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-   -   Improving raid frames (Grid Style) (https://www.wowinterface.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21030)

Moonpool 03-11-09 09:12 AM

Improving raid frames (Grid Style)
 
What i like about Grid is the little "lights" that let me know what is on which toon, so I know at a glance who has my rejuv, lb, etc and who has someone else's and can gauge at a glance where my next heal is best thrown. That is the strength of Grid for me and I can't see myself replacing that functionality with something regardless of its click casting ability or whatever, that doesn't have that visual cue available to me - it is just the most efficient way for me to heal. Again, personal taste and built up "used to it" on my part that has nothing to do with nui and its layouts and your choices for it. Changing "muscle memory" and reflex thinking is NOT easy for me lol and I don't have the time to really retrain myself - four kids and spring = wayyyy too much time on the sports field.

Is the change to dual specs gonna give you a major headache? If so, I'll probably wait to overhaul my entire thing until you get it settled too.

spiel2001 03-11-09 09:30 AM

You misunderstood my question... I was asking what it was about Grid that I didn't know about that you needed... which you mostly answered.

Core functionality issues like this are what I'm trying to improve in nUI, so when someone is resistant to removing another mod they're using that I'm trying to incorporate into nUI, I ask why.

Can you elaborate for me on the mechanics of what it is that Grid is doing? I'd like to see if I can build some unit frame modules to support that and be able to add it to my own unit frames... the core questions are (a) what is the information you need to know and (b) what' the most effective way to present it? (in your opinion)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Moonpool (Post 119760)
What i like about Grid is the little "lights" that let me know what is on which toon, so I know at a glance who has my rejuv, lb, etc and who has someone else's and can gauge at a glance where my next heal is best thrown. That is the strength of Grid for me and I can't see myself replacing that functionality with something regardless of its click casting ability or whatever, that doesn't have that visual cue available to me - it is just the most efficient way for me to heal. Again, personal taste and built up "used to it" on my part that has nothing to do with nui and its layouts and your choices for it. Changing "muscle memory" and reflex thinking is NOT easy for me lol and I don't have the time to really retrain myself - four kids and spring = wayyyy too much time on the sports field.

Is the change to dual specs gonna give you a major headache? If so, I'll probably wait to overhaul my entire thing until you get it settled too.


Moonpool 03-11-09 10:35 AM

Ok, here's what grid does that I need it to that nothing else, to my knowledge, does.

In each person's "box" it has corner "lights" that turn on whenever a particular spell is cast on them, so in the upper right corner I can see at a glance whether a character has someone else's Hot's rolling on them, and in the lower center of the box, how many hots they have. Now, in the upper left I have separated out my rejuv (green light) lifebloom(red,yellow or blue light depending on stack) and regrowth (purple) as well as a timer for when LB runs out in the center left of the frame, so when I look down at my bars, i can see who has rejuv on them, who is just about to lose their lb stack, etc in a tenth of a second glance, no guesses. I also use the grid boxes to click cast my decursives (curse/poison abolish) which I understand can be done with your unit frames. My understanding of grid is that it is organized in layers - so each layer can have different information - it is a horridly complex mod that for all its faults, does work exceptionally well for people like me (gamer virgin with limited fps skills). the only things i click in combat are player unit frames and perhaps the odd potion, everything else I have keybound somewhere. (well on my hunter I do click to change aspects sometimes).

also, i assume without going back to read about it that your unit frames have aggro gain highlighting in some fashion - if not, then that is also a very very useful thing for a healer - I know that stupid mage is gonna need some heals quick when I see his box glow red and can preemptively cast something.

spiel2001 03-11-09 11:04 AM

Okay... I moved these messages into the suggestion box so we don't intertwine them with the bar discussion and so others can pitch in... also so this old fart programmer I know doesn't forget what we talk about ~grin~

I'm spit-balling here looking for a way to make this work without nUI having to keep a database of spells (something I have been actively trying to avoid because that's the first thing that breaks on patch day -- or you don't know about new spells and it stops working, etc.)

The big problem is this would be a HUGE pita to pre-implement for all classes, so I think it would be something the player would have to enable or set up for themselves on a case by case basis, though I suppose it could be done with plugins for each class. Gonna have to give all of that some thought.

