1. #1

    Help managing spells/skills on action bars

    Am I overanalyzing this? The Druid class has four specs. Some spells can only be used in normal form. Other spells can be used in any form but will automatically shift you into another form (i.e. Dash, Might of Ursoc). And then there are form-specific skills/spells.

    I'm using Bartender and have the normal "1 through =" bar, the two bars just above that main bar, and two right bars. It's a basic setup. How in the world do I manage my action bars with such a wide variety of things going on? Do you keep Dash on your cat-only bar or leave it on a bar available in all forms since it may be useful to use while in, say, bear for a quick getaway?

    After a long absence, I'm level 85 and figure that doing random dungeons as Guardian will be the most efficient use of my time to get to 90. I tanked in WotLK so I think I can handle it.

    Given that I'll usually have multiple targets, does this setup make sense? (Using icy-veins advice on keeping thrash up and using mangle and swipe on cooldown)
    Bear form:
    1 - Savage Defense
    2 - Thrash
    3 - Macro that does "/cast Swipe, /cast !Maul"
    4 - Macro that does "/cast Mangle, /cast !Maul"
    5 - Lacerate
    6 - Growl
    7 - Berserk - should this be macroed in somewhere?
    Shift 1 - Prowl
    Shift 2 - Faerie Swarm
    Shift 3 - Berserking (troll racial)
    Shift 4 - Might of Ursoc
    Shift 5 - Innervate
    Shift 6 - Skull Bash
    B4 - Barkskin
    B5 - Mighty Bash
    SB4 - Survival Instincts
    SB5 - Entangling Roots
    Shift E - Nature's Grasp
    Shift G - Dash

    Icy-veins gives the following for single target:
    "Use Mangle Icon Mangle on cooldown (its cooldown has a chance to be reset by some of your other abilities, so you need to watch out for this).
    Keep up the Thrash Icon Thrash bleed (lasts 16 seconds).
    Keep up the debuff provided by Faerie Fire Icon Faerie Fire (lasts 30 seconds).
    Spam Lacerate Icon Lacerate.
    Use Maul Icon Maul only when
    you are under the effect of a Tooth and Claw Icon Tooth and Claw proc;
    you are at or very close to maximum Rage;
    you do not need to use your active mitigation."

    So should I unmacro swipe and mangle so they don't have Maul?

    Ultimately, I'm simply looking to go from 85-90 as a tank efficiently and without my group getting killed.

  2. #2
    Pit Lord Alltat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Scandinavia
    Posts
    2,489
    With a bit of dexterity, having things keybound to 1, ctrl+1, alt+1, and shift+1 shouldn't be a problem. If you move with WASD and don't keyboard-turn (if you do, please stop it) you can bind Q and E to stuff. Plus of course ctrl+Q, alt+Q, and shift+Q. Also don't underestimate the usefulness of binding things to mousewheel up/down. It's not as if you zoom a lot in combat anyway. Coupled with ctrl/alt/shift and the middle mouse buttons, that's 12 abilities bound on a standard mouse.
    Diplomacy is just war by other means.

  3. #3
    BOOMkin Qieth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen
    Posts
    2,320
    I have my shift + x keys bound to switching hotbars, not individual spells. After that, I always break spells down into main spells and utility, and then I have various keybinds around on extra action bars.

    All of my damage spells are on 1-9. Since I can't properly hit 0, + and ´ on my keyboard, the last three spells on my hotbar are bound to ½ (which is next to my 1), Q and E. I use this on all of my characters.

    For my druid, shift + 2 brings me over to my utility bar - heals, dispels, that sort of thing. My rebirth, for examble, is on ½ on bar 2, so it's easy to get to.

    All other nearby buttons are bound to action bars that are always visible - bottom left/right action bar and that sort of thing. These buttons are R, T, F, G, <, Z and B (I pretty much always use shift + B to open my bags). I also use one button on my mouse for a random thing.

    I think all in all, you want to focus on your main spec when laying out your abilities, and any spells you would use in other forms, you could put on action bars that aren't affected by shapeshifting.
    ~ Armory - Youtube ~
    No longer the King of Moonkins, but perhaps the Prince of Shamans?

  4. #4
    I personally prefer not to have my action bars change in combat, so i unset all of those keybinds.
    I have 5 action bars showing - default, above default leflt, right, and two more on the right side of the screen.

