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Field of View - what it is, why it matters, and how consoles differ from PCs

Risk Breaker

Member
Sep 23, 2010
5,796
1
0
One of the main reasons I can't stand playing Skyrim on consoles. Jesus Christ I can't see anything, make a FoV slider that reduces the draw distance or something.
 

peakish

Member
Jun 13, 2009
4,431
1
0
A bit OT, but what's the FOV in Xenoblade? I wanted to love taking in the environments but no matter how I zoomed the camera it always gave me an almost claustrophobic feeling. I've been thinking of blaming low FOV but not being good at judging stuff like that I never felt confident that I wasn't just making shit up...
 

dsk1210

Member
Sep 2, 2011
1,668
53
675
edinburgh
You know, i would really like to see a benchmark done regarding this, im almost positive it doesnt really affect framerates at all, if it does, its probably negligible. I know its rendering more on screen, but the difference is so little.

To the people that say they dont notice low FOVs, I recommend you never try to do your own experiments about FOV on PC, once you realize the effects, you wont be able to go back, playing games in the correct FOV is like night and day.


This man is correct, if you do not notice at the moment, dont go looking for it.

I have pratically ruined my console experience because of my pc gaming in the last few years, image quality, 60 fps, aa, fov, texture resolution all things that the consoles of this generation are struggling with and if i had never came to the dark side, i would have never have been any wiser and would still be able to enjoy some great console games with mediocre framerates and image quality.


Dave
 

TUROK

Member
Aug 27, 2010
4,880
942
910
Killzone 2 is the only game that has ever bothered me due to its low FOV. Despite this, I was still able to disregard this and enjoy the game immensely. And yeah, I do game on PC as well, and mess with the FOV settings to find the sweet spot for every game.
 

dLMN8R

Member
Dec 14, 2007
11,578
0
880
Weapon size and FOV are mostly unrelated. Look at Tribes Ascend - it has a configurable FOV in which the weapon size stays the same. The default weapon size is very big, and they offer a separate option to use smaller weapons.
 

Dead Man

Member
Aug 24, 2007
54,245
0
0
A tighter/narrower field of view can give the impression of being more cinematic and immersive. In film, 63 degrees is already considered "wide angle." The FOVs you've been talking about are much wider, which, at least in my opinion, makes them seem a little bit more flat and fake looking (which could just be due to my conditioning from film.) In my own experience, narrowing the field of view can help you feel like you're really "there." Obviously there's a trade off: a narrower FOV can prevent you from seeing game-critical information: that's why you're more likely to see a narrow FOV in a survival horror game (where the player character is supposed to have limited abilities.)

Third person games create unique difficulties because you have to deal with camera collision. You can make a third person game look really cool by narrowing the FOV and dollying the camera back to compensate. This helps to create a sense of immediacy, and still lets you see a lot of what you need to see. The problem is now the camera's location in physical space is very far back from your character, which starts creating huge problems when you are in a tight interior and the camera needs to avoid clipping through walls.

Something to think about with FOV's is that it isn't just about the field of view, it's about the sense of depth. Obviously if you're playing a fast paced, competitive FPS, being able to see as much critical information as possible may be your top priority, but in other types of games the developer may have other concerns.

I think for first person action games the ability to have something resembling peripheral vision trumps anything else for me. I understand your argument [I think :)], but the lack of peripheral vision kills fp games for me.
 

komojo

Neo Member
Sep 17, 2009
82
0
0
Am I the only one who doesn't like the field of view in Halo (Reach)? It normally doesn't bother me, but when I played Halo Reach I thought it seemed zoomed in just a bit too much. It makes everything appear more shallow somehow.

I also thought Kid Icarus: Uprising looked pretty promising until I saw a trailer that showed the camera zooming in and out to focus on something. That's a deal-breaker for me. That works in a normal game, but I can't see how that wouldn't look completely unnatural in stereoscopic 3D. I'm normally a fan of 3D effects, but that seems like the wrong way to do it.
 

Ricky_R

Member
Dec 28, 2010
11,969
1
0
Is it good or bad that I've never come to the point where FOV or any other technical aspect affects my experience?

