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Thread: Advanced Combat Tracker (DPS Meter, Spell Timer, etc.) with Rift. ReadItIWorkedHard.

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    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Exclamation [Tutorial] Advanced Combat Tracker (DPS Meter, Spell Timer, etc.) with Rift.

    Foreword: Give me your thoughts, your clothes, and your motorcycle after reading this post. I want them all.

    I ran out of room in the main post, so see my second post for updated goodies before proceeding.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Some Links:

    Advanced Combat Tracker
    • You can grab the client and Rift plugin here.

    EQ2Flames Advanced Combat Tracker Forum
    • For discussion.

    Trion's Policy On Addons
    • Quote Originally Posted by Captchadown View Post
      They just added a /dumpraid and /dumpgroup command that dumps your group and or raid info to an XML file. Why would they do this? So you can write a parser for things like DKP, attendance, etc. If Trion didn't want parsers, they wouldn't have an ingame function to create the logs.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Ghostlight here.

    There's been a lot of hubbub about the implementation of a Trion made DPS meter in the game. I'm here to tell you we probably don't need to put them through that. Furthermore, those that want a DPS meter can try using this setup. It took me some figuring out and it'll probably still take you some figuring out, but I'm willing to share what I've learned.

    I take no credit for the creation of this program. The guys that made it are great and I encourage anyone that gets significant use out of it to donate to them.

    You probably want to see what I'm getting you into, so here's a screenshot I was able to take outlining the major ACT overlay features you'll be looking at. Personally, I haven't done too much with the external ACT program myself. It can do all that and a bag of chips, but for now I just wanted a quick way to monitor my own DPS and abilities.



    High Resolution version. You probably want to just click on this instead.

    Important Community Pro Tips:

    Quote Originally Posted by Veckna View Post
    You need to run in fullscreen windowed mode rather than fullscreen to get the miniwindow to display over the game.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Instructions, I hope. Important parts are bolded if you're an impatient nancy pants:[/U]

    A reminder: I'm just getting it running for you. If you want to play with all the gizmos and gadgets, that's cool. These instructions get you parsing and nothing more.

    ACT was originally made for EverQuest II. Eventually, Age of Conan and Aion plugins were made for it. Most recently, a Rift plugin was finally released. I'll be straight with you, I don't really know how the plugin helps ACT run with Rift, but whatever, get it.

    When you start up ACT it's going to demand you show it your EverQuest II folder, because you obviously play the latest installment of EverCrack. I mean, who wouldn't? Don't worry about it; you can just escape out of it.

    Hit up the Plugin tab. Browse for the Rift.cs plugin you downloaded and load it up. Make sure you enable it.

    Again, it still thinks you're playing EQ2. Hit up the General Options tab and click Import Settings. You may have a Rift config file you can load up. If not, don't worry about it. Moving on.

    So hopefully you're in-game right now. On your character, type /combatlog. [B]You'll see a message saying you've enabled combat logging. Combat logging creates a text file in your primary Rift folder that contains all of your combat data. From wimpy glancing blows to blocking like a little girl, it's being tracked, you big sissy.

    Tab back out and hit up the About tab on Advanced Combat Tracker. It took me awhile to find out this is where you select which Combat Log you want to track because the About tab is where I go to learn about the author and possibly the program purpose, which I usually already know. Regardless, navigate and select the Combat Log text file that was created in your Rift folder.

    You good so far chief? Good. Now here's an important part: Unlike EQ2, Rift can't tell who you are very well.

    Primary Option for Player Detection:

    Creub from the EQ2Flames forum recommended this to start tracking allies:

    Quote Originally Posted by Creub View Post
    Actual, Rift tracks your own name better than EQ2. Unless you are using my first version of the plugin (or someone elses), it should be able to track your own combat only (or you group, or raid). This isn't enabled by default though.

    Inside the plugin tab, you got a subtab on that page which is named the same name as the plugin. In that window/tab, you can control more specific things for the plugin.

    Ally check:
    First tick: Only include from your own raid/group and self
    Second tick: Only include action from/to yourself
    Third tick: Only include action from/to yourself and your group.

    The strict filtering = Limit all action to actual coming from or towards you/group/raid. If someone heals the mob outside of the you/group/raid, this will not be parsed.
    Non-strict filtering = If someone else is hitting the mob (That isn't in your group/raid), it will start tracking that person inside that encounter. Thus, you will see the whole picture towards the mob you are hitting. This is ok in normal cases, but when you went into rifts solo, the log would pretty much log everything, due to aoe's and shareable mobs.
    Optional Workaround to Record Data:

    Go to the Selective Parsing tab and bubble "Only Record Combat Actions Taken By/Against Listed.
    Check off Do Not Show Enemy Combatants In Tables.


