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UI Efficiency Tips, screanies?Follow

#1 Nov 15 2013 at 11:04 AM Rating: Good
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My apologies if this has been discussed too much already, but...

Essay below, TL;DR version: The default layout is a bit difficult for me to use well--info is a bit spread out and is for me easy to lose track of, who else has run into this and what have you done to compensate? Tips and screen shots are appreciated.

Edit to add: For PC.

Confession time, that THM in Haukke that nearly ignored your call for an LB? Yeah, that was me. Sorry about that.

You see, for some reason between watching for hit boxes, my threat, and my rotation I completely missed your order in the chat box until the boss fight was very nearly over. You were all-caps, but not in a **** way. Understandable. I'm usually quite good about it when the party leader requests LB on his or her command. I'm not in command of an encyclopedic knowledge of all the fights yet. I suppose knowing when to toss one out on my own is part of my job, but when a skilled party leader says they'll tell me when, I defer to their judgment. Except when I ignore my chatbox.

I didn't have this problem much in WoW, though there were a few simple, light mods that could clean up your interface and center your info in a halo of data goodness where you needed it. It's not completely hopeless in ARR, but I feel like it's a little busy or spread out--chaotic.

I've messed with the UI a bit, but I haven't had scads of time to put anything to the test and I'm nervous about altering my layout too much before a run else I completely ***** up. With FC buds, no biggie, but I feel a certain amount of responsibility to not be a dud in a DF group.

Seeing as I have a chunk of free time this weekend with which to try out some changes, I was hoping some of you might have felt the same way and have some tips or examples of your own UI you could share, set ups that maybe make things more efficient for a DPS who doesn't want to leave a hot, juicy limit break on the shelf when it should be used, etc.

Thanks Smiley: smile

Edited, Nov 15th 2013 10:58am by Lysus
#2 Nov 15 2013 at 11:43 AM Rating: Good
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#1. I increased the font of my chat boxes to 16 point. I shouldn't have to squint to read text. This alone made a tremendous difference. I also expanded the chat bar so that it bumps right into my action bars, and made the text of my party chat and FC chat brighter colors. You can pull out party chat alongside battle news into its own chat window, thus ignoring FC background noise.
#2. I dropped my party bar over to the right hand side, where it sat in FFXI. Put it wherever you are most comfortable looking.
#3. I rearranged all my actions on the cross bar so that things that get hit repeatedly are 1 through =s, and things that only need to be cast sometimes are on the 2nd bar, run by CTRL 1 through =. Basically, anything that doesn't have the standard cooldown doesn't get a special insta-cast spot for me.

At work so can't take a screenshot.
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#3 Nov 15 2013 at 12:14 PM Rating: Good
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1st: 1600x1000 - so I can click on the screen w/o dropping the game UI. The open space I have things like a parser I can see, ventrillio, internet.

Screenshot

2nd: 1920x1080 - Full screen where clicking my second monitor the screen will drop the UI down.

Screenshot

Be mindful I have 2 monitors..... 42" (1080p) main and 32" (720p) tv/monitors hooked up. My UI is based off the smaller of the resolutions so when I want to go out of full screen the elements fit in it. With the larger you will notice there is a bit more room between the elements. I have all the elements resized to the smallest possible size SE will allow us to work with my 1st resolution.


Again at work and will post them this evening when I get home between 6-7pm est

Edit: Added pics

Edited, Nov 15th 2013 6:35pm by SillyHawk
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#4 Nov 15 2013 at 12:21 PM Rating: Good
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On PS3?

So PS3 you just get one box. That's sad. So for PS3 I made a tab that excludes battle message AND free company and everything, except for party chat and loot. That way in-battle communications don't scroll away immediately. When I am in an instance, I click over to that tab to effectively silence everything else.

On PC, yay, you can dock chat boxes everywhere. I have 3 on screen all the time. One is chat-only, it does not scroll except for when people chat. On that one I still have a second tab I can click on to silence FC chat while in instances. Party only chat tab.

Then the other two are for battle messages and system messages respectively. My damage, of course, scrolls the battle box constantly. Even worse, the other box I have Errors turned on so I can monitor how my Macros are working. That box is spammed with a ton of errors for abilities in my macros that aren't going off because of cooldowns or such.

