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#1 Posted by css_switchfoot (215 posts) -

I recently had a convo with some buddies about my control scheme. You'l have to know a little bit of my gaming history for it to make any sense to you...so skip to the end for the short version.

The first computer game I ever played for PC was Descent. In that game the default movement is A (forward) and Z (backward), using the numpad for sliding left/right/up/down and no mouse support for looking around. My brother and I played more hours of Descent 1 and 2 together than any other game I've played in my life (and I've played a few hours of games since then).

After thoroughly enjoying the Descent series (especially FreeSpace), I moved onto RPG's and RTS games. I dove headfirst into Baldur's Gate and loved it, but my friends weren't' really into that type of game. When Diablo 2 came out all my buddies were playing that, so I asked my Mom to buy it for me. She went to Best Buy and was put off by the M rating of the game. The Best Buy rep recommended BattleZone instead. Now to this day I have no idea who that guy was, but man am I glad she listened to him and came home with that game. Now don't get me wrong, I loved Diablo 2. But I never would have played BattleZone if not for this guy. I wasn't the kind of kid to get upset when my Mom told me no, so I installed this new game I got and enjoyed the heck out of it for a few months. Really loved the campaign in that game.

Anyway, to get back on track, BattleZone has you moving left and right and thrusting up to jump all while pivoting around to shoot stuff. The control scheme I was used to fromDescent lets you move in 3 directions at once - but it didn't use a mouse at all. So now my right hand is taken up for just aiming, and that leaves only my left hand for doing the moving. So, I somehow came up with a crazy control scheme that let me move all around the way I wanted with just my left hand - ASDF. The original BattleZone shaped my keyboard movement I still use today.

It worked for me as a kid, and I was used to it. So I took it along with me when I moved on to FPS games. I got into Rainbow Six, and that game was all about peeking around corners and taking tangos down. Man I miss peeking around corners. So I had to add buttons to peek, duck, zoom in, reload, change firing type, etc. I loved that game and moved onto Rogue Spear, which got me into the competitive scene. Competitive shooting at the time led to Counter-strike (I always leaned towards more realistic games instead of quake and unreal). You gotta be able to walk in that game while having full control still available so you can sneak up on people. Since I'm used to having all four fingers on ASDF, moving over to SHIFT to walk/run just wasn't working for me, so I put it on the right mouse button.

As games became more complicated and added things, they would interfere with me using ASDF. So I had to move those things around my movement buttons. Eventually Modern Warfare came out, and I had to cope with aim down sites being something other than my RMB. Probably why I never liked that game as a competitive shooter.

So... all that influenced my control scheme.

A - forward

F - backward

S - strafe left

D - strafe right

V - zoom/ADS

E - duck

Space - Jump/boosters

C - use/interact

RMB - walk/spring toggle

Z - reload

All my friends say its weird as hell. Its what I've used for years...I'm pretty old now at 27 and have used it for every game I've played. My brother still uses A (forward) and Z (backward) when he plays games. He's mostly moved onto consoles though, while I'm still holding down the PC.

So whats your weird control scheme? Or are you just a WASD gamer?

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#2 Posted by insouciant (852 posts) -

That control scheme is pretty weird. I'm a WASD gamer and I'm that way because that's the default scheme for Counter-Strike.

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#3 Posted by zels (212 posts) -

@css_switchfoot: That is the most insane control setup I've ever seen. WASD here.

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#4 Edited by OfficeGamer (1120 posts) -

@css_switchfoot said:

A - forward

F - backward

S - strafe left

D - strafe right

No Caption Provided
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#5 Posted by Coombs (3510 posts) -

Console - I love a good controller (read 360)

When I play on PC though I am definitely a WASD gamer

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#6 Posted by Coombs (3510 posts) -

@OfficeGamer said:

@css_switchfoot said:

A - forward

F - backward

S - strafe left

D - strafe right


Laying my fingers on that it does seem like it would feel right.....

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#7 Posted by Branthog (5777 posts) -

WASD, only because ESDF doesn't quite feel right, even though it's more useful.

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#8 Posted by Sweep (10174 posts) -

My friend plays dota without using the keyboard. He literally clicks everything with the mouse. It drives me mental, not because I dislike the idea, but because he still manages to do surprisingly well. He has a 16 win streak with Visage and that hero requires micro and everything.

It's fucking witchcraft or something, I dunno.

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#9 Posted by probablytuna (4924 posts) -

WASD for life.

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#11 Posted by Justin258 (14374 posts) -

That's fucking nuts.
The only weird thing I do is map Quicksave to something relatively close.

