Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. Everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same. This week, announce yourself with style and grace!
As Cataclysm chugs along and we grow more and more accustomed to the way things will be from here on out, some addons rise to the top of the importance list. Luckily, here on Addon Spotlight, we get to examine these new essentials and let you know some of the cooler tools you can use to make life in Azeroth a little bit easier.
Today, we're talking interrupts. Well, there's more than interrupts going on here, but the reason I love this addon is mainly its interrupt-announcing abilities. Lost? Don't feel bad. Get ready to introduce yourself to one of your new best friends, Raeli's Spell Announcer.
The new hotness
Cataclysm has brought with it a resurgence of the crowd control and interrupt mindset, once lost to the facerolling of Wrath of the Lich King heroic dungeons. Nowadays, spell and ability interrupting is more important than ever, especially in heroic and raid content. Baron Ashbury is a great example of a fight in which, if players are not competent and vocal with their dispelling, you could be in for a long encounter. Maloriak, one of the fights in Blackwing Descent, is an encounter based around using the interrupt mechanic to stagger adds, making the encounter possible.
With the new importance placed on interrupting and the communication surrounding successful interrupts, I thought it would be prudent to recommend one of my favorite tools for such a job.
Announcing your interrupts
While interrupt announcements aren't Raeli's Spell Announcer's biggest feature, they're certainly my favorite. Letting your group or raid know when your interrupts have successfully or unsuccessfully done their job is vital in case you need some backup on a particularly nasty spell, like Lady Naz'jar's shock attack that can kill pretty quickly. Also, if you miss an interrupt for some reason, healers can see and quickly adapt to the situation, making sure the right people get the heals they need to survive.
Setting up Raeli's is easy and straightforward, even allowing you to create your own custom announcements using a robust set of keywords. From the main customization menu, hit Spell Options and click Dispel Magic. From here, you can set the options for your personal buff and debuff dispels that you successfully or unsuccessfully remove or prevent. You can set what channels your announcements will be broadcast to. Tip: You'll want to keep this to one channel (for the most part) to avoid a bit of spam. Do your group and raidmates a favor and don't make that text scroll too fast!
Spell announcing at its best
Raeli's is definitely not a one-trick pony. In fact, I picked out of the addon one of the auxiliary features that just happens to be done the best with this addon. Raeli's Spell Announcer's main purpose of spell announcing is so easy and excellent that it almost feels like a bonus to the interrupt announcing.
Sometimes having a textual/visual cue for important spells like Hymn of Hope are great to have in addition to yelling it over Mumble. Letting people know what you're doing ability-wise is always helpful in making snap decisions based on what is going on in the fight. Speaking of priests, I know a bunch of boomkin who would love a text announcement when they have a Power Infusion go off on them.
Raeli's Spell Announcer also has the nice little feature of a configurable reminder system that lets you know when certain buffs that you can cast aren't up. These reminders can be set locally so that they are only visible to you. Sometimes, after getting caught up in the heat of wipe after wipe, charging into battle without all of your buffs up is the norm. Raeli's can offer that gentle reminder, making sure you never go running into the fray without all your kit.
I think you guys will like Raeli's Spell Announcer. I love addons that are simple, easy, and so incredibly useful, and Raeli's hits all three. Interrupts are the new hotness in Cataclysm, so make sure your group or raid knows that you're doing your job.
Download Raeli's Spell Announcer at [Curse].
Mailbag, you say? Mailbag!
With everyone (including me) concentrating on leveling, I somehow missed a key guild leader addon disappearing in The Shattering. I wanted to send out mail to our raiders now that we are looking at raiding soon. My second favorite mail addon MassMailer was gone (Postal is definitely number one). No one wants to get spam mail, but it was really nice to be able to set up one mail item to be sent to my raiders or my officers. Does anyone have a viable option?
If you need me, I'll be at the mailbox ...
Mystris <Running Amok>
Thanks for the email, Mystris. I think that I have answered this question before, but I think it bears repeating. Mass mailer addons were rendered useless and defunct once the 4.0.1-4.0.3 changes went into effect (much like how the auction house now requires more player input to deal with auctions). I know it's a pain in the butt, but you could use the calendar features to send out guild invites to members' calendars reminding them of certain events.
It was really cool seeing your UI last week, and I cannot wait until you put your panels up for download. Quick question, though. How did you make your time, mail and durability in plain text? I just cannot find out how to do that.
Thanks for the email, Jangrot. First, I'm glad that you liked my UI, and I should have my panels up soon. I want to make a little tutorial on how to throw it together, too, so it's all dependent on my time.
Second, the addon that I used to get that plain text look for those UI elements is called SLDataText, one of my favorite addons of all time. It's so simple but works so well and has some amazing features, especially for a guy like me who loves plain text where it works.
See you guys next week!
Addons are what we do on Addon Spotlight. If you're new to mods, Addons 101 will walk you through the basics; see what other players are doing at Reader UI of the Week. If there's a mod you think Addon Spotlight should take a look at, email firstname.lastname@example.org.