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Posts with tag addon-spotlight

Mat McCurley says goodbye to WoW Insider

It's time to say goodbye MY LAST DAY
Well, here we go. This is my last day at WoW Insider, after two and a half years of writing, podcasting, and interacting with one of the greatest communities online. Having the opportunity to write for you and with these wonderful people has been one of the greatest experiences of my life.

I started playing World of Warcraft back in May of 2004 during the closed beta test. My time and tenure in Star Wars: Galaxies was winding down, and Dark Age of Camelot was far in the rearview mirror. None of us knew what World of Warcraft would become or how much the game would influence some of our lives. For me, World of Warcraft represents time, effort, passion, and drive; when every other option available was lacking, uninteresting, or just wrong, I wrote about my passion. I'll never stop playing because I see no reason to stop.

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Filed under: WoW Insider Business

About the Bloggers: Mathew McCurley

About the Bloggers introduces you to the people behind WoW Insider. You can find articles on more of our staffers in earlier About the Bloggers profiles.

What do you do at WoW Insider?

Originally, I came on staff to take over the Addon Spotlight column and to help revive and reinvigorate the Reader UI of the Week feature that people have loved in the past but had dropped off as a feature. I applied to work for the site with only the addon columns in mind. Over time, after a few guest stints on The Lawbringer and generally always being around to help with the main site, I've graduated to blogging most days and taking over The Lawbringer full time. It's my labor of love -- I get to teach and discuss my opinions about lots of different esoteric gaming topics.

I was into podcasting for a while with my own little network and wanted to be a guest on the WoW Insider Show for a long time, well before applying to work on the site. I bugged Sacco to let me be a guest and, before you know it, I was sleeping on the show's proverbial couch and they couldn't get rid of me. Now my name is on the banner. It's how I roll.

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Filed under: About the Bloggers

Addon Spotlight: Essential addons for raid leaders

Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

A reader wrote in a few days ago with the question "What add ons would you consider helpful/essential for a new raid leader?", and as a raid leader myself, I thought it was such a good question that I'm devoting this Addon Spotlight to it.

Deadly Boss Mods

Boss mods are very helpful for all raiders, of course, but particularly crucial for raid leaders, who need to call out when raiders need to do things. If you're not familiar with boss mods, they basically aim to tell you any information about boss abilities that you might need to know during a fight. For instance, on XT-002, boss mods will tell you if anyone has a bomb debuff, when XT is about to throw a Tantrum, how long the heart has left, and so on.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Raiding, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: I Have Macro Lol!


Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

We covered another Ackis mod, Ackis Recipe List, just last Sunday. This one is (in my opinion) even cooler, and will be of interest to a wider audience than recipe completists. I Have Macro Lol!, or IHML for short, generates a dynamic macro (like Mounted) for you to use in various situations, like dailies and boss fights. You can use just one slot on your action bar, and the macro will adapt itself to whatever situation you happen to be in.

From the configuration interface (/ihml), you can set up what macro you want to use in any given boss encounter or zone. The macro is generated upon entering a zone or loading BigWigs boss modules for a boss fight (no support for Deadly Boss Mods, as far as I know). You can also set up default macros for parties, raids, PvP, etc.

The real value here is dailies. There are several different daily zones in Wrath, all of which have different items that need to be used. Back in BC, I could get by with just my Isle of Quel'Danas macro; nowadays, if I was still bothering with dailies, I would need about six different macros to swap out if it wasn't for something like IHML. The boss functionality is just icing. Thanks again, Ackis, for another solid mod to fill a gap.

Download I Have Macro Lol! at WoWInterface or Curse

Addons are what we do on Addon Spotlight. Let Power Auras Classic show you what you need to know with pretty glowing pictures. Check out another Ackis mod: Ackis Recipe List. And remember, Addon Spotlight is fueled by viewers like you, so if you have a mod you think we should take a look at, drop us a line.

Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Power Auras Classic


Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

Power Auras Classic is, as the name might suggest, a powerful mod. It does something that you may not know you had a need for: displaying visuals on your screen based on various conditions. For instance, on my rogue, I have it set to display a big red blood drop in the left-center of the screen whenever I don't have Hunger for Blood up.

It's incredibly flexible, and as is the case with most very flexible mods, it takes some work to get the most out of it. For each aura, you can set the position, size, color, and alpha of the texture you want displayed, what conditions you want it displayed under, how you want it to fade in and out, and probably more options I haven't gotten to playing around with yet.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: SmartBuff


Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

Buff smart: use SmartBuff. This addon is pretty comprehensive and crazy configurable, and is designed to facilitate and partially automate the buffing process. Here's how it works:

  • Check off which buffs you want to keep up, on what classes, main hand/off hand (if applicable), and when you want it to remind you (in combat, out of combat, 10 seconds remaining, etc).
  • Under the specified conditions, SmartBuff will put a reminder up on your screen (also configurable, of course) telling you who needs what buffs.
  • Now simply click the SmartBuff button, or scroll your scroll wheel (if you have that option set), and the necessary buffs will magically be applied for you!

It doesn't get much easier than that. SB also supports setting up profiles, for PvP vs. raids vs. parties, for instance.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight, Buffs

Addon Spotlight: DagAssist

Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

I love it when people send in tips for cool addons. There was a time when I could subscribe to the RSS feed for an addon site and check out each new mod as it came out, but the scene is too big now; I'd be at it all day. Today we'll look at DagAssist, which was submitted by Rodney earlier this afternoon.

DagAssist puts a single, quite attractive button on your minimap that, when clicked, opens a pop-up menu containing things like:

  • Teleports and portals, for mages
  • Summons for warlocks
  • Profession skills
  • Hearthstone

You can see what it looks like for my warlock at right.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight, Classes

Addon Spotlight: Daily Quest Viewer

Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

Daily Quest Viewer is my favorite kind of addon: it solves one problem well. It tells you what today's daily quests are, enabling you to stop pestering your guild (or the trade channel) for information. My guild has developed a policy of putting the daily dungeon and daily heroic in the message of the day, but that only works if an officer has managed to check the dailies and update the message.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Quests, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: AuctionLite


Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

Slightly continuing in the vein of "alternatives to," today's Addon Spotlight looks at an addon that some prefer to the mighty Auctioneer. Auctioneer is one of the all-time great WoW addons; it's been around forever and offers pretty much every auction-related feature you could possibly think of. Unfortunately, massive feature set and good book-keeping facilities come at a cost: system resources. There's no denying that Auctioneer is well up there on the list of mods that use rather a lot of memory and CPU.

Enter AuctionLite. The "lite" applies both to its feature set and its resource footprint. It doesn't cover everything Auctioneer does, but the core use cases, at least for me, are covered:

  • Track average prices
  • Suggest prices for listings based on what's on the market right now (undercut)
  • Rapid listing and buyout
  • Calculate disenchant prices
  • Show auctions that look like good deals

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Features, AddOn Spotlight, Making money

Addon Spotlight: Alternatives to Outfitter

Every weekend (ish), Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

The addon world is currently abuzz with reactions to Blizzard's new addon policy (briefly: you can't charge for addons or solicit donations for them in-game). I'm not going to go there in this column, since it's been pretty well covered around the blogosphere and in any case I don't want to ignite a flame war.

However, I do want to talk about an issue related to the developments surrounding the new addon policy. The author of Outfitter (and GroupCalendar) has chosen to cease publishing those addons (in protest, asapparently). I rely on Outfitter on all of my characters, and I'll be sad to see it go. But if it isn't going to be updated any more, it's time to start looking for replacements.

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Filed under: Items, Add-Ons, Features, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: PoMTracker

Every weekend (well, almost every weekend), Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

Before I get started, this addon is useful to one class only: Priests. Not only that, it's only useful to healing priests, since all it does is make it easier for you to keep track of your Prayer of Mending (sorry mages, wrong PoM).