I mean, ridiculous amounts of jaggies or massive slowdowns I do notice and it's unfortunate, but I hardy notice anything else. FOV is something that I don't even know when it's good or bad, etc.
 

Coxswain

Member
Feb 27, 2008
2,885
0
0
FOV is one of those things where, even if you don't specifically notice that you're dealing with a low FOV, it's almost definitely going to impact your play experience. If you've ever played an FPS where mid-to-long range combat and sniping felt really great, but close-range combat was frustrating, chances are the culprit was an FOV that was too low for you to maintain proper situational awareness at close ranges. Most people, not really trained to know what they're dealing with, end up just calling that "jank" or some other bogeyman term.
 

Sethos

Banned
Apr 9, 2009
18,139
0
0
Denmark
I'm starting to fear for the future of gaming when so many people find narrow FoVs, awful framerates and game filters / effects ( Blur, Piss, Bloom ) acceptable. The main reason why so many console games have a narrow FoV is a performance decision for sure. By upping the field of vision to normal number would probably mean they'd have to render almost twice as much on-screen compared to those insanely low FoVs you find in some console games.
 

Kritz

Banned
Jul 10, 2007
7,237
0
0
Australia, Tasmania, Hobart.
kritz.net
More than FOVs, I'm becoming more and more annoyed by LOLHUEG weapons taking up a quarter of the fucking screen. I don't see why your camera should start at the midway point of an assault rifle, and have it be considered "hip firing". At the point where I have a gun running parallel opposite my right ear, I really don't think there's a point where I can "aim down the sights".

And then the game gets a lovely 40 degree field of view, a gigantic HUD and a couple of pulsing +5000 scores where your reticle would be.
 

alf717

Member
Jan 11, 2010
3,050
67
900
Pennsylvania
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blZUao2jTGA

Here's a video that explains how it all works pretty well. I'm not personally affected by it, though I don't really play shooters nowadays.

That was really interesting to watch. Part 2 explained exactly why Half-Life 2 made me sick back in the day. Since the patch that added the FOV settings I no longer get sick while playing HL2 so long as the FOV is set to 90.
 

Oemenia

Banned
Jan 31, 2010
3,259
142
835
The Youtube videos really helped but Ive been confused on this issue for a while and was wondering if somebody could help.

Basically, whats the difference in FOVs from 4:3 to 16:9 (and other widescreen ARs). For example, when I got BioShock 2 for PC, the widescreen option in that was simply the 4:3 image cropped, but by increasing the FOV, I was able to get more on screen in the same ratio than before. My question is, when something is cropped to look wide, what is the difference in FOV?

Now for the really n00by sounding question, just what does resolution actually do. =P I mean yeah, it makes things look sharper when I increase it but cant that be handled by ingame options (besides just filtering, for example texture quality), but at the same time, doesnt it increase the amount you can see which is in escence FOV? We are hearing from some pros here that reducing the FOV does little to increase performance yet resolution seems to be capped or even sub-HD on many games this gen?
 

Ledsen

Member
Mar 25, 2007
12,259
2
0
Sweden
The Youtube videos really helped but Ive been confused on this issue for a while and was wondering if somebody could help.

Basically, whats the difference in FOVs from 4:3 to 16:9 (and other widescreen ARs). For example, when I got BioShock 2 for PC, the widescreen option in that was simply the 4:3 image cropped, but by increasing the FOV, I was able to get more on screen in the same ratio than before. My question is, when something is cropped to look wide, what is the difference in FOV?

Now for the really n00by sounding question, just what does resolution actually do. =P I mean yeah, it makes things look sharper when I increase it but cant that be handled by ingame options (besides just filtering, for example texture quality), but at the same time, doesnt it increase the amount you can see which is in escence FOV? We are hearing from some pros here that reducing the FOV does little to increase performance yet resolution seems to be capped or even sub-HD on many games this gen?

No, increasing resolution does not automatically increase FOV.
 

Brimstone

my reputation is Shadowruined
Jun 19, 2004
3,719
0
0
What would help are domed displays. Trying to project 3d data onto a 2d surface doesn't work well.








Why Sony, with all their projector technology, hasn't released something along these lines is odd.