    Add your player name to the list.
    You can also add anyone that's in your group if you want to track their DPS. You need to do this every time you want to track a new person.


    At this point, you can try beating up something in-game and seeing if it's tracked in your Main tab. It'll be fairly obvious if it's working.

    Now for the home stretch:

    On the top right of the ACT window there are two buttons: Show Mini and Show Timers.

    Mini is your "DPS Meter". Timers is your "Spell Timer". You can click them to activate them and change their dimensions. If you right click the buttons in ACT while they're visible it'll remove those ugly frames. Found that trick out just today. Move them where you like. They'll stay "on top" no matter what program you're running; that's how you're able to use them in Rift even though it's another program.

    Hit up General Options.

    Extend Mini Parse.
    Check off Minimize Application to Parse window.
    Make sure Mini Parse - Always on Top is checked off.
    Same for Allow Mouse Clicks to Pass Through is checked.
    Same for Align Text to Appear In Columns on Cell Contents.


    I recommend setting window opacity to 50%. White font, black background. It's easier on the eyes in-game. I also recommend you set your font to Calibri, Regular style, size 8 font.

    Extend Miscellaneous.
    Check off Minimize ACT to Tray Icon.

    Extend Text-Only Formatting.


    Clipboard Export Formatting is what you'll get when you try to paste results to your chat. When in-game all you have to do is hit Ctrl+V and it should paste the most recent parse automatically. For now, I have this set up on a per encounter basis. It's good for watching short term progress and being able to display just the boss fights; especially if they're tank and spank.

    Mini Window Formatting is your "DPS Meter" Mini window.

    The cool thing about this is that you can paste different numbers from what you show in your window. For example, my DPS window shows individual DPS and no overall damage. But my clipboard paste could show DPS as well as overall damage. I'm really only concerned about DPS in combat, so no need for the extra clutter at that point in time.

    I'm going to give you four things to paste into the four text boxes in Text-Only Formatting. You can change them later if you want, but it's a basic DPS meter/clipboard export text setup you can use.

    Paste in Clipboard Export Formatting: Allies Prefix -
    {title}: ({duration}) - {EXTDPS} DPS - {damage} DMG |
    Paste in Clipboard Export Formatting: Per Player -
    {NAME12} - {EXTDPS} DPS |
    Paste in Mini Window Formatting: Allies Prefix -
    Allies: ({duration}) | {damage} DMG
    Paste in Mini Window Formatting: Per Player -
    {n}{NAME12} | {EXTDPS} DPS


    Duration is the encounter duration.
    EXTDPS is short term DPS (per encounter, I believe).
    Damage is damage done.
    Name12 means it's your character name up to 12 characters.

    Check off Filter Out Combatants with Spaces in their Name.

    Last but not least, we need to access the Spell Timer options.

    Bring up your Spell Timer via the Show Timer button on the ACT program. Right click to toggle the frames on, then right click the Spell Timer window itself.

    <Spell N="Fragmentation Bomb" T="10" R="T" A="F" WV="0" RD="F" M="T" Tt="" FC="-16776961" RV="0" C="Saboteur" RC="F" />
    This is an example of my Fragmentation Bomb ability cooldown timer you saw in the screenshot. In XML format. I'm not really sure how you import it, but I'll try to use it to explain.

    First, add your name to the Restricted Timer White List again. For every ability you make, make sure Restrict Timers To a White List is checked off. This will make sure it's tracking only your abilities.

    • Name the spell Fragmentation Bomb.
    • Timer Period in Seconds: Whatever the cooldown is. I'm fully specced into it, so the cooldown is 10 seconds for me as a level 7ish Saboteur.
    • Warning Period: When it starts flashing at you.
    • Remove timer from view at: When it's removed from the list. I put 0 seconds.
    • Show Radial Timer Display: I always turn this off. Otherwise you get a pie chart timer thing.
    • Allow Timer Mods to Affect This: I have no idea. Just leave it on.
    • Display in Panel A: Check this off. You can have two separate spell timer windows, but for now we're only using A.
    • Display in Panel B: Unchecked.
    • Category: Put your class name. It'll keep it organized.
    • Restrict to category zone or mob: Unchecked. No.


