Want to be a sultan of swing healing? A champion of Chain Heal? Totem Talk: Restoration will show you how, brought to you by Joe Perez, otherwise known as Lodur from World of Matticus and the For The Lore podcast
In April we talked about addons and macros that were focused on restoration shaman. We highlighted some staple addons and some useful macros for a variety of situations. In May, I tipped my hat to Power Auras Classic and pointed out the interaction between Totem Radius and AVR/AVRE. Shortly after that second addon post, news arose that AVR was going to be killed in the next major patch to hit servers. While I've never been one to rely solely on mods, it did make totem placement a lot easier and was pretty useful. In the end, though, it empowered players too much and so must be dealt with.
Since that news dropped, I have been going through reader email about addons and mods as well as combing through all the various choices available. So today, I would like to bring you part 3 of our restoration addon discussion.
Our very first time out, we talked about the importance of a totem addon, something that allows you to quickly organize and access your totems. Blizzard has gone a long way to make the default totem interface more user-friendly, but in the end, there is a plethora of mods that do the job better. My staple addon has always been Totem Timers. To complement this addon, we will give a thanks to Shamonyu, Earthen Ring (US-RP-H), for the reminder.
RaidTotems is a complementary addon to Totem Timers and is geared towards a leadership-minded restoration shaman. This mod is very similar to PallyPower in the fact it allows you to control assignments between players. RaidTotems allows a player to set what totems are being dropped by any shaman with totem timers installed. This is particularly handy in large raid environments with multiple shaman. You can ensure that all necessary totems are being dropped; if one is not necessary, you can skip it and allow a shaman to save some mana. After all, if five shaman are dropping Flametongue Totem, chances are likely one can skip it unless someone dies. The other beautiful thing about this is you can assign where each Earth Shield in the raid is going. This way you can make sure each tank is covered and no one will overlap and cancel out each other's Earth Shields. It is also very simplistic in its approach as far as handing out assignments and even saving them.
Saving and transmitting sets is quite handy, and you can name it literally anything you want. This mod is so handy that when I first found it in Burning Crusade, I made totem timers mandatory for all shaman raiders. At the time, we had four to five regular raiding shaman, so it made managing assignments simple and easy, even for non-restoration shaman. So, if you find yourself raiding with multiple shaman and you find yourself in charge, this may very well be worth your time.
Since news of AVR's and AVRE's imminent death, I have been looking for a replacement. In truth, so has everyone else. The main draw to me about the mod was that it showed you the range of your totems and who was in range of them. I believe the search is over. Matthew McCurley did a fantastic write-up of HudMap here in Addon Spotlight and honestly beat me to it by a few days. The addon is absolutely delightful; it creates a two-dimensional overlay on your screen very similar to the maps used for PvP battlegrounds.
Right off the bat I should start out by telling you that normally I despise HUDs. I do not like them at all. I have tried ArcHud and IceHud and various other assortments and it just never meshed with my playstyle. This mod, however, has changed how I feel about HUDs. HudMap provides a series of insanely useful information in a very easy and simple manner. The addon right from the point of installation also has default support for Totem Radius. It shows you everyone in your group and where they are in relation to your totems and has a custom cursor to show you where you are in relation to everyone else and your totems. It automatically zooms in and out to accommodate people moving around and the constant shifting of a battlefield.
One of the features that sold me on this mod, aside from tracking totem radius, was that it marks who is a healer and who is a tank on the HUD. Tanks are marked by shields, healers by little plus signs and DPS is marked by a triangle. This makes it very easy to see where tanks and healers are, as well DPS, so that you can always make sure you are properly placed in relation to your raid. Another stellar feature of this addon it it allows you to see who is targeting who. You can see this in the picture above, marked by the arrows and lines. You want to know how many healers are targeting that tank? You got it! Mods like Grid will show you the incoming healing amount, but knowing how many people are contributing to that total can be very handy and help you relocate healing faster. Want to see if that DPS is watching the mob or watching another player? You got that too! If you look in the picture above you will also see a glowing circle around one of the shields; that is my focus target. It pulses a little bit, so you always have a bead on it. There are a ton of settings in this addon and it has quickly won me over. Here is a quick video of the addon in action.
Pretty slick little addon, if I do say so myself. I have grown quite fond of this mod and have completely removed AVR and AVRE in favor of it. Now, if only it could take care of Infest and make me coffee at the same time ...
So how about you? Have you checked this mod out yet? What do you think of it? Come across any new or exciting mods this week? Show your totemic mastery by reading Totem Talk. Whether it's Mike Sacco's elemental edition, Joe Perez's coverage of restoration or Rich Maloy's enhancement edition, we have you covered.