Switching between 1st and 3rd person gameplay

NPC

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I'll try to keep to the rules of this topic and not be specific to my current project as much as I can, but here's the quick rundown: In my game, you traverse the halls of a mansion with only a flashlight and a camera. Your goal? Set up a conivincing story for the tabloids so you can avoid getting kicked to the streets. The problem? There's a monster (or two) in the mansion. 

Sounds pretty typical, right? Well here's my idea- To see down dark hallways, you need a light. This light is attached to your camera (which is a quick hotkey away at all times). So you pull it out, and look through the lens, and you see a monster (Yoinks), which will hopefully be animated too. :I The ideal would be that you can move your mouse around to view more of the 'scene', and take a picture by clicking. Not entirely sure if this is possible (yet), but that's not what this thread is all about.

(inb4, no, it's not copying Fatal Frame. You can't kill anything with a camera, and ghosts aren't really a part of the game)

What I want to discuss is the effectiveness of switching between 3rd and 1st person (whether or not it be via camera).Would it add suspense to a horror game? Would it add atmosphere to an rpg world, or create an enlightening mini-game style puzzle? I haven't really found any examples of this, so I'm bringing it up now.
 

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Very interesting concept, but I do see a number of issues with it.

I'm imagining it's similiar to the "walk around in third person, take out camera and have camera-vision-mechanic-thingy".

Not sure about how you could pull that off convincingly in RM, but besides that, I wonder what you would see when you're not in first person mode.

If you need light to see things, and using light is tied to the first person perspective, would you see anything in third person mode?

I would understand it if it were "ghosts" that could only be seen through the camera, as that has been implemented wonderfully a number of times (Granted, those were movies, but the concept isn't that hard to pull of in a game), but tying the light mechanic to first person is new to me.

I mean, let's say you do see a monster in first person mode, wouldn't a game usually encourage you to GTFO? But If I read it right you can't really move in first person, so wouldn't that act against the general

"run away if you see evil stuff" mechanic? I would also keep potential POV switch lag in mind, as it would suck if you took out the flashlight, spotted a monster which approaches you and died trying to get back into third person mode due to loading/lag.

Call me out if I interpreted anything wrong.
 

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I wish I could say I've worked out those details of gameplay to a tee, but the game itself is in early development, so...it's mostly and idea atm.

It isn't a game enveloped in darkness. Picture a scene where lights will flicker/die, but then mysteriously come back on (or you might have to turn them on). The camera would mostly be used for atmosphere and solving puzzles, like seeing hidden writing on a wall, and my initial plan was to have a similar scoring system to Pokemon Snap (everyone recognizes Snap's potential as a horror game, no?), where mysterious pictures would be worth more, and hopefully add onto the experience of the game.

Clear up anything for you?

EDIT: The game would generally be lighted in 3rd person, just the occasional dark room or hallway, but you won't have to be in 1st person to traverse.
 
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