Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Beginner's Guide to Macros



What are they? Macros are a tool enabled in many video games that let you string commands together to a custom button.
Why use them? Generally they allow for some optimal customization. This works well in a game like Rift which does not allow add-ons but has a ton of abilities to let you make some shortcuts to save on keybinds or help with healing targeting.
Where do I find this option? In Rift, you can either go to the Menu options and bring up the Macro menu or simply type /macro. You will see a list on the side of several empty icon boxes. You click on one, rename the title and then in the area beneath you can write your macro.
How do I write a macro? Macros are fairly simple in concept. The most basic of them is "cast [Ability Name]". So if I wanted to write a macro to cast Healing Breath, I would simply write
cast Healing Breath
Each line of a macro is separated by a line break. So with multiple commands to chain them you would write:
cast Healing Breath
cast Healing Grace
So I can chain my entire rotation to one button? Neato Burrito! Not exactly. You can not chain multiple abilities to one button press. Nor can you chain a rotation exactly. What you can do is set a priority list by cooldown. Basically in the macro above, Healing Breath has an 8 second cooldown. It will attempt to cast Healing Breath and if it is able to, it will. If not, it will move to the next spell on the list, Healing Grace. It will ONLY cast Healing Grace if Healing Breath is on cooldown.
How does this work for Reactive abilities or follow ups?: Pretty much the same way.
cast Rising Waterfall
cast Power Strike
This will attempt to cast Rising Waterfall first. When you start a fight you won't be able to since RW is a reactive ability. So it will cast Power Strike. The next time you press the button, you will able to cast RW though because it is now enabled by you using PS.
cast Path of the Wind
cast Power Strike
Because Path of the Wind has no restrictions, this macro would only recast that over and over.
cast Power Strike
cast Path of the Wind
This however, will cast PS if you are in melee range, but cast Path of the Wind if you are out of melee range.
So...about targets? You are able to also customize targeting with macros. There are a variety of things but they use an "@" modifier to indicate it is a target.
cast @self Healing Breath
If you macro it, the macro would always cast Healing Breath on yourself, no matter who you have targeted. Other options are:
@lasttarget [Your Last Target]
@mouseover [The target your cursor is over. Great for healing]
@focus [Your focus target]
Is there anything else I can do with them? Lots! But this is a beginner's guide. Macros can do a lot of things, such as set targets, set focuses, marks. There are some guides on the official forum if you get more curious.
Edit: My reddit editing fu is kinda bad. Sorry if this looks messy.

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