Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Rawr, a very simple how to

Well, guys, sorry about the lack of posts. Someone dear to me is going under the knife soon, and it's got me more than a little stressed. Normally when I'm stressed I go for escapism (like playing wow), but this time my brain has decided knitting obsessively is the way to go. I don't pretend to understand this, but at least I've gotten two shawls out of it.

But enough about me. Let's talk about a nifty little tool called Rawr.  Now, I know just enough about this program to be dangerous, but so far it's been very useful to me for optimizing my shadow stuff.  So, I bring you a simple how-to optimize your gear and generate an upgrade list in Rawr.

Step 1: Download and install, or use the nifty beta version that opens in a browser window. I used the downloaded version for all screenshots, so things may look a bit different from the beta.

Step 2: Load your character from the armory. You'll end up with something that looks like this...
That's Lyllea. On the right you can see a list of headgear.  You can use the options above the list to change which slot you're looking at, change how the gear is sorted, or remove gear from certain sources.

Step 3: Go through the gear list, clicking on the green diamond for any pieces you have available to you. I'd suggest sorting alphabetically for this step, it makes the gear easier to find.  Once you're done, head up to tools.  You're going to want to hit optimize and you get...
Now, you have many different things you can optimize for, and you can use more than one, like say dps and cost. I just went with dps. Adjust thoroughness to your liking and hit optimize.

Step 4: After working for a bit, you should get...
On the left is your current gear and on the right is what rawr thinks will give you the best dps from what you told it was available. Most of what it's suggesting for me is some regemming, which leads me to another important option. Edit gemming template. This is under tools, same as optimize, and if you're like me and object to gemming for hit on general principles you can tell rawr not to use certain gems.

Step 5: select the optimized setup.  Then go back to tools and select optimize again.  This time we're building an upgrade list.  This can take a while, so I tend to start it and wander off.  Once it's done, you get...
Except generally not with in the background. This is a list of headslot upgrades, with how much your dps would increase, and if you mouse over them it'll even tell you where they drop. This is great for making a loot priority list, since you can clearly see how much each piece is "worth". And you can even save this list in rawr, or export it.  Or if you're me, you can just jot down the best pieces and where they drop.

And the best part about rawr? It works for multiple specs and classes, can be used by tanks, dps, and healers, and has a multitude of options.  I'm really just scratching the surface here. Of course, always use your common sense as well. Rawr is a great tool, but it can screw up.   Hasn't for me yet, but it can happen, so if it's telling you something odd, go research it before you spend a ton of gold on new gems and enchants.

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