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Wizard101 (W101)
KingsIsle Entertainment | Play Now
MMORPG | Setting:Fantasy | Status:Final  (rel 09/02/08)  | Pub:KingsIsle Entertainment
PVP:Yes | Distribution:Download | Retail Price:n/a | Pay Type:Free | Monthly Fee:$09.95
System Req: PC Mac | ESRB:E10+Out of date info? Let us know!

Columns: On Your Marks

By Vanessa Mythdust on July 13, 2016

On Your Marks

It's safe to say most people are aware of my well-fed derby obsession in Wizard101. That's right; I fully admit it's an obsession. It actually all started when I created a new goal - to collect all the badges. In order to achieve that goal, I needed to earn what seemed like such a rare title ... pet warlord. With a little help from a good friend, I eventually learned the derby ropes, conquered the ranked race track, and was able to equip my pet warlord badge with pride. That was three years ago. Yet here I am, still enjoying the thrills that pet racing supplies me.

It saddens me that not a lot of people explore all that derby has to offer. I know it may seem confusing at first, but with a little effort, anyone can discover the hidden secrets and keys to success. But why put in that effort in the first place? Here's why all Wizard101 players should give derby a go.

Pet Warlord. Ever wanted to get your hands on an uncommon badge? Pet warlord sure fits the bill. Or perhaps you're like me and want to complete your badge collection? Either way, pet warlord is a neat badge to own and show off.

Racing is exciting and fast-paced. If you want a break from turn-based combat and spell countdowns, derby is for you! As soon as the pets leave the starting line, it's constant action until the finish.

The only energy amulet in the game requires Pet Knight rank. Sir Nigel Higgenbottom in the Pet Pavilion sells the Amulet of Dragon Steam for 300 arena tickets. The catch is that it can only be bought with a Pet Knight rank. If you are an avid pet trainer, fisher, or just like having some extra energy, you might want to pick up racing to obtain this useful amulet.

The derby community is friendly and welcoming. The number one complaint I get from PvP players is that the atmosphere is hostile. For the most part, the derby community loves new racers and will do everything they can to help out. Whether it's racing tips, developing pets, or just chatting strategy, people are usually willing to give their input and time to you.

Starting Out

If you do decide to put yourself out there on the derby track, there are a few things that I think new racers should be aware of.

Teen and Adult pets get the most ranked matches. There is nothing wrong with racing higher level pets, in fact, ancient, epic, and mega pets are super fun to race. But if you want to quickly climb the derby ranks, teen and adult pets are your best bet. Whereas some ancient and up matches can have a 30 minute wait time (or more), teen and adults can usually get a match within 5-10 minutes.

Your pet's talents are actually much more important than their derby abilities. Selfish talents are the key to winning derby races. Every 45 points a stat (strength, agility, will, or intellect) goes up, the cheer cost on that particular surface will go down 1. Although it may not seem like much at first, a 1 cheer cost difference is huge in a race. Worry about the hurries, charges, mutes, and saps later ... selfish talents first!

Hurries are great, but they aren't the only winners. Many new racers love hurry abilities and there's nothing wrong with that. I personally love hurries and have many pets that have them. Just be aware that there are many other abilities out there that can be quite deadly if used properly. Keep an open mind when developing a derby pet.

The racer wins the race, not the pet. Sure the pet is the one who crosses the finish line, but really it's you, the player, who wins derby races. Strategy can make or break races and practice races are a great way to experiment and hone in on your abilities.

Derby might not be the first thing that comes to mind when someone says "Wizard101," but it's an aspect of the game that I think many people are missing out on. Are you the next up-and-coming derby racer? There's only one way to find out. 

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