Ask the Devs - Answers #3 "UI"

90 Night Elf Druid
14325
Are there any plans to implement further things into the standard UI that we currently rely on addons to provide?


It's possible for two different people in a single raid boss fight to have different values in Recount -- sometimes by as much as 2.5k. We assume it's based on a variety of factors including the distance between toons, network congestion, computers, etc. Since the instance server has the actual information, are there any plans to make it available to raiding group, perhaps as a download?
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85 Draenei Hunter
4860
03/29/2011 2:12 PMPosted by Waregil
We understand that players may not want to waste the materials until they have a buyer. Nor do they want to pay the Auction House cut on a 20,000 gold item when the volume on these items moving through the market is always going to be low. We are exploring some ways to solve this problem.


What about adding an in-game way for buyers to post what kind of crafted gear they want, without constantly posting in trade chat? Such as someone being able to let crafters know they want X item made, and are willing to pay Y price, without spamming trade chat until they find someone. Or it could work the other way, a kind of message board where a crafter could say that they want to sell X crafted items for Y price and then buyers could then whisper them or send them an ingame mail to let them know they want to buy it. The crafter part sounds alot like the auction house, but it would allow them to say that they are willing to sell the item, without having to craft it until they have a buyer.


I like this idea for a "Want Ads" format. Maybe have the interface object look like a bulletin board in the AH, or maybe a "broker" sitting at a desk. There are many times when an item is rare on the AH. Perhaps this interface could be linked to the mail system. There could be an option to allow sellers to see if the buyer is currently online. Perhaps it could be set to limit how many people can respond. If you want it to feel more "real", you could charge the advertiser a nominal fee, like the AH.
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100 Night Elf Rogue
14605


03/28/2011 8:14 PMPosted by Neke
Hope you are joking about not knowing how to handle milling prospecting. You can simply reuse the smelting UI. Except instead of the target materials, you'd have the source materials and you'd be able to pick which of them and how many of them to mill/prospect.


I agree, let's not create another clunky interface like the reforge UI. The Smelting UI seems like it could easily be reused to meet this requirement.
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100 Blood Elf Paladin
11665
***Q: Are there any plans to expand on the current mail system? It's rather cumbersome to have to withdraw, one-by-one, my mail when I have pages of it. – Patrïck (Latin America)

A: This sounds like it is really an Auction House problem. The mail system is intended to be a little throttled and slow to discourage spam and junk mail, and works just fine for “real” mail between friends, alts or guildies. The problem is the design choice we made to hitch the mail system to the Auction House. Players dealing with a high volume of commodities have no choice but to deal with tons and tons of mail (and this is particularly bad for diverse commodities with low margins, like glyphs). We are discussing different ways the Auction House can work, but we’re not convinced the right answer is just to make the mail system more automated.***

Just read the this Q&A and as a JC, who at times sells 35-50 gem cuts at a time, this stuck out to me.

As a suggestion why not add payment options to the AH interface?

Examples:

"Payment on Sale" (releases payment as we know now)
"Payment in Batch" (used when a high number of items are placed in the AH, selections for when 5/10/15/20/?? items are sold out of your list you receive a lump sum payment from the AH)
"Payment after Placement Duration" (When the time runs out on all your current auctions a lump sum payment is released to you, similar to how the items that are not sold are released after the placement duration though the payment is released in a lump sum as opposed to individual mailings with the items)

Other options might come to might after a discussion as well, but those three options should cover most of current population that uses the AH regularly.
Edited by Raeph on 3/29/2011 3:09 PM PDT
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80 Undead Priest
2855
Q: Would you please implement a feature that allows players to change the order of their characters on the Character select screen? – 흑풍육손 (Korea), Fanahlia (North America/ANZ), Perle (Latin America)

A: Sure. Does 4.2 work for you? :)


AWESOME

Q: Are there any plans to expand on the current mail system? It's rather cumbersome to have to withdraw, one-by-one, my mail when I have pages of it. – Patrïck (Latin America)

A: This sounds like it is really an Auction House problem. The mail system is intended to be a little throttled and slow to discourage spam and junk mail, and works just fine for “real” mail between friends, alts or guildies. The problem is the design choice we made to hitch the mail system to the Auction House. Players dealing with a high volume of commodities have no choice but to deal with tons and tons of mail (and this is particularly bad for diverse commodities with low margins, like glyphs). We are discussing different ways the Auction House can work, but we’re not convinced the right answer is just to make the mail system more automated.


