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Thread: List of usefull Addons for Tanking

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011

    List of usefull Addons for Tanking

    I thought my fellow tanks that are just starting could find this usefull. It's basically a list of addons that I use that make my life so much easier. I'll explain a bit on what they do, and why I consider its a good addon to have. I'll list similar addons and separate them with "/" the first one mentioned being the one I personally use.

    General addons:

    Addon Control Panel: Useful for everyone, puts an additional option on your game menu that lets you manage your addons. You can turn on and off addons according to your inmediate needs and has an option to reload UI if a particular addon needs reloading to activate.

    Dominos/Bartender4: Highly customizable addon for action bars. Move, resize, hide, show, paging, class paging, easy keybinds. You name it, it has it.

    ErrorFilter: It hides those annoying and rather spammy error texts when you are spamming stuff. In a raid environment things tend to be rather spammy as it is, so the less spam the better you can focus on the stuff that actually matters.

    Quartz: Customizes all casting bars. Player, target, pet, focus target, etc. You on interrupt duty? no problem you can make your targets casting bar huge and put it in the middle of the screen where you cant miss it.

    PitBull Unit Frames 4.0/Shadowed Unitframes/X-perl Unit Frames: Unit frames addon, its kinda complicated at first to setup, but if you're really into customization this are the addons to go for, its got everything you can think of. I like pitbull over other unit frames addons like Xpearl and shadowed unit frames mainly because its got the most options but for most people its used for the same which is hiding Blizzard's ugly frames and moving your characters frame and your targets to the center of the screen where it should be.

    Addons that help you tank:

    Bigwigs Bossmods: Raid boss encounter addon. Alert messages, sounds, timer bars, etc. You certainly don't "need" it to be a good raider but its definitelly HIGHLY usefull and many guilds require you to have it as a requisite to join so yeah. Lets you know when that certain "thing" on an encounter is gonna happen so you can plan out your cooldowns.

    Littlewigs: Same as bigwigs but for 5 man instances.

    Death Knight Monitor/Magic Runes: Displays your runes, runic power, diseases and procs. It's highly customizable, lets you move and resize anything anywhere. I like DKM alot because its minimalistic, it also implements rune prioritization (makes it easier to see what rune will refresh next). Its useful for any DK, regardless of spec. I'm showing this one because I'm a DK, so yeah its useful.

    EventAlert: Gives a easy to recognize visual aid for procs.

    MikScrollingBattleText: changes how combat text is shown in your screen. It's ussually an aesthetic addon, but you can set it to show alerts on cooldowns, inmunities, missing buffs, debuff gains.

    Omen: Shows how much threat everyone has on your current target, usefull on fights that require tank switches or fights with threat drop mechanics.

    Satrina Buff Frame: Customizes how you see your buffs and debuffs. Personally I set it to show certain buffs that I need to watch with larger icons and on a easier place to keep track on. As a tank you will sometimes need to chain cooldowns and to do that, you need to keep track of when they expire.

    Power Auras Classic: Visual aid for buffs, debuffs, and a lot of stuff with a high level of customization. I Use it to show icons of skills when they are usable, I place them around my death knight monitor frames, showing my tanking cooldowns so I know when they are up. This seems to be a complicated addon to get into, but when you get the hang of it, its really simple and really really useful.

    ***Tidyplates+ThreatPlates: Changes how the nameplates look and lets you customize it to your liking. REALLY useful when tanking multiple mobs, because it shows different colors on the mobs you have aggro on and the loose ones so you can notice what mobs that got aggroed by anyone else.

    Miscelaneous usefull addons:

    Grim Reaper/Expiration: Wanna know exactly what killed you?. Standing in fire?, passed 15 seconds without a single heal?, you forgot Blood presence and got critted by the boss?. And you can track everyone on your group/raid, I can't tell you how many times I've had to call out ppl that mess up and tries to play the blame game on others and with this you can have the facts behind you.

    EnsidiaFail: Shows in chat if you stepped on fire, took an avoidable breath to the face, it will pretty much show any avoidable damage taken and who took it. It can be spammy and kinda conflictive if you set it to post on guild chat, but you can set it to run on a private chat channel. Useful to know if you messed up or someone else messed up and blew you up.

    Marking Bar: I HIGHLY RECOMMEND marking bar. Easy accesible frames with raid icon marks and raid flare marks for easy fast marking. this addon is SO useful, for 5 mans and for Raids (given that you are given the responsability of marking). Comes with a chat macro for CC assignments.

    Recount/Skada: Ok this one is more than a "damage meter" it has some other options you may or may not know of. If you set it to show damage taken and you left click on your name you will get TONS of usefull information about your mitigation, effective avoidance, absorbs, self heals, it has EVERYTHING you can imagine, all sources of damage and wheter it landed, you avoided it, absorbed it, dodged a debuff with AMS, etc. I put up a screenshot with how this information is displayed on recount

    I hope this helps, I've seen lots of threads with people asking what addons are good for tanking and whatnot so I decided to give it a shot.

