Author Topic:  The Settings Menu  (Read 5210 times)

3 Jul 15

Read 5210 times

Offline GMan129

  • Writer
  • Veteran
  • *

Sooo yeah, this isn't the sexiest thing to write about, but I think it's stuff that everyone should know and be able to take advantage of.

The first thing I want to talk about is...

Game Settings

There are a few critical points in here.

  • Arm Lock: This can help when people are trying to learn the game, I suppose, but it really inhibits your play if you leave it on.
  • Throttle Decay: This is something that I know some people actually use (most of whom are light pilots) but I find my own system of mapping the "Full Throttle" keybind to an actual button captures the advantages that go along with that. The basic idea is that when you hold down W, it increases the Throttle at a slower rate than the mech's acceleration, so using Throttle Decay would let your mech's acceleration max out. I dislike Throttle Decay, so I just use the "Set Throttle 100%" button to accelerate from 0, and the "Invert Throttle" button to flip from forward to reverse.
  • Start in Third Person: This is kind of the same deal as Arm Lock - can be useful to get new players accustomed (though I honestly am not so sure about that...) but really hinders performance in general.
  • Disable Tool Tips: I guess this is just something experienced players don't need. I honestly don't know what the tool tips are like in this game because I don't think I've ever played with them enabled.
  • Enable Cockpit Glass: I guess this is sort of a taste thing, but it can be really annoying depending on the map, and the slight extra realism is really not worth the actual visual obstruction.
  • Mouse Sensitivity: Needs to go way down - one of the biggest mistakes I see newer players making is having it too high. The 0.2 seems low, but it's really not. I could actually stand to go lower.
  • Everything else is pretty much whatever - I recommend enabling all chat because the community is really not toxic in game (at least comparatively speaking, and even then the worst offenders are always on your own team) but yeah, I'd leave everything else alone.
Video Settings

A few of the things in video settings are actually pretty important, and effect way more than just how pretty the game is.

Things like Screen Resolution, Windowed Mode, and V-Sync are all up to you and your system, but some of the other things are important.
  • Direct X Version: I use DX11 and I think that's slightly better performance-wise, but I know there have been issues with it in the past so if you have any, switch over to DX9 and see if that fixes it.
  • Damage Glow: I set this to off because I find it a bit distracting and don't really see the point personally, but some people I know like it. I have recently switched this to On - it doesn't help much, but it can be of slight assistance when firing at mechs that are difficult to see, if your teammates have already hit them.
  • Object Detail: This is a bit of a double-edged sword. On "Low", the game doesn't render some annoying crap like the super thick forest in Caustic Valley's C2. But it also doesn't render slightly more important things like buildings on River City. And of course, higher settings progressively flip those issues. I prefer "Very High" because I think invisible walls are stupid as hell, and also because it feels kinda iffy changing video settings to have the game not render things.
  • Particles: Another double-edged sword deal. Some things effected by particles are actually really cool when you have them on high (PPCs come to mind) but other things are really not (solid opaque black clouds of smoke for example).
  • Post Processing: This doesn't do much as far as I can tell, but it does seem to hurt visibility a bit, so I keep it at Low.
  • Environment: This does a few things, but the most important one is that it determines how accurately ridge lines are drawn. In my opinion, it's very important this be left at Very High if you don't want to be messed with by invisible walls all the time. Of course, even with Object Detail and Environment both at Very High, there are still far too many invisible walls...
  • Anti-Aliasing: It's supposed to smooth out edges, and as far as I know it works, but it also means a significant hit to the game's performance.
  • Effects, Shading, Shadows, and Texturing don't have effects on game playability as far as I'm aware, so I just leave them all at Low to max out my FPS. Except for Texturing. Because this game looks kind of bad with that at Low.
Keyboard Settings (Key Bindings)

This is the bit that I think MWO gets really wrong, and most people don't change, or don't change enough. Before I go into the nitty gritty, a lot of these things require you to re-learn the controls and fight against muscle memory until you get re-accustomed. For a lot of people, that's too much, and I don't blame you for it at all, but if you're looking for every little competitive edge you can get, it's worth at least looking into it.

When setting these up, I followed a few key philosophies:

  • Keep all combat-oriented keys as close to WASD as possible, and the more important/urgent/used the command is, the closer it should be.
  • When it does not conflict with the previous guideline, keep keys in line with gaming standards.
  • When it does not conflict with the previous two, keep keys to where they are by default in MWO.
Which led me to the following keyboard layout.

I feel the need to make a few notes about this though.

  • 6, Tilde, and @k_pause (Pause/Break) are all mapped to my mouse for greater accessibility; you may prefer using Tilde as Push To Talk and something like a number key as Activate Module Slot 2 if you don't have this option.
  • I always put Cool Shot in the top module slot and Strikes or UAV in the bottom one (except for rare cases like the Gauss Jager when I don't use Cool Shot at all), because I find that using Tilde for all my non-Cool Shot consumables is just simpler than giving them all their own hotkey.
  • Using CTRL for MASC and LSHIFT for Arm Lock (so, flipping them from the image) isn't exactly eggregious. I'd say just pick one and stick with it.
  • I rarely (if ever) use: Weapon Door Toggle, Cockpit Light (though this one is useful on River City Night), Advanced Zoom, or Toggle AMS, so if you do use one of those often (and urgently) enough, you may want to shuffle things around a bit to fit it in. Though the only one of those that may deserve it is probably Advanced Zoom, which I would probably put on T instead of Power if I used it myself.
Other than that, if you have an idea for something you think would work better for you, I highly encourage you to run with it. But I still very much believe that these keybinds are way better than the default and I do not regret the time spent re-adjusting my play to suit them.

GMan129 is currently an officer of the Steel Jaguar competitive team, is the owner of and writer for MetaMechs, and recently begun writing at NGNG as well. He has been playing MechWarrior Online since the early days of closed beta, and has spent far too much time and money on this crap. If you're interested in supporting his self-destruction, consider contributing to his PayPal and Patreon accounts!
« Last Edit: 14 Jul 15 by GMan129 »

4 Jul 15

Reply #1

Offline IqfishLP

  • Rookie
  • *

I would like to add that for everyone who has problems with the heat-steam clouds emitted by your own mech bringing your game down to 1-5 fps, post-processing on "low" fixes the problem.