I know that many players are unhappy with ranger pets AI and behavior. Fact that you need revive fallen pet every time is annoying too. The pathfinding is simply a pain in the arse. It’s common to see how’s the pet chase the target and cannot bite it at all.
I was able to play in yesterday (12th of august) stress test. I tried the sPvP and played as engineer. But paid attention to pets behavior on the field – cause pet problems even more critical in PvP. I was thinking about rolling ranger but decide to skip it until ArenaNet fix the ranger’s little friends.
Indeed, there are a lot of problematic issues with pets. Especially in big fights with many players constantly running, circling, dodging and jumping around. It seems that pets are simply became lost in the battle.
But in the same time I’ve noticed that ranger with pet can be quite effective in one-on-one PvP. Especially if you fight in close space. Battle of Kyhlo map is a good example. You might know that there are two trebuchets on the opposite sides of the map. Wise trebuchet operator will use very defensive build which gives him high survivability in case of sudden attack. But ranger with pet have very good chances to slay that wise trebuchet operator down. And considering the small size of spot where the trebuchet is located pet will have no problems with chasing the target down.
So I think one of the possible tactic for ranger in random sPvP matches can be hunting for lone targets. In that case pet really helps the player rather than mindlessly circling around.