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Which 3d Engine to choose for Skyrim clone?


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#1 Atlantic-sys   Members   -  Reputation: 103

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 06:37 AM

Hi, the question is which 3D Engine should i choose to make an awesome graphics like in Skyrim game where everything is moving (leaves, trees, grass etc.)open area? Now i have only very costly engines like Chrome 3D 4(? usd), Cryengine 3(? usd), Unigine(25000 usd). With free we have OGRE and Irrlicht but i don`t know if they will be suitable for this level of graphics. Also we have Essenthel(which is purely documentated) and C4(which have a ploblem with open areas). Budget is 1000 usd. Thanks.

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#2 Krypt0n   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2631

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 07:06 AM

isn't there a free sdk version of the cryengine? I'd think it's best for that kind of game, as FarCry + crysis1 were open sandbox games, kind of what you'd need for skyrim.

#3 Radikalizm   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2974

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 07:07 AM

Woah there, slow down a bit before you start throwing money at things

Picking an expensive 3D engine will not guarantee good graphics, you'll need a good team of experienced artists combined with the right software for your needs
Also, a $1000 budget is not nearly enough for a skyrim clone, I've seen statistics which claim Skyrim had a development budget of $85 million with a development team of about 100 people working on it full time, not including people who had smaller jobs, like voice actors and such.

Some questions for you:
-How much more money can you acquire for this project?
-How many AAA games have you worked on and how many large-scale development teams have you managed?
-How big is your development team? If not big enough, will you be able to get the proper funding and office space to hire more people?
-Do you have the proper agreements with Bethesda which allow you to create a Skyrim clone?

Since you haven't picked an engine yet it'd probably be safest to go for a system which your team of developers is most experienced with.

Edited by Radikalizm, 27 July 2012 - 07:13 AM.

I gets all your texture budgets!


#4 clashie   Validating   -  Reputation: 479

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 05:06 PM

Why not just mod Skyrim? The base is there and you have everything you need to make a completely new game.

Look at Nehrim for Oblivion. It uses the assets (and I'd assume plenty of their own as well), but it's still an entirely new world in the end.

#5 SimonForsman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 6293

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 06:24 PM

Hi, the question is which 3D Engine should i choose to make an awesome graphics like in Skyrim game where everything is moving (leaves, trees, grass etc.)open area? Now i have only very costly engines like Chrome 3D 4(? usd), Cryengine 3(? usd), Unigine(25000 usd). With free we have OGRE and Irrlicht but i don`t know if they will be suitable for this level of graphics. Also we have Essenthel(which is purely documentated) and C4(which have a ploblem with open areas). Budget is 1000 usd. Thanks.


CryEngine3 can be had at $0 + 20% of revenue.

Now the big problem, $1000 is nothing, it gets you around 10-20 hours worth of labor from a skilled developer/artist, the main thing you need to make a game with good graphics is.. believe it or not: good graphics and for a game like Skyrim you need alot of it, you shouldn't worry about what engine you're using it is not that relevant(atleast not if your goal is to match skyrim quality wise as its graphics engine is fairly basic by todays standards and performance wise a modern PC can handle a game such as that even with a less than optimal engine (besides, its highly unlikely that you'll finish a game of that scale within 5 years so you can pretty much expect all your potential players to have machines that are significantly better than the top of the line rigs of today)), you should worry about finding a few good artists willing to put several years of unpaid full-time work into your game though, that will be your biggest challenge.
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#6 Nypyren   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4787

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 08:09 PM

Why not just mod Skyrim? The base is there and you have everything you need to make a completely new game.


Seconded.

#7 JWalsh   Moderators   -  Reputation: 463

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 08:29 PM

As others have already stated, making a Skyrim clone is a huge undertaking and requires a significant number of hours spent developing/learning a game engine, as well as developing art assets for the game. In addition to which, Skyrim didn't have particularly good graphics. But... under the assumption you already know all of this, and are just trying to make a fantastic eye-candy game, the answer is quite simple - nearly all modern graphics engines will work if YOU have the necessary skills.

These days, "good graphics" is defined by high quality textures and 3D models (which requires talented artists) as well as advanced lighting & texturing algorithms. These include parallax/relief mapping, Screen-Space Ambient Occlusion, Normal Mapping, Detail Mapping, Caustics, Fresnel effects, atmospheric effects/particles, real-time radiosity or photon mapping, reflections, sub-surface scattering, tone mapping & HDRI, motion blur, etc...In most cases, the algorithms for these are well-documented and available on the Internet, or if you're sufficiently clever, you can derive the algorithms on your own once you understand the principles.

The good news is that most all of this is ran on your GPU using various real-time shader techniques. This means that these advanced techniques will work with nearly any graphics engine, as once the vertices hit your hardware, the "graphics engine" has almost no impact on what's possible. The bad news is that most of this stuff requires fairly sophisticated math skills. Now, you may be saying "Yeah! That's all the stuff I want my graphics engine to do for me. I just want to provide it with models and adjust a few nobs and it looks fantastic" to which I say, if you're looking for a free graphics engine that supports these things out-of-the-box with no work on your part, you're going to be disappointed.

