Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things

Just after Cataclysm came out I decided it was time to take a break from WoW. I had been playing since Vanilla and was just downright bored. After nearly two years away from the game I found myself curious about the new expansion. Pandas!? I mean, there are so many possibilities for Blizzard to turn into content, but I didn’t think it would be the Pandaren. Alas, it was, and I was finding myself itching to know more. I finally relented and bought the expansion and fired up my WoW account once again.

Some things hadn’t changed, others were incredibly different. For people who are coming back to the game, here are some things I learned either by accident or with the help of some friends that you might want to learn about too.

  1. Core Abilities Tab – This tab tells you about your most important spells, and when you should use them. Having been away for a while I found this tab to be awesome at refreshing my memory at how to play the various classes. You can find this under your profession/spell book page.
  2. What’s Changed Tab – There’s a tab that explains what recent changes have been made to your class. I’m one of those people that usually reads the patch notes in depth, but if I wanna get lazy about it I’m glad that this tab is there.
  3. Dungeon Journal – It’s like Atlas Loot, but also explains boss abilities, and information about a dungeon in addition to listing the possible loot. Extra bonus, it has filters to narrow down not only your class, but your spec, too! You can view this by pressing Shift+J.
  4. Pet/Mount Journal – There was a tab for this before, but now it’s got it’s own journal. In addition to simply being a place to access all your collections, it’s also the interface for pet battling. You can access this by pressing Shift+P.
  5. AOE Looting – This is one of those things I had to figure out. I was killing groups of mobs, but could only loot one. Gone are the days of looting every body, now it’s just one and done!
  6. Pet Battles – It’s like Pokemon, but in WoW! Remember all those vanity pets you collected up over the years? Now you get to battle other pets! You can even capture new pets in the wild. It even has a host of achievements to go along with it all.
  7. Daily Quests – Ok, daily quests aren’t new. In fact, they aren’t generally a favorite either, but the cap is now gone… and I have one friend who called this the “Expansion of Dailies” and I’d have to agree.
  8. Scenarios – It’s like a mini dungeon, but only requires 3 people, has a really short queue, and rewards you with gold and Valor points. These are great options for people who want to do something outside of the usual dungeon crawl.
  9. All the Usual Changes – All those things you expect to see in a new expansion such as new dungeons, gear, abilities, locations, profession changes, et all. I would love to list them all here, but that is something I’d like to expand upon more in another post.

For all that has changed, the game is still the same at heart. It’s a place to be social, have fun, and explore the lore that is Warcraft. I’m glad to be back and if you’re thinking about coming back, don’t forget about those Scrolls of Resurrection, if you qualify, you can automatically have a toon leveled to 80 for you. I’ll see you out in the World.

The Smoke Has Cleared Crashed on me halfway through this post, you will have to search these addons yourself. Sorry.

And I can see a light, I think. Now that the servers are becoming stable, its time to think about where to go from here. I’ve begun working on some achievements (125 done so far!) and I’ve got a new UI. This time I am running Spartan UI with some extra stuff added on. Its a lot less resource heavy then my last UI, but required some .lua file editing to get everything in place. Hopefully though now that its all figured out I can share my mods with you.


Solo, with a target and WIM

Solo, with a target and WIM

SpartanUI – Gives me the pretty graphic at the bottom and the target and character frames. The buttons are modded with Bartender 4.


Auctioneer – Oh how I love thee. All updated and ready to go

Healbot – healing mod, that Im loving for my pally

Recount – Gotta see my standings

Omen3 – looks cool now, if you ask me

Rating Buster – Not sure if this is working with the new stats, but says its updated


Party setup

Party setup

Combustor – Bag Mod


Fubar – technically not updated, but not giving me any trouble.

Atlasloot – I like knowing

BigWigs – Boss mod

DBM – Also a boss mod. If one misses the other usually catches it

Combuctor – All in one bag

Decursive – Cause people dont like dying, apparently

ElkBuffBars – Fancy buff mod

Icehud – I have no idea why I like HuDs, it seems I dont even notice them most the time

MikScrollingCombatText – Big numbers are fun right?

Pallypower – I wouldn’t know how to buff without it

Prat 3.0 – Chat mod makes my life easier

QuestHelper – Updated and easy to use… but no waypoints until Cartographer is ready to go

WIM- Works like AIM, Get it?

Three Point Oh Has Landed

Its black tuesday, and a long one at that. While waiting for the servers come back up, I’ve been giving some thought to my toons. Pally right now is a Holy Paladin with decent healing gear and even better tanking gear. Poofnstab is a Sub Rogue spec’d into shadowstep which I really love. I believe for pally, Im going to leave her as holy, and I was going to use the second spec to store prot…. but while I am leveling I guess I will store ret. As for Poof, she’ll have Shadowstep stored, along with Combat spec for raids. I have not yet decided how the points will go. I guess I will play with it for a bit and post what I settle on when I am done.

