The Benefits of Directional FOV Interest Check and Discussion& Criticisms

Now, I know this has already been brought up before ages ago. And I’m not entirely sure how many people are interested in this, but I tried really hard to come up with a streamlined implementation of this that doesn’t feel TOO micromanagey. This also isn’t me telling the devs to please work on this. I made this more as a way to see how many people might be interested. So if you’re interested in being able to see in only one direction at a time without the use of artifacts or mutations please take a look.

Add a keybinding to “scan” surroundings.

Scan looks at surroundings but only a few tiles in direction you’re not facing.

Scan also works for car mirrors, scan bonus next to mirrors and glass.

Scan lets you peek over all objects when crouching that you would normally be able to see over when standing while giving a bonus to stealth.

Scan is automatic, you don’t need to scan each direction, and over every object you’re
crouched next to.

Scan costs few game ticks to prevent constant spamming.

Scan results persist only for the instance it’s used.

Auto scan settings that can be customized based on variables such as: more frequent as cost goes down, scan when hearing nearby noise, change facing direction on enemy spotted, don’t scan when enemy in sight, scan when waiting manually or doing a time consuming action.

Great for new stealth mechanics, and not just the player’s.

Scan benefits from perception and other applicable bonuses (Less cost, see more etc.)

Depending on these abilities and skills you might not always be able to spot a sneaking creature with cover bonuses or dark bonuses. Same goes for when you’re the one sneaking.

Gives an excuse for the camera to pan so you can see a much larger portion of your facing direction without having to zoom out entirely.

Increases tension of a situation, especially when surrounded or when you’re alone and hearing noises from all directions.

You cannot run backwards at full speed preventing you from knowing just how close the monster you’re running away from is to you at all times.

Allows for flags such as “Looking at”
if (!Looking_at)
{Make monster move}

Monsters and npcs are affected by directional view as well and can also use scan.

Steers the game more towards a hardcore, realistic, survival horror simulation and less towards a wish-fulfillment power fantasy.

The FOV could be set to a generous 180°.

Feel free to alter and edit, create a cons list because I only created a pros list, poke holes in my faulty arguments, and call me mean names in the comments.

Control Scheme:

Default Movement

Movement is fixed. 8 will aways be north, 2 will always be south etc. while changing your view.
Ctrl+movement to quickly look in a direction without moving.
Shift+movement to move with changing view. It’d be nice to be able to invert the functions and allow either the Ctrl or Shift function to be the default function. Or to swap shift and ctrl functions.

Contextual Movement:

Alternative NumPad Movement Bindings 1

7 Move Foward Left
8 Move Foward
9 Move Foward Right
4 Turn View Counter Clockwise
5 Wait
6 Turn View Clockwise
1 Move Backwards Left
2 Move Backwards
3 Move Backwards Right

Shift+7 Face Front Left
Shift+9 Face Front Right
Shift+4 Face Left
Shift+5 Scan
Shift+6 Face Right
Shift+1 Face Behind Left
Shift+2 Face Behind
Shift+3 Face Behind Right

Ctrl+4 Move Left
Ctrl+6 Move Right

Alternative NumPad Movement Bindings 2

7 Turn 45° Counter Clockwise
8 Move Foward
9 Turn 45° Clockwise
4 Turn 90° Counter Clockwise
5 Wait
6 Turn 90° Clockwise
1 Turn 135° Counter Clockwise
2 Turn 180°
3 Turn 135° Clockwise

Shift+7 Move Foward Left
Shift+8 Move Foward
Shift+9 Move Foward Right
Shift+4 Move Left
Shift+5 Scan
Shift+6 Move Right
Shift+1 Move Backwards Left
Shift+2 Move Backwards
Shift+3 Move Backwards Right

Adressing some concerns+more notes:

“Issues with too many key presses?”

Much like in real life, strafing is something that doesn’t see much use outside of aiming in games. There’s other very specific uses but it’s mainly just a Quality of Life change that would inevitably be asked for if this feature were to ever be implemented. There’s no need for your hands to reach the speed of light to constantly switch between the movement modes. It might be even better to have the modifier keys act as toggles by default rather than having to be held down. Allowing view locking with the mouse would also be great for people who like mouses. Changing Mobile keybindings to default for PC might potentially be better?

