I have a big fat UI update on the way.
I know it’s been a patch or three since I last posted an update to this, and for that I apologize. You have to understand, however, getting a UI compilation prepared and ready for download is serious business — something I seldom have the time for. There may be little quirks and things that I can live with, fix later, etc… but when I make the decision to actually post it online, s**t has to be near-perfect. Because I have to work for a living, I must make decisions on how to spend my ‘off-time’, resulting in things like UI updates getting placed on the back burner.
Having said that… those of you eager to try out my user interface will be pleased to know that I have spent the past two days hard at work, trying to iron out the final few kinks. This involved a full audit of my custom interface, i.e., reassessing all of the addons – making sure that all of them were current and still being developed – or finding better alternatives, as well as finishing up the little customization odds and ends that have been needed prior to this update.
And I mean it this time… I know I’d been promising a Patch 4.2+ update for the past several months and hadn’t delivered, but I will be uploading an updated version of the Gar UI by the end of this week, If not sooner. Of course, this is provided that Patch 4.3 doesn’t blow it all up.
I also plan to update all of my Hunter Power Auras this week. I’ll have those posted here on the site.
Patch 4.3 Gar UI Overview and reasons for my UI OCD
My UI customizations are mainly focused on PvP these days. I still do some PvE content now and again, which means it’s definitely still raid viable, it’s just ‘more geared’ towards PvP.
It’s also gone on to become more hunter-specific than before. I use it for various other classes and it works just fine, but it has added enhancements for hunters. Obviously, it’s got the added benefit of including all of my Power Auras and buff/debuff filters, which are specific to when I’m huntering.
It’s still a very minimalist interface when out of combat, yet it’s quite information-rich without being all chock-a-block while in combat. I find the layout and configuration quite pleasing and accommodating for my needs.
Although there are a few great UI suites out there that look intriguing, i.e., LUI, RealUI, etc… none of them do ‘exactly’ what I want them to, and in the manner that I like, which is why I continue to tinker with my UI rather than just go with an all-in-one solution. I also like being able to change various addons within my interface — integrating them how I want. The custom UI suites are great if you like how they work out-of-the-box, but if you’re at all interested in working with something custom…you should give my UI a try. There’s a good chance that you may want to alter a few things about it, but it will provide inspiration and a very good starting point for what it is you want to accomplish.
Why’s the Gar UI not on WoWInterface anymore..?!
A few days ago I discovered that WoWInterface removed my UI download from their site. Initially I thought that it was due to 7+ months without an update, but I quickly noticed other comps and suites that hadn’t been updated since ’09. I contacted WoWI and they were without an explanation, but they did indicate to me that they’d at least restore my download count which had been in the neighborhood of 9K downloads. It’s likely that I’ll take this opportunity to place the download into a more Hunter/DPS specific category, rather than the general ‘minimalist’ category. I’ll update the links here on the site once it’s back up.
So what’s changed in the UI..?
Not a lot. I’m still utilizing many of the same addons that have served me well over the past few years. I’ve removed a couple and added a few new ones, but it more or less feels very familiar.
The only notable behind-the-scenes change has been the switch from SatrinaBuffFrame to Raven, along with configuring Raven to handle the limited duties I’d placed upon NeedToKnow. SatrinaBuffFrame is dead, so I removed it altogether, but NeedToKnow I’m keeping around just because it’s so awesome. I don’t have a use for it just this second, but I may very well find a use for it again real soon.
The visual updates are minimal, but here are a few things I’ve changed over the past few months:
- All of the unit frames are slightly larger, especially the player and target frames. I really appreciate a minimalist interface, but I still want all of the information I need to be easy to see. Larger health and focus bars are more user-friendly for my 40 year old peepers.
- Tidy Plates / Threat Plates will be included. I am pretty smitten with this addon, so it will definitely be included in the new compilation.
- I’ve toned down my Power Auras usage a bit, however, the configs are still included – just set to inactive. Use them if you want, in other words. Also note that I’ve made them to live comfortably alongside the default in-game auras.
- I installed the Clean Icon pack to provide a consistent look across the various addons that show buff and spell icons (e.g., Raven, Power Auras, etc…).
- I ditched Apathy and went to Renaitre for my button skinning. I wanted a look that was more on par with the Clean Icon pack, plus the icons provide a slightly larger view of the spell and cooldown – again…easier on the eyeballs.
- I removed BigWigs. I haven’t raided in ages, so I ended up chucking my boss mod addon. It can be easily added for those of you that are interested in using this UI for raiding.
- I removed the AZCastBar BG timer addon. I liked having those timers, but that addon was terribly broken. I may have a look at Capping or something similar, but it’s doubtful I’ll have anything to fill this role for the update. If any of you know of a good BG timer mod, please let me know.
There are other various little tweaks, but nothing worth mentioning.
I’ll have updated screenshots and more info on the UI update once it gets posted this week.
Lastly, for those of you reading this who are maybe new to WoW and wondering what the hell I’m talking about with all of this custom UI business… I plan to have some ‘spotlight’ posts on the various addons I use, hoping to shed light on why I use them, how I’ve configured them and how they can improve your play. Maybe wait for those posts, then you can decide if you want to start messing with addons.