In raids and dungeons a pet can have to avoid several things: “standing in fire”, the cower bug, generating threat, pulling adds. Why not avoid more than one of those things at the same time? I use pet attack macros for that, and cram them full of commands (well, so long as the macro remains intuitive, useful and does not conflict with itself functionally).
I thought I’d write about these macros since I find them useful and rarely see complex pet macros discussed. A few notes before we get into the body, though:
- If you are not familiar with what macros are or what they do check out these links before continuing further: an intro to macros and how to make one.
- Keep in mind while reading that these macros were built around my playstyle; if they don’t fit yours, you can modify them or not use them.
- These macros are made for the dps pet that does the most DPS regardless of spec these days; a wolf.
The first macro is a sort of “send it in and it’s good to go” set of commands.
/petautocastoff Call of the Wild
/petautocaston [group] Cower; [nogroup] Growl
/petautocastoff [group] Growl; [nogroup] Cower
/petautocastoff [group] Dash
/petautocaston [nogroup] Dash
This macro first sends your pet in to attack (/petattack) and then modifies its autocasts (/petautocaston, /petautocastoff). The macro turns off Call of the Wild (so you can trigger it in conjunction with rapid fire and/or a trinket), and sets Cower, Growl and Dash according to whether you are in a group or solo. It is nice to have these abilities set with one macro, especially since it works around the cower bug so neatly. It also has an advantage of transitioning your pet between soloing and raiding with little attention required. The abilities that are not modified in the macro are the ones I leave on the pet bar and generally do not change. For example, I leave Furious Howl on autocast on the pet bar (though I may have to rethink that)[ed. note: I have a bet with Frostheim about this].
The macro below is nice for fights like Obsidian Sanctum. It sends your pet in to attack if used normally and modifies several pet autocasts for raiding. However, if you hold down any modifier key (like shift or control) and hit it again, it tells the pet to stop what it’s doing and run back to you really fast. As such, it intuitively shares the functions of both sending your pet in to battle and calling it back (if you want). /petfollow will work the same as /petpassive here if you want to leave your pet in defensive mode, but keep in mind that if you keep attacking your pet will go back to it too and that isn’t good for things like lava waves. The Dash component of this macro probably won’t work if you don’t have a point in Go for the Throat (your pet won’t have enough focus to use Dash because it will be putting everything it has into its focus dump). Even then, you may hit a crit dry spell at the time you want to recall your pet, leaving your pet with no focus for Dash (though the /petpassive [mod] will still work).
/cast [mod] Dash
/petautocastoff Call of the Wild
Note that the following macro will perform the same recall-at-high-speed function:
#showtooltip Master's Call
/cast [target=player] Master's Call
I prefer Dash for the recall, though, because (1) Master’s Call has a longer cooldown and because (2) its root-breaking function is wasted when you might need it later (depending upon the fight). I think that having a Dash recall will be all the more important for PvP come 3.3 once pets can’t take PvP AoE anymore, yet you will still have the incentive to save your Master’s Call for movement-impairing effects.
The next macro is a variation on the theme of the first macro and adds in the recall function of the second:
/cast [modifier:shift] Dash
/petautocaston [modifier:ctrl] Growl; Cower
/petautocastoff [modifier:ctrl] Cower; Growl
/petautocastoff Call of the Wild
/petautocaston [modifier:ctrl] Dash
Hitting the macro with no modifier will send the pet in to attack and set it to raid autocastings (or, it sets it to my pet’s raid autocastings). Holding ctrl while hitting it will switch the pet’s autocasting’s to more solo-friendly settings while still sending it in to attack. Holding shift and hitting it will perform the recall function suggested above in the second macro.
Next is a macro for changing tracking including some script that I am shamelessly copying from Kanandi over at the EJ forums. I changed the macro a bit to make it run smoother than she states, but the script line for tracking is all hers.
/run for i=1,GetNumTrackingTypes() do local n, t, a, c = GetTrackingInfo(i); if string.find(n, UnitCreatureType("target")) then if t~=GetTrackingTexture(i) then SetTracking(i); end end end
This macro sends your pet in and then changes your tracking to the type of mob you are attacking. This is useful because most builds typically include Improved Tracking and a hunter may sometimes be tracking something other than an Improved Tracking type (like mailboxes). The macro only uses 199 of the 255 allowed characters, and so you should feel free to customize it a bit. Keep in mind that you have to copy the script exactly; one character off can screw it up and give you an error message.
- I use similar macros to the first two for pvp’ing and extreme soloing, adding or taking out abilities as necessary. I will throw a “/cast Pin” or “/cast Web” with a modifier after /petattack for pvp, for example.
- Keep in mind that you don’t have to have /petattack as part of these macros. I offer them mainly as examples of (1) how to gain more control over what your pet is doing and (2) how to make pet macros multifunctional. If you leave it out, you can still use these to manage autocasts, tracking, and pet returns.
- These macros will only work until 3.3, because cower will have a different function then.
- While we’re on the subject of macros, I’d like to add that they can be used for all sorts of things. Here are a couple I use for the Argent Tournament that I thought might ease your daily grind.
For the Flaming Spears quest:
#showtooltip Flaming Spears
/tar [mod] Kvaldir Deepcaller; North Sea Kraken
/use Flaming Spears
And for that sword quest in Grizzly Hills:
/tar Lake Frog
/use Warts-B-Gone Lip Balm
There are other pet macros than those discussed here of course, but that subject is a bit bigger than the scope of this post. For a good list of hunter macros, see this site. For a good guide to macro syntax, see this Wowwiki page. And, of course, if you have other ideas for or approaches to pet attack macros, please include them in a comment below.