some damage, then using Consume Corpse for the heal before the kid comes back to life.  So far the largest heal I’ve seen is 1064 in moonlight.

The choice of a third is dependent upon what I want to counter. MPDs were are still the most common pet on my meta during the times I’ve kept records, but these past few days I’ve seen less of them. Still, knocking out decoys should be a priority.

With two undead a critter counter might be in order, but other than my own rabbits, critters neither do well nor appear often on my meta.

Aquatics are more of an issue. My best team so far (Rick Frostly) using this combo has only lost once, and that was to a frog. Even in that case, the loss was due to an untimely Frog kiss proc.

Due to all of the AoE damage in the current meta back line healing would be a welcome addition to this combo.

Even though I have a critter attack on the Ghastly Kid, more anti-undead capabilities might make me stronger.

In case you’re wondering where I get my data from I’ve been continuing my spreadsheet. I plan on documenting a thousand battles, so I’m pacing myself by documenting 250 or 125 at a time, then taking a break. I just got to 375 so I’m taking a break at the moment. Here’s the link:

Graves Meta 6/2-6/10, 6/14-6/18

Less chat, more splat, let’s get to it.

Pet 1: P/P Frostwolf Ghostpup (Scratch, Haunting Song, Ghostly Bite)
The pup provides two benefits: back line healing and critter damage. Having three undead pets has only been an issue once. I’ve faced a few foxes and have been fine eating the damage then healing.

Battle 1: Rick Frostly
vs. Spawn Of G’Nathus, Graves, Teroclaw Hatchling
061815AEveryone’s complaining about Graves but I personally hate the Teroclaw Hatchling more than the undead AoE master. I was quite content to see it go down. In this battle my plan worked flawlessly. Consume Corpse healed Graves twice and the puppy got off a heal. Grave Destruction wasn’t great because of the aquatic on the back line; actually the single-target burst against the heal bird at the end of the battle helped take it out before it could get another Dodge off.

Pet 2: P/S Alterac Brew Pup (Bite, The Good Stuff, Avalanche)
The alcoholic dog does some back line healing and some even split AoE damage. In general it dies quick because I usually swap it in, use Avalanche and The Good Stuff, then often only get off one Bite before dying.

Battle 2: Rick Stuffley
vs. Spawn Of G’Nathus, Graves, Teroclaw Hatchling
061815BSame opponent, this time they tried to do a few things differently, like not attacking my kid on the second round of the Teroclaw Hatchling’s avoid since they knew I would use Ethereal. I guess in this case Consume Magic would have been better since I didn’t need to avoid an incoming attack. When the bird attacked on the second avoidance round like the last battle Ethereal was better. I was really annoyed that the the Spawn Of G’Nathus hit two crits in a row, but I won the most important rng moment: I killed the aqauatic when my ABP won the 289 speed coin toss. It wasn’t a close battle at all, but if I had lost the toss it may have been. I won comfortably.

Taking a break, be back later…

Pet 3: H/P Mechanical Axebeak (Peck, Haywire, Decoy)
The misnamed flyer provides coverage for undead pets due to it having a strong attack against aquatics. I like H/P flyers, even though the P/P might be mathematically better.

Battle 3: Rick Axely
vs. Swamp Croaker, Gilnean Raven, Fossilized Hatchling
061815EThere was a tense moment to start the battle when Haunt was cast with darkness up. A miss would have thrown off my strategy. Haunt landed, then the raven went to the back line to let the Haunt ticks take it down slowly. After a Grave Destruction it was left without its flying racial, so when it swapped in later the faster axebeak killed it off easily. The frog wasn’t as problematic as it could have been thanks to my flyer. With all of the complaints about undead you would expect to see more frogs. The general suck factor of frogs must really outweigh the ability to counter undead.

Pet 4: P/S Biletoad (Tongue Lash, Cleansing Rain, Frog Kiss)
Speaking of frogs, why not give one a shot. I chose this breed because its faster than the 260 speed undead and has a decent health pool.

