Best game engine for begginer?

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GetOutOfBox 101 Jun 02, 2009 at 13:23

Hi, I know this has been posted many times, but I’m having trouble finding one that suits my needs. It should be open source or freeware, though if you have a really good commercial one post and I’ll check it out.

I’m looking for an engine that suits a begginer, like a GUI editor, with not too much coding required, though I’d like scripting so I can get started with programmign and later move on to something like C4 engine. I’m looking for a 3D game engine, with decent to good graphics. Support for popular 3D model formats would be nice too, I don’t want something that can only use its proprietry model format, like Alice Storytelling (my high school uses that for the total n00bs at game design, I’ve used Gamemaker and some other 2D engines before).

I’m not expecting to make games like UT3 with an easy to use engine, I’m aware of the fact that really good quality games require programming, I’d just like to get started.

If someone knew a really good tutorial or book that teaches 3D game programming (like hardcore pretty much just code engines) that would be begginer friendly post that too.

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fireside 141 Jun 02, 2009 at 16:23

Blender game engine is a good starter engine. If you already use another modeler, it has quite a few imports. If you aren’t using a modeler yet, it’s a good one and the models are automatically put into the engine. It uses logic bricks to start out programming and then you can go to python scripting.

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GetOutOfBox 101 Jun 02, 2009 at 18:41

I’ll check it out, meanwhile I’m still open to any ideas.

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Wrks 101 Jun 02, 2009 at 21:54

Unity.

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delinkx 101 Jun 03, 2009 at 04:00

gamestudio

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alphadog 101 Jun 03, 2009 at 11:54

Unity, Torque3D, Gamestudio, Gamecore, Delta3D.

That should be more than enough to get going…

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wgarnett 101 Jun 12, 2009 at 12:55

I have the same question too,now I use Unity3D

I also want to know any other better 3D Game Engine ?

and any MMO online 3D Game Engine to develop ?

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alphadog 101 Jun 12, 2009 at 15:00

There’s a huge breadth of types of environments, from cookie-cutter like RealmCrafter, to DIY like Horde3D + other libraries.

Depends on where you want to put your time and how much your game design and requirements deviates from the cookie-cutter options.

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boss_007 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 05:19

@GetOutOfBox

I’ll check it out, meanwhile I’m still open to any ideas.

if you are a beginner ,i would suggest dx studio

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Sol_HSA 119 Aug 07, 2009 at 07:21

if you’re a beginner, I would suggest building your own.
Seriously.

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alphadog 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 14:56

I would heartily recommend against building your own engine, unless you want to be the kind of game developer that builds the tools other developers use to create a game, rather than being a game builder.

If you want to create games, start creating games, not game engines. There are plenty of skills to hone there…

Let’s put it another way: someone who builds a web application doesn’t start by building a compiler nor a web application framework. And, no, a race car driver doesn’t have to know how to strip and rebuild an engine to be an effective driver.

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TheNut 179 Aug 07, 2009 at 18:53

If the game is simple, scrap the engine entirely and plow straight into the problem. SDL + game logic. Sol’s recommendation of developing your own engine isn’t all that bad of an idea either. Without a team, the odds of building a successful 3D game, regardless of an engine, are slim to none. You might as well put that time to good use and learn about the mechanics involved rather than blow away time trying to find or make high quality game resources. The experience gained from understand how everything works will help you build games with any engine and solve problems much quicker.

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alphadog 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 19:17

SDL is a game engine, albeit a simple one that forces you to reinvent not the whole wheel, but maybe just the inner tube? :D

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SyntaxError 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 22:47

@Sol_HSA

if you’re a beginner, I would suggest building your own.
Seriously.

Yeah I kind of agree with this. It’s mainly because you will learn so much in the process. I know it kind of seems reversed. You might think an experienced guy would build his own. That might be the case also. But an experienced guy also knows quite a bit about graphics and game programming already. He has the knowledge to judge what premade stuff he should use and what he should write himself. If you are a rank beginner you will have a hard time judging these things. Building your own engine will give you a good foundation of knowledge even if you make a lot of mistakes and it isn’t perfect. Even if you end up throwing it out later. You aren’t going to build a world beater game the first time anyway so you might as well learn as much as you can in the process.

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rhamm1320 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 22:50

I have to side with using a pre-built game engine. Since you title indicates begginer, go with an existing engine. I use GameCore and love it. If you want a free engine, just in the last few day, 3DRad has become a free engine.

As for building your own, it would be like asking someone who does not know how to swim to jump in the deep end of the pool. Of course they may be able to swim, but they could also sink to the bottom and drown.

You can make a game without knowing how to make a engine. As you get more experience, you may opt to design your own game engine.

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SyntaxError 101 Aug 07, 2009 at 23:02

@rhamm1320

As for building your own, it would be like asking someone who does not know how to swim to jump in the deep end of the pool. Of course they may be able to swim, but they could also sink to the bottom and drown.

Except for no one ever died by screwing by screwing up a game engine :)

Also you can always go back and fix your mistakes later.

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alphadog 101 Aug 08, 2009 at 00:40

@SyntaxError

If you are a rank beginner you will have a hard time judging these things.

If you are a rank beginner, just about any engine will do… and you should shower.

