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Patch 4.3: New UI improvements

Patch 4.3 is bringing with it some quality-of-life user interface changes as well as new features such as a completely revamped reforging interface and a bag search feature. In addition, targets on the minimap will now denote their relative height, either above or below you, now that we live in a world with three dimensions where flight is possible. This is excellent news.

As Blizzard continues to upgrade and tweak the default user interface, new features are added that have their genesis in addons, quality-of-life improvements that players have requested, or just upgrades to existing tech. Hit the jump for a list of new improvements and updates coming to the WoW default user interface.



Bag search

Players have had bag search for a long time already via popular bag and inventory addons such as ArkInventory, AdiBags, and Combuctor that already allow players to search through their bank and belongings. With patch 4.3, Blizzard has adapted this feature into everyone's user interface with a small search box at the top of the main backpack. As you begin to type in the search box, items matching the full or partial description will be highlighted, while items excluded from the search will dim out.

New reforging interface

Let's face it: Dropdown boxes are awful. The reforging user interface has gotten a significant makeover, eschewing the dropdown menus that required extra clicks to view information in favor of a selection menu that looks and feels cleaner and more streamlined. Fewer clicks are good clicks, am I right?

Guard directions

When asking a city guard for directions to one of the new features available in patch 4.3, players will be happy to know that the newest stuff now has a "New" tag and appears at the top of the list. You'll be able to quickly find the reforger, transmogrifier, and void storage, even though they are all now in the same building.

Minimap elevation/altitude

One of the problems with a two-dimensional minimap in a three-dimensional world is that it's hard to gauge elevation or altitude based on a fixed point on a map. Vashj'ir, the underwater starting zone in Cataclysm, is a particularly unique offender, where the entire zone had targets that could be above or below you.

With patch 4.3, a new indicator will appear when you hover over your target's icon on the minimap. A small arrow pointing up or down will indicate if your target is above or below you in elevation. If there is no arrow, it means you are on or near the level plane with your target. I love this addition, and it will hopefully make zones like Vashj'ir and Stormpeaks a bit easier to navigate.

Tracking update

The tracking selection menu on the minimap now has a separate area for townspeople such as repair vendors, reagents, class and profession trainers, and more. By adding a new sub-menu to the tracking menu, Blizzard clears some of the clutter from an increasingly large list of stuff to track. Notice also that the minimap can now track and show archaeology dig sites right on the minimap now -- no more hitting M and then moving two feet forward.

Transmogrification

In case you are late to the transmog party and haven't yet seen the new interface, I tossed in a picture of transmogrification, just in case.

There are lots of new changes coming with patch 4.3, and I love the quality-of-life changes most of all. There is plenty to still overhaul on the default user interface, but I'm glad Blizzard works with their UI slowly as to not overburden the players with a whole host of new things that throw us off our game right when a patch hits.




Brace yourselves for what could be some of most exciting updates to the game recently with patch 4.3. Review the official patch notes, and then dig into what's ahead: new item storage options, cross-realm raiding, cosmetic armor skinning and your chance to battle the mighty Deathwing -- from astride his back!

Filed under: Add-Ons, Cataclysm

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