    You should have a working ability timer. Like I said in the screenshot, for stacking DoTs it's a little hard. I managed to do the same thing as I did for Fragmented Bomb with a Nightblade's Fiery Spike, a DoT that stacks three times. After the initial 3 stacks I just watch the timer and make sure I hit it when I have 1-2 seconds left. It auto refreshes to 10 seconds, the DoT's duration, if it sees the DoT is still up.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Anyway, I hope you enjoy. I'd like to say I can help any problems you may have, but I really can't. I've posted everything I know and I'm as new to this as you are.

    Good luck.

    I really, really hope this post stays up. I worked my *** off.

    -Your bff Ghostlight

    P.S. I'm all for allowing mods so I never have to do this again.
    Last edited by Ghostlight; 02-03-2011 at 10:06 AM. Reason: This post won me the tiara.
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


  2. #2
    RIFT Guide Writer
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    Nice tutorial for this setup, thanks for the info, will try it when the world comes back Friday

  3. #3
    Telaran Vizorqt's Avatar
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    Nicely written. Now to try it in beta 6.
    In darkness lies the real truth.

  4. #4
    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    I Ran Out of Room In The Main Post Part Deux:

    Creub posted an extended list of features, if you're wondering how deep the Advanced Combat Tracker hole goes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Creub View Post
    It is hard to say what ACT does better than the RiftJunkies does, since I haven't tried the latter one yet. But, I can go through a bit of ACT's features.

    Main Parsing:
    * You can view stats for yourself only, everyone around you, or limit to your own group or raid.
    * The parser is in real time. So, it will continuously update while you are fighting.
    * The fights is divided into encounters and "zones", since zone change info isn't available in the log, the zone dividing when you change your character.
    * You can choose yourself which columns you will show up on the screen (table setup)
    * Show detail information about single combatant (or mob) for an encounter. You do get a graph showing your outgoing damage and heal, and your incoming damage and heals. This graph is shown with length of the encounter.
    * Get a pie chart of your abilities used during that encounter, which you can see what type of damage has done the most during that encounter. It also lists dps/hps for that single ability, with min, max, average damage done, number of hits, crit chance.
    * Get a detail chart of all the hits of one ability during one single encounter.
    * A separate log viewer if you want to see the log entry of a specific attack (just right click the ability used, and the log viewer will open the encounter log and show you the entry)
    * A timeline and/or encounter VCR option to graph/function view if you want analyze the encounter more (get a graphical view of who damaged/healed/taken damage who during the encounter)

    Export options:
    * Auto export to clipboard after each encounter
    * You can setup yourself how you want the auto clipboard is exporting yourself (want to export anything else than the dps? You can update a custom setup for it). ACT has an extensive text formatting tool to make this easier.
    * You can manually export custom text formatting by right clicking the encounter and choose text export.
    * "Mini Parser". This is a small window that can be overlayed the game window (if in windowed mode), where you can have a updated view of the encounter in real time.
    * Use your G15 keyboard LCD screen to display information from ACT
    * Export (in real time) to html formatted files to:
    ** Local hd
    ** FTP server (including the charts)
    ** Let ACT act as a Web server to show the result of the parsing (EQ2 has a in-game browser, so it could be displayed there)
    ** Export the data to an ODBC database (which also can be set up to export to an MySQL or other SQL db's)
    * Export (manually)
    ** Export the data to html, xml or SQL format
    ** Export data to a data file for easier import of the encounter on a later stage (no need to reparse it)

    Triggers and timers:
    * Is there a spell\buff\debuff you need to act on? Make a trigger of it. The triggers is based on a RegEx expression that you can add, and then tell ACT what it should do if it trigger it. Then you can make ACT to make a sound (wav file), or it has a build-in TextToSpeach module so you can let a nice female tell you something when it happens.
    * Is there a big aoe that is hitting the group regually? Every 34 seconds? Make a trigger on it, and then you can make a spell timer, which can warn you with sound (or TextToSpeach) when you are close to rehit of the aoe.
    * A window (ala MiniParse) can be overlayed the game window to show the timers graphically.
    * A build-in xml config sharer for these triggers/timers are available. Haven't tried this myself, but it does seem like you can share them via an web page (if you want to share the triggers with your guild).

    ACT Modification:
    * You can make ACT do what you want by making your own plugins (the Rift support is based on this)
    * Look at the ACT Download page for typical plugins for ACT (specific to EQ2, but you can make your own)


    This is some of the functions in ACT, I have probably missed some. But, you get the idea

    There is a few screenshots of the software on the official site, but they are a bit limited and not showing everything what ACT can do.

