22 Mar 2010

The Crutches, They Do Nothing!

Over the last few days I’ve been raiding slightly more than usual. I’ve been back into Icecrown a couple more times, where it feels that we’re around the Festergut-Rotface level of progression. I’ve also been back to ToC10 in order to pick up more badges and test out my new UI. It’s been a pretty interesting experience, as I’ve suddenly realised a couple of things.

The first thing that struck me was how I didn’t miss my boss mods, although it feels a bit weird playing without them. I had it drummed into me after blowing up the raid on Baron Geddon in Molten Core that I needed to download CT RaidAssist and pay attention to the pings. As I progressed through content, I moved to BigWigs then DeadlyBossMods, but I’ve always had something installed. I thought that it was one of those essentials, like raidframes.

Back in the day of Baron Geddon, you needed the boss mods. The debuff was a subtle effect, so unless you were watching out for it the first thing you’d know about it would be when everyone yells at you on Vent. Nowadays it’s like a giant Christmas bauble has landed on your head, making it blatantly obvious that Something is Wrong. Even The Bad is more blatant now – Blizzard famously changed the flooring in the Koralon encounter to make the flames easier to see.

As a mage it’s even easier – you don’t need to watch for when the boss is doing his Super Special Ability as he’ll usually shout it to make it blatantly obvious. The XT-001 fight is a typical example – you have plenty of time to prepare for the heart to drop, pop your trinkets and nuke your face off. The only time I was missing things slightly was during the Lord Jaraxxus Fight, and that’s only because I was missing out on some great spellsteals.

I know it’s different for healers. When I’m on my priest I like to pre-empt the nasty AOE ith a precast AoE heal. I’m not doubting that it’s different for other classes as well, who either struggle to see The Bad from their perspective, or need to track debuff stacks etc. But even though I’ll probably get round to reinstalling DeadlyBossMods, I don’t think I’ll rely on it much unless the fights change drastically later in Icecrown.

The other thing that rebuilding my UI has brought out is this incessant need in me to tessellate everything. The action bars must be square, which must line up with Recount and Omen. Everything must be the same colour, and have the same style, and fit together.

And there must be NO GAPS

Which causes a problem when the minimap is round, but I want it in the bottom corner with my other stuff. I could make it square to fit neatly, but then it doesn’t look all shiny. But with it being round there are gaps, which wastes space, which drives me nuts. Still, I’ll relax. I’ll go and flick through the Warcraft Ikea Catalogue that is Curse Gaming’s addon site, and find something that works and fits.

Finally, I’ve promised that if I ever get the Argent Resolve on my priest, I’ll race-change him to Gnome as soon as Cataclysm launches. People will hate me for it.

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7 Responses to The Crutches, They Do Nothing!

  1. Spolli says:

    You can get an addon that makes the minimap square! I’ve seen it! In pictures of other peoples’ UIs!

  2. Poneria says:

    For the minimap, you can get something like Chinchilla, which’ll let you make it mostly circle with a square corner in one corner. Though I prefer Sexymap & keep it square, and haven’t tried to see if Sexymap will do that 1 square corner thing.

    I like boss mods for things like Putricide where I might have fifty million things to be watching out for (Goo, puddle, Goo, ooze, Goo, other ooze, Goo, oh shit third phase and I’m in a bad spot, etc.) But I try to limit my screenspace for bossmods to sounds and maybe the upcoming-in-10-s-or-less boss abilities. Anything not occurring either right now or within 5s of now, I don’t need on my screen.

  3. Gazimoff says:

    I’m mostly using SexyMap at the moment. I know it can do square modes but they just look so ugly! I might have a look and see what I can do, but it might be that I end up customising it completely.

    Cimpletely agree with you about bossmods that remind you of things you need to be aware of, and there are some ICC fights that benefit from it. The standard ToC fights seem to be fine without it though, from what I’ve seen.

  4. Tarinae says:

    I feel that as a healer, I sometimes get tunnel vision and DBM saves my tooshie. That probably isn’t healthy (and doesn’t always happen) but as long as everyone is alive at the end, I can live with it. 0:)

  5. Jim says:

    I use an nice lightweight addon called pMinimap for a nice square map. You can see it in my UI screenshot: http://tinyurl.com/yjslhfm

  6. Gazimoff says:

    @Tarinae

    I know what you mean. I usually drag Grid close to the centre of the screen just so I can focus on both avoiding The Bad and keeping people healed. When I’m on my Mage it’s different – my rotation is memorised and everything’s hotkeyed, so it’s much easier to manage.

    @Jim – I keep thinking of addons like that and Chinchilla like Ponia mentioned. Sexymap will do the same as well. It’s just that I want it to fit *and* look sexy, and that’s not happening so far :)

  7. Vrykerion says:

    I think the first time I noticed the utter lack of needing a boss mod was in Karazhan. Went the entire night with nothing but paying attention to what the bosses were saying an a little extra looking around and everything went great.

    I think that was the first time I really appreciated Blizzard’s game design. The attention to how those fights were designed that with a little experience you knew exactly what was going on without any outside help (even Voice Chat). Granted, I was just DPS back then, but in Wrath even as a healer it’s easier than back in Vanilla.