Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Peek At My UI

I don't do a whole lot of UI or addon posts around here, you may have noticed.  It isn't that I'm against addons or anything, I'm just pretty vanilla.  I find an addon I like and then I stick with it for a long time.  I'm not constantly looking for the latest and greatest as long as the old works.  Thus, I'm probably not very qualified to tell you what is best when it comes to a Warlock UI.

I can, however, tell you what works for me.  I got a comment the other day asking about an element of my UI, so I thought I'd do a proper post on the subject.  I pilfered one of my screenies from the other day and went around numbering the visible addons.  I know a lot of folks have well over 100 addons.  I'm somewhere below 50 and above 25.  Like I said, pretty vanilla.  I also don't like to do a whole lot of set up.  I'm a set it and forget it type of guy.

With that stuff in mind, here's a little peek of what I'm doing as far as a UI.  Look for the yellow numbers...

  1. X-perl - My unit frames addon.  It's been around so you've probably heard about it.  I pretty much use it out of the box.  I think the only set up things I've done is to move around things like the raid boxes, pet frames, etc, which is simple drag and drop.
  2. Necrosis LdC - A great warlock addon.  I mostly use it for easy spell access.  I love the wheel.  I turn off the messages, but basically use this one as-is as well.  I've also turned of the DoT timer function because I use the big icon that come with X-perl.
  3. Dominos - An action bar addon.  Again, minimal on the setup.  Basically I've just dragged, dropped, and resized things to suit my fancy.  I macro most of my used spells and don't do a whole lot of clicking.
  4. SexyMap -  Basically a circular map on a square screen bothered me.  This addon fixes that "feature".  Also, it lets the little minimap buttons hide themselves unless you mouse over them.  Kind of nice.
  5. ForteXorcist - A nice little addon that has a ton of features.  I basically turned everything off except for the DoT timer and the SS/Summoning lists.  The DoT timer is my backup to X-perl since sometimes X-perl likes to freak out and not display all my debuffs.  Also, ForteX shows self-buffs, so it is easy to see how long I have left on things like my Life Tap Glyph buff or a trinket.  The two lists to left of the minimap are just generically helpful, especially when I was raid leading.  The summon list lets you know who might need a summon (based on proximity) and the "SS" list shows a lot of major cooldowns in it.  It's great for spreading out the Soulstones of multiple 'locks.
  6. Fubar is across the top. It is a basic addon that allows you to get some plugins up there.  Conversely, you could get a small bar mirrored on the bottom too, but I turned that off.
  7. There are two little plugins on the left side up there: GuildFu and ChannelWatchFu.  These simply display the people on in my guild and in any custom channels I've joined.  You can configure ChannelWatch to display only certain channels if you'd rather not have them all too.  It's pretty simple.
  8. There are three plugins in the middle: OutfitterFu, DurabilityFu, and MoneyFu.  Yes, I still use Outfitter as a relic from the time when it wasn't built in-game.  I mean I have all my outfits set up there already, why change?  DurabilityFu auto-repairs my stuff when I click on an appropriate vendor.  MoneyFu shows me some basic info about my spending, like whether I'm in the black or red today.
  9. LocationFu - Because sometimes it's nice to know where you are.  Also, the little bar beneath is part of Dominos.  I have it slightly invisible because it's just my crafting stuff.
  10. There is no ten, but I wanted to point out that my chat box is just the default UI.  I've split it in two and put the chatter on the left side with information on the right.   The "info" box shows crap I'm not too concerned about and is transparent.  A transparent chat box bugged me because it was hard to read, so I made it darker.  All this can be done through the settings if you right click on the chat box tabs.  Simple stuff.
 There are also several key things I wanted to mention here that are unseen.
  • Omen - The ubiquitous threat addon.  Great for it's flashing warning of when I'm about to be squished.  A must have for raiding.
  • Deadly Boss Mods - Also a must have.  I'm generally the one who has everything set to announce as well.  That's a hold over from my raid leading days.  Only works if I have assist though.  I've mucked around with it to turn off certain things that annoyed our group.  Like if we said not to worry about a certain mechanic, then I've tried to turn off the announcement.  It has check boxes for that purpose that are pretty self-explanatory, though sometimes hard to decipher (i.e. "Shiny Disco Ball" isn't one of the options for Kinetic whateverthefuck... you have to know the real name).
  • Addon Control Panel - It allows you to checkbox on and off addons and then use a /refreshUI to enable/disable them.  Totally useful for troubleshooting after a patch.
  • Questhelper - I still have it.  I toggle it with ACP whenever I get lost.  That doesn't happen much any more so I could probably do without.  
  • Recount - So I can epeen.
  • Auctioneer - This is another one I could toggle if I were experiencing latency issues (on my end) since this is a resource hog.  I generally leave it running though.  I don't scan the AH very much any more, but the interface is nice.
  • Pawn - My loot ranking addon.  I define my scales based on the weights given in the Elitist Jerks Simulation numbers.  Sometimes I'll use Nibuca's numbers too.  Other times I'll just make up my own.  It basically formulates gear choices based on your weights, allowing me to easily compare if something is "better" than something else.  Like any calculator though, garbage in = garbage out.
That's it.  Pretty simple.  A lot of these may have other dependencies (like Ace or whatever) and I use Curse to manage them.  I don't have a lot, but I think I make them all work pretty efficiently and don't spend a lot of time tweaking.  It's really nice to be one of the first ones ready to go on patch days because my reliance on addons is pretty minimal.  You can get as complicated as you want, however, as I'm aware there are a lot of really good addons that I don't use.  I like to think that you could just give me a DoT timer and my number keys and I'd be able to play effectively.  That may not be the actual case, but I suppose that's my "minimalist" aim.  My biggest reason for getting rid of the default UI?  It took up too much of the screen.


