So, i played Call of Duty Black Ops III for the first time today on the PS4. Only multiplayer, playing 1x1 with a friend of mine who's also new, but already played a fair bit.
Won first map, lost second map.
First map, none of us knew very well.
Second map, he knew it very well, i did not.
I always resisted playing with a controller, because i played FPS's from a very young age, and i've always played them with a keyboard and mouse, and i'll be damned if there's any better configuration for play. Mouse gives you an unbelievable reaction time transfer from what you're seeing to your movements, and controller cannot replicate that.
I felt the controller clunky and underequipped for the task of playing a first person shooter. Perhaps tweaking a bit with sensitivity might help some situations, but i feel it also would make aiming a pain in others. You simply cannot have as fine a control with a controller that you can with a computer.
Furthermore, i felt as if the use of both hands for controlling aiming and firing is clunky. Use your left hand for aiming down sights, your right hand for shooting, but also use your left hand for walking and your right hand for moving the reticle. It's a brain scramble if i've ever seen one.
I guess one could accustom, but i still think keyboard and mouse are vastly superior, and the only option if the aim is competitive play.
Still, it wasn't as bad as i've thought it would be. I still had fun, the banter was great, i managed the enjoyment of beating someone who has much more experience on console FPS in general, lost the second match but still got close scores.
What this tells me?
Tactics and experience matter.
There was this one situation that had my friend baffled. He was hiding on a sniper perch in "Redwood" and i threw in a grenade from a blindspot. I knew he'd see the grenade and back off, so i moved across the danger zone, then threw a concussion grenade. I knew that would hit him at least a bit, and he'd probably think i'd still be in the same first blind spot as he had not seen me move from the first blind spot, so i used my stealthy character to sneak up on him and nab the kill.
My suspicions were confirmed when he voiced his objections over voice chat: "HOW THE HELL DID YOU DO THAT?!"
And i explained all of the above to him. Even though i didn't know that game, and i was unfamiliar with the controls and the platform, my general knowledge of FPS was enough to at least close the gap enough so that the game wasn't a complete one-sided battle.
My take from all this is:
Knowledge from a genre is valuable. I may have lost the second round, but i know that in the rematch tomorrow i'll stand a better chance. In this way, i think, genre knowledge is like an experience multiplier. If you know a genre well enough, even though the platform and gameplay are at the beggining unfamiliar to you, you'll pick it up much faster than someone that has never seen that in action.
Even if theoretically you're starting from the same place, in reality the more experienced player has a higher skill ceiling, and a faster rate of learning the skills required.
So that was a fun experience.