Warning: This is NOT a clicker versus keybinder post. This post is all about ME and I happen to keybind most of my abilities. Any comments the devolve into name-calling around a preference for clicking or binding will be removed. There are places for that kind of discussion, like the official WoW forums.
So… many a moon ago, back in high school… I fucked up my left hand. It involved a very sharp knife, a sink, some soapy water, and a trip to the ER at 10 on a Sunday night.
Therapy and surgery later, I still don’t have full use of it. My ring finger does not straighten and the pinky tends to have a mind of its own. Motor control on the whole with that hand isn’t what it once was. It’s easier for me to reach “down” on the keyboard (lower keys) than it is to reach “up” (the number keys).
What that means is that I can kinda press number 1 on the keyboard. Number 2 is pretty well impossible. Number 3 is hit or miss. Number 4 is OK. 5 and beyond just don’t exist for me.
Gee, where do your abilities start out being bound in the standard UI?
And where do your abilities end up when your action bar gets possessed?
(Yes, I could change this but there is no fit-all bind pattern for me to use for vehicle/possess situations).
I think a lot of my initial issues with playing the game on my first poor, abused warrior can be derived from the simple fact that I just could not effectively push the buttons that I wanted to push when I wanted to push them.
When we rerolled onto the Horde side, my husband came across a post for a keybinding set for rogues that is heavily dependent on the mouse wheel and modifier keys. I believe it was called the “Mouse of Doom” or something like that. He gave it a go early on in the development of his character.
I, on the other hand, doggedly stood by standard keybinds with my mage. By the time we reached Stranglethorn, I had run out of places to put abilities and was rapidly turning into a frustrated clicker because my damn hand would not do what I wanted it to do.
So I decided to try this Mouse of Doom approach.
PvP server. Complete overhaul of keybinds. High population server. Playing in prime time.
I died A LOT in STV.
But I did finally get the hang of it and now can’t imagine playing any other way.
When I rolled my new warrior, I immediately went with the MoD.
On my priest… offensive capabilities were on the mouse wheel while we were questing, but recently I realized that I had virtually no mobility and was still hitting 1-4 wrong while healing.
I’m now a full-blown healbot. Heals are on the wheel and I have no idea what I did with my damage spells. Please don’t ask me to DPS.
So what does the set up look like for the Mouse Wheel of Doom for my casters? (The priest pieces aren’t fully in place yet and are subject to much change, especially since I know I have more goodies to train later on. I know I forgot a few of them already since I don’t know the names of my spells very well yet.)
My home keys are QWE with my pinky floating in the space where my CAPS LOCK key was, ready to hit TAB. (CAPS and the Windows key got pulled off).
I have no keyboard turning capability unless I want to find the arrow keys.
My mouse has an additional 2 buttons on the thumb side.
One serves as my push-to-talk button for vent. It’s located in such a way that I can keep it depressed indefinitely and it does not interfere with my play (or my venomous diatribes in vent regarding the intelligence and breeding of paladins that don’t train Blessing of Wisdom).
The other side-mouse button is my mount button. If I hold SHIFT while clicking it, it turns on auto-run.
The tilt of my mouse wheel also allows me to strafe.
~ = Set Focus. I have to reach a little to hit it, but I don’t hit it by accident.
1 = Trinkets. Currently my Talisman of Resurgence and Arcane Power. (Icy Veins is on its own button so I can keep it separate for Evocations in some fights.)
4 = Current important button. This could be a quest item that I need to click repeatedly or a macro needed for an encounter (Frost Spheres on Anub). Or even a poor-man’s version of hunter tracking (a /target macro to find the jerk that ganked your guildmate).
The rest of the number spaces have abilities, but I click them all.
5 = Equip lance.
6 = Equip main hand weapon instead of lance.
7 = Oh shit, I’m falling. Slow Fall or Levitate.
8 = Wand.
9 = Bandage.
0 = Health potion.
– = Mana potion.
= = Healthstone.
R = Main nuke. Arcane Blast on my mage, Greater Heal on the priest. Generally, something with a long cast time.
T = Interrupts. Counterspell for the mage.
