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Valdor

Wurm in 3rd Person?

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In the last Valrei International, Retro formally introduced the 3D character mechanic that is supposed to be soon enabled in Wurm Online. I wanted to address this topic ever since I learned of this possibility and this is as good a time as any.

 

One of the factors that attracted me to Wurm the most was the fact that the entire game is played in first person. First person play adds both greater immersion and greater difficulty to the game. Being in first person, I always felt connected to the land and events around me, as if I was actually in that world. There is magic to the first person play, because as much as it limits you to a certain perspective, this is a perspective that we are experience our reality in and therefore we feel more connected to it and present in it. Things experienced in first person have a greater realism to us, even in a game. In the games with third person view, I always feel detached from both my character and the world around him. It's as if I was just watching some animated toon perform various actions, but it wasn't really me.

 

This immersion - to me at least - is what makes Wurm magic. It's perhaps its most important element.

 

In addition to the immersion, first person play brings with it both challenge and a degree of difficulty. Take combat, for example. While Wurm combat may be simplistic, it can be quite deadly. In first person, you need to have your head on a swivel and look around when crossing a troll den. Just like in real life, when crossing a dangerous alley. In third person, you can simply zoom out far enough and see your surroundings from above. Likewise, when engaging someone or something in first person view, you are always vulnerable to being attacked from behind without you knowing it, or having someone or something sneak upon you from the side. It's up to you to position yourself in a defensive way, or keep scanning around to ensure you are not being rear ended. This brings a level of challenge and danger to combat. In third person view, however, all this goes away, because wherever you are, you just have to zoom out of your character and have both his or her back and sides covered. This removes any remaining strategy from our combat... and since our combat is on a simple end of the spectrum already (as far as the player mechanics are concerned), it removes the real remaining combat challenge.

 

There are other implications of 3D, for instance the ability to look at objects and angles that you normally wouldn't be able to. If I want to see what is on the second level of the decaying house which still has its bottom walls up, or what is inside a walled deed, I need to build a ramp or find a hill or other leverage to do so. With 3D, I just zoom up and angle my camera, to glance where my character is not really able to see. If I want to look around the corner of a building, to see if the path is clear, I right now have to do what I do in real life - sneak to that corner and peek around it. In 3D, I just get close enough but still safely away and angle my camera to get a view my character doesn't really have. This is especially big for PvP.

 

Now, I am perfectly aware that when 3D is introduced, the first person view won't go away. I know that the ability to stay in first person will be there. But that's just it. Have you always been able to stick to your conviction of consistently taking several flights of stairs to your destination, when elevators are available? When everyone else is using 3D person, I will eventually too... no matter how disciplined or nostalgic I may resolve myself to be.

 

To me, first person Wurm was what made the world magical. Will 3D water it down to the level of all the other fast paced games that are less concerned with immersion? I guess I will have to wait and see. But I won't lie... my heart bleeds for this change. I somehow can't get over it. 

 

I realize that my sentiment is not shared vastly through the game. Or is it? How do you feel about this change? I don't have access to the test server currently, but some have already seen it there. How big is the change? From my experience with such things in different games, it won't be a small "let's see what my character looks like in 3D" mechanic. It will be the change to the way we do things.

 

Thoughts?

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I share your feelings, I really like to be in 1st person in Wurm.

I've just hopped over to test to check the 3rd person view. It *seems* the camera is clever enough to not clip through walls, it simply gets outside of the wall if I try to get through it, even to the point dropping back in 1st person view. Same with floors above. We'll see how well it will work at awkward and complex scenarios but still better than what I expected. On the combat - yes I can roll the camera around and that way see what's behind me and still facing my main opponent, this is a minus for me. The max distance from yourself is not high so you won't get a wide angle picture of your surroundings, surprise attack may still happen if you put the camera above your head I suppose. That is a minor plus.

Is 3rd person view needed? Not for me, I feel more comfortable and immersed with forced 1st person view. I do understand the possible need of 3rd person view to attract crowds used to it. So... who knows? I'm more concerned about the -still unknown- overhaul of the UI, I will hate if I need to use the mouse for my actions...

Edited by Jaz
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I really feel you're overthinking this. It's an optional camera angle that accomplishes nothing that wasn't already possible through other means. Trying to see if a forest is clear of mobs? Move your mouse around and look for outlines. Need to know if another mob just approached during a fight? Read the combat log, or turn your character quickly. The camera has appropriate limitations to prevent most abuse, and can likely be straight up disable in PvP if it proves too much of an issue. 

 

It provides a nice breath of fresh air in crowded and cramped areas, and allows us to see our characters outside of a tiny window. I understand the first person immersion aspect but you've got to consider that it's an optional QoL addition. No one is forced to use it, but those who want to will finally be able to.

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I totally understand the concern and I shared it for a while - first person perspective has always been an innate part of Wurm, and it's contributed plenty to the immersion. However TPP is a very long and often requested feature and the lack of it is a dealbreaker for many potential players, so we felt it was a necessary addition.

 

I think you'll like where we ended up with third person though - the perspective provides a bit of freedom but the zoom out distance is not even close to what you'd see in WoW and such, which helps to not make the first person mode irrelevant, tactical advantage wise. Additionally it's as Jaz says, you can't really peek much through walls as it detects that they should obstruct your view.

 

It's still quite immersive really, and I don't think this addition means everyone will switch to third person exclusively - also swapping back and forth between the camera modes is quick enough to use both perspectives interchangeably.

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I often lack a sense of depth perspective when decorating in first person.

So I look forward to check out the 3rd person view.

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I like the idea of third porson, a thing I have missed in wurm for many years, like jump I like to be able to jump as well, over low fences and so on.
The combat in this game is rely simple, and do not make any difference what so ever if you have third porson, with zooming out, well let us see how far we can zoom out, and when it comes to realistic, the real world we don't have tunnel sight, make a friend hold hes hands 2 meters in front of you, then let him walk to the side, and then tell when you cant see hes hands no more.

We are actually able to look backwards, or well from the sides behind us.
Af effecked a lot of game develperes have ben trying to get in to the game, but realy only is possible with third porson, or to day with VR in Wurm, I wud think that wud be cool XD

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c'mon if it's just a camera switch.. don't use it if you don't like it.. "problem" solved.

 

3rd person will force you to watch your char's animations whenever you do something... which is constantly..... I'd expect polishing of that at some point.. or adding new.. once this opens.. lets you see more than the group... lets you see yourself and the group... being part of it.. 3rd person view wont be that bad addition as you describe it.

 

hopefully somewhere along the way.. emotes get a revamp also.. it's going to put the social interaction at another level

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just been on test server, couldnt figure out how to switch to 3rd person view, any tips?

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2 hours ago, Sin said:

just been on test server, couldnt figure out how to switch to 3rd person view, any tips?

lmb + scroll wheel

can also use v if that's set as your "centre view" still

Edited by Madnath
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Also default keybinds are on numeric - and = ... or + ? I don't remember now.

 

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I like 3rd person as an option. It's actually more realistic in some ways. It gives you better perception of your surroundings, which more resembles your real life perception. If someone comes into your room or walks behind you, normally you can hear it or even see it in your peripheral vision, in Wurm 1st person you see only what is right in front of you. In some situations it's a bit too good though, for example if someone is sneaking up on you, maybe in RL you wouldn't have noticed. But the down side to 3rd person is that you loose some long range vision, so I think the modes complements each other quite well. 

 

Also, it's optional, so if you don't like it just don't use it. If someone else uses 3rd person, I don't see how that would break your playing experience really. Unless maybe in some rare PvP case. 

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Thanks for responses, folks. I appreciate your feedback.

 

Well, if - as Samool said - third person view is absolutely necessary to move the game forward, then who am I to stand in the way of progress. And it looks like consideration was taken to make it more of a fun feature, rather than any form of game-play changing alteration. I'll adjust in no time, I am sure. And of course - it's all optional, so nothing is really going away. Looking forward to see what you have done with this new feature.

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