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Addon Spotlight: Distribute right with LootCouncil Lite

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, loot without the numbers and randomness.

One of the areas of addons that I haven't touched on in this column with any real depth is loot addons. It's not because loot addons are not important or necessary but because my past experience with loot addons were never impressive or positive. The first guild that I was a part of that actually used an addon based loot system put their stock in EPGP, a loot system based on effort and gear points. To me, EPGP was a convoluted mess at times; the addon would bug out, and it all just left a nasty taste in my mouth. Plus, I had come from a guild loot culture developed around the famous "don't be a jerk" system, in which people would make judgment calls based on who really needed items over others. This worked 90% of the time.

I've steered away from loot addons because of my poor experience with EPGP, much as I originally strayed away from an Addon Spotlight on Tidy Plates because of my bad experience with that addon. Granted, that wasn't Tidy Plate's fault in the least, but my own addon configuration problems. Suffice to say, I'm giving loot addons another shot, mostly because the guild I am currently raiding with uses LootCouncil Lite -- and I've fallen in love.

Loot is king

Loot distribution is one of those issues that is more volatile than it should be, in my mind. Maybe I am one of those bleeding hearts, but loot isn't the first thing that I want when I hit raids. I value progression over loot because with progression comes more loot. The more bosses you down in greater frequency, the greater your chance of getting the loot you want in any given time frame. Having said that, sometimes I catch myself coveting loot, letting my imaginary armor numbers get the best of me. Getting new stuff is the ultimate end goal of raiding, right?

We will never be able to decide which loot system is best because different systems work better for different groups of players. For my guild, a rotating loot council is an effective way to get upgrades and crucial gear pieces to the people who need them to aid in progression. Loot council also removes chance from the loot equation, opting for smart upgrading over throwing loot to random people who want it. That's where LootCouncil Lite comes in.

LootCouncil Lite

LootCouncil Lite is, despite its name, a robust addon that makes loot council looting more presentable and easier to manage. The addon was developed to address the need for a better way to facilitate loot council looting and is easy for both the loot council and the raiders vying for loot. Not using a loot council system in your raid? Read on; you might be swayed.

How it works

The loot council system works by designating council members who vote on who should get any individual piece of loot. Players link their gear preference (main, off-spec, or pass, which is need but not necessary) to a designated channel, along with the piece of gear they will potentially be replacing. Loot council members then vote on which player's upgrade would be best and deserving of the gear up for consideration. This requires a trusted group of fair individuals to work well and is particularly useful in a 25-man raiding environment where people can be judged on attendance and ability. In my old 10-man group, we all acted like a loot council with a /roll component.

What's so great?

Customization and ease of use are the two biggest factors when choosing a loot system and an addon component. Players need to be able to grasp the concepts of the loot system quickly, especially if you choose to have a rotating group of loot council members who decide on gear. The addon is easy to set up and requires little to no configuration on the part of the non-leader.

Customization abounds! The creator of LootCouncil Lite, Blacksen, has created an informative video about how LootCouncil Lite works and its customization features. The loot leader can set the number of votes allowed, whether members of the loot council can vote for themselves, and what channels item "bids" are accepted in. Loot council members can sort their columns by lowest ilevel item up in the bid window and can see the other votes going on in real time. The whole addon is sleek and functional.

One thing I'd like

LootCouncil Lite would be improved a bunch by a small user interface element that starts and stops bids, negating some of the chat box functions. It can feel a bit clunky in the beginning, but things get better with time. Fewer text commands would go a long way toward making the addon a little more user-friendly, I think.

Perks

One of the major perks of a loot council system is that there aren't really any numbers to have to worry about. DKP, EPGP, and other number-centric loot systems have players playing the odds, politicking their way around points, and drumming up drama by holding off on bidding. Loot councils don't have points to track and an addon like LootCouncil Lite has a lot less math to do in that regard.

Sure, there can be drama, but that's not the addon's fault! If you're looking for a new loot system with an addon component that is stable and numbers-free, tell your guild leaders to check out LootCouncil Lite. Here are some (potentially real) testimonials from guildmates:

Bliky: "I don't like loot council because I didn't get my bow. The addon is fine, though."
Erlend: "It's ... a loot system ..."
Pirex: "LootCouncil Lite sometimes feels like my grandma is passing out loot."
Matticus: "I'm too busy watching hockey."

You guys are no help.

Download LootCouncil Lite at [Curse] or [WoWInterface].

Mat,

I'd been using Elphie's Imterrupt Say (aka I Interrupted That) as a broadcast for my kicks for raiding, I liked the announce in /say to let other interrupters know that mine was on cooldown, but with 4.1, it seems that it no longer works (something to the do with combat reporting, so I understand). Is there another addon that works similarly? Thanks

Geoffory
Rogue, Steamwheedle Cartel, US

Thanks for the email, Geoffory. Raeli's Spell Announcer has been working well for a bunch of people I know and still seems to be their addon of choice for announcing spell interrupts. It was even featured on Addon Spotlight back in January. Commenters, I am sure, will also discuss their favorite spell announcers.
I tried Adibags, and love it. I just cannot figure out how to separate a stack in the bag so i can mail something. I was wondering if you could help me with this. Thank you very much. Ciarcy on Draenor
Thanks for the email, Ciarcy. When I need to separate stacks in AdiBags, I just shift-click the item, separate out the number of the item I want, and then place that item onto the "empty" bag slot that consolidates all of your unused bag spaces. That will place the stack into the bag as its own entity.

If you want to send one stack of an item that is "virtually" stacked by AdiBags -- like ore, for instance -- all you have to do is right-click the meta-stack once, and it will put one full stack of whatever you clicked into the mail. Just right-click. You'll be amazed.

See you all 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 mat@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

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