Tag Archives: technical support

Discipline Priest Macros for Cataclysm

Macros are useful ways to bind several actions to one key or quickbar slot. Any class has an infinite variety of ways they could bind spells, actions, or alerts, but I thought it would be useful to share the few macros I use as a discipline priest in Cataclysm.

To use the following macros, load your character in WoW and hit ‘Esc’. Chose ‘Macros’ from the menu, select ‘New’ and paste the code for each macro into the empty space below the icon. Choose a nifty icon, name it, hit save and drag the icon to your quickbar. Done!

If anyone would like to share their own useful disc healing macros in the comments, please feel free!

Power Word: Fortitude +  Shadow Protection +  Buff All:

Inner Will + Alert

/showtooltip Buff All
/tar self
/cast Inner Will
/say Priest buffs applied.

Buff your group and yourself and announce that you have done so. Works in party, raid, or all by your lonesome.

Free Greater Heal:

Inner Focus + Greater Heal

/showtooltip  Free Greater Heal
/cast Inner Focus
/cast Greater Heal

Casts Inner Focus, which decreases the mana cost of your next Greater Heal, Prayer of Healing, or to zero, and then casts Greater Heal on your target.

Self Infusion:

Target Self + Power Infusion

/showtooltip Self Infusion
/tar self
/cast Power Infusion

Casts Power Infusion on yourself to speed your spell cast time and reduce mana cost.

Raidwide Damage Redux:

Power Infusion + Divine Hymn

/showtooltip Raidwide Damage
/tar self
/cast Power Infusion
/cast Divine Hymn

Casts Power Infusion on yourself, speeding the cast time and reducing the mana cost of your Divine Hymn. Good followed with a Prayer of Healing.

Possible Addition:

Inner Focus + Prayer of Healing

/showtooltip Raidwide Damage Plus
/cast Inner Focus
/cast Prayer of Healing

Casts Inner Focus- if it’s not on cooldown- with Prayer of Healing, to make PoH free.

 

Improved Shadowfiend

Acquire Target + Shadowfiend

/showtooltip Improved Shadowfiend
/cast [nopet,harm][nopet,target=targettarget,harm]Shadowfiend
/petattack [harm][target=targettarget,harm]
/petaggressive
/cast [harm][target=targettarget,harm]Shadowcrawl

Summons a Shadowfiend  and makes him aggressive. If a Shadowfiend is already out, it casts Shadowcrawl.

Heal ALL The Things!:

Barrier + Alert + Power Infusion +   Prayer of Healing

#showtooltip Big Barrier Heal
/cast Power Word: Barrier

Next macro:
/raid DPS: Please get under the yellow dome now.
/tar self
/cast Power Infusion
/cast Prayer of Healing

Casts a Barrier, alerts all the DPS to stand inside of it, casts Power Infusion on yourself for speed and reduced costs, and then casts Prayer of Healing on everyone in your party. Be sure you’re in the party with your DPS for this to work as advertised!

Polite Priesting:

Alert + Hymn of Hope

/showtooltip Hymn of Hope Plus
/tar self
/raid Casting mana regen. Mana users, please within 10 yards of %t.
/cast Hymn of Hope

Alerts the raid that you’re about to cast Hymn of Hope to regen mana for everyone within 10 yards of you, then casts HoH.

Resurrection Alert:

Resurrection +  Alert

/showtooltip Resurrection
/y Incoming resurrection on %t.
/cast Resurrection

Casts Resurrection on your target and announces you are doing so in a yell.

Bonus Macro!

Super Suppression:

Target your tank + Pain Suppression + Alert

#showtooltip Super Suppression – YOURTANKNAMEHERE
/tar YOURTANKNAMEHERE
/cast Pain Suppression
/raid Pain Suppression on %t.

This one requires a little customization but is well worth the effort. If you regularly heal a particular tank, put their character name into the macro wherever you see YOURTANKNAMEHERE. The macro will then target your tank, cast Pain Suppression on her (reducing her damage by 40% for 8 seconds) and announce it to your raid.

