Why do I Need Battle Text? Let Me Tell You!
So last night, I was super ready to raid : flasks, Symbols of Kings, repairs. An exciting new raid week was in store for me and I couldn’t wait!
Then, right from the first pull, something was…off. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it yet, but I was definitely being rubbed the wrong way. A feeling of frustration was growing under my skin. Being the introspective sort, I began to analyze my feelings.
Was it the lag?
No, not lag. While my teammates were complaining about lag, I wasn’t particularly affected.
Was it the rogues talking shop on vent again?
No, they were putting me to sleep earlier with their chatter, but now they were focused on the raid. (You’d think rogues would be the stealthy quiet type, but nooooo, not in my guild!)
Dammit, what’s bothering me?
Hmmm…. Wait- I know! My scrolling battle text isn’t working!
I had to resist the overwhelming urge to tear all my hair out, right then and there, using both hands. Then I fought off the need to break down and sob.
Did you know some paladins can heal without scrolling battle text? Seriously! How is that even possible? Oh, I can go without healing addons if I have to. I can pass on shmexy titan panel that shows me my gold and durability and provides cool icons that help me access the configuration pages of my other addons. I can even play reasonably well without DBM. (Actually, DBM was broken too and it wasn’t bothering me too much.) But scrolling battle text? I NEED NEED NEED it.
(Putting in a cut here…I hate cuts, but for some reason, whenever I use bullets, WordPress screws up my page layout if I don’t cover them up with a cut)
I believe there is a way to configure the default UI to show you some useful information as to what you’re doing, but battle text makes it so easy!
I use Mik’s Scrolling Battle Text. I know there are others out there that do the same thing, but MSBT was the first one I found. I liked it and have been using it since. Right out of the box:
- The healing and damage I’m doing scroll on the right side of my screen. Healing is green numbers, damage is white.
- Little spell icons show next to the healing/damage so I see what ability is going through.
- Next to the healing numbers is the name of the person receiving the heal.
- It shows me how much I’m overhealing for.
Basically, every healing spell I cast looks like this:
Effective heal (Overheal) Person healed [Spell Icon]
I know there are all sorts of fancy things I could do with MSBT to make it even prettier and more convenient, but it’s perfectly usable straight out of the box.
What do I use this for?
- Monitoring my Beacon. While I do track it on Grid, I run with another holy paladin and I can’t always tell which Beacon is mine. Plus, Battle Text will show me if my Beacon isn’t working due to line of sight or range issues.
- Monitoring Overheal. Sometimes if feels like a spell went through but it was overheal. Sometimes it feels like a spell was overheal but it wasn’t. Monitoring overheal helps me choose my spells more effectively as well as give me an idea of how the other healers are doing.
- Noticing healing problems. I know what my Flash of Light typically heals for. Same for Holy Shock, same for Holy Light. If they’re healing for less, there’s something going on. Possibly a debuff I wasn’t expecting. Possibly an equipment manager bug. You wouldn’t believe how many times this has saved me from healing an entire raid with half of my tanking gear on.
And this isn’t just useful for healing! Oh no! When I’m tanking, or when I’m bravely exploring Outland heroics on my lonesome, reading the damage my abilities are doing and the damage I’m taking will also uncover red flags. I can adjust my play to different situations and, um, switch into proper gear should I have neglected to do so during my last spec swap (not that it ever happens, of course!).
So to end my story, as soon as I was able to take 2 minutes during the raid, I quickly logged out and updated MSBT. Then I sighed happily as I admired my battle text. Glorious, glorious battle text.
EDIT: Added a screenshot.