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Posts with tag recount

Encrypted Text: My favorite rogue addons


Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the rogue class. This week, we talk about my favorite rogue addons, and how to use them to improve your WoW experience.

It's about time I wrote this guide, as I'm pretty sure I promised it all the way back in fall of 2009. My planned column posting schedule was completely upheaved with the announcement of the patch 3.3 Vanish fix (which ended up being vaporware), and so I never got around to the topic of rogue addons. Luckily for you, I've had the opportunity to work with several new addons in the meantime!

Now, I'm going to preface this guide with the disclaimer that I haven't had the chance to test every rogue mod out there, so if you have a favorite, please post it in the comments. I'm always looking for the best mods out there, and once I've found one that solves a particular problem, it can be a while before I go looking to replace them. With ICC becoming a more of a regular farm raid and less of a great unknown, I've had more free time to begin my period of self-examination before the next tier of content is released. If you're looking to add some spice to your rogue experience, try adding a few new addons to the mix!

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Filed under: Rogue, Add-Ons, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

The Queue: Son of Q


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Michael Gray will be your host today.

While Adam yesterday (rightfully) pointed out the necessity of the occasional Star Trek reference in this feature, he failed to point out its natural outgrowth. While there is always Q Continuum, there must also be the Son of Q. He goes by q, in the lower case. That leads to some funny sounding dialogue like "I will always be your soulmate, little-case-q." Or something more awkward like "I am the great and powerful little-case-q." But that's okay. For the continuum, it's all third person references. Which leads me to . . .

Transit asked . . .

"At he beginning of Forge of Souls (Horde version) Lady Sylvanas says; "The Dark Lady watches over you. Make haste!"

Who is the Dark Lady?

She could be talking about herself in the 3rd person, but I don't think so. It seems she is talking about a particular entity. I also noticed the "Dark Lady" in the phrase is capitalized, which I think is also significant.
"

I had actually wondered the same thing, once. I briefly believed that maybe this was some kind of generic dialogue, and maybe Blizzard didn't update it to be spoken by Sylvanas. Now, however, I have learned the error of my ways.

Sylvanas is The Dark Lady. She's just referring to herself in third person, as you pointed out. It might seem a little up-on-herself, but it's more that she's being regal and queenly. Imagine King Wrynn urging Alliance soldiers forward, shouting at them "Go! Your King commands it!" You wouldn't think anything particularly odd about that phrase. In this case, it just looks a little funny because The Dark Lady isn't a title we're accustomed to seeing elsewhere.

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Filed under: The Queue

Reader UI of the Week: Jake's Larger 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 I've decided to focus on helping people in need of user interface tips for smaller screen resolutions or the need to have buttons larger, as you will see in just a short time. It's kind of like Dear Abby, except with more video games and less mouthy grandmas. The Community has been great in its response to sending in your user interfaces, so keep them coming! Without further ado, let's go a user interfacin'...

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

Spiritual Guidance: Disciplined raid healing

Every Sunday Spiritual Guidance offers Holy and Discipline priests advice on how to wield the holy light and groove to the disco night. Your hostess Dawn Moore will provide the music.

I decided to take a break from gems this week to discuss a style of priest healing that is becoming popular among raiders: discipline raid healing. Though the concepts behind it are extremely simple to understand and execute, this style of play seems to have slipped under the radar of many players despite its amazing potential. Tag along with me after the jump and I'll fill you in on the basics and benefits of disc raid healing. Holy priests, I'm talking to you, too.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Fixing raiding lag

There is quite a thread going around with some ideas about how to fix raiding lag. Lag, like many cross-computer issues, is a pretty complicated thing -- there's all kinds of reasons it could be happening, from errors on your computer to errors on Blizzard's end, and all the little connections and switches in between. A certain amount of lag is unavoidable. But there are certainly some things you can do to make sure the link between your client and Blizzard's server is working at its best. This thread, which started on the EJ forums and then moved on to Livejournal, has some good tips in it, including turning off most combat logs like Recount and even Blizzard's official "Everything" log -- having to write down everything happening in game does cost some computer time as you play. Blocking addon "spam" is another way to keep things simple and clear -- while lots of useful addons help you share information between raid members, sending that info back and forth can cause problems when you're down to milliseconds of lag.

