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Addon Spotlight: Healbot Continued part I

Sean Forsgren

For many, the role of the Healer is something to be avoided all together. For the few, however, healing is a meaningful, rewarding and challenging job, albeit an often-thankless one. Being a healer also tends to make one a popular player. This popularity can wane at higher levels if you don't pick up on a crucial principle: your job is more than just healing. Depending on your class, you will have other duties that include keeping buffs on your companions, de-cursing them, stepping in front of the mage if he or she draws aggro and the list goes on. Addons are one way that the aspiring healer can shift some focus towards his or her other duties. By taking some of the busy work out of casting healing spells, buffs and keeping the party free of curses, poisons and/or diseases, programs like Healbot Continued can take you from being a good healer to being a stellar and indispensable member of any group.

Healbot Continued uses the embedded Lua scripting language to reconfigure information vital to healers. This retrofitting presents an easily manageable interface that helps you maintain a greater degree of situational awareness. For many of you wondering how this works, it's simply a matter of our program, Healbot Continued in this case, listening to the World of Warcraft client for events. In combat, information is literally flying back and forth between the player (client side) and the game server (server side). Healbot Continued simply listens in and picks out information it wants. This is true of almost all addons, which sift through event information for a variety of purposes. Healbot Continued is easily one of the more powerful addons around, as it goes above and beyond what is normally expected of healing addons.

The developer of this add-on, David Marshall, took what was a good add-on and has created what can be arguably called a healer's best friend. Through his efforts, David has taken the original Healbot and evolved it into a must-have. You may be wondering what makes this add-on a cut above the rest, so here is a list of what Healbot Continued can do for you.
  • HealBot allows for 20 key mouse combinations to cast any beneficial spells.
  • HealBot allows for 20 key mouse combinations to cast on disabled bars.
  • Any usable item can be added to all combos.
  • Any existing macro can be added to all combos.
  • Target, Focus and Assist can be added to all combos
  • HealBot can track and display who has aggro
  • HealBot can be used for decursive functions
  • HealBot can be used for monitoring buffs and buffing
  • HealBot's appearance can be configured and preferred appearances can be saved as skins.
  • HealBot can show self/party/tanks/checked targets/extras/pets in a raid, extras can be filtered and sorted.
  • Multiple HealBots in a party/raid sync incoming heals.
  • HealBot will accurately range check at all times for spells and items.
  • HealBot has a built in res monitor
  • HealBot has a SmartCast out of combat option, this will cast a spell in the following order..
    1. res
    2. decurse
    3. buff
    4. heal
    5. user setting
There are a couple of important features here that the aspiring healer should bear in mind when shopping around for an add-on to support their healing endeavors. Note that Healbot Continued can track and display aggro in the same frame you use to track health and cast spells from. This can give you the extra second of time to get a heal going on the rogue, who may have scored one too many critical hits. The other very important
feature to note is that if other members of your party have Healbot installed, incoming heals are synchronized. This means that if you're making a split-second decision on whom to heal next, you'll have a visual indication of what spells your fellow healers are casting. A good example would be knowing if your paladin is in the middle of casting Holy Light on your troublesome Fire Mage, saving you the wasted time and mana of healing the same aggro bunny. This functionality is built-in healer coordination, something you won't find often.

In the next installment of Addon Spotlight, I will go over the features of Healbot Continued and explain what they are and how to use them. If you're curious, check out this add-on and let me know your thoughts!

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