SWTOR Dev Blog – Changeable Cooldown Animation Options On The Way

The latest blog update from the SWTOR devs addresses some of the feedback from the player community regarding the latest changes to the UI - namely the flashing that seems to turn your action bar into a nightclub when you're spamming abilities. The response from the team does show some responsiveness to community feedback, and in a couple of weeks we should be seeing new options to customize this aspect of the UI.

To recap the problem: The most recent weekly patch included a change to how the action bars displayed cooldown animations. When you activate an ability, the icons darken as a timer bar runs down the icon images, and now both icons and their borders flash a bright white when the cooldown finishes. To some, the bright flash on the action bar is distracting, particularly when using instant cast abilities that guarantee your bar flashes every 1.5 seconds. To others, the issue is more pronounced, it has actually caused discomfort.

Scheduled for Patch 1.1.4, the changes to the Cooldown animations bring a set of customizable options, mainly in the form of toggled effects:

Show Ready Flash: This option, when selected, will show the bright flash when an ability finishes cooldown.

Show Global Cooldown Ready Flash: This option, when selected, will show the bright flash when an ability finishes its global cooldown.

Show Cooldown Text: This option, when selected, will show the time remaining on a cooldown as an overlay on the ability icon.

Cooldown Text Size: This option adjusts the font size of the cooldown text that's used as an overlay on the ability icon.

Show Tenths of a Second: This option adjusts the threshold for when the game starts to show tenths of a second on the cooldown overlay text.

There will also be four general "styles" of cooldown animation to select from. The example screenshot is below, but at first glance it seems the differences will be in the brightness of the timer bar and the darkness of the icon as it's on reserve:

What these changes mean for you will vary, no doubt. I never had much of a problem with the UI changes from 1.1.3, but others had massive issues with them. However, I love this move. Seeing the team decide to implement choices, instead of a rollback or another sweeping changes, shows not only an ear to the community concerns, but a thoughtful process on how to address concerns. I hope we see more of this in future changes to TOR.