Third-person or First-person—your preference?

Brian Boru

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As far as I know, this is mostly a shooter Q, but if it applies to RPG too let me know and I'll move this into the General forum.

I have a strong preference for first-person, I like the illusion that I'm seeing the world thru my own eyes.

I find 3rd-P more difficult to control, as well as being less immersive. I imagine it's my own clumsiness, but I seem to regularly get my avatar in the way of targets or things I should be spotting, eg enemies.

How about you?
 
As far as I know, this is mostly a shooter Q, but if it applies to RPG too let me know and I'll move this into the General forum.

I have a strong preference for first-person, I like the illusion that I'm seeing the world thru my own eyes.

I find 3rd-P more difficult to control, as well as being less immersive. I imagine it's my own clumsiness, but I seem to regularly get my avatar in the way of targets or things I should be spotting, eg enemies.

How about you?
I think this question could also be asked about RPG's, but I also think the answers might change accordingly.

But generally speaking I like the option to switch between both views, as different situations benefit differently from either. If a game is "cinematic" or involves "reveals" at all, then first-person often fares better, whereas in third person you often see more than you normally would, and can do weird looking-around-corner moves that technically make no sense for your character.

(Though the alternative is often a weird first-person gray area where your head is poking around a corner or above a piece of cover without the enemy seeing you somehow, even though in real life they'd definitely see the top of your head and shoot at it.)

If forced to choose, I tend toward first-person.
 

Colif

Moderator
if shooters: 1st person
if RPG: 3rd person but it also depends on the game.
Fallout lets you do both, and I would stick to 1st person in it.
Fallout is a rpg that turned into a shooter... or Bethesda didn't know what they wanted it to be ... I am willing to go with the later. So I guess it has many views cause it doesn't stay inside a box

Some racing games also give you same choices, actually more choices really.
 
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I don't play a lot of strictly "shooter" games, but when I do I prefer the 1st person point of view. I just feel more immersed in the game as a character, and cut scenes often open up to actually show your character. This preference would also include RPGs (discounting the CRPG sub genre).

Game genre's seem to blend into each other in recent years anyway, so it's often difficult to actually place a game in a specific genre. Take the 1st person Fallout games as example (as Colif referenced above). Those play a lot like shooter games (especially FO4), and I wouldn't want to play them in 3rd person perspective. And if the option exists to switch to 3rd person, I find the movement, combat and associated animations to be a bit rough. Whereas if a game was initially designed as 3rd person (like the Witcher games), those games are better in 3rd person.

But overall, given a choice, I'll take 1st person perspective over 3rd.
 
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Kaamos_Llama

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I think it depends on the game. A game really needs to be designed with one or the other as the focus. That's why Fallout 3 and Skyrim felt awful in 3rd person, it was added as an afterthought and not really meant to be used.

Something like Control or Max Payne 3 wouldn't work if you changed the perspective to first person and kept the level design and encounters exactly the same. You wouldnt be able to see certain things in the periphery you were supposed to, and fire coming out of nowhere from enemies the perspective had hidden from you would just feel cheap. I think it would work the same vice versa, a Dishonored or Prey wouldn't work if you changed the camera and nothing else.
 
I agree with Kaamos_Llama (that's the second thread in a row). Some game mechanics work better in first person and some better in third person. Cover based shooters work a lot better in third person for example, but something like Doom would just not have the same impact in third person.
Skyrim is fine in first person because you can usually take a few hits from an enemy you didn't see coming without dying, but I can't imagine playing a Souls-like in first person.
 

Brian Boru

Moderator
Something like Control or Max Payne 3 wouldn't work if you changed the perspective to first person
Coincidentally I started a couple of hours of Control last night, didn't realize it was a 3rd-P beforehand. It's now uninstalled :(

The 3-P just didn't work for me—my clumsiness no doubt, since it works for many. Trying to get the right avatar position & camera position for a shootout was annoying, and the way the view jumps around when popping in and out of doorways disorients me.
Didn't help that all I played was corridor-style, which I don't enjoy. Ah well.

I agree with Kaamos_Llama (that's the second thread in a row)
Ooh that's worrying, check your meds.
 

Kaamos_Llama

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Coincidentally I started a couple of hours of Control last night, didn't realize it was a 3rd-P beforehand. It's now uninstalled :(

The 3-P just didn't work for me—my clumsiness no doubt, since it works for many. Trying to get the right avatar position & camera position for a shootout was annoying, and the way the view jumps around when popping in and out of doorways disorients me.
Didn't help that all I played was corridor-style, which I don't enjoy. Ah well.
I guess everyone is wired differently. I do much prefer 3rd person for melee focused games but for shooting I can swing either way. Not particularly good at either.

