Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
Having played STO as my first MMO I found my game experience was saved by the kind contributors that started the various threads on what it took to make the game playable using an Xbox controller. Having fiddled and tweaked and rearranged and reoptimized constantly from Lt1 up to VA1 I wanted to share the settings that I have found useful for fun gameplay back with the community in case they are helpful to others.

The heart of this comes from the many useful insights on one of the main threads:

I've made a number of changes while trying to keep as much parallel structure as possible between space and ground controls. I use the left trigger and bumper as independent shifts, and this allows almost enough unique sequences to handle even a VA tier ship, though there just are not quite enough key combinations... so I tend to leave a few unmapped leftovers in the toolbar.

The layout changed a lot as I went up in rank, but this now works pretty efficiently at all levels. While the space toolbar is a bit sparse at lower levels, I think it is ultimately helpful for the core abilities to have assigned spots that allow you to intelligently add new abilities as you progress.

Note that switching ships (and in some cases BOs) will require reslotting a lot of the commands. Plus STO likes to drop weapons and things into random slots every now and then, so I spend a lot of time ctrl-rt-dragging unwanted elements out of trays 1 & 2.

For space this is designed to work with the 2-bar + BO layout, showing trays 1 & 2. This allows you to see cooldowns of all the non-BO abilities/devices. I've tried to keep universal and career-specific abilities together and in order, and by default I use the blue/X, yellow/Y, and red/B buttons to represent Science, Engineering, and Tactical, though this doesn't hold with upper-tier ships that are biased strongly for one dicipline.

I'm including the keybind files which belong in the "Star Trek Online/Live" directory as well as JPEG guides to the controller functions and a guide to slotting abilities into trays.

I hope this might make it a little easier for some players with a similar approach to mine have an easier time getting started. Note that the keybind files are hand-edited so things are grouped more logically than with the /bind_save_file command.

The full info on using keybind files has been documented many times on the forums, but the quick tutorial is:
  • Open the Options window to the "Keybinds" tab.
  • Select Space in the popup
  • In the chat window enter /bind_load_file x360-space-v1.txt
  • Switch to Ground
  • In the chat window enter /bind_load_file x360-ground-v1.txt
  • Drag the abilities into the appropriate slots following the guide
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2 Better Graphics Links
12-05-2010, 11:59 PM
Oops, the forum really crunches those JPEGS down to tiny thumbnails. You can get better copies at:
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
But I just thought I'd say that I've been using these keybinds and have printed out the sheets, so I don't forget them.
I'm finding them to be very good so far, so thanks!

Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
02-04-2012, 12:55 PM
This is great, thanks for making this available for us! I'm having some issues with the activation button though, and I'm wondering if anybody has figured it out. When something pops up, like to talk to somebody or interact with a console, sometimes the activation button won't work on the Xbox controller, even when highlighted. It seems more likely to happen when there are two or more choices, but is also sometimes inconsistent when there is one choice (like chasing the mini-Qs in Starfleet Academy).

The only change I have made so far is to add the map to the ground configuration as well as space (left trigger plus left bumper works in space but not on the ground as-is).

Thanks again, and please let me know if you've figured out how to make the interact button work consistently!

(Also, does anybody know how to map low priority interaction pop-ups to the gamepad? A search through the keybindings thread didn't seem to show how to do that).
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
02-05-2012, 10:23 AM
I came up with a workaround:

Just download joytokey (Google it) and assign the F key to the activate button on your gamepad. That seems to work consistently for me so far. I also now have it set up to use the left trigger as a shift to let me use the right stick as a mouse, and also to let me switch from jog to run. The unregistered version works fine so far.

Hope this helps someone else that has the same problem, it's been driving me crazy for hours!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6 Updates coming soon!
02-09-2012, 06:46 PM
Glad you find these useful. Everybody's gameplay is different, but being able to play STO more like a console game makes all the difference to me!

Note that since my original post I've been tweaking and improving the key binds to cram more tray slots into the scheme but in an intuitive way. Once I get the instructions cleaned up I'll update this post with pointers to the new and improved files!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
02-11-2012, 10:12 AM
I'm right there with you on wanting to use console controls for this game. My PC is like a media center hooked up to my HDTV, so mouse and keyboard aren't the best option for me.

Keep up the good work, and I look forward to your next rev!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
After ongoing use, and leveling a couple of characters to VA, I've found a number of tweaks have been needed to maximize power slotting and efficient button use on the controllers. You can download the new key bind files and guides from here:

Some of the key features of this include:
  • Common actions (scan, interact) moved to joystick clicks
  • The ABXY buttons access all 12 BOFF abilities of a VA ship
  • For ground combat, crouching, aiming, and shooter mode toggle are all shifted joystick clicks
  • Career powers are all slotted into Back/Start buttons in similar layouts for ground and space

The layout file shows how to slot your abilities to work with the key binds. For ground you use two rows, for space you use all 3. I tend to fly now with the 4-tray option in space to let me see the powers by BOFF, but also by slot.

Limitations in the number of tray slots have constrained the layout somewhat, but ground and space have been laid out in similar fashions as much as possible. Note that with all the extra abilities you can get through bridge consoles and equipment, you may not be able to connect them all to an x360 button click. As such I often move little-used powers (like Abandon Ship) out of the default spots in favor of more useful abilities. There is still some overflow in the 3-tray and 4-tray layouts to put these into clickable (or keyboard-mappable) slots.

Note that while the right joystick click is used (along with the D-pad) to make most interact selections, some dialogs only respond to the A button.

I have also noted that if you manually click an interaction on ground (like "Take Items"), you won't get button control back until you drag the camera view around slightly using the mouse.

I hope you find these useful, even as a starting point for your own layouts!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
02-21-2012, 05:45 PM
Woohoo, thanks a ton! This scheme fixes all of the issues I was having before by splitting up the "activate" button and the A button. Now I don't need joytokey anymore.

I already used one of the extra slots to add my map back, so I'm all set. The layout is even more intuitive than the previous one.

This deserves a sticky in my book... it would've helped me get into the world of F2P STO a LOT easier!
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
02-27-2012, 10:33 AM
About time too since the controller makes it a much better experience for me tbh I don't why cryptic have'nt braught out a patch that sorts this problem in the first place it would not be that hard

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