Keybinds – Do I or Don’t I?

maxresdefaultPart of the fun of playing Star Trek Online is the continuous tweaking of your character/ship build as new gear, skills and abilities are rolled out. I don’t pretend my toons are tricked out like the top DPSers, mainly because I’m not really chasing max DPS. I don’t have many of the lockbox or lobi consoles required for top DPS builds, and I never bothered to upgrade my gear to Mk XIV/Epic.

But there is one thing that I could do, but never did: Using keybinds.

Now, I know all top-DPSers use keybinds. When set up properly, all you need to do is mesh your spacebar repeatedly to fire all the things, with the circumstantial clicky powers set to one side. STO doesn’t have a built-in keybind program like other games; for example, I used keybinds in Rift and it’s a very slick interface – you just drag and drop the power icons in the order you want, and save it as a special “playlist”. No such luck with STO — as far as I know you need to set up a TXT file and follow a specific tray layout for it to work. It all sounds rather… primitive.

Another reason I don’t use keybinds is the fact that I feel more… “hands on” when flying my ships. Like I am actually controlling it rather than relying on an auto-pilot. Same reason I drive a standard and not an auto-transmission. šŸ˜‰

That said, there are a LOT MORE clicky powers these days compared to when I first started playing. There are more BOFF abilities now, as well as gear sets and specializationsĀ that grant clicky powers… and the STO UI interface isn’t the most responsive if you try to click a bunch of icons in rapid succession. I have come to notice that it can take me up to 7 ot 8 seconds to activate everything as I set up my initial attack in any given encounter — assuming everything activates properly — which is way, way too long.

I will probably never go to a full keybind setup, but at this point I think it’s beneficial to use a partial setup to offload a bunch of buffs/debuffs to a single key.

What about you guys out there? Do you use keybinds or not? If so, how are they set up? Inquiring minds want to know.



6 thoughts on “Keybinds – Do I or Don’t I?

  1. I didn’t even really know what keybinds were until I read this. I’ve been flying my ship manually this whole time too. lol

    And my car has a manual transmission too; I flat-out refuse to own an automatic (been there, done that, didn’t like it). I like having control over what gear my car is in at all times.


      1. Not backwards – I just use what works best for me and don’t see any point in changing unless there’s a clear benefit in it. My tiny car (’07 Honda Fit) gets even better gas mileage with its manual transmission anyway.

        On that note, I used to have a vintage ’60s Dual 1009 turntable (older than I am!) and a collection of old and new vinyl records until just a few years ago. Talk about “backwards!” lol

        But I sold all of that stuff because I just don’t have time for it anymore, nor the room for it in my tiny apartment. Plus I like the practicality and convenience of having my entire music library stored on my phone.


  2. i don’t use keybinds. i got as far as reading instructions that included making a textfile and stopped caring. I’m too lazy for that much effort.

    if the game stopped erasing my power trays every few days, or filling them with garbage each time i swap ships maybe. but re-editing a text file everytime that happens? trying to make sure the right power is in the right order on the right tray? sorry, i just can’t bring myself to care enough for that. too busy pew pewing.


    1. At least now I know I’m not the only one who hasn’t used keybinds!

      You’re right though — I generally stick to one ship per toon, not a lot of swapping so it’s not a big issue for me. But if you regularly change ships I can see this as a major headache.

      On the other hand, if that happens to you a lot, make sure you use Ship Loadouts to save your setup. Cryptic codes being what they are, sometimes the Loadouts will malfunction, but they should work most of the time!


      1. Same here; once I have a ship that I really like, I tend to stick with it and not use anything else from then on unless I have some specific need for it, like my Intrepid sci vessel for closing rifts in the mirror event, or my Nandi for the built-in bank/mail/exchange access. And my Mercury (tac pilot ship) is just hilarious fun to fly every now and then.


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