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Posts with tag damage-meters

Officers' Quarters: The raid-aholic

Fighting the paragons
Every Monday, Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership. He is the author of The Guild Leader's Handbook.

In this week's email, a raid leader has grave concerns about his guild leader, who puts personal performance and volume of raiding above the good of the guild.

Hi Scott

I'm a co-raid leader of a fairly successful raid team. Our guild leader describes himself as a raid-a-holic. It was something we used to tease him about but I'm now concerned it's becoming a problem.

He has never taken his turn sitting out on standby like the rest of us. He'll only ever accept being put on standby if it's farm night, and he doesn't need gear. My co-raid leader and I try and be absolutely fair on the confirms. When the GL was our top dps, it was an easy excuse to take him often, and then we didn't have to rock the boat.

Recently for the first time ever we standbyed him on progress night. That night there was just no other option unless we wanted to be grossly unfair and that was just a step too far. So we were fair and we standbyed him. As soon as he saw the calendar he went mad and started posting in /g, in /o, on battle tag status, on his twitter account which doubles as the guilds (where he posts all our kill videos), that he hoped we wiped all night, as the kill wouldn't count if he wasn't there.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Blood Pact: The importance of heroic Spine

Blood Pact The importance of heroic Spine MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill, Savior of Azeroth, revisits some old patch 4.3 raid fight that everyone might have forgotten about and reflects on the insights into DPS it gave her.

Heroic Spine of Deathwing, 25man: I hated this fight with a passion.

At first I hated it because I could not possibly contribute as my favorite spec affliction and call it even with the rest of my guild's raid. I could pass by on normal, blaming my lack of burst for my low-metered results, but that wasn't going to cut it on heroic.

Then I started to hate the fight as I struggled to squeeze out every last drop of damage I had in me, even min-maxing my offspec demonology to progress with. Warlock hell, they called it. What a lockblock! My anger started to extend to things outside of WoW, emotionally and physically, because I was so frustrated with my apparent failure to kick some Destroyer derriere.

But the fight really opened up a lot of the finer points of DPSing an encounter. Heroic Spine reminded me that the fight isn't all about the end DPS number when the combat logs stop flowing.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: Do you run damage meters?

I don't usually run damage meters. I had one for a long time when I wrote about cats and moonkin for Shifting Perspectives, but after going full-time to bears and trees, I uninstalled mine and never looked back. Most of the time I just didn't want to know how much damage or healing someone in a group or raid was doing, and particularly for PUGs, it felt like overkill. As my guildies always posted the night's raid data to World of Logs, I didn't want the distraction of trying to own the meters as a healer, and I sure didn't need the extra lag that having Recount running on my system always seemed to cause.

I reinstalled Recount after the Vengeance changes in patch 4.3 because I was curious about how much damage it was adding to 5-man tanking (answer: a lot), and then again to see the damage differential between PvE and high-end PvP gear. Afterwards, I just never got around to uninstalling it. If I'm more than 50% of the group's damage as a tank, it's generally best not to stress groups by asking if they want damage-dependent achievements, and a few pulls into Zul'Aman, I'll have a good idea of whether aggressive pulling for a bear run is likely to pay off. Spamming the meters doesn't help anyone, but if you're just using it to inform rather than dictate the play experience, then I'll admit it has its uses.

Do you use damage meters? Why? And what's the best use -- and the worst abuse -- of them that you've seen?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Reader UI of the Week: Ring in the new year with something basic

Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

We're going to start the new year off with a simple setup from Emandiputs from the Stormscale realm. Emandiputs is a self-described long-time WoW Insider fan -- and since this is the first Reader UI of the Week of 2012 and my 100th Reader UI of the Week column, I figured I would give the floor to a veteran of the site. So thank you in advance for the submission and the screenshots, Emandiputs.

And thank you all for coming along with me on this journey. I didn't really know how long I would be writing for WoW Insider when I joined on. One hundred Reader UI of the Week columns as well as a host of other content later has really hit me today as a substantial thing. Thank you all for reading and letting me get to do this awesome thing. I appreciate it more than you could ever know.

Let's get down to business, then. What we've got here is Emandiput's crack at another user interface after a new computer purchase and a trip back to the world of Azeroth. I cannot tell you how much I recommend trying to come up with a whole new UI on a new system. You'll feel fresh and clean and have that happy feeling when everything fits the way you want it to. An old UI from an old computer can sometimes leave behind a weird taste in your mouth. Something just isn't right, you know? It happens for me, at least.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Arcane Brilliance: Why I hate DPS meters

It's time again for Arcane Brilliance, the weekly mage column that used this boring screenshot of a damage meter graph for one reason and one reason only: Arcane Brilliance needs more of your pictures! There are still some languishing in Arcane Brilliance's email folder, for use in future columns, but not nearly enough. The strong initial outpouring of excellent screenshots has now petered out, and Arcane Brilliance would like to humbly request more. Send your pics to, and see this column for the rules.