Useful Sites For Macro Creation:

For some reason, macro sites  are dominated by an unbelievable number of junk sites with viruses and the like. Please use caution when searching for macros on the interwebs.

Wowpedia’s Useful Macros for Priests

WoW 300 Macros: A mess of a site, but the generators are helpful

Wowpedia’s General Guide To Macros

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Shameless Self-Promotion: A Beginner’s Guide To Driving Traffic to Your WoW Blog

World of Warcraft blogs are unique in the blogging universe (I refuse to say ‘blogiverse’): You have a potential audience of 13 million players, but can only seem to reach fifty or so a day.

There’s a disconnect here. How is it possible that so few people are interested in your guide to Ret Pally gear? How can the comical stylings of Kachunk, Clown of Orgrimmar, go unnoticed by so many? You pour your heart and soul into your posts and then ten people read it.

Of the ten, no one comments.

It’s disheartening.

Not too long ago- I just checked, and it was July- I practically had a heart attack if my site reached the lofty heights of a hundred visitors. I’m not ashamed to say I threw an impromptu party the day it reached 1,000 daily hits, the two of us crowded around the monitor with a hastily-purchased bottle of wine after I noticed it had reached 850 earlier in the evening. These days, I give my stats the slit-eye if they don’t get over 2,000 by noon.

I’m not the least bit embarrassed about my love of the numbers. The more visitors I’ve had, the more people maybe, possibly, perhaps heard something I said and laughed, or picked up the right gear, or- please, Jeebus- re-specced to Discipline.

People don’t like to talk about their WoW blog traffic for the most part; it’s taboo, like talking about your salary or embarrassing sexual ailments. But I am a shameless self-promoter, and my capacity for embarassment is bottomless. With a little work, you can be a shameless self-promoter, too!

And before you ask, yes: I wrote this post to get more blog hits.

See? You’re learning already.

Lesson #1: Know Thine Enemy

You need a way to track visitors to your site so that you can better judge what posts are of interest to the community, and what posts are of interest to no one but yourself.

If you have a WordPress blog, you already have tracking software installed; it’s in ‘Dashboard’ under ‘Site Stats’. If you have a self-hosted blog, or one that allows you to add JavaScript in some way, go get Google Analytics.

It doesn’t matter in the slightest where your visitors are from, what connection type they’re using, or any personal characteristic; what you’re looking for here is trending, not Big Brother.

Your key stats are (a) what pages get the most traffic? and (b) what keywords drive the most search engine traffic to your page? We’ll go into detail on the whys of that in a moment, but those stats must be accessible to you in some way.

Lesson #2: That Social Networking Show

You must have a blog Twitter account. You must have a blog Facebook account. Use them. Befriend others whom you actually like. When you create a new post, add it to both.

Show off your new posts clearly. “New post! This is the Title: short link” works well for me.

Don’t bother with “please RT!”. They will or they won’t; you’re a strong writer whose work speaks for itself.

The same goes for reposting your original announcement; one in the morning and one in the evening works well to hit the day and night crowds, but that’s where it must end.

They will or they won’t.

Strong!

Lesson #3: The Almighty Holler (or Why No One Cares What You Had For Lunch)

The content of your blog is up to no one but you.

However, the desire to read your blog is shared- or not- by the rest of the world. If you’re reading this, you could be home now probably want more of the latter and are willing to reconsider on the former.

You have something to say that is interesting to people who want to read it. You do. This is an indisputable fact. There are far more people out there who read blogs than write them. We just have to crack the acorn of your brain and get to the juicy, readable meat that’s inside.

If you tell a story about yourself, it must have parts that could be applied to other people. This means you DO NOT write about the great gear you’re working on unless you simultaneously talk about how all the brutha’ ret pallys out there could benefit from it, and, if you’re wise, include an amusing anecdote or two about the comedy of errors you’ve run into along the path of acquisition along with links to Wowhead.

