Effective keybindings for the one that knows that reaction counts

I've seen a lot of questions from people, searching to find a better way to keybind their abilities. But even thou they are looking after a better way, they are still looking the wrong way. Seeing nr 1 rogue on rankings useing 2 for Mutilate and seeing nr 2 rogue useing F for Mutilte, dosen't help you much, beside thinking that "everything goes" when you get used to it and skill > keybinds. Which is in fact true, but that dosen't mean that keybindings dosen't matter and you just have to get used to what ever you are useing. There are effective ways to keybind and less effective ways to keybind. For way too long, I've used B as Blind. And even tho it worked well, it realy isn't the optimal choice. I'll explain.

In case with B button, it's quite far away from WASD. I'm 1.84cm tall and got some thin long fingers, yet, I have trouble streching my Middle finger and Index finger between W and B and hitting them at the same time. This can cause (dosen't have to) some faulty key presses. If I don't strech finger enough, I'll hit V and Vanish. Also, if I let go the W button to press B button, I'll stop moving for a sec and target, if he is at max range, might get out of range for that split second. Other times you have to spam that B button while running towards your target. Either case, it's not the best keybinding to use for Blind. It works, yes. With practice it can work realy good. But it ain't the most effective way.

One last example. I type useing 2-3 fingers on each hand. It works just fine and I'm quite good at it. But any touch typeist will do it a lot faster, more efficient and with less errors. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Touch_typing)

So what I'll talk about here is not how you will keybind your Blind or your Regrowth, but teory of how you will in general keybind your diffrent bindings based on their purpose and way they are used.

L = Little finger
R = Ring finger
M = Middle finger
I = Index finger
T = Thumb

Let me just say a bit about diffrent finger assigments.
Little finger is slow and used only as modifier. A finger to press SHIFT or CTRL in combination with other keys.
Ring finger is not used that much.. Used mostly to press Q key and TAB.
Middle finger is your "walking finger". Used to hold down W key to move farward. Also used when standing still to hit 1-3 keys.
Index finger is your most accurate finger and also your main finger for pressing ability keys.
Thumb only used for SPACE.

Movement keys.



If you look at the keybord and look after what buttons your Index finger can press most easily you'll notice that they are all on right side. 3 not included since its uncomfortable to press 3 while holding down W key.


These [BLUE] button are your most important buttons. They are for your spamming abilities, get-out-of-jail abilities and such. For melee these are the buttons you will use the most when you are trying to stay on your target. Holding down W button and useing these keys is very natural and easy. For ranged as well. Abilities you use the most while running.

Then we have seconday row of buttons that work with running as well, but they are in a bit less comfortable positions.


These [DEEP BLUE] buttons are also button to use while running, but for abilities that are less used than the other 5. Button nr 3 is in particlare bad positions as your Index finger has to bump into your Middle finger. All thou it can be used as running button, I suggest useing it as stand stil button. Meaning only using it to press it with your middle finger while standing still. Choosing what to bind where here is a bit spec dependent and person dependent. But what ever one chooses, one must bind abilities that are used while running. Any other button is awkard for running purposes.

All abilities that require you to stand still, or abilities that do not require you to be close to your target, will use MODIFIER+BUTTON combo.


The 2 most used modifiers are SHIFT and CTRL. SHIFT is the one that is in natural position of your Little finger and therefore should be used first. CTRL modifier should be used in case you have way too many keybindings. But first bind SHIFT.

And what to bind SHIFT with? Again the running buttons.


SHIFT+[BLUE] buttons are also those buttons that are very easly acccesible. Even thou you have to hold down 3 buttons at the same time, all buttons are right under your normal hand position and thus don't cause you unnatural hand bending and streching. Therfore, if you have abilities that are used while running, fight dependant, meaning you are in a situation where you are pressured, like shapeshifting, these are nice to use. I'd go as far to say that these are even easier then just[DEEP BLUE] buttons to reach and use.
SHIFT+[DEEP BLUE] should be bind to abilities where you have time to press them. Meaning you are not pressured and can do it calmly. Remember, calmly.