The worst part of about this particular problem is when you have multiple auctions get bought or expire at once so you end up with huge list of individual mail totally worth maybe 100g but in 1g 50s increments. Perhaps you could set the auction house to combine money for all auctions bought within 1 hour of each other and send you a "recipt" mail last so that recipt is at the top so you can see who bought what. But if 1 person buys your 50 individual stacks of dust or whatever you don't have 50 pieces of mail to be shift-clicked one at a time.

This is probably not as easy as it seems.

Sudden thought: Perhaps it is, maybe add a "gold buffer" that would collect all monies made through auctions bought then every hour it would empty itself into a mail and you would recieve a recipt and a lump sum of gold.
Edited by Frapsable on 3/29/2011 6:13 PM PDT
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85 Tauren Death Knight
11975
I find it funny that the most talked about topic is where your characters appear on the login screen. It is good but really not that important.
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85 Draenei Shaman
7120

Q: What if there was a separated target system? For example, if I can set defensive and offensive target at same time then I don’t have to switch target to use heal or other emergency skills for our friend no matter what target I’m attacking. I think this feature is especially useful for some classes, such as Retribution Paladin and Shadow Priest. – Whitewnd (Korea)

A: We understand why that might be beneficial, and some games have gone that route, but we’re not huge fans of the idea for a couple of reasons. One, it just adds more complexity to the UI, which you can see from previous questions is something we’re trying to remain vigilant against. More importantly, we like players having to make the choice of who their target is. We don’t want to make the game so smart that harmful spells always seek out enemies and helpful spells always seek out allies. We do this in a few rare cases, like Discipline’s Atonement, but in general we want players to make the second-to-second choice about whether they are playing offensively or defensively.


What about if we could just have a second focus, or a "swap to prior target"? It's incredibly difficult to make efficient use of the redesigned resto shaman's dps-raises-next-heal behavior (even if you somehow have the mana, which you probably don't - I saw these two issues after a couple days and redid my resto spec to not include those talents). Or to heal and still be able to properly interrupt/purge a boss. Or even just to maintain a hex and/or a bind elemental while healing (providing a warning signal when a cc spell breaks - like the signals for our positive trigger effects - would be a good fix for this one). And I say this even using healbot, which lets me watch all my party/raid members much better than the new raid frames, and de-curse someone without changing targets. Without an addon like that, it's a lost cause - and that's a bad thing.

Incidentally, when you copy a UI mod, just copy the thing! Get the author's permission to use the code, and pay them a few free months or a special mount or something. Or rewrite it, but do it well. Don't give us a version that strips out half the functionality and much of the elegance, like you did with the wardrobe and questhelper. (I get that the "best path for all your quests" behavior was dropped as a resource hog, but you could still point the level 10 guy at the mountain pass to the next zone, instead of making him run along the mountain range trying to find a way through.)


And one more "ui" thing I'd really like to see - we need a difference between "report a problem" and "HELP!". "A guy is spamming" or "there's a typo in this quest name" = a problem to be reported, but dumped in a bin and gotten to at low priority. "I can't complete a quest because the monster is failing to spawn" or "I've been hacked and need my gear back!" is something that actually needs GM intervention or reprogramming ASAP. Splitting those sorts of things out would reduce wait times and "oh man I filled up my report screen and found another problem!" incidents, and let real issues get solved right away, while "was this guy really spamming?" or "inaccessible mining node" can be handed off to interns or handled in slow moments.
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28 Blood Elf Hunter
130
I was hoping for some insight into a clickable "Don't accept whispers from players not on your friends list" button in the interface (much like the "don't accept guild invites")

*sigh*

Guess that ain't happening.