Auto Scan also circumvents the need to manually check every direction as it checks every direction at once without your input.
The main changes to gameplay come from the restricted view, not the movement.

“But if auto scan just checks every surrounding at once, what even is the point of this feature?”

Scanning isn’t a rigid ability. It is affected by many game values both internal and external to the player. At perception 8, your character might have no problem keeping aware of his surroundings, you might not even see a difference from a Cataclysm without this feature. But what if you’re under an effect that lowers your Perception to 4? 2? What about your dexterity, what if you suffered a penalty trying to fight an enemy you’re not facing towarda at lower combat and dodging levels.
An advanced character might have no difficulties viewing his surroundings, while reacting appropriately to the two or three zombies coming from different directions, but how will a lower level character fare? And even a higher level character with incredibly good martial arts and weapon arts might not fare so well when completely surrounded, fighting enemies from all directions at once. If scanning were to give you a bonus to fighting and dodging for all enemies within attack range but tire you out a bit, what would happen if you were trying to fight enemies from all fronts. Scanning would no longer take such a small toll.

Sneaking could also apply a decent buff to scanning. If varying movement speeds are also added, then penalties and buffs based on how fast you’re moving could also be implemented. Running full sprint would definitely give you a penalty not only trying to look at things behind you but might even prevent you from seeing the obvious and would lower your perception.

Scanning also sees use in manual activation which can increase the effectiveness of searching for traps near you and in front of you as well as hidden enemies, and other things that seem out of place.

Scanning isn’t free use. At lower levels, it uses turns and tires you out. It’s negligible but only when scanning is automatic and optimized, scanning manually will quickly add up and tire you even faster. A good method to prevent people from spamming scanning. And if there’s ever a fully fleshed out mental stress system, this would fit quite well.

3D field of view is something that might inevitably see full implementation. Allowing scan to affect Z levels would pair quite well.

“Having to get scanning up everytime will be such a boring meta”

Scanning also isn’t something that all characters are just bad at. Having trained professionals start with higher levels, and having some other professions start at medium levels would mean that it wouldn’t be much of a micromanagement issue until you’re in an extremely dangerous situation where every turn counts, or having just left said situation in tatters and having to find safety while severly handicapped unable to stay aware of your surroundings.
Experienced veterans might walk away from a fight, they would’ve previously had no trouble getting away from, beaten within an inch of their life. Newer players will learn to fear what it’s like to fight multiple enemies. Why? Because taking damage is much more dangerous as it hampers your ability to be fully aware of your surroundings (due to pain penalites) after a difficult battle, prolonging the difficulty until you get to a safe zone.

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This feels like it would make playing on mobile really hard due to the CTRL and SHIFT combo keybinds.

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Thanks for your feedback. I know what you mean, I’ve actually thought about this before.

We can completely forgo the ctrl combo keybind as a toggleable setting and have the default movement being quick look.

Basically moving the joystick once will cause you to face in the direction you pressed. Moving it in the same direction again will cause to actually move this time. So you can only move where you look unless you use Shift to strafe. And I’m aware not all android devices have shift in their virtual keyboards, so Shift should be able to be changed to any other keybind and should work as a toggle instead of having to be held down. For example, setting it to an unused keybind and then toggling that keybind on and off. The android version of the game also has a nifty “Keep last keybinds used on the quicklist” setting which makes it easier to toggle.
(Edit, accidentally used a formatting symbol)

I brought up this feature years ago, and think it’s very well implemented in UnReal World (I recommend you check that out because I think the control scheme is perfect). However I would be VERY strongly against additional keypresses to manually scan.

First of all, you already have a keypress in the form of peeking ‘X’, so any expansion of your character’s ability to scan/peek/view should probably just build on that.

I think automatic ‘scanning’ could have very interesting strategic possibilities. For example, your view cone might narrow and get ‘stuck’ towards enemies when you’re in a stressful fight. It might also dovetail off the pain mechanism which would have added penalties in the form of lower scanning potential because you’re too distracted. The scanning ability could also be automatically affected just by how many enemies are nearby, even if in the distance (I gather it’s hard to pay attention with a horde of zombies in front of you). I’d like to see added benefits of keeping your character happy and stress-free in the form of higher environmental awareness. It could also play into eyes encumbrance too.