Warcraft III custom hotkeys are a dream!

Discussion in 'Games' started by P-Worm, Jul 29, 2004.

  1. P-Worm macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #1
    I just set up my custom hotkeys for Night Elf in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, and I have to say, my speed with the game has increased ten fold. Has anyone else out there done this? I have it set up basically as follows:

    Q - Move
    A - Attack
    S - Stop
    W - Hide
    D,F,G - Abilities corresponding to where they are placed. Example, Druid of the Claw: Spells go from left to right as Roar, Rejuvination, And Bear form. So this case would have D - Roar, F -Rejuvination, G - Bear form.
    Q,W,E (when a building is selected) - Trains the corresponding unit from left to right. Example: In the ancient of war, the units from left to right are Archer, Huntress, and Glaive Thrower. So Q - Archer, W - Huntress, and E - Glaive Thrower. I use these because I can now put all of my building into the '4' hot-key and set up my fingers so I can 'tab' through the building with my pinky and select uints with my other fingers.

    Although I haven't done so yet, researches will follow the layout of the left side of the keyboard in grid form. Because the grid of selectable abilites is 4x3, I can use Q-V in the keyboard's 4x3 grid (hope that makes sense).

    My unit hotkeys are as follows:
    Heros: F1-F3 (Normal)
    Melee: 1
    Range: 2
    Magic and air: 3

    So there's my layout. I want to know if anyone else has experimented with this and what you found to be best for you.

    P-Worm
     
  2. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #2
    why would you use custom hotkeys? the pre-mapped hotkeys are FAR MORE INTUITIVE than say....W for Hide...WTF ARE YOU SMOKING???seems like a lot of work for nothing and you'll just confuse yourself, not to mention be unable to use hotkeys on anyone elses game of warcraft 3...a nice idea, but a waste of time on blizzards part. use the games hotkeys, they actually stand for something (i.e. H for Hide).
     
  3. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #3
    You aren't thinking along the same lines that I am. Take a look at your keyboard. Take a nice look. Think about keys that you use. Probably Attack, Move, and Hide frequently. You might also make some control groups (numbers at the top). Now those three hotkeys, A for Attack, M for Move, and I (not H) for Hide. Those keys really couldn't be farther from each other.

    Now take a look at my custom hotkeys. EVERY key is in the upper left hand area of the keyboard. I don't have to ever look down to see where a hotkey is. Does it make sense why Q stands for move? No, but it's a lot easier. That and I changed it so that instead of it sayin Move (with the 'M' in white) in the game, it now says Q - Move.

    As far as not being able to use your hotkeys elsewhere or letting others use the regular hotkeys on mine, that's the beauty of how Blizzard set this up. Instead of customizing the hotkeys in the game, you make a separate text file in your Warcraft III folder defining YOUR hotkeys. So if you want to use your hotkeys on another computer, you just have you transfer the text file over (you could even do this by email if you wanted to).

    And getting to the defaults is even easier. In Game Options, there is an option for "Using Custom Hotkeys." To revert, just uncheck it.

    Anyway, it's pretty obvious that you aren't that big of a player if you didn't recognize why custom hotkeys would be so nice (and that's not bad either, you might be the guy I'm eating rockets from on UT ;)), but while the keys that Blizzard set up may be easy to understand, they are in no way practical.

    P-Worm
     
  4. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #4
    actually i play warcraft 3 quite a bit. i have all of the hot keys memorized, for every army, thus i'd have to UNLEARN them to use custom hot keys. if it works for you, that's cool, but it seems REALLY unintuitive to me. I know why you used those keys, they are all in the upper left, however I don't have to look at my keyboard to know what key I'm pressing, so having them all next to each other doesn't help me. To be honest, the only hot key i use excessively is A (Attack) since Move is just a right click on the ground (and the implication of Moves versus Attacking a blank spot on the ground in the game, where Move ignores enemies while Attack engages if you are confronted). I know Blizzard uses a custom file to map the keys too, and you COULD carry it around with you, but I personally don't find that very convenient (although leaving it in your inbox as you suggested would make that pretty simple).

    basically, custom hotkeys seem like a lot of work to me since i already know the default ones, although i can definitely see their merits for players such as yourself or people who want to develop their own system. i'm curious though you said you had mapped the 1,2,3 to unit types, pressing that key does it select all units of that type you have, or just the ones you specified (i.e. 1 is footmen, you create new footmen afterwards, does it add the additional footmen to the group? i know using the command-1 or whatever method does not). if it does, i may have to do that :D.

    so did u have to reprogram the hotkeys for the barracks, AoW, etc to be "D = 1st Unit, C=2nd unit" etc or "D=Archer, C=Huntress" etc? i guess custom hotkeys would just confuse the **** out of me, as I'd be hitting H for my huntresses and nothing would be happening :(, or B for build and my wisp would just look at me. O and I play W3 pretty often, I'm a lvl 19 on West and 17 on East (though i haven't played east in over a month so I probably have XP decay).

