Windows on the World (Shared Topic)
My brain is completely frazzled and fried from work this week, so just to get the cells going again, I’m going to tackle this week’s shared topic from Blog Azeroth! For those unfamiliar, Blog Azeroth is a community for WoW (and occasionally other MMO) bloggers, and they publish weekly “post ideas” to kick start your blogging.
This week’s topic is all about UI’s.
Our UIs are the windows into Azeroth—so what kind of window are you looking through?
A cluttered one? I’m very much not a UI tweaker, but I’m usually a healer so I need to have a lot of information at my fingertips. There’s the usual boss mods “alerts” section, the 10 (or 25) health bars, the section where I have a spot for Death Note/Recount to keep track of what’s going on, but that’s about it.
I pretty much use the default UI. The only mods I have installed currently are Deadly Boss Mods, Recount, DeathNote, WeakAuras, and Clique (for bindings). I keep on meaning to reinstall my RP mods, but by the time I’m home and get the chance to play, I usually feel like I would rather login than download mods.
I have a bunch of toolbars (bottom and side) showing. I use raid frames for both party and raid, and have them sized so I can see everything I need to see. I once used alot of UI mods and while it definitely made my screen look alot neater, I was also prone to breaking things. Sticking to the default means that there’s alot less I can accidentally screw up.
I think the thing that strikes alot of people about my UI is not only how crowded it is and how unmodified it is, but also the fact that I don’t have any healing spells on my toolbars (other than Healing Rain, res, and Unleash Elements). I’ve bound everything to keys/mouse buttons, so I don’t actually put the spells on my toolbar. I think it cuts down on the clutter, but there’s definitely a learning curve to that, particularly when I’m switching between healers. I try to keep everything “roughly” the same (big heal on one combo, small heal on another, penance/circle of healing/holy shock/chain heal on the same key, for example), but I usually need to spend 30 seconds reviewing my bindings if I haven’t played a class recently.
It was actually really interesting going into the beta and not having my standard bindings available — and I couldn’t make macros either since the macro screen kept crashing me. So, I went back to ye olde standard with all my healing spells on the toolbar and clicking on the individual party members, then the spell. The funniest part of that was not that I wasn’t used to using that set-up (that’s how I roll in Rift, so I’m totally comfortable with it, even in a raiding environment), but that I didn’t KNOW any of my healing spell icons! I had to think “Okay, that’s healing wave’s icon…that’s chain heal…” and it easily took me the first 10 minutes of the dungeon to get used to seeing the icons.
My buttons are also really mixed up since I don’t really play off my toolbar much, so it’s like “storage” for all the random things I might need. I think my priest still has the Oculus mount command on her toolbar!
So, my UI is pretty much like everything else in my life — cluttered, mixed up, but I know where everything is!