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    View Poll Results: Where are your fingers placed while gaming in a 3D world?

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    • Middle (middle finger on W/S)

      16 80.00%
    • Ring (ring finger on W/S)

      4 20.00%
    • I use the arrow keys!

      3 15.00%
    • I use the number pad!

      3 15.00%
    • Some other keyboard configuration.

      2 10.00%
    • I don't play this type of PC game.

      1 5.00%
    • [email protected]#$ keyboards, I hook up my console controller!

      2 10.00%
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    Thread: PC Gamers - finger position?

    1. #1
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      PC Gamers - finger position?

      (Please quickly answer the poll even if this is TL;DR)
      This thread may be a little lame but I've noticed a lack of threads lately, and this idea may be better than nothing.

      I realized yesterday when I encountered this image on facebook....



      .... and asking around a bit, that I've been using different fingers than most people for years without knowing. Since I learned to type very quickly before I started playing these types of games, I put my fingers on the same keys as I do while typing because anything else feels awkward. My pinky is on A, my ring finger is on W/S and my middle finger is on D. I'll call the two methods the Ring and Middle methods to describe whether the ring or middle finger is on W/S, respectively.

      So now I'm worried that I've been doing it wrong the whole time, and that people who use the Middle method have an advantage. Today I tried doing it the common way, but I was so unused to it it felt strange and became too frustrating to continue after only a couple minutes, even though I could tell it was putting less stress on my fingers.

      There are advantages to both methods. The Middle method may be better because it uses stronger fingers, so the ring method may be a little more awkward and make it difficult to coordinate. If that is true though, I haven't noticed it because I'm so used to it. Furthermore, with the Ring method it is more difficult to hold CTRL which is often crouch, requiring a flexible finger. However, the Ring method has a significant advantage. My pointer finger is always free to hit whatever extra buttons (R to reload, etc) quickly while I'm moving, but a Middle method user would have to move their pointer finger from the D key to hit anything else. I often play L4D2 with a bunch of drunk people who are always talking and press 'C' to talk commonly. When I press C, I don't have to take any fingers off of the movement keys. I've realized for the first time that they do, and some of them talk so often it might actually impair their game play.

      Anyway, which method do you use? Which do you think is better and why?
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    2. #2
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      It depends on the game but I voted for middle w/s, but it changes. I PVP'd a lot in WOW, and walking backwards was a waste of time. instead of the usual aswd format, I went to a asd method. q= left strafe w= forward and e= right strafe. I set the mouse to high, and was able to spin in any direction i needed to every easily without having to back up. This also gave me extra room to use asd for extra spells that would normally be in the 798 spots (yes, I know about shift+123 for extra lists, but this was in addition). In just about every other game, I used the middle finger ws method, but I'm pretty sure there isn't another PC game I've put more hours into.


      As for method...I really like my alternative method because in most games, running backwards characters run at a fraction of their speed. Also, my extra buttons evenly accessible reaching the number keys are a lot easier, and on top of that asd can be used for other buttons. In the classic position you only have xc (because shift is always used for something else, and I can still press that with my pinky.)

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      Arrow keys here, with left hand, right ctrl for crouch, right shift for jump, etc. Yes i often find my hands crossed as result in non-mouse games(especially when playing shmups and using standard ZXC with right hand), but strangely enough, i don't find it uncomfortable in any way, in fact i play much worse with 'standard' WASD configuration, i guess i am unique like that, haha.
      I think there's no 'wrongs', it really depends on personal preference and what one finds more comfortable and effective.
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    4. #4
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      I use the standard WASD grip, with my pinky on CTRL/shift and thumb on space. In WoW I use ERTF for movement, simply because it gives me access to more buttons with all of my fingers.


      For my mouse, I have my index finger on the left mouse button, middle finger on the wheel, ring finger on the right mouse buttons, thumb on side buttons and pinky just securing grip on the right side. This is, as far as I know, a quite unusual grip. Most people seem to switch between the wheel and either left or right button, rather than constantly having fingers rested on all three. I use this grip because I like to scroll my action bars in world of warcraft. It also speeds up browsing, and generally in RTS games, the middle mouse button provides a very efficient way of panning around the camera, instead of moving the cursor to the sides of the screen.
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    5. #5
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      My ring finger can always pick up the slack on movement key pressing even when pressing multiple keys (such as w/d or w/a etc.) if I need to reload or hit q for like the flashlight or something, or c,x, z, f, g, or t for like prone, crouch, grenade, or melee anything. It just happens naturally. I use the regular/middle method.
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    6. #6
      Xei
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      How on Earth do you hold Ctrl or Shift whilst moving?
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      An idea occurred to me not long ago, I've yet to give it a try but it seems intriguing. Instead of WASD, shift it over to ESDF, that way there are more keys available as hotkeys right next to your left hand. Anyone else think of this? Seems like a good idea.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Marvo View Post
      I use the standard WASD grip, with my pinky on CTRL/shift and thumb on space. In WoW I use ERTF for movement, simply because it gives me access to more buttons with all of my fingers.


      For my mouse, I have my index finger on the left mouse button, middle finger on the wheel, ring finger on the right mouse buttons, thumb on side buttons and pinky just securing grip on the right side. This is, as far as I know, a quite unusual grip. Most people seem to switch between the wheel and either left or right button, rather than constantly having fingers rested on all three. I use this grip because I like to scroll my action bars in world of warcraft. It also speeds up browsing, and generally in RTS games, the middle mouse button provides a very efficient way of panning around the camera, instead of moving the cursor to the sides of the screen.
      Digging that dragons claw mouse grip of yours.

    9. #9
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      I use wasd because it's easy to use when playing games like skyrim where you use the tab and alt buttons. It's just more comfortable having my pinky able to easily reach the tab, caps, shit and ctrl button. I also do a weird thing where I jump with two fingers if necessary. For instance when I want to hit R while strafing to the right, my index fingers jumps to the R and my middle finger automatically jumps to the D key.
      I don't think it really matters what keys you use if you can re-assign them.
      I once linked my synth up to the computer and ran the midi signal through a midi to key converter so I could play control my skyrim character on my synth, and after like 10 mins I could play without any hassle. You can adapt to anything as long as it's comfortable.

    10. #10
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      PC? Pfffffffffffft no. I'm a dirty console peasant.
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    11. #11
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      I have my mic button on TF2 set to a side mouse button. It's also possible to hit C with your thumb so that wouldn't necessarily be much of a problem.

      Quote Originally Posted by Supernova View Post
      An idea occurred to me not long ago, I've yet to give it a try but it seems intriguing. Instead of WASD, shift it over to ESDF, that way there are more keys available as hotkeys right next to your left hand. Anyone else think of this? Seems like a good idea.
      I've heard of that before. Seems like it would be an easy adjustment to make but personally I've never found the need to try it.

      Quote Originally Posted by TimeDragon97 View Post
      PC? Pfffffffffffft no. I'm a dirty console peasant.













      PS

      Apparently some people map forward to their right mouse button.

      What the actual hell is that all about?
      Last edited by ♥Mark; 07-26-2013 at 06:18 PM.

    12. #12
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      Quote Originally Posted by AURON View Post
      It depends on the game but I voted for middle w/s, but it changes. I PVP'd a lot in WOW, and walking backwards was a waste of time. instead of the usual aswd format, I went to a asd method. q= left strafe w= forward and e= right strafe. I set the mouse to high, and was able to spin in any direction i needed to every easily without having to back up. This also gave me extra room to use asd for extra spells that would normally be in the 798 spots (yes, I know about shift+123 for extra lists, but this was in addition). In just about every other game, I used the middle finger ws method, but I'm pretty sure there isn't another PC game I've put more hours into.
      I played WoW for hours a day for like 6 months, and somehow never even tried PvP because I was too afraid. Unless it's different from regular getting around, didn't WoW involve moving with the mouse in some weird way, like continuously holding down the right mouse button to move?

      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      How on Earth do you hold Ctrl or Shift whilst moving?
      If you're talking about people who use the ring finger or W/S, my little finger is flexible and bends to the Ctrl button easily, while shift isn't a problem at all. I guess it's a little awkward to hit Ctrl+W because it puts a bit of extra strain on the muscles in the ring finger, but it isn't bad enough to matter. Besides, crouching makes you really slow in every game I can think of so it's not like many quick movements are required.

      Even if you aren't talking about that configuration, someone else did ask me that question before. And I'm starting to wonder if it's rare to have the ability to move your little finger inward. I can do other weird things with my hands like bending my fingers backward past a 90 degree angle which few people seem able to do. Maybe this is another one of those things.

      Quote Originally Posted by Supernova View Post
      An idea occurred to me not long ago, I've yet to give it a try but it seems intriguing. Instead of WASD, shift it over to ESDF, that way there are more keys available as hotkeys right next to your left hand. Anyone else think of this? Seems like a good idea.
      I did think about that, while trying to find a compromise. It might be a good idea.

