Entering Cheat Codes With International Keyboards

Close-Up Of Laptop Keyboard
Some international keyboards do not have the tilde key like a U.S. keyboard making it hard to use cheat codes.

Simone Ranzuglia / EyeEm/Getty Images 

Most game cheats require a certain button to be pressed to activate a cheat or bring up the cheat console. However, the keypresses assume you're using a U.S.-based or U.S.-International-based keyboard layout. Layouts for other languages may not work as expected.

What Keys Are Needed?

A large number of PC-based cheats use the tilde key to activate the cheat console. This approach is not set in stone. Some games simply require an alphabetical key to be pressed, such as the Z button.

Example Cheat Problem

For Oblivion, cheats require the tilde key to load the cheat console. On a 101-key U.S. keyboard, this requirement is not a problem; the tilde key is located just above the tab key, and a simple press does the trick. On a Swedish keyboard, however, the tilde key is located near the Enter key and does nothing to load the cheat console.

You're not out of luck: Just use the key in the same location as the tilde key on U.S. keyboards. On a Swedish keyboard, the correct key is the one that has the ½ and § symbols on it.

Keyboard Maps That Work as Expected

You shouldn't experience any problems pressing the tilde key or the key above the tab key with the following keyboard layouts:

  • U.S.
    • Press the tilde key
  • U.S.-International
    • Press the tilde key
  • AZERTY (France, Belgium)
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Dvorak Simplified
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • QZERTY
    • Press the key above the tab key
  • Sebeolsik 390
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Sebeolsik Final
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Sebeolsic Noshift
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Arabic
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Bulgarian
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Chinese
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Danish
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Devanāgarī
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • French
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Greek
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Hangul (Korean)
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Hebrew
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Japanese
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Norwegian
    • Press the key above the TAB key
  • Swedish / Finnish
    • Press the ½ / § key above the TAB key
  • U.K.
    • Press the grave accent key above the TAB key.

Potentially Problematic Keyboard Layouts

The following keyboard layouts aren't likely to work with cheats that require the tilde key:

  • Armenian
  • Bulgarian BDS
  • Canadian French
  • Canadian Multilingual Standard
  • Danish
  • Hungary
  • Norwegian
  • Portuguese (Portugal)
  • Portuguese (Brazil)
  • QWERTZ (Germany, Austria)
  • QWERTZ (Swiss German, Swiss French, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg)
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Thai

Options

The tilde-key problem is, at heart, a keyboard-layout problem. If your standard keyboard layout precludes the use of the tilde key as mapped to U.S.-based keyboards, add alternative keyboards and cycle to them when you need to.

To add a new keyboard in Windows 10, search for Language Settings to open the Time & Language control panel. Click your language, then select Options to reveal the Language Options menu. Select Add a keyboard to add a new keyboard layout for that language. Pressing Win+Spacebar cycles through installed keyboard layouts, so you can quickly find the layout that works for you.

If English isn't your primary language, you may need to install English-language support before adding the keyboard layout.