Addon Spotlight focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. We'll look at everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same! This week, I cop to not knowing a thing about casters and give some recommendations from my awesome caster friends.
Welcome back to the Addon Spotlight miniseries on class-specific addons. Last week, we took a look at a few specific addons for the paladin, death knight and the shaman. This week, we're forging ahead with three more classes: the warlock, the mage and the priest. If an addon is recommended that isn't particularly useful for your specialization, fear not! This type of Addon Spotlight will happen again in the future. Let us commence the celebration of these three fine caster classes and their addons.
Green means go
Back in vanilla WoW, my main was a raiding priest. The name of the game back then was healing, and you were crazy for doing anything but. So I grew up in World of Warcraft as a tank and raid healer during fun times in fun places such as Molten Core, Blackwing Lair and beyond. Shadow priests were second-class citizens when it came to DPS. By the time shadow got its due, I had already been so ingrained to the healing lifestyle that the world of DPS never caught up with me. In addition, the guild needed paladins for the then-upcoming Burning Crusade, and I heeded the call. The shadow priest was forever lost to me.
Some readers sent in some awesome suggestions for shadow priests, considering my experience playing as one is limited. The one that caught my eye was a little addon called ShadowGreenLight, a comprehensive variable calculator that lets the user know whether or not it is worth it to cast Shadow Word: Pain yet during a boss encounter. ShadowGreenLight works by taking into account raid buffs, internal cooldowns, procs, talents and even encounter-specific buffs. It spits out a green skull if Shadow Word: Pain can be cast with maximum efficiency. Little addons like this are, again, some of my favorites, as the guesswork is essentially taken out of a spell with a huge amount of potential. Your DPS might even get a little better, too!
ShadowGreenLight also works for warlocks and their Corruption spell. While I have warlocks in the queue next for an addon, ShadowGreenLight is a freebie for you too. Once again, all raid buffs and debuffs are taken into account to tell the user whether or not to use Corruption yet. Green icon means go -- it's that simple.
Download ShadowGreenLight at [Curse].
Not my forte
Warlocks are another one of those DPS caster types I have little experience with, but from years of playing WoW, I have gleaned much information about the class and their mechanics. One thing that I've learned is that the best warlocks are masters of their cooldowns, durations and DoTs. When I put out the call for warlock addon help, the overwhelming response was ForteXorcist.
After doing some research on ForteXorcist for my Sexycooldown column, I knew something was special here. There are just so many utilities in this package that I was floored. ForteXorcist includes a soulstone tracker, summoning UI element, shard counter, healthstone tracker, spell and DoT counter, and spell and cooldown timers. The bars look a bit overwhelming at first, but any experienced warlock could grapple this stuff pretty easily. The options are simple and straightforward, and bars are configurable enough to suit any UI motif.
If you are a warlock and currently do not have a spell tracker and DoT timer, ForteXorcist is a great tool for bringing you a lot of the information you can use to hone your craft. Do not be intimidated by the number of timers -- it all gets easier as you practice.
Download ForteXorcist at [Curse] or [WoWInterface].
Last but not least
My next character is going to be a mage. I'll definitely need some guidance on that a little later, if anyone has some awesome advice. In the meantime, let me give you mages a little help in the form of another cooldown and spell tracker made specifically for you. A good mage friend of mine recommended Scorchio! 2, a mage-specific cooldown and ability tracker that monitors mostly everything a mage needs to worry about. Scorchio! 2 features simple bars that track many mage abilities, including Improved Scorch, Living Bomb, Winter's Chill, Slow, Polymorph and many others across multiple targets. In addition, the addon tracks other abilities such as Mirror Images and Clearcasting to get the most out of these abilities.
Scorchio! feels like a great central hub for most of the information a grouping and raiding mage needs when dealing with so many cooldowns and abilities. Scorchio! is constantly being updated and changed, and according to my secret mage sources, feels very comprehensive in regards to the information being presented. I do hope that Scorchio! is able to help many mages grab hold of their abilities and make life just a little bit easier.
Download Scorchio! 2 at [Curse] or [WoWInterface].
Three more classes down, and only four classes remain. Hunters, druids, rogues and warriors will be (barring unforeseen circumstances) rounding out the first edition of class addons.
Let's end with another staff pick from my recent foray into the internal WoW.com email list. You guys seemed to enjoy this segment on the last Reader UI of the Week column, according to the email response that I received. This staff pick comes from Kelly Aarons, artist extraordinaire and creator of WoW.com's very own Byron the Tauren Rogue. Kelly writes:
"Deadly Boss Mods -- teaching noob raiders like me to not stand in stuff!"
Deadly Boss Mods is one of those addons that I really cannot live without. With many different events going on around me, including my own inability to not stand in fire most of the time, Deadly Boss Mods makes the world work. I don't know what it is about fire -- the alluring, crackling sound, the delightful burning smell or even the beauty of the dancing flames ... I digress. Also, I need a battle res.
The first thing that many of you will comment is, "How on earth is Deadly Boss Mods a pick when everyone should already have it?!" Well, everyone doesn't have it. Sad. Be a thoughtful and good citizen of the WoW community, and give every newbie you meet the good grace of three pieces of fantastic advice: First, get Deadly Boss Mods. Second, don't Death Grip mobs off the tank -- it's a taunt. Finally, to join my guild and get awesome loot, just press Alt-F4.
That's it for this week, addon junkies.