Just TellMeWhen, Baby. I NeedToKnow.

Posted by in Feral, Guide

Earlier today I received an e-mail from a reader asking for an addon that would monitor all his DoTs and debuffs to maximize Cat DPS. What a great question! Maximizing your damage as a slick kitten requires maintaining a series of bleeds and bleed enhancing debuffs while weaving in hard-hitting Shreds and making sure Savage Roar never runs out. Fortunately, there are two such addons that work pretty well separately or in conjunction with one another—and they’re not just for Druids.

NeedToKnow

NeedToKnow provides a moveable, unobtrusive set of receding bars on your UI that monitor whichever buffs and debuffs you specify. The add-on includes functionality to change the color of each buff and debuff for ease in reading, the ability to monitor buffs/debuffs on yourself and/or on your target, and the ability to differentiate between your debuff on a target and another player’s debuff on that same target. It’s still up to you to train yourself to monitor NeedToKnow and intuitively understand when it’s best to refresh each buff/debuff during your rotation. For example, if NeedToKnow informs you that both Rip and Savage Roar will run out and you have 5 combo points, you’re much better off using those 5 combo points to Rip just before Savage Roar runs out, even if it means you’ll have a few seconds worth of white and yellow damage without the AP boost.

The logic here is that you’ll be able to refresh your DoT at full strength while still being powered by Savage Roar, eliminating those pesky “a more powerful spell is active” notices. You potentially lose more damage allowing Rip to fall off rather than Savage Roar, because you’ll have to build up another 5 combo points to refresh that DoT. Savage Roar, however, functions a little bit like the Rogue finisher Slice and Dice; you generally only need a 2 combo point SR to maintain the buff for the duration of your rotations. Remember that rotations aren’t as simple as they used to be—Omen of Clarity procs should be exploited, Berserk requires some manuevering, and Tiger’s Fury gives you an unexpected (but necessary) Energy boost. Keep SR up as much as Druidly possible, and always Rip at 5 combo points. Be dynamic, and you’ve got it down.

Here’s how you set it up:

  1. DL and install the addon in the usual way.
  2. Log in.
  3. You’ll see the default NeedToKnow bars sitting in the right hand corner of your screen. Size and place your group of bars where you’d like on your screen by clicking and dragging.
  4. Want to track more than three buffs or debuffs? Bring up your “Interface” screen and drop down to the AddOn Options. This screen allows you to customize the look and feel of your bars (it’s pretty important, I know), add or subtract bars, and create different groups of bars (which you probably don’t need). Do what you need to do, Lock Addon if you don’t want to accidentally move your shit around during raid, and save.
  5. To set up the bars, right click on each. Choose your buff/debuff to time by typing in the name exactly. Make sure your bar is enabled, and check “Only show if cast by self” if that’s your bag (it usually is).
  6. Check whether the spell you inputted is a Buff or a Debuff. If you screw this up, NeedToKnow won’t end up tracking anything.
  7. Check what unit you’re going to be monitoring. Buffs are usually monitored by Player, and Debuffs are usually monitored by Targets. You get the picture.
  8. You can also change the color of each bar by futzing around with the “Bar Color” option. It’s pretty obvious.
  9. Ready to rock and roll? Type /needtoknow and the bars will disappear and lock for battle.

This is how a simple NeedToKnow setup looks in action:

TellMeWhen

TellMeWhen is a little more dynamic, but essentially has the same functionality as NeedToKnow. I, personally, don’t use TellMeWhen, but it allows you to time buffs, debuffs, cooldowns, spell and weapon procs, and will display an icon when each event happens. TellMeWhen is extraneous if you’re using something like SCT that lights up whenever you get any status changing buffs, but if you need an in-your-face reminder that you should probably Shred when you get a Clearcast, this mod is probably for you.

Luckily for you, the way you set up TellMeWhen is much the same way you set up NeedToKnow.

  1. DL and install the addon in the usual way.
  2. Log in.
  3. You’ll see the default TellMeWhen icons sitting in the right hand corner of your screen. Size and place your group of icons where you’d like on your screen by clicking and dragging.
  4. Bring up your “Interface” screen and drop down to the AddOn Options. This screen allows you to add or subtract icon columns and rows, create different groups of icons (which you probably don’t need), and choose whether you want those icons to only display while in combat. Do what you need to do, Lock Addon if you don’t want to accidentally move your shit around during raid, and save.
  5. Right click on an icon and choose the spell, buff, debuff, proc, whatever that you want to track. Enable the icon.
  6. If you’re monitoring buffs and debuffs, fill in the information the same way that you’d do it for NeedToKnow.
  7. If, however, you’re monitoring a temporary buff or procced effect, make sure you note whether the cooldown is a spell, ability, or item, and select when you’d like the icon for that cooldown to display.
  8. Type /tellmewhen and the icons will lock and disappear.

That’s it! You don’t ever need an addon to tell you how to play (and I’d argue that you should easily be able to get along without either of these), but both NeedToKnow and TellMeWhen can make monitoring your DPS rotations easier than a drunk chick on prom night.