As for my precious UI? Oh man was it involved, here let me show you what all I had running (this list does not include the Libs for the mods)

Full UI

Full UI

Auction, Mail, and Inventory: 

  • AckisRecipeList – When this mod is run with a tradeskill window open, it will list all of the recipes for that tradeskill you don’t have and how to get them. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • AHSearch – Allows for quick access to commonly looked up items, filtered into user-defined categories. 
  • Combuctor – All-in-one bag replacement for your bags and bank. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Postal – Allows for quick mailing of items to last recipient (alt-click item in inventory) and bulk open/mail. 
  • Examiner – Provides more information when you inspect someone (i.e. total armor, spell dmg, etc). UPDATED FOR 3.0 (TEST PHASE)
  • FastDisenchant – Auto-loots disenchant and prospecting windows. 
  • Fence – Adds some keyboard shortcuts to speed up auctioning. 
  • Outfitter – Allows you to configure and swap out predefined gear sets (i.e. tank, dps, resistance, etc) and will equip/unequip items on events (such as spirit gear during Evocate or Riding Crop when mounted). UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • PotentialProfit – Displays bid/buyout totals for your auctions in the auction window.
  • qAHImproved – Remembers the last price items were auctioned for and add a per/item column for stackable items. 
  • Skillet – Replaces the existing tradeskill window with a much more intuitive and filterable one. 
  • tekKompare – Compare moused-over or linked items to your own. 

Solo UI

Solo UI

Combat, Casting, and Buffs: 

  • Antagonist – Enemy timer bars for mob spell/ability cooldowns (bottom-right under HUD) 
  • DaHud – Heads-up-display that shows player health and mana/rage, as well as target health and mana/rage in side-by-side vertical bars with percentages. 
  • Autobar – Configurable button bar that allows quick use of all items you’re carrying in specified categories (i.e. food/water, mana/health pots, food buffs, etc) 
  • Elkano Buff Bars – Bars with timers for player buffs, debuffs, and weapon enchants. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Clique – Allows you to bind spells/abilities/macros to button presses (supports modifier keys like Shift, Alt) UPDATED FOR 3.0 
  • Chronometer – Timers for effects/abilities that are currently active, such as Root, Winters Chill, Sunder, etc (bottom-left under HUD). 
  • GrimReaper – Detailed combat info on what happened to someone.
  • Hourglass2 – Self timer bars for your own spell/ability/trinket cooldowns (bottom-center under HUD). 
  • MobHealth – Estimates target’s total hitpoints based on damage done and displays max/remaining hitpoints on the health bar. 
  • Quartz – Player and enemy castbar (also displays latency on player castbar for use with stopcasting macros). 
  • Mik’s Scrolling Battle Text – Will display damage/heals/effects that you receive and perform around the HUD. 
  • ZOMGBuffs – Easy assignment and performing of buffs for you/party/raid. Will also buy reagents based on you what specify.
  • SpellBinder – Allows you to map spells and macros directly to keystrokes without wasting actionbar space. 

Class Specific: 


  • Fizzwidget’s Feed-o-matic – Allows you to choose criteria for food choice and bind a key to quickly feed your pet. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Fizzwidget’s Hunter Helper – Shows you what skills are trainable by an animal in the tooltip when you mouseover them. 
  • Fubar_PetinfoFu – Quickly shows a great deal of info about your pet(s). UPDATED FOR 3.0


  • GrimoireKeeper – Keeps track of what Grimoires you’ve purchased and reflects that when you’re at the vendor. 

Chat Frame, Minimal

Chat Frame, Minimal

Informational and Misc: 