    Note that Aditu (The author of ACT) is working on a new version of ACT that will take ACT a step away from EQ2, and becoming a more general parser. Although, it will have the same option for EQ2 as it has now, but it will be easier to set up for other games.
    Last edited by Ghostlight; 02-03-2011 at 10:07 AM.
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


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    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Really, I was hoping there would be a little more response. Figuring this stuff out was no easy feat and I know there's an army of DPS meter wielding zealots out there trying to get Trion to add them in. I'm here to help. I'm like the Red Cross.

    The DPS Cross, motorcycle riding Ghostlight of Christmas Future.
    Last edited by Ghostlight; 01-31-2011 at 08:56 PM.
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


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    I thank you for this. I have been wanting to try this parser out but wasn't quite sure how to get it running. =)

  7. #7
    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dakinia View Post
    I thank you for this. I have been wanting to try this parser out but wasn't quite sure how to get it running. =)
    You are so welcome right now. Write back so I can quote your scripted yet believable success story.
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


  8. #8
    Telaran
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    Exclamation Options

    First, excellent write-up. Well done. I've used ACT in the past and have gotten it working with Rift although my setup is a bit different than yours, it works for me.

    An optional program that is much more simple is:

    http://www.riftjunkies.com/category/combat-parser-2/

    However I believe at this point ACT is superior, and it is definately much more extendible. I would always recommend ACT to anyone that is evenly minorly a tech geek because you'll get much more out of it, however if you are looking for a simple way to get a quick look at things, the Riftjunkies parser is ok.

    There are at least two other parsers that are being worked on, however I doubt many will hold up to ACT in terms of overall effectiveness.

    Great job on the post!!! GO GO DAMAGE METERS!!!!!

    Now let's just hope it doesn't get abused. I am personally committing to refuse to group with anyone that abuses the meters.
    Last edited by Captchadown; 01-31-2011 at 09:02 PM.

  9. #9
    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captchadown View Post
    First, excellent write-up. Well done. I've used ACT in the past and have gotten it working with Rift although my setup is a bit different than yours, it works for me.

    An optional program that is much more simple is:

    http://www.riftjunkies.com/category/combat-parser-2/

    However I believe at this point ACT is superior, and it is definately much more extendible. I would always recommend ACT to anyone that is evenly minorly a tech geek because you'll get much more out of it, however if you are looking for a simple way to get a quick look at things, the Riftjunkies parser is ok.

    There are at least two other parsers that are being worked on, however I doubt many will hold up to ACT in terms of overall effectiveness.

    Great job on the post!!! GO GO DAMAGE METERS!!!!!

    Now let's just hope it doesn't get abused. I am personally committing to refuse to group with anyone that abuses the meters.
    Oh yeah. I was told about the RiftJunkies one. Is there an in-game interface? Can you post a screenshot? I'm correct in assuming it doesn't have a spell timer?
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


  10. #10
    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Blood and sweat.
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  11. #11
    Plane Touched SleepingKitteh's Avatar
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    This is gonna get shut down fast. They already said they do not want to support any 3rd person mods.

  12. #12
    Rift Disciple Ghostlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SleepingKitteh View Post
    This is gonna get shut down fast. They already said they do not want to support any 3rd person mods.
    It's not a mod, though; it's an external program. A mod would change something in-game.
    Sunrest (RP-PVP) - RIP
    Seastone (PVP) - Aurane, Rhythe, Kriyn, Narus


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by SleepingKitteh View Post
    This is gonna get shut down fast. They already said they do not want to support any 3rd person mods.
    They openly support parsers by allowing a combat log to be opened up outside of the client. Just like with EQ2, all you have to do is a / command to turn on combat logs. I think it was /combatlog or something along those lines here.
    http://forums.riftgame.com/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=123505&dateline=13087  80325

  14. #14
    Sword of Telara CyclopsSlayer's Avatar
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    Thanks for this! I Have no problem with DPS trackers, just with automations. Will try it out this b6.

  15. #15
    Telaran
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    For a screenshot there is the one one their website that says it all:

    http://www.riftjunkies.com/wp-conten...serUpdate1.jpg

    Very easy interface. But ACT is still better.

    As for this getting shutdown, no one is doing anything wrong. Trion doesn't have to support anything. They give you the information, what you do with it is your business. They decided not to allow mods etc because they don't have an API. They have already mentioned they may in the future add an API so mods/UI/meters etc can be written in game. As a programmer you never make a log unless you fully expect it to be parsed. Trion is no different.

    As for automation, I think this we be addressed by a proper API. It will not be eliminated, because true automation doesn't need an API. Much like Glide.

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