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Field of View (FOV)


DoubleYou
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Introduction

 

Bethesda does not include an overt setting to change the field of view (FOV) in its games. The games I'm talking about here only apply to Oblivion, Skyrim, Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, and Fallout 4. Instead, the FOV can be modified via console commands and/or INI settings. This thread seeks answers to this problem.

 

Testing Methodology

 

It is a well-known fact that for many, if not all, of these games, the FOV is tied to the saved game. Therefore, to test the different ways we can modify FOV and see what the best methods are, we need a methodology to reliably show the capabilities of our modifications.

 

The best way to test INI settings is by using a new game, since FOV is tied to the game, but INI settings are tied to the whole. Going through the intro is time-consuming, so it is recommended to use a console command from the main menu to go to a test location to determine the initial effects.

 

It is commonly reported that FOV can change during gameplay via different events during the life of the save. Therefore, the initial effects of an INI setting might possibly not persist throughout the entire game. This, however, will need to be extensively tested for verification. Unfortunately, this will require playing a lot and seeing if the FOV, in fact, ever changes.

 

Please note that some mods can change FOV, especially those involving the camera (e.g., Skyrim Enhanced Camera, Face to Face Conversations, etc.) and should not be used in this testing, as those mods will hinder test results. 

 

To find out if FOV has changed throughout gameplay over time, use the FOV console command. For example, if you never, ever, changed FOV, via INI or console or mods, the default value for Skyrim is 65, so you would type in the console

FOV 65
If the camera changes at all, sometime during the save, the FOV was modified.

 

For the purposes of verification, testing should be used only on a legitimate Steam version of the game updated to the latest patch, with a savegame created and run only on that version.

 

INI Settings

 

The following are the INI settings for the aforementioned games with their default values that primarily control FOV. It is unknown if all of them work properly or if there are other INI settings that affect these. Testing of other relevant INI settings is appreciated.

 

Oblivion

 

Oblivion.ini

[Display]
fDefaultFOV=75
  • fDefaultFOV sets the FOV for everything. Therefore, if you change it, it will quite literally break the menu buttons as well as change what all you can see.
Fallout 3

 

Fallout.ini

[Display]
fDefault1stPersonFOV=75
fDefaultFOV=75
fDefaultWorldFOV=75
  • fDefault1stPersonFOV sets the hands FOV in Fallout 3, affecting the arms and weapons view in first person.
  • fDefaultFOV sets the default field of view in menus, such as the lockpicking interface.
  • fDefaultWorldFOV sets the default field of view of the world, which is what your character sees, in both first and third person.
Fallout New Vegas

 

Fallout.ini

[Display]
fDefault1stPersonFOV=75
fDefaultFOV=75
fDefaultWorldFOV=75
  • fDefault1stPersonFOV sets the hands FOV in Fallout New Vegas, affecting the arms and weapons view in first person.
  • fDefaultFOV sets the default field of view in menus, such as the lockpicking interface.
  • fDefaultWorldFOV sets the default field of view of the world, which is what your character sees, in both first and third person.
Skyrim

 

Skyrim.ini

[Display]
fDefault1stPersonFOV=65
fDefaultFOV=65
fDefaultWorldFOV=65
  • fDefault1stPersonFOV sets the hands FOV in Skyrim, affecting the arms and weapons view in first person.
  • fDefaultFOV sets the default field of view in menus, such as the lockpicking interface and inventory.
  • fDefaultWorldFOV sets the default field of view of the world, which is what your character sees, in both first and third person.
Fallout 4

 

Fallout4.ini

[Display]
fDefault1stPersonFOV=80
fDefaultFOV=80
fDefaultWorldFOV=70
  • fDefault1stPersonFOV sets the 1st person and Pipboy FOV.
  • fDefaultFOV may or may not do something. I've heard rumors that it might do something with the scope.
  • fDefaultWorldFOV sets the 3rd person FOV.
Console Commands

 

Console commands are able to modify FOV in-game. It is rather sketchy as to their persistence.

 

The most commonly known one sets the FOV, presumably only for the duration of the session. Replace 65 with the value desired.

 

FOV 65
Another one I've heard of, but haven't used as of yet:

setcameraFOV 65
Misinformation

 

Unfortunately, a lot of misinformation (unintentionally incorrect information) about FOV in these games has been spread online. It is the goal of this thread to gather all the knowledge regarding FOV with these game into one place, and dispel common misinformation.

Edited by DoubleYou
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This is fantastic, DoubleYou!

 

FOV has always been one of my main head-scratchers when it came to the .ini settings. There is so much misinformation out there about these settings in particular. It will be refreshing to find out the truth behind them. I really look forward to seeing any findings that may come out of this.

 

One question: While testing FOV settings, will you also be looking at the FOV "level of detail shadow switching" bug, as mentioned by JawZ in this post? This bug only seems to occur when FOV settings are changed, but I am not sure if it is in the scope of this thread or not.

 

Thanks again!

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