AddOns in Review: Introducing Damage Meters Benchmarking Series

Author’s note: I have quit playing World of Warcraft before release of patch 3.0.5. The content of this post is most likely out of date.

EDIT: Readers wanting a roundup of which meters work in patch 2.4 will find it here.

Last night, one of my guildmates was thinking about getting a new damage meter addon, and asked what the best was. The answers were predictable:

  • “I use the original DamageMeters”
  • “Nah, DamageMeters is flawed, get SW Stats”
  • “Recount rocks and is most accurate”
  • “Nah, Recount is a memory hog, stick to SW Stats”.

And so on. Before one of you asks, he went for SW Stats after that convo :)

Anyway, this got me thinking. We all know the above stereotypes, but how much of it is true? While patch 2.4 should bring a lot of goodness for all damage recorders, I started wondering just how accurate in-game damage meters are, in the current state.

So I thought, to heck with it, why don’t I just run them all against each other?

This got this series started. In the coming posts on the matter (which will take several days to unfold), I will run a couple of benchmarks between several damage meter addons and post the findings here. For the purpose of establishing a baseline, I will use WWS. LoggerHead will take care of stuff like log distance for me.

The following AddOns will be benchmarked:

The test is aimed at checking the results by sticking as much as possible to the out-of-the-box experience, the idea being that we look at the results a novice user could get within a couple of seconds of loading that addon.

Under this obviously biased criteria, I have renounced benchmarking Assessment on top of the others, simply because I have never been able to make it work for me in a simple way. As my readers will know, I’m not the brightest crayon in the box, and while it looks absolutely terrific in terms of depth it can provide, it is simply too complicated for me. Or rather, it is too complicated that I’m willing to invest the time learning how to make it work since I have been happy with an other tool for a long time.

EDIT: Thinking about this more, I realized that this is a little bit of a cheap cop out. I cleared up my WTF files and included the latest Assessment revision.

And on that matter, for the sake of full disclosure, I had been using DamageMeters initially, and eventually switched over to SW Stats in the course of 2006 or so, and more or less stuck to that one ever since.

The benchmarks I plan to run include the following:

  • Solo play
  • Group play without synching
  • Group play with synching

I will focus on the damage dealt and healing done breakdowns, and keep an eye on memory usage before and after a test run.

I have already started collecting some data, and some results may come as a surprise. Check this space for updates during the coming week, the solo play benchmarks shouldn’t be too long before appearing.

Part I: Solo play, level 70 paladin
Part II: Solo play, level 13 hunter
Part III: Solo play, level 60 warlockPart IV: Coming Soon EDIT: For lack of adequate guild support, and due to the imminence of patch 2.4, the group tests will have to wait to see whether this benchmark still has a point post-patch

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4 Responses to AddOns in Review: Introducing Damage Meters Benchmarking Series

  1. Joel (1 comments) says:

    I’m looking forward to seeing your results.

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