Y = Achievements. Default.
U = Reputation. Default.
I = LFG. Default. Or is it now LFD? Whatever the Looking for More People to spend a miserable time with thing is called now.
O = Social. Default.
P = Spellbook. Default.
A = Purges/Removals. On the mage this is Remove Curse, priest it’s Remove Disease. I think my pally has Cleanse here.
S = Moving backwards. Horrible habit, I know, but I refuse to remove this bind. I need it when I’m trying to get into a building and keep hitting the door frame.
D = More purges or CC. Mage has Polymorph here (hold SHIFT+D and it’s a Presence of Mind + Polymorph). Priest has Dispel Magic.
F = Spellsteal. I think I had assist here at one point, it’s the default. But after I got X-Perl it was much easier to just click the damn frame the tank was targeting.
G = AoE cast sequence macro. I’m still toying with this one, it feels clunky. The idea is that the first press gets me Flamestrike (SHIFT + G makes it a PoM Flamestrike) and the second press gets me Blizzard.
H = Honor. Default.
K = Skills. Default.
L = Quest log. Default.
‘ = Fishing. Yeah, I know, a little weird. SHIFT + ‘ (so really “) is Disenchanting or Prospecting depending on the character.
B = Bags. Default. I think it only opens 1 and SHIFT + B opens all. Not sure.
N = Talents. Default.
ALT + C = Character pane.
ALT + F = Set to follow.
ALT + R = Respond to last whisper.
SHIFT + Z = Frostbolt.
CTRL + Z = Fireball.
CTRL + SHIFT + Z = Frostfire Bolt.
(I’m fairly well fucked if I’m reaching deep enough into the spell book to be pulling out those last three spells.)
That’s a lot of crap on the keyboard, what’s left for the mouse?
Mouse wheel click (MWC) = Blink. On my priest it’s wand.
MW Up (MWU) = Ice Lance. Renew.
MW Down (MWD) = Fire Blast. Flash Heal.
SHIFT + MWU = Frost Nova. Power Word: Shield.
SHIFT + MWD = Arcane Explosion. Holy Nova.
(For the mage, both are AoE abilities centered around me. On the priest, it just felt like a good place to have PW:S and HN matches AE well.)
CTRL + MWU = Arcane Barrage.
CTRL + MWD = Arcane Missiles.
ALT + MWU = Cone of Cold.
ALT + MWD = Scorch.
SHIFT + ALT + MWU = Flame Strike. Binding Heal.
SHIFT + ALT + MWD = Blizzard.
(For the mage, both are AoE abilities that require use of a targeting circle. On the priest, I can’t quite get Binding Heal to work on a mouseover so I’ve put it with a keybind that I *know* takes targeting on my part.)
SHIFT + CTRL + MWU = Zoom in camera.
SHIFT + CTRL + MWD = Zoom out camera.
CTRL + ALT + MWU = Currently empty, but I’m thinking Mirror Image and Shadowfiend can go here. Especially since I’ll actually have to start using the damn Images this patch.
CTRL + ALT + MWD = Mana Shield.
CTRL + ALT + MWC = Evocate
So on my mage, my fingers rest comfortably on QWE while waiting.
As soon as I get the go-ahead to open it up, my pointer finger moves to R and I start chain casting Arcane Blast. As soon as it’s time to clear the stack, my pinky drops to CTRL and I go up or down on the mouse wheel depending on wanting Arcane Barrage (rarely) or Arcane Missile (99% of the time).
I can move using the keyboard while casting any of my damage instants. Utility instants (Spellsteal, Counterspell), I can move with the mouse. Between the mouse and keyboard I can even move while aiming Blizzard and Flame Strikes.
All buffs are clicks.
Fire and Frost Wards are clicks. As are Mana Gems and Arcane Torrent.
Ice Block and Invisibility are clicks, but I have it set for right-click to remove the aura.
So that’s everything I can remember about my keybinds. It’s a little different for my melee characters and they’re still young enough to not have much to push anyway.
Anyone else do something crazy like this?
If I put out a challenge for someone to redo their binds like this for a raid would anyone take me up on it? I dare you…