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Posts with tag lightheaded

Addon Spotlight: Loremaster addons

Addon Spotlight 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.

Happy Thursday, addon nerds. I hope your week is going as splendidly as mine is. Why is my week going splendidly, you ask? I decided to begin the Loremaster achievement process on my new warrior in preparation for Cataclysm. Potentially, only a few more months remain until the world goes kaboom, and I'd like to have that title ready to roll -- which, conveniently, brings me to the topic of this week's Addon Spotlight.

This week, Addon Spotlight brings you the core collection of addons that make Loremaster less of a giant pain in the butt. For a comprehensive Loremaster strategy, I recommend, nay, compel you, to read Lisa Poisso's excellent Loremaster rookie article. I am here to give you all the information on the addons that make this achievement a snap. Let's read some quest text together! Awww, yeah!

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Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight

Patch 3.3 PTR: New UI function lists completed quests


Over on the WoW LJ community, poster Honem has pointed out something that made me sort of squeal with glee when I first read it: The latest PTR build includes a couple very interesting new functions, as reported by official forum MVP Iriel:
  • NEW - QueryQuestsCompleted() requests that the server send the client a list of completed quest ids. Once the list is received the QUEST_QUERY_COMPLETE event is fired. (There is a limit on how frequently this can be called)
  • NEW - tbl = GetQuestsCompleted([tbl]) populates a table (creating one if necessary) with the ids of completed quests.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Quests, Achievements

Gaming without Guides

Is WoW really player friendly? Tobold doesn't seem to think so. Says he, there's a lot of things that it doesn't tell you or you can miss the first time around, such as spending talent points, and that at the end game, he constantly has to check outside sites to figure out what he needs to grind to get certain drops and recipes. WoW does things better than most other MMORPGs, he says, but it is far from perfect.

But, me, I'm not sure he has it quite right.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends

Addon Spotlight: QuestHelper

We love quests, but they can be excessively frustrating sometimes. Usually they annoy you most when they make you wander all over, back and forth, without seeming to accomplish things efficiently. The fastest levelers will tell you to try to "stack quests," or do all the quests in a small area first, then gradually move around the map to other areas. But often the best way to do this isn't clear -- you may not even know exactly which area a quest is asking you to go to.

Addons to the rescue! First, there was LightHeaded: an in-game database of comments from Wowhead.com that could help you when you get confused. Now, there's QuestHelper: an in-game guide which can tell you which direction to go, what to do, and what order to do everything in, all before you even get confused in the first place. QuestHelper isn't always right -- you still have to use your own brain, for sure -- but using this addon you'll be much less likely to make silly mistakes in your questing that slow you down and waste your time.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Quests, AddOn Spotlight, Leveling, Guides

AddOns for the beginning player

There isn't a web site on the planet that loves it's readers more than WoW Insider does. So when Brenda from Florida wrote to us and told us how much she loved World of Warcraft, and asked us for opinions on what "essential" add-ons she would need to get started, there was no choice but to respond and offer up this recap of addons for beginning players.

There are hundreds of add-ons out there, and as your journey progresses through the game you will find new ones you like. This is just, as Baloo from The Jungle Book would say, the simple bear bare necessities.

Lightheaded - Since they inflated the experience benefit in the last patch, using Lightheaded to quest brings experience so quickly it will make your head spin. Lightheaded adds quest information from the comments on the Wowhead.com database site to your quest log. All the information you would have to tab-out for is at your fingertips. I heartily recommend using Doublewide in concert with Lightheaded, which will put your quest log in two panes instead of one to make it fit more easily on the screen. It's like peanut butter and chocolate, two great tastes that go great together. If you want to learn more about Lightheaded check out this awesome article (with accompanying awesome screenshot) from our own David Bowers.

Cartographer - You need Cartographer. Cartographer is essentially "the" map add-on as far as I'm concerned, You'll find all the great features of Cartographer on the page I linked, but the most important Cartographer feature to a new player (who uses Lightheaded) is that when you click a set of coordinates in Lightheaded, it will show you a floating arrow on your screen that points the way to your destination. (As a free tip, I will also mention that you can ditch the arrow and clear all waypoints by typing /noway. Yes, I know you can do it with the mouse, but... I'm one of those weird keyboard people.)

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Guides, WoW Rookie

Addon Spotlight: QuestsFu

In previous weeks we've looked at Lightheaded, which helps you understand how to do your quests, and Fubar, which can present all sorts of information concisely. Today's addon is a Fubar plugin that can work with Lightheaded to show you everything you need to know about your quests without having to click a lot of buttons or obscure your screen with your entire quest log.

QuestsFu presents you with a handy quest list in two ways. First of all, you can hover over its space on your Fubar and it'll give you a collapsable list of all the quests you're working on in a tooltip. In addition, you can have QuestsFu put up its own little quest tracker to replace Blizzard's standard tracker. The advantage to either of these color-coded quest lists is that you can just click on any of the quests themselves to open up a little window with all the quest information in it (pictured on the right). This is great for when you're in the middle of a quest and you don't want to stop moving, but you still forgot where exactly you were supposed to go or what the quest rewards are.

If you have Lightheaded installed too, then you can arrange an additional Lightheaded comments popup on the other side of your screen, and get hints about your quest without opening the big old quest log.

There are other quest managers out there, but this is my favorite because it feels so light weight, looks so attractive, works together with other addons so nicely, and also has such nice features, above and beyond what I've already mentioned:
  • Edit the questlog on the fly, adding or removing quests with ease.
  • Display quest levels, difficulty, zones, and objectives clearly.
  • Put objective info into monster and item tooltips
  • Show the quest level before you accept the quest
  • Show other party members' completion of quest objectives (if they have the addon too)
  • Optionally (I have this turned off) notify party members in /p chat when you complete a quest.
Check out QuestsFu at WoW Interface.

Filed under: Add-Ons, Quests, AddOn Spotlight

Addon Spotlight: Lightheaded (and DoubleWide)

Quests are a pain sometimes. You may already know that database sites like wowhead.com can help, since players reliably contribute their wisdom about the best way to solve quests there. The comments these players left have helped me many times when I knew that a certain series of quests might be hard and wanted to make a plan for it before logging in.

But after I've already started playing, I typically don't like to bother with external programs and websites. To illustrate, consider the following hypothetical situation: you're in the middle of a quest you thought would be simple and those Disgusting Whosamawidgets simply refuse to drop the required Sticky Yellow Fluid. You've been wandering around for an hour killing (and getting killed by) these horrid creatures, and you feel stopping to open up your web browser and check Wowhead would only add to your frustration. Finally you call out in desperate all-caps leetspeak on the general channel, only to be thoroughly ignored! Then finally one wise and tender-hearted player informs you that were actually supposed to be killing the Grotesque Whosamawidgets just next door, not the Disgusting ones. You thank her, of course, but in your gut you're still feeling dumb and regretting having wasted so much time and energy.

It's enough to make you feel lightheaded indeed! Thankfully that's where Cladhaire comes to the rescue with his addon designed to bring those helpful sorts of people and their comments on Wowhead right into the game for you. Lightheaded (the addon) opens up just to the right of your questlog and shows whatever wowhead's commenters have to say about the quest you click on. It only loads that portion of the quest comment database your quest is in, too. This helps to save on memory usage, save on trips to a website, and also save on massive frustration all in one lovely addon.

And... on a related note, consider using DoubleWide (shown above, working with Lightheaded) to make the questlog into two panels instead of one. This makes quests and quest lists so much easier to read, Blizzard really should incorporate it into the standard interface.

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

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