I’ve learned to like them with shows and movies sometimes as well as out-in-the-world parts of games where it helps to pick up things that are passively being said, but I’m still iffy on whether I like them with cutscenes. On one hand, it feels like I’m taking myself out of it somewhat to have them on, but I also have a hard time taking in information in those circumstances without them. Maybe I just place more importance on those moments in games because they feel special when in practice it’s no different than a movie where more than just dialogue is being delivered. So I guess I’m begrudgingly saying yes to subtitles/captions.
First thing I do when booting up a new game, every time. They don’t break immersion at all for me, and in non-English media I find myself “hearing” the dialogue in English.
I don’t trust real time audio mixing.
I’ve started turning them on the last couple of years mostly because either the many back ground noise get in the way of the voice acting or just to catch what I might have missed. They don’t bother me at all.
i don’t trust my ability to understand words
My comprehension of spoken English is pretty decent but I need those subtitles especially when accents or regional dialects come into play - background noise interferes with my understanding a lot of the time, too, so I love me some subtitles for more or less all the visual media I consume.
Subtitles are actually extremely helpful in Hitman (2016), even if you can hear just fine. There is a lot of ambient dialogue in the game, but only the particularly useful/relevant stuff is subtitled. Or to look at it another way, you can safely ignore all the stuff that isn’t subtitled.
For example (and it’s been a while, so maybe some details are off on this), there’s an NPC in Hokkaido who has a conversation with one character about drinking and a conversation with another character about smoking. The conversation about drinking isn’t subtitled, it’s just fun background info about the character. The smoking conversation IS subtitled, because it’s there as a clue that you can find a pack of cigarettes (which can be used to take out one of the targets) in the guy’s room.