Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Decursive - the other weapon in my healing arsenal

Decursive is one of my favorite addons and there simply isn't a lot to say about it except that it works and it is unobtrusive.

I use Decursive as a paladin and priest (both as healer and dps) and, as the name implies, it greatly simplifies the process of removing debuffs from group members and/or yourself.

Configuring Decursive is trivial or as close to nonexistent as it gets. I would say that in most cases all you need to configure is the position on the screen and perhaps the size of the boxes (I'll get to those in a minute). The ease of setup is due to the fact that the addon detects what class you're playing and automatically configures the appropriate spells for your mouse clicks.

The way it works is simple. You get a series of tiny boxes on the screen, one for each group member. When someone gets a debuff, the corresponding square lights up, either red or blue and a chime sounds. For red, you click with your left mouse button inside the square to remove the debuff. For blue, you use your right button. Simple, right?

Certain classes, like the paladin, who only have a single Decursive spell (Cleanse), will only ever use the left button. Priests have two Decursive spells (Dispel Magic and Abolish Disease) so they will have to use both buttons depending on which debuff is applied.

I have to mention that there's also a small info box displayed above the main boxes which describes the exact debuff which was applied so you can tell at a glance if it is worth dispelling or not. For example, my group members are often affected by the slowing component of Frostbolts from mobs and I won't bother dispelling those.

There's a lot more to Decursive than appears on the surface. There are several ways to configure it but I haven't felt the need to do so. In fact my Addon is in the same pristine configuration as when I first installed it.

One word on positioning. You can obviously put this anywhere on the screen but I like to keep mine right next to my Healbot frames for quick access. I also like to keep the boxes small. Here's a screenshot of my setup.

Some players may claim that such addons are making the game too easy, faceroll and all that. Personally I think that a healer has a great responsibility towards the group and he or she can use all the help they can get. Just remember that you still have to click once for each debuff you wish to dispel.

Here are some of the advantages of using Decursive:

  • it's very lightweight and unobtrusive. Any character who possesses a decursive/cleansing/dispelling type of spell should use Decursive, regardless of role.

  • consider the alternatives: clicking each portrait individually and then clicking the decursing spell or even macros with mouse-overs... To me these are not appealing. Decursive allows for much less mouse movement which can be critical in an encounter.

  • related to the above, the boxes are very close together meaning that you can quickly Decurse multiple people in rapid succession just like that: click, click, click.

  • very importantly, it brings urgent and immediate attention to debuffs that are received, both visually and audibly. Let's face it, regardless how good a healer you may be, you can still miss debuffs in the heat of the battle if you are only watching the character portraits.

  • it frees up your skill bar of critical space and some classes can really benefit from this. I'm looking at you, priests!

  • it frees up time to take care of more pressing matter such as keeping the tank and the rest of the group alive.

  • it works just as well, and provides similar benefits, in solo mode. If I get a debuff I don't have to worry about which spell I need in order to counter it.

  • last but not least, if you are terrified about addons that need a half hour just for the initial configuration, Decursive is not one of them. It just works, right out of the box.

Decursive may not be to everyone's liking and there may be better such addons out there. For my particular needs, this addon is perfect. I would suggest to anyone even mildly annoyed by the task of decursing to give Decursive a try. You'll never look back.


Redbeard said...

I never realized how wonderful Decursive was until I finally DL-ed it myself. Gaining keys back alone is worth it, but that it's so unobtrusive and useful is simply amazing.

It comes in handy for not only the healing classes but for Mages who have debuff removers as well, and it keeps track of what spells you have so you don't have to think about using the right one and blowing mana on the wrong spell. If someone snuck in ahead of you to remove a debuff while you're clicking, Decursive won't call the spell at all.

koalabear said...

Healbot and Vuhdo both have decursive built in somewhat so you really wouldn't need to run two add-ons.

I personally use Vuhdo on all my toons, even the non-healy types. I have it set up on my mage that a left click on a person's box will remove the curse.

Quite nifty :)

Darth Solo said...

@Redbeard glad you like it. Yes, any character who can remove a debuff can and should use it. I use it as a retribution and protection paladin.

@koalabear of course Healbot can be set up to remove debuffs but my problem is that it would take a valuable click combination and I'm not willing to do that. Besides, I'd have to remember which combination to use for the respective debuff. Decursive makes it so easy that it's almost stupid. Red for left click, blue for right. Anyway, as a priest I have more than enough spells allocated to click combinations in Healbot.