    13. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dianeva View Post
      If you're talking about people who use the ring finger or W/S, my little finger is flexible and bends to the Ctrl button easily, while shift isn't a problem at all. I guess it's a little awkward to hit Ctrl+W because it puts a bit of extra strain on the muscles in the ring finger, but it isn't bad enough to matter. Besides, crouching makes you really slow in every game I can think of so it's not like many quick movements are required.

      Even if you aren't talking about that configuration, someone else did ask me that question before. And I'm starting to wonder if it's rare to have the ability to move your little finger inward. I can do other weird things with my hands like bending my fingers backward past a 90 degree angle which few people seem able to do. Maybe this is another one of those things.
      Lol I thought Xei was just getting people to try press ctrl+w (which closes the tab). I've never heard of anyone unable to press the ctrl with pinky.

    14. #14
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      Middle on W for sure. If I move over I have all sorts of problems with hitting caps lock and any other button I need to press. With middle on W I can easily hit Z and Q with ring, E R F and X with pointer. The way you do it sounds painful and unwieldy, but if it works for you more power to ya.
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    15. #15
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      Quote Originally Posted by dutchraptor View Post
      Lol I thought Xei was just getting people to try press ctrl+w (which closes the tab). I've never heard of anyone unable to press the ctrl with pinky.
      Haha I actually did that multiple times by accident before while testing, but by the time I got to Xei's comment I'd learned not to.

    16. #16
      Xei
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      I can place my ring finger on W and pinky on Ctrl, though it requires far more dexterity than you'd want to need when you're mashing keys. But how you use WASD whilst crouching or sprinting is what really confused me. How do you strafe left whilst crouching? In the non-mutant finger placement, your pinky is already hovering over shift and control. You just have to press it down and keep using all of the direction keys as usual.

    17. #17
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      You say you can hit Ctrl and W, but that you're confused how to "use WASD whilst crouching or sprinting." What's the difference? Hitting Ctrl and W is probably the most you have to stretch your fingers. Are you saying you can't hit D and Ctrl?

    18. #18
      Xei
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      1. With your middle finger on W, press Ctrl, A, W, and D together.
      2. With your ring finger on W, press Ctrl, A, W, and D together.

    19. #19
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      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      1. With your middle finger on W, press Ctrl, A, W, and D together.
      2. With your ring finger on W, press Ctrl, A, W, and D together.
      3. Left foot yellow
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      I can do both those thingsby pressing A and W with the ring finger at the same time. However, when the hell do you have do press even 2 keys at once?

      And since when does Xei do any sort of non-math related thing in his spare time?

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      You use two keys when you walk going forward-left, forward-right, backward-left, or backward-right.
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    22. #22
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dianeva View Post
      I played WoW for hours a day for like 6 months, and somehow never even tried PvP because I was too afraid. Unless it's different from regular getting around, didn't WoW involve moving with the mouse in some weird way, like continuously holding down the right mouse button to move?
      Either you could hold down forward, or assign a button to auto run. I think by default it was page up, but I set it to one of the side mouse buttons. And yeah arena pvp was intense, but the battlegrounds were just a grind fest.

    23. #23
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dianeva View Post
      I can do both those thingsby pressing A and W with the ring finger at the same time. However, when the hell do you have do press even 2 keys at once?

      And since when does Xei do any sort of non-math related thing in his spare time?
      I graduated so I have a lot more spare time now. Although I'm mainly filling it with computer science, actually.

      Pressing them all at once isn't the point. The point is that non-mutants can just carry on using WASD in the standard position whilst holding Shift or Ctrl. God knows what you do, you must have to constantly move your WASD fingers onto different keys. Your ring finger definitely has to leave W/S if you try to crouch and strafe left.

    24. #24
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      Yeah, my ring finger takes care of W/A/S while hitting Ctrl, and if I have to hit Ctrl+A+W for example, my middle finger will go to W, I think. It doesn't feel like a problem at all, I don't even have to do it consciously, I just tell my character to move a certain way and my hands know what to do instantly without hassle, same as anyone else I'm sure. Or maybe it is a problem and I don't strafe left as often as I would otherwise. It's hard to notice it consciously at all.

      Even if I'm doing it the difficult way, it would be hard to train myself differently because I'm so used to it. It would be like trying to teach myself to type with my fingers a row to the right or something. (Maybe not quite as bad).

    25. #25
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      Never thought I'd be reading this much on finger positions

      I use the mid finger wasd too, more reasons. Mainly, as that is how I started it. Secondly, to press shift / ctrl you need a free finger there, and you use those more often than talking / reloading / using. And those keys are usually e and r near the index finger, sometimes you need a few more buttons nearby. I think this type definitely got an advantage over the others.
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