07 January 2011

First person floaters more like it

I've been playing first person perspective games since I first bought a shareware copy of Heretic from a friend for 5 dollars in elementary school. It was a unique experience, here I am holding a weapon in a game, with my hands in front of me, walking around. It's like I really am playing this role. Which made Heretic scary as well. OH NO A MUMMY! Run away, who turned out the lights.... Fast forward to 2011. I've been playing some amazingly thought provoking games, like Amnesia: The Dark Descent. In this you still have a first person view, but it's still a hand tacked onto the screen. You look down towards your feet and you see either a floating shadow or the floor. Where is my feet? I've lost the connection with the camera now, it can't be me. I'm not playing this person, I'm a camera floating around with invisible arms and weird hands like Rayman... Now another game, Mount & Blade:Warband does the opposite. When I look down I see my chest, my legs, the arrow sticking out of my legs. This is better, I think to myself. This is me, inside another person. I see from his point of view, I see my arm swinging the sword around, and I can stare at my feet the entire time if I so feel inclined. So, why is it one of the only games to take this approach. Why has first person view been riddled with floating camera? Because of the inherent problems with having a game model attached to a camera I'm sure, like FOV, clipping, polygonal limitations, etc.. But with all this if Mount & Blade, an indie game can do it so can others. It's something I find really missing from my FP experiences. Sure I love the physics interaction in Frictional Games' Penumbra and Amnesia but floating around with no legs..... If I saw my player bleeding or my leg was visibly wounded I could tell with said attached player model. It would connect me to the avatar so much more.

Taking in all this rambling, I plan on using this first person modeled view on any first person games I make.

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