But, hey..

Q: Would you please implement a feature that allows players to change the order of their characters on the Character select screen? – 흑풍육손 (Korea), Fanahlia (North America/ANZ), Perle (Latin America)

A: Sure. Does 4.2 work for you? :)


will be uber nice.

I also like the fact you are working at getting us away from the "need" to use addons. I'm not fond of them myself, but I do use 4 of them in game.
Recount
DBM
Healbot
Razer Naga

It's good to know there may one day be in game features to replace all of these, at the least.
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90 Human Paladin
11395
03/28/2011 1:59 PMPosted by Gerlock
If you are going to take the time to code this why not just remove this locked bag and make it a normal bag slot? Give new characters a 16 slot bag in their inventory on creation and let players upgrade as they go just like all the other slots.


On the Backpack issue:
It would be great if the backpack slot worked just like other bag slots.. except that there is a problem. Most people would never have this problem, but imagine someone wants to upgrade all of their bags. They go to the bank, unload everything in their bags, and then proceed to sell their old bags to a vendor (to make room for the new ones of course). Now they go to the AH and buy 5 shiney, new Netherweave bags. This person is so excited when they run back to the mailbox to retrieve their new bags.. Uh.. oh.. you have new bags waiting for you in the mailbox, but you don't have any bag space to get them out of the mail. Now your stuck with no bags, and no way to equip any bags.



Think about this in a real life situation .....
Would you really leave 5 bags in your mailbox because you didn't have any way to carry them? No. You would open the first bag, sling it across your shoulder and shove the other 4 inside of it.

As to how to put that into programming code, I have no idea.

Personally the size of the Backpack isn't as big an issue to me as having a boatload of tabards and spec-specific gear to worry about. I have an entire bag full of my Holy gear and would love someway to zip that down to one slot. Maybe for players that carry two sets of gear (be it RP stuff or Tanking stuff) one space in the Backpack could be a closet? I'm not sure what the answer is but one is out there somewhere ^^.

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Q: Are there any plans to implement further things into the standard UI that we currently rely on addons to provide? More specifically I mean things like Recount and Omen. - Bauertehpala (Europe [English]), Актинидия (Europe [Russian]), 柴德洛夫 (Taiwan), Terini (North America/ANZ)

A: We are experimenting with adding a threat meter to our new party and raid frames. Tracking DPS is a little trickier. We feel like it’s something we should offer but we’re still debating the right way to do it. It could be something that the combat log or the achievement statistics system (neither of which are anywhere as good as they could be) morphs into.


I would highly recommend some sort of available boss report window that pops up rather similarly to the victory/defeat window of a battleground/arena. You already have the system set up to record damage/healing etc, now if you make indicators for boss initiations/endings and have a window that shows popular information such as timeframe/damage/healing I think it would be a big hit. I would advise against it being an automatic popup, however. Some small button on the minimap that glows saying "View boss report" would probably be sufficient. I do understand that addons such as recount certainly take up a lot of resources but if we're already able to show the records of bg's and the like seemingly without much hassle it doesn't seem too farfetched.

03/28/2011 9:05 AMPosted by Bashiok
Q: What if there was a separated target system? For example, if I can set defensive and offensive target at same time then I don’t have to switch target to use heal or other emergency skills for our friend no matter what target I’m attacking. I think this feature is especially useful for some classes, such as Retribution Paladin and Shadow Priest.


A lot of people might actually be surprised to find that much of this IS in fact already possible with the standard UI. Under the Interface>Combat options you'll note that blizzard provides both a focus cast key and a self cast key. Now all you need to do is always set the current boss to focus (offensive target) and your regular target is always being picked from by clicking on it's respective raid frame (defensive target). This at least solves the basic issue using simple key bindings only. Now if you're like me and have every key bound from 1-6, q-t, a-g, z-v, and all of those with an additional second operation using shift, having a focus cast key might become rather tedious to do in emergency situations (ctrl/alt+shift+3), but I hope this was helpful to some of you.