I think you might have liked the world and lore. There's a lot of corridor stuff as The Oldest House is the setting for almost the whole game, but there are a lot of more open sections and they do some amazing surreal stuff with the physics of the building later on. It also has a great sense of humour and imagination, and a weird mysterious supernatural Finnish janitor. Lomille lomps holiday homps

The combat is I think Remedys best so far having not played Quantum Break, but it still gets a little samey by the very end IMO.
 
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First person is my go to if i had to pick one, but i love 3rd person too. Really depends on what im doing in the game and how its set up graphically, how well the weapons and abilities work together etc.

If Destiny 2 was 3rd person i probably wouldnt play it nearly as much as i do but again if The Division was 1st person, i probably wouldnt like it as much as i did, i know this now after playing the XDefiant closed beta which is basically 1st person shooter division and its just not as fluid as its 3rd person counterpart.
 
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I guess everyone is wired differently. I do much prefer 3rd person for melee focused games but for shooting I can swing either way.
I suspect that some gamers who grew up primarily and/or exclusively on early PC shooters (Wolf3D, Doom, Quake, Half-Life, Unreal, etc.) may have a preference for first-person, as there weren't a lot of third-person games like that on the PC. I think third-person shooters started out primarily as console games (and may have been eventually ported over to PC, but that was less common early on.)
 

Kaamos_Llama

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I suspect that some gamers who grew up primarily and/or exclusively on early PC shooters (Wolf3D, Doom, Quake, Half-Life, Unreal, etc.) may have a preference for first-person, as there weren't a lot of third-person games like that on the PC. I think third-person shooters started out primarily as console games (and may have been eventually ported over to PC, but that was less common early on.)
That would make sense. I've grown up with both really, although I had PC's a couple of years before consoles in the 90's so it feel pretty natural to me either way.
 
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That would make sense. I've grown up with both really, although I had PC's a couple of years before consoles in the 90's so it feel pretty natural to me either way.
The other reason I made that distinction is because, and I say this with all due respect, early console games weren't known for allowing the sort of precise aiming that tends to go hand-in-hand with first-person POV, whereas third-person games often have aim assist. (At least that's my understanding. I've got far less overall firsthand experience with consoles; I've played on most of them, but only owned three of them, and two were pre-NES.)
 

Kaamos_Llama

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The other reason I made that distinction is because, and I say this with all due respect, early console games weren't known for allowing the sort of precise aiming that tends to go hand-in-hand with first-person POV, whereas third-person games often have aim assist. (At least that's my understanding. I've got far less overall firsthand experience with consoles; I've played on most of them, but only owned three of them, and two were pre-NES.)
You're right I'm pretty sure console shooters of both perspectives all have some degree of aim assist. Before Halo no one was playing much FPS seriously on any kind of console IIRC.

Not sure if the same is true of PC 3rd person games when using a controller. I imagine so, but I'll use mouse and keyboard for anything that involves shooting so I'm not 100%.
 

Brian Boru

Moderator
gamers who grew up primarily and/or exclusively on early PC shooters (Wolf3D, Doom, Quake, Half-Life, Unreal, etc.) may have a preference for first-person
Good point, that would be me—Wolfenstein3D, Half Life 2, Far Cry.
If I recall correctly, the Deus Ex & Just Cause games were 3rd-P. I put a good few hours in there, but despite enjoying them a lot, they didn't make it to my annual replay list—dunno if that's due to 3rd-P or not..

if The Division was 1st person
Oh heck, that's 3rd-P too? Silly me for not checking—unless I got it as freebie, don't recall offhand.
Something to make sure I check from now on.
 
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One thing which I don't think is used often enough is the combination of both first and third person perspectives in a first-person shooter. Though I guess the only reason why you'd have a third person perspective in an otherwise first person game would be to have a cover system similarly to what was popularized in the mid-2000s.

For games with a high level of lethality (1-4 shots and you're dead), i feel like those types of games could work in a first-person perspective with a third person cover system.
 
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I much prefer first person for a variety of reasons. For one thing, if you are hiding behind something in some 3rd person games, you can see things that it looks like you can shoot, but you actually can't. This happens sometimes with looking through a doorway.

Overall, I prefer 1st person in any game because it's more immersive for me, even with melee games. But I'll happily play 3rd person games, too. It's just a preference. One perspective that I really don't get into is top-down unless it's a CRPG or strategy game. I associate those with arcade-style play, for one thing, and I don't really play that kind of game anymore, although I've enjoyed Hades and The Ascent quite a bit.
 

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