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Addon Spotlight Alternatives: Cooldown bar timers

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Each week, WoW Insider's Mathew McCurley 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.

The Addon Spotlight Alternatives series continues with a look at cooldowns, timers, bars, and anything falling into the category of timing. Timing is a crucial factor in many of World of Warcraft's angles. You've got DPS rotations that can be made or broken based on the time between skill use. You've got tanks making split-second decisions on ability usage and timing -- what if you're only a few seconds away from a Shield Wall, but heroic Nefarian is about to use his thunder electro-whatever? Yeah, you have better been timing those cooldowns better, buddy.

Cooldown and skill timing management are some of the game systems baked into the game to separate the better from the best, the true test for the most hardcore WoW players out there. People are still tackling Dragon Soul heroic content and succeeding because of good timing -- ask anyone about the gruesome slog that the Madness of Deathwing fight is on heroic. I did. I asked Rossi. He growled at me.

We've established that timing is important, right? Good. Addons can greatly help you with the timing and cooldown tracking of your abilities because the game does a pretty poor job of it. That's not Blizzard's fault, either -- tracking your cooldowns in such an elaborate and specific way is not exactly what the game is designed to showcase to every player. This is all information we are willingly taking on in excess from what Blizzard is providing.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Slackers, beware! RSC is on to you

Each week, WoW Insider's Mathew McCurley 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.

Are you ready to pull? The ready check says you've got the green light, people look ready, and your current raid boss stands in front of you, cruising for a bruising every moment you wait before initiating the fight. Stop. Is everyone flasked? Did everyone eat the feast? Who pre-potted on a progression encounter? Has someone dropped a repair bot that was not noticed? Are you sure that you're ready to pull?

There is little more annoying than raiders giving half their effort to the team effort, 10- or 25-man raiding. It's game time, people! Stop slacking! We've got bosses to kick in the loot bags and gear to grab. Maybe with a little help from RaidSlackCheck, you can whip your cadre of nerds into shape and get these fights down at a quicker pace.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Automate your life with some automatic addons

Each week, WoW Insider's Mathew McCurley 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.

Face it -- we're lazy. Lazy, lazy, lazy. We've been living in a world of awesome addons, quality of life improvements, and a streamlined interface for so long that we might have forgotten how awful things really are in the outside world of user interfaces. While you read this edition of Addon Spotlight, remember how bad things were back in the day, with lack of options and the rigid UI schemes. After you're done with that, come back here for addons that will do a bunch of stuff for you, no questions asked.

This week's Addon Spotlight is all about addons with Auto in the title (or at least in concept), because I love addons that take care of menial tasks for me. Auto-addons also have some cool functionality that exists outside of the menial task range, but we'll get to that. Some of the auto stuff is pretty cool and might even do something (automatically, of course) that you never thought you needed before.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Spiritual Guidance: How to become a better priest, starting with your UI

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore covers healing for discipline and holy priests, while her archenemy Fox Van Allen spawn camps poor, defenseless gnomes. Dawn also writes for LearnToRaid.com, produces the Circle of Healing Podcast, and plays white knight to those loveable gnomes.

When I first started raiding a few years ago, I was an obnoxiously overconfident priest determined to prove to the world that I was the best discipline priest who ever lived. Fast forward two years, and I'm still trying to get comfortable with the reality check that resulted from meeting amazing priests like Kinaesthesia or Kras. I realized I wasn't competitive enough, dedicated enough, and that my growing ability to self-critique every tiny aspect of my play was holding back me back more than it was pushing me forward. How I wish I could be that overconfident idiot again.

On the bright side, the whole thing has left me quite good at helping other priests identify what they need to do to get to the next stage of their development as players (without becoming overly paranoid from self-awareness). So when I recently met someone who was up against a massive wall in his development, I decided I ought to tap into that ability in a more formal way by writing an article about it.

Bob (we're going to call him Bob) wrote me and described various problems he was having as a healer, explaining that raid damage was unmanageable and that he couldn't keep up. I thought for a while he might have been going OOM, but as we talked more and more, I realized certain things he said just didn't making sense. Eventually, I asked him for a picture of his UI and was immediately horrified by what he sent me.

Thus today, we're going to talk about addons and setting up your first healing priest UI.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Reader UI of the Week: NirayĆ”'s UI


Each week WoW.com brings you a fresh look at reader submitted UIs. Have a screenshot of your UI you want to submit? Send your screenshots, along with info on what mods you're using, to readerui@wow.com.