    Manwe.Sullimo if you ever want to 1v1.

    o and i forgot the H is used by Huntress's instead of Hide, but hey i just woke up so sue me :D, plus i play random so...i have excuses :p.
     
  5. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #5
    You are definately right about the unlearning part, but it isn't nearly as bad as you think. I've been playing some custom games to try it out and I walked all over the computer with these keys. The thing that makes it not so bad is the fact that the system is the same for every unit, middle finger for first spell, index for next and index one key over for last. In fact, if you spent a little time with the system, it would probably do wonders for your Random game because every race would have identical hotkeys (I'm strictly a Night Elf player).

    Now I'm not saying I'm some incredible player, my solo game is pretty awful, but I'm saying that just simply making the keys more accesable has worked wonders for my game.

    And sure, I'd like to 1v1 you. I'll probably lose, but practice never hurt anyone. :D

    P-Worm
     
  6. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #6
    i have to agree 1000% with you. i remember when i first started playing, i used my mouse for everything (clicked build, then click the farm, then placed it) MAN IT TOOK FOREVER! now i can do my initial town setup in the time it would have taken me to place a farm previously. not to mention it has improved my micro-management ten fold, clicking on a priest in the midst of 100 units to cast dispel was a bit intense prior to hot keys.

    so how do you set up custom hot keys? i fear change, but i'd like to give it a try. was there an online set of instructions, or did you just dive in and figure it out? i remember when they first came out with it (1.13 or 4?) it sounded real easy to use, i just never tried it. any suggestions are appreciated.

    o and i suck at the game too, don't worry about it, if u ever want to 1v1 my aim is BrianKonar@mac.com send me a note well set something up. you should try humans, night elves are too fragile for my tastes (aside from those crazy MG's).
     
  7. smurphur macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2003
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #7
    do either of you play on a powerbook? I could only find a few system requirements online, and some posts about single player running ok. I'm wondering how they fair up in big battle.net battles that take place, lots of spell casting, etc.

    Thanks,
     
  8. Edot macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2002
    Location:
    NJ
    #8
    Ummm... Ok

    If you want to be any good at the game you must use custom hot keys. The default key layouts require far too much movement of your hands and possibly the use of two hands. Your game will improve tons if you take the time to rework the keys into two rows for your non mouse hand. I have all of my keys either QWERT or ASDFG for everything! much easier to play. Now I have to do this for the other three races as I only play NE. You can also change the key hints in the game so for Hide(which is 'i' by the way) you can replace with HiDe, and the 'D' will be yellow so you know what you changed it to in case you forget. Some things don't work out like Doar for roar but whatever. I use a logical mapping according to the layout in the button/action pane so it isn't confusing. Give it a try before you say isn't useful.
     
  9. echeck macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #9
    I whole-heartedly disagree :). I'm certainly not the best, but I do have a fairly decent solo record (above 60% win rate), and I do not use custom hot keys.

    I do use the default keys though, but have my hand arranged in such a way on the keyboard that I know exactly where the keys are and what they do. So it's basically the same thing, but I adapted to the game instead of making the game adapt to me. ;)

    P-Worm, just think, after your two-year stint in London, a new warcraft game may be out and then you'll have to re-learn everything again!
     
  10. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #10
    EXACTLY. for the person who asked if anyone plays ona powerbook, i do. I use a Rev C 12" and play on my 17" LCD at 1280x1024 in random team games of 3v3. It runs great, I don't know how to check FPS but it looks smooth to me.

    I don't understand the argument that the keys are all over the board, it's not like you need to press them in a sequence or combination...YOU JUST PRESS ONE KEY TO DO SOMETHING! i.e. hit T with your Tauren Chief to stomp.
     
  11. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #11
    Well, in the heat of battle, you want to have skills accesable and fast, especially if you have 3 heros. Take the warden for example. It's common to Shadow Strike then do Fan of Knives right after. Granted those hotkeys are d and f respectively, but you get my point. When you need to get to spells quickly (like Death Coil for a hero kill before the hero can TP) you want that key as close as possible while cycling through units.

    P-Worm
     
  12. Edot macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2002
    Location:
    NJ
    #12
    You obviously don't play NE, when Hide is 'i' your micro is terrible.
     
  13. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #13
    I don't use custom hotkeys and I'm fairly good though not the best (over 60%). When you're a touch-typist, it's easy to use any key at any time... Think about secretaries who can type 120 wpm - do you know how fast they get to each individual letter no matter where it is? (I'm not that fast a typist, but fast enough.)
     
  14. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #14
    Yes, but being able to use two hands helps a lot I'm sure.

