Pet battle basics: Dragonkin

Dragonkin are game-changers. Dragonkin have, almost without exception, at least one way to alter the weather. This is an example of their ability to fundamentally change the conditions of play. Most dragonkin offer a variety of attacks from multiple damage types. Dragonkin are by and large a flexible and powerful family.

Many dragonkin are found as random drops. Some are rewarded from achievements, or are given as a bonus for buying collector’s edition expansions. Wild dragonkin do exist, but tend to be scarce.

Basic information
  • Vulnerable to Humanoid attacks
  • Strong against Flying attacks
  • Strong offense against Magic types
  • Weak offense against Undead types
  • Family ability: Follow through. Dragonkin gain a damage buff for the next round after reducing an opponent below 25% health. This ability seems to be triggering on any attack against an opponent below 25% at the moment.
  • Signature ability: Tail Sweep. Most pets want to go first, but many dragonkin have this nearly unique ability that does massive damage when they act after their opponent.
How to Train your Dragonkin

Dragonkin level easily. They have a defensive strength against the otherwise supremely irritating Flying family, and while their offensive strength will rarely come into play, neither will their weakness. That said, you can usually count on a dragonkin to have a few damage types to choose from anyway.

The best levelling dragonkin are unfortunately not as accessible as they might be. Li’l Deathwing is, bar none, the most powerful levelling pet in the game. With his early burst moves and high power, this pet tends to utterly dominate the early levels and is even a good choice later in game. Another good choice is the Soul of the Aspects, available from the Blizzard pet store. This pet has a good Beast-type basic attack and access to the strong Reflection move.

For those insisting on wild dragonkin, the Spawn of Onyxia turns out as a good damage-dealer, and I heavily favour the Nether-faerie Dragon as a hard counter against any flying type. There aren’t any others available to capture at lower level regardless.

If you are levelling through trainers, be aware that Northrend tamers tend to emphasise Undead types. Make sure you have an alternate damage type available.

Dragonkin at level cap

Dragonkin have access to their full toolkit at max level, and for a family that emphasises flexibility and big hits, that’s a big benefit. Most dragonkin only get stronger as they go higher. They aren’t really able to distinguish themselves in PvE, though, mostly due to being unable to flex their damage-type advantage.

The Nether Faerie dragon is particularly useful in countering pandaren trainers.

Dragonkin PvP

As mentioned above, Li’l Deathwing is completely ridiculous in low-level PvP. Dragonkin enjoy good representation at all levels, both from cool factor and genuine usefulness. Many dragonkin have high-damage burst moves, which, as in standard PvP, tend to confer an enormous advantage.

Undead types tend to be much more common in PvP than in PvE, while the opposite is true for Flying types; be aware that you won’t have these advantages.

Dragonkin slaying

Due to their general flexibility in terms of damage types, going for a defensive advantage against a dragonkin may not always pan out. That said, you’re at least unlikely to come up against Critter-type moves should you switch for an Undead type.

Humanoids work well, especially those with Reflection, should you be able to time it to reflect their big moves. Evasive types can work well for the same reason.

Notable Dragonkin
  • Li’l Deathwing is great, if you happen to have the Cataclysm Collector’s Edition.
  • Infinite Whelplings are rare spawns at the Caverns of Time. Look outside by the ships. They feature a powerful moveset including a Dragonkin-type variant on Frog Kiss.
  • Wild serpent hatchlings can be caught near the Order of the Cloud Serpent quest hub, but require Exalted with said faction before they become visible.
  • Chrominius is a dragonkin that appears to be a core hound, and drops off Chromaggus in BWL. Be prepared to Baywatch run for ages, though.
Dragonkin I’d like to see

Well, we’ve got standard dragons, eastern dragons, ethereal dragons, proto-dragons, undead dragons, dragon-men and at least one dragon dog. Thing. We’re pretty well covered for variants, is the point.

Something I’d really like to see is more dragons out in the wild, rather than as drops. Also, maybe an actual wyvern – that thing we’re using as a mount is called a Manticore, Blizzard.

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2 comments
  1. repgrind said:

    Keep in mind that, as of the latest PTR patch notes, Reflection is getting changed to … Deflection I think? It will just avoid attacks.

    • Leit said:

      Good point. I’m actually a little behind on patch notes due to awful connection at home. (yeah, I write my posts at work… such a great employee)

      Suspect the change to Reflection is because it bugs out on a number of abilities and when you’ve got certain debuffs/DoTs resolving in the turn.

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