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FPS Issues

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For those of you that are sick of RPGs, here''s a post on action games (first person shooters specifically.) FPS games currently have a few problems that are pretty major, some are easily solvable, others are, well maybe not. Control scheme In all modern first person shooters, your view is linked to where you are shooting. Your gun might as well be attached to your head. Is there a good way to allow players to shoot away from where they are looking, is it necessary? Maybe your mouse should control your gun while firing, and your view while you''re not? Or maybe your mouse should move your aim small amounts without moving your viewpoint until it''s necessary (which is more aesthetic then a gameplay issue, because it doesn''t allow for blind firing.) Also is there a decent way to target multiple enemies? FOV One of the biggest problems in 3D action games is the lack of peripheral vision (tunnel vision.) If you change the FOV too much on current monitors it creates distortion. Is there a way to fix this with current display technology? (Not using CAVES, curved monitors, etc.) What about widescreen? Although your vertical vision would still be limited, it would increase your side vision. MELEE IMHO, melee combat has sucked in all first person shooters. I think that melee combat could be a viable and exciting alternative to standard ranged combat, not just a last resort. Switching to 3rd person is a cop-out, btw. How about a close range autoaim (for melee only), along with the ability to block\parry. It may work... MOVEMENT I want to see really crazy acrobatics in a FPS. One of the problems with FPS games is that the characters are way too stiff. They never fall over (except when they die), even in situations where they''re clearly off balance. I also believe that the current system could be more intuitive. Well... those are my issues with modern action games. Post any comments or additions.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I don''t think the ability to shoot independantly from your vision is going to come anytime soon. We just don''t have enough hands to manage all these controls. Making it so that your mouse switched over to controlling your gun while shooting would be a nightmare and wouldn''t offer any real advantage.

Targeting multiple enemies isn''t going to happen either, at least not until they make a system for targeting one enemy. Most fps games don''t let you target an enemy specifically, they just let you aim in a direction.


FOV
"One of the biggest problems in 3D action games is the lack of peripheral vision"

Hmm yeah, maybe they could devote half an inch on the sides of your screen as sort of very compressed versions of what is off to your left and right

melee combat is too risky, maybe if while holding a melee weapon it also shielded you it would become more popular.

"I want to see really crazy acrobatics in a FPS."

This is something that could add a lot, but I don''t think we have a good enough control scheme with just mouse and keyboard. Maybe a few things could be added. Doom didn''t have crouching or jumping and they found keys for them. So I think we might see a little of this but not totally.

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Well about the movement and acrobatics, I think it''s possible to do it with current standard devices if you have a smart enough interface. The problem is that a badly designed "smart" interface just ends up being annoying as hell.

And in the post I mentioned ideas about how to make melee less risky. One of the problems with melee is aiming at such a close range. I character can run behind you, and you won''t be able to turn around soon enough (hence the close range autoaim.) When it comes to defense, I would introduce some kind of parry or block.

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Dude, go play ONI!
Of course, I s''pose that''s technically a TPS, not an FPS, but the combat system rocked! (at least IMO)
...and you could do some pretty kewl jumps and such...
...and it placed a very high emphasis on HTH combat...
...and you could block

also, have you ever played Recoil? that had totally independant movement/view angle and turret/fire angle... and did the "only move when we hit the sides of the screen" thing...

I doubt we''re ever going to see much in the way of targetting multiple enemies... after all, what''s going to shoot at them?

as for FOV, there''s a good reason to make sure your game is either a mecha sim (i.e. your char is in some kind of battle suit or ship) and/or has a very small visor in his/her helmet

Control won''t get much better until we have VR suits... it''s just too much to think of at once

--Tr][aD--

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I see no way to pull off your "free-aim" of gun idea without using Virtual Reality. Your idea
needs 3 hands: 1 for movement(keyboard), 1 for free-looking(mouse), and another for free-aiming(??).
The only way I see is to put a tracking device on the head for free-look. Then you can
use the mouse for free-aiming. Unfortunately, you cant really use a head tracker on a normal
display, ie you turn your head and you dont see screen any more. Need VR for that tricky stuff.

HOWEVER, I have been working like a mad scientist on a new control device as we speak that will
solve this problem of looking around without turning your head.....its called the TONGUE TRACKER.
You have excellent control of that thing in your mouth plus it has plenty of muscle. Why not put it to use!?

