Each week, WoW Insider's Mathew McCurley brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which focuses on the backbone of the WoW gameplay experience: the user interface. Everything from bags to bars, buttons to DPS meters and beyond -- your addons folder will never be the same.
Useless flavor items have become an odd duck item in the MMO sphere. While we toil about in our virtual lives, amassing virtual goods in virtual storage, we also collect dumb trinkets and items that do nothing but look cool, make sounds, or annoy our friends. Why is it that we love virtual toys as much as our real life avatars do?
I can deal with most of the fun vanity items out there and even proudly proclaim that the best item in the entire game of World of Warcraft is the Tol Barad Searchlight. However, I cannot stand the train emotes. Train sets sounded like a fantastic idea, complete with a funtastic toy shop in Dalaran. What we got instead, during raiding at least, was a nightmare.
While combing through my emails a few days ago, I was in a particularly grumpy mood with no real pointed hatred or contempt for /train, but when my eyes finally rested on Edymnion's words, I was stirred to action. Trains need to be stopped. In his email, Edymnion recommended two addons that are designed to not only disable the /train emote completely but to find, capture, try, judge, and execute the perpetrators of train-on-ear violence.
We begin at the beginning, with an email:
One of my biggest buttons when it comes to griefers is the Toy Train Set. Just the sound of the /train emote is enough to set my nerves on edge. The problem is that in a large crowded area, such as a LFR group or the AH, it is virtually impossible to tell who actually pulled the dick move of setting one out. I went so far as to buy the Lil' X.T. pet just to have the unlimited train wrecker to counter this with. I'm sure I'm not the only one that would like to see this item removed from the game completely (or at least have the bit where every toon around is forced to do the emote), so I thought I'd share a couple of addons to help with the problem.
First one is Train Conductor. Its a small, simple addon that simply scans the logs to see whenever someone drops a train set and alerts you to who it was. No more being an anonymous prick! The other is Train Wreck, which completely disables the /train emote sound entirely. It hasn't been updated, but still works just fine. And if never hearing anyone do a legit /train again is the price to pay for never hearing another toy train set, I will consider that an acceptable tradeoff.
The first step to uncovering who the perpetrator of a train bomb is in order to find and publicly scorn the jokester. For that, you'll need every tool in the box. Fortunately, the box is small and only has one tool in it -- Train Conductor.
Train Conductor is a simple addon that prints out a message into your chat box that tells you who used a toy train set. The addon looks through the combat log and finds the train set parse, alerting you to which raider or auctioneer is spoiling the good times.
Once you find the culprit (using your brand new addon that is so light you won't even notice it), you can dispense any punishment you see fit. Personally, anyone who drops a train should have to take off their shoes for the rest of the raid, kind of like those Scared Straight videos about inmates yelling at troubled high schoolers: GIVE ME YOUR SHOES. If you can't hack it without shoes in this raid, then maybe you should have thought about dropping that train set before you did.
But you did it anyway, and we caught you with the help of Train Conductor, a lightweight addon that doesn't even need configuration options because it is so stoic in its mission. You can't faze Train Conductor.
If you're the type of person who doesn't want to administer corporal punishment because of train sets, I've got a /train solution for you that requires nothing from you except downloading one little addon. TrainWreck mutes player train sounds and the sounds created by the toy train sets that players drop. That's it.
Rather than installing the addon in the traditional way, you have to unzip the TrainWreck folder into the World of Warcraft/Data directory.
If you're looking for something more substantial than just getting rid of train emotes, you want to grab Mute Annoying WoW Sounds (Maws). Certain new mounts such as the Tyrael's Charger, as well as some of the ambient noises and repetitive cues that dot the WoW landscape, may upset some players' audible sensibilities.
Maws is my personal favorite addon because I like having the option to deal with the other sounds that might come up over the course of my play time. It's a bigger addon, yes, and there is the potential that I will be dealing with a user interface at some point, but it works and I like it.
In order to install this addon, download the .zip folder and put the Sound folder into your World of Warcraft/Data directory. Make sure you restart your game, or else changes made to the files and file structure will not be loaded in until the game restarts.
OK, no, don't actually be a mean person to train-droppers. Sure, they are annoying, but we all have train destroyers now and know how to use them. However, this is a teachable moment, friends. We can curb the spread of train disease and stop the problem at its core by introducing new players to better, more wholesome ways to grief their peers.
Addon Video Spotlight
Many people have been asking for videos of addons and addon configuration. While I am trying to find the time to put together my own videos, many community members and readers have sent me various links and videos to customization tutorials that they would like to share. When I get linked to some great videos, I'll show them off here. If you've got a video that you made or want to share, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week's video is from YouTube user Kavaison, who has put together a massive tutorial on creating your own Power Auras custom textures. From creation to execution, you'll get to watch as images become alerts and custom art for anything you need. While the complicated nature of image manipulation and custom texture creation isn't for everyone, even the most novice addon user would be intrigued at how pictures go from file to raid warning. Just check it out already!