Raider Apprentice - Addons
You ever found desktop so full of icons that you almost need to use a search engine to find the folder you need? Or your desk/working place literally hidden by mountains of papers, hole-punchers, sticky notes, staplers, folders, binders, pens and other office tools? Well, things like that can happen in WoW too, and I am an unfortunate victim of Addon addiction.
I can't raid if at least 10 addons are not monitoring various aspects of my game - raid status, deaths, heals, positioning, cooldowns, buffs & debuffs, damage output, disconnects, enrage & spell timers, adds... I need to know what's going on around me, and be able to adjust accordingly. When I am not doing stuff for Wowhead or playing, I spend some of my free time browsing random addons with the hope that I will find something I and my guild may find useful. Sometimes it is those little things that really can make or break a raid. In this blog I am going to list some of basic addons every raid should consider downloading. They are by no means mandatory, but a lot of them make the game more enjoyable improve the efficiency of the individual player.
So let's take a closer look at some of the addons (I think) every raider should at least consider getting:
Note: Many healers will choose a Unit Frames addon that allows them to see the whole raid in a small panel, and complement it with
, to allow quick single-button heals or debuff removers.
- A complete replacement for Blizzard's default unit frames, including raid frames and raid tools.
AG Unit Frames
- ag_uf is another replacement for Blizzard's default unit frames, with features similar to X-Perl, but more lightweight in my opinion. I personally have had problems with its configuration, but I hear a lot of good things about it.
AG_UF with Target Options
- Grid creates a raid frame with various options for displaying different types of debuffs on the target. It is very compact.
Configuring a status
Configuring the layout
- Dominos is a stable and easy to use lightweight addon that manages up to 10 action bars (maximum of 12 slots in each) and offers movement of default frames like the Minimap, the Casting bar and the Roll panel.
A simple setup, with ButtonFacade*
A clean install with frames and panels visible
The options menu
- Bartender4 covers, more or less, all the features of Dominos, just in a different way. 10 action bars, Roll panel, Experience/Reputation bar, etc.
is a small Addon that complements Action Bar Addons by adding different effects to the buttons. You can search for more fan-made Button Facade packs in
Deadly Boss Mods
- this addon will provide you and your raid with important information about the spells bosses cast, buff and debuff gains during some boss fights, and information about Battleground timers. It is additionally customizable to provide timers for manually added spells.
Bars in action
- BigWigs is another addon that supplies your raid with information about bosses' specific spells. It's a DBM alternative.
Noth the Plaguebringer
Boss options menu
- A threat monitor, useful for DPS, Tanks and Healers alike. It's small, easy to configure and readily provides you with information about how threatening you are towards the targeted monster. Supports 110% melee/130% ranged warnings.
Omen3 Config + Threat window
- A very detailed and thorough map addon that includes maps of zones and dungeons, boss loot, some quest information, locations of trainers and profession masters, and few nifty world map settings, like full transparency of certain areas, and a mini version of the world map, visible at all times on your screen.
Transparency 0%, Nagrand
Map selection/Location Menu - Warsong Gulch
Instance Map: Naxxramas
- An open world & instance maps atlas. Simple, easy to configure and useful. Often used with
, which provides information about boss loots, crafted items, Badge/Emblem rewards, and other like these.
Instance Map: Gundrak
- Often considered one of the most important addons for a class that can remove debuffs, Decursive provides a small window that allows quick access to debuffed party members. Paladins, Priests, Druids, Shamans and Mages will find this addon more than helpful.
Affliction example in raid
Priority and skip list
Now, out of that mess, I don't think you need all of the Addons. That'd be a disaster! Not to mention that several of the same type (Unit Frames, Action Bars) may be incompatible with each other. I generally encourage the use of: one Unit Frames, one Action Bars, one Boss Addon. Decursive if your class is supported. Omen definitely. Map Addons are not really necessary, but it helps to be able to check a boss' loot before actually going to him. Paladins may consider
for easier Blessing management, but that's about it.
Of course, there are hundreds other addons that will make your raiding and general playing experience better.
will make sure you don't dread the time when you have to pick 50 mails from the AH. Various square minimap Addons will ensure that you have the prettiest minimap in the world.
will add nice and distinguishable cooldowns to your spells, and
Elkano's Buff Bars
will put all your buffs and debuffs in a nice and organized frame. But you don't really
any of those - not really. They are nice to have, but you can certainly live through without them.
But this is what I think good for a beginner raider - a few Addons to make sure their UI doesn't become too crammed, a few addons to help them utilize their abilities to the best, and a bit of fun here and there. I think it a successful formula.
Do you download everything shiny you find, or do you like to keep it low and clean? Do you think I have missed an important beginner's Addon, and if so - what is it and why is it so important?
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