  1. Mine's similar, with some substitutions:

    Skada replaces Recount and Omen for me (better memory handling, better config, and more features, like a "Fails" module).
    I use FX identically, but damn I wish we could filter the other classes - in a fight, I would love to see soulstones and b-rezzes only.
    Quartz for Drain Soul ticks, GCD and cast bars - I prefer to use Quartz over unit frame cast bars for alts with interrupt abilities, and now that it shows drain ticks, it's just made of win.
    SexyCooldowns for dot and CD timing. I have 3 bars for Demo, one is dots, one is Decimation and Molten Core, and the third is longer cooldowns (Metamorphosis, Soulshatter, Teleport etc.)
    Bartender, not Dominos, just because I tried it first, way back when.
    Pitbull, not XPerl - I used to use XPerl, but prefer Pitbull.
    BigWigs, not DBM. I switched when AVR had a dependency on BW, and never went back (mostly because of indolence). I hear good things about Deus Vox, too.
    Auctionator, not Auctioneer (again, way better memory handling, seems to break shit less).
    LDB (with Fortress for display) instead of Fubar, since I write a couple of mods, and LDB's design is better, IMO.
    I threw Necrosis out a while back, doesn't do anything I need any more. Is it even being maintained? Also, warlock emotes are second only to pet hunter emotes in being tacky, tedious, and exiled to RP servers, IMO.

    Pretty much everywhere, I replace the irritating shiny bar textures with the Minimalist skin. That chrome tube style gets up my nose.

    Perhaps surprisingly, none of my rotation spells is visible in the UI, ever. They're all in macros and bound to buttons on my mouse. That plus a few hours in front of a target dummy make it automatic to cast the right spell without looking. I keep certain binds consistent, too: 6 is always soul shatter, because it comes at a break in my keyboard, and is easy to find without looking, and without error.

    I started on a big old UI analysis on With Great Suffering, then changed my UI when I switched spec and haven't started up again. Doh.

  2. Guess I need to check out this ForteX. I am still running dot-timers, which works, but the SS and summoning tools sound cool!

  3. The SS timer is useful on fights with a sacrifice gimmick - like, we sacrifice the fourth tank in Heroic Putricide in Phase 2 to make handling the Unbound Plague and all that other shit a little easier.

  4. Yeah, most of my addons are old. There are ones that are "new" that I need to check out. Like Quartz. Really I've never had a need until I needed to have something that tracks my DS ticks, but that's obviously a big part of our rotation now. Still, I've generally just watched the numbers on the screen, but an addon would be helpful. It's definitely one I need to try out.