This isn’t a diary. No one cares what you had for lunch.

Start specific, get more general. If you start blogging about everything under the sun, it’s difficult to target your audience.

If, however, you start with a niche- ‘Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About DK Tanking But Were Afraid To Ask!’- you gain readers who are interested in your topic, and who then, y’know, recommend you. I know, I know- heaven forfend. And almost every specific topic in WoW, luckily, is practically impossible to exhaust! It’s wonderful!

Once you’ve got your base readership down, then- and only then, and maybe not even then!- start to branch out. Define who you are, even if who you are is a bank-altin’ gold monger, or a WoW blog-link repository, or a pretty dress FIEND!

Niche is king.

Be self-deprecating. You’ve got problems… lots of ‘em! And nothing is funnier or more charming to read than someone who can laugh at themselves.

Besides, it’s immensely cheering to reveal some cringe-inducing moment and have ten people comment to say, “Ahhhh, I did that too! God, I was SO EMBARRASSED! lulz”.

Spellcheck. Non-negotiable.

Lesson #4: You Gotta Spend Love To Make Love

Here’s a hard thought for every new blogger to keep in mind (and one I absolutely tell myself every day): “No one is coming to my site first.”

Unless you’re the editor of MMO Champion or WoW Insider, chances are exceptionally good that no one is coming to visit your blog without going to another WoW site first. Alex Ziebart, you may skip this bit.

Your job- and it is work, but the most fun you can possibly have working- is to get out into the community.

You MUST become an uber-commenter. Traffic comes from two sources: search engines (discussed further below) and referrals. If you have a thought- any old kind of thought- on a post, on any blog whatsoever… COMMENT!

People will click on the link that is by your name. I swear it.

Always, always, always sign in to the commenting system so that you can associate your name with a clickable link to your website.

You MUST comment regularly on the Big Sites. You MUST comment at MMO-Champion. You MUST comment on WoW Insider. If your particular niche has a well-known forums site (PlusHeals.com for any healers, for example), you MUST comment there.

Don’t worry about looking like a fool. Don’t worry about people arguing with you. Don’t be afraid. Start topics! Respond to others!

Get in there and get dirty!

/buttslap

You MUST refer back to your blog and specific blog posts you have written in your comments, with links. This one is optional for commenting on other people’s blogs, but absolutely required for posting on the Big Sites.

If you don’t have your blog linked in your signature on MMO Champions, you’re missing a goldmine of visitors. You’re not forcing people to visit you; they want to come! Make it easy for them to do so.

You’re not doing it in every post, but if a conversation is going on that directly revolves around a post you’ve written, link to your post.

And hey- you don’t have to say you wrote it. I won’t tell.

You MUST have a blog roll. If someone links to you, it’s gentlemanly to link back to them. It doesn’t hurt you one bit, and the blogging community is a community of the first order. Blog Azeroth can tell you that.

If you link to someone, tell them you linked to them! A brief, nice email (‘Hey, love your blog! I’ve stuck it on my blog roll- come visit at disciplinaryaction.org!”) is always polite.

Nothing makes me sadder than finding a link to myself on someone else’s page when I didn’t even know they existed. I want to shamelessly promote WoW blogs- I have more shameless self-promotion than I can handle, and I enjoy getting it on others (especially the unsuspecting!).

Lesson #5: The Key(words) To Success

On a day that I post, most of my readership comes from subscribers and links. On a day that I don’t post, however, a good 85% of my traffic comes from search engines. You need to ensure you’re creating a blog that plays nice with search engine bots; what good is having the best blog going about goblin gold strategies if your average Googler can’t find it?

Be current. If you’ve written a slew of posts on the Cataclysm changes and you’ve tagged them all “4.0.1”, no one searching for 4.0.3 (or 4, or 5) is ever going to find them. If they do stumble on the post, you’re going to look dated.