The comments section of last week's column on mage mistakes was an absolute treasure trove. It was full of wisdom, good advice, relevant in-game experiences, and the occasional trolling warlock (always welcome... we love it when the fireball-fodder comes to us... speeds the whole process up). But one comment stood out to me, so much so that I felt compelled to write an entire column about its topic. It's far too long to simply reprint here, and so I highly encourage going to the comment itself and reading it. There's actually another by the same commenter later on that is just as awesome. In fact, I will reprint one of the paragraphs from that second comment, because it pretty much encapsulates what I want to discuss this week.

Sarabande wrote:

Please don't remark on low DPS or complaining that DPS is barely above the tank's (esp. if tank is doing pretty high dmg) or constantly spam Recount in group, if everything is dying in a timely manner. This encourages the atmosphere of competition and pressures DPS into concentrating only on the numbers. If there is some kind of timer (such as HoR, VH, etc) which the DPS is not able to meet, that's a whole different thing. In fact if you happen to notice some DPS being considerate by holding back on purpose (even though most likely they want to be blowing stuff up, shooting stuff, stabbing things to death) and it's really helping, you might say something positive. That might encourage that behavior further and let the other know that that's something they might want to do as well.

This week's topic: DPS meters, and why I wish they'd just go away.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

In defense of ignorance

Friends, gamers, Earthicans -- lend me your ears.

One of the things that has increasingly struck me while reading peoples' accounts of the new LFG system is the frequency with which people cite getting kicked from groups due to a low gear scores, or scathing comments from other players on the extent to which they are being "carried" after damage meters are posted. Now, while I don't believe that this is an overwhelmingly common practice (most players have had positive experiences with the dungeon finder, and I'm one of them), it's still a problem. People have complained since the beginning of WoW about damage meters and the jerks who spam them, and we've all seen our fair share of the unhappiness wrought by the misuse of GearScore, but this is different. At no point in WoW's history have so many players who don't know each other from Adam been tossed into relatively intimate 5-man situations with the total freedom to be angels or asshats to each other (and, speaking of the Adam we do know, even he's given up and started to expect some bad play in his PuGs).

I am about to propose what I know is a radical departure from the standard gamer practice of reducing someone else's total worth to a number that, ideally, is lower than yours:

Don't bother.

You're happier not knowing.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances

Dungeon Finder tricks and tips

When we last talked about this on the podcast, I said we'd basically have to wait and see how it all worked, but now that players have had their hands on the Dungeon Finder out on the live realms for a while, they're learning a few more tricks and tips about how to use it. As Rohan brings up over on the WoW Ladies LJ, it's easy enough to keep a good player once you've found them through the system: as long as none of you drop group once you're done with an instance, you can go back in and run as many as you want. Unfortunately, you can't friend them yet (hopefully that will show up whenever functionality does), but the comments on that post point out that if you both sign up for an unpopular instance at the same time, chances are good you'll end up in the same group together (of course, that requires coordination, but maybe you can set up a time out of game).

More tips and tricks for the new system after the break.

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Filed under: Tips, Tricks, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Instances, Wrath of the Lich King

WoW Rookie: What's my DPS?

New around here? WoW Rookie points WoW's newest players to the basics of a good start in the World of Warcraft. Send us a note to suggest a WoW Rookie topic, and be sure to visit's WoW Rookie Guide for links to all our tips, tricks and how-to's.

You're level 80 now, you've picked up a few sweet upgrades from five-mans and heroics, and you're ready to try a PuG into Naxx. You've found a group that's looking for members, but you're not quite sure how to answer the raid leader's demand: "What's your DPS?" The best way to figure out what your raid DPS, of course, is to measure it while you're raiding – but if you haven't started raiding yet, you can't really do that, can you?

The first thing you'll need in order to figure out what kind of DPS (damage per second) you're capable of putting out is an add-on that keeps track of your performance. Recount is popular and widely acknowledged as a fairly accurate tool. There are plenty of alternatives on all the major add-on sites. Select and install the DPS meter that appeals to you.

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Filed under: Tips, How-tos, Features, Raiding, Bosses, WoW Rookie

Tips on using Recount for tanks and others

Just in case you missed this excellent post about how to use Recount to its full potential (we also snuck it in our Daily Quest column a little while back), it's definitely worth a look. Most players just use Recount to check their own damage numbers, but as 4 Haelz points out, there's definitely a lot more to it than just that. Not only can it be used to examine overall output on fights and instances, but you can use it as a tool to monitor what kinds of spells are producing the most for you, and how your damage or healing output changes over time. You can also have it track who you've healed the most, or which targets you've really gone to town on, and you can then make adjustments to your play style from there.

