Posted Mon, Jan 25, 2010 by Dalmarus
One of the most confusing things about any new game is the user interface. The space-side user interface certainly lives up to this standard. There's a lot going on and a lot to keep track of in combat. The last thing you want to be doing is trying to figure out the nuts and bolts of your ship while a Klingon Bird-of-Prey is breathing down your neck. Fortunately, this guide will get you up to speed in no time.
We'll use the screenshot below (click here for the full-size version) as our example piece. As you can see, this is the type of moment you need to know your systems. With multiple ships engaged and numerous disruptor bolts flying wildly, the last thing you want to be doing is trying to figure out where your defense preset key is.
We'll break down each section of the UI to make it easier to understand. This should keep it all from being too overwhelming for new players as well. If any button is grayed out, it simply means you are unable to use it at that time.
Clicking this button will bring up a second window with additional information about your target. Be aware that the window can be obtrusive, so use with caution during combat.
This represents the difference in levels to you. In this example, the window shows a "1", meaning the target is one level above me. A "-1" would mean the target was one level below me.
Target Hull & Shield Strength
Shows the condition of your target. Shield areas are represented in red around a ship icon. The percentage number in the middle shows remaining hull strength. Mousing over the ship icon will show the numerical value of both hull and shields.
Displays the name of your current target. Mousing over this will show the full name if it does not fit within the display.
This shows you who (or what) your target is currently targeting. The smaller targeting system works the same way as the larger, and will display all the information you need about the condition of your target's target.
Small icons will appear below the targeting windows. These represent effects that are currently affecting the ship. They will display buffs as well as hazardous effects.
This shows what tier a ship is. Keep this in mind when you’re out hunting. An enemy may only appear to be 1 "level" above you, but if they're in a tier IV ship and you're in a tier II, that's one battle you may not want to go into alone.
Displays the distance between you and your target.
Using this button will save you from a lot of running back and forth. Click here to complete missions and gather your rewards. New missions will also be available from NPC's through this window as you progress so check it often.
Using this button will scan the area for any anomalies. This is what you'll use to locate those precious alien artifacts, biological samples, and more to use for crafting.
If you've completed your mission (or don't have one to begin with), use this button to exit the system you're currently in. If you're in the middle of a mission, you can use this button to quit it. This option is not available if you are engaged in combat.
Rather than being some arbitrary in-game time, this clock shows the same time as your desktop, thus making it much easier to keep track of when you need to log off and get some sleep.
This window shows your current location. If a system name is too long for the window, mouse over it to display the full name.
Display Big Map
This will bring you to a map of the system or sector you are currently in.
This button will bring up your character screen. From here, you can access your equipment, skills, and more.
Opens your inventory window.
Captain's Log and Mission Journal
Hitting this button will open a new window from which you can access Episodes, Accolades, the Captain's Log, and your Communication Log.
From here, you can rearrange your HUD, access game options, chat settings, log out, or exit.
Help and Support
Allows you to access the library computer, request GM help, report a bug, get account support, and view your open tickets.
This is where you'll access PvP Queues, get your mail, visit the bridge of your ship (if you've chosen one), visit the C-Store (micro transactions), a music player, and the sharing settings.
WEAPONS, HOTKEYS, & OFFICERS
Any aft (rear) weapons you have equipped will show here.
Any fore (front) weapons you have equipped will show here.
Fire All Beams
Pressing this button will fire any and all beam weapons that are available. They cannot be in a cooldown mode and your target must be within each weapon's firing arc.
Fire All Torpedoes
Pressing this button will fire any and all torpedo weapons that are available. They cannot be in a cooldown mode and your target must be within each weapon's firing arc.
Fire All Weapons
Pressing this button will fire every weapon you have. They cannot be in a cooldown mode and your target must be within each weapon's firing arc.
This is where you'll place all the abilities you want at your immediate beck and call with the press of a finger. Right-click+drag an icon to remove it from your hotbar.
Pressing this button will bring up a window with any abilities you can drag to your hotbars.
Clicking this button will bring up a small "1 2 3" image. Click on the number of hotbars you want and presto!
Shows what officers you currently have assigned to each station and their corresponding abilities. While clicking on the officer's image won't do anything, their ability images act additional hotkeys.
Shows your current auxilary power ratio. The higher the number, the easier it will be to turn and perform other functions.
Shows your current engine power. The higher the number, the faster you can go.
Shows your current shield power. The higher the number, the faster your shields will regenerate.
Shows your current weapon power. The higher the number, the more damage your energy weapons will do. Weapon power has no affect on torpedo damage.
This is the Attack power preset. Hitting this will automatically distribute your power as shown in the image, with weapon power being the primary focus and shields being secondary.
This is the Defense power preset. Hitting this will automatically distribute your power as shown in the image, with shield power being the primary focus and weapons being secondary.
This is the Speed power preset. Hitting this will automatically distribute your power as shown in the image, with engine power being the primary focus and auxilary being secondary.
This is the Balanced preset. Hitting this will automatically redistribute power between all systems evenly.
Clicking this button will bring up a small "1 2 3" image. Option 1 is the default view as shown above in the presets. To adjust power levels in this view, you must hit one of the preset options listed above.
Alternate View 2
This alternate view works the same way as the default, but shows the power levels in graph form rather than numerical. To adjust power levels in this view, you must hit one of the preset options listed above.
Alternate View 3
This alternate view works the same was as Alternate View 2, but allows you to adjust each power scale individually. You can also save the presets you create by clicking on the image of the floppy disk. Pressing the rotating arrow will return power settings to their default values.
SHIP & HULL
Hitting this button will bring your speed to zero. Stopping isn't instant in space, but it is relatively close. When stopped, the icon will change into a down arrow. Hitting that button will begin moving you in reverse.
Shows the speed your ship is moving in terms of throttle position. The higher the bar, the faster you'll move.
Hitting this button will bring your ship to maximum speed. Impulse speed drains power from all other systems. It takes time to build those power levels back up, so while it is useful for getting somewhere quickly, be careful not to fly into combat. Getting hit by an enemy weapon will also drop you out of impulse speed.
Shows the percentage of hull integrity your ship has left. Your ship (and you along with it) will blow up if hull integrity reaches zero.
This displays the strength of your shields on each side of your ship. You can strengthen individual areas by clicking on the small arrow attached to each shield.
Crew: X/X members
Hull Repair Rate: X%
Along with displaying the name of your ship, this window shows the number of crewmembers available for work. The higher the number of crew, you faster hull repairs can be completed.