JESKA’S MESSY DESK - The Battledome. Just mentioning the name evokes vivid images
of long, impressive clashes, of pets talented and strong. What is it about this
highly competitive part of Neopia that draws people in? What lures people to this
sport so much that they spend thousands- no, millions on training, not to mention
weaponry? Why invest time that could be spent otherwise, learning strategy or
the strong and weak points of opponents? I inquired some regular Neopets users
on these issues, and I believe I have discovered the answer… or answers.
When questioned about why they were attracted to the Battledome several Neopians
responded that it provided them with an interesting challenge that other parts
of the site might not necessarily give. They said that battling was an ongoing
trial that required immense attention to detail, a skill honed by time, constant
training and study. It is a hobby not undertaken by the weak at heart.
“I enjoy the challenge. A battle is like a game of chess. I try to pick my
opponents carefully hoping for a power/weapon match. The really enjoyable matches
are the ones I'd win or lose by only 20 HPs.” –Ghotiphaze56
“Jhonen_C: I love the Battledome! It's a great physical challenge to keep you
in tiptop shape, plus it's fun inventing tactics and ideas for attacks. Yes,
it's costly, but pretty much any hobby that you really get into is going to
cost you a bit of money.
I've been battling for about a year and a half now, and I don't see myself
quitting anytime soon. It's such great fun and a wonderfully exciting experience!
With every battle I fight, I just get that much better, and even if I lose,
I learn from my mistakes and make sure not to make them next time. It's wonderful
to see just how far I've gotten after all these months of training and battles,
and very exciting to think of just how much better I'm going to get in the future.
I love the Battledome!” –Thegreenmooseofdoom
Others said the rewards reaped from time in the Battledome, or its fundamental
place in Neopia is what makes the Battledome so fun and interesting. . Still
others battled for the trophies, and the countless rewards for investing in
the Battledome. The reasons for battling were many and extremely varied for
different people, ranging from an intriguing challenge to a way to blow off
“Personally I do it because it's an essential part of Neopets. After all, so
much of Neopets really is based around the stats. You have the neggs, weapons,
schools, etc, so if you just completely disregard battling it's like skipping
out on an essential part of the Neopets experience.
Also there are the nice perks of trophies and being able to participate in
the wars, which is another thing about sort of experiencing Neopets in one of
it's most loved traditions.” –Laurensama
“I like it, because, well, it's kind of like a reward for my time. It's something
to look forward to trying out after spending thousands on codestones. I mean,
what's the point of improving stats if you aren't going to use them? I train
for it, because I think it's fun! I mean, I spend time and money to train my
pets and I like to see what a good job I've done. It's something to be proud
of, even if it IS just a game.” –Kurokitsune_
“I like battling for many reasons, but mostly because it feels good to beat
an opponent that you have had a really hard time fighting or to beat a friend
or win a guild battle tourney or something like that. It gives you a certain
sense of accomplishment to win.” –Patrick112
“I have one true Battledome pet-- stonewolf3x. He's the only one I actively
train or have decent weapons for. But I got into BD fighting just for the trophies--
the war trophies and the Defenders of Neopia. I don't battle just for "the fun
of it". It's very rare that I fight in two player fights and it's always with
someone I know. With things floating around like Chia Flour or stealing weapons,
the a BD fight can be more of a headache than it's worth-- and yes, it's the
most expensive hobby on Neopets with decent Hidden Tower weapons starting in
the 5 million Neopoint range.” -Stoneman3x
Not everyone is engrossed in the Battledome however, so I decided to explore
why they would wish to not take part in what others considered such an important
part of Neopets. Most said that their pet’s personality was that of a pacifist,
or that battling was so incredibly confusing they didn’t bother to fight.
Jakerth, my pacifist Shoyru, said that she simply doesn’t believe in fighting.
She will battle on the rare occasion that she must defend her younger siblings,
but normally she abstains from anything to do with the Battledome.
“I have one pet who will never fight in the Battledome, and it's simply because
of his personality. It's just not in Rooruon's nature to fight.” –Tdyans
“Lilabelle? Battle? She could break a nail hoof!” -Tennmagpie
“Although now I'm starting to get interested in the Battledome (must...have...codestones...),
before, the reason why I didn't get into it was because I always thought that
it was so confusing. I mean, I read hundreds of BD Tips articles on how to get
better, and it involves so much researching on which items are the best and
which items are better suited for a certain species and how long it will take
to save up for that certain item... it all got jumbled up in the end.” – Christinetran
“Miss Fyres and Reallyconfused will never fight because it's not in their natures.
But I equipped Miss Fyres with a plastic butter knife and I equipped RC with
a Meerca Propeller Hat so they wouldn't be sitting there crying every time I
went to the equipment status page.” -Stoneman3x
“I have Kyra participate some, but I don't feel like spending the money to
get a really good item. However, what's more to the point is that my connection
is slow and constant refreshing to battle is a pain, so I just don't bother
most of the time.” -Barbcat00
“My pet, Quatringa, doesn't do fighting. Although I've always said that it's
because pacifism is part of her character, I guess the real reason is because
it's so confusing! All these weapons and hitpoints and strength and agility...
is it really worth it?” –Indigokitten
Apparently most people and pets feel it is definitely worth the millions spent
on lengthy training, sophisticated weaponry, and expensive healing potions to
participate in the Battledome.
My own Battledomer, Seeker_of_Song, put it this way when I asked her why the
Battledome was so attractive: The challenge, the intrigue, the feeling you get
after finally defeating a tough opponent… They make it worth all the time and
Neopoints put into it. It forces you to set a standard for yourself, to push
your limits and improve yourself. It compels character development for true
improvement. The Battledome will always be a big part of Neopets, no matter
what else goes on. People and Neopets will always feel that enigmatic urge to
improve themselves, to become stronger, faster, more enduring, and because of
that the spirit of the Battledome will never die. It will continue through the
years, continue through the Neopets that see the far off goal of becoming the
best and work to achieve that elusive goal.
And I believe I agree.
Author’s Note: Thank you for reading my article! Feedback is always welcome
and appreciated. Thanks to everyone who I quoted for being such good sports.