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Filed under: Macro Anatomy

Lichborne: Elementary death knight macros

Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly peek into the world of the death knight. Your host, Daniel Whitcomb, is enjoying the most wonderful time of the year, when a death knight can hang around in his natural habitat all day long without seeming creepy. Or no creepier than usual, at least.

As you approach the end game of WoW, one thing you may find out quickly is that the proper use of macros is a great way to take your game to the next level. Sometimes they streamline moves, other times they allow you to perform actions that would be otherwise impossible. Death knights are definitely no exception, and though we'd be here all week if I went through all the ins and out of macro theory, or even death knight macro theory, I figure right now is still a good time to get you started.

Let's look at a few basic essential macros for the various roles and trees of the class.

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Filed under: Tips, Tricks, How-tos, Instances, Raiding, Guides, Death Knight, Macro Anatomy, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Encrypted Text: A Rogue's guide to battleground PvP

Every Wednesday, Encrypted Text explores issues affecting Rogues and those who group with them. This week Jason Harper, the new Rogue feature blogger, discusses battleground PvP, useful macros and techniques that strive to keep you alive longer.

My last Encrypted Text post generated a lot of terrific feedback, and when you smoosh it all up and blend it I think you'll find that saying Rogues are a controversial class is a bit of an understatement. No more especially so than on the PvP side of things. In a future column I'll dig deeper into specific PvE instances, both raid and heroic, as well as give you some commentary on the new skills that come with the Wrath expansion. In the column this week we're talking about PvP and how to get the most out of it with your Rogue. I hope to make this a semi-regular topic, updating as we go, focusing on one or two PvP related items each time.

If you could distill the feelings of the majority of non-Rogues out there, at least the most vocal ones, you'd come up with a collective "over-powered" when it comes to PvP. Designed to counter most (but not all) casting classes, especially those *not* geared or spec'd to prevent spell push-back, our goal is to get our target into melee range and keep them there. Keeping this in mind, my first bit of PvP advice for you is avoid fair fights at all costs.

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, PvP, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Battlegrounds, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Hunter love

We recently had a request for some Hunter macro help, so I thought I would present some unique little gems for you ranged DPS types to use. First of all, let it be known that we we have talked about Hunter macros here before, more than once actually. Secondly, a good source of Hunter-specific macros would be WoWWiki's Useful Hunter Macro page. However, given those resources, you may find yourself wanting more.

I turned back to the World of Warcraft forums, where I, once again, found some of Belleboom's work. The witty troll from the Earthen Ring server has written some useful macros for hunters, complete with slightly silly descriptions.

I'll start us off with this macro, which determines what type of pet you have, and uses the appropriate ability:

Dive/Dash/Growl/Wrench!: Casts Dive if you have an owl, dash if you have a cat, or growl if you have anything else... wrench optional.
  • /cast [pet:owl] Dive; [pet:cat] Dash; [pet] Growl
Next, a macro that feeds or uses Mend Pet depending on your current status:

Feed/Mend Pet:
Based on combat status.
  • /cast [combat] Mend Pet; [nocombat] Feed Pet
  • /use [nocombat] <FoodLinkHere>
Come on back after the break for a few more.

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Features, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Addon counting

For today's short, but sweet, installment of Macro Anatomy, I wanted to share one I found on the forums. Macro superstar Belleboom of the Earthen Ring server has quite a listing of macros, many of which will find their way here in the future.

I wanted to profile this one just for the sheer joy of it. What it does is quite simple, it counts how many addons you're using and prints it in the chat frame. Nothing too complicated, and it works fine if you'd like to copy and paste it to your macro interface.

Here it is:
  • /run local count = GetNumAddOns(); DEFAULT_CHAT_FRAME:AddMessage("You have " .. count .. " addons running, you nutjob!");
I really can't make this any easier, it just tells you how many addons you're using. Some of you may find it interesting to know how many addons you're using. As the screenshot will attest, I am currently using 64 addons on my 20 Night Elf Druid, so I think I'm sort of middle-of-the-road. There have been times when I was pushing over 100 addons, at which point I start feeling like my UI needs some spring cleaning.

That's what you get today, as I've yet to get my head fully out of my posterior this month. (Feel free to send in suggestions on how I could go about doing this.) Vacation ruins my ability to live a normal life. In closing, I want to field this question: How many addons does a player need to be using in order to considered an "Addon Junkie"?

Every week Macro Anatomy takes you on a magic carpet ride through the world of macros. Sometimes you will encounter existing macros that you can use off the shelf. We'll break them down and figure out how they work. Other times we'll just talk about the different parts of a macro and how you can use them to create your own. You can always stop by the shop if you want to catch up or get started with macros.

Filed under: Tips, Add-Ons, Features, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Fishing fun

Sean is diving, sunning himself and trying to drink all the cervezas in Cozumel this week, so don't feel bad if he doesn't respond to emails and comments. He'll be back in action next week, fresh and ready to get the Macro train rollin' again!

For this week's Macro Anatomy, I thought I'd share a fun little fishing macro I found in the forums. Tomza wrote a great macro for those of us wanting to react quickly to enemy players while fishing. I've altered it a bit, as I prefer to use the SHIFT modifier rather than the ALT, but other than that it's pretty much verbatim.

