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Addon Spotlight: DKIRunes/Diseases

Eliah Hecht

Addon Spotlight takes a look at the little bits of Lua and XML that make our interfaces special. From bar mods to unit frames and beyond, if it goes in your Addons folder, we'll cover it here.

This mod is strictly for Death Knights. Fortunately, I figure at least half of the WoW population has a Death Knight at this point, so a post like this isn't so much of a problem.

What is a problem is Blizz's official rune UI (at right). I love Blizzard to tiny pieces, but they dropped the ball there, in my opinion. Aside from the icons being a bit ugly and inscrutable, it's flat-out difficult to tell the state of your runes at a glance on the default display. The little rotating line that is supposed to tell you when your runes is ready again is also hard to read, at least for me. And watching critical debuffs on the default target frame is less than pleasant.

Fortunately, DeathKnight.Info Runes and Disease are here to give us all that vital information in readable and flexible form. The default state of the addon (as seen at the top right of this post) has way too much artwork for me; any pixels that don't contain information don't have a place on my screen. There's too much info I want to keep track of. But that's alright, because DKi Runes is extremely customizable.

At the right here is the rune display I use, positioned right on top of the Pitbull unit frame for my character (which I put around a third of the way from the bottom of my screen). The icons are simple and elegant, and runes slide in as they recharge, giving me a great sense of how long until I can Scourge Strike again (for instance), which is a big help in timing runic power dumps. I've had it set up like this for a few months now and it's hard to imagine playing seriously without a display this easy to read.

But if you don't like it the default way, or my way, you can make it your own - the graphics can get much fancier, you can get numerical countdowns until your runes are ready again, the rune order is customizable, and so forth.

DKi Diseases is a recent addition to the package, aiming to make disease tracking as lovely as possible. Diseases are sort of like our combo points - we need to get them up before we can use our most powerful moves, for the most part. We also need to make sure they're up as much as possible. At right is what I've currently worked out for my runes and diseases display, again sitting on top of my character's unit frame. It gives me everything I need without being too obtrusive.

One notable feature in the Diseases display that I haven't seen anywhere else is Pestilence tracking. It starts a timer when you cast Pestilence, letting you monitor the progress of your diseases on those AoE targets without targetting them. This could be a big help in certain situations, at least until the new Glyph of Disease (in patch 3.1) makes the whole process that much easier. That said, I couldn't figure out a good place for it in my UI, so I have it turned off, personally.

DKi Diseases also has all the basic features you would expect - movable, resizable bars, timers, icons, and auto-detection of whether you have Ebon Plaguebringer, and therefore a third disease to track. The Diseases module, although just introduced, is already a very useful and well-made part of an essential Death Knight mod. Good work, people! is also a good blog (I've been following it since before Wrath was in beta), so check it out if you're into Death Knights. And if you aren't, why did you read this far?

Download DKi Runes and Diseases at Curse

Addons are what we do on Addon Spotlight. Need a bar mod? Looking for alternatives to Outfitter, now that Blizz's Equipment Manager has been delayed? Trust in the Spotlight. And if you have any ideas for mods we should take a look at, drop us a line.

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