Monday, August 28, 2006


I've done it... I've descended into madness. I've created my first World of Warcraft mod. It's called Gyro, short for Get Your Raid On. It sits lurking in the background, waiting until you join or leave a raid, and then it springs into action, executing a predefined macro of commands. I use it to switch my UI around depending on whether I'm in a raid or not. (I don't need to know my mana regeneration rate and my threat level when I'm walking around town.) But, I suppose you could customize it to just /yell "For the Horde!" every time you join a raid too.

All in all, I spent four or five hours on the project, going from no knowledge to a basically-completed mod. In that time, I was able to become competent in the scripting language (Lua—not sure why they couldn't have stuck with JavaScript or something more standard), learn the core ins and outs of a World of Warcraft mod, and use a smattering of the standard function library. There's a bit that Blizzard could have done way-back-when to streamline the process of starting out a little, but overall, I think they've done a pretty good job at creating an extensibility model, or an exemplary job considering it's "just a game."

Debugging sucks, though. It's the typical Neanderthal style of debugging—make changes, reload everything, try it out, observe problems, and repeat. Then again, I wasn't really expecting to be able to attach Visual Studio to the thing.

So, that was fun. I had a good time getting my feet wet, so I think that sometime in the future, I'll try my hand at something a little more complicated (and useful). I've already got the basic idea planned out...


Matthew Johnson said...

Y'know, I read a certain message board that could use 5 hours of feature request implementation... ;-)

Travis said...

Ah, the joys of always having enough things to do to fill a hundred times how much free time you actually have.