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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Pretty in pink

Reader UI of the Week
Tweedlebop probably won't be happy with the title of this piece, given that the UI's color probably isn't really pink, as such. But he sent in all these screenshots with the most adorable of race-class combinations, being, of course, a gnome death knight, with pink pigtails, and I had to do it. Apologies, Tweedlebop!

The other thing I could have called this column was something about Weak Auras. I've had a few UIs recently which have put this very powerful addon to great use, and, as we'll discuss, Tweedlebop's is no exception.

If you would like to send in your UI, I'd be very happy to receive it, pop an email over to olivia@wowinsider.com, and please include some screenshots, a list of the addons you're using to create the visible elements, and tell me what you're happy with and unhappy with in your UI.

Tweedlebop went a step further, and sent me a link to an online gallery showing off his UI! I will be pulling down some key images and linking back to them as they become relevant, but you can see that entire gallery here.

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Damage over time

Reader UI of the Week
I'm excited to be getting more standard UI challenge screenshots arriving in my inbox at the moment, but I still want more! Play without addons? Completely standard UI with no modifications whatsoever? No problem! Send it in! There's still customization available within the standard UI, without addons being used at all. And if you don't use the standard UI, have a go! Send it in, the only rule of the challenge is that you can't have any non-standard UI elements visible.

To send in your UI, drop an email to olivia@wowinsider.com, and include your addons, your likes and dislikes about your UI, and some screenshots! I can take video submissions, but they need to also come with screenshots -- not everyone can watch videos!

This week's UI submission comes from Tinala, of Moonrunner US-H. Tinala was extremely helpful in their submission, sending in not only one combat shot, but a second, solo one to go with it, as well as a "map" which shows which addon is which, an out of combat image, and a timeline showing UI evolution over the past 2 years. And many gold stars were issued to Tinala on that day!

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Slim here

Reader UI of the Week Slim
Slim here. I warned you I'd do it.
It's an ominous way to open a column, and an ominous way to start an email with a UI submission. Slim, a regular in the comments here on WoW Insider, did indeed warn me he'd send in his UI, and you should all do the same! We're not elitist here, nobody's going to be awful to you. As I said in my first column with my own UI, there's no right or wrong answer to UI customization, no such thing as the perfect UI, only your perfect UI. I would say, though, that if you're plagued with errors, that might warrant some changes.

If you want to submit your UI, do send me an email on olivia@wowinsider.com. Let me know what addons you're using, what you like, and what you don't like so much. I've had a few UIs for the challenge I set you all a couple of weeks back to create a UI using Blizzard standard elements, but I'd love a few more!

But on to Slim. A full-size screengrab of his UI can be found here.

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Blast from the past

Reader UI of the Week Blast from the past
That's not very "from the past", you say? That's a current tier raid, Feng the Accursed to be precise? Well, you'd be right. But, ladies and gentlemen, this is the UI of a chap called Justo. Justo emailed me his UI, and let me know that he'd had a UI featured once before back in 2007, five years ago! In that original article, Justo referred to his UI as "controlled clutter" presenting this out of combat image, and this in combat one. I have to say, he was right about the clutter, and I'm impressed he was able to maintain control.

Skip forward over five years and here we are. Justo's back, and it's really interesting to see how his UI has evolved! I was inspired by Justo's email to look back through my screenshots and get an idea of the evolution of my UI, but alas up until fairly recently, that is to say the last couple of years, I didn't really think my UI was worthy of many screenshots. It seems I preferred to hide it and take pictures of the world instead! If you have pictures of your UI going through the years, do send them in, I'd love to see a UI evolution take place!

But anyway, here we are, 5 years after the original article. Justo's UI now looks more like this, when he's in combat, and this, when he's not in combat.

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Busy busy busy

Reader UI of the Week Busy busy busy!
This week I'm taking a different approach with the UI sent in to me by Vanard, you can see it in the header image if you squint really hard, but for those of us with normal vision, here's a link to the full size image.

Vanard sent me his UI with a detailed email telling me exactly what he's using, and you should do the same! We're getting a lot of healer UIs, we had Synchrony's priest UI last week, and my own UI the week before. We need some tank and DPS UIs! If you do email me on olivia@wowinsider.com, tell me what addons you're using, why you're using them, what you like and what you'd change. And don't think you have to use a ton of addons, I'd love to feature a customized version of the standard UI.

I challenge you!