What I'm thinking, for now, is I could add a feature to unit frames where you can choose to add "lights" (for lack of a better word) to the unit frame... I can give you six graphic styles to choose from... upper left corner triangle, upper right corner triangle , lower left corner triangle, lower right corner triangle, a movable square and a movable circle.

This all presumes a GUI config for this feature and it ties to the unit frame skin... so you can use one "config" for all of the raid frames in the panel, another for the player, another for the target, etc.) -- You "add" a light to the unit frame via the GUI and select the graphic style (corner, square, round, etc.) and a color.

Rather than try to keep and maintain a pre-made database of spells, I can build a list of all the spells your characters (combined) have seen in the game, so it will be "self-maintaining" so to speak. Using that list, you could just check off which spells turn the light on.

Then you check an option whether the light is on only for your spells or for anyone's spell and another option whether or not to show a count for how many times matching spells appear on that unit.

The only thing I'd have to figure out is an interface for setting more than one color on a light based on stack count.

This would allow you to fairly easy set up lights on the unit frames to suit your personal taste and need without me having to figure out in advance all of the spells there are and who wants them displayed how.

Any thoughts on that approach?

Brillynt 03-11-09 01:52 PM

Scott,

In grid terms those are called indicators.

For setting them up each corner of the raid frame is allowed to show different indicators. For example the default setup has one corner with a red indicator for who has aggro. During the setup of grid you can assign what you want to watch for each indicator.

Also grid has a center indicator area that can show other things to be monitored.

Brillynt

spiel2001 03-11-09 02:04 PM

Hmm...

I already have indicators for agro, curses, etc. I suppose I could actually just tie all of this into the feedback system at large and give you the option of selecting any of the four corners, the border, the background or a free-form square or circle inside the frame (that you could size and move) or a custom texture, then give you a list of things to trigger it... agro, cursed, magiced, diseased, poisoned or any of the spells you have seen in game.

That would actually make the feedback system much more powerful than it already is... and much more flexible for the player.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brillynt (Post 119802)
Scott,

In grid terms those are called indicators.

For setting them up each corner of the raid frame is allowed to show different indicators. For example the default setup has one corner with a red indicator for who has aggro. During the setup of grid you can assign what you want to watch for each indicator.

Also grid has a center indicator area that can show other things to be monitored.

Brillynt


Doomlord 03-11-09 02:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by spiel2001 (Post 119805)
Hmm...

I already have indicators for agro, curses, etc. I suppose I could actually just tie all of this into the feedback system at large and give you the option of selecting any of the four corners, the border, the background or a free-form square or circle inside the frame (that you could size and move) or a custom texture, then give you a list of things to trigger it... agro, cursed, magiced, diseased, poisoned or any of the spells you have seen in game.

That would actually make the feedback system much more powerful than it already is... and much more flexible for the player.

The power of Grid stands in this indicators indeed, but to be more precise, it stands in the flexibility of setting those indicators.

I can add any indicator (Those Colored dots in the unitframe's corners) for virtually any action. Wether it is a buff on the target, or a spell being cast on that specific target.

You mentioned early that you need to add a database with all spells. Why reinvent the wheel? The current Grid configuration does indeed have a list of predefined stuff for different buffs/debuffs mostly but you are also able to input the spellID or the spell name in a "wizard" and create your own indicator.

Grid is pretty complex and it's rather hard to explain it's feature over a forum. I urge you to install it and fiddle with it a bit.



P.S.: Indicators don't only refer to the four colored corners in fact. Indicators can also be text on the unit frame and also icons. Also, you can add more than four "colored squares" indicators.

spiel2001 03-11-09 02:21 PM

Well, I really want to avoid having a predefined database of anything if I can help it... the pet foods are bad enough as it is.

On the other hand, it isn't reasonable to ask the average player to know the spell ID's or even all of the possible spell names, either, which is why I had the idea of just keeping track of all of the spells you have seen cast on you or anyone else... then you can just use a checkbox to select the ones you want to use as a trigger.

Of course, I could/would still allow for manually entering spell ID's, etc., for those so inclined.

EDIT: PS... It's nice to see you in the forums finally ~grin~

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doomlord (Post 119809)
The power of Grid stands in this indicators indeed, but to be more precise, it stands in the flexibility of setting those indicators.

I can add any indicator (Those Colored dots in the unitframe's corners) for virtually any action. Wether it is a buff on the target, or a spell being cast on that specific target.

