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Intro

One of the first features you come across (and one of the most important) in Riders of Icarus is the ability to pick your own combat style. There are two choices, and both are very different in both how they work and how efficient they are when in combat. Learning both is definitely beneficial, as you can adapt to whichever works the best for you, but understanding the fundamental differences is essential.

Action Mode

The action mode is what the game suggests for all physical melee classes. It resembles games like TERA, where you are attacking whatever is in front of you, as if you’re physically there. So instead of simply targeting an enemy and hitting a key to make it attack, you’re actually following, maneuvering yourself around them, and attacking in real-time. This is best for those that are able to actively keep up with positioning, as it makes the flow of battle much smoother. For example, moving from one enemy to the next is as simple as running around as needed. Changing targets is fairly simple as well, since you’re actually moving to whatever it is you’re attacking. It’s worth noting that unlike similar games, Riders of Icarus is very forgiving when in this mode. For example, if you’re attacking an enemy and turn away to another, it will still attempt to swing at the previous target. At the same time, this also means that you need to target whatever it is you want to attack, as you could otherwise continue attacking the wrong target if you aren’t attentive (which is easy to do). Swapping is as simple as hitting the “tab” key and watching where you swing next, so it isn’t a huge problem, but it is definitely something that takes a little practice if you’re already in the mindset of other games and how they handle it.

Standard Mode

Standard mode is suggested by the game for those that are playing ranged classes, though it can really benefit everyone. This is the setup where you click to move (though WASD still work fine), target an enemy by either clicking or hitting “tab,” and then either click skills to attack or use number keys. This is familiar for most gamers already, and can be a great way to ease into the new game and learn how everything works. For ranged classes it is especially beneficial, in that it’s much easier to attack from a distance when you’re using the click to move feature. The downside to the standard mode is that it’s a lot more difficult to play using just the keyboard (which is what many, especially PvPers, prefer to do). In order to make this work well, learning a new key setup is essential. When moving, WASD is quick and efficient. However, when moving around an enemy, you want to be able to look around. A and D do strafing left and right, and Q and E do the actual turning. This method of moving takes a bit of practice to get used to, but it is a lot better and easier than using the mouse and trying to manage everything like that. It increases both survivability and fighting efficiency, making the game much more enjoyable.

Key Binding Number Pad

Regardless of the setup you choose to go with (note that you can change your decision at any time through the settings menu, so you can experiment with both and figure out what works best for your personal play style), you will likely want to set up number pad keys to make attacks much more accessible. You can do this at any point by doing the following: • Hit Escape • Settings • Key Bindings • Under Basic Slot 1-10, set the Secondary keys to the number pad ones This new setup makes it possible to attack while moving, have quick and easy access to each of your skills, and further boosts efficiency. If you’re not already familiar with playing like this, it’s worth giving it a go. While it may feel a little awkward at first, it makes things a great deal easier once you get used to it. Do note, however, that this doesn’t always work so well if you play using the mouse most of the time. In this case, utilizing the number pad may be more of a hindrance than a help. That said, once you get down the keyboard-only play (or at least to a large degree – you don’t need to break away from the mouse altogether), you’ll see a noticeable difference in your ability to progress through the game and deal with various scenarios.

Options, Options, and More Options

It’s great to see a game that doesn’t force you to play their way. By opening the doors to picking your own combat style, Riders of Icarus has truly given a choice in how you experience it. Tack on the fact that you can change between the two battle styles at any point, and it makes the system even more great. You may very well find that you play better with one style using ranged characters and the other when melee, or you may be able to quickly and easily adapt using both. Whatever the choice, it’s yours to make!

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