This macro, when clicked will equip your fishing pole if it is not already equipped. If a fishing pole is equipped, it will cast your line. (Two clicks of this macro will equip a pole and cast.) Each subsequent click will cast your line. If you hold down the modifier key (in this case the SHIFT key), you will equip your weapon.

Keep reading for the macro, it's a fun one!

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Filed under: Fishing, Tips, Tricks, Features, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Uncrushable Calculator

Yesterday, I profiled a number-crunching addon that does the math to tell you about the actual effects of your abilities and spells. Therefore, I thought it appropriate to share this number-crunching macro. This is one I've only recently had to use. After a few hours debating the meaning and theory behind becoming uncrushable and uncrittable, I think this macro is a great tool for raid leaders and tanks alike.

Basically this macro adds up your total avoidance to determine whether or not you meet the sacred uncrushable numeral: 102.4% total avoidance.

Regardless of any arguments about the mechanics behind this system, its what is accepted as the way things are. If you're tanking, pushing Crushing Blows off the attack table is one of your primary goals. As a note, Druids cannot become uncrushable, sorry, you're stuck taking it like a bear.

Come back after the break so I can share the macro without cluttering the front page with scripting code.

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Filed under: Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral)

Welcome to this week's Macro Anatomy! Today we'll be taking look at a simple macro I found for my druid alt, whom I am secretly leveling late at night after studying for finals, when I can't seem to bring myself to play my main. On that note, my apologies for the somewhat lackluster installations of this feature, until finals are done, and after my diving trip to Cozumel, things will be back on track.

Now that you are almost aware of my entire life, let us get down to business. This macro serves to make two spells fit into one button, without button modifiers. To be honest, I had to read the spell description for Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral) a couple of times before I got it. (I really shouldn't be trying to assimilate non-school information right now, but I love WoW.) These two spells come in handy, I've already used it on a pesky undead rogue, and I wanted to make sure I wasn't leaving Cat Form or Bear Form while using it.

Come on in to get this little space-saver.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Odds and ends, PvP, Features, Talents, Buffs, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Mouse-Over Spells

This week I profiled Decursive 2.0 over at Addon Spotlight, which has a macro feature that allows you to use its cleansing functionality via a keystroke or a mouse over macro. Many of the comments in the article, as well as those in the Healbot Continued feature, center on the concept of mouse-over healing and casting. To be quite honest, I really didn't understand or use this way of doing things, so I thought I'd look into it and try to break away from my "clicker" tendencies for the sake of change.

I'm primarily a paladin healer, which usually means I concern myself with four spells for healing; Flash of Light, Holy Light, Holy Shock and Cleanse. Although I toss out the occasional Blessing of Protection, this is the bulk of my healing, so I thought I'd work on making two mouse-over macros for my Karazhan run tonight.

The basic use for a mouse-over spell is this command:
  • [target=mouseover]
That's pretty much how you target using a mouse-over, there's more to using this feature, so come back after the break to get cozy with mouse-over macros.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, How-tos, Features, Buffs, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Polymorphing with the Focus Target

Using your focus target has been the topic of much discussion in the past few days here at WoW Insider. Mike mentioned his interest in using macros to utilize the focus functionality built into the default UI. Tekkub's Control Freak was profiled, which basically automates the process of using crowd control abilities through the use of macros.

WoW Insider reader Aaron provided a very good macro for those of you wanting to make use of your focus target to maintain Polymorph on a focus target.

Here's the macro, ready to be copied and pasted into your macro interface:

#show Polymorph
/clearfocus [modifier:shift]
/focus [target=focus,noexists]; [target=focus,dead]
/clearfocus [target=focus,help]
/stopcasting
/cast [target=focus,exists,harm] Polymorph; Polymorph

Come on back after the break for an explanation of what this macro does.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, How-tos, Macro Anatomy

Addon Spotlight: Control Freak

WoW Insider co-lead Mike Schramm brought up an interesting question for today's Breakfast Topic; how can players utilize the Focus Target feature in World of Warcraft? Macros are certainly a great way to manage your focus target and what is being done with it. I've yet to write a installment of Macro Anatomy that covers the topic, so where can one turn if you want to utilize this feature?

Bad boy developer Tekkub has created Control Freak for people wanting to have fun with the focus target and their crowd control abilities. Granted, there are a lot of other things you can do with this feature, but this addon very efficiently automates the process.

After I profiled Tekkub's ChatSettingsFix (2.4), I thought I should start looking into his other mods. As it turns out, Tekkub is a man with the unique ability to provide little fixes and additions that greatly enhance gameplay. I am quickly becoming a fan of his work, so you can expect to see more of the grizzly dev's work here at Addon Spotlight.

Enough of my professions of love for the guy's mods, read on for details about how to use Control Freak.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, Tricks, Add-Ons, Features, AddOn Spotlight, Buffs, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: /castrandom

Of all the macro questions I get asked, how to randomly choose a mount ranks near the top. Many of you new to macros have probably asked this one, wondering how to randomly cast a spell or use an item. Today's Macro Anatomy will address this random request.

