UI Redux

Untitled from Fake Name on Vimeo.

I don’t think I have ever looked at my UI and said, ‘Ok, now it’s done.’  Since the last time I made a UI post, I have made some changes.  The moat visible change was floating combat text.  For the longest time I used Blizzard’s floating combat text to keep track of incoming and outgoing damage and heals.  And it does a reasonable job for most classes and when I play my shadow priest, I still use it, but for a tank that is using every single GCD to do something and is getting spammed with heals and is taking damage all the time, it could get really really cluttered.  I tried to use SCT but the initial configuration wasn’t what I wanted and after messing with it for quite a while, I still hadn’t gotten it right.  After that I tried a mod called Parrot.  Right out of the box Parrot was almost perfect and with minimal messing around, I got it to show everything just how I wanted.  The big changes I made away from the initial setup were adjusting the scrolling speed so that it cleared off my screen quickly and I turned off all of the healing.  Making incoming and outgoing damage scroll quickly meant that it wasn’t cluttering up my screen at all but it was still easily discernable if I wanted to keep an eye on something.  The other change I made was to have any resists or immunities register the same way that crits do.  So when a tclap gets resisted, the “Resist” message pops up bigger than the normal scrolling text and it ‘sticks’ on the screen for a moment to make sure I don’t miss it.  It makes keeping debuffs on a mob a lot easier for me.   

I also use a mod called ClassTimer to keep track of the duration on things like tclap, sunder and demo shout.  The window for that is right next to the scrolling combat text so it is very easy to keep track of whether a debuff lands or not because it will either have the duration refreshed in the ClassTimer window or it will so “Resist” in big letters right next to that window.  ClassTimer also keeps track of self buffs in a window I put a little more out of the way.  Since the shouts have a much longer duration than my debuffs I don’t feel like I need that info to be as front and center. 

For things like the shouts I could just look at my buff bar, but in the middle of the fight when I have hots and temporary buffs coming and going constantly, it can take some time to find my shout and check the time on it which is why I like to be able to keep track of it separately from all my other buffs.   

Right at my feet I have an action bar that contains the most immediate cooldowns – revenge, shield block, shield slam, bloodrage and taunt.  Down towards the bottom of my screen I have another bar with other cooldowns that I want to keep track of but which aren’t as crucial as those 5.  Right below the action bar on top I have another bar for trinkets and consumables so I can keep track of their availability.   

Below those 2 bars is my swing timer and GCD spark, courtesy of a mod called Quartz.  I really like having those two things because they allow me to be a lot more deliberate in my button mashing.  Knowing when the GCD is going to turn over allows me to push my devastate button only once and at the right time instead of spamming it constantly.  The swing timer does the same thing for my heroic strikes.   

Directly beneath is my target of target frame.  If I want to check my HP/Rage I rarely look at my character frame on top, I almost always get that info from the target of target frame.   

Below the target of target frame is Omen but since the video is from AV, Omen doesn’t show up.  There is a setting somewhere that lets you make the new Omen look like the old Omen which in my opinion is more aesthetically pleasing and I only have it showing 4 bars because as a tank, I don’t need to know where every person in the raid is on threat, I only need to know if someone is getting close to me.  That means that my Omen window is pretty small.   

Underneath Omen is another action bar with longer/less important cooldowns on it.  I also have an action bar for switching weapons and my ‘shoot bow/shoot gun/throw’ macro tucked down there.   

To the right of that cluster is my raid frame – Grid.  Grid can do an awful lot of stuff and is really nice for healing classes but I have it running in a pretty minimal mode.  Each player in the raid has their own square with their name on it and which are colored by class.  As their health goes down the box with their name on it gets smaller.  If there is a red square in the upper left hand corner, that means they are being targeted by a mob – or in the case of AV, an enemy player – which helps me to catch who is pulling aggro.  I also have a blue square show up in the bottom left corner if someone is below 30% mana so I can watch to see if the healers are running low on mana.   