You mentioned early that you need to add a database with all spells. Why reinvent the wheel? The current Grid configuration does indeed have a list of predefined stuff for different buffs/debuffs mostly but you are also able to input the spellID or the spell name in a "wizard" and create your own indicator.

Grid is pretty complex and it's rather hard to explain it's feature over a forum. I urge you to install it and fiddle with it a bit.


Doomlord 03-11-09 02:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by spiel2001 (Post 119812)
Well, I really want to avoid having a predefined database of anything if I can help it... the pet foods are bad enough as it is.

On the other hand, it isn't reasonable to ask the average player to know the spell ID's or even all of the possible spell names, either, which is why I had the idea of just keeping track of all of the spells you have seen cast on you or anyone else... then you can just use a checkbox to select the ones you want to use as a trigger.

Of course, I could/would still allow for manually entering spell ID's, etc., for those so inclined.

EDIT: PS... It's nice to see you in the forums finally ~grin~

~grin~

That damned administrator locked the comments section. I feel like i left a part of myself there...


Ontopic : I do not know if this is of actual help or not, but there is another addon that relies solely on spell detection to do it's part. It's called Power Auras Classic. I believe its system is even more powerful that Grid's. Take a look when you have time if you're thinking seriously about doing Grid-style unit frames ^^

Gah, i need some sleep.

Moonpool 03-11-09 02:50 PM

I, too, use Power Auras intensively because it throws up visual reminders when I need to do stuff (reapply Serpent sting, or if Swiftmend is available). It is an amazing mod and one of a few I would keep despite using nui.

It sounds like you have the general Grid "lights" idea down, and i don't care what the shape of the lights are, or their colors to be honest (though the stacking of the lifebloom is pretty important - maybe deconstructing GridStatusLifebloom would be a place to start). I would be happy to check off spells, or shift click them out of my book, or to be perfectly honest...spell the dang things - that element never bothered me a bit. Tying it all to the feedback system sounds exactly like what I'm used to with Grid - a few extra indicators (I believe I use at least two at each corner) and a center box for curses/poisons is what I use, and I know a lot of healers use as well.

Listen to Brilynt..she knows much more about it than me lol, just a healer tryin to keep peoples alive here...when i'm not killing them on the huntar RAWR.

spiel2001 03-11-09 04:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doomlord (Post 119815)
That damned administrator locked the comments section. I feel like i left a part of myself there...

I asked her to because it was becoming more and more difficult for me to support nUI in so many different places... the comment board here, the comment board at WorldOfWar.net, the comment board at Curse.com, the forum a WorldOfWarcraft.com, this forum and e-mail... now they are all closed except this forum and e-mail and it is much much much easier for me to answer everyone's question and, hopefully, it will help reduce how often I have to answer the same questions three and four times a day.


Quote:

Ontopic : I do not know if this is of actual help or not, but there is another addon that relies solely on spell detection to do it's part. It's called Power Auras Classic. I believe its system is even more powerful that Grid's. Take a look when you have time if you're thinking seriously about doing Grid-style unit frames ^^

Gah, i need some sleep.

Will do and thanks for the tip.

beatific 03-12-09 09:11 AM

Interestingly I was going to try and put together a post about the raidframes in NUI in realtion to Grid.

Let me preface this by saying that I am a healer, and I highly value raidframes functionality to make my job easier. I would have to say that they are perhaps the most vital component in my UI. I have been using Grid for a very long time, and there are things about it that I think are extremely valuable. Listed in no particular order:

The ability to color the raidframe by class
Aggro alerts (I actually use a text based aggro alert - center text of the frame)
Hot timers
Customizable Buff/Debuff Icons
Centralized raidframe structure/party structure

Class color is important in that it helps identify healing assignments - I prefer to have less to choose from to read. Aggro alerts - I find it extremely helpful to have a large text based aggro alert center of the raidframe itself. Hot timers and customizable buff/debuff icons are exceedingly helpful...a huge center icon for instance indicating Mutagen Injection is much more helpful than a small one in the corner of the frame. And centralized raidframe structure based upon party, because what I am finding is that under raid circumstances having to scan two sides is much more difficult than having to scan just a single bank of frames.