When a new expansion comes out, upgrade all your date-specific tags if the content of the post is still current.

Use tags. You should never have a post without a category and tags. Tags are search-engine gold.

Don’t use tags that have nothing to do with your post just because that topic seems to be trending- people will get annoyed at your perfidy and leave- but if you’re talking about Ironforge dwarf tossing, you should include everything you can think of that’s relevant to long-range ballistic shorties.

Think like a searcher. Good posters use the word ‘you’ a lot in their writing. That’s great: you’re putting yourself in the place of your reader and mentally inviting them into your work. Nicely done!

When someone searches on Google, though, they overwhelmingly type in things like “can i fly to tol barad” and “how can i gear for a disc priest in Cataclysm”. See the problem? You have to figure out a way to phrase things so that someone searching in the first person finds your blog written in the second person.

How you do that is up to you.

(u see whut i did thur?)

In Conclusion

You don’t have to bump along with fewer readers than you know your writing skillz warrant.

You do have to work to get there… but get there you will! I have enormous faith in the brainpower that drives our strange, WoW-centric branch of the universe. I salute you and want to see you all succeed.

And when you do, link to me.

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Disc Priest Gear: Using Wowhead To Your Advantage

Wowhead.com has a most excellent feature that I think few of us use to its fullest extent.

If you click on “Database > Items > Armor”, you can choose ‘Priest’ and then ‘Discipline’ (or whatever) from the dropdown menu titled “Start Weighting… Preset:”.

Doing this gives you a list of all gear for Discipline Priests in one huge list (I’d recommend limiting the required level or iLevel – 333 or higher if you want to run Heroics).

In the results, off to the right, there’s a ‘Score’ that shows how good it is for the spec you selected in ‘Presets’.

The down side is that it doesn’t have any commentary, but for pure numbers and names, it can’t be beat.

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The World of Warcraft Workout: Playing on a Treadmill

World of Warcraft players don’t have the best reputation when it comes to physical fitness, and let’s face it: spending hour after hour pwning the face off of internet dragons may give us Conan-like right hand and mouse finger strength, but it does nothing for our stomachs, legs, and bountiful heinies.

I was making a circuit of the Barrens one evening, picking flowers and thinking to myself, as usual, “You should really be on the treadmill. You put it off yesterday. And the day before that.”

“But I really need more Peacebloom!”

“No, you don’t. You need to go work out.”

“But… but… Auction House monies,” my brain protested.

“Go.”

“No! Peacebloom!! … Forever.”

“Okay, kid; I’ll make a deal with you. Go work out, take the laptop with you, and then you can hit three nodes for every mile you run.”

I went down to the treadmill, opened up my laptop and turned on WoW (to better motivate myself, NOT because I planned to hit three nodes before I even started running), and realized something epic.

It looked like… maybe… the laptop would fit in the magazine holder.

I tried it. It did.

No. Way.

But how could I use my mouse? No way would I be able to use the built-in swipe pad. I can’t even do that when I’m standing still. I hunted around and found a shoebox top, cut it (with my teeth, I’m ashamed to say) to fit around the control console and rest on the hand rail, and strapped the entire contraption down with duct tape. It wasn’t pretty, but a few experimental sweeps of the wireless mouse showed me the mouse would at least track.

I got on the treadmill. I turned it up to one mile an hour. I logged into WoW.

It worked.

For the first five minutes or so, it was weird. I couldn’t type without almost falling off, but the mouse situation was fine.

In ten minutes I was using my keyboard shortcuts.

In thirty minutes I was typing.

I cranked the belt speed up to 1.5 mph and started to farm herbs. I denuded the hills of Southern Barrens and took a flight, hit the Auction House, switched characters and mailed myself some gold, moved around heirlooms, attacked some mobs, leveled twice, and then remembered that I was still on the treadmill.

I’d been on it for over three hours, burned over 400 calories and walked almost 5 miles. I hadn’t even noticed I was walking for most of it.

