some tools can only be accessed through keyboard shortcuts or right mouse click menu's, any instructions in the tool threads?
To access with a keyboard command, it is necessary first that the user registers the command. Then, you need to know the tool, to know that it is installed. Renoise does not allow the tool's creator to assign a keyboard command to invoke a tool. The user must do this (I guess that works well to avoid conflicts between commands).
...tool management really sucks in renoise, would be great to have some kind of tool explorer included
That is not true! If a tool does not appear in the list it is because it is "poorly written" or missing something of code. Renoise does not have to adapt to the "vices" of each tool. It is the tool that must comply with certain "norms". The most basic is that the tool is well defined, if it is a window, it should appear in the list of tools (the creator must write "some code" for this to happen), but I suggest uninstalling the tool.
It can also happen that the author of the tool does not maintain it, for new versions, it is an old tool, not optimized for the latest version of Renoise. But that does not depend on Renoise. If there are updates, it's because there must be updates, and the tools update them too, but there is no progress.
A well defined tool appears where it should appear. If it does not appear, it is because the author causes it not to appear (I doubt it's on purpose).