If you can't afford good artists, can't afford an advanced 3D engine, then your options are crappy artwork with a less sophisticated engine that requires you to implement the algorithms yourself. If you don't have those skills either, well then... you get the point.

Good luck!
Jeromy Walsh
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Microsoft Windows Phone Team
Chronicles of Elyria (An In-development MMORPG)
GameDevelopedia.com - Blog & Tutorials
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"The question is not how far, the question is do you possess the constitution, the depth of faith, to go as far as is needed?" - Il Duche, Boondock Saints

#8 PunCrathod   Members   -  Reputation: 336

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 04:24 AM

The good news is that most all of this is ran on your GPU using various real-time shader techniques. This means that these advanced techniques will work with nearly any graphics engine, as once the vertices hit your hardware, the "graphics engine" has almost no impact on what's possible. The bad news is that most of this stuff requires fairly sophisticated math skills. Now, you may be saying "Yeah! That's all the stuff I want my graphics engine to do for me. I just want to provide it with models and adjust a few nobs and it looks fantastic" to which I say, if you're looking for a free graphics engine that supports these things out-of-the-box with no work on your part, you're going to be disappointed.

Sorry If I'm wrong but when I took a look at UDK(I think cyrengine sdk is similar too) It looked very much like, input your models and textures, Put them in the world and turn a few knobs and the engine makes magic happen. Ofcourse even if the engine has all kinds of cool GFX effects built in that you can turn on by turning a knob you can't make an awesomely good looking game without good models, textures and world desings that match in art style. Then you have to find the right position for every knob. Write the code to handle your game logic(physics are already in the engine) and you are done. You most likely need a team of atleast 10+ and a few years to make anything remotely skyrimish. But with enough manpower and time you can make it without ever touching any code that has anything to do with drawing things on the screen.

That is the whole point of those game development kits. You don't have to be a master level coder and you still can make something awesome. Not neccessarily triple-A awesome but awesome non the less.

#9 JWalsh   Moderators   -  Reputation: 463

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 12:09 PM

Sorry If I'm wrong but when I took a look at UDK(I think cyrengine sdk is similar too) It looked very much like, input your models and textures, Put them in the world and turn a few knobs and the engine makes magic happen. Ofcourse even if the engine has all kinds of cool GFX effects built in that you can turn on by turning a knob you can't make an awesomely good looking game without good models, textures and world desings that match in art style. Then you have to find the right position for every knob. Write the code to handle your game logic(physics are already in the engine) and you are done. You most likely need a team of atleast 10+ and a few years to make anything remotely skyrimish. But with enough manpower and time you can make it without ever touching any code that has anything to do with drawing things on the screen.

That is the whole point of those game development kits. You don't have to be a master level coder and you still can make something awesome. Not neccessarily triple-A awesome but awesome non the less.


True. UDK, like other engines are more "turn the nob and get great graphics", but the UDK is only free for educational & non-commercial use. For any internal applications it's $2,500 per developer, per year. so if you make an internal application that takes 4 developers, after 5 years in use you've paid Epic $50,000.

If you develop a commercial application to distribute, it's free for the first $50,000 of revenue, and then 25% of your profit above that. So if you do make the next Skyrim, and your game goes platinum, a full 1/4 of your profit goes to Epic. That can range from 10's of thousands, to MILLIONS of dollars in royalty fees. The point is, I said ....

if you're looking for a free graphics engine that supports these things out-of-the-box with no work on your part, you're going to be disappointed.


...and the UDK isn't really free. In fact, the more successful your game is, the more expensive it becomes.
Jeromy Walsh
Sr. Tools & Engine Programmer | Software Engineer
Microsoft Windows Phone Team
Chronicles of Elyria (An In-development MMORPG)
GameDevelopedia.com - Blog & Tutorials
GDNet Mentoring: XNA Workshop | C# Workshop | C++ Workshop
"The question is not how far, the question is do you possess the constitution, the depth of faith, to go as far as is needed?" - Il Duche, Boondock Saints

#10 dragon.R   Members   -  Reputation: 247

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 02:40 AM

The engine whitch Skyrim used seems to be GameBryo

#11 Radikalizm   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2974

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 02:48 AM

The engine whitch Skyrim used seems to be GameBryo


Gamebryo was used in Oblivion if I recall correctly, Skyrim uses an in-house engine I believe, something called the 'Creation Engine'

I gets all your texture budgets!


#12 jameswilddev   Members   -  Reputation: 112

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Posted 01 August 2012 - 08:01 AM

It's still built on their older Gamebryo engine. They just changed enough that it's distinct from their older Gamebryo, adding better lighting and such which it desperately needed.

If you wanna spend $1k on a game, spend $1k on a game rather than 1/10000th of a game :P

#13 Kryzon   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 3314

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Posted 01 August 2012 - 10:25 PM

Esenthel engine is purposed for MMO-scale projects, and it's cheap for indie developers.

It's also cross-platform.




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