I don’t want toothpaste, I want to reload! – How the button-mapping can improve

fallout 7 - I don’t want toothpaste, I want to reload! - How the button-mapping can improve

Since I started with FO76 (or even FO in general), its button maps have continued to surprise me in how mixed they are. Things like the ▢ square button doing completely opposite things depending on which similar menu you are in – drop or pickup, and worse it brings up an inventory dialog with a corpse, but is also reload. Frequently when in combat with ghouls flying right and left and I tap ▢ to reload, only to be given a choice of picking up a Pencil or Toothpaste. GAAAAAAA reload my gun!

It did get me thinking, however, about the buttons, so I have cobbled together a mapping that could help immensely, with a minor amount of changes. I suggest having a completely alternate button scheme that you can toggle – I don’t expect the default mapping to change, as that would be too disruptive. And those who are fine with the mapping as it is now can keep it.

I know that the game offers some minor customizations of buttons, but what I’m talking about is contextual to a menu, it isn’t just changing which button generally does a thing.

Two principal problems:

Square Button – Choose one behavior and keep it consistent with inventory menus, not a negative action (drop) or positive action (pickup all) depending on the menu context. It is probably the most disruptive thing I’ve found in the UX, I have to pause and think about which type of inventory menu I’m in… “am I in a pip-boy menu where it means drop?” .. or “view all” where it means pickup? It should universally behave the same, as a “negative” action (drop), since ✕ is the positive/pickup/activate button.

Switching Tabs – Menus and tabs are great, but please stay with one convention across all menus. Right now, it’s different between menu types, Pip-Boy is one way, Inventory another, and Perk cards yet another! There are many times I have been in the Pip-Boy and not thinking about it, hit L1 expecting the tab to shift, but instead, my CAMP pops out. Talk about embarrassing.

I suggest a standard:

  • L1/R1 – Shift top tabs
  • L-Arrow/R-Arrow – Shift second-level tabs

This has a cascading effect, of course, so I’ve highlighted in bold things that change within each dialog:

  • Pip-Boy:
    • L1/R1 – Shift top tabs (instead of L2/R2)
    • L-Arrow/R-Arrow – Shift second-level tabs
    • L2 – Move CAMP (or ideally, a completely different way to move it, as it's rare)
    • R2 – Toggle Favorite on an item
    • ✕ – Positive effect: Activate/Take/Select/Use/Move
    • ▢ – Negative effect: Discard/Cancel/Deselect/Delete/Drop
    • ◯ – Back out of the menu
    • △ – Show Map – put it back so it is less painful to switch between fo4 and fo76
    • – Manage Perk cards – this is less frequently used than Jump to Map is (at least in my play), so flip
  • Inventory Transfer (from a container to your inventory):
    • L1/R1 – Shift top-level tabs
    • L-Arrow/R-Arrow – Shift second-level tabs (the left/right windows)
    • ✕ – Move One: move the selected item from one column to the other (left/right)
    • ▢ – Negative effect: Discard/Drop – a new feature I’d LOVE to have, if not … then just nothing for square.
    • △ – Store-all Junk: Move all junk from left to right, regardless of sub-tab
    • L2 – Move All – everything in the selected category shifts left/right (new functionality)
    • R2 – Move One (duplicate of ✕ for uniformity)
  • Manage Perk Cards:
    • L1/R1 – Shift top-level tabs (SPECIAL categories)
    • U-Arrow/D-Arrow – move between up/down cards active on a SPECIAL
    • L-Arrow/R-Arrow – move between inactive cards on a SPECIAL
    • L2/R2 – Switch between Perk card loadouts – I WANT this feature
  • CAMP construction (no changes)
    • L1/R1 – Shift top-level tabs — Item categories
    • Arrows – Move within categories of items (up/down, and left/right)
  • Vendors – Same as inventory Transfer above, except:
    • ▢ – Not cancel sale, but same as Inventory menu (drop)
    • L2 – Cancel Sale (or R2)
    • R2 – Change Price (of an existing on-sale item … I'm slipping this in because I just want it)
  • Combat:
    • ▢ is for reloading in combat … this is really a separate feature, but when in combat (WARNING/DANGER status) have it that the full-transfer dialog only opens on a press-and-hold action, so if you do tap ▢ in combat, it always reloads, even if you are pointing at a corpse. More time could be spent figuring out the keys to switch to if one wanted, for this, but it could stay as is without a huge impact, if the press-and-hold is made.
  • Scrapping:
    • R2 always scraps (currently only in crafting menu).
    • Pull-and-hold R2 for scrap-all. This also has the mental connection that fits, as it’s the attack/trigger button (i.e. cause some havoc).
  • Crafting:
    • So, I haven’t looked into this one, but follow the same convention where changes need to happen.

I offer this advice for free, so take it for everything you paid for it!

But seriously, can we have a different button map? (please)


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