The final suggestion is to run a third-party program that's supposed to keep your latency high, but I would be leery of doing that -- a better solution if you continue to have high latency constantly, even after making the changes above, would be to go to Blizzard (and/or your Internet Service Provider, or ISP) with your issues. They have a good guide to smoothing out your connection, and many times the problem can be with your router or firewall, which is usually a quick fix.

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Filed under: Guilds, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, Hardware

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

The Daily Quest: Best in slot


We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

Filed under: Druid, Add-Ons, Jewelcrafting, Death Knight, Comics, The Daily Quest

Officers' Quarters: Hot-headed healers

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

A little healthy competition among your raiders can be a good thing. It encourages people to push to play their best, to show up completely prepared, and to gem and enchant their gear with the most effective possible options. A bit of banter can enliven your raids and ease the tension when your run is struggling. But what if your players take it too far? What if their drive for personal accomplishment becomes detrimental to your raid? This week's e-mail asks how to handle two healers -- and officers -- who are turning their personal competition into public drama.

Scott --

I'm the raid leader in a growing progression guild with some pretty hot-headed healers. While our raid healing shaman is competent and professional, I've started to suspect that the other healers (the paladins in particular) are engaging in behavior that hurts the raid and creates drama. As an example, one paladin healer in particular will overwrite the other paladin's Judgement of Light at every chance to inflate his numbers on the meters. Both of them vie for having "the biggest", whether it's mana pool, meter numbers, or SP; it's something new every week. This has also encouraged similar behavior in some of our other healers.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

The Queue: Soul man


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky will be your host today.

Yesterday Alex featured Cab Calloway blasting out Minnie the Moocher, a song that while was around for a long time was truly made epic by his performance with the Blues Brothers. And this lets me tie in perfectly to wish my brother Logan a happy graduation from high school next week. Logan and many of his friends were in their jazz band, and he often dressed up as the Blues Brothers when appropriate. And in lieu of that, today's reading music is the Blues Brothers' "Soul Man" performance from the 1978 SNL season. The good old days. 5 years before I was born.

Hokiebuddy asked...

"With the revamp of the bear and cat forms for Druids will there be any more Druid revamps in design such as the travel, swimming, or flying forms? Also will this spill over into other races and classes i.e. Warlock and Paladin mounts, Warlock minions, Shadow Priest shadow form, etc..."

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Filed under: The Queue

Possible addon business models

Ever since that new addon policy came to light, some addon devs are furious, and threatening to stop publishing their addons completely. But others are being a little more optimistic -- instead of shutting down their addons, they're trying to figure out new ways around Blizzard's rules in order to get compensated for their work. selenite on WoW LJ has one such idea: he suggests a method of "ransomware," where the creators of a mod ask for donations (on their sites, not in-game, as that's against the new policy) and set a goal before they release a new version. BRK had a good point on last week's podcast as well -- he suggested that, like the popular WoW Web Stats, some addons (Recount was one suggestion that came up) can offer information out of game rather than in-game, thus making them able to charge for it, or show advertising on it.

Now, some may say that even these types of models will still go against Blizzard's rules (in fact, the rule that says addons may not charge for distribution also hints that they may not charge for "services related", either), but at this point, we don't really know what these rules mean, since, as far as we know, Blizzard hasn't actually shut down any addons. Blizzard may be trying to say that any attempt to make money off of an addon will get it shut down in the game (a strong statement, since you'd think anyone putting time and work into an addon should get something back for it). And if they really do have issues with people who help players play the game making money off of it, what about sites like Wowhead? What about us here at WoW Insider?