    I have all spells that I could possibly cast (yay for soothe on Thok!) - with any that i cast with an frequency bound to a combo of ctr|alt|shift + 1-6 , rtfgzxcb (i keep V as toggle name plates for when it buggs out and you need to toggle on/off.)

    it is well worth the time to spend to set this up correct.. and ofc.. it will take time to get use to it that during so your performance will be LESS that before (so don't do it right before HC progression, but like over the weekend and run lfr/flex)

    bind things to functions in your mind... so that you can play different chars with the same muscle memory. like for me, r is dispacer beast on my druid, but have it bound to my sprint on paladin. T is solar beam on druid, rebuke on paladin.. so when i need to interrupt I just hit T on whatever char I am on, or move quickly is R.

    when you think about keys as do [X] (cast minor deffensive CD, cast major defensive CD, offsensive CD, movement, CC, interupt, use raid CD) you will see that there is a natural flow that you can use the same keybinds on different chars very easily.

  5. #5
    Pit Lord Alltat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Scandinavia
    Posts
    2,489
    Quote Originally Posted by Qieth View Post
    I have my shift + x keys bound to switching hotbars, not individual spells. After that, I always break spells down into main spells and utility, and then I have various keybinds around on extra action bars.

    All of my damage spells are on 1-9.
    That sounds like a very clumsy setup. Wouldn't it be easier to just keybind the abilities you have on those other bars to shift + 1-9, ctrl + 1-9, alt + 1-9, and similar? Less clicking to do the same thing, and you wouldn't really have to learn any new keybindings, just which modifier corresponds to which action bar.

    I don't personally have any action bars ever visible. Whenever I use something that has a cooldown, WeakAuras is set up so that ability's cooldown appears over my cast bar, then disappears again once it's off cooldown. Minimum screen clutter that way, allowing me to actually see what's happening around me (I also tend to be zoomed out very far, beyond the default max distance).

    Quote Originally Posted by Qieth View Post
    I pretty much always use shift + B to open my bags
    Have you considered simply changing the keybind so that B opens all your bags?
    Diplomacy is just war by other means.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Alltat View Post

    Have you considered simply changing the keybind so that B opens all your bags?
    +1 to this. Having B open all bags is a must. Then Shift B for Bear, Shift C for Cat, Shift A for Aquatic, Shift R(un) for Travel, Shift T for Flight.

  7. #7
    The Lightbringer Ermahgerd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    3,961
    Only thing I would change about your binds is to not bind Maul to your abilities. I believe Maul is the off-GCD ability like Heroic Strike? Really doesn't seem smart to macro that ability into other abilities you are using all the time. As for macroing berserk, idk. It's always best to have every CD you have that can be used in different situations to be bound seperately. Being lazy and macroing everything into one macro is bad.

    As for binds I recommend to start using all other keys on the keyboard, presuming you're moving with WASD I'd recommend start using Q, E, R ,T, F, G, Z, X, C, V + shift. If you still have abilities to bind (which I highly doubt as your only goal is to PvE, which means focus macros aren't necessary whatsoever) you could start using H, Y binds and perhaps the ctrl modifier.

    I myself don't use ctrl/alt modifiers -that- much. Only for abilities I never have to use in combat like applying poisons or going into stealth.

  8. #8
    BOOMkin Qieth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen
    Posts
    2,320
    Quote Originally Posted by Alltat View Post
    That sounds like a very clumsy setup. Wouldn't it be easier to just keybind the abilities you have on those other bars to shift + 1-9, ctrl + 1-9, alt + 1-9, and similar? Less clicking to do the same thing, and you wouldn't really have to learn any new keybindings, just which modifier corresponds to which action bar.

    I don't personally have any action bars ever visible. Whenever I use something that has a cooldown, WeakAuras is set up so that ability's cooldown appears over my cast bar, then disappears again once it's off cooldown. Minimum screen clutter that way, allowing me to actually see what's happening around me (I also tend to be zoomed out very far, beyond the default max distance).


    Have you considered simply changing the keybind so that B opens all your bags?
    B drops my mushrooms. I needed they solo keybind for more keybinds :P

    I really prefer to swap action bars with shift + x, and I suppose its all a matter of preference. It certainly doesn't slow me down in any way
    ~ Armory - Youtube ~
    No longer the King of Moonkins, but perhaps the Prince of Shamans?

