Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
Jedi Counsel: Distributing Shields

Some might consider this a trade secret; however, I want to share this with the Community (and, hopefully, it will help alleviate the complaints when Tactical Team gets 'brought into line' down the road, as it should be).

Distributing your ship's Shields is one of the most important, yet, often, most neglected skills for new players. Some may not even realize that you are able to redirect your Shield strength, others that may not realize how important it is to do so. Not only does Distributing your Shields help to keep a shield facing up, and, hopefully, avoiding the full-strength damage of enemy projectile attacks; it also helps to maximize your mileage out of shield regeneration, as any regeneration that would normally be applied to a full shield facing, is not applied to the remaining facings, but is wasted, thus, if under fire, it is in your best interests to constantly be balancing your Shields.

Many players, myself included, put the Distribute Shields ability into a slot on one of our hotbars, and this is a good way to help train yourself to use it, but what if there were an easier and even more effective way to use it? Well, it turns out that there is...

Some players (again, myself included) are not comfortable with writing keybinds, some would not even know where to start; so, one of my friends who is much more comfortable with writing in-game keybinds, came up with this:

Quote:
/bind Space "GenSendMessage HUD_Root FirePhasers$$+power_exec Distribute_Shields"
All you need to do is copy that entire line (in the quote box above), paste that line into your chat box (with nothing else), then press Enter.

What does that do for me? Quite simply, it makes it so that every time you press your spacebar, it triggers the Distribute Shields effect (the same as if you had clicked on the power from your ability bar, or clicked the center of your ship icon on the main UI).

Does that interfere with the normal function of the spacebar? Not at all, it will still behave exactly as it did before, only now, it will also distribute your shields for you. Instead of manually having to remember to hit the key in your ability bar or click the center of your ship icon on the UI, just spam that spacebar (like so many of us do), melt your opponents, and keep those shields balanced out and effective.

For PvE content, this is especially useful when facing multiple-ship enemy groups, as they tend to surround your ship, and, in order to optimize your survival, not only do you need the right skills, you also need to ensure that every point of shield hitpoints is well spent. Keeping your Shields constantly distributed means that you are less likely to have enemy fire (especially the powerful torpedo attacks of high-level or Elite mobs) hitting your bare hull.

-Big Red Goomba


NOTE: To test whether the keybind is applied properly, simply enter any System space (ESD or Qo'noS is usually sufficient) and tap your spacebar... You should see the four shield facings on your ship icon in the main UI start to flash, exactly the same as if you clicked on the center of that icon, or pressed a Distribute Shields hotkey.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
08-14-2011, 09:53 PM
And, before someone asks (and I know that someone will): This is not a hack, exploit, or otherwise changing/altering the game files in any way that is not intentional or permitted by the in-game mechanics and tools provided by the Devs.

The ability to bind keys is present and encouraged in the game engine, but the Devs only provide the means/tools to do so, they do not write the binds for us.

Hope that answers that question and clears up any lingering confusion,

-Big Red Goomba
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
08-14-2011, 10:05 PM
I've found that hitting the arrows on the keyboard will effect individual shield facings too
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
08-14-2011, 10:35 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by KTagloH View Post
I've found that hitting the arrows on the keyboard will effect individual shield facings too
True, also at a slightly greater rate than simply hitting Distribute Shields, however, in general practice, Distribute is more than sufficient (and necessary to prevent loss of regeneration, either through Shield Power-related 'natural' regeneration, or the regeneration provided by BOff and Captain abilities). In any case, getting people to use any type of Shield balancing will go a long way toward helping them improve their gameplay experience.

-Big Red Goomba
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
08-14-2011, 11:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigRedJedi
True, also at a slightly greater rate than simply hitting Distribute Shields, however, in general practice, Distribute is more than sufficient (and necessary to prevent loss of regeneration, either through Shield Power-related 'natural' regeneration, or the regeneration provided by BOff and Captain abilities). In any case, getting people to use any type of Shield balancing will go a long way toward helping them improve their gameplay experience.

-Big Red Goomba
I think you should mention the synergy with shield heals in the original post as well.

Shield healing from most powers, as well as natural shield regeneration, applies healing to each facing. A facing that is maximized receives no healing.
By distributing shield power during combat, you ensure that each facing has some damage that can be healed. This can up to quadruple the amount of healing you can get out of your powers!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
08-15-2011, 12:32 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustrumRidcully View Post
I think you should mention the synergy with shield heals in the original post as well.

Shield healing from most powers, as well as natural shield regeneration, applies healing to each facing. A facing that is maximized receives no healing.
By distributing shield power during combat, you ensure that each facing has some damage that can be healed. This can up to quadruple the amount of healing you can get out of your powers!
Updated, Archancellor.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
08-15-2011, 12:57 AM
I got this error message when i hit space:

Quote:
"Power_Exec" takes 2 argument(s).

power_exec <int> <string>
As newbish as I can be with keybinds, i still know that's bad.

and this was even after i'd reverted the spacebar to only fire phasers.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
08-15-2011, 03:44 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pr1983 View Post
I got this error message when i hit space:



As newbish as I can be with keybinds, i still know that's bad.

and this was even after i'd reverted the spacebar to only fire phasers.
Do you have anything else keybound to Space? If you've already bound something else to it, putting new binds into the system like this tends to make the game engine cranky. If you don't have any other keybinds, I would reset all of the keybinds to Default, then enter this string, and that should clear up the problem.

(With the double error message like that, I suspect that the engine is trying to read two, separate binds for the spacebar, and is complaining about it. )

-Big Red
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
08-15-2011, 04:03 AM
That's what i was thinking, but the only other keybind i had was a walking one, that didn't involve the spacebar. i had space assigned to fire all weapons, but i may try the default setting to see.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
08-15-2011, 04:06 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by pr1983 View Post
That's what i was thinking, but the only other keybind i had was a walking one, that didn't involve the spacebar. i had space assigned to fire all weapons, but i may try the default setting to see.
Yeah, as long as you don't have a full bind file loaded up (and only a few manually-adjusted binds), it's easiest just to Reset to Defaults and put the bind in fresh... Should be no problem then.

-Big Red
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