Under most circumstances these things likely sound a bit like overkill - but healers live and die - literally ;-) - by their raidframes. For my own personal experince with this, I am finding that when I am single target healing, Nui's raidframes are adequate, especially with the Hud, but if I am assigned to raid heal, or heal Frost Tombs/Mutagen etc. I find myself using the Grid plug-in. Not sure if any of this is helpful - just some of my own observations.

bakes82 03-12-09 09:49 AM

Is there anyway to integrate the part of gird/healbot that shows the estimated amount of heal incoming?
IE (X = Current HP, H = Estimated inc heal, R = Remaing health to heal)
XXXXXXXX|HHHH|RRRRRRR| (Need to heal)
XXXXXXXXXXXXXX|HHHHH|HHH (Target will be overhealed)

I dont think nUI currently does this other than it lights up the background as green and if there is a HOT on that person it stays green.

Personally I dont like grid, I used healbot more as it did everything the same for the most part, I also use decursive so I dont care what is on other people if I can cure it. But I do understand how it works and I like the idea of having diffrent corners being definable for certain buffs/debuffs etc.

Holy Pal would need to know BoL and SS

Though grid was nice to be able to sort the groups into classes or by groups, but I dont think nui can do that since the frames are split into two sides.

Would it be possible to make the hp/man bars go vert in nui that would free up some space for all these indicators?

Hakana4155 03-12-09 11:21 AM

I'd like to make a suggestion on this topic. As I understand it there is a mod that will place the Grid frame in the info panel on the right of the screen. As a healer you can dispaly the Grid panel while in combat customized to how you want it. That way Scott isn't re-inventing the wheel, as an earlier post mentioned. I don't think that nUI can incorporate every possible combination of unit frame information that currently exists in all the different addons without getting way to bulky to use.

I think in this case the best solution is to continue using Grid with the addon that moves it to the infopanel on the right side of the dashboard. This way the unit frames that are part of nUI can keep from being too complicated to work with especially in a 25 man raid situation. There would reach a point where there was so much information displayed per player that you wouldn't be able to read any of it.

Of course this is just my opinion and I thought I would share it.

spiel2001 03-12-09 11:28 AM

In most respects I agree with you... however, it is and has been my goal from the get-go to replace Grid with nUI and I do think the functionality being described here is quite integral to good unit frames.

With that said, out of the box, I would expect nUI's unit frames to work exactly as they are right now... edge highlights when agro'd/cursed/diseased/etc and background highlights for hits and heals. Changing that would be via options. So... for the average player, the unit frames would remain relatively complicated, for healers and advanced players they can enable the pieces parts they need.

The usability thing is a huge issue and you are dead right that turning all of this on by default would make the unit frames unusable for most players... I appreciate your thoughts on that. Thanks.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hakana4155 (Post 119930)
I'd like to make a suggestion on this topic. As I understand it there is a mod that will place the Grid frame in the info panel on the right of the screen. As a healer you can dispaly the Grid panel while in combat customized to how you want it. That way Scott isn't re-inventing the wheel, as an earlier post mentioned. I don't think that nUI can incorporate every possible combination of unit frame information that currently exists in all the different addons without getting way to bulky to use.

I think in this case the best solution is to continue using Grid with the addon that moves it to the infopanel on the right side of the dashboard. This way the unit frames that are part of nUI can keep from being too complicated to work with especially in a 25 man raid situation. There would reach a point where there was so much information displayed per player that you wouldn't be able to read any of it.

Of course this is just my opinion and I thought I would share it.


beatific 03-12-09 11:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hakana4155 (Post 119930)
I'd like to make a suggestion on this topic. As I understand it there is a mod that will place the Grid frame in the info panel on the right of the screen. As a healer you can dispaly the Grid panel while in combat customized to how you want it. That way Scott isn't re-inventing the wheel, as an earlier post mentioned. I don't think that nUI can incorporate every possible combination of unit frame information that currently exists in all the different addons without getting way to bulky to use.

I think in this case the best solution is to continue using Grid with the addon that moves it to the infopanel on the right side of the dashboard. This way the unit frames that are part of nUI can keep from being too complicated to work with especially in a 25 man raid situation. There would reach a point where there was so much information displayed per player that you wouldn't be able to read any of it.

Of course this is just my opinion and I thought I would share it.

