Monday, June 18, 2007

Mmm (Mage Mods & Macros)

In case you didn't know, my main toon in WoW is a female mage named Leiandra. I spend most of my WoW time on her, so I have a hard time writing mods and macros for say a warrior. That said, I've run across a couple of things that I want to highlight. (I hope I didn't lose everyone, there may be a macro or two that would help the other classes as well.)

First I'll start with a few macros that may be useful to everyone. This first one was feature on a WoW Insider article named The Creamy GUI Center: Macro Mania. They've got suggestions for general macros, and also class specific macros. Seems like there's probably a little bit of something for everyone, so feel free to head on over there. For the mage types, they suggested the following macro for polymorphing:

#showtooltip Polymorph: Turtle
/focus [button:1,harm] target
/cast [button:3, target=focus,harm] Polymorph: Turtle; [button:1] Polymorph: Turtle /stopmacro [button:1,button:3] /clearfocus [button:2]

I actually added the first line, but showing the tooltip seems to make it more finished in my opinion. Basically, this macro will polymoprh your target when you left-click the mouse on the hot-key (or press the appropriate hot key number) and set that target in memory (or "focus"). If you then middle-click that key, it will polymorph it again, and you don't even have to have it targeted. Right-clicking the hot key will clear the mob of your focus. Personally, I usually don't clear the focus, I just set it again with I polymorph the next target. If you don't have Polymorph: Turtle (don't worry, I don't either), you can set it to Polymorph: Pig or just plain Polymorph. Also, if you choose the "?" for the macro icon, it will attempt to recognize what spell your using. In this case, it will set it to the turtle polymorph.

The next suggestion is actually a combination of a mod and macros. It comes from the official forums, but I'll be darned if I can't find the post now. The post was basically the whole mage vs. warlock debate, which I am not getting into. One of the suggestions for the "decreased" damage for mages at higher level raids was that in testing mage damage at Blizzard HQ, there's no lag for them. Casts of 3 seconds always take 3 seconds. Now if you're red-barring, a cast of 3 seconds could probably take closer to 5 seconds. For sake of illustration, let's say it takes 6 seconds. Now as a mage, you're doing about 1/2 the damage since most of our spells are direct damage. With warlocks and their dots, the damage continues even through a lag may persist. Again, I'm not taking sides, just showing how this mod will help.

When you cast a spell, this is what happens: You press the button, and a message is sent to the server. After a certain amount of time, depending on your current connection speed, the server gets the message and starts casting. For illustration purposes, say it takes 0.5 seconds. After 3 seconds of casting your Improved Fireball, the server sends a message to your computer, there's another 0.5 seconds, and you can start casting again. That means that your 3 second cast has now become 4 seconds; or said another way, you're doing only 75% of the damage that you would be able to if there had been no lag. (All class can see this lag effect, just try to jump in the last milliseconds before you've finished summoning your mount. Most likely, you'll be mounted even though you canceled the summon with your jump.)

Solution: Enter Quartz. There's a lot of neat things with Quartz, but basically, it replaces your cast bar and gives you an estimate of when your spell will be finished. So, because you can't cast again until your computer gets the message that the spell is finished, you need to interrupt the cast when the bar gets just past the red mark, and then cast again. Yeah, you could jump, or slightly move, but a macro makes this so much easier.

#showtooltip Frostbolt
/cast Frostbolt

Just replace all of your spells with this macro (change spell name, of course), and now you can actually cast 2 Fireballs in about 6 seconds (as compared to the 8 seconds before). This will work for a lot of classes, but it seems to be most helpful to the mage class.

p.s. Didn't run Kara this weekend due to too many people being out of town. So, sorry there's no links to phat lewt.


DadGuy said...

I think that you've been reading too much into the mage vs warlock thing.

Having both I'd say that there are pros and cons on both sides. In single target DPS I think warlocks have the edge. multi-targetted mobs (even with seed of corruption) the mage wins hands down.

But hey, this is coming from a druid tank, so take it all with a grain of salt. =)

Leiandra said...

lol. No, I completely agree, but nonetheless, this helps increase damage. If I have a decent paladin tanking Shattered Halls, we hardly sheep anything. He/She gathers them up, and then I AoE the heck out of them. I don't think I've had a warlock even come close to me when we're going through the mobs that way.