These days, I’m a solid 2 mph girl, and I can easily run PUGs and level while walking, though I haven’t dared raid yet. I upgraded my beloved shoebox mouse pad with a hard piece of plastic (still duct-taped to the handrail; I haven’t gone entirely upscale) topped with an ergonomic mouse pad with gel wrist wrest. I only let myself farm or solo level if I’m walking, and I get at least five miles a day in.

I’ve demanded a TrekDesk for Christmas, and I really don’t think I’ll ever go back to just…. sitting. I feel great, I’ve lost weight without trying in the least, and best of all, that nagging voice that tells me I should be doing something productive instead of playing WoW has vanished forever.

HOW TO PLAY WARCRAFT ON A TREADMILL

You’ll need:

  • A Treadmill: You can actually get them quite reasonably- below $800- if you shop local sales, and Amazon.com regularly offers free shipping on new ones.
  • A Holder for Your Laptop or Monitor: Laptops are much easier to deal with, of course, but you could set up your main computer with only a bit more effort. For laptops, try the SurfShelf ($40), the Amazon Treadmill Book Holder ($14), or just see if your laptop fits in the existing magazine rack like I did. For monitor setups, see below.
  • A Mousepad Setup: This was the hardest thing for me to get together, as you really have to look at your machine and see where you can add a flat surface. My shoebox top actually worked quite well, though I’d recommend that no matter what you do- a thick piece of cardboard, maybe a small piece of plywood cut to fit around the console if you’re handy- you superglue an inexpensive mouse pad with wrist rest ($10-15) on top of it. I found I really tended to lean on my wrist as I walked to steady myself, unconsciously, and the wrist rest helps prevent that. Plus, the mouse pad starts to slide if you don’t glue it down.

People are only just starting to look at the concept of walking at a very slow pace while you’re on a computer. Luckily, it’s been around long enough that there are, in fact, complete walking-and-working computer assemblies being produced already. Be warned, though: the sticker shock of these things is pretty severe, and you absolutely don’t need to get one.

To maximize the comfort and ergonomic function of typing or using a mouse, your forearms should be parallel to the floor and elbows bent at a  90′ angle. If you find yourself really getting into walking while you play (or even work!), one of these might be for you:

  • The TrekDesk: $479. This sucker fits over your existing treadmill and provides truly staggering amounts of desk space. Plus the edge is padded (in case of Sindragosa-like spasms), the desk height moves up and down, and Amazon is currently offering free shipping on it.
  • The Steelcase Walkstation: $4,099. This option is pretty pricey, but it includes the treadmill, which is attached to the desk. It also includes a vertical mount for a flat-panel screen. That’s right. You can bring the good computer over and really go to town!

I hope this information encourages you to at least try walking while you play, no matter how uncoordinated or lazy you feel. Truly, it’s so easy to balance even my grandmother could do it, and you won’t even notice the miles going past.

And hey, it’d be nice to start hearing, “Man, he’s pretty fit. Must play World of Warcraft.”

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News You Can Use: Eine Kleine Nachtlinkage

The week of endless travel is almost at an end, after which we’ll return you to your regularly scheduled programming. Until then, enjoy a small sampling of some of the excellent WoW articles posted this week:

Old School WoW: In this new-ish series, author Adam Holisky revisits old patches, walking us through some of the long-forgotten changes wrought by the old patches. Wonderfully weird. Weirdly wonderful.

If You Could: I love Machinima, but this new one from Druidboyz is in a class of awesome all by itself.

Soloing 5-Man Content As Shadow: Fox Van Allen never disappoints, bringing you lull lulz and sick Photoshop skills in equal measure. Plus, tell me you’re not going to offspec your way to BC dungeon master now.

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The Disc Priest Face Pull (A How-To Guide)

Step 1

Enter ToC 10 with your guild mates. Accidentally doze off during the explanations of the fight (hey, you’re not a DPS!).