Battle 4A: Rick Wartley
vs. Brilliant Kaliri, Unborn Val’kyr, Weebomination
061815CNooooo! I was going to rage about how much frogs suck, but instead I should rage about my inability to keep track of Haunt. I let it expire before I used my Consume Corpse, damn. I still shouldn’t have lost, but then I made another error in thinking that frog was faster than the kaliri. Okay, let me get this straight, 273=273, not 273>273. Okay, got it. I think. The worst thing about this was losing to the overly used, overly losing Unborn Val’kyr. Maybe the issue isn’t the general suck factor of frogs, but rather the general suck factor of me using frogs :).

Battle 4B: Rick Wartley
vs. Anubisath Idol, Lil’ Bling, Jademist Dancer
061815DI gave the little amphibian another shot. The world is right once again, another idol bites the dust. Boy have idols fallen hard. Can’t complain about that. The frog wasn’t much of a factor, I just used it to eat the Geysers. Lil’ Bling ended up running away.  Frogs just seem so boring to me at this moment.

Another long break…

Pet 5: H/S Mountain Skunk (Flurry, Perk Up, Bleat)
I haven’t used a skunk much, and when I did I used the H/P with Scratch. Feeling the need for Flurry made me switch to the H/S for the extra speed. I was tempted to take Rake but at the last minute switched to Perk Up.

Battle 5: Rick Stinkley
vs. Rapana Whelk, Graves, Teroclaw Hatchling
061815GIt’s about ten hours after the first two battles from above, and here’s the person that I faced in those battles again. Get a life, buddy. Oh, wait… Anyways, I found the snail less difficult to deal with than the Spawn of G’Nathus from earlier. The battle did take a whopping thirty-six rounds, thirty-six rounds in which I never felt in danger of losing. The snail was tanking my Graves, which meant I had plenty of time to let Grave Destruction come off CD. By the time my opponent realized their folly it was too late. The opposing Graves tried to come in and save the day but my skunk took care of him and did some back line healing to boot. The Teroclaw Hatchling never had the flying bonus while active so the skunk’s 289 speed did pay off against the 260 speed bird. There was a little too much healing going on for my tastes; I can’t see myself using this team a lot.

Pet 6: S/S Alpine Foxling (Flurry, Crouch, Dazzling Dance)
I sort of hate to use Dazzling Dance on really slow pets; it often seems like a waste. I just want a fox for the Flurry. I’m using an S/S because buffed it is faster than a Teroclaw Hatchling with its racial intact. I’m trying to imagine how this is going to work with my plan and I’m not really feeling it. Where will I fit the fox in with my scripted battle plan?

Battle 6: Rick Foxly
vs. Singing Sunflower, Iron Starlette, Wild Crimson Hatchling
061815FThe sunflower made the same mistake as the snail above. It stayed in for a long time against Graves while Grave Destruction did back line damage. The sunny day sure made Consume Corpse nifty. Nifty to the tune of 1123 health. My worry about fitting the fox in was unwarranted; the dazzler went crazy at the end of the battle with Flurry, doing substantial damage to the dragon and iron ball. Dazzling Dance was useful against the 325 speed dragon.

Pet 7: B/B Shimmering Wyrmling (Flurry, Drain Power, Deflection)
Serious work time is over, now it’s time to have some fun. Flurry included. I chose the B/B over the H/P (Mana Wyrmling) in case of running into 260 speed undead. This ought to be interesting.

Battle 7: Rick Wyrmley
vs. Warbot, Bonkers, Graves
061518HI did something stupid on purpose just for the sake of doing it. See, when I used to run a Warbot often I absolutely hated facing Consume Corpse teams. You throw down the mines, they swap in and Consume Corpse away most of the damage mine damage, damn. I hated it. In this battle I saw the Warbot and thought “omg here’s my chance to do that myself!”. I looked at my Graves and thought “but I can clear the battlefield of mines”. I must be really tired because I totally went with choice number one. Haunt, Minefield, Graves comes in… Consume Corpse. I DID IT! I then proceeded to lose. So worth it.

