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In real warfare, players are allowed to aim at something,
but turn their heads to look at something else. Also, if a
person wants to dual-wield weapons, he is able to aim
them in two different directions. He is also able to yell at
his team mates or enemy. This is technically feasible in
games, but the problem lies in controlling the second
view and tracking facial expressions. I propose 2
technologies to be married to FPS games in order to bring
these real-life options to the games.
The first technology allows the user to allow main player
view to be oriented through the movement of the gamer's
head. Triangulation of tracked points is used to constantly
track the orientation of the user while he uses his mouse to
orient his weapon. This allows for a more flexible playing
field, as players are able to be firing in one direction,
while looking in another. This technology (theoretically)
doesn't need any additional hardware except for a
webcam, although the use of glasses or other
items/markings would allow for smoother tracking head
orientation. The player's head would track on 3 axes,
allowing for a tilting effect of the entire screen. The
screen is not the only thing animated. The actual in-game
player's head also turns with these turns, portraying actual
head movements. This would improve realism of the
game, as well as the game play. Another option for this
(and this would take some getting used to, but going pro
would mean something totally more awesome) is to allow
for dual-wielding players to be firing in 2 different
directions. Players could allow, with the touch of a
button, their head view to stay with the main view, while
they control the movement of their secondary weapon with
The second technology tracks the facial expressions of
players. As orientation can be tracked through the first
technology, the technology will know exactly where your
eyes, eyebrows and mouth are. The technology will then
measure size and orientation of the your eyes, eyebrows
and mouth to create a representation of these features in
the game. Seeing the facial expressions that players
portray will improve the realism of the game, being able
to see players surprised as you frag them and being able
to, non-verbally, portray your intentions to your
teammates. Player mouth movements can them be
coupled with VOIP programs to add another sense of
Benefits: Added in-game realism, another gameplay
dimension, better player collaboration/communication.
Drawbacks: May take some time to get used to, it's all
theoretical at this point. Additional hardware could give
an edge to more dedicated players.
A DIY-friendly effort to accompish some of these things. [Spacecoyote, Sep 17 2010]
Head tracking system. [5th Earth, Sep 23 2010]
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||Something similar exists in some vehicle-based games, where one joystick/keypad would control movement/orientation of the vehicle and another the orientation of the weaponry. Necessary if you want to strafe properly while running like hell at a tangent.
||//dual wielding// in that case you'd more want two joysticks for weapons and use your head or feet or something to control movement.
||//facial expression// well known to want-to-exist. Back around the turn of the century, Matrox graphics incorporated a hardware feature into their G550 (business) series called "headcasting" which is the backend of the avatar'ing programme you envision. Nobody knows why they did it, least of all Matrox.
||Sooo.. nobody's done it right yet? And by right I
mean got the technology to appeal to gamers? Not
speaking of the functionality itself.
||Head tracking is baked. See link.
||At some point, it must be simpler to just go there for real.
||Sooo, where's your link for my head-tracking FPS
with the functionality that I have listed?