At any rate, the ideas are out there. If developers really want to get something back for their work, and they have an addon or an idea that's worth paying for (keep in mind that competition is always there -- if an addon like Recount does charge to go visit another site and get DPS meters, they'll have to make sure it's worth paying that amount rather than just using a free addon), there will probably be a way for them to get compensated.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Add-Ons

Ghostcrawler reiterates the DPS hierarchy

I don't want to invoke BTPNTC again, but it's a common perception that one of the goals in class balance in Wrath has been to bring the damage various DPS specs more in line with each other. This, in turn, has raised questions like "if a feral druid does as much damage as a rogue, what's the point of the rogue?" This question is arguable, but fortunately, that lovable crustacean Ghostcrawler has laid bare the developers' goal for how the classes should be positioned relatively in terms of DPS.

Here it is:

  1. Hunters, mages, rogues, and warlocks.
  2. Everyone else.

It's important to note that the gap between 1 and 2 is meant to be quite small, and that it will probably be swallowed up by gear, player skill, and the particulars of individual encounters in most cases. As GC puts it, "If you know your class cold, I mean really know it, then there is no reason you can't be topping meters."

I think this is a good design goal. The pure classes have a slight edge, but skilled players of any class should do well. Of course, we're not quite there yet, class balance being a perennially moving target, but they're working on it.

Filed under: Raiding, Classes

Training Dummies in capital cities

If you've been exploring your capital city, you may have noticed something new. Grandmaster's Training Dummies now hang out in the cities, casually waiting for enterprising player characters to come and beat them. (I don't judge their lifestyles, I'm just reporting the facts.) If you're looking at the picture on the right, you're correct in your keen observation -- the clever training dummies even carry the flag of your opposing faction.

The dummies are level 80, obviously in preparation for Wrath's release on November 13th. We were fortunate enough to get them in the content patch, but it does lead to a few questions. What are these masochistic constructions for? What is their purpose? Do they give you anything?

Dr. Boom in Netherstorm was a staple of Hunters', Warlocks' and Mages' theorycrafting. The analysts of the communities would park themselves on a crate, and fire away at the goblin. Using AddOns likes Recount, or combat log parsers like WWS, they'd leverage the information to draw conclusions about which damage rotations and talents yielded the best results.

Target Dummies fulfill the same role, but are a little more universally accessible. (Melee had problems with Dr. Boom, since they could find themselves getting blown up by adds.) They also have benefit of not being out in the field. While safe and protected in your capital city, you can fire away until you feel confident in the data you're seeing.

There's a caveat to the dummies, however. Some spells (like Siphon Life) don't seem to give accurate results. Also, since the dummies aren't the specific bosses you'll be fighting, you're not going to get the exact same numbers as you would against the real thing. They're intended, after all, characters to practice on, not simulate the actual fights.

Edit: As some commenters have pointed out, there are level 70 and 60 dummies to be had also, in the same general area as the level 80 versions.

Filed under: Tips, Tricks, Odds and ends

Essential addons for Patch 3.0.2 [Updated x6]

Let's take a look at what addons are working for patch 3.0.2. First a simple rule taken from the UI forums post done by Kaydeethree: "Any 'Wrath beta' compatible mod will work in 3.0.2." With that said, there is a long and comprehensive listing of 3.0.2 compatible addons over on WoWWiki.

But the fun doesn't end there. The next step is obtaining all those new addons. I've compiled a large set of the essential addons and linked to at least one direct download source after the break. Each download source is either trusted beyond doubt – or tested and confirmed to be virus free.

Finally, you'll want to combine the addons into a nice looking UI. Check out our special edition of Reader UI of the Week for a look at five complete 3.0.2 compatible UIs.

We're posting this list now, and will continue to update it throughout the day. Begin your addon downloads as quickly as possible to avoid hangups later in the day when download servers become overloaded.

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Filed under: Patches, News items, Add-Ons

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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