  9. #9
    Pit Lord Alltat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Scandinavia
    Posts
    2,489
    Quote Originally Posted by Qieth View Post
    I really prefer to swap action bars with shift + x, and I suppose its all a matter of preference. It certainly doesn't slow me down in any way
    It will slow you down, though not necessarily a lot. If you swap action bars, that means more clicking to do something and so slightly slower reaction times. Where someone else only has to click one key, you have to click one key to swap, one to use the ability, and another to swap back. It may not be big enough that you'll ever notice it yourself, but it is objectively slower. Kind of like healing by targeting people: you can do it if you want, but you should be aware that it is slower than the alternative.
    Diplomacy is just war by other means.

  10. #10
    I see you are a guardian. While I am a four spec freak, too, I tend to stick with one spec and layout. So from the abilities you wrote, you can safely remove innervate (its useless now), and natures grasp (call me bad , but I still haven't had chance to use it). You can also unbind (or relocate) roots, since sofar situations where I needed it were pretty forgiving to not have it keybound. Also remove that maul macro. Unless you gave quite high gear level you wont (most likely) have rage to use it on cd (else you need pretty good healers).

    So id say keep your most used abilities bind to `-5 and q e.
    For me specifically its:
    ` - trash
    1 - swipe
    These two are closer together to ease aoe tanking abit
    2 - maul
    3 - mangle
    4 - sd
    5 - fr
    This is because two is in a kinda weird position for me when it doesn't feel natural for none of my fingers, so I put ability that isn't very needed there, while 3 - 4 - 5 are all quite used and confortable ones.
    q - lacerate
    e - fff
    q for me is again a more comfy ability, while e is kinda ackward and not too comfy, so I put fff since its last on prio list and is not used as much as mangle lacerate trash.
    As for cds, the only one I have bind for fast access is barkskin (especially now with its 30s cd). Its on shift 6.
    My growl is on my side mouse button (while it has two , but one is in not comfy position).
    My other big cds and interrupts are on button 6 to -.
    Anything else is either left for some weird shortcut or is clicked manually, or just not clicked at all.

    Also that priority list on ice veins is off compared to arielles ones which was mangle>lacerate>fff while keeping fff, trash and lacerate debuffs up. Use TaC, FR, SD dependent on situation.

    But in all honesty, if your target content is 85-90, then I recon you can bind your aoe spells to everything, forget all def cds and am and just run and swipe/ trash.
    If the group dies its their own damn fault. While this isn't a correct way to play its definetly the fastest and easiest.

  11. #11
    I have always had issues with keyboard spell binding. I want EVERYTHING at the tip of my finger.

    So instead of dealing with keyboards I picked up the Razer Nostromo and Razer Naga. Now I can easily have all the modifiers(shift, alt, etc) at the click of my right thumb and my fingers on left hand rest on the 15 keys I have bound 1 through = for abilities as well as tab.

  12. #12
    interesting approach vosch, i though of doing the same thing. do you find that in getting the gamepad and the naga increased your play?

  13. #13
    i used to do a lot of this stuff until i got a gaming mouse it made my life a lot easier and if you have the cash kicking around you should invest in one if it sounds like a good idea
    naga gaming mice are the best

  14. #14
    BOOMkin Qieth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Copenhagen
    Posts
    2,320
    Quote Originally Posted by Alltat View Post
    It will slow you down, though not necessarily a lot. If you swap action bars, that means more clicking to do something and so slightly slower reaction times. Where someone else only has to click one key, you have to click one key to swap, one to use the ability, and another to swap back. It may not be big enough that you'll ever notice it yourself, but it is objectively slower. Kind of like healing by targeting people: you can do it if you want, but you should be aware that it is slower than the alternative.
    "Not a lot" is an understatement. In fact it doesn't slow me down enough to have ANY impact on my performance or ability to fulfill my role. Never has. Remember, I've done it like this for many, many years. Sure, objectively, it takes longer to click three times than one, but all of this are fluid motions. My heals being on my shift + 2 hotbar doesn't impede the speed of which I am able to cast them.

    It's all muscle memory by now..
    Last edited by Qieth; 2013-10-17 at 04:17 PM. Reason: Spelilng
    ~ Armory - Youtube ~
    No longer the King of Moonkins, but perhaps the Prince of Shamans?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •