December 18, 2012

Putting Hotkeys in the Hotseat

I apologize for my calligraphy, I've had no lessons.
It's a nice day for sailing, and you are going at a nice pace to Jonah Town. You last docked in Monquista, and you're heading back to turn in a sidequest in Skull Island. You can practically smell the reek of the whale and the fish surrounding it, but you're determined to get through the clouds, and -

Drat! You've pressed the "end" key on accident! Back to Monquista with you!

Before I start, I'm going to ask this out loud: Do you think you know where I'm going? The whole "The end key hotkey really needs to go, I hate it, blah blah blah...."?

You have a very good point, and something like that example phrase will be eventually expressed, among other things. How about we start with the topic of hotkeys? Hotkeys are, when I refer to those used in Wizard101 and Pirate101, special commands that pull up certain windows or do certain things by pressing keys on your keyboard. The W, A, S, D and arrow keys are one example of that, moving you around. In Pirate101, the number keys 1-4 trigger ship attacks, where in both games, the keyboard operation "ctrl+G" removes the screen clutter and helps with cleaner screenshots. Of course, there are the extremely helpful ones like those, and then the others that make me shrug or shake my head. Let's take a look!

B, C, Q, U, M (Backpack, Character, Quests, Companions, Map)

These four hotkeys are extremely crucial to the game. For one, it's a lot easier to access your stats without clicking around for an hour. Plus, I've only found that one way (through the shortcut) to look at your quests effectively. Though I wonder why KI used U for companions, it's alright as long as one remembers. In fact, that's all there is to these hotkeys - memorization! Once you memorize a hotkey, you can just use it. An example of this is learning to walk around during orientation, or learning on your own to use the spacebar to jump and skip dialogue. I truly love these five.

"Enter", R and ESC

For all you wizards and former wizards out there, you remember what these do - "Enter" will trigger a chat box and the text cursor, and ESC would open options. In Pirate101, it's slightly different. "Enter" will trigger the chat box, but you must press it AGAIN to start typing in the chat. However, you could press R to reply to people around you, so long as you aren't messaging a friend, nor have they messaged you. The Excape key (ESC) will not show you your settings (you must get to them by clicking on the drop-down bar), but will prompt you to return to character selection. Interesting, right? I still press ESC when I want to change my volume or realm, but I'll get used to the new system eventually. I wish that KI could keep things the same with that.

End

Where, oh, where, do I start with this? In P101, the End key has been implemented into game since the PvP update. However, I'm starting to like it less and less. As stated in the above intro, the End key will teleport you back to your last bound life fountain, and if you haven't docked since, you will be in a little bit of trouble. Also, the End key is wedged right between the up and right arrow keys on my keyboard, making things very frustrating when trying to walk around or sail.My resolution for this would be to disable this key, or have the option to disable it.

In fact, having the option to disable certain hotkeys wouldn't be a bad idea at all. Even if you could only disable one at a time, it would save a lot of time for the pirates, and we'd be very grateful is we didn't get "poofed" back to Monquista again and again. To be honest, that happened to be between Junction and Bison Village several times. Because we can't move our keyboard keys, and because using WASD (for us righties) is tough, and also because the use of a mouse for running is faulty, being able to disable keys would decrease frustration in many of us.

What do you think? What hotkeys get on your nerves? Alternatively, which hotkeys do you like, or do you think should be added! If I like a response, I'll make a followup post centering around it/them!

Keep Traveling! (And be safe, it's starting to snow here.)

Destiny

P.S. ANOTHER part of ASW is out!!

1 comment:

  1. I don't even put my hands near that key anymore!I have gone strictly after I messed up with that on test realm I have started to use the WASD keys.Cool keyboard picture by the way, I really want that now just falling asleep to the rainbow lights of a keyboard xD.

    ReplyDelete

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