    P-Worm
     
  15. zaphoyd macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Wisconsin/Illinois
    #15
    Post text file?

    P-Worm, could you post the text file you use? I would like to give it a try.
     
  16. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #16
    Sure. It's really big and I have only modded the Night Elf part, but you can get the jist of how to do it. I'm just going to include a small bit of it so that it isn't huge and confusing.

    Note: This post is huge and might seem like it isn't worth the work. Let me assure you that this doesn't take nearly as long as I make it look like by the size of this tutorial and custom hotkeys should improve your game immesly as it has mine.

    There should be a text file in Warcraft III folder called CustomKeysSample.txt. Open that up (I used TextEdit). Now you just need to modify it a bit.

    The original:

    Modified:

    Ok, this is how it works:

    Let's take the example of Train Glaive Thrower.

    Original:

    Modified:

    Obivously to change the actual hotkey, all you need to do is change "Hotkey=T" to "Hotkey=[Whatever you choose to be the hotkey]"

    The next part is a little tricky, but not entirely important, nor hard to understand. Take a look at the part that says Tip=. In the original, you can see that it says Train Glaive rhrower with some junk in front of rhrower. What is going on here is the letter that is farthest to the right inside the vertical lines will be placed where the r just after the line is. This tells Warcraft that the letter goes where that r is and in the game will make it so that letter is a different hotkey to tell the user what the hotkey is.

    So back to our little Glaive Thrower example, I have modified it so that in no longer will read "Train Glaive Thrower" in the game, but it now says "E - Train Glaive Thrower" indicating that E is the hotkey to train a Glaive Thrower.

    So to do that, I have moved the |cffffcc00T|r to the front, changed the T with an E, and replaced the T in thrower.

    Now it can get a little trickier such as in Hide. Let's take a look at that.

    Original:

    Modified:

    This is a little trickier because the hotkey is found within the word. In the game, it looks like Hide. Note that in the original the letter to the farthest right in the vertical lines is lower case this time instead of upper case. That is because where that 'r' is will be replaced with whatever character is in the farthest right. Making that 'i' upper case would make it appear in game as "HIde". Maybe that is what you want, but just a heads up. So againt I have taken |cffffcc00i|r moved it to the front, changed the 'i' to a 'W', replaced the 'i' in 'Hide' and put in the - to separate. Of course, the Hotkey=I was changed to Hotkey=W.

    Hope this makes sense. With this information, you should be able to mod the CustomKeysSample.txt file to the way you want it.

    You're not through yet though, just very close. You need to save this file as CustomKeys.txt NOT CustomKeysSample.txt. The game looks for a file called CustomKeys.txt in your Warcraft III folder and if it doens't find it, it won't use custom keys. This is also a safeguard that makes it so that if you want to make your keys again from scratch, you will still have that CustomKeysSample.txt to do so.

    After you have that file in your Warcraft III folder, go into Warcraft III, into Game Options I think and there is a check box that says something like "Use custom hotkeys." Turn that sucker on. After that, it should work as planned.

    Good luck, and if you need any further help (I'll be in the states until August 10th) send me an email at p-worm@p-worm.com.

    P-Worm
     
  17. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
  18. vsp macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2004
    Location:
    Chico, Ca
    #18
    Yes, I did. Think I'll try it too, thanks.

    Vince
     
  19. slyguy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #19

    Hi, firstly i got to this page just after being interested in the custom key sampletxt.file
     
  20. slyguy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #20

    Now can u change the color of the characters when online.. ?

    I just thought its a great idead that u are doing that with the keypad setup but.. u could but a game pad N 52 like mine and just add the proper charcters such as the I for hide as that idiot said i have had problems with chaging the characters such as I for hide for e.g : that when u have to reinstall the game all the characters go back to default and u have to re-do all that painful character changing when if u used a game pad u can just add the default characters and all u have to do is just memorise the places where u put the characters.
     
  21. P-Worm thread starter macrumors 68020

    P-Worm

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #21
    First of all, I can't believe that this thread got ressurrected. It's over two years old, but I guess that's okay if it helps someone out.

    Second, I'm having a really hard time reading your post. I'm going to attempt to respond...

    Third, I still stand by that these custom keys are great and will help your micro immensley. It allows you to keep your hand in one spot on the keyboard so that you don't have to dance around when the battles get intense. As has been addressed, if you need to re-install or move to another computer you can just save the text file customkey.txt. You can email it to yourself and keep it there, or carry it on a disk with you. It doesn't matter and it's not too difficult to preserve what you have learned.

    I have never used a game pad before, but I imagine that I wouldn't like it too much. Warcraft III is built for a keyboard and mouse and I can't imagine playing it any other way.

    If anyone is interested, I can send you the .txt file for the Night Elf custom keys that I use. If there are any takers, I can post the text right here in this thread.

    P-Worm
     

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