14 January 2012

Method to the UI Madness

My last UI mumbles weren't just out of the blue. :) I had (still have) fairly good reason for all the changes. They come in the name of Aygaren. Remember him? That Tauren pally who wants to L2tank?

The basic goals of adjusting the UI were such: Useable across all characters; maintaining current/already known keybinds and, "field of view." Little things like swapping out different character rotation spells/attacks to match the keybinds sort of came with the territory, minor stuff.

Not that far from the subject, I happen to like reading several specific columns over at WoWInsider. The "Know Your Lore" column tops the list I guess. If I'm particulary working a specific class, there are the class specific columns nice and sometimes helpful to read. One such column I've followed regulary is the "UI of the Week." Each week a player submission is offered up and discussed. It's just been quite useful over the years for seeing different UI set-ups and the add-ons the player used. I'm am pretty sure it was somewhere in one of these year end columns, that I recall a slight mention of a UI trend which moves everything over to the side of the screen, instead of the staple bottom of screen.

Dufit, (my resident Horde testing subject) got the call to come up with something along this line and to determine it's usefulness. Part one, the set-up, got all arranged with only minor adjustments for everything to fit within the KG panel. There was some slight action bar position changes per personal taste, though everything pretty much held it's original settings otherwise. Dufit field tested the set-up, things went along pretty well, so now all the brothers in arms are field testing as well. Here's what the set-up looks like:

Side-based UI set-up with Aygaren
(Since this screenshot; casting bar, player and focus frames have been moved down to sit between chatter and omen frames. Much more visibility)

I was pretty good with the previous UI set-up (last UI post here). It looked good, worked out pretty well for me and all. Although I had managed to make that bottom bar panal as small as possible yet still useable enough for me to quick sight things I normally click outside of rotation, I still had the feeling that I didn't have quite enough open viewing area along the bottom. Here again, personal taste. Along with the thoughts that most groups Aygaren might possibly tank for could possibly end up in that area slightly hidden from my view. All things considered, the basic line-up of tank>melee>dps>healer, I had a little fear that one or some might end up LoS poor. I know. I'm being nit-picky. But the concern for me is real so the possibility of a side based UI went into motion.

So, most everything got moved off to the right side. My unit frame, casting bar/info, focus and target of focus frames got moved down some more. Omen became a bit smaller, but is easily sizeable during play as needed. And, there is plenty of open viewing area around these bottom elements now.

I like it. Initial field tests out in the open world of questing are showing good promise. Dungeon tests are yet to come. What do you think of it? Have you used something simular before? Any suggestions/thoughts are welcome.


  1. That layout looks nice allowing you to see more real estate, and it almost makes me want to try out one just to get stuff over to the left side since I'm left handed and that's where I look.

    I know nothing about UIs though. I use practically no addons. I never used a dps meter cause I figured I'd find out I wasn't doing good dps by being kicked, lol. I have always used Omen though as I didn't want to be rude and pull aggro.

    Looking forward to hearing how the dungeon tests go!

  2. Hey Ancient!

    Recount hides when in combat,besides, it's mostly for my personal use to gauge my rotations with.

    The add-ons I use are fairly basic ones, nothing too fancy. I prefer to keep the count low as well.

    Hopefully, I'll be starting some dungeons by next Wednesday.