  • ACP – Adds an option to the in-game menu for loading/unloading addons specific to that character (supports load-on-demad mods) and also adds a reloadui button. 
  • Align – Gives you a grid to help align UI elements. 
  • Aloft – Allows you to replace the existing overhead nameplates with much more informative and configurable ones. UPDATED FOR 3.0 (BETA PHASE)
  • AMP – Answering machine that notifies you of any missed tells or AH updates while you were AFK. 
  • BugGrabber & BugSack – Grabs any UI errors and tosses them into a sack for review later. 
  • FishermansFriend – Makes the life of a fisherman a little easier (double-click casting, autoloot, etc). 
  • Fizzle – Adds colored border for rarity as well as durability information to gear on character tab.
  • FluidFrames – Allows dynamic resizing and positioning of any frame (currently only used for Combuctor). UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • GemQuota – Displays total of each gem color currently equipped on the character tab.  UPDATED FOR 3.0 
  • Healbot – Healing Mod of Awesomeness  UPDATED FOR 3.0 
  • Mendeleev – Displays extensive info about the moused over item in the tooltip (i.e. what it’s a component in, such as recipes/patterns). 
  • Message Redirect – Redirects error messages (i.e. “Out of Range”) to a chat window or combat log (or disable them altogether). 
  • Mybindings2 – Redsigned keybinding interface, configurable per-character. 
  • nShakedown – Allows you to quickly display sample GUI elements (i.e. timer bars) for easy adjustment of UI.
  • PallyPower – Buff Mod for Paladins UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Prat – Offers extensive configration of chat frames. UPDATED FOR 3.0 (BETA PHASE)
  • RatingBuster – Shows what stats on equipment equate to in the tooltips (i.e. how much % hit/crit comes from the stat, how much dodge the agility equals, etc) as well as a summary of the net gains/losses of the item compared to what you have equipped. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • SLDataText – Condensed onscreen info containing server time, FPS, latency, and mod memory usage. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Talented – A replacement to the default in-game talent window. 
  • TankPoints – Will calculate the effetiveness of gear in respect to tanking (also has a built-in calculator for performing your own calculations). 
  • TekJunkSeller – Automatically sells grey items when you open trade with a vendor.
  • TipTac – Improved tooltips. 
  • XPBarNone – Highly customizable XP/rep bar. 

PvP / Combat Text

PvP / Combat Text

PvP mods: 

  • Capping – Timer bars for BG objectives, BG/arena queues, etc. UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Proximo – Small unit frames for enemy units in arenas (allows binding of functions or spells such as interupt, set as focus, etc). UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • BattlegroundFu – Battleground information available via a Fubar plugin.
  • AreanFu – Arena information available via a Fubar plugin.
  • Fubar – A top bar (much like Titan) with an extensive collection of drop-in modules. It displays the following info at a glance: 
  • Money
  • Durability 
  • Number of guildies/friends online 
  • A micro menu (i.e. buttons for character sheet, LFG, Help, etc)
  • Reagents on hand 
  • Currently equipped gear set 
  • Number of accepted quests 
  • Free/Total bag slots 
  • And if you have mail waiting. 

It also displays the following detailed info if the icon or above info is moused over: 

  • Your status with all factions, colored by reputation level 
  • Experience information (i.e. XP/hour, estimated time to level, etc). 
  • Amount of money spent/earned that session/day/week as well as money available on other characters within the account. 
  • Durability status of each item equipped. 
  • Guildies/Friends that are online, their level, notes, and location (guild-only). 
  • Skills list and level, including weapons, tradeskills, etc. 
  • Farming info (i.e. keeps track of items farmed, such as cloth, motes, etc). 
  • Multitude of icons for mod configuration (also, right clicking on blank space will bring up the Rock Configuration, which gives direct access to config options for 95% of the mods installed). 
  • Top score (tracks your highest hits/crits of your spells and abilities). 
  • Specific info about mail awaiting pickup (i.e. auction’s won/lost). 

Unit Frames and Actionbars: 

  • Bongos3 – Actionbar mod with a generic predefined layout and basic keybinds/paging (the mod supports advanced paging based on stance/form, keybinding, and virtually any button layout). 
  • DrDamage – Shows estimated-average damage/heal on the buttons, taking into account +heal/dmg, crit, AP, etc. 
  • KGPanels – Used to create the backdrops for the chat/button frames. 
  • OmniCC – Shows the cooldown of a spell/ability on the button. UPDATED FOR 3.0

  • Pitbull unit frames with the following features: 
  • Player, Player Target, Target of Target (ToT), Pet, Pet Target, Focus, and Focus Target unit frames with castbar, class coloring, name, incoming estimated heal amount, and buffs/debuffs that you can cast/cure. 
  •  25 man and 40 man raid layouts with display of health, mana/rage, class coloring, name, incoming estimated heal amount, and buffs/debuffs that you can cast/cure (also colors the unit frame red if it has agro). 
  • Party frames that also show pet, the target player and pet, castbar for each, class coloring, name, incoming estimated heal amount, and buffs/debuffs that you can cast/cure (also colors the unit frame red if it has agro). 