To the right of Grid is my minimap which I have moved and made square with a mod called SimpleMiniMap.  You can see some add-on buttons attached to the minimap and I can move them anywhere on the screen I want with an addon called DetachedMiniButtons.   

One of the buttons there is for an addon called GrimReaper.  It used to be a part of the X-Perl package but now it is standalone and it is really quite nice.  It basically records a combat log for everyone in the raid.  It isn’t always perfectly accurate but it is usually pretty close.  Its great for finding out why people died because you can look through their combat log and see what hit them at what time, what heals they received, what buffs or debuffs they had, etc.   

Above my minimap is my tooltip window for which I use an addon called TinyTips.  TinyTips, like Grid, can do a whole bunch of interesting things but I really just use it to move the position of the tooltips because they would otherwise show up on top of my minimap.   

Above that are my Deadly Boss Mods timers.  They are obviously pretty important for raiding.  Some people like BigWigs instead of DBM, I think it’s a toss up though and just happen to use DBM because that is what my first raiding guild used.   

Above that is my buff window and above that is my debuff window except that I don’t have any debuffs in the video so you are just going to have to trust me that it is there.  I use
Buffalo to work with my buffs.  There is a new and improved version called Buffalo2 but I tried it and couldn’t figure it out within 3 minutes so I said ‘screw it; I’m going to use the old one which is already set up just how I want it’.  I use TrinityBars for my action bars instead of TrinityBars2 for the exact same reason.   

In the top right corner I have my MT windows for which I have a mod called MainAssist.  My guild doesn’t normally have MT windows but I personally can’t raid without them so I found a mod that would let me set up my own windows.  To the left of the MT windows is where the enemy cast bar shows up.  There are a lot of spells that need to be interrupted or reflected or stance danced, etc. and I have found that it makes life a lot easier to have a super huge impossible to miss enemy cast bar.   

On the bottom left are my two chat windows.  The one on top has the tank channel and any whispers I get and any other custom channels I join and the window below has guild chat, raid chat and general chat.  I use Prat to handle my chat windows and like Grid, it can do an awful lot of stuff but I use it to just make the windows a little cleaner. 

The unit frames are done by a mod called Pitbull.  My favorite part about Pitbull is that it has a healing monitor.  In the video there is only one druid healing me and he is only using hots so you can’t see it in action.  The way it works is that it takes not of anyone in the raid casting a heal on anyone else and based on the rank of the heal it will estimate how much health it will restore and tacks that onto my health bar as a green bar.  Basically, it lets me know how much healing to expect.  So if I dip low all of a sudden I can check my health bar and if there is a lot of green then I know I have a bunch of heals that will land in the very near future and I don’t have to worry.  If I dip and I don’t see green, then I know I have to pop a cooldown.  If I am not tanking currently tanking something then I can keep an eye on the current tank’s HP and incoming heals through the target of target frame and Intervene if the tank dips. 

I think that covers just about everything going on in my UI.  Let me know if I missed anything or if anyone has questions.  


  1. tankette says:

    That is a lot to digest. I’m only using Omen, DBM and Annoying Buff Reminder for UI mods. I haven’t had the patience to experiment with anything else. Which one should I start with?

  2. Your video is marked protected/private, so we can’t see it. :-(

  3. Rochelle says:

    oops, my first time doing anything with Vimeo. I think I fixed it.

  4. voraxkronox says:

    Ok, i like you Ui, (missing some action bars for my taste with other skills, but it is good, what i cant figure out is…how did you get that huge enemy casting bar up there!? was it pitbull?(i could not figure out how to do it with pitbull on a separated bar from the unit frame…).
    Plz answer a fellow tank that has missed some interrupts.

  5. Rochelle says:

    I use Quartz for the enemy cast bar. In the settings you can alter the size and location to make it super huge and right in the center of your screen.