How to play guide for Caves of Qud

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This page will serve as a basic how to play guide for Caves of Qud. While there is very little information available at this time, we urge you to check back often, as new information is being added all the time! Feel free to edit this guide with any tips, tricks, and suggestions.

Before looking at these guides, make sure Ten Things You Should Do When You Start to Play is read by either pressing '?' or reading it on this very wiki.

External Guides

Control Cheat Sheet (Desktop)

Caves of Qud Keyboard layout compressed.png

Text Version

This is a local copy of this.

Smart Use Space
Talk C
Look L
Get G
Interact nearby Ctrl + Space
Open O
Use Ability A
Fire Missile Weapon F
Reload Missile Weapon R
Throw Thrown Weapon T
Select Target Ctrl+T
Wait Numpad5
Wait 20 turns .
Wait 100 Ctrl+.
Wait n turns Shift+W
Rest until Healed ~ (`)
Rest until morning Ctrl+~ (Ctrl+`)
Walk W
Auto-explore Numpad0
Open Inventory I
Open Equipment E
Open Skills and Powers P
Open Character Sheet X
Open Quests Q
Open Factions Shift+F
Open Tinkering K
Open Journal J
Show Message History Ctrl+M
Use Ctrl to force attack instead of move
7 8 9
4 6
1 2 3
Move Up -
Move Down +
Targeting Mode
Unlock Targeting Cursor F1
Exit Targeting Mode Esc
Toggle Sidebar /
Cycle Sidebar Mode *
Help F1
Quit Ctrl+Q
Load Game F9
Save Game F5
System Menu Esc

Basic Gameplay

Caves of Qud is a Roguelike, which means that characters are represented by characters on a grid. It is turn-based, so the player is free to think over every move.


These actions can be remapped by pressing Escape > Key Mapping > press enter at the action you want to bind, and then the button you want to bind it to. When the game refers to one of the D0-9 keys, it is referring to the numbers that are above the letters. They are not the same as Numpad0-9.

Basic Directionals









Wait 1 turn










0 (autoexplore) Wait 20


On laptop: (todo)


key key(laptop) action
L ; Look. Looking at any creature will give you a brief description, what they have equipped, their basic health status, and their difficulty.
L space ; space Opens up the interaction menu.
L, PgUp or PgDn (none) Scrolls through each item if there are multiple things on the same tile. Currently not rebindable for laptop players.
W, then a direction W, then a direction walk in a straight line until seeing a hostile creature or hitting a wall.
G G Get what you are standing on
Ctrl + Space Ctrl + G Distant interaction. Opens a list of everything in a square nearby.
Space Space Smart use. Defaults to Chat or petting.
< and > or - and + < and > or - and + Auto walks you to the stairs.
Numpad0 (not set) Autoexplore. This automatically collects items flagged as autoget, opens chests, and collects fresh water until you see a hostile creature.
Tilde(~) ~ Wait until healed
Alt Alt Highlights interactable objects. (Main: Alt Display)

Menu Hotkeys

key key(laptop) action
Ctrl + J Ctrl + J Journal. Lists recipes, quests, and lets you mark noted locations on the overworld.
I I Inventory
Q Q Quest list
E E Equipped
P P Skills
X X Character screen
A A Abilities
Ctrl + A Ctrl + A Current status.This menu gives a brief explanation of any status ailments you're currently affected with.
Shift + F Ctrl + F Factions
Ctrl + M Ctrl + M Message Log

PS4 Controller Setup

Currently, Caves of Qud has no built in controller setup. However, the controller can be remapped to certain keypresses to simulate it. A detailed post about this is found here.

Tips and tricks

See also