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Cataclysm Beta: Updated user interface elements

Our friends at World of Raids are showing a preview of some slick changes coming to the user interface in Cataclysm. Some of the elements that have received an overhaul are:
  • character panel
  • leveling up
  • spells and professions book
  • trainers
  • quests
... and more!

Just be warned that there are going to be a few possible quest spoilers in here, so you may wish to skip over this if you want to remain unspoiled.

Your character

Check out the new character pane! All of your stats are now in a collapsible area and have been moved over to the right side.

When it comes to leveling, here is what it looks like whenever you gain a new level. It'll be big and bright. Not only that, it will also tell you what new abilities will be available to you. This will save you a few trips back to the class trainer. Personally, during some of the earlier levels, I like to learn new spells every second or third level. Anyway, not only will you learn when new abilities and talent points will be available to you, but if you're eligible for different battlegrounds, the dungeon finder, riding types or glyphs, it will alert you here and in your chat window.

And you can click the "You've Reached Level X" to see the entire list of what will be available to you.

Professions
Here you can see the addition of the new professions tab in the spellbook. Buttons to access the various recipe panels can also be found here. And yes, those same buttons can be used for hotkey purposes. Information about the two main professions will be at the top (like blacksmithing and mining in this example), and all secondary professions are listed below. If your character hasn't learned them yet, there will be a message telling you to go see a trainer. Otherwise, it displays the amount of points your character has along with access to the different recipes.

For recipes, the recipe list looks a little something like this. You'll notice it hasn't really changed a whole lot. The search box and filter gets a bit of a minor face lift. What really got changed is that white arrow with the "3" next to it for the Fire-Etched Dagger. Crafting professions like tailoring and blacksmithing can now give multiple skillups when you're creating certain items. The recipe panel now tells you how many skillups you can get if it exceeds one skillup point. In this case, creating the dagger here will provide three skillups.

Spellbook


Any abilities that your character can use or have not learned yet will also appear in the spellbook. In the spellbook below, you can see a new ability is ready to be trained, and the player is informed to go visit a trainer to gain access to it. Any lower-rank iterations of an ability have been removed. The spellbook only shows the maximum rank.
Trainer UI

Diggin' the new trainer UI? The left one is for your skills and the right one is for professions. The entire interface just looks cleaner over all. The visual icon, the name, level requirements and costs to learn are listed in an easily scannable format. Anything your character can't learn is greyed out.

Quest UI

Not quite sure who your targets are? If there's a specific, named NPC you need to go after and kill, you'll find that the quest UI has been updated to display a model of who you need to go find. In the shot above, I think it works the same way when you're looking for friendly NPCs.

Not only that, a new remote quest system is now in the game. In other words, you can receive and complete quests without having to hustle back to the quest giver. When you're ready to turn in a quest, you'll see an alert that notifies you of it.

Your minimap also provides an arrow directing you to the first quest in your quest tracker. Try to start with the quests that are closest to you, to make the process easier.
PvP

And lastly, you can see the new PvP panes. The left tab allows you to queue for standard battlegrounds. The conquest tab lets you try your hand at rated battlegrounds and arenas. The last tab enables you to create your own arena team without having to visit an arena master.
There are a few more UI elements that are new, but these are the big ones that caught my attention. If you want to see more, go ahead and check out Kody's excellent wrap up over at World of Raids. Stuff like the guild perks pane have not been implemented yet. Hopefully we'll see those sometime in the near future.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From goblins and worgens to mastery and guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

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