Trying to speed up data entry in back end, by pre-filling 4 custom fields in the case, using rules, the defaults would vary based on encounter medium. I can only seem to update the case status using an action. I looked at creating new rule action but couldn't find any instructions I understood. Is there a better way to do this or can someone point me at some simple instructions?

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depends on what you mean by simple instructions :-) As you probably know simply is subjective.........

If you mean: without programming, you can not add a new rule in CiviRules without programming. If you would like to program but find the instructions on the CiviRules cookbook https://docs.civicrm.org/civirules/en/latest/create-your-own-action/ too complicated I reckon you will need some training on CiviCRM customization as most of the terminology used is IMO fairly straightforward for CiviCRM developers?

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