Pet 8: H/S Scalded Basilisk Hatchling (Crystal Prison, Feign Death, Thrash)
Fun time continues with a trip down memory lane. The basilisk is one of my all time favorite pets.

Battle 8: Rick Baskley
vs. Bronze Whelpling, Anubisath Idol, Lil Bling
061815HLil’ Bling was the only pet faster than my basilisk so I had to watch out for that bad pairing. Lil’ Bling started against my kid. I cast Haunt then brought in Graves. Graves damaged the mech and healed. After the kid completed the haunting I brought it to the front to finish off Lil’ Bling. When the dragon came in the kid used Ethereal to avoid Lift-Off then went in for another spooking, the basilisk came in and used Crystal Prison, took out the dragon and a chunk of the idol, Graves finished things up. I had some more pets lined up but I think I’ll call it a night. Good teams.

29 Responses to June 18, 2015

  1. Vevy says:

    I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your write-ups since your return from that brief hiatus. This daily involved some fun pets. I, too, love the Scalded Basilisk Hatchling–probably my favorite moveset in the game.

    Your use of Graves makes him really beefy. I would think these teams have some obvious vulnerability to rabbits due to timing the Haunts around their dodges and, of course that undead-killer flurry.

    I’m glad to see you experimenting with the Wyrmling. I found the P/B Mana Wyrmling to be the best one-on-one counter to Graves/Fragment of Anger (P/B to outspeed the Frag covering your concern expressed above with the Shimmerling). If you open Drain Power vs a conventional Graves opener (Bonestorm into Grave Destruction) and follow up with flurry, you can kill Graves before he drops a second Bonestorm and you mitigate the damage from his two AoEs.

    • Discodoggy says:

      For some reason I thought that there was only one breed of each wyrmling, thanks for pointing that out. It sounds like you’ve had some good experiences with the P/B. I just battled FoA/MPD/Graves with the Rick Wyrmley team above, and you would think that the wyrmling would be a godsend, yet I drew somehow. I even felt that I used it well: didn’t take any strong damage from MPD, used Deflection on Soulrush and did a lot of damage with Flurry. I could have used Drain Power more effectively against Graves as you suggest. I’m going to get a P/B breed to do some more experimenting.

  2. Discodoggy says:

    Here’s how my rickroller teams are doing:

    I think the ABP, ghostpup and skunk thirds will be the best.

    Of those teams, the two losses were to the Frog Kiss mentioned above and to and MPD/ABP/Graves.

    The draws were to a triple Bone Serpent and kid/Graves/imp. Against another kid I really wished that I had Consume Magic.

    Oh, and I missed the perfect chance for a rickroll of my own last night. Wasted opportunity :(

    • Sibel from Kazzak says:

      How does your Rick Frostly (Ghostpup) do vs. Graves+MPD? European servers seem to be teeming with Graves+MPD+top tier (usually AoE). Not sure I can be assed to play right now >.<

      • Discodoggy says:

        I have beaten Graves/MPD with Rick Frostly. I have drawn against it with Rick Stuffley (ABP)

      • Discodoggy says:

        I just fought an ABP, Graves, MPD with Rick Frostly, I won by a huge margin. Can’t say it’ll work every time, but this time it did. The opposing Graves used BONESTORM not Consume Corpse so I was in good shape.

  3. Discodoggy says:

    Edited the part out stating that the Mechanical Axebeak has strong attacks against critters. For some reason I thought that Haywire was a critter beast attack, doh.

    • Liwei says:

      Well, you’re not wrong. Haywire is indeed strong against critters being a beast attack 😉

      • Jere says:

        It was actually changed (maybe patch 6.1) to be a mech attack. It did used to be a beast attack though.

        • Discodoggy says:

          And to make things more confusing I meant to say Haywire was a beast attack in my comment. It’s good to know it used to be a beast attack and I’m not going crazy.

        • Liwei says:

          They changed it? I guess since I never really used it I’d never noticed, heh.

          Either that or they did it after I cancelled my sub and I get to wave my shield of ignorance around.