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SyntaxError 101 Aug 08, 2009 at 00:49

@alphadog

and you should shower.

Only if you are working in a team.

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TheNut 179 Aug 08, 2009 at 01:32

Have some dignity!

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starstutter 101 Aug 08, 2009 at 03:43

Just to throw a thought in here:

You can make a game without knowing how to make a engine. As you get more experience, you may opt to design your own game engine.

The only reason I disagree with this is because of how demoralizing this transition is. If you start off making you own engine, the technology and capability increases are gradual and you get that “glee!” feeling when you accomplish a new graphics, script, logic or physics feature.

On the other hand, if you get used to using Unreal 3 for several years and then suddenly decide to build your own engine, your first trial will probably be no more advanced than the origional quake engine. Believe me, seeing your beginning tech next to professional tech is quite depressing.

However, speaking in the long-run, it is possible to create an engine that can visually achieve professional level graphics (given that you have decent art). :)

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alphadog 101 Aug 09, 2009 at 15:49

The biggest problem with building an engine first comes from the time it takes to actually build a complete working engine, especially if you are on it part-time and start with no coding experience, combined with the rapid evolution of the industry as you accomplish the very basic parts of an engine.

Basically, building even an intermediate-level 2D/3D game engine is a HUGE task. Poeple forget just how much raw time it takes to bang out all those lines, much less think about them, debug them, redesign them, etc.

Layer on the other HUGE task of designing a playable game, coding the rule layer and creating game content, and you’ll see why people never finish; it’s because lots of people start with building an “easy” engine when they just want to design a “simple” game.

Let’s assume you are smart enough to realize that both of these are big tasks that could sap so much time individually that the risk is that you may never get to the second one, ask yourself, which one is my “Top 1” desire: build an engine or build a game?

If you get to the second one, kudos abound then… :D

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SyntaxError 101 Aug 09, 2009 at 21:54

I don’t think you have to build the whole engine ahead of time. I did a few pieces first. I started with my LOD mesh structure and then added collision detection, a camera class and wire frame graphics. I can run around on my world up and down mountains and so forth. It refines and unrefines as I move. My character is only three stacked spheres at the moment. I am only now working on the shader and animation classes.

I’m not saying I am doing things in the right (or wrong) order. I’m just pointing out that you can do a few pieces of the game engine and then work on the game and the game engine in parallel. In fact I would say it’s preferable to doing the engine and then trying to use it. You add things as needed and see how they fit in. I have even reworked parts of my code already when I found things that I didn’t like.

I realize the whole thing is still a big job. However I think one biggest jobs you have is getting over the mental hump of sitting down and writing some code. Once you start to see some results you get some encouragement and it doesn’t seem so bad any more.

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alphadog 101 Aug 10, 2009 at 12:39

@SyntaxError

I don’t think you have to build the whole engine ahead of time. I did a few pieces first. I started with my LOD mesh structure and then added collision detection, a camera class and wire frame graphics. I can run around on my world up and down mountains and so forth. It refines and unrefines as I move. My character is only three stacked spheres at the moment. I am only now working on the shader and animation classes.

How long did it take you to get to this point, and at what rate (avg hrs/day)?
@SyntaxError

However I think one biggest jobs you have is getting over the mental hump of sitting down and writing some code. Once you start to see some results you get some encouragement and it doesn’t seem so bad any more.

Very true.

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SyntaxError 101 Aug 10, 2009 at 14:12

@alphadog

How long did it take you to get to this point, and at what rate (avg hrs/day)?

I’ve been doing the project for about a year. At first I wasn’t working full time though. Now I have an office and am doing this as my regular job (self funded). However I was displaying my mesh on the screen probably a month after I started.

On the other hand I’ve had to figure out lot of stuff myself. My world is real time fractal based so the technology is rather new and everything takes much longer.

For instance, because my world is big I have to move the data around the camera instead of simply setting camera transformations. Obviously I don’t want to send down the full data every frame so I need to have the extra complexity of transforming the camera and when new data is ready I switch over. There is also LOD which adds to the problem.

Then there are the problems with a round world. Minus Y is no longer always down. You can’t take advantage of a matrix like structure for fast collision detection. Also since everything has to have many levels of LOD you have to organize your polygons fully at run time instead of using a pre calculated occtree. Finally the combination of collision detection and LOD is a big headache. If you are moving fast you can hit a surface before LOD has time to refine it. I wanted an algorithm that would never break Once your avatar gets stuck in geometry it’s hard to figure out a way to get him out that will work every time. I wanted to avoid that problem altogether. I literally sat on the couch for three days just thinking before I solved it.

Then there is 2D noise on a round surface. In the future I’ll have to do MOB pathing on the server side which brings a whole new list of problems……. Again my point is, if I was just trying to recreate something more standard it would be a lot easier. For myself I consider the extra work well worth it because at the end of the day I’ll have something that few people can replicate. For someone more inexperienced however, writing a relatively simple game engine is probably doable and gets you a butt load of experience and knowledge. You will make yourself far more invaluable to employers.

Frank Luna’s books cover a huge amount of what you need to know, at least if you are programming in DirectX. I’m sure there are other good resources if you look around.