Let's use this thread to try and come up with the best possible first-person melee combat experience, and the one which we'd like to see in TES VI. This is totally not because I'm working on a first-person melee-orientated game right now, it's only because I want to talk about TES VI. Obviously. 😛
So, what opinions have we got around? Which TES game did you most enjoy the first-person combat mechanics of, what would you like to see in TES VI, and what is your favourite game that had FP melee combat?
For me, the best TES game (in terms of first-person combat) has got to be Skyrim, though it's far from perfect. The two-handed approach was supposed to allow me to live all of my left-handed fantasies (we're seriously under-represented in games, y'know), but I remember the game had some sort of a bias (related to the fast-equip menu or something) towards using shields in the left hand. Disappointing!
Naturally, this means nothing from a mechanical standpoint, but the ad-hoc dual-wielding also wasn't great in other aspects - not being able to parry with a one-hander whilst dual-wielding or having a spell, for an example.
I do prefer spells being "equipped", and not linked to another key as was the case in Oblivion and before (I think), but designing an elegant, fluid control scheme with all this in mind might be harder than it would seem.
From a behind-the-scenes point-of-view, one of the biggest turn-offs of Morrowind for me, after having played through many other games, including Oblivion and Skyrim, was the hit-chance mechanic. Don't get me wrong, accuracy and chance-to-hit are a good fit for isometric RPGs (lots of them) or tactical games (like XCOM), but they don't belong in my action-RPG first-person game.
Oblivion's combat, on the other and, was exceptionally "floaty", and one could swing a sword around as if its mass was close to zero. That wasn't great. Skyrim tried to rectify this, and mostly did a good job, but it still leaves a bit to be desired.
When it comes to melee combat in other games, Mount&Blade is the hands-down winner - with its variable 4-directional attacking and parrying allowing for lots of depth and skill-dependent gameplay, especially on the multiplayer scene. However, M&B is usually played from the third person, and I'm not sure such a directional system would be intuitive enough in first person.
Dark Messiah of Might and Magic is another favourite, with a combat system designed specifically for first-person. It's not perfect either, but it's quite well done. Of course, it isn't as good as Mount&Blade's combat, but I'm really keen on having my cake and eating it too.
Dishonoured (which, like Dark Messiah, was made by Arkane Studios) pulled the melee bits off surprisingly well, with an exceptionally elegant approach to parrying. However, that game relied on stealth takedowns and assassinations and the rule of cool, and the depth of the straight-up melee combat was lacking.
Warhammer: End Times - Vermintide, which I haven't played, appears to have also done a good job with its melee combat, but I can't speak for or against it due to never having experienced it.
What opinions do you guys have? Which games do you like most, and would you like anything new in TES VI?