What you think of my million dollar idea?



Visit my Webpage and Project: LoreQuest

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Yes, Triad, I have played Oni (well at least the demo) and I think that the fighting system kicks ass. The problem with extending the system to first person is once again a vision one. In Oni, because of the position of the camera, you can see more then you would if it was an FPS... I don''t know, is there anyway to play the game in first person, maybe I''m completely wrong about the vision and it would still be playable?

For blind firing, gun cams could be an option, especially considering the military is developing actually guns with them. It would be similar to the rear-view thing in system shock, except the PIP view would be from your gun''s viewpoint instead of yours.

What about computer vision (just with simple webcams.) People have created some demos that use webcams as an interface, and Carmack was doing research in using them in games. Maybe this could help us get around some of the rescrictions in the current mouse\keyboard setting.

Btw, try to consider current, widely used devices for input, not super-expensive\experimental or fantasy technology.

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imo the best solution is comprimise. 1st person for guns/ranged, 3rd person for melee. as for no look shooting, maybe a key that locks a target, so you can look elsewhere while you fire. and autoaim for goldeneye and others does constitute targeting to my mind. as for multiple targets, some ideas come to mind, but none of them good
check out my site for more of my ideas if yer bored
http://www.angelfire.com/scifi/satur9/index.html

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Ugh... switching to 3rd person is a cop-out in my opinion. Basically people switch to thrid person because the interfaces for fighting in 3rd person have already been well planned out, while the interfaces in 1st person haven''t. Another reason for switching to 3rd person is because it''s easier to see what you''re doing. I think a lot of this is solvable in first person if we switch from the "floating gun" view to drawing the characters whole body (still in first person.)

Why the push for first person melee? I think that if properly done it will be a lot more realistic feeling then any thrid person game could ever be.

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As for aerobatics, if you have Unreal Tourney, go check out the MatrixMoves mutator, though it only supports the out-of-the-box models + the more common custom ones, it still has a pretty good system for aerobatics. It overrides UT''s natural "double-tap" dodging and instead adds in rolls, wall-running, double-jumping, mid-air freezing, and a load of other cool stuff. All rolls/flips are basically double-tapping a movement key in the desired direction.

As for the ''need'' for more first-person fighters, I just don''t think its plausible at this time, give it a few years for the technology to develop and *maybe*. You see the basic problem stems from such: when somebody plays Unreal, or Quake, or anything else, they are not really *SEEING* in true depth-perception. We are viewing a 3d environment on a 2d display. We can''t easily judge our distance from an enemy who is in-close because we are only seeing in 2d. When we view the real-world, we are comparing information from two distinct angles. And this also includes the peripheral vision problem.

I''ve always wanted to try to render a game in *real* vision, not the way things are half-assedly done today with extra weapon models for every different view. You actually *SEE* through your player-model''s eyes. You actually *see* your gun as you would viewing it from your avatar''s eyes. No more of this crap where in say, Counterstrike, where everything seems to be fired from the hip, pistols included. Just observe, some time, how a model *looks* like he''s holding a rifle/pistol, then realize what the player is actually seeing.
Now the only game/mod I really know that even attempts to fix this, at least a little bit, is Infiltration for UT. No crosshairs, and to get any accuracy, you have to secondary-fire, which actually brings the gun up and lets you view through its open sight.

Oh, well, my mind is beginning to wander, I''ll leave it at that.

-Ryan "Run_The_Shadows"
-Run_The_Shadows@excite.com
"Doubt Everything. Find your own light." -Dying words of Gautama

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I''m only going to discuss aiming here...

You guys seem to forget that this is intuitive for a big part. Did any of your ever tried some real-life swordfighting? Things go on auto-pilot. When someone attacks you, your sword immediatly tries to block it. Your skill determines if your attempt succeeds...

Or take laser-gaming. You walk around, look around, and just about hold your gun in two hands. But, for a change, try to remember *how* you play. I tried, and noticed the following things. As soon as I turned my head left, I aimed my gun somewhat in the same direction.

Aiming just about goes automaticly. I more or less ''choose'' a target, and shoot. Even when he/she isn''t centered in my view. However, the closer to the center, the more accurate my shots ( ). Also, when I see something in the corner of my eye, I just look into that direction immediatly. Without thinking about it. It just *happens*.

