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Game Engine for Psychological Research


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#1 kidofstars   Members   -  Reputation: 119

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 02:39 PM

Hello everyone. I'm completely new to game development, but am currently looking for a game engine or development tool to create virtual environments/scenarios for psychological research and testing. Could anyone offer some advices, please? Our requirements are as follows:

(1) A 3D engine, because the environment has to be 3D;
(2) Loyalty free, but inevitable upfront costs are acceptable;
(3) Could be published and accessed online.
(4) Interactive, so that we could design responses to participant’s behavior or choices;
(5) Allow us to record the participants’ behavior, for example, their paths, time, and choices to questions;
(6) Easy to learn and use; programming accessible but should be as less as possible.

The possible candidates we’re now considering includes Unity3D, GameStudio A8, Torque 3D, Delta3D and Worldvis Vizard. There’re certainly other choices, so any advice will be deeply appreciated!

Thanks in advance!

UPDATE ON NOV 13:

Thanks everyone for your kind advice. I have almost decided on Unity3D. Thanks! Could anyone help me with one more question, please?

Does any of these engines (say, Unity and Torque) allow us to require, say, a serial number (for desktop distribution) or registered logging-in (for web distribution) so that we may distribute and commercialize the maps? I tried the distribution utility in Unity3D, but it directly packages the files into .exe or HTML... Perhaps for the HTML, we might create an extra loggin-in page? Thanks again and any ideas are appreciated.

Edited by kidofstars, 13 November 2012 - 10:09 AM.


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#2 superman3275   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1964

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 07:35 PM

Unity3D will be the easiest and require the least (and easiest) programming.

1) Unity is mainly 3d and suits your needs for a psychological research.
2) As long as you're not selling you're creation to other companies you should be fine
3) Has built in support for this, even has it's own plugin.
4) All game engines are interactive, and Unity is as well.
5) Completely possible, there are even sections in the documentation about this (Saves).
6) Programming is good and easy, there isn't much.

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#3 kidofstars   Members   -  Reputation: 119

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 05:38 PM

Unity3D will be the easiest and require the least (and easiest) programming.

1) Unity is mainly 3d and suits your needs for a psychological research.
2) As long as you're not selling you're creation to other companies you should be fine
3) Has built in support for this, even has it's own plugin.
4) All game engines are interactive, and Unity is as well.
5) Completely possible, there are even sections in the documentation about this (Saves).
6) Programming is good and easy, there isn't much.



Thank you for your reply, superman3275... I'm sorry for having posted on a wrong subject area... Your reply is very ensuring and to the point. Unity will definitely be my first choice.Thank you!

Additionally, may I have your opinions on other choices like Torque, GameStudio and Delta3D, please? They look nearly the same to me... =.=! But I have a feeling that Torque is easy to publish online and distribute??? GameStudio seems to have a very rich supporting documentation? I'm completely entry-level, so correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks very much.

#4 ddn3   Members   -  Reputation: 1198

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 04:29 PM

Any of those engines could work but Unity 3D is the best choice. However even that said what you want will require some level of expertise, maybe more than a single person would have, so my guess is multiple developers and depending on the scope of the project maybe several months to a year..

Unity 3D has a web player which u can use to publish your Unity 3D content. Of course you will have to setup the web sever and hosting backend yourself none of those game engines do that for you.

Good Luck!

#5 kidofstars   Members   -  Reputation: 119

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 12:21 PM

Unity3D will be the easiest and require the least (and easiest) programming.

1) Unity is mainly 3d and suits your needs for a psychological research.
2) As long as you're not selling you're creation to other companies you should be fine
3) Has built in support for this, even has it's own plugin.
4) All game engines are interactive, and Unity is as well.
5) Completely possible, there are even sections in the documentation about this (Saves).
6) Programming is good and easy, there isn't much.


Thanks a lot superman. A bit more question. By Unity3D, are you referring to the free version or Pro version ($1,500)? Thank you!

#6 kidofstars   Members   -  Reputation: 119

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 12:26 PM

Any of those engines could work but Unity 3D is the best choice. However even that said what you want will require some level of expertise, maybe more than a single person would have, so my guess is multiple developers and depending on the scope of the project maybe several months to a year..

Unity 3D has a web player which u can use to publish your Unity 3D content. Of course you will have to setup the web sever and hosting backend yourself none of those game engines do that for you.

Good Luck!


Thank you for your reply, ddn3! As you said, we have indeed realized that it can hardly be finished in a few days, and we are making a two year plan... Thanks for your wish. Additionally, by "Unity 3D", do you mean the free version of Unity or the charged Pro version? Thank you! :-)

#7 kidofstars   Members   -  Reputation: 119

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:10 AM

Any advice on the new question, please? Thanks!




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