Actually, let's call that a challenge! Send me your best UI customization that only uses standard Blizzard UI elements. You can use addons to move them around, reposition, re-size, but it has to be exclusively Blizzard frames visible. Points awarded for using fewer addons, and for innovation, or doing things that most of us don't realize the Blizzard UI can do! Do still send me your normal UIs, as well.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Dark and handsome

Reader UI of the Week Dark and Handsome
Welcome back to the second instalment of the new version of Reader UI of the week! Thanks so much for all your comments on last week's column, I'm doing my best to take them on board, but if there are things I'm failing at, do make suggestions! Feedback is always welcome.

This week, we're going to take a look at Synchrony's UI, which he sent in via email. If you want to do the same, please do, drop me a line by clicking the link, or send an email to olivia@wowinsider.com with some high quality screenshots of your UI, and let me know what addons you're using, why you've gone for the layout and look that you've chosen, what you like about it, and what you are still working on. UIs are always a work in progress!

Anyhow, let's get down to business.

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: In the Interest of Honesty

Reader UI of the Week In the Interest of Honesty
Welcome to the latest iteration of Reader UI of the Week. I'm your new host, and we're back thanks to popular demand. Well, frankly, the popular demand was for Mat McCurley's column. I've taken the reins and am hoping to at least hold a candle to Mat's work.

I've been reading back over the past years' Reader UI of the Week columns, and trying to work out what it was that people enjoyed. It's a little bit of judgement, a chunk of advice, a little bit of looking at the good and bad sides of UIs and a big bit of discussion. It seems obvious to me that UIs are intensely personal. There's no right or wrong answer to the question "What's a perfect UI?" The question, in my opinion, should be rephrased to "What's your perfect UI?"

Nonetheless, we all like to judge. It's rather like the WoW equivalent of a home improvement show, this column. And on those shows, I always want to see the presenter's house. So that's what we're doing today. The above image is my own UI. This column has been a great motivator to fix up some of the UI elements on my own screen that have been bothering me since the start of Mists, but that I've been too lazy to repair!

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: 3D spell effects eye candy

Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

Now this is awesome and share-worthy to the extreme: a UI built around incorporating 3D spell effects from WoW into the UI elements that support them. Using a combination of WeakAuras, ingenuity, and lots of beer, Kait:Auras was born. Is it impractical? Yes. Is it awesome? Double yes. If you're going for eye candy, pack it with sugar and calories.

Just when you think you've seen the last out of the World of Warcraft UI, someone comes along and breaks the game with a poison swapper or allows you to draw a phallus army all over Dalaran. That sense of adventure, that the whole game could come crashing down at any point because of some enterprising young upstart, was what fueled the fun of the addon community and development -- the off-chance that your addon, in the grand history of addons, would change the world. Making the game better was one thing, but the unintended and often hilarious consequences of giving Blizzard such a (relatively weak) headache is kind of fun.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Seeing Cassilan's screen

Reader UI of the Week Seeing Cassilan's screen TUES
Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

Welcome to another exciting edition of Reader UI of the Week. Today's subject is going to divide readers into two camps -- people who can tolerate clutter and people who cannot. Over the years, I've come to gain a tolerance and understanding of clutter because, frankly, I understand the laziness inherent in all of us. There is always a moment just after you reach for the mouse, begin to scroll, and suddenly weigh the time it would take to complete this task against taking another excellent bite of your Little Bacon Burger from Five Guys. I'll tell you right now, I just took a delicious bite of burger.

I do a disservice to people when I attribute clutter to laziness. That's not the case at all. In fact, I find that I work a little better in an environment where I have to actively find something amongst other things. There's a type of juxtaposition or patterning that presents itself; I know where Shockwave is because it's next to the icon for Revenge on my bar, etc. So what does this all have to do with clutter, UIs, and functionality? Enough, I'd say.

Cassilan's UI has a direct and stated purpose -- see the game's screen. See the action, see the adventure, and see the character in full glory. At the same time, a suite of addons is activated to add necessary customization and features not present at default. We can discuss the minimap, which is admittedly a little rough around the edges, but every bump can be smoothed out.

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Filed under: Reader UI of the Week

My Mists of Pandaria beta UI is almost perfect

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

This is exciting. The very first Reader UI of the Week from the Mists of Pandaria beta, and it gets to be my own. In fact, the UI that I've created in the beta is a bit of a dream team, fantasy UI that has been bouncing around in my head ever since World of Warcraft went live on the first day. You see, it's taken more than seven years for this feature to be developed and implemented in the game, and things will never be the same once the newest expansion launches.