So let us imagine that you've got a collection of mounts that you have the hardest trouble choosing from. Members of your party silently suffer while you pick through your list of options. The World of Warcraft client has a built-in function known as /castrandom that can turn your mounting troubles into one-button joy.

Pretend you're an awesome Draenei Shaman and have these mounts: Amani War Bear, Black Ram, Cobalt War Talbuk and the Great Blue Elekk. Now, you want one button which will randomly choose one of your great means of conveyance, here it is:

/castrandom Amani War Bear, Black Ram, Reins of the Cobalt War Talbuk, Great Blue Elekk

Place this on your action bar and there you have it. Wait, you are wondering about a flying mount? Well, keep reading to find out how you can put both riding and flying mounts in the same random mount-selecting macro!

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Filed under: Mage, Tips, Tricks, How-tos, Odds and ends, Features, Mounts, Macro Anatomy

Your Addons vs Patch 2.4

Once again, we find ourselves anxiously waiting for the World of Warcraft servers to come back up. However, today stands out as the best (and worst) variety of Tuesday downtime. Today we see the release of patch 2.4 and, for your addons, it is a day of reckoning. The majority of you are familiar with new content patches and the havoc they wreak on addons, but for those of you new to this; many of your addons could very well be broken.

There are a number of philosophies on how one should approach this. Some would suggest disabling your addons and waiting a few days until the storm subsides. Some have even said you should clear out your Addons folder, or your WTF folder. Clearing out the Addons folder gets rid of the addons, while deleting your WTF folder will clear all player and character settings. I personally go this route when I find that most of my addons are acting "buggy" or weird, or when I want to start with a clean slate.

I recently wrote an article on how you can automate the updating process, which I would recommend you take a look at, the servers are down anyway! Alright, really I would recommend reading through the comments of that post, as some of your fellow readers have some great advice and insight you may find helpful. Also, the folks over at WoWInterface contacted me in regards to their own addon updater, which looks promising as well. They have been busy testing it and have released a Windows version as well as a Mac/Linux version, both of which merit a look in my opinion. WoW Interface also released their Patch 2.4 Survival Guide, which I profiled recently. All this just screams that you've got options, so keep reading!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, Add-Ons, Features, AddOn Spotlight, Guides, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Run phase and beyond!

Welcome, troops, to the final stage of your lock-step macro training. This phase is when you will learn all about modifier keys. I had planned to include conditionals in the Run Phase, but that subject will necessitate its own series of posts, so look for that in the future. From here on out, Macro Anatomy will focus more on macro development and specific macros rather than teaching you the basics. In case you missed out on the basics, go check out my Macro Primer, then you can graduate to the Crawl and Walk phases of macro development.

As I said, we'll be taking a look at modifier key, which can extend the functionality of your macros, as well as helping to cut back on how many buttons you are using on your action bar.

Modifier keys allow you to change the behavior of a macro when pressing one of three keys. The keys available for use as modifier keys are:
  • Shift (shift)
  • Control (ctrl)
  • Alt (alt)
Keep reading to find out how to use these three modifier keys.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, Walkthroughs, Features, Guides, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Walk phase

Photo courtesy of stock.xchngIf you have been following Macro Anatomy, you should be comfortable with macro basics by now. If not, you may want to consider taking a moment to review what we have covered thus far. For the rest of you, welcome to the next installment, where we'll be covering a commonly used, but powerful macro type, the /castsequence command.

This slash command will allow the user to specify a given sequence of commands, tied to a single button. As a reminder, this will not facilitate one-click sequences, but will require you to click or press a bound key for each iteration in the sequence. This also means you'll be timing your input in step with the Global Cooldown.

The most obvious use of the /castsequence command comes into play when you realize you're casting the same spells in nearly every fight. I use this type of macro for grinding, with one for PvP situations as well. (Curse of Exhaution be praised!)

To use this macro, you simply open your macro interface, create a new macro and in the text box, start with /castsequence, then list the spells you want to cast, in order, separated by a comma. It should end up looking something like this:

/castsequence Spell 1, Spell 2, Spell 3, Spell 4


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Filed under: Tips, How-tos, Features, Guides, Macro Anatomy

Macro Anatomy: Crawl Phase

Welcome, my friends, to the second installment of Macro Anatomy. In this episode we'll be going over some basic macro commands and I'll introduce some simple macros for you to learn and play with.

Before we move ahead, I wanted to reiterate an important change to many macros since the release of Patch 2.3 for those of you who are already writing and using macros. The /stopcasting command is no longer necessary between instant-cast, non-GCD spells. An example would be the following macro:

/cast Divine Favor
/stopcasting
/cast Divine Illumination
/stopcasting
/cast Holy Light

To conserve space, it can be shortened to:

/cast Divine Favor
/cast Divine Illumination
/cast Holy Light

Previous articles found on this site may feature macros that still contain this command. So, feel free to remove it when you copy and paste said macros.

Now, let us move onto the "Crawl" portion of our Crawl-Walk-Run approach to macro writing.

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Filed under: Tips, Tricks, How-tos, Features, Guides, Macro Anatomy

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