Still here? Good. I've tried many different mods to tell me who my PoM is on and how many charges it has left, since it is a lovely spell and I like to use it to its fullest, which means I need to know when the darn Spirit Wolves have snagged it again so I can recast it on somebody useful. I used MendWatch all throughout Burning Crusade, but it had some annoying bugs when Wrath hit and I started hunting around for something more stable and easier to read. I quickly found PoM Tracker, and it's worked like a dream for me ever since.

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Filed under: Priest, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: QBar

Every weekend, Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

It just occurred to me that I've been really focusing on bar mods in the last few Spotlights (Dominos and AutoBar, specifically). To complete a trio, today I'm going to do it again with QBar. QBar is a simple mod, with a simple goal. Its reason for being is to show you any clickable quest items that may show up in your inventory, on a movable bar.

It has the following functionality:

  • Positionable anywhere on your screen
  • Scalable
  • Can show/hide tooltips for its buttons
  • Can expand horizontally or vertically
  • Can ignore particular items if desired
  • You can bind a key to the last used quest item. This is my favorite feature; just one click and then alt-Q (or whatever binding you set) does it from there.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Quests, Features, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: AutoBar


Last time on Addon Spotlight, we looked at Dominos, my current favorite bar mod for all my spells and abilities. Of course, like any good raider, I also have bar spots for my various consumables: bandages, potions, elixirs, buff food, and so forth. But it's a pain to manually reconfigure all that every time I get a new item. Fortunately, I don't have to: AutoBar does it for me, and means I never have to hunt in my bags for a scroll or a quest item.

In short, AutoBar adds one or more bars to your screen, each full of buttons for various categories. For instance, the default "main" bar has slots for:

  • Hearthstone (and related abilities, like Death Gate or Scroll of Recall)
  • Health potions
  • Mana potions
  • Buff foods
  • Mage foods
  • Elixirs (battle and guardian)
  • Mounts
  • Tradeskills
  • Quest items
  • Trinkets

And probably some more things that I'm not remembering right now. AB shows the most recent item you've clicked for each category (in some cases) or the best item (in others), and other options in the category appear on mouse-over.

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Filed under: Features, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Dominos


Many people who don't otherwise use mods much use a bar mod, since Blizzard's default bars are quite limited. Back in the day it was Flexbar or Trinity; nowadays it's usually Bartender or Dominos (but oh, how I miss Flexbar). Dominos is the successor to Bongos, so if you used Bongos in the BC era, you'll probably be at home here, although it's missing a few features that the author found troublesome and not worth it. It's also the bar mod I use on all my characters (along with Autobar, which I'll discuss in a future Spotlight).

The goal of Dominos is to be simple to configure, yet powerful enough for most situations. It also uses the default action bars, so any bars you have set up already in Blizz's interface will port over fairly seamlessly, and things like tooltips work just fine. It also works just fine with vehicles, which are prominently featured in many Wrath quests. Most of the options are hidden away in the bars' individual configuration frames, which are accessible by right-clicking a bar while in config mode (/dom config). A bar can be made as many buttons as you want it, they can go horizontally and vertically, any size you want - all the options you'd expect from a modern bar mod.

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Filed under: Features, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Friend & Ignore Share


I play several characters often. I also like to keep track of people I pug with who play well, friends who are not in the guild, etc. The built-in friends lists works pretty well, especially now that it supports notes, but it is kept separately for each character, which makes it difficult to keep track of everybody at once. Sounds like a job for an addon!

A job for Friend & Ignore Share, to be specific. F&IS is a low-configuration, drop-in solution to my problem. After it's installed, your friends lists will automatically be synchronized between all your characters. Also, by default, your alts are all added to your friends lists for easier mailing auto-complete. Ignore lists are also synchronized, as the name suggests, although this is responsible for some "player not found" errors at log-in (players need to be online to be added to the ignore list).

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight, Alts

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