I got hooked on WoW from the moment I made my first character. I found the game to be a visual treat with an easy to use interface.
… and now my screen looks nothing like it did back then. I have systematically replaced a good portion of the user interface (UI) by downloading addons that helped my experience in some way, and from what I’ve seen there are people who’ve gone even further than me when it comes to redoing how you interact with the game.
- Auctioneer: My first addon ever, and still used almost every day to help bring in the big bucks. If your system can’t handle it you can always try AuctionLite, but I’ve found Auctioneer is the one that has the features I use.
- FuBar: Totally pointless by itself, FuBar allows you to use an entire subset of addons that are placed in small horizontal bars at the top and bottom of your screen. (You can move and/or turn off the bars if you need to.) Any addon name that ends with “Fu” probably uses FuBar. Speaking of which…
- PerformanceFu: System seems to be going slow? Wondering if it’s latency, lag, or just TOO MANY ADDONS installed? (*cough*) This one measures what’s going on and can occasionally speed things up for you. At the very least it’ll tell you which addons are the system resource hogs.
- GarbageFu: Puts a new button on every vendor’s window that allows you to sell ALL your grey items in one click. Also, if your bags are getting full you can shift-click to get rid of the cheapest grey item in your inventory to free up some space.
- Omen: Threat management is a must, even more important than who’s doing the most DPS. While I’ve abandoned my DPS meter completely I still like to make sure I’m the biggest threat when tanking and not the biggest threat when doing anything else. Omen let’s me know if I’m doing it wrong before someone who isn’t supposed to be the meat shield becomes the meat shield.
- AuldLangSyneFu: Tells you how many friends & guildmembers are online, as well as other information. I don’t gnow how I ever GMed without it, but I find it’s useful even on my characters that are in other guilds.
- Bartender: This got installed when trying out another addon which I ended up despising, but Bartender is awesome once you get past the “What the heck why are all my buttons in the middle of the screen?!” moment. True, it takes some configuring to get it the way you want it, but with that reorganization I was able to make my UI much more intuitive. (That means I die less, and when playing a healer that means everyone else dies less too.)
- Power Auras: Notification system (mana low, mana high, rage high, health of player X is low, debuff on mob X has worn off, etc.) is one of the ones that requires a higher level of geekiness. After installing it it you bring up it’s configuration window by typing /powa (as in:” I have it.”). Even then it might take a bit or a lot to get used to it, but fortunately you can import settings made by others and some people managed to pave the way for us so you can look at what they did and modify it to make your own.
- Carbonite: Tells you where to go to complete quests, shows unexplored areas of the map, shows more in your minimap than you really should be able to see, allows easy transfer of friends lists between alts, and a few other features too. This used to be an addon you had to pay for, but now it’s free and has replaced two other addons of mine (QuestHelper & Cartographer, if you’re curious). The settings that controll it are … almost more confusing than Power Auras. However once you bang your head against the keyboard enough times to get it the way you like it (Warning: Get a spare keyboard if you really want to configure it using this method. Preferrably someone else’s keyboard.) you’ll wonder how you played without it before.