  • Flight time to locations displayed in castbar. 
  • Ping Direction – Will show a large red arrow on your screen showing you where and who is pinging the minimap. 
  • Chinchilla – Square, scalable, movable minimap. 
  • Cartographer – A robust map replacement that shows the full content of zones (including unexplored areas). Also has the following features: 
  • Waypoints – Using “/way x,y” you can create a waypoint on your map (adds an arrow with distance remaining on your screen directing you towards the coordinate). 
  •  Notes – Using “/note x,y info_here” you can create a permanent note on your map with info to refer to later (can also – right-click to set as waypoint).
  • Routes – Allows you to define a route based on herb/ore/etc information for a zone that overlays on the minimap for quick and easy gathering.
  • CorpseWay – Will add a waypoint to direct you to your corpse (or instance portal) after releasing. 
  •  Gathering Info – Will overlay the map with known node information (mostly-complete database included) on various gathering professions (by default will only show locations for gathering professions you have). 


  • Atlas/Atlasloot – In-game display of instance maps, boss drops, and an assortment of other lootable items (i.e. badge items, craftable recipes, etc).
  • BigBrother – Fubar plugin that allows you to quickly query the consumable status of everyone in your party/raid.
  • Omen – Displays party/raid member’s threat for your currently selected target (will also parse KTM data that it receives). UPDATED FOR 3.0
  • Recount – Damage meter mod that tracks more information then you can imagine (capable of creating graphs and side-by-side comparisons). 
  • XLoot – A loot window replacement to the default blizzard frame with more options. 

The following raid tools are installed: 

  • Big Wigs – A boss mod that includes boss-related timers, notifications and a proximity window for certain events (i.e.Gruul’s Shatter). 
  • Loggerhead – Automatically turns on combat logging (to wowcombatlog.txt) when you enter selected zones/instances (preconfigured to record combat data at a 200yd range in all 25 man instances and Zul’Aman). 
  • oRa2 – A lightweight replacement to CTRaid (responds to all CT commands/requests). 


  • nQuestlog – Lightweight quest log replacement with quick view of watched quests and their objectives. 
  • Lightheaded – Adds comments for each quest from Wowhead so they’re viewable in-game (database downloaded and installed – does not query Wowhead each time). Many coordinates in quest log can be clicked on to set a waypoint via Cartographer. 
  • MobMap – Clicking on an objective in the quest window will (in most cases) automatically show an overlay on the map/minimap of where that objective or mob has been found/killed before (database included).          
  • Quest Helper – Quest Log tracking system that works well with Cart Way Points UPDATED FOR 3.0

My UI has been disabled for now, as things update I will try to reload the thing, but for now, I’ll grab the few updated mods that are essential to me and carry on in the world. Please note that I did not find all the websites for the addons, nor can I always tell if an update is 3.0 ready. Those marked as updated are because the website said they were ready. Those not marked could still work. You will have to try them and let me know.

For an all in one update, however, I recommend WoWMatrix.



Evolution of the UI

***Disclaimer*** Ive written this post three times now. For some reason when I add the pictures it screws up the post, So the pictures will be added to the bottom under the text. Each picture is small, but you can click on it for a larger view.

Im about as addicted to UI’s as I am to creating new toons. Each time I’ve tried out a new UI or Addon it seems to have taught me something new about the game. Not everyone enjoys them, I know. My husband for example would never stray from the Blizzard UI except to carry only the mods that our guild requires to raid. Even then he’s never happy about having to keep and update extra addons. He’s pretty set using his keybinds to heal and that works for him.

Me on the other hand? I like the flashy, the organized and the having all of my spells out so I can click them setup. This leads me to admit that yes, I am a clicker. I do occasionally use keybinds and macros, and they too work well. There’s just something about a mouse though. I prefer it, and I hope to stick to it. Even for my rogue, which in my opinion is button mashing at its best, I still use the mouse for.

For the most part though my UI has changed many times over the years, the list of core addons I use have not. Some of them (but not all) include:

Altas Loot Enchanced

I’ve seen entire compliations for UIs that guilds create and mandate for thier players to use. This is an intresting idea, and would be a good one except in my experiences in leading a guild I’ve learned that not everyone is computer literate. I also hugely support the use of Voice Over IP programs. While not mods, they are certainly helpful to any guild hoping to progress in the virtual world. I’ve played breifly with the Blizzard VOIP program, but was not impressed by it at all. I wish I could develop a UI for the masses, but I lack the kind of knowledge it takes. In setting up these UI’s and trying them out though I’ve learned a lot about each individual addon.

So basically in my opinion I’m PRO UI. I hope that anyone who reads this blog, and sees this UI will maybe give them a shot. While my UI changes constantly, my current one is easy to use as it pretty much sets itself up. I received no errors when I installed it and the only ones I added to it were Pallypower, Decursive, and Clique, You can find the download for this UI here.