The user interface, more commonly known as the UI, is a collective term referring to the windows, buttons, and onscreen controls that the player uses to interact with and control their Aion character. More specifically, the HUD, or Heads-up Display refers to the controls, while the UI can refer to other in-game functions such as hotkeys, option menus, etc.
The HUD is the player's main form of interaction with their character, both to see the status and location, as well as to issue commands to tell the character what to do. Aion has two built-in options for the HUD. There is a Bottom HUD, where as the name suggests, most of the information is located near the bottom of the screen, and a Top HUD which contains most of the status displays near the top of the screen. Choosing a HUD is primarily a matter of user preference, but there are some slight differences in the information contained in each. To switch between the bottom HUD and top HUD, access the game options window, and choose the desired option.
The following descriptions refer to the annotated screen shot of the bottom HUD shown at right:
- Action bar - This bar is customizable by the player to contain icons of the skills commonly used. Players can activate a skill by clicking on the icon, or by pressing the hotkey associated with the action bar slot.
- Minimap - The minimap shows the immediate surroundings of the character, showing enemies, friendly and neutral creatures, quest givers, quest receivers, and the location of the current quest target, when activated.
- Game time - This icon shows the current time of day in game. Game time is different than, and advances more rapidly than real time.
- World map - Clicking on this icon brings up the world map, which is a map of the entire region the player is currently exploring.
- Flight meter - The green bar around the circumference of this meter indicates remaining flight time. Clicking on the meter engages flight, if the character is in a flight-enabled area.
- HP, MP, DP, and XP bars - Each of these meters play a part in indicating the status of the character. HP is the player's health, MP is the player's mana points, DP is the player's divine points, and XP is the players experience points.
- Character level and portrait - The character's current level is shown as a small number to the lower right of the character's portrait.
- Game options - Clicking this icon brings up the game option menu.
- Influence ratio - Clicking this icon opens the influence meter window.
- Target information - HP, MP, level, and other information about the currently selected target appears here.
- Buffs - Any beneficial spells (buffs) affecting the character are shown here.
- Party - Names and status of any party members is shown here, when in a group.
- Chat window - Messages from the game, other players, and NPCs are shown in the chat window.