Friday, June 10, 2011

Taking Shortcuts

I've always been all about efficiency.  In game as much as in real life.  Everything that I do I am always thinking if there is a way that I can do it better.  A way to get the job done better with the same effort or less.

Some call that a good trait and others call it is little obsessive.  Either way, I am always looking to find shortcuts in game for things I do. 

The biggest shortcut I have is targeting basically.  I wrote an post a short while back about how I use healbot for various other things and not just for healing.  This is because it created a shortcut for me.  It removed one move effectively from what I need to do.  If I do not need to target someone to do an action on them then it saves me time.  I love that.

So I am always looking for more ways to save time.  Every movement less I have to make is a split second faster my response time becomes.  It is better to right click a name to misdirect to them then to click them and then misdirect to them.  The click them could have just been the right click, this removes a full action.

A friend of mine, most likely one of the best tanks ever, does not use a mouse at all, except to loot, which he normally doesn't do either.  Both hands are on his keyboard at all times and he has every single key on his keyboard keybound to something including an additional 18 special keys, alts, shifts and ctrls for all of them.

I have a lot of bindings but I don't think I could remember what is roughly 200+ keybinds.  Not to mention that I have gotten so used to moving and targeting with my mouse, yet what he does appeals to me greatly.

It is not like he has 200 things he uses all the time but everything he might ever have a use for is keybound somewhere.  When he is tanking he could be running up to a pack of 5 mobs and all 5 are marked instantly at what seems like the exact same moment.  I ask him how he does that, is it an addon, he said it is just that he has all marks bound to his keyboard and is just that fast of a typer. 

Just think about that for a moment.  He has to tab, mark, tab, mark, tab, mark, tab, mark, tab, mark and if any of those tabs go back to a previous target he has to tab until he gets a new one being he does not target with his mouse and he does all of that in what seems like 1 second.

Now that is what I am talking about with taking shortcuts.  I have created a lot of little shortcuts myself, from using healbot for some things on my non healing characters so I do not need to target someone to making macros for misdirecting to doing tricks on my focus.  These are the extent of shortcuts I have.

I am always looking for more shortcurts and I think it is time I try to find some additional ones.  Binding markings might be nice.  Been using quickmark for the most part or just manually marking things but I think the binding idea for them as well is a pretty good idea.

Common Shortcuts:

Targeting A Friendly:
- This removes the step of having to manually target a friendly.
- Most healing addons can do this for you if you are a healer. 
- If you are a tank or a DPS it is easy enough to modify a healing addon for your needs.

- Adds two or more things into one click.
- Anything off the global cooldown can be added to one item on the global cooldown.
- You can put as many things as you want in one macro.
- Instead of clicking two or more keys you only have to click one.

Uncommon Keybinds:
- Keys you might never use bound to do something.
- Perfect for marking, mounts, professions, etc.

Mouseover Dual Functions:
- Having a mouseover macro do more then one thing depending on what is targeted.
- You can have it cast one thing if the target is friendly, one if it is an enemy and one thing if nothing is targeted.  Effectively putting three different actions into one bind without the use of modifiers.

There has to be something else, something I am not thinking of, something else that removes a step, something else that is a shortcut.

Any time you can remove a step you are making yourself a better player.

I am always trying to become a better player.

If only they could make an addon like healbot for DPS.  Could you just imagine if it auto filled a list with all mobs that are currently aggroed, showing the percentage of aggro they have on the character you have selected as tank and you could attack by clicking just like you heal by clicking? 

That would be amazing.  I would use that add on easily.  It would also work wonders for a tank.  You would click the name you want to taunt, or attack, regardless of what mob you are currently targeting.  It would really remove a lot of steps, the ultimate of shortcuts.  I want this add on.

Can this type of addon even be theoretically made?  I don't know much about addons, but this idea really interests me. 

It would really remove a huge step in the game.  Targeting an unfriendly.  I've already completely removed the need to target a friendly, removing the need to target an unfriendly would be a huge shortcut that can not be overlooked.


  1. I think they made something sort of like that for tanks to watch over all aggro tables...theoretically it could happen though auto assist might be easier to accomplish. Maybe do some indepth research on curse and see if they have a suggestion input. If so, this might be an interesting thing. To me though, the true art of DPS is selecting the right tgt at the right time. It does of course help when you have show tgt of tgt focus. I dunno just some random thoughts.

  2. An add-on can show and hide "buttons".

    The following actions can only be executed by an add-on WHEN YOU ARE NOT IN COMBAT:
    - move buttons on the screen
    - change the "action" that is executed when you click on the button
    - therefore it cannot assign or change the target with which it'll interact

    You could create an add-on that shows multiple buttons and link the mobs but it'll had to happen before you enter combat.

    That's also the reason why grid is fucked up if you get disconnected in a boss fight and log back in while in combat. Or why grid doesn't work if someone enters your party while you're in combat.

    in addition to that, everyone not in your group/raid doesn't have a unique identifier. Two mobs with the same name and level cannot be distinguished by an add-on. See

    You can say

    /target party1
    /target party2

    but there is no

    /target enemy1
    /target enemy2