Now, Honor's Code has another great post about the addon, this one specifically for tanks. Recount will actually let you bring up a "Death Report" feature that will allow you, as a tank, to suss out exactly what went wrong on that last wipe, whether it was something you were late on, or whether your teammates should have done something that they didn't. You can even broadcast that Death Report, so you can show the person at fault (of course you have to be tactful with this -- you have to make sure the person you're "correcting" understands that you're just trying to get better, not attacking them) exactly what happened and when.

Recount is such an excellent addon, and so many of us just use the top level functions of watching the meters (sometimes to the point where it isn't helpful at all). But used in the right way, Recount provides a treasure trove of information on what you've done during a boss fight, and how you can make yourself and the rest of your raid even better.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Odds and ends, Add-Ons, Raiding, Bosses

Why healing meters suck

Matticus also has a guest blogger on his site (I posted about Phaelia's guest blogger earlier today), and he's got a great post up too, about healing meters and why they just aren't helpful to anyone. Damage meters are well known to be disliked by many players -- while they can often show some DPSers where they fit in the general rankings, they're usually still not a great indicator of performance (and when DPS gets really involved in beating the meters, then things go bad quickly).

But healing meters are even worse. Given all of the crazy mechanics in the game (from armor and self-heals to situational abilities and AoE heals), they are very rarely (if ever) a valid interpretation of who's doing the healing and whether they're doing it right or wrong. And as guest blogger Ulkesshern says, more healing doesn't make a better healer anyway -- overhealing and spamming big heals do not mean you're a good healer, though they may get you higher on the healing meters.

There is one good word for healing meters, and that's to give the healer an ego boost after you show off the DPS meters at the end of the instance (usually they're on the bottom of DPS, and so when you switch over to healing, they're happy to be back on top again). But Ulkesshern makes a good point: for anything worth tabulating or tracking, healing meters are not to be trusted or followed.

Filed under: Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Raiding, Bosses, Buffs

Hybrid Theory: Performance Assessment

Last week we discussed the fact that raw DPS is not a good indicator of the strength of a hybrid. The quality of a hybrid, or a person that plays a hybrid, will not easily be seen by looking at traditional damage and/or healing meters the same way you would for 'pure' classes.

Before I go on, I'd like to reiterate my disclaimer on this topic: Just because your class or spec is not expected to top damage meters, that does not mean you should become complacent about your DPS or Healing effectivenessity(use it, love it) in a raid. You should always strive to be a better player and find ways to improve yourself. If you think you've hit the ceiling of what you can accomplish, work harder to break through it.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Bosses, Hybrid Theory

Forum post of the day: Dreadful DPS declarations

The biggest frustration in a MMORPG is probably getting ganked at most inopportune moments. The next biggest aggravation has got to be playing with pick-up-groups. Sometimes we get lucky in choosing random players to instance with, but we've all got horror stories of out worst experiences with PUGs.

Ihaveaplan of Altarac Mountains started a thread for players to list 200 things you don't want to hear from your DPS. The original poster's initial complaint was the Warlock who left the group because the tank was fighting multiple mobs. Some other gems from this thread include:

  • Bizzerk of Laughing Skull, "Does anyone have damage meters?"
  • Zazzi of Kirin Tor, "Do any of you have another weapon? My sword broke."
  • Groxikor of Daggerspine, "I'm pretty good with bandages, can I heal?"
  • Misada of Dark Iron, "Hey guys, can someone resummon me, had to hearth to repair my gear."
  • Ovelita of Ner'zhul, "We don't need a healer. We have a shadow priest."

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Classes, Forums

AddOn Spotlight: Recount

Damage meters in World of Warcraft can be both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, they can give you detailed information about incoming and outgoing damage in order to help you decide on the best gear, the best talents, and the best spell or ability rotations to get the most out of your character. On the other hand, their list format can turn instance groups into a competitive game where the person at the top "wins" -- a dangerous thing when a DPS chart can't tell you anything about threat or deaths, nor utility abilities such as crowd control or dispels. However, I always like having Recount -- not only because it collects a metric ton of data about you and anyone you group with -- but because the information it tracks can help put DPS in the broader perspective.

To the right you see Recount's main window. Right now it only lists two items -- my Rogue alt and the elemental pet of someone I was grouped with before taking this shot -- but in a large group there will be a line item for every group member and pet, showing total damage, DPS, and what percentage of the group's overall damage they've done. If you mouse over anyone on the list, you will see the pop-up to the right, listing the top three attacks, top three attacked, and the damage done to each.

But Recount goes in to much more depth than this. Want to know the wealth of information that awaits you? Keep reading!

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

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