I do not need controls to do this. I need a smart computer! :p

Ronin

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I agree whole heartedly with Run_The_Shadows about seeing from your avatar''s eyes instead of that stupid canned gun model floating at the bottom of the screen. The big problem with shooting from the shoulder instead of the hip is your gun and arm is going to take up 3/4 of the screen. I love that idea about raising/lowering the gun, though. Just like Blackthorne. There could be 2 modes of play: gun raised and gun lowered. You''d have to lower your gun to perform actions like climb ladders, open doors, reload, etc. Also, if you could see your body, you could have it so that you checked your ammo when you looked straight down. You could also check for wounds too, I guess.

And also, about ladders, have our avatar actually grab on to the damn ladder so we know when we''re attached to it and when we''re going to fall. At least have a little icon pop up saying we''re on the ladder. Serenity now...

I don''t like that free aiming idea, though. Just look at SWAT guys on TV (not Dark Angel, though, they suck) or in the movies. They have their guns glued to their shoulder and point them wherever they look.

Oh, and maybe the ''use'' key could double as a melee attack when you''re facing an enemy. A quick pistol whip without having to switch weapons. Also, when the enemy''s back is turned to you, you could grab him around the neck and use him as a shield.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
ever play vigilance (I think that''s what it was), published by.. Sierra, I think? you moved with the arrow keys and aimed with the mouse.. took a little getting used to, but ended up pretty neat. 3rd person..

-jipe

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You''ll need a different input device.

Sure, it''s been attempted and never really caught on (SpaceOrb 360, SideWinder DualStrike - not a bad pad, btw), but to be able to move and aim separately, you''ll need to furnish the player with the ability to control motion with one hand (note hand , not fingers) and aiming with the other, still leaving the fingers free for triggers.

Which brings us to another point: many of the structural limitations of today''s games are a function of the phyiscal properties of the hardware they run on - such as the projective limitation of a monitor as opposed to a VR helmet/glasses.

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quote:

In all modern first person shooters, your view is linked to where you are shooting. Your gun might as well be attached to your head. Is there a good way to allow players to shoot away from where they are looking, is it necessary?



I was just thinking about this a few days ago while playing q3a, but it occurred to me that it might not be particularly useful. Aiming away from facing worked fine in Tomb Raider, but only because the weapon automatically locked on to a target. In Quake 3 Arena, for example, making your weapon automatically target an opponent would take out an element of the game--being able to pick and choose your targets according to your playing style.

quote:

ever play vigilance (I think that''s what it was), published by.. Sierra, I think? you moved with the arrow keys and aimed with the mouse.. took a little getting used to, but ended up pretty neat.


I hated that system. It was too confusing to keep track of everything that was going on.

quote:

I don''t think the ability to shoot independantly from your vision is going to come anytime soon. We just don''t have enough hands to manage all these controls.


This isn''t necessarily true. Given that many FPS players use A/S/D/W rather than the arrow keys, you can play with a system somewhat similar to that of Descent--Q and E could be configured as the look around keys, like they were configured as the roll keys for Descent.
--


WNDCLASSEX Reality;
...
...
Reality.lpfnWndProc=ComputerGames;
...
...
RegisterClassEx(&Reality);


Unable to register Reality...what''s wrong?
---------
Dan Upton
Lead Designer
WolfHeart Software

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And, a different issue that I didn't see discussed yet:
Speed
This goes in two forms: general game speed, and character speed.

Game Speed
Not necessarily a big issue I guess, since every player will be running at the same speed, but the first time I played Unreal, I had trouble adjusting to the fact that it was just...too slow for my tastes. Character movement in general was entirely too slow.

Character Speed
This struck me a day or so ago as I was play Q3:A with a downloaded model of Sonic. Here's something that, in character, moves incredibly fast, but yet he's stuck at the same speed as all the other characters. And Angel and Lucy--you can't tell me that they can move as nimbly as Mynx or some of the other characters. And Bones should fall faster--after all, he has less air resistance. Am I the only one that thinks there should be at least some difference in the characters besides just their models? The larger characters have a larger hit zone, but is that it? Since teams have to program stuff to go along with the models, why not put a space in the engine that would allow you to alter attributes for each model--make bigger models more resilient to certain damges and slower, and make smaller models quicker, but possibly with less health.

Edit: Apparently [u]...[/u] doesn't work.

Edited by - draqza on July 2, 2001 6:34:50 PM

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