  4. raxmm says:

    I’ve been toying around with a Silithid Hatchling (H/P, Scratch, Hiss, Sandstorm) against those Graves and other undead AoEers.
    Any opinion? I paired it with Nightshade Sproutling and Bone Serpent and it had been quite nice so far.
    It is even doing Ok against those rabbits I hate :p

    • Discodoggy says:

      This pet has been off my radar for a long time. I tried it in the past and apart from a few moments of glory it never really got the job done for me. It sounds great against Graves, I’ll definitely try it out when I work hard on counter teams. Right now I’m still in the midst of trying out my own Graves exploits… I mean strategies.

    • Discodoggy says:

      I made a Qiraji Guardling, Living Sandling, Silithid Hatchling team. It hasn’t lost in four battles, but I’ve been really lucky with the other team’s sandstorm misses.

      • raxmm says:

        The Silithid Hatchling is doing some nice damage to undead with scratch and racial, even in sandstorm. My 2 other pets can switch to a more interesting weather in case of healing teams or to just make lash/bone barrage good again.
        Hiss is just icing against many non-birds.

  5. Liwei says:

    You know, it occurs to me.

    A good third if you’re aiming for a stalling pet would be one of your two arch nemeses – the blossoming ancient or the magical crawdad.

    I mean that seems to be the theme here and all. Wish would go a long way to making your Graves and Kid last a lot longer (and it’s aquatic and beefy, so it doesn’t die easily to enemy AoE), and the Ancient can just be an awful stalling scumbag while you wait for cooldowns.

    edito – Hyjal Wisp for a less scumbag version, but it’s a lot squishier. Could get sear magic instead of evanescence though, so that’s an option.

    • Discodoggy says:

      Out of the three pets that you listed I would least prefer to use the Blossoming Ancient. Too many bad memories.

  6. tekulve says:

    I would imagine that Darkness would be an issue…the Rich girls team would be especially nasty…nocturnal strike on a crawdad …blinding Graves
    the bone serpent had a bit of a surge in popularity. .but im starting to see it less..

    Most Graves users chose Bonestorm for the time being ..making him less of a threat, but this may and should change..the skull toss atk hits so hard..i dont see why more dont chose the consume corpse move to allow for more noggin tossing!

    So…just imagine facing the blossoming ancient making Sunlight for Graves to consume the Kid?!?!…bad news…if i didnt have an s/s dancer or weather changer..it would be flee time

  7. Vapid says:

    Okay I couldn’t resist. Finally someone on my meta has been using a Murkalot/Graves/MPD combo (I shall call this MGMPD). I do not have a Murkalot (one of the few I do not have), so cannot try the OP setup myself. But I have been debating how to best beat the team. I like Disco’s use of Consume Corpse though.

    To that end I have been coming up with a silly troll counter idea that so far has won every game against MGMPD (7 and counting). I imagine the fellow on my meta is grossly annoyed at this point.

    I wanted something that does undead damage against the Murkalot, negates the AoE from Graves (aquatic) and MPD (critter) and has a heal. My flash of inspiration was the result of frustration against the team earlier in the day. I had been trying to beat MGMPD with my own Graves, Alterac Brew Pup, and Trunks (basically out AoE their team and have heals from Consume and Good Stuff). The battles either resulted in a draw or me barely losing to their last pet with low health = I wish I had more health on my pets.

    But wait … there are plenty of pets with high health on the WCP Best Pets Health tab (http://www.warcraftpets.com/wow-pets/best/). So I picked the top critter pet Scooter the Snail with his 1969 health and Magical Crawdad with 1887 health. We end up with this:

    H/P Graves (Consume**, BONESTORM, Grave Destruction)
    H/H Scooter the Snail (Absorb, Acidic Goo, Headbutt**)
    H/H Magical Crawdad (Surge, Renewing Mist, Wish)

    **Quick side notes: This team has also won against other opponents, the most notable being a Fiendish Imp, Bone Serpent, and MPD. I could see using Skull Toss in slot 1 for Graves. Also Dive in Slot 3 for Scooter might be more beneficial for some teams.

