Dota 2 is one of the most complicated video games out there and you will need every little edge possible to triumph over your opponents – getting a good grasp of the available Dota hotkeys is just one of them. Here’s what you should be on the lookout for in the darkest depths of the settings menu.

What do hotkeys do in Dota 2?

Essentially, Dota hotkeys allow you to streamline your gameplay process and increase your actions per minute total while also ensuring that you can deliver specific actions in lightning-quick fashion. Having a good hotkey setup will make you much more efficient throughout each stage of a Dota 2 match and can radically improve your KDA, making them a must-have for any serious Dota 2 player.

The options menu offers “normal” and advanced Dota hotkeys as well, and it’s well-worth setting them all up in a way that’s comfortable for you so you can fully take advantage of all the possible shortcuts.

How do I set up hotkeys in Dota 2?

Clicking on the small gear icon in the top left corner of the main menu allows you to customize your Dota hotkeys, commands and other settings in Dota 2. Some of the Dota hotkeys are not bound by default while others already have a default setting that you can adjust. Pro players and veteran pub stars all have their own specific setups, but there’s one thing they all agree on: using Dota hotkeys is a must. Here are the basic suggestions to consider:

Hotkey templates in Dota 2

  • Arrow: the default layout.
  • WASD: same setup for Dota hotkeys but adapted for WASD camera movement.
  • Legacy: similar to the original Dota hotkeys setup, with different ability hotkeys for every single hero and unit.
  • MMO
  • League of Legends
  • Heroes of Newerth
  • Smite

Unbindable keys in Dota 2

Escape, Shift, Left Ctrl & Right Ctrl, the two main mouse clicks are unbindable. Alt (and AltGr) can only be bound together with something else, not on their own. Technically, you can bind the Windows key and the Print Screen key, but they will keep their primary function alongside it (bringing up the Start menu and taking a screenshot respectively), so it’s not exactly a good idea to do so. You have so many other keys to choose from to set up your Dota hotkeys!

Quickcast hotkeys in Dota 2

Most players find quickcast superior to regular casting due to the faster turnover offered. To make sure that you can still use the regular cast in specific scenarios, a good setup is to use Q, W, E, D, F and R for quickcast and a combo setup with Alt for each (so Alt-Q, Alt-W etc.) for regular cast commands. Beyond the quickcast Dota hotkeys, enabling Quick Attack and Quick Move also streamlines your gameplay experience.

Suggested item hotkeys in Dota 2

The number keys from 1 to 6 should do the trick, with the TP set to Space as item hotkeys commands.

Best movement hotkeys for Dota 2 players

  • Attack move/force attack: set to A
  • Cancel current action: set to S

Other useful Dota 2 hotkeys worth setting up

  • Directional Moves
  • Control Groups
  • Learn Ability
  • Purchase Quickbuy
  • Select Courier and Courier Deliver Items

What settings do Dota 2 pros use?

At the end of the day, finding a setup you’re comfortable with is always going to be more important than copying a specific pro player’s setup. Though you might get dazzled by the performances seen in Dota 2 esports matches, playing around with the game and testing multiple setups to find what fits you the best in terms of Dota hotkey usage is the most efficient way to go about this. Nevertheless, pro players’ Dota hotkey setups in the game can serve as an excellent starting point, and here are a few that are definitely worth considering regardless of your own skill level.


That covers the basics of Dota hotkeys and how to use them in the game for the best effect. These tips should help you get a lot of juicy MMR in no time. If you want to go further down this rabbit hole, be sure to check out specific pro player configs, hotkeys commands and other optimization guides to further get an edge on the competition!