This week on Reader UI of the Week, I want to showcase a UI that does something that I, stylistically, don't enjoy, but done in such a manner that makes me change my tune. Daedhir's UI is a compact and neat interface that strives to make use of the game's user interface art in order to give the UI a little classic with the total revamp. Suffice to say, I like it. Let's take a look inside.
Daedhir's UI has actually been featured here before during the early days after the launch of Wrath of the Lich King as one of five user interfaces spotlighted for WoW.com readers. Daedhir was kind enough to send me a quick message telling us all about the new changes to his addon package in a 2.0 release:
Hi. An earlier version of my UI was featured back at launch of Wrath along with a few other reader UIs, and the exposure led to me putting my UI up for download. I've been providing it ever since.
I very recently put up a complete revamp of the UI. I've tried to make it fit in very well with the default Blizzard UI elements, using a lot of the original Blizzard UI artwork to make things look good. It's a pretty big departure from what most UI developers do these days -- most go for something very minimalistic. I've tried to make the major elements in my UI get out of the way as much as possible, while still providing tons of information and lots of room for action bar buttons. I also put into practice many of the accepted techniques for power users -- for instance, putting the unit frames below the player's character model, to minimize the distance that they player's eye has to travel on screen when fighting. But I really tried to make the aesthetic fit in well with Blizzard's overall look. I'm really happy with how it turned out.
You can find lots more info at http://daedhirui.blogspot.com and this page contains a link to where the UI is available on WoWinterface.
Thanks, and I hope you find my submission useful.
I very much like Daedhir's interface. The layout is confined mostly to the bottom portion of the screen, leaving a nice, big viewing area that the user interface itself does not interfere with. I am also a sucker for good UI art, and Daedhir's UI does not disappoint. While I don't think Daedhir's total UI package is for the beginner who wants a collection of some of the best addons out there, I do think it is a great starting point for those in the intermediate to high level of skill and finesse with the WoW user interface tools in order to form a great base of addons to begin with.
available at his website, but I did want to highlight a couple good inclusions. In particular, I like what he has done with the original art and borders in kgPanels as I said before. kgPanels is an addon that deserves a book written about it, so for brevity's sake I will tell you that kgPanels makes dynamic art panels with user specified borders and colors, segregating areas of the screen. Blizzard does good art, and Daedhir's use of the art coupled with awesome borders makes this UI slick.
In addition, his Grid placing is nice. Personally, on healer user interfaces I like having Grid front and center, and any other class UI Grid can be wherever it is out of the way. Daedhir's UI allows Grid to be moved in many places and still stay clean and clutter free, which is definitely a plus. In the five man instance shot above, Grid is in an awesome place, placed perfectly above the unit frames and sized correctly. Very solid.
The mod package comes with an installation text file that should be followed precisely. Surprisingly, this process has gotten a lot smoother over time, and Daedhir makes this process fairly easy. The only issue for some players might be the UI's focus on widescreen resolutions. If you do not have a widescreen monitor, you might have some tweaking ahead in the future.
Daedhirs UI is available at his website or [WoWInterface].
Everyone loves sending me email questions about addons! I have never had more email in my life. You guys are awesome, and I am extremely sorry if I haven't gotten to your questions yet. I will do my best to get to them all, but in the meantime, I wanted to use some space after the main gist of the article to answer some reader questions that might be popular on a larger scale and be able to help the community at large.
First up is an agitated moonkin!
I'm looking for a macro to cause my treants to spawn automatically
when I cast force of nature. I don't care if they lose dps running from me to the boss & I use my mouse for movement, so I'm rarely aware of where my pointer is. I dropped the talent from my spec, because it would cause me to go into a flurry of inactivity every time the cd was up.
Zuktaw (irritated treant-less Moonkin)
Thanks for the question, Zuktav. Sadly, the ability for macros to 'click' on the interface for you died in the salad days of Decursive. The only way to have the game click on a spot for you would be to use a program that goes against the terms of service and is illegal in WoW. These programs get around the game's source code in nefarious ways. You can make a simple macro like the one I have put below to have the treants attack your target after they are summoned, but you are still required to click on the area in which you want to summon your treants. And, please, do not go looking for a program that will click for you -- it can only end in tears. Probably yours.
Sample Treant Macro
#showtooltip Force of Nature
/cast [nopet] Force of Nature
/click [pet] PetActionButton8
/click [pet] PetActionButton1
Dear Addon Dood,
Hellos, my question is simple: Do addons in general affect the performance of my machine (specifically frame rates) and internet connection speed when I'm playing me some WoWcrack? My machine and internet aren't the "hottest" kids on the block and so I'm barely playing with 20fps at most. Curious to see if my frame rates would improve when removing all addons, I saw the results were barely noticeable. Whats your take? :)
Thanks again :P
Good question, Jacob. Addons mostly can affect CPU performance, and only if there is a lot of information being shuttled back and forth between the channels that addons use to communicate with the game and with each other. A lot of addons active at one time can hit CPUs with a bit of a performance problem. Usually, though, this isn't the case. Addons in general will probably not have the sweeping effect on your system that it seems is your bottleneck. Some addons working in concert may potentially have memory ramifications or weird crashes, but in general, turning off all addons will not give you a magic huge increase in system performance.
Thank you all for the questions! See you guys later in the week for AddOn Spotlight, and please keep mailing those questions in to firstname.lastname@example.org!
Interested in getting the most out of your user interface? Come back once a week for more examples of reader UIs. For more details on individual addons, check out Addon Spotlight, your source for everything addon-related.