    Against MGMPD the game plays out with me starting with Graves and using the abilities until they all are on cooldown (eventually happens if you use Consume – doesn’t if you use Skull Toss). When that occurs, I swap in the Magical Crawdad to cast Renewing Mist and Wish, swap back to Graves and repeat. The heals from the crawdad keep Graves topped along with Consume, while the two AoE spells take down the opposing team. And thanks to the high health of all three pets the AoE from Graves+MPD are all spread. The Decoy from the MPD can be removed with BONESTORM or Grave Destruction (I even removed it once with Consume, pass, Consume and still won). This counter team relies on Graves doing almost all the damage and the other two pets are bystanders.

    This leads me to believe that as long as you have a extra heal for Graves, the Longevity team could probably be filled by any high health pets, provided that they don’t take strong damage from the enemy Graves or MPD (so no humanoids, beasts, or magic). If there is some cool way to filter/sort pets by health that would be great. For now I will try out different guys from the top 20 listed on the WCP site.

    I am contemplating trying:
    -Living Sandling (has Sandstorm and strong mech damage)
    -Huge Toad
    -Stone Armadillo or Armadillo Pup (could replace Scotter’s role of critter)

    • Discodoggy says:

      Nice counter team. I have not tried the Magical Crawdad with Graves yet, Consume Corpse has been giving me enough healing.

      Do you use Rematch? In the search field on the pets tab you can input “health>1700” and it will show all pets with health greater than 1700.

      I almost resorted to calling Graves MGM last night but it sounded too much like the movie company. MGMPD works much better.

      • Vapid says:

        Didn’t know Rematch had that filter. Will check it out and see what is available that might make the team even better.

        And now it is hilarious. Against the MGMPD on my meta, the opponent has just begun fleeing as soon as they see my team lolol. I guess getting pants repeatedly and not being able to steamroll others like they planned has forced their hand.

  8. Lyraat says:

    I use Consume Magic on my kid. Ethereal is handy, but, if I need to dodge something that I know is coming, I’ll Haunt (if faster) or swap. I have won a lot of matches thanks to the debuff removal, and a few because of the heal.

  9. Vapid says:

    Free time at work today, so I have been doing some more thinking and research into pets with high health (ty @Disco for the Rematch filter) or abilities to further counter MGMPD.

    The first thought that occurred to me is how RI works with Graves. It gives a 100% boost to damage and speed. Graves is only a 211 speed pet, which makes him 422 with RI. This actually allows us some counters based on speed.
    -Flying pets with a speed of 289+ will be faster with their racial
    -Pets that use Adrenaline Rush will be faster if their base speed is 242+
    -Any pet with Leap will be faster with a base speed 212+

    The obvious Flying pets are the HS Royal Moth and HS Skywisp Moth since both have Counterspell which would negate the RI buffed attack. You could then follow with Moth Dust and potentially get a sleep too against Graves.

    Gilnean Raven has an ability called Nevermore which you could cast which locks the Graves out for 5 turns (I suspect they would just pass) and stops RI+.

    Turkeys have an ability called Food Coma which would put Graves to sleep for two turns defeating RI+. Chickens are less useful, but they have Egg Barrage which is strong against Graves and combats MPD Decoys.

    Adrenaline Rush exists on a lot of flyers (useless to us), some critters and beasts (more useful). Sadly none seem to have any good stuns or blocks, but you can take high health pets instead. The HP Alpine Chipmunk has Scratch / Ad Rush / Nut Barrage. The HP Grasslands Cottontail has Flurry / Ad Rush / x. The Infected Fawn is an undead racial pet, HP breed with Flurry / Ad Rush / x.

    Leap follows the same logic as Ad Rush above. The HH Obsidian Hatchling has Flank / Leap / Devour. The HH Worg Pup has Flurry / Howl (maybe Crouch) / Leap. Devouring Maggot comes in HH with Chomp / Stocky Goo / Leap. But my favorite find is the HH Tiny Bog Beast which has Clobber / Leap / Poison Lash so that you could leap when Murkalot is out and then stun Graves on the RI+ round.