Either way, PC or PS3, I make sure to have a tab for instances, where party chat does not scroll.
#5 Nov 15 2013 at 2:39 PM Rating: Excellent
Another thing you can do is go into your chat filters and remove the items you find unecessary. There is a lot of extraneous information that comes through the Battle log. Separating your Battle log and streamlining what it tells you will help.
#6 Nov 15 2013 at 4:42 PM Rating: Good
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Quote:
Another thing you can do is go into your chat filters and remove the items you find unecessary. There is a lot of extraneous information that comes through the Battle log. Separating your Battle log and streamlining what it tells you will help.

This. Then assign group chat a bright color, and you're done.
#7 Nov 15 2013 at 9:18 PM Rating: Decent
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Rinsui wrote:
Quote:
Another thing you can do is go into your chat filters and remove the items you find unecessary. There is a lot of extraneous information that comes through the Battle log. Separating your Battle log and streamlining what it tells you will help.

This. Then assign group chat a bright color, and you're done.


He can do better than that. Play like the pros play.

@OP
First open your system menu. I don't remember the exact name, but you're looking for something that has the word 'HUD' in it. Click that.

Your screen will have a graph paper overlay(looks like the paper I used in geometry, trig, ect.) and you will see a bunch of box outlines that are labeled. Don't be afraid to adjust settings and play around with things in the configuration. You can restore it to the default if needed. I've found that moving the Party List(maybe) window somewhere more central, you can keep track of health and threat. Having everything where you need it is pretty central to playing effectively in most other games, the same should be true for XIV.

Next, take a look at your chat box.

Just below the cursor there is a bar with several options like 'General', 'Battle' and 'Event'. These are basically chat filters. Each time you click one of them it filters your chat to only display text from certain 'channels'. Now just to the right of those options is a button with a gear on it. Click that to open your chat settings. At the bottom of the window that opens up is a header with the word 'Filters' in it. You'll see the same 'General', 'Battle' and 'Event' listed. Click on the fourth button.

Behold the wonder that is... chat filtering. There are a lot of options for what you are able to see in chat. From here you can name the channel and select what chat will be displayed in that channel. You can also go back and rename the General, Battle and Event channels if you want to make another filter. As an example, I had mine set up for different situations I was in. I kept General chat for what I would read in town while crafting or something. I had a channel for when I was doing FATEs to restrict a lot of the spam. Another channel for instances so I could focus on only important information I needed to see related to the instance.

Real talk... you can move and customize your chat box, but it won't compensate for your inability to read it. From your story, it sounds like you should have already been expecting them to alert you in chat. It was in all caps and you still missed it? The info I gave you will make it easier to be a better player, but it won't do the job for you. You have all the knowledge you need to put the information where you want it. No excuse anymore for not being aware of it Smiley: tongue

Edited, Nov 15th 2013 10:22pm by FilthMcNasty
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#8 Nov 17 2013 at 12:25 PM Rating: Good
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Appreciate the input!

Adjusting the filters for chat is, of course, the obvious solution that I just didn't consider. In fact, on day one I buried the shout chat on it's own and out of sight to silence the RMT chatter--you'd think this would have occurred to me sooner, but oh well. I feel like part of my issue is that during some DF runs the group is so quiet I just neglect the chat altogether. Isolating it and blowing up the text size seems like an easy way to rectify that and with a high resolution it still doesn't eat up much real estate (thanks, Gnu, Skin, Rinsui!).

I think between Catwho and SillyHawk resizing the elements has also so far been the way to go. With the party chat blown up and the hotbars shrunken and tucked away I've made room to centralize the party bar a little better, for example. I'm the type who memorizes hotkeys, so having a bar visible is not really important unless I need to eye a CD closely--but that almost is never an issue.

@SillyHawk: So if I read that right, you run windowed most of the time and then blow out to full for instances, etc.? I might give something like that a try, I don't think I use my monitors to their fullest potential Smiley: tongue
#9 Nov 17 2013 at 12:46 PM Rating: Good
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Lysus wrote:
Appreciate the input!

@SillyHawk: So if I read that right, you run windowed most of the time and then blow out to full for instances, etc.? I might give something like that a try, I don't think I use my monitors to their fullest potential Smiley: tongue



Yes, i run at the smaller resolution so I can view other things without dropping the UI down when I need to. There are times when I go full mode, depending on what I have going on and the need click something else from my screens (watching netflix). If I'm taping an encounter I definitely will be full screen and have other things on the 2nd monitor so I can monitor that as well by visual.
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Time is but a window,
Death is but a doorway,
I'll Be Back
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