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Playing the game without FOV zoom bound


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Recently I began trying the game out without having the FOV bound to anything on my HOTAS so I'm constantly locked to the default. Frankly, I feel I enjoy the game even more this way. Looking back on all of my previously recorded footage constantly adjusting my FOV to zoom in on an enemy looks a bit too "gamey" now. Its not too hard to identify targets either with my resolution set to 1080p (I feel the game enlarges distant objects a bit for VR people) and my combat effectiveness is a little better now that I dont tunnel vision myself fully zoomed on my target in front of me. 

 

Has anyone else played this way or thought about trying it out?

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I'm on TIR and rarely use the adjustable zoom except for ground objects. I adjusted the seat position to be more centered than on the reticle for German AC and adjust the seat almost all the way back. I zoom in three clicks from the lowest setting as default. I feel it gives me good situational awareness, fairly historical seat position/cockpit view, and a decent amount of zoom on the gun sight. But I am probably more of an exception than the rule.

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I am not going to delete my zoom binding, sometimes its useful. But yes, I also decided to greatly reduce the use of it recently. Mainly because it makes me feel much more oriented in this virtual world. It makes it much easier to look around and then back to a certain point you are interested in.

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Yes but the reality is that in real life your brain is very good at concentrating on a target and not seeing anything else so it is almost like being zoomed in.   When the target is a small bunch of pixels on a PC screen your brain will not engage that 'prey focus' functionality.

Edited by 56RAF_Roblex
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I always interpreted zoom as an ingame analogue of your brain/eyes ability to focus onto an object.

 

The reality of pixels makes this impossible to do across a monitor screen. (maybe one day, when megapixel displays become commonplace) It is only fair enough then, that we'd have the facility of zooming in as a workaround.  

 

I use full zoom only to identify targets. Even for shooting, I prefer a half-way setting for most targets.  It does take away a massive lot from your awareness of your surroundings, which is why I have a convenient reset button which brings it back to full out.

 

With a 39" screen, even at an arm's length away from my eyes, the widest FoV (90° I think) serves well for the remaining 99% of the time

 

 

Scanning for targets is indeed best accomplished without zoom.  Your peripheral eyesight is better at catching movement than your central vision is.  Even a pixel sized object moving against a relatively steady background will easily draw your attention. 

 

You can complete a 360° scan around yourself with a four-stop head turn, then turn the plane upside down and repeat the process.  Except for blind spots, this should grant you a full scan of everything around you.  If there is any movement whatsoever, your eyes will instinctively pick up on it.

 

It really helps to keep your monitor clean.   Perception of movement is relative, so dirt on your screen will draw your eye crawling against the ground and sky beyond.   

 

I've been shot down by "dust motes on my six" several times, and got spooked by many a "109 on my screen" to my general embarrassment 

Edited by 19//Moach
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I have already read that it has to do with the field of view, just as when we take a picture of a big full Moon on the horizon (or wherever) and then get disappointed with the tiny white dot that appears in the photograph. As if like "where did that big white ball go?" This dichotomy between what the human eye sees and what the camera frames may explain why the simulators have zoom feature.

 

That is, it may be that without the use of zoom, the player is adding a hindrance to him / herself that has nothing to do with realism, just the opposite. Although I too like to use full field of view in general and zoom at will.

 

There are some articles on the internet explaining the reduced Moon effect on photographs, but I'm not sure how this is fixed / compensated in simulators or if this is true at all (for simulators). It just makes sense at the moment for me. 

Edited by SeaW0lf
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VR and TIR are completely different worlds when FOV is concerned. VR is more like a 3-monitor setup with huge displays all around and covering most of your natural field of vision, while a single display is like a picture frame through which you watch a miniaturized world.

 

The largest FOV available in game is 90-120 degrees (depending on pilot head setting), which largely corresponds to what you see with one eye.

 

When displayed on your monitor, this camera image covers only a fraction of your natural FOV.

 

Without zooming in, you'd need a 50" display seen from 50 cm to see things in the same size as in nature.

 

50" seen from 100 cm gives you half-size objects, 25" seen from 100 cm gives you quarter-size objects without zooming.

 

People with smaller displays are in a disadvantage as they have to apply more zoom to see objects in the same size (for identification), but this way they lose more FOV and SA.

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unfortunately in VR the zoom is a must have. All aircraft looks like a gray blob as there's no way to distinguish between dark green or dark gray, forget about any special markings. Even with zoom it's quite impossible. The only way the zoom helps is to identify the silhouette of the wing if you're lucky enough to catch the plane in a "view from top or above" type of a situation. Occasionally the profile of the aircraft is enough to make a correct identification (109's only really).

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unfortunately in VR the zoom is a must have. All aircraft looks like a gray blob as there's no way to distinguish between dark green or dark gray, forget about any special markings. Even with zoom it's quite impossible. The only way the zoom helps is to identify the silhouette of the wing if you're lucky enough to catch the plane in a "view from top or above" type of a situation. Occasionally the profile of the aircraft is enough to make a correct identification (109's only really).

