Any hunters with questions they may have can drop me a line at:

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


If you’re lucky enough to be playing on a nice big wide monitor then screen real estate is not that big of a problem for you.  Smaller screens and especially laptops can become a cluttered mess really fast and really easily.  I experimented with several pre-made UI's such as Spartan and Nui, but none of them ever gave me "the whole package" when it came down to my personal wants and particular needs. Especially playing on a 15.4 screen on my MacBook Pro.  A decent viewing area and an unobtrusive  UI was paramount. So I wanted semi-minimalistic but visually nice too.  So I figured if you want one done right for you, ya gotta do it yourself.

I wanted to find just the right mix of aesthetics, functionality and organization.

I've gone as minimal as I can without sacrificing non essential key bound buttons like food and mounts that aren't super necessary to have as buttons but they cater nicely to everyday laziness.  The one thing that really helped to open up extra space was by placing recount on top of omen and then set recount to hide in combat and show out of combat. Then set omen for the opposite.  IMO if you know your class, rotation and spec well you don't need to be staring at recount in a raid, attention should be at the job at hand.
My action bar is easily seen to watch cooldownds, with all other bars below very visible and easy to figure out.  I’ve shrunk my pet bar just above the pet’s frame, most of his important abilities are macro’d anyway so it’s not like I need to be clicking on them.
I've kept my unit frames easy to see, and placed in the main middle frame.  Whereas my raid and party frames show in the upper left and take up very little space, after all I'm not a healer so I just need to really know who my tanks are and how they're doing. Chocolate bar is a great add on that is still supported and updated with a lot of great add ons to attatch to it such as switching specs with just a mouse click on the bar.
Sexymap stays stock with it's  plain square map tucked up there in the top right corner.
I went with xperl for the unit frames not only because of it's massive customization but the vanity part of me wanted something cool looking as well.  There is an option to have your character displayed as a small 3D image.  Again, nothing super practical but I'm going for a nice visual feel when I'm playing.
Now one of my favorite add ons is tidy plates.  Tidy plates is very configurable, from just having a simple cool looking frame to having it display debuffs.  As you can see on the right are my shot debuffs, serpent sting, concussive shot etc.  They are also displayed right above the target for easy checking to see when they drop without taking your eyes off the fight.
Now I understand that disabling the default UI and starting from scratch can be very intimidating but it’s actually made quite easy with kg panels and bartender 4.  KG panels is not a very user friendly add on to just load and play with however there are some great youtube tutorials here by cychow and redmist. :
Here is a combat sceen in action showing omen and the debuffs with tidy plates :

And here is an out of combat with recount showing :

Here are where the raid frames show, very unobtrusive and out of the way:

All in all I think I've accomplished making something that isn't only somewhat visually appealing but also has a logical layout to it that lends to helping gameplay not hindering it.

Addons used:
Bartender 4
Bison for buff bar
Button facade
MIK Scrolling Text
Chocolate bar (with adds)
Tidy Plates

No comments:

Post a Comment