That's exactly what I'm doing atm and yes, it works. However having the raidframes all the way to the right like that means you aren't focused on the center of the screen which can be pretty vital. That's why the HuD is so nice to have - it keeps your eyes focused on the center of your screen. BTW, I have all of this information listed above and more displayed in the Grid frames all in that little info panel and they are still extremely easy to read/use.

Quote:

In most respects I agree with you... however, it is and has been my goal from the get-go to replace Grid with nUI and I do think the functionality being described here is quite integral to good unit frames.

With that said, out of the box, I would expect nUI's unit frames to work exactly as they are right now... edge highlights when agro'd/cursed/diseased/etc and background highlights for hits and heals. Changing that would be via options. So... for the average player, the unit frames would remain relatively uncomplicated, for healers and advanced players they can enable the pieces parts they need.

The usability thing is a huge issue and you are dead right that turning all of this on by default would make the unit frames unusable for most players... I appreciate your thoughts on that. Thanks.
Awesome news:-) TBH I will happily remove Grid when the time comes because I really feel that you have created something pretty amazing! Looking forward to all the neat new developments.

~Bea

Doomlord 03-12-09 02:17 PM

One more thing that i consider an extremely impoertant part of Grid. The actual unit frame doesn't display numbers for health nor mana. There's only a bar for each one that fills up or gets lowered depending on his/hers mana/health.

The only number displayed is when someone throws a heal on target X for example, you get a text indicated the amount of health that will be healed.

Other than that, Grid doesn't display any other text which is awesome as there isn't any "bloat" information. Also, as an extra bonus, over the Health/Mana bars the Name is displayed (unlike nUI which has that above those bars)

Currently on a 25 panel, one's unitframe's show : Name, HP, Health Percent, A Huge Health bar and a Mana bar.

I attached a screenshot to better explain this :

http://i44.tinypic.com/oqiykh.jpg

As you can see, the people OOR have their unit frames faded, the healthbar is colored depending on one's class, under that there's a tiny mana/rage/runic power/energy bar. Acrux (the mage) was just getting hit so his frame was highlighted. Also, look at his frame how his name got replaced with the health missing (Max Health - Current Health).


P.S.: In my current layout the frames are sorted by the group number with the MT ( I guess they have an algorithm to determine that) listed first and the Raid Leader second. (So there is no need for that group number feature directly on the frame)

beatific 03-12-09 05:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doomlord (Post 119949)
One more thing that i consider an extremely part of Grid. The actual unit frame doesn't display numbers for health nor mana. There's only a bar for each one that fills up or gets lowered depending on his/hers mana/health.

The only number displayed is when someone throws a heal on target X for example, you get a text indicated the amount of health that will be healed.

Other than that, Grid doesn't display any other text which is awesome as there isn't any "bloat" information. Also, as an extra bonus, over the Health/Mana bars the Name is displayed (unlike nUI which has that above those bars)

Currently on a 25 panel, one's unitframe's show : Name, HP, Health Percent, A Huge Health bar and a Mana bar.

I attached a screenshot to better explain this :

http://i44.tinypic.com/oqiykh.jpg

As you can see, the people OOR have their unit frames faded, the healthbar is colored depending on one's class, under that there's a tiny mana/rage/runic power/energy bar. Acrux (the mage) was just getting hit so his frame was highlighted. Also, look at his frame how his name got replaced to the health missing (Max Health - Current Health).


P.S.: In my current layout the frames are sorted by the group number with the MT ( I guess they have an algorithm to determine that) listed first and the Raid Leader second. (So there is no need for that group number feature directly on the frame)

Agree with all of the above ... well put!

thesnowedone 03-19-09 03:45 AM

A thought that I had on this for simplying the raid frames a little is to have some simple mode settings:

Tank Mode
This has an emphasis on threat and aggro - perhaps with larger spaces for people who had definate aggro and larger threat bars.

Healer Mode
This one focuses on health and debuffs - with health in deficits (so you can budget the size heals you want to do) and larger spaces for debuffs as well as configurable buff timers so you can track things like rejuv/renew/lifeblooms.

DPS/Default Mode
Mostly similiar to now.

You could then have a switch/toggle to go between all modes.

spiel2001 03-19-09 04:16 AM

That's actually a pretty interesting idea. It would kinda complicate things a little bit because I would effectively have to have three layouts per unit frame skin, but it would be do-able.

I'm gonna have to give that some thought.


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