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Third-Person Shooter

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"Absence makes the heart grow fonder; maybe the distaste I developed for cover-based shooting was rooted more in its overexposure than its inherent godawfulness. Now that it's the generic sandbox that feels like the overexposed thing, it'd be nice to kill baddies without having to climb to the top of a radio mast first and peep through their changing room windows with high-power binoculars."
Zero Punctuation on Gears of War: Ultimate Edition

A subgenre of shooters, these are shooter games in a third-person perspective. Featuring a free-rotating camera or Always Over the Shoulder perspective, third-person shooters often combine the shooting elements of a First-Person Shooter or Light Gun shooter, with the jumping and climbing puzzles of a 3D platformer and/or a simple melee fighting akin to brawlers.

Third-Person Shooter games on consoles, similar to First-Person Shooters, often incorporate an aim-assist feature. Though just like FPS titles, motion-based control schemes such as gyroscopic aiming and "flick stick" arose as popular alternatives in the late 2010s thanks to titles like Splatoon, due to offering comparable aiming and precision to the traditional keyboard and mouse setup used by computer players.

Many TPS games do give the player an optional first-person view, which allows for more precise shots and looking around at environmental features that are otherwise hidden from the default camera. In many cases, the player must stand still to do this, but some titles allow the player to forego the third-person framework entirely and play the title like a FPS; indeed, Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath actually requires the player to shoot from first-person, and in the chase camera view only melee attacks are allowed.

Most third-person shooters adopt an Always Over the Shoulder perspective, influenced by Resident Evil 4, and popularized and codified by Gears of War.

The ability to Take Cover!, and a reliance on it for victory, makes one of these games a member of the "cover shooter" Sub-Genre.

Many Stealth Based Games also tend to be third-person shooters, though some FPS examples certainly exist. It also isn't rare for there to be a heavy use of melee gameplay in these titles, though if there's more fisticuffs than gunplay, you may be better off defining it as a Beat 'em Up or Hack and Slash. Speaking of, this genre is especially prone to incorporating sequences of other gameplay types, such as driving and puzzle minigames.


Over-the-shoulder locked or free floating camera

High/fixed camera (Top Down, 3/4, Isometric, etc)

Primarily another genre, but with a significant TPS mode


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Alternative Title(s): TPS, Third Person Shooters



Control is a 2019 New Weird Action-Adventure video game with Metroidvania elements created by Remedy Entertainment for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. It was released on August 27, 2019.

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