This week on Reader UI of the Week, you, my adoring fanbase, get to indulge my minimalist side for one more week before I get to some quirky user interfaces. Nirayá of Proudmoore sent in this fantastic mage user interface that blew my mind, so I thought I would share. Sweet Baby Titans, is that ONE action bar? Let's find out.

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

Forte Gaming goes the way of the Alamo

Forte Gaming, one of the top guilds in World of Warcraft and the world's first to kill Anetheron, disbanded over the weekend. Their web page cites recruitment woes, long delays between content releases, and continually postponed raid times as reasons for the fall. "For many it has felt like a slowly sinking ship for some time and now it's over," says the guild's last post.

Forte was consistently ranked in the top two or three guilds in worldwide rankings and stayed in a tight race with Nihilum for game firsts, snagging no less than nine legendary Warglaives from Illidan in the Black Temple. In their three-year reign, they changed realms three times. Although the raiding arm of the guild (EU Boulderfist-A) will no longer exist, they will still maintain a more casual form of the guild on their previous server (A-Kazzak-EU).

Filed under: Guilds, News items, Raiding

Four endgame guilds on WoW Radio today


Our friend Totalbiscuit of WoW Radio sends word to remind us that today at 2 pm EST (in just about an hour and a half from now), he'll be hosting a roundtable with members of Nihilum, Death and Taxes, Forte and Method-- in other words, pretty much every endgame guild that matters. I guess he could probably go for Curse as well, but "Four Horsemen" just sounds better.

On the menu is supposed to be "all aspects of the endgame," so it'll be interesting to see what gets talked about. Expect to hear about what they thought of the Black Temple and the attunements being lifted from the Eye and SSC, and TB would probably be remiss if he didn't ask what they think is coming next (even though no one but Blizzard has anything but speculation about that right now, probably until Blizzcon). But nevertheless, WoW Radio always does a good interview, and this should be a good listen for sure.

Filed under: Podcasting, Guilds, Odds and ends, Instances, Interviews

Warglaive of Azzinoth dropped

Previously thought to be a mere rumor, or possibly used in the Illidan fight (like the many legendaries used in the Kael'thas fight), Forte (A-Kazzak-EU) have looted the first drop of the (right) Warglaive of Azzinoth, from their world-third kill of Illidan. Here's the lowdown on the weapon:
  • Name: Warglaive of Azzinoth
  • Type: Legendary main-hand sword
  • Damage/Speed: 214–398/2.80 (109.3 dps)
  • Abilities:
    • +22 Agility
    • +22 Stamina
    • Classes: Warrior, Rogue
    • Equip: improves hit rating by 21
    • Equip: improves attack power by 44
  • Set: The Twin Blades of Azzinoth
    • (2) Set: Your melee attacks have a chance to increase your haste rating by 450 for 10 sec.
    • (2) Set: Increases your attack power by 200 when fighting Demons
It has an ilvl of 156, and sells for (apparently) 24.3g. The other weapon in the set is also called the Warglaive of Azzinoth, and you can see its details here. It's a safe bet that it drops from Illidan as well. This is, to my knowledge, the first take-away legendary anyone's gotten in BC. The Twin Blades of Azzinoth are, of course, Illidan's own weapons.

[via MMO-Gaming]

Filed under: Items, Guilds, Raiding

Curse, Forte jump in to pick up a world first each

The world first kills continue. First, Nihilum brought their PTR skillz out to the live servers, and rocked four bosses in one night. Then, they dropped three more just for fun. And now, other guilds are getting in on the action.

Curse reports that Forte from EU Kazzak took out Anetheron in Mount Hyjal on Saturday evening, winning them the world first on that one. Then, on Sunday, Nilhilum (on EU Magtheridon) and Curse (on EU Vek-nilash) both headed into Hyjal, and downed Anetheron and Kaz'rogal-- and this time, Curse picked up the world first on Kaz.

MMO Champion has more, including deets on all the kills (and the fact that Curse also picked up Supremus and High Warlord Naj'entus in the Black Temple-- with only 22 players in the raid!), and screenshots for every kill. So grats to Curse, Forte and especially Nihilum on all their achievements this weekend.

What does all this mean for us casual players? While usually a world first kill means not much more than a tip of the hat, so many kills like this in one weekend might be a sign that Blizzard is getting serious about making the endgame more friendly to casual players. If these hardcore guilds can burn through this content so quickly, it's probably not long before we see more casual guilds moving up the ladder behind them, right?

Filed under: Guilds, Blizzard, News items, Raiding, Bosses

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