 

Yep.  Unfortunately this probably won't be solved for another year or two (really hoping that Pimax can pull it off, but I'm waiting until I see it in release.  If they have a high enough resolution and it's not bogging down in low settings then they'll have my money).  I love VR but the lack of definition is a huge downfall in flight sims.  On the other hand it's pretty crazy how you can put on a headset and feel like you're in a plane.  Haven't played without it in, well every time IL-2 accidentally starts up outside of VR mode I restart it.

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I guess its easier for me to get away with it because i play with 1080p on a 42 inch TV about 4 feet away. I can identify air targets and it really feels like the Devs have the distant LOD meshes increase in size at around the 700-800 meter mark to help with either VR or that "hunting focus" thing mentioned above. That goes away when you zoom in on a target. The only ground targets I have trouble with are the artillery installations unless I see them firing. I figured that those would be harder to spot in real life so I would make a pass above the target area at a relatively low altitude. Having no ability to change FOV I'm not zooming in constantly to unrealistically narrow my situational awareness so I can spot incoming anti air much more easily.

All in all I guess its up to preference and I simply now prefer not moving my FOV no matter the justification of what zoom is meant to compensate for. 

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I can identify air targets and it really feels like the Devs have the distant LOD meshes increase in size at around the 700-800 meter mark to help with either VR or that "hunting focus" thing mentioned above.

 

yup, it's definitely implemented in the game. I noticed it when I was messing around with the graphics settings to get my VR run smoothly and at certain configuration the targets were jumping in sizes in front of my eyes, like for 1 second it's large then get reduced to 10% of its size, then back to enlarged, then back to small, at least for the air targets..

 

I can also tell that there's a scaling thing going on with the ground targets as well, because I can see them fairly well in VR. Now compared to Il2 in DCS the ground targets are freaking minuscule in VR, especially the tanks/bmp's, it was very frustrating hitting anything in DCS on the ground.

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The zoom feature is essential in a sim like this in order to approximate real life resolution and field of view. Since monitors are a fixed size and resolution, adjusting the zoom and the ability to do this constantly and easily is the only way to have any good awareness or perception. Playing without this just puts you at an incredible disadvantage and for no good reason.

Edited by SharpeXB
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On a 27 Inch monitor without tracking, Zoom a must for Id but then pull back some when engaging a target to get cockpit frame reference so I know where I am going and not Law Daring by mistake.

 

Eagerly awaiting Pimax 8K to give me decent visuals (probably have to build a super rig for it) as well as tracking.  At the moment, dog fighting is quite sad on my part especially online and Ground Pounding, well it is pretty hard to sight and Id targets.  Factories are ok though ).

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unfortunately in VR the zoom is a must have. All aircraft looks like a gray blob as there's no way to distinguish between dark green or dark gray, forget about any special markings. Even with zoom it's quite impossible. The only way the zoom helps is to identify the silhouette of the wing if you're lucky enough to catch the plane in a "view from top or above" type of a situation. Occasionally the profile of the aircraft is enough to make a correct identification (109's only really).

 

 

Interestingly, as things become more distant the colors fade into gray so, if the game is true to reality, color wouldn't be an easy way to ID anything at extreme ranges.

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I don't use the zoom as I find that the physical action of it feels much too gamely and breaks the immersion for me.

 

I used to use it frequently when playing on a monitor. But since playing in VR I don't use it at all as I feel it ruins the immersion for me too.

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Well with the new VR tech that promises to have a very high resolution zone where the eye is looking at zoom is becoming less important. Actually spotting and Id'ing could get a lot easier with this, also everything should look incredibly nice. I was not overwhelmed by current VR tech but I definitely want to give the 2nd gen a try. That will likely still need 2 years though at least. VR was super hyped but failed sales wise and now its in the phase of disillusion, the money isn't there at the moment.

Edited by 216th_Jordan
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I used to use it frequently when playing on a monitor. But since playing in VR I don't use it at all as I feel it ruins the immersion for me too.

 

I have VR Zoom bound to both a button press for momentary and a toggle switch, however I find I rarely use it. 

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The customers are there but most are sitting it out till the tech improves to make it worth while.

 

See how the next couple years pan out.  In short term happy to have 1080p upscaled to 4k but down the track, native 4k per eye would be the aim.  Goto to wait a bit for GPU's to deal with that at a decent constant frame rate.

 

Throw in hand tracking.  It'll be fun.

Well with the new VR tech that promises to have a very high resolution zone where the eye is looking at zoom is becoming less important. Actually spotting and Id'ing could get a lot easier with this, also everything should look incredibly nice. I was not overwhelmed by current VR tech but I definitely want to give the 2nd gen a try. That will likely still need 2 years though at least. VR was super hyped but failed sales wise and now its in the phase of disillusion, the money isn't there at the moment.

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  • 3 years later...

Hi, sorry to resurrect this old thread. I'm trying to play without zoom for realistic purposes, but I have a lot of trouble spotting the targets...
I'm realizing just now that playing that way is probably not more realistic, because when I'm on a flight in real life, I can see cars very easily at low altitude. Why is that? Is it related to the FOV? Which FOV is closer to our eyes?