    But let us decide we aren’t going to use a speed buff. Then we might find a different blocking mechanism more useful.
    -Two attack walls

    Not many pets have Decoy and arguably the best one to counter MGMPD is actually going to be your own MPD. After that the SB Mechanical Axebeak with Haywire and Decoy would be faster than a RI+ Graves. The last Decoy I might recommend would be the Lifelife Mechanical Frostboar (LLMFB) in the HH variety for extra damage soaking and the move set Charge / Pig Out / Decoy.

    Refuge is an ability I have never used, but seen it plenty of times in pvp battles. To be fair it has never seemed to given my opponents an advantage, but maybe Disco or other battlers can make it work. HH Frostfur Rat seems like a great choice being a critter to take weak MPD damage, plus Flurry / Refuge / Call Darkness are all nice against MGMPD. The Frostwolf Ghostpup has the undead racial so Scratch / Refuge / Ghostly Bite work well. Last might be the HH Forest Sproutling (though I could see an argument made for the SS version) with Lash / Refuge / Sons of the Root.

    Different two attack walls/barriers exist, but only the HH Lesser Voidcaller with Shadow Slash / Prismatic Barrier / Curse of Doom and the HB Thundertail Flapper with Jolt / Buried Treasure / Beaver Dam seemed like good options. The downside of these barriers is that they block attacks from both teams which may give you time to heal, but also gives the opponents MGMPD cooldowns a time to reset. Still if it stops the RI+ damage, then it might be worth it.

    And finally HH Pebble is a pet that counters the MPD more then it counters Graves, but the move set of Stone Shot / Rupture (unless you want Sandstorm) / Rock Barrage would be handy.

    It also appears that two of the WoD Flying Spore pets might be useful. They don’t have high health, but the racial makes them faster so you can use their Blinding Powder ability to stop RI+.

    I forgot to mention that both Flying Sporebats also are okay since they come in HH variety and have Shadow Shock / Creeping Fungus / Spore Shroom. These more so counter the Murk and MPD.

    Also was reading forums and some folks mentioned using the ability Grasp (aquatic) to keep MGMPD from switching pets. The Slithershock Elver and Tideskipper both have Grasp and Clobber which could be cool.

    • Liwei says:

      I’ve always found stuns a fairly reliable way of handling RI.

      Not counting rematches against the same opponent, I’ve yet to see any RI abusers ever expect you to open with a stun as they use RI, leading to their buffed pet getting stunned instead and totally wasting it.

      Watching most of them run after that rather than stick it out was pretty gratifying.

      • Lyraat says:

        Fiendish Imp with Nether Gate is my favorite RI thwart mechanic. Nether Gate, Immolation, swap to back line. Even if my opponent doesn’t use RI on turn 1 (which, as you mentioned, most Murkalot players use RI on turn 1), he usually swaps Murkalot back in, giving me a chance to get Immolation going on the back line to regen health.

  10. Vapid says:

    There may be nothing more rewarding then killing an MGMPD team. Someone on my meta has started using it religiously.

    They have now lost 8 times in a row and fled the most recent game.

    Awww Rick Frosty, how fun you are.

    Have you given any thought to using an S/S skunk with the double heal and flurry? That would counter the MPD a bit more maybe. Also would you consider replacing any of the Rick Frosty three with the Infected Squirrel? The combination of stampede and creeping fungus is pretty deadly.

  11. Vlad says:

    Hey guys! Can anyone please tell me how to play this team? I’ve never done pvp battle pets, only pve. I decided to try this out, and it turns out i have these three pets. Can u give me a brief explanation on how this team plays? What do i start with? do i use haunt on CD or when do i need to actually battle with my kid, and any useful tips u can give to a newbie pvp pet trainer.

    • Discodoggy says:

      Hi Vlad, welcome to pet battling. The effectiveness of all of the Graves/Ghastly Kid combos has diminished greatly due to the undead nerf. I would suggest using an S/S Fiendish Imp to start off with.

      • Jon says:

        Actually, I have been using the Ghastly Kid/Graves/Ghostpup to great success since the patch. I think I am like 15-3 since it launched.

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