Basically I see two optimization goals:
- A roguelike should require as little command knowledge as possible in order to get newbies quickly hooked and allow a fast introduction to the game.
- A roguelike should require as few key presses as possible to achieve something in order to allow experts to quickly move on.
Take the classic roguelike example: There are commands for almost anything (eat, read, drop, pickup, zap, dip, etc. pp.). Most of them could easily be combined into 'u'se and 'm'anipulate commands ('use' for interaction with stuff in your possession, 'manipulate' for interaction with stuff external to the PC).
Two commands would be very simple to learn for newbies (especially since 'use' could be folded into general inventory management) but I personally find them annoying when playing as an expert - as a specialized 'eat' e.g. automatically only shows eatable items which makes me play faster than requiring extra filtering.
Today I spent a few hours on adding configurable keybindings but the general problem runs much deeper as it is a UI interface problem. That issue I don't want to tackle now - let it be done for now with the comment that ADOM II is moving towards "best of both worlds". There will be one or two general purpose commands to do about anything and there will be many specialized commands for quick interaction.
The one thing that is continuing to haunt me are reasonable key bindings for notebooks. I don't have a number pad and I have to admit that I find myself again and again just using the cursor keys although that is less than optimal. I never have grown attached to the classical roguelike (VI) key bindings of hjkl...(whatever) and I have been experimenting with i, j, k, l (for N, W, S, E) and u, o, m, . (for NW, NE, SW, SE) but that's neither standard nor convenient - especially not for left-handed people.
So I'm looking for input from people who mostly are playing rogue likes on notebooks without numeric key pads. Which bindings do you find convenient, which ones do you hate?
Your input probably won't make it into 0.2.4 but I finally need to find a convenient solution to this problem. Thanks!