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Addon Spotlight: Grind in style with Factionizer


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.

The pre-expansion stretch is a great time to work on those pesky achievements that have been sitting on your to-do list for some time. Now that your raid schedule is a little more relaxed or you are just out doing your own thing, it's time to try something new. One of those tasks that I've given myself is to finally finish up my 50 exalted reputations achievement.

I'm close -- real close. Two reputations to go, in fact, and they aren't even that hard to do. It's all about the time put in and the motivation to do it. After I logged in and opened up my reputations tab, I was astonished at how little the interface had changed in seven years. The basic setup is still intact with a few minor changes.

Factionizer was recommended to me by a reader whose email tersely consisted of just these words: "Factionizer is a great addon, put it on the spotlight." That was the entire message. After checking out the addon, I was suitably impressed not only because there is a definite need for a more robust faction window (if only for awesome in-game lore purposes) but because the addon got me thinking about completing reputation achievements once again.

The reputation grind

I've never been a fan of the obscene reputation grinds. There are certain levels of masochism that I will inflict upon myself, a degree of hurt and pain that does, in fact, have a very strict, bright line limit. That limit is Ravenholdt. No other faction represents the one task that I will never be able to accomplish -- pickpocketing that many lockboxes. No amount of personal fortitude can secure me Ravenholdt.

The others, however, are fair game. I've never gotten them to exalted, but the goblin city factions don't seem too rough. I've done Ogri'la twice and I'm proud of it. There will never, ever be a third time. While the Bloodsails were tempting, the grind back to neutral for the goblins straddles the line between attainable and Ravenholdt.

Factionizer adds

Reputation's interface is so 2004. I mean, really. Look at all the potential for an in-game lore experience and encyclopedia, with bios on top NPCs in the faction, pictures, notable events, etc. The reputation grind could even unlock more of this lore for each level you progress.

Factionizer adds in some great tools that complement the reputation pane. A more detailed readout of the amount of reputation needed to advance is readily apparent and welcome. Statistics and tracking are built right in, letting you know exactly how much reputation you'll need and in what container you're holding it (bag, bank, etc). You can even get a total of how much you've gained in just this session.

The real highlight of Factionizer, however, is the robust "how to gain reputation" section added on to the right side of the frame. This area reminds you what quests need to be completed or mobs to kill in order to gain up your rep. You can filter what you want the addon to show you, just in case, for instance, you don't want to have to run dungeons for reputation.

Lore Journal?

WoW is so rich with lore that the idea of an in-game lore journal tied to the reputations pane is a brilliant idea. Reputation levels unlock new stories, artwork, and other tidbits of information. Take a page (ha, ha) from the astounding Tome of Knowledge from Warhammer Online, one of the most comprehensive and awesome lore experiences in an MMO ever. It's like the achievement and stat tracker pages, supercharged.

More reputation lore, more information, more ways to interact with reputations! Until then, hopefully Factionizer can help you out with your reputation grinding challenges and offer up some ease of play. You've got some time -- why not grind out a rep or two? Factionizer at least tells you where to go.

Download Factionizer at [Curse].

Addon Mailbag seems like a good idea, doesn't it?

Hi mat,

I have just recently gotten back into the game and most of my previous add ons were either not available anymore or completely changed so I set out on a quest to completely redo my entire ui from the bottom up and I think I have it all figured out except I had a thought that would be amazing but can't find the add on to help me do it.

Basically I need an add on that is a raid/party frame display that automatically changes the size and configuration of the unit frames based on the type of party I am in so when I join a random 5 man dungeon group the frames are big enough to fill the entire panel (kg panel that is) and when I join a 25 man raid the frames will get smaller and rearranged themselves to fit 25 frames where there were only 5 before. I know there is an add on that will let you automatically switch profiles for all of your add ons at the same time but all I need to change is the raid frames add on and I hope to find one that doesn't require too many slash commands or ui reloads.

Thank you for your help!!
Bgranger of Misha US
Thanks for the email, Bgranger. I've been using Grid since it was released, practically, and it has been changing my raid frame size to match the type of raid I've been in since the beginning. The enclosure for the frames changes size, but each configuration has stayed as its own customized thing depending on the raid size. Or maybe I am misunderstanding the issue.

Vuhdo and Grid are two raid frames that I know people have used to fill out multiple shapes and sizes of kgPanel windowing, so I would start there and see if they do the trick for you. Grid is especially fun to tinker with in my experience, and you will have a pretty fun time with it.
Hi Mathew,

Kong and MoveAnything feel essential to keeping my UI minimal while I'm in combat, whilst keeping all the bits and bobs I want out of combat. But they haven't been updated for about a year. They seem to be sort-of working, as long as I don't want to change anything from how they're current been set up. That's fine for my main, where everything is pretty much all set up, but is pretty on new toons who I haven't configured things for. Do you have any suggestions for alternatives?

Best Wishes

You know what? I don't know, actually. I've been using both of those for so long without too much issue, but it's definitely time to start shoring up replacements for these addons. Actually, I've got an even better idea. We're going to go on an initiative to help addon users find alternatives to some of the best addons that have since been discontinued or have been teetering on the brink of disaster. I'll announce more next week while I formulate this whole thing in my head, but until then, can anyone recommend something for our dear reader Ramesh here?

Replacing Kong might be a bit easier than you think because most UI elements and addons these days have an auto-hide feature of some type. You can set these auto-hides on addons like Dominos, definitely, and most minimaps have some kind of hiding feature standard. Nonetheless, it is nice to have Kong take care of everything for you without the tedium of doing it yourself. Oy.

MoveAnything is becoming less and less needed these days as Blizzard is adding in its own movers to most of the default addons and UI elements. However, Blizzard can go a long way to improve this type of functionality and MoveAnything just does it the best. With more precise control over PlayerPowerBarAlt, for instance, Blizzard could effectively give players no reason to need an addon like MoveAnything and still keep the parameters of the move on their terms. The only reason I have MoveAnything installed at all is because there are pieces of the interface that I cannot grab and drag, or resize, or tinker with without adding a new layer on top.

Get your Addon Replacements ready, because next week we're going to send in the B team.

Addons are what we do on Addon Spotlight. If you're new to mods, Addons 101 will walk you through the basics; see what other players are doing at Reader UI of the Week. If there's a mod you think Addon Spotlight should take a look at, email

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