Why Flexbar won’t likely be done by 1.11


As some of you might know, I am one of the people working on Flexbar, one of the most versatile, powerful, and – admittedly – most cryptic to configure, ActionBar replacements out there. With Flexbar, users can define up to 120 buttons, bars, and button groups, which can react dynamically to system and world events. For a Rogue, for example, it’s very easy to bind Sinister Strike, Riposte, Eviscerate, and Cheap Shot/Ambush/Backstab to one key, and execute the right function based on wether you’re facing or behind a target, stealthed or not, and how many CPs are available. It’s even possible to make a button react differently in PvE and PvP, or to swap stances, weapon sets, ot clothing, before executing a move. Buttons can grow, shrink, show, fade, and move, based on what happens. It’s VERY powerful. And, well, it’s VERY dependent on knowing what’s going on.

1.11 ([Unofficial Patch Notes] [Official Patch Notes]), like every patch, introduces changes to LUA and the API, as well as to events and how AddOns “see” the world. And that’s all fine and good, after all, we have test realms for coders and raiders to see what’s new.

Or do we?

We don’t. As I write this, I am 120 more minutes in a queue to hop onto the PvE version of Blizzard’s PTR. Ahead of me, more than 4,000 people. All of which are willing to test? All of which write code? Bull! None of which does either.

There’s first the typical Barrens population. You’ll find them in the Barrens, again. Only this time Barrens chat is even worse. Even with Chuck Norris filter, hundreds of ignores, and /5 turned off, it’s almost unberable. Tip #1: testers and addOn developers can not be found in the Barrens.

Secondly the “eight year old brain in a 30 year old body” syndrome. Nubs, incapable of leveling a char above 60, join the PTR on premades to experience Tier 2. It’s pathetic, scary, and very, very, wrong, if – all the wile having LuaSlinger and FlexConfig open – I get ambushed by three 60 Rogues in Bloodfang, and still emerge victorious – on my copied main, which has barely 5/8 Felheart. Tip #2: Paint doesn’t fix a rotten facade – if you sucked on your main, don’t think Tier 2 will in some way make you powerful. You’ll still suck.

That’s 5,000 dumbos at any given time. And maybe 20 testers and 40 coders. If we didn’t give up, not willing to wait in queue for two hours. Your AddOns won’t likely be ready for 1.11, and all because you wanted to see that end-game gear without having to raid, or new content a miniscule 3 weeks early. Chances are, you’ll be playing 1.11 without CTRaid, without Flexbar, and without GEM, because … well … us AddOn authors couldn’t get on.

6 Comments so far

  1. Dirtyboy (unregistered) on May 28th, 2006 @ 2:16 am

    Got on PvE test server late Friday night to go have a look at the Argent Dawn changes and lo and behold, 90% of the people on were dueling or PvPing. Tried to talk to Argent Dawn NPC in IF and some dillhole rogue runs up and ganks him. It was like a 2nd grade classroom when the teacher calls in sick…

    This is what Light’s Hope Chapel looked like when I got there: http://img103.imageshack.us/img103/4695/stoopid11kg.jpg

  2. Jonas M Luster (unregistered) on May 28th, 2006 @ 2:45 am

    Dude, if there’s ever been a better way to describe EXACTLY my beef with the test servers than your picture, I don’t know. Thank you so much for taking it.

  3. Lothar (unregistered) on May 28th, 2006 @ 4:10 pm

    The rogue functionality you describe borders on exploitative but is clearly for the lazy or simple-minded player. Blizzard is slowly beginning to squeeze the life out of this bot-like performance enhancing addons. About time….

  4. Jonas M Luster (unregistered) on May 29th, 2006 @ 2:08 am

    You are aware, that this functionality is available (albeit much harder to configure) in the basic UI you get with your standard action bar? You are aware, that truly lazy addons, such as Decursive, are not only supported by Blizz, the developer has the phone numbers of Blizz devs to get help?

    And as to lazy or simple minded, why dontcha copy your char to the PTR and I’ll show you how lazy and simple minded I am. It takes a lot of balls to make that blanket statement, back it up. I’ll use a stock WoW UI, using only Blizzard supplied mechanics, and we’ll see if your movement matches your mouth.

  5. Squiggle (unregistered) on May 30th, 2006 @ 1:11 am


  6. Jonas M Luster (unregistered) on May 30th, 2006 @ 2:10 am

    Since I am getting IMs and in-game tells … to complain about an addOn, which requires the user not only to learn LUA but also to understand environmental issues to program it, as “lazy” is the equivalent of telling someone who spent a few months building a Motorcycle from scrap parts that he’s just too lazy to walk. Especially since all those functionalities (albeit not programmable in LUA) are already available in the stock UI.

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