So, Blizzard surprised us all yesterday by opening up in-game pets for sale on the Blizzard store. One of them, the Pandaren Monk, is linked to charity, in that Blizz gives 50% of the proceeds of his sale to the Make-a-Wish Foundation. (I'll address my thoughts on paid pets being a good or bad thing in another post.)
Here's the little fella in action:
I bought him partly out of curiosity, partly out of my duty as a half-assed blogger to investigate in a half-assed way, and partly because some of the money goes to charity. But mostly because Pandaren are just cool.
The process is very straight-forward. You login to the Blizzard store using your Battle.net account, and purchase the pet. I had a card on file from a previous purchase, so it took under a minute. You're then taken to an association page that presents you with the accounts within your Battle.net account. As I've only got the one WoW account, that was my only option. You click a button to associate the pet with the account, and you're done.
Well, and there won't be any surprises for those of you who have had other "special" pets in the past: it arrives by mail. Who from? One Chen Stormstout, the pandaren who could be found in Warcraft III. That's a nice touch.
From there the process is oh, so very familiar. A nice wee bit of character text:
To me he looks bigger and more detailed than the other pets in the game, closer in scale to a pet with a Pappa Hummell's buff on them than a normal pet. They seem to be trying to give some extra value to the paid pets. But one thing they won't be is rare. There were dozens of them in Dalaran last night, on our low pop server.
We've definitely entered a new age of WoW. But is it a good thing or not?