I've been waiting for the ability to move my player and unit frames for a long, long time. The upper-left location of the screen was never my favorite area to slap a health and mana bar. I've put up with it over the years and have changed the feature wherever and whenever possible, but betas are not usually addon-enabled until the later days. Until then, I must make do.

These days, however, Mists of Pandaria looks to bring us some beautiful new changes to the user interface and my own sanity, giving me the ability to change some of the fundamental aspects of the player and target frames. With just two small movements and two quick options, the World of Warcraft default user interface moved leaps and bounds forward in the race to compete with my custom setup. And this fact makes me wonder if the UI will one day be seen as analogous to transmogrification, where Blizzard thinks that people can't handle one thing but actually crave the other.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Enter the box with Oakdusa's raiding UI

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

Functional isn't always beautiful. All of you should go out to your vehicles in your driveways or parking structures and look at the floor mats. I guarantee that your car is a wreck. If you've got kids, don't even get up from the seat; we've all been in your car. Functional, but not going to win any beauty contests.
I'm featuring Oakdusa's UI because it made me incredibly nostalgic for the days of the original World of Warcraft and its eternal predecessor, EverQuest. The EQ user interface was this odd creation, living in the realm of "this sounds like a great idea on paper because people enjoy the comforts of realism in a fantasy world." What an MMO's UI fundamentally had to have was not defined yet, not in the modern setting, until World of Warcraft came along.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Bryce and Elv's UI stand against any foe

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

As many of you already know, my go-to recommendation for pre-fab compilation user interfaces is ElvUI. I love this addon pack because the skinning of the interface keeps the game uniform with easy-to-read fonts and lots of information for both the novice and expert, and it's updated enough that, for my purposes, I've never really worried.

Bryce's user interface starts with an ElvUI foundation and moves toward full-featured completion with a bevy of new addons not included in the pack. Filling out the areas that ElvUI doesn't necessarily cover, Bryce has complemented the addon pack with addons necessary to raid and function, as opposed to addons that skin or change the aesthetics of the user interface.

Here's the part that interested me about the aesthetics issue: None of the addons that Bryce added to his setup changed the way ElvUI actually looks. Sometimes you get to talk about behind-the-scenes addons. Let's have fun with it.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Neutral elements and goldfish

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

What do you get when you cross readers with UIs? Reader UI of the Week, of course. Want to show off your own interface creations? Send an email, screenshots, and anything else you'd like to readerui@wowinsider.com, and you might see your submission right here. That's totally awesome.

This week's discussion is all about Alvala and a changing multi-spec setup that eventually had to accomodate the healer lifestyle. With a flair for keeping things neat and tidy, as well as introducing neutral elements that span each class, spec, and role for every character, Alvala has created a UI that works for pretty much anything she can think of with room to grow.

I don't want to spoil the surprise, but at the end of the article today, I talk about how much I like the little WeakAuras goldfish that Alvala has on her UI. It's pretty much one of my favorite things. Must have caught me at a good time, little goldfish.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Vhei's Cataclysm 2.0 UI packed up for you

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

When a beautiful user interface hits the site and people ask where to get it, I have the sad news that not everyone makes their user interfaces available online. The process done correctly, mind you, is a relatively complicated one -- there is a lot that goes into it, especially for a first-timer. So while it is not a requirement to make your user interface available when submitting to Reader UI of the Week, it's always a pleasure when one does come down the pike.

Vhei's user inteface creations have always been fun to showcase because of his talent and attention to detail. Lots of user interfaces out there do what his does, as do all of ours for the most part, but the construction of the whole is where I am always impressed with his creations. I've just gotten an email from Vhei letting me know that his last UI, the Cataclysm 2.0 UI, has been released as a package that you can download and try out. He's even got a video on YouTube explaining the process. Let's find out more, shall we?

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Vondak knows presentation is everything

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Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

Welcome back to Reader UI of the Week, WoW Insider's showcase of the community's user interfaces. I'm looking for Mists of Pandaria beta UIs. Enough people are in the beta now playing around with monks and their kit, so let's see what people are doing with monk abilities. Whatever it is, I want you to show it off. Let's get a jump on the expansion while we talk about real-world examples from people's beta screenshots.

That's not this week, however. A special treat is lined up for you today. Vondak, a survival hunter from the Nesingwary (US) realm, has decided to let his character speak for themselves about their user interface. In lieu of a reader email and submission this week, we have a reader gallery, as Vondak takes you through the intricate parts of the "high and tight" setup.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

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