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#12 Posted by JEC03 (1429 posts) -


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#13 Posted by ShaggE (8398 posts) -

WASD here, but I was dragged into it kicking and screaming. I was all about the old arrow keys setup, but around 1999, it just wasn't viable anymore. I think it was Unreal that finally got me to use mouselook.

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#14 Posted by jdh5153 (1097 posts) -

Xbox controller

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#15 Posted by inkerman (1493 posts) -

WASD since Half Life 2, before that I was old school arrow keys.

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#16 Posted by Binman88 (3699 posts) -

Arrow keys. Probably started with Thief, but I've never been able to make the switch to wasd because I like being able to easily tell where my fingers are without looking (easy with the arrow keys because they're in the own little group). I've also never had a reason to change. Usually use numpad 0 for jump, rshift for sprint/walk, rctrl for crouch, return for reload (handy because, apart from jump, none require me to move fingers from the movement keys). Other stuff I put on the numpad or the clump of keys above the arrow keys (usually weapon select stuff up there).

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#17 Posted by Firepaw (3053 posts) -

You.. you're crazy! That is simply insane, but whatever works you for your man!

Personally I prefer the 360 controller, but on the PC I usually just go with the standard WASD controls.

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#18 Posted by Kerned (1185 posts) -

I think that sounds bonkers, but I invert Y and some people think that's crazy too.

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#19 Posted by ZeForgotten (10368 posts) -

Huh, I just put my fingers there and it actually didn't feel weird. 
But yeah, WASD player.

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#20 Posted by ArtisanBreads (8091 posts) -

Totaly depends. Always was, but just go back into PC and I'm using a controller for some things. Enjoying Witcher 2 again with one.

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#21 Posted by Bollard (7560 posts) -

It sounds like you're trying to use the VIM control scheme... in a game.

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#22 Posted by Icemo (715 posts) -

Your control scheme would make sense to me if you used index, middle and ring fingers for asdf and pinky for shift as a run button. Having run button as a rmb sounds insane to me. I'm using wasd because I haven't really found any better combination for me with a regular qwerty keyboard.

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#23 Posted by Christoffer (2325 posts) -

When I played Quake back in the 90s I had a pretty weird setup

LMB - Forward

RMB - Back

A - Strafe left

D - Strafe right

S - Jump

L Control - Shoot

Can't remember the other buttons but it sure was crazy. I use the standard WASD setup these days.

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#24 Posted by Ghost_Cat (2042 posts) -

WASD, but I used to have the rmb for crouch for a long time.

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#25 Posted by buft (3409 posts) -

@ArtisanBreads said:

Totaly depends. Always was, but just go back into PC and I'm using a controller for some things. Enjoying Witcher 2 again with one.

I keep meaning to go back and try that

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#26 Posted by BabyChooChoo (6563 posts) -

If I could use a controller for everything, I would. I prefer a good ol' controller infinitely more than I ever will appreciate a keyboard and mouse. I could give a fuck about precision. Give me two analog sticks and I'm good to go. Plus, I love the reactions I get when some PC dude tries to explain the glorious benefits of a KB&M and I'm literally like "I do not care."

That said, if a 360 controller is not an option. I usually just stick with the default mappings.

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#27 Posted by DetectiveSpecial (472 posts) -

Am I the only one that uses half controller / half mouse? I get the benefit the mouse has for precision and what not, but to me using WASD feels less precise than using an analog stick. I use Xmapper to put most of the critical functions on the triggers and directional pad, put WASD on the analog stick, and I'm good to go. I only do this for shooters, though.

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#28 Edited by Hungry (172 posts) -

@Sweep said:

My friend plays dota without using the keyboard. He literally clicks everything with the mouse. It drives me mental, not because I dislike the idea, but because he still manages to do surprisingly well. He has a 16 win streak with Visage and that hero requires micro and everything.

It's fucking witchcraft or something, I dunno.

I imagine he is not too terribly high up in matchmaking then? I would imagine such a huge handicap on timing would ruin any chances of that. Especially if he played a very timing-sensitive hero like Rubick. He should play Invoker or Storm Spirit sometime.

On another note, I usually use very standard hotkeys, but my friend plays Dota with SZXC as his camera controls. I find this ridiculous since you have to shift your fingers to hit abilities or use items while moving the camera. I prefer to just have really high mouse sensitivity and camera scroll speed (then again I am used to games like Quake and UT so it is all about really fast mouse speeds).

