I have two primary healer alts – a level 54 priest and a level 70 druid. I have leveled them both through battlegrounds and dungeons, not very much questing. The priest has been Discipline her entire career. The Druid has been Resto for stretches, and a Feral tank for stretches. I waffle with her a lot (part of my many problems with her.)
I’ve used Vuhdo on both of these characters for some time – first with the priest, and then the druid. When everything is set up well with Vuhdo, it’s a great tool. Click click click Imma pro healer!
No, really! I’m pretty good at healing leveling five mans! (Of course, I gear like a twink, so as long as I can keep the heals going in the right direction, the tank usually stays up. Even if they’re using a 2H instead of sword and board.)
I should probably mention that these two characters have also served as my primary cross-server (and cross-faction) mules, so I get to set up their interfaces a lot. And therein lies my problem with Vuhdo.
The initial default setup of Vuhdo displays a lot of … stuff. Primary tank, group frames, buffwatch – and they’re all stacked on top of one another. The spells that are assigned to buttons – well, they don’t reflect the spells you might have, let alone the spells that you should be using. And turning on and off the frames isn’t intuitive. It’s just not – there is a tremendous amount of flexibility in the addon, but it doesn’t make choices for you.
This is a pretty common failing in software design, to be honest. I’m reminded of 37Signal’s controversial stance on making opinionated software:
Some people argue software should be agnostic. They say it’s arrogant for developers to limit features or ignore feature requests. They say software should always be as flexible as possible.
We think that’s bullshit. The best software has a vision. The best software takes sides. When someone uses software, they’re not just looking for features, they’re looking for an approach. They’re looking for a vision. Decide what your vision is and run with it.
(There are several posts along that vein in their Getting Real web book, which I encourage folks to read even if I don’t agree with it completely.)
Every time I have to set up Vuhdo, it’s usually after a period of activity on a character, so I’ve forgotten what exactly everything is supposed to do. That’s why the character became an heirloom mule in the first place! So the default configuration, of everything displayed, stacked on top of each other, and set to endgame spells, is completely wrong for what I want it to do.
Which, in turn. leads to me feeling overwhelmed when I log into those characters, which means I’d rather go play something else.
There’s another great post in Getting Real about Avoiding Preferences:
Instead of using your expertise to choose the best path, you’re leaving it in the hands of customers. It may seem like you’re doing them a favor but you’re just making busy work for them (and it’s likely they’re busy enough). For customers, preference screens with an endless amount of options are a headache, not a blessing. Customers shouldn’t have to think about every nitty gritty detail — don’t put that burden on them when it should be your responsibility.
Do what I want! I want simple raid frames in the center of my screen, with the abilities I can use available. I don’t need buffwatch, or private tanks, or public tanks, or tanks for the memory tanks – make it so when I first activate an addon, it’s got the most common settings!
SexyMap does this well, by the way. I know a lot of UI people don’t like the Stargate model, but a lot of folks do, and they keep the default. It starts off with an attractive modification and lets you customize from there.
The reason I complained about Vuhdo the other night, and the reason I think I’m going to move away from it, is because Vuhdo is too hard to set up when you don’t know the first thing about healing on a class. I don’t know what clicks should be primary, which should require modifiers. It’s not easy to configure. There are too many options. It’s like Pitbull in that respect. I really do think mouseover + raid frames will help me learn these two healing classes better, and make me a better healer.
When I’m a better healer, then it will be the right time for me to put Vuhdo back on my healers.
It’s a great addon – just not great for me, right now.