[[quoteright:350:[[VideoGame/SuperMario64 http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/super_mario_64_camera_manual_1775.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:View it your way!]]

The ability to rotate the camera independently around the player character in a third person 3D video game. The purpose is to allow the camera to face any direction the player chooses, no matter where the PC is facing. This flexibility has made it one of the most popular camera controls implemented to avoid CameraScrew (especially since it can just be [[StockControlSettings mapped]] to [[UsefulNotes/GeneralGamingGamepads the shoulder buttons or second analog stick]]).

It isn't perfect, though. It's not as fast as CameraCentering (why some games include both controls), and it's not always a good idea to rely too much on it, especially if the level design doesn't take these factors into account.

There are four main variations of rotating (depending on control availability or designer choices):
* '''"Rotation Alone":''' Rotating circularly along the X-axis alone. Often all that is needed when a game is mostly on a flat plane or with limited platforming.
* '''"Rotation And Tilt":''' Rotating along the X-axis and tilting along the Y-axis. This is similar to the controls in a FirstPersonShooter, and in fact some {{Third Person Shooter}}s allow the player to move freely while using this control to aim the camera. But for most games, it's just to allow the player more viewing angles.
** The reason full circular tilting along the Y-axis isn't done is that it could go at angles that themselves would cause CameraScrew. Sometimes it's also used to prevent 'unfortunate' angles on female characters.
* '''"Rotation And Zoom":''' Rotating along the X-axis and zooming in and out along the Y-axis. This allows more visibility among open spaces, while using the close view in tight spaces. In some games, zooming in enough turns into a FreelookButton. This type is most common among Creator/{{Nintendo}} games.
* '''"Rotation, Tilt, And Zoom":''' Including all three forms can be very useful in certain games, such as strategy games where the field and terrain necessitate every possible view. This shows up a lot in {{Strategy RPG}}s.

Which button turns what direction depends on the setup of the game. Sometimes turning along the X-axis means pressing right will the camera counterclockwise, and left clockwise. The opposite in a similar manner to turning with an FPS. Unfortunately, not all games state which rotation direction is "standard" and inverted". Tilting on the Y-axis is also standard and inverted, with the latter being like a flight stick. Some games let you choose between standard and inverted controls. Games that don't can often lead to DamnYouMuscleMemory.

Also, [[StockControlSettings which buttons are used]] will, of course, vary depending on the games and controller. The standards are the shoulder buttons or right analog stick for gamepads, and the mouse or Q and E keys for PC games.

Compare OrbitalShot (rotation used in movies), AlwaysOverTheShoulder (the camera rotates with the player).

Contrast FixedCamera.


[[folder: Platformer ]]

* ''VideoGame/SuperMario64'' uses "Rotation And Zoom", but is the TropeMaker for all of them, as the Guinness Book Of World Records has acknowledged it as the first game to feature a controllable camera.
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioSunshine'' also uses "Rotation And Zoom".
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy'' has "Rotation Alone" in areas where the camera isn't fixed.
* The first ''VideoGame/SpyroTheDragon'' game did "Rotation Alone" with two of the shoulder buttons, and the other two were strafing (by way of rolling). But for some reason, the next two did rotation for the other two shoulder buttons as well. Later games did "Rotation And Tilt" or "Rotation And Zoom".
* ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClank'' games use "Rotation And Tilt" when in the "Third Person" camera mode.
* ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure''
** ''VideoGame/SonicHeroes'' includes both this and shoulder camera rotation.
* ''VideoGame/EpicMickey'' uses "Rotation And Tilt".


[[folder: RPG ]]

* The ''KingdomHearts'' games are all over the place.
** ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts'' and ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsBirthBySleep'' were "Rotation Alone".
** ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII'' is "Rotation And Tilt".
** ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts358DaysOver2'' used the shoulder buttons for either "Rotation Alone" or strictly CameraCentering (depending on the options you chose), but the touch screen could always be used for "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/WildARMs2'' and ''VideoGame/WildARMs3'' are "Rotation Alone".
* The ''Franchise/{{Grandia}}'' games use "Rotation Alone", at least the main series games.
* ''VideoGame/DragonQuestVIII'' uses "Rotation And Tilt". Other games use "Rotation Alone", like ''VideoGame/DragonQuestVII'' and ''VideoGame/DragonQuestIX''.
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' uses "Rotation Alone".
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'' uses "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'' uses "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' series use "Rotation Alone".
* In ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series' games following the [[VideoGame3DLeap 3D Leap]] in ''Morrowind'', 1st Person and 3rd Person (in the AlwaysOverTheShoulder fashion) are both options. The games have the Rotate and Zoom version when standing still in 3rd Person view, which lets you admire your character customization and gear, but if you move or draw your weapons the camera will [[CameraLockOn snap right back]] over the shoulder.
* ''VideoGame/DivinityOriginalSin'' uses a "Rotation And Zoom", but only with the ''[[UpdatedRerelease Enhanced Edition]]''.
* ''VideoGame/GrimDawn'' uses a "Rotation And Zoom".


[[folder: Sandbox ]]

* ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' games since ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAutoSanAndreas'' use "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/NoMoreHeroes'' and ''VideoGame/NoMoreHeroes2DesperateStruggle'' use "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/SaintsRow'' uses "Rotation And Tilt" unless in aiming modes.


[[folder: Action ]]

* ''VideoGame/TheMatrixPathOfNeo'' has the "Rotation and Tilt" variety of camera.


[[folder: Adventure ]]

* ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'' and ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'' use "Rotation And Zoom".
* ''VideoGame/BraveFencerMusashi'' used rotation only in some areas.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyCrystalChroniclesTheCrystalBearers'' uses "Rotation And Tilt".
* ''VideoGame/VagrantStory'' uses rotation only.


[[folder: Real Time Strategy ]]

* ''Warhammer 40000: Dawn of War'' and ''Warhammer 40000: Dawn of War 2'' use a "Rotation And Zoom" camera when the player wants to do close ups on the action.


[[folder: Edutainment Games ]]

* ''VideoGame/WolfQuest'' gives you the option of "Rotation Alone".