Keybindings, Movement, and Frustration

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I would like to start off by saying that I am not a new player. I've been playing since about October of 2006, shortly before Burning Crusade was released. That being said, I have a few questions that I felt were sort of related so I decided to make just this one thread. I'll try to make this as neat as possible.


This is where my frustration started. I normally look around/turn with my mouse, but I still use WASD for strafing and forward movement (unless I'm autorunning). This is fine, BUT, I am a keybinder and I would love to have WASD (and the surrounding keys that are awkward to use when those are used for movement) available for keybinds. That being said, there are several problems I run into when trying to transition to purely mouse-controlled movement:

  • What do I use to initiate forward movement (when autorunning doesn't make sense)?
  • How do I make small adjustments to my positioning without the ability to strafe?
  • Is this even efficient for a DPS/tank class? Or anyone?


Keybinding solutions other than opening up WASD and the surrounding keys would be helpful as well, but I don't want this thread turning into another "What are your keybinds?" thread. I would appreciate any answers to my listed questions and if you have unusual keybinds that you think may be helpful to me, I would definitely consider them. I will list the keybinds I use personally for reference:

  • Numbers 1-6, R, F, T, G, C and V for commonly used or clutch abilities
  • Shift modifiers of the above for lesser used abilities and those I didn't have room for with the first set of keybinds
  • Alt-modifiers of the above for the least used abilities or those with decently long cooldowns (i.e. Shouts on my Warrior or raid/dps cooldowns)

It should be noted that I do NOT use the Alt key; I have this mouse: and I have the button on the side programmed to be the Alt key through the mouse's software.

Thank you for any and all suggestions.
What do I use to initiate forward movement (when autorunning doesn't make sense)?
How do I make small adjustments to my positioning without the ability to strafe?
Is this even efficient for a DPS/tank class? Or anyone?

I use my mouse (it has a lot of buttons) I use the default left and right button together to move the page back button for strafe left and the page forward button for strafe right.

It works fine on all of my characters though I still do have wqe set up still as they are and use those on occasion as well.

For the rest I suggest this as a here are some ways to keybind
As you have logically deduced, strafing is vital to good positioning and there's no decent way to put it anywhere other than the keyboard. You can move forward by holding down both mouse buttons, but any other ideas for putting sideways movement on the mouse are incredibly awkward.

My personal recommendation, since you're willing to make wholesale rearrangements of the keybinds, is to move the movement keys to ESDF. This effectively opens up an additional column of keys for ability binds, as well as making your hand position more natural. Warning: this will make you start screwing up at other games where the movement keys are locked to WASD and can't be rebound! I tend to put rotational abilities on numbers and Shift-numbers, defensive cooldowns on QAZX, offensive cooldowns on TGBV, and bind ` (the key to the left of 1 on the number row) to "Extra Action Button 1"
What I do (works for me and i generally do pretty well) is i keybind all but WAD, leaving it so i can move forward and strafe but I just cant move backwards. Hope this helps!
Consider using a joystick. Once I tried it, I never wanted to go back to using a keyboard. You just need a keyboard emulator for your joystick and a little time to figure out how to set it up, and it's so much easier and more intuitive.
What I wish would work was for the middle mouse button "tilt" to work as a keybind to strafe.

Maybe I'll install the mouse software (Actiontec G500) and see if I can make that work.

It's never killed me to strafe with Q E, even for the years I was tanking.
The only "interesting thing" that I do with keybinding is that I have bound the Z key to autorun, and I only rarely use the W key, although that is still set to move forward as it was by default. I use it to move forward very short distances (positioning) when I'm doing things with my mouse (such as healing - or target selecting while tanking), but almost always use the Z key for forward movement of anything more than "a few feet". I use the q and e key to strafe - I do believe that I may have switched the functionality of q/e and a/d very early on but don't recall for sure.

The problem with relying on both mouse buttons to move is that you have to stop moving to cast spells when using mouseovers - and there's a not insignificant amount of other stuff I tend to do while moving that I need the mouse to select options while doing.

I can't see purely mouse based movement as being effective for a tank, unless someone has come up with something creative and "outside the box". In part that's because you not only need to move, but you want to always move in such a way as to minimize exposing your back to the mobs, but it's also because in some instances you need to be very very precise in how you position your target, and I just can't see you doing that other than via strafing.

I use a gamepad, but it is laid out much like the left side of the keyboard. I still use the WASD keys for movement. When I press A and D, my character turns, but if I hold the "magic" button (Right Mouse) I strafe instead.

After that, each button around WASD is mapped. Thankfully, using the gamepad, I can bind those buttons to `-=. If you're going to use the keyboard, it means ditching the keybinds for those buttons, but who needs Z anyway?

Anyway, it's possible to map buttons to the entire left side of the board. But, I would highly recommend the Belkin n52te. It lets me use the default button bindings (1 through 0), but map them to locations on a half-keyboard.

Beklin doesn't make them anymore, but it appears they were licensing it from Razor anyway.

What do I use to initiate forward movement (when autorunning doesn't make sense)?

W or the up arrow.

How do I make small adjustments to my positioning without the ability to strafe?

If you turn the camera with the left mouse button, it free-looks without turning your character. But, if you hold the right mouse button, your character turns with the screen and is locked to strafing left-and-right instead of spinning. Give it a try.

Play with the RMB and camera control. You'll be glad you did. Here's the trick for turning 180*: hold right mouse button, turn the camera, backpedal slightly. Your toon will be facing the opposite direction with almost no wait-time.

(You may need to change some options in the controls window first.)

Is this even efficient for a DPS/tank class? Or anyone?

Absolutely. I play all roles, though I use HealBot on my priest. I also tanked before I began binding (I was a click-tank in NR heroics, booyah!). However, tanking is so much better now with the gamepad and using the RMB camera tricks.

Edit: OH! I forgot to mention: holding both right and left mouse buttons will cause your character to run forward. It's very handy.

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