How to go about implementing first person character that has a full 3rd person mesh?

I want to implement a player character for my first person game, but that has a full body mesh, not just arms, so that you can see your own legs and see your shadow and reflection etc.

I thought I’d better ask for some advice before I dive in, as I’ve never done it before. I know that a lot of shooters position the arms in an unrealistic way to make it look right in first person view, if I were to go down that route, wouldn’t it look strange when you spot your silhouette in-game, or does a first person view usually work on a full body mesh? I must also add that I’m not making a shooter, so I won’t be having the arms and gun in view at all times, I will however animate the arms as they player interacts with the game world, such as reaching out to push a button, or to pick up objects from the floor, etc.

Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated, this community hasn’t let me down yet!

It’s possible, but how would you set up your camera? For example in normal FPS shooters your camera is about level with the weapon, so about chest level. If you had the same but with a whole character you could look up and see your head from below which would be pretty strange. You could set up the camera to be at the real eye level which would be interesting but pretty different from most FPS shooters that I’ve seen.

I’ve actually gone ahead and tried it at normal eye level, for immersion purposes it works great, although yes the hands and arms are nowhere near the player’s normal view, but for my purposes it works, as I’m not really going further than a walking sim with object interaction.

If you want a true first person view with the full body mesh, I reccomend you using the third person template (instead of the first person one) and set up the camera so you’re looking through the character’s head.

I’ll add my two-cents here as I actually did this in one of my previous games.

My setup was as follows: The first person camera still had a set of just the one arm positioned correctly to make it look right in a first person view. Then I also added the third person proxy mesh (one that would be used to display to other players in the game) and placed it to so the camera was at about neck level, then just a bit forward.

I then applied a transparent material to the right arm so that it didn’t show up for the players view.
The first person arm doesn’t draw any shadows, but the full body mesh does, even the transparent part.

Here were the results:

and a video for movement.

Thanks for all of your thoughts on this everyone. I think I have it the way I want now, by basically playing with the positioning of the camera on a character mesh. I just need to animate a few actions with the arms and hands and see if they look right from the view I’ve chosen.

Thanks again for your input :slight_smile:

@Demeese when I make the mesh area transparent it doesn’t cast a shadow how did you go about that? @ Demeese

Theres an option on the mesh and in the material itself to cast shadows.