I also double as a PvE and PvP healer and in 2's it could be potentially very helpful to have my partner set as focus with a designated focus cast key and a self cast key, I could essentially never have to take my target off an enemy that I'm wanting to keep track of for cc's. I'm assuming this would be the most efficient means if we were not provided with such good addons from the community, like gladius. And on that note, blizzard's enemy arena frames need some serious work : /

Also, don't be afraid to spend a little time exploring macros!
Edited by Greymir on 3/30/2011 4:44 AM PDT
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85 Blood Elf Paladin
0
I'm actually quite pleased with the answers. Although, I don't really see the point of this. Seems awful pointless, when time could be invested elsewhere.

Q: Would you please implement a feature that allows players to change the order of their characters on the Character select screen? – 흑풍육손 (Korea), Fanahlia (North America/ANZ), Perle (Latin America)
A: Sure. Does 4.2 work for you? :)


So if you were to transfer an 85 to another realm where you have all lower level characters, and then your 85 that you just transferred over appears at the bottom of them all; this wouldn't bother you? :P

I just did this and it drives me nuts to have my 85 at the bottom and a level 58 or so DK at the top...


No, this doesn't drive me crazy. I don't even notice it. How does anyone consider this an ace up Blizz's sleeve. This is the kinda BS that Blizz has to spend their time on because players can't handle having an 85 at the bottom of the list??? I'd ask who cares, but apparently a lot of people do. Just disappointed that time is spent on this feature. Pointless imo.
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90 Dwarf Death Knight
5785
I have noticed that the elite guards in Ironforge are still level 80, and even have excessively low health (and I imagine armor as well) than the normal, upgraded guards in Ironforge. In other cities (Horde and Alliance) these guards are level 85, have much more health than any other guard, and can defend their respective homes easier. Also, cities like Stormwind have numerous amounts of guards in Stormwind Keep, protecting Varian Wrynn. Although cities like Ironforge and Darnassus have a few guards, they are not elites, making them much more vulnerable. Could you please increase the level of these elite guards (along with other attributes) as well as please make the guards protecting various kings and queen etc. elites?
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85 Worgen Death Knight
5035
i know this might sound selfish but before cata.. all herbs were millable to get ink.. you made bloodthistle useless. i want my inks back. ::pouts:: there were 5 herbs in almost every level that made the same pigments. now it seems only certain popular choices make certain pigments.. come on it's hard enough making ink. why steal my cheaper herbs from me.
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85 Worgen Death Knight
5035
i was wondering if there is any plan on giving us any more of the outland, more of the original planet (argus?) or another burning legion world. also as azeroth is a round planet not flat like a map.. shouldn't there be another contintent i'm only asking because well no ship set sail going west of feathermoon toward eastern kingdoms and no ships seem to sail east from anywhere on eastern kingdoms. i know this sounds like new expansion stuff, but if you do use this maybe you could have different kingdoms in those lands.. maybe humans ..etc that are horde friendly and orcs etc that are alliance friendly.. because of some great wrong/right that was done to them (like a betrayal). or just a unknown land never touched by the alliance/horde wars..before now.
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95 Human Warlock
7390
Q: Before Cataclysm launch, you talked about maybe giving the chance to players of increasing their main bagpack number of slots. Are you still having that in mind or did you forget about that idea? It has been 6 long years with the same bagpack! – Proenix (Europe [Spanish])

A: Believe it or not, it’s just technically challenging. The original backpack just wasn’t coded with expandability in mind, and bumping it up now carries the risk of losing players gear, which of course would be catastrophic. It’s still on the list, but it’s not as simple as someone changing a 16 to a 24.


How about giving everyone a free 'X' slot bag, available at any innkeeper [just like the hearthstone] and make it unique so it cant be double equipped. This wouldn't that hard to do and still achieve the same effect.
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85 Draenei Hunter
6895
Hello. you may or may not see this post =/

I was wondering if we can get an account bound bank. something we can use to store account bound armor & other things. would be even better if it worked cross servers =)
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85 Night Elf Rogue
9275
bashiok i luv u...
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