Anyone have Any Experience with WoW UI Mods?

–Note, I posted this on the WoW forums yesterday, but noone seems to have answered me (not surprising because of the scope it’s bound to be a niche). And the Dope seems like at least a good shot in the dark for finding people that have screwed around with this stuff in the past, this post will remain unchanged. So any FAQS or anything I mention (which I did only in passing) aren’t relevent–

So, for some odd reason I was drafted to do something akin to a “let’s play” (hereby reffered to AS a let’s play for simplicity) for WoW. God help me…
(and I skimmed the FAQs and if I missed anything I ask I’m terribly sorry)
Anyway, my overdo-everythingitis and my friend’s ability to jump onto jokes and make me actually do them has catapaulted me into the territory of making my own UI mod, maybe you could call it a skin. The first question is (possibly leaving everything else null and void) “Is this legal?” I understand reskinning mounts, characters, weapons etc is against rules but the UI seems more flexible. Am I allowed to screw with the UI skinning and aesthetic looks or is that going to far? As a let’s play (and the style I’m doing) I need something a bit sleeker and a little less intrusive for the mad screenshot mashing while still allowing a good deal of functionality.

If the answer is no: nothing to see here, move along.

If yes:

  1. What’s the extent of what I can change? Is it limited to the basic buttons-and-minimap UI or can I get more flashy and change the feel of, say, dialogueboxes as well (I will not need to alter the esc menus or keybinding menus except to possible extent of clarifying the now changed “action bar button 1” stuff).

  2. Can I resize and alter the location of my character portrait? Since my tablet laptop with Photoshop CS2 is out of commision temporarily I offer to you a hilarious MS Paint rendition of my proposed UI design.
note: not nescessarily to scale. It was hard to visualize and label soemthing the right size on a small blank picture. Also, I haven’t decided on a theme, I’m trying to think of it almost like a dream, but I’m racking my brain for something unique and good looking. Also note that the character portait when left (or double) clicked would bring up the character sheet.

  1. I program so I can probably figure out LUA via tutorials I find, but just to put it out there, is there any way to do an autohide via scrolling? (Also if anyone can link offhand a really good LUA tutorial/reference site they reccomend I’d appreciate it). As you can see in my design I want the follwing:

On the LEFT side of the dotted line, I want everything to zoom out of view to the left.
On the RIGHT side, eveything should vanish except my character portrait w/ health/mana debuffs (and the mob info).
The pane with social, GM etc should go out of view faster.
The minimap will take the longest to go out, and will leave upwards.
All the relevent areas will be brought back on mouseover. (i.e if I put my cursor to the bottom that pane will come in from the right and left)

  1. As you can see on point 5 of the diagram, that icon is for professions. My idea was for it to detect from your spellbook your current professions (both primary and secondary) and when you click on it, little circular icons would pop up around it.
    Say I have mining and engineering.
    Mining: Clicking on it will bring up a small dropdown menu with smelting/detect minerals as choices
    Engienering: Brings up the crafting window.

  2. Backpack is similar to professions, I had two conflicting ideas:
    A. It would detect quest items, potions etc and when you clicked on the relevent buttons it would open up a window with the potion “pocket” (though relistically they may be in different bags).

B. It would bring up mini-buttons pertaining to each bag (not too hard I would think).

So yeah, I got myself in pretty deep here, but I’m both determined and (as i said) held to this by my friend so I’ll work on it, even if I have to fiddle with a few basic mods to learn LUA before actually tackling this specific mod. Also, if anyone could quickly run down or post a link to a tutorial over importing UI skins like this (I know they’ve been done, allowed or not, obviosuly if not ignore this) it would be a great help.

I’m not playing WoW any more, and wasn’t doing UI mods myself when I was, but…

The sky’s pretty much the limit with regard to reskinning the UI. You can change the look and feel, you can move stuff, whatever you want. I would encourage you to look around and see if you can find something that’s already most of what you want and then modify it.

If you were intending to actually play, I would tell you that FuBar is essential. QuestFu, XPFu, GarbageFu, are the ones I recall being key plugins. For managing inventory, Baggins is king. If you intend to ever deal with the Auction House, Auctioneer is a must. My friends who raid tell me that BigWigs is essential for that.

Thread from the Lurker Lounge that gave me lots of insight:

Yes, UI mods of the type you’re talking about are allowed.

I think the Titan UI mod actually does a good bit of what you’re after, so you might want to check it out. I’m afraid I don’t have any experience making-wise, so I can’t really offer any advice on that front.

The UI mods that are out there let you do pretty much anything you want. You can make them pop up different action bars when you’re in combat, stuff like that. Moving icons and buttons around is pretty standard. There are one’s with animated portraits. Really anything you want. I haven’t played since August, so specifics aren’t coming to mind. Nurfed I think is a good one.

The old discord Add on would allow you to do a lot of what your talking about; reshaping unit frames, mouse over, adding your own artwork, etc.

It was very flexible but not very robust as almost every other patch broke it. You may get an idea as to the structure of a program you can work from it. As add ons are open source you may be able to use its script as a stating point.

Also there are quite a few add ons that will already allow you to redesign the player and target portraits. Even 3D animated ones. As well as ones for manipulating the Mini map.

I would suggest searching through the above 'cite. It may save you some time reinventing the wheel.

I think FuBar, Bongos2, xPerl Frames (or Pitbull), and Prat would probably cover most of what you’re looking to do here. It wouldn’t be a perfect fit, but it would be close.

I used the Discord addon for a long while before TBC came out. I quit shortly before then, and have only very recently started playing again, this time without Discord, so I don’t know if it still works. I loved the functionality of both Discord Action Frames and Discord Bars, but good god trying to fix it after a patch made me want to rip my hair out.

I use TitanBars and Bongos2. Just to show you what it lets you change:

Here is what my Rogues UI looks like. The bars at the top and bottom are due to TitanBars and the changed look of the UI is due to Bongos2. To show what Bongos2 lets me change, look at this screenshot. All those boxes can be moved, hidden, resized. You can add more boxes too if you need them, 10 bars is plenty for me. It wont let you change or resize the portrait though…

Another example here.

Here’s a few shots I did for another purpose but they show something similar to what you’re suggesting

Screen 1, showing range fading of the raid group and debuff colouring

Screen 2, showing buff timing on target and expanded tooltips

The basic mods seen are:

pitbull: For the change and move of my character details. The raid frames and basically everything that isn’t buttons.
Bartender3: For the action bar changes (resizing the druid shift bar included)
Quartz: For the buff timers in screen 2. The mod also replaces the default cast bar wth something way better.
Fubar: For the bars at the top, which are home to a motley collection of other mods.
DrDamage: For the hugely extended tooltips full of nerdly goodness
Prat: For the chat window colouring and timestamps.
Mods used are all from . They provide versions of most popular mods which are pretty well tested together and they have an autoupdater so that you can update all your mods with a button press.

Edited to add:

Check out Baggins as a replacement bag mod. It takes a while to set up, but it will sort your bags into quest items, tradeskill items, armour (useful for those of us who obsessively carry around 5 sets) and so on.

I found a demo screenshot of Baggins and ratingbuster hanging around on my machine