Of Mice and Men… This Time It’s Personal!

Remember how I was a-bleating about my inability to play GW2 with just a mouse and keyboard? Well after a very lengthy & bloody useful comments storm on that post (thanks guys – you know who you are and you all really helped!) I decided to try the Logitech G13 gamepad. I also swapped back to my Logitech G500 mouse and have shoved the Razer Naga in a drawer.

Now let me say that although I’ve done this to play Guild Wars 2 I have yet to try it out with Guild Wars 2 as there hasn’t been another stress test or beta weekend yet (I’m hoping there will be one this coming weekend) so I still don’t know if works. Still, I did get to test it out with LOTRO and after mucho head-scratching, heaps of program switching and a naval carrier full of swearing I managed to get to a set up that pretty much worked *and* has the capacity to work for GW2.

At first I tried strafing with the G13 thumb stick whilst moving & looking with the mouse but although it was easy to do, I found it tied my left hand up and I couldn’t fire off the skills. I tried loads more variations, even pulling out the Naga again, but it wasn’t until I had a brainwave over a ham & mayo butty on Sunday morning that I had a break-through. The G500 has a mousewheel that can be tilted left and right for scrolling. Or, it occurred to me, strafing!

Now it took me a looooong time to actually get LOTRO to recognise these small, sideways movements – in the end I found that I had to kill the G500 SetPoint software if I wanted LOTRO to see the side-scrolling movements and edit the keymap file to disable the up/down mousewheel scrolling which was making strafing a game of crazy mouse swingball. But by then end I found that I had a system that worked!

My right hand controls the camera & where I look as well as forward & backwards movement – my thumb sits on the wheel and tilts it left and right for circle strafing. This means I can do all the movement with my right hand so my left hand can sit on the G13 and hit the skills, jump & dodge (which I just made another jump in LOTRO). I took this rig out for a spin in Moria and it worked pretty well, I have to say. It’s going to take a lot of practice, but at least I feel the end result is achievable.

Hopefully there will be a beta soon and I can regain my hope.

Oh, one piece of advice if you are interested in the G13 – get big hands!


  1. Getting the right control scheme really does make all the difference. It surely helps if you can figure out what works for you sooner, rather than later, as re-training is usually more difficult. (Human beings are incredible “inertia machines” and it is certainly much easier to fall back into established habits rather than forming new ones.) I’m not sure how long it will take before I no longer have to “think” about my new movement scheme and it just becomes second nature again… it will certainly help when I can play GW2 on a regular basis.

    The BWEs are actual TESTS – not just demos, so I’m really not sure we will see another one before the first couple of weeks in June (sad as that makes me…) ANet had plenty of work cut out for them from the feedback of the first BWE, and there’s this little thing called the “space/time continuum” which unfortunately makes it impossible for all of the new programming and bug fixes to be done instaneously.

    I’m pretty sure if we don’t hear anything by Wednesday the 23rd, then we most likely will not see another BWE in May. If they do actually manage to push another build out before the end of May I will be seriously impressed (and more than a little bit concerned about the health and welfare of the individual employees!)

    Although the fact that these tests are not on a fixed schedule means we’re probably going to go longer between the 1st and 2nd ones, it also means that as we get closer to launch, and things get a bit more “buttoned down” then they will likely be spaced closer together.

  2. Geez HB… all those operating nuances skeer me. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be a hardcore when it comes to gaming. It’s interesting to read about though, fascinating even.

    1. On mate, I’m by no means hardcore – the real hardcore guys only use a mouse and keyboard because the e-sport scene only lets certain types of hardware in their contests – if you turn up with a fancy keyboard, mouse & gamepad there’s no chance you can use them. With a normal mouse and keyboard, I’m a whizz on Left 4 Dead 2 😀 It’s just bloody MMOs require you to use soooo many more keys!

  3. After the stress test I never really expected to see another beta until June – it’s a shame, but they are going to be working like mad on the next iteration. Still, another stress test would be very welcome – they could run one a fortnight and just ignore all the feedback to keep us lot happy 😀

    1. “they could run one a fortnight and just ignore all the feedback to keep us lot happy.”

      True, but then you would have to deal with the braying masses who would loudly proclaim to any and all who will listen that no progress is being made from one test to the next. Honestly, it’s a classic “Kobayashi Maru” situation, except in this case both the test-taker and test-giver are having their character tested.

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