MODIFIER+ BUTTON combo should only apply to abilities that are not melee dependant. If you have to stick on target + hitting 3 buttons at the same time, its the optimal thing to do. It's better to have only 2 buttons to think about.

Last 3 buttons.


Q is not a spammable button and should not be used that way. Its awkard useing it as spammable. But it is a button thats very easy to press. So I suggest useing it for a long important CD ability, like rogues Preparation.
1 and 2 can't be pressed while running. You have to stop - press - continue to run. Therefore 1 and 2 are abilities are target independent or ranged and pressed with Index finger.

If you count, you'll notice that you have 11 [BLUE+DEEP BLUE] button choices. With SHIFT that comes up to 22 choices. + 3 green button makes that 25 key combinations. Not counting CTRL modifier.

There are 2 more "buttons" I'd like to mention. They are on your mouse and I'm not talking about LEFT or RIGHT button. I'm talking about MOUSEWHEEL.


MOUSEWHEEL is extreamly fast and easily accessible. Every mouse has one, so no need to go out and buy new mouse with 10 more buttons. There are 2 options you have here. ROLL MOUSEWHEEL DOWN or ROLL MOUSEWHEEL UP. Pressing it can cause down or up rolling so avoid binding pressing of middle button to anything. In one motion you can literaly spam one ability around 4-6 times within a second. So abilities that you need very very fast reaction on, these 2 are the right buttons to bind. Like rogues KICK interupt ability or perhaps druids NS/HT macro.

Togather that makes 27 button combinations that are very easy to use without any complicated hand movements. These 27 should be enought for most players. But again, where you put what is important. I'm talking about AREA not specific button. Like Rogues MUTILTE is a spammable, mostly used ability. Whether I have it on E or C or 4 it realy dosen't matter as long as its on [BLUE]-AREA.

[BLUE] - Your mostly used abilities while running.
[DEEP BLUE] - Abilities you use often but not as crucial as [BLUE] buttons.
[YELLOW] - Modifiers. SHIFT is main modifiers as its right under your little finger so bind SHIFT first.
[YELLOW]+[BLUE] - Ablities that are not melee target dependent. Can be used while running.
[YELLOW]+[DEEP BLUE] - Only for abilities that you can use when you are not pressured and can press them calmly.
[GREEN] - Only for ranged and stand still abilities. (Except Q that can be used while running)
ROLL MOUSEWHEEL UP/DOWN - Cruicial abilities

As I said in the start, your keybindings won't get you to 2k+. Skill will. Unfortunaly I lack second part. When it comes to skill it ain't something you can get by changing your keybindings. Right keybindings will only make it a bit easier for you to aquire skill. And there is no short cut to skill. You have to know ever ability of your class in and out. Every ability of other classes in and out. You have to know all strategies for your setup you play and strategies what your opponents might use on you. Then comes the practicing part day in and day out. But practicing has its own way. Playing game after game will improve your skill, but very slowly. Do a recap after each game and see how you can improve. Think what you can do better and try it in the next game. Only by analysing the game, can you improve. There is a reason why some of the best players have they own sleeping tent right outside IF and Ogr.

Other tips:
* Camera Zoom In/Zoom Out - set it on ALT+MOUSEWHEEL UP/DOWN for zooming. To avoid zoomin in combat.
* Unbind things that you can accidantaly press like SHIFT+SPACEBAR. You don't want anything out of ordiary to happen while playing. (SHIFT+12345, SHIFT+MOUSEWHEEL etc that can mess up you actionbars in the middle of fight)
* Bind A and D to Strafe instead of Turning.
* Teamspeak/VT: allways on voice activated

Other tips for Rogues:
* Keybindings that should never be used in stealth goes on Action Bar 1 (Stealth bar/Normal bar).

It's not obvious, but you can bind SHIFT+SPACEBAR as well. I never use it thou but it is easily pressable.




Practice makes perfect.