I've just broken off from 'wasting' a couple of hours levelling an all-mechanical team, having just discovered the appeal of pet battles. My clockwork gnome is also the lynchpin of my team, with a pet bombling and a lil' smoky. I'm also training up a christmas team of the male and female helpers and a tiny snowman, all of which throw snowballs. I like that you don't know who you're playing, and that it doesn't really matter at all whether you win or lose.
I had, it turns out, 152 pets - just vendor, quest/achievement rewards, christmas presents and constructs (my main is an engineer). I haven't really tried wild trapping yet, I suspect my enthusiasm will wane relatively quickly.