strategy   ergonomic tips   Fun shouldn't hurt.    

Don't Let Outlaws Make You a Limp-Wristed Sissy!

It almost happened ta me once, no lie. Mebbe it's jus' 'cause I got small hands or somethin' but at one time I almost had ta give up Outlaws 'cause constant playin' had given me a nagging pain in my left wrist, th' one that stays sort of hunched over th' keyboard while playing. I wouldn't'a thought that my wrists would be in danger seein' as how I scooped ice-cream fer 2 years at Baskin Robbins durin' high school an' did Aikido wrist exercises fer about 6 years (heck I still do 'em). But before I realized it my wrist got in a pretty bad way.

I think what really caused th' problem was that I had set th' USE key on th' spacebar so I could pump medkits easily in a firefight. But it turned out that stretchin' my thumb back ta be in position ta use th' space bar, an' holdin' it there fer hours on end really caused some kind of nasty tendon pain in my wrist. It got so bad I couldn't give a thumbs up, and a jump-shot caused an extremely painful twinge on my follow-through. It sucked. It really really sucked.

Now you probably won't have quite as bad a time as I did, but I'll bet that after long games yer wrist often feels like hell. Well here's what I've done ta fix my problem...

First I reprogrammed my Outlaws key layout so that I don't hafta use my thumb for anything in th' game. Now I have th' USE key on th' Q key that I kin reach easily with my lil' pinky (secondary fire is on my middle mouse button). My thumb jus' kinda chills out while I play.

Next I went an' got me a nice ergonomic keyboard, an Acer "Future" keyboard -- you kin read all about it here on Acer's page. Got mine fer jus' $60 by drivin' out to an Acer distributor near Seattle. :) Works great even if it does look kinda like a big green butt with cursor keys around th'... well anyhow it looks weird. I also find it a bit tricky goin' back ta usin' normal keyboards, but fer typin' an' game playin' it's great (except fer some lame games where you can't reprogram th' controls, th' cursor key layout an' detached numeric keypad can make things awkward).

Finally, I got me a squeeze toy. No it's not a rubber ducky (those are cool though). Actually it's jus' a big bouncy ball I had layin' around that's jus' th' right size ta palm in my hand an' squeeze: like this! This sounds funny I know but it stretches an' strengthens th' tendons in my wrist that get all cramped up durin' long Outlaws games. Works like a charm. Actually there are like commercial hand squeeze things that you kin buy, but this works great fer me.

Yes this is really pretty hardcore geek stuff, chances are you don't play frequently enough ta have this problem. But if you do notice yer wrist feelin' kinda stiff or sore, you might wanna take some precautions.


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 strategy   ergonomic tips   Fun shouldn't hurt.