WoW Hardcore Casual's (MoP 5.4) - Guide to Perfect Key Bindings

Published: 2014-05-19, by WoWHardCas-Team - Kel'Thuzad






How do I setup my key bindings for max efficiency?

This is probably the #1 question that gets asked on WoW related gaming forums. I have seen it and answered it so many times that I decided this answer needs to be immortalized so players everywhere can find this information with ease.

The most important two things to keep in mind when deciding key bindings are: "how far apart are these key combinations?, and "how far are they from the movement keys?"

Meaning we want our keys close to our movement keys and close to one another. For this reason there are some major changes needed to get from the default settings to ideal settings, and I'm going to take you through that process right now.


Step 1: Get the addon: "Profiles: Keyboard Binds"

This addon will help you save time setting up key bindings on new characters, and it more importantly, it will help you recover your key bindings if they disappear for some reason (this happens more often than you might think). Use the following commands to save and load key binds:

/kps save mybinds
/kps load mybinds

Also, this gives you a convenient way to give your friends your key bindings if you want to in the future, and you can copy these key bindings over to a new character by simply overriding that characters "ProfilesKeyboardbinds.lua" file found in his/her unique folder. Remember to replace their name with the character's name you wish to use these bindings for. Then just log into that character and type "/kps load mybinds" and you'll be ready to go!


Step 2: What keys do I bind?

I'm writing this under the assumption that you are playing a character that needs lots and lots of bindings!



Movement keys: W, E, R

No character in WoW needs any movement keys beyond these three! Strafe left, move forward, and strafe right are the only three keys you will ever need for movement. Unbind table turning and back pedalling keys, these keys will just get you killed someday and are completely useless! For melee classes, it is even possible to play with no movement keys at all, by only using your mouse for movement.

Action Bar 1: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Q, A, Z, S, D, F

These keys are reserved for your core abilities that you will use frequently in battle. I personally use 1-6 for attack abilities, Q, A, Z for defensive abilities, S, D, F for movement abilities (dash, disengage, dark flight, etc.).

Action Bar 2: X, C, V, T, G, B, Y, H, N, Shift-A, Shift-Z, Shift-X

These will also be mostly core abilities that are used frequently in battle. I use these for CC, tranquilizing shot, concussion shot, etc.

The first to action bars and movement keys can be seen in the image above. Notice how having movement keys shifted to the right and removing useless movement keys has opened up a lot of room for more key bindings in vital locations!

Action Bar 3: Shift-Q, Shift-S, Shift-C, Ctrl-A, Ctrl-Z, Ctrl-X, Alt-A, Alt-Z, Alt-X, Mouse1, Mouse2, Mouse 3

Now we are getting to keys with less accessibility, you will begin using these keys for ancillary abilities that will be used frequently, but not always in the heat of battle. Shift-Q is what I use to summon my mount for example. Alt-A, Alt-X, and Alt-Z I often use for buffs.

Action Bar 4: Num3, Num4, Num5, Num6, Num7, Num8, Num9, Num(-), Num(*), Num(-)

You maybe wonder why you'd want numpad keys bound at all, but the answer is simple: extra mouse buttons. I personally use a naga hex mouse with 6 extra buttons on the side, but there are mouses with even more buttons, and my opinion on mouse buttons is: the more the merrier! I personally use my mouse buttons for mouse over macros to set focus, cast fear / polymorph / cyclone, etc. I also use them for things less important like goblin glider, rocket boosters, the tiller plow, etc. Some people like to remap some of these keys to shift / ctrl / alt modifiers to grant easier access to shift modifier keys, and it sounds like a good idea to me, but personally have never tried this.

Action Bar 5: F1, F2, F3, F4, F5, F6, F7, F8, F9, F10, F11, F12

I usually map my burst keys to F1-F6, and use F7-F12 for more ancillary abilities like: profession windows, disenchanting macros, prospecting macros, tame beast and other rarely used abilities.


Step 3: Keys your should unbind

There are a few keys you should DEFINITELY unbind:

Shift-1, Shift-2, Shift-3, Shift-4, Shift-5, Shift-6, Shift-MouseScrollUp, Shift-MouseScrollDown - the default behavoir for these keys is to change your action bar to a different page, but more often than not players end up pressing these by accident and end up wiping or losing their match because of it. Get rid of it because it's completely unnecessary!


Step 3: Ok now what?

That's it! Now just play the game! I'll see you in Azeroth after I finish killing these 5,000,000 boars in the woods!

Author: WoWHardCas-Team - Kel'Thuzad
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