    Feel free to ask any questions regarding these addons, setup, specific class addons or if you "want an addon that does _______" I'll try to answer to the best of my ability.

    Suffer well brothers.

    DK tank is OP.jpgSmarthas DK Blood Chogall.jpgTanking multiple targets.jpg
    Last edited by Smartass; 02-23-2011 at 09:45 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Nice effort. I think it's worth noting a few things:

    - When it comes to tanking addons, TidyPlates + ThreatPlates should be right at the top of the list. It really does what the default interface should with regard to making life easier for tanks.
    - There are plenty of alternatives that can do the same job. I much prefer Shadowed Unitframes to Pitbull (but the end results can look almost identical). I prefer Skada to Recount, not least because it can also replace Omen. I use Expiration instead of Grim Reaper... etc, etc.

    If you wanted to make a generic guide, you might break it out into functional requirements like this:
    - Improve your nameplates so that you can see multiple mobs clearly and identify which you have agro on
    - Adjust your Unitframe, Power bars and Notifications so that the information you need is in the middle of your field of view without obscuring your character
    - Have the information you need when you need it: boss mod notifications, ability/debuff/cooldown information visible clearly in combat, post-fight or post-mortem information available after the fight

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    @ swelt: I agree, I think at the moment I just ended up listing what I use, but it's worth noting the options so someone that is just starting knows what to look for, I'll edit in the alternatives, thanks for the input

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    WI, USA
    I'm going to have to agree with Swelt that you are approaching this in the wrong direction. You're starting with a list of addons and discussing what they do for you. Rather than starting with a list of needs to be fulfilled.

    For example, healers in particular but any class with the ability to cleanse debuffs will likely want UI customizations to assist with the process of cleansing in order to make it more efficient in these three areas. One, identifying who has a debuff that can be cleansed. Two, identifying what the debuff is to avoid unnecessary cleansing (such as cleansing of thunderclap, short duration minimal impact debuff). Finally, casting your ability which will cleanse the debuff if necessary.

    I could say "get Decursive if you're a healer". Or I can discuss in depth what the need is and how an addons like it can assist with streamlining the process.

    When you go and list off unit frames... there is always one more. What if a tank wants to use ag_unitFrames. Too bad, it's not listed here. What if they prefer a heads up display mode instead of traditional unit frames? Too bad, it's not listed here. There are a ton of addons that serve the function of modifying your unit frame display. Listing them all is worthless. Understanding the core reasons why you may want one isn't. For a tank, knowing your current status, in particular health, is extremely important (but it's technically important information for everyone). Because it's so highly important, sticking it off in the corner of your screen isn't very effective cause it makes you look away from the center of your screen. The more important the information, the more you want it to be centralized so there is less eye movement required when looking at what your character is standing in, what your health is at and your action bars. Instead of having your eyes jumping all over the place, by putting this information more centralized, your eyes don't have to jump around as much.

    When all you do is list addons, you miss out on the reason for the addons. That's what's important.
    Last edited by Quinafoi; 02-23-2011 at 10:19 AM.
    "In anything, if you want to go from just a beginner to a pro, you need a montage." /w TankSpot WTB Montage for Raiders.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    West Coast
    That list rocks I love seeing the tools listed by other successful tanks...

    Deadly Boss Mods
    Warns you of oodles of stuff such as standing in stuff, time to interrupt, time to run away.. It has a distinct sound to draw your attention.. It saves me from getting one shot killed and looking like an idiot. Tanks interface is extremely busy and it is easy to lose attention to a certain area but this picks up the slack some.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    i would add optitaunt to the list since it will announce when you use abilities to /s /p or /r like last stand/shield wall/enraged regen/other tank cd's and when they end so your healers dont accidentally pop one of their cd's on you at the same time like guardian spirit/pain suppression.

    |Ex Tank|


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    When all you do is list addons, you miss out on the reason for the addons. That's what's important.
    This. Necessity is the mother of invention and all that.

    On topic, I would recommend fiddling with your SCT mod's output. I don't know about you, but I don't particularly care if my incinerate hit for x or I got healed for y by 3 or 4 different HoTs. Damage and/or healing spam is distracting, blocks your view and can drown out the messages that are important.

    EDIT: And I forgot to add, some kind of timer addon, e.g. ForteXorcist or TellMeWhen (bar or icon based respectively), can be used as an alternative way to track your buffs/debuffs, as well as your cooldowns.
    Last edited by Toltiir; 02-24-2011 at 11:44 PM. Reason: Punctuation

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