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#29 Posted by Kevin_Cogneto (1624 posts) -

Yeah, like some other people in this thread, I had a really rough transition from the arrow key days, I clung to that scheme way beyond the point of being viable. Before mouse-look existed, I'd play with movement on my right hand, and shoot/reload/etc on my left hand, usually mapped to space and left shift. But then mouse look came in, and I had to switch to my left hand for movement, and it was a disaster for years and years. Also there was the fact that on most keyboards, the W key is slightly offset to the left of the S key, which threw me off for years. I'd often hit the E key by mistake. There were no accidents like that when I was using the arrow keys.

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#30 Posted by SexyToad (2939 posts) -

I never caught onto the WASD controls. I always use a controller with my PC games.

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#31 Posted by fox01313 (5206 posts) -

Used to WASD but was talking to a friend of mine who was mostly playing Nintendo consoles (in the last few years gotten more into the PS3/360 & PC games), it was quite odd talking to him & finding that he can't quite figure out the WASD control scheme plus a bulk of his PC games on steam are using it that he bought at the steam sale yet not played them yet.

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#32 Posted by Nev (688 posts) -

I used the arrow keys for a few years when I began PC gaming with WoW back in 2004, and switched to WASD probably about 2007 or 2008, still playing WoW. I use WASD still, but will use a 360 controller anytime it's an option.

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#33 Posted by Dark (484 posts) -

ESDF here

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#34 Posted by TobbRobb (6093 posts) -

99% of the time I be WASDing. But I'm actually pretty adaptable, ESDF is alright, I used IJKL at some point, arrow keys are cool sometimes... I even like using the numpad for simpler games so I can map all the crap to one hand, can rest my chin on the other one that way. ^^

Everything is on a game to game basis. Hell, considering the games I play now, QWER is more accurate than WASD.

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#35 Posted by SpartanHoplite (429 posts) -

G13 :)

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#36 Posted by endofworld (9 posts) -

ESDF for life. I actually like remapping all the keys before I even start playing a game because it helps me learn all the controls. For shooters ala Unreal Tournament with tons of guns to swap I got in the habbit of mapping most of the guns to my mouse buttons and whats left around my left hand.

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#37 Posted by ImmortalSaiyan (4748 posts) -

I played a lot of wow back in the day and used WASD.

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#38 Posted by cloudymusic (1881 posts) -

I've been WASD for years now, but back in the 90's (when everyone was just first experiencing mouselook-based FPSes), I used something like:

RMB: Walk forward

< and > : Strafe left/right

/ : Walk backwards

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#39 Posted by Jams (3043 posts) -

I used to use the arrow keys because a lot of games were using it at the time. Once I started playing HL and CS, I used the arrow keys for a while but had to change that. I would always have to uninstall/reinstall games, so I got sick of having to change the default layouts. So I made a vow to just learn to use whatever control scheme that's default.

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#40 Posted by TooWalrus (13391 posts) -

WASD for first person shooters, controllers for everything else.

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#41 Posted by Ravenlight (8057 posts) -

I can play Nethack using HJKL and I can navigate in a vi editor.

But I don't like to.

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#42 Posted by Cretaceous_Bob (552 posts) -

I'm WASD because it works fine and I'd really rather not rebind every key on every PC game I play.

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#43 Posted by Fredchuckdave (10221 posts) -

ESDF is considerably better for games with a lot of keybinds; but the time it would take me to adjust probably wouldn't be worth it. I use arrow keys in emulators and (actual) roguelikes.

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#44 Posted by FirePrince (1793 posts) -

I remember how Tribes 2 defaulted to ESDF in order to move.

That's back when PC games were whatever the fuck they wanted to be.

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#45 Posted by Guided_By_Tigers (8020 posts) -

@css_switchfoot said:

A - forward

F - backward

S - strafe left

D - strafe right

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#46 Edited by rflx (600 posts) -

I'm a lefty, so I use arrow keys + whatever is surrounding them.. Right Ctrl for jump, right shift for run, keypad 0 for use item, etc. 
Every once in a while I map movement to the numpad, so WASD becomes 8456.

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#47 Posted by TheHT (14317 posts) -

WASD now, used to be the arrow keys for everything.

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#48 Edited by phrosnite (3519 posts) -

This is the best for lefties.


; for jump

SPACE - dodge or block

UOPY - weapons and shit

H - Use

/ - crouch

M - Map

N - Reload

B - Inventory

',.790- for other uses

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#49 Posted by VipeR (196 posts) -

Now you made me install BattleZone again, and I thank you for that!

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#50 Posted by m16mojo2 (423 posts) -

I have to bind RMB for walk/forward, due to a disability. My left hand is basically a constant semi-fist, so I rebind LftCtrl for aim / secondary action. I use my knuckles for the ASD keys but, not often.

Depends on the game too. If it's 3rd person, I just use a controller. Mouse, to aim and shoot.