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Playing with zero zoom is unrealistic. The cockpit looks more like a large railroad station concourse than a narrow aircraft cockpit. What I do when getting a new aircraft is, zoom in until it looks as if I am sitting in that cockpit and set that zoom. A good comparison is, how large does the grip of the control stick in the cockpit look compared to the grip of your joystick.

But this is always depending on how large your screen is and how far away from your eyes.

When flying I never use the zoom function anymore.

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23 minutes ago, zalteredbeastz said:

Which FOV is closer to our eyes?

 

This depends entirely on the size of your screen and the distance your eyes are from the screen.

However, you won't want to play IL2 at an FOV that is closest to your eyes FOV as it will look very narrow in for most screen sizes and eye distances.

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I've changed my seat and zoom from my original post above. I don't use zoom except to search for ground targets. I adjust my seat position all the way back against the armor now. I zoom all the way out then come back in 9 or 10 clicks (aircraft dependent) on the mouse wheel. I think there are 24 or 25 total click of zoom from all the way out to all the way in. I fly and fight from this same position. I don't zoom in or out during combat, ever. Spotting from this permanent position is still good as well.

 

* I still center up on the windscreen in German AC as I can't stand flying off center to be lined up with the gunsight. With TiR I just lean right when firing. It's habit now and I don't even notice/consciously do it.

** I am, admittedly, on a relatively large screen.

Edited by II/JG17_HerrMurf
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It’s not realistic at all to avoid using the zoom view. Unless you’re sitting in front of a 70” 16K monitor. Your view of a typical desktop sized monitor is way smaller than real life and the resolution, even in 4K is far short of real life acuity as well. Even VR players with a life sized view of the game need to enlarge the view so they can get the equivalent of real 20/20 eyesight. 
 

This should be abundantly obvious.... 

 

Now racing sim players sometimes set a 1:1 FOV because of how it affects the perception of speed. Just zoom in and out while taxiing and you’ll see. But they’re also probably using triple screens, don’t need to see distant objects or turn their head much or need a wider view than the track ahead. An FOV like this in a flight sim and on a single screen will just be dysfunctionally narrow. On a smallish monitor you’re going to be nearly full zoomed in. 
 

It’s amazing that this topic keeps coming up on flight sims. 🙄

Edited by SharpeXB
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I see. Now I understand finally why video games constantly use the zoom function. I always thought it was unrealistic to use the zoom and avoided to use it in all games, because I felt like a bionic man. Now I see the truth about eyes perception. I feel a little ashamed...

 

SharpeXB> My guess is that some of us (me included) are not yet very familiar with flight sims. The subject wasn't obvious for me since now.

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1 hour ago, II/JG17_HerrMurf said:

I've changed my seat and zoom from my original post above. I don't use zoom except to search for ground targets. I adjust my seat position all the way back against the armor now. I zoom all the way out then come back in 9 or 10 clicks (aircraft dependent) on the mouse wheel. I think there are 24 or 25 total click of zoom from all the way out to all the way in. I fly and fight from this same position. I don't zoom in or out during combat, ever. Spotting from this permanent position is still good as well.

 

Thanks a lot. Now it's very easy for me to spot the enemies! 👍

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No problem. It's my personal preference. Don't be afraid to experiment and fight the way you feel most comfortable/confident. There is no "one way" to do this.

 

This setup is a compromise but it gives me a good feel for the cockpit and exterior dimensions feel good as well. Spotting is still good but the FOV is still pretty wide. I also have good detail on my opponent when he is at convergence in the gunsight. It's taken me a while to get to this setup and I'm sure I will tinker with it here and there over the next several years. One click here or one click there, but it's working well for me at these settings.

Edited by II/JG17_HerrMurf
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1 hour ago, zalteredbeastz said:

SharpeXB> My guess is that some of us (me included) are not yet very familiar with flight sims. The subject wasn't obvious for me since now.

Well most games which aren’t “sims” don’t require you to see things at realistic distances. Like a “long range” shot with a sniper rifle in Battlefield V is 300 yards. Ok that’s actually short range for a real rifle but on a computer screen you couldn’t even see an opponent at a realistic rifle range. Sim shooter games like ARMA have a zoom view. Maybe that’s why this concept seems foreign to some gamers. But a flight sim without the zoom view would be unplayable (without icons which also aren’t realistic) since you would be unable to see distant targets at realistic distances. 

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7 hours ago, Yogiflight said:

Playing with zero zoom is unrealistic. The cockpit looks more like a large railroad station concourse than a narrow aircraft cockpit. What I do when getting a new aircraft is, zoom in until it looks as if I am sitting in that cockpit and set that zoom. A good comparison is, how large does the grip of the control stick in the cockpit look compared to the grip of your joystick.

But this is always depending on how large your screen is and how far away from your eyes.

When flying I never use the zoom function anymore.

 

Same here. I do my adjustments/zooms to the FOV the first time I'm in a new cockpit, save it and check if the Track IR profile still fits and that is it. I never have used any additional zoom function and wasn't aware there's one until the related update.

But I had nothing against a small binocular ( x4 max. and not somehow stabilized) for pilot and observers/gunners though.
 

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