The Need of Addons (User Interface Part 2).

To pick up where I left off yesterday- there’s a debate that has been buzzing around the WoW blog-o-sphere for some time now.  Whether or not it’s essential to raid, or even to play, with addons tacked on to your UI.  Brigwyn, of the Hunting Lodge, thinks that it would be better if we all played the game ‘as it was intended’, whereas many other bloggers and WoW players feel that it was intended to be played with addons, since Blizzard allowed them.

So where do I stand?  I love addons, and I’ll always use them.  But that doesn’t mean have to.  Some mods like  Deadly Boss Mods, make things considerably easier in dungeons and raids, and if you don’t like the default UI, addons could be a good option for you.  But I don’t think anyone should be pressured into using addons because it will “make them better players”.  That’s a load of crap.  Being a better players will make you a better players, addons have nothing to do with it.

Sure, there are classes out there that benifit from a custom UI.  Feral druids being a great example.  It’s tough to raid with the default UI when you have so much to keep an eye on.  Does that mean it’s impossible?  Of course not.  People can raid with default UIs and still do more damage then raiders who pimp their UI to the max.  It’s a game of skill, not of robots telling you what to do.

But, on the same hand, if you like addons, why not use them?  I play with them, and I think I’d go a  little bit crazy without it.  More than a little, in fact.  But, addons are tools.  Never consider them something more than that.  They might help your game, and they might not.  But the thing that’s going to make the biggest difference- is you.

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Published in: on March 28, 2010 at 1:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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A Look at User Interface.

A custom UI from Flairn's past.

I  love User Interface addons  (or UI mods, for short).  I always have, and from the very begining, tweaking my interface to suit my needs has been a fun part of WoW for me.  Above, you can see the interface I used to run with.  This is a shot from my very first raid (I ran Naxx 10 once, and Naxx 25 once with my guild- the extent of our PvE, a few months ago in the fall).

You can see my UI which looks nothing like the default one.  I was actually a big fan of this UI, largely because I made it my self- it’s 100% original (I didn’t write the addons, mind you, but the design was mine).  That UI is the product of a couple weeks work, tweaking this, adding that.  It was a lot of fun to play on.  Of course patch 3.3 dropped while I was away from WoW, and on my return they were all outdated, and I had to reset my UI.  I haven’t had it in me to re-do the old one, for several reasons.

First, the UI was very clunky.  It didn’t fill my whole screen, but the lower half was dominated by it.  Also, it wasn’t tailored to my spec at all.  The HUD (heads up display, the bars in the middle) was perhaps the only thing that really pertained to feral dps (which I knew nothing about, at the time).  Also, it lagged me out a lot.   I run WoW on a laptop (which isn’t the best  idea, I know) with a built-in chip set for graphics.  I just couldn’t handle big 25 man raids, with spells flying everywhere, and a gigantic number of addons running in the background.

So, I’ve tried to make my current UI as light as possible.  I’m using the default frames, just moved with Move Anything, and I’m running a few feral addons:  Feral By Night (which isn’t working for me, oddly, I’m still tinkering), Bad Kitty, and Grid for my raid frames.  It makes WoW a lot smoother and less laggy.

Now, if you understand what I’m talking about, good.  If not, don’t worry.  I haven’t forgotten the ponit of this blog.  I want to teach you the basics.  Now, I don’t have the time here to explain everything about User Interfaces here.  But No Stock UI is a great ressource.  I love it, and for all your addon needs, hit it up.  I’ve been meaning to do a guest author bit about addons 101 for Matticus down there (*ahem* three months overdue *coughs* still working on it *sneeze*).  But, for UI in a nut shell- here it is.

The default blizzard UI, (that is the way the screen looks when you play with no addons) is not the limit of the appearance of WoW to you, the player.  You can customize it with addons called… addons.  They do everything you can possibly imagine, from changing the font of your chatbox, to moving player and target frames, to creating frames  that weren’t even there originally.  You can check gearscores, track cooldowns, and assign keybindings with the greatest of ease (sometimes- other times it’s a royal pain).  If you’re interested, go to wow.curse.com and donwload addons.  There are other sites (WoWInterface, being another excellent one), but you can get pretty much anything you need from curse, in my experience.

Now, like I said, I don’t have time to explain everything UI here, but check  out the official blizzard forum dedicated to the topic, or just hang around sites like No  Stock  UI.  The real purpose of this post is to adress a growing topic in the WoW community, whether or not you NEED addons to play WoW.  Now, this post has gone too long as is, so I’ll cut it here, and finish up with a part two (sometime, probably later tonight).  For the time being, enjoy shifting through my rambling, and happy UI-ing!

Published in: on March 28, 2010 at 12:03 am  Leave a Comment  
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