Step 2

Penance your way to the Twin Valk’yr fight.

Step 3

Sneak out to the bathroom when the fight is explained and come back just in time to hear what color of bubble you should be bathing in.

Step 4

Run frantically in confusion towards the appropriately colored bubble right next to the boss.

Step 5

Greet the Twin Val’kyr you’ve just pulled with a hearty hello.

Step 6

Wipe.

Step 7

Acquire your new guild nickname, “Lerooooooy Jenkins!”. Change your title to the appropriate ‘Jenkins’ subheading in perpetuity.

Step 8

Enjoy the power of your new position by reveling in requests that you ‘Jenkins this boss’ every single time you encounter one in guild raids.

Congratulations! You are now the face-pullin’-est priest in your realm!

Success!

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Self Discipline: The Mark Of The Facebeast

... But I Don't WANNA Be Ubiquitous!

Like many, many, many of us, I am utterly nonplussed at having discovered that only through the magic of Facebook will we be able to utilize the cross-realm friends list coming out in 3.3.5.

I do not care for everyone to see my grown-up, official email address – you know, the one that was so secure you used it to log in to your account- just because they happen to be friends of friends of friends of some decent tank I ran with once and friended.

To avert disaster and maintain some semblance of privacy for those I friend and those who friend me, I have implemented a clever workaround (well, I think it’s clever; more likely everyone’s already thought of it and I’m the last one disembarking the short bus as usual):

  1. Create a new, anonymous email address from a fine establishment like Yahoo, gmail, or Hotmail
  2. Change your Blizzard login email address to the new anonymous one (and get an authenticator, yeah?)
  3. Create a new Facebook page with your new anonymous email address
  4. Amuse yourself by guessing what your main’s favorite quotes might be

The absolutely immense bonus of this, beyond the simple expedient of protecting your privacy, is that it is THE funniest thing ever to set up a Facebook page for your main character. That alone makes it worth the price of admission!

Those of you who wish to leave slavish messages of love upon Disciplinary Action’s Facebook wall may now do so by searching for ‘Liala Jenkins’.

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Self Discipline: The Politics of Dancing

Grace Procs On The Two-Step, Fool!

I have a major problem: I can’t dance.

Oh, I can bust out a serious foxtrot when the need arises, using my actual real-life people feet, but I can’t for the life of me [Safety Dance] with that damnable, damnable, damnable Heigan in Naxxramas.

Every single time it starts, I say to myself: “You’re a physicist. You get paid to understand this stuff. You can sure as hell do it in WoW, dammit.”

And then I wipe the raid.

I’m appalled at myself but unable to curb the self-destructive tendencies. As a player, I’m enchanted at the challenge, but as a member of a larger group I’ve become the Heigan-pariah, Unclean By Association. I’ve never finished Naxx because- for obvious reasons- no one will let me go with them. Server PUGs, initially seduced by my gear score and enthusiasm for the Plague Wing of Naxx, have learned the bitter lesson that I am not to be trusted.

YouTube videos have been viewed. Diagrams have been consulted. I’ve cut out those paper feet and pasted them on my screen with associated arrows indicating when I must proc haste and when I must do-si-do. Nothing, and I mean nothing, seems to clear this mental block.

I tried once again last night with nine other people who now hate me, and I finally realized that I need professional help.

Can you help me, gentle reader? Teach me to dance!

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Patch 3.3.3 Breaks Priest, Fails At Life

Goddammit.

THE NEW PATCH is (moderately) filled with (minor-league) excitement, but many of us can’t enjoy the pew-pew deliciousness of Random Battlegrounds as we’re stuck on the loading screen.

This Windows workaround has been working for me, though it requires shutting down WoW and re-application every time you zone into a city:

  1. Hit the ‘Start’ menu and select ‘Run’
  2. Type ‘cmd’
  3. When your command console pops up, type ‘ipconfig/flushdns’

If you get locked out again, shut down and lather, rinse, repeat.

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