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Need advice...

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Hi, I started OpenGl programming sometime ago I know most of the basics, and I need advice on what to do next...see I'm trying to load 3d models into my game and I know there are pretty good libraries out there and all that. But I don't want to use somebody else's code since I won't understand how it works and I don't like that anyway I'm using blender to make my 3d models and exporting them to the dxf format...My question is should I try to write a loader for it now that I'm a noob? Or would it be better if I do it when I have more experience and work with some else's library for now? Thanks in advance! [edited by - JohnyB on July 27, 2003 11:20:34 PM]

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If you want to learn even more, you could always write an export plugin for blender (I know it isn''t that hard). This has several benefits.

First of all, you don''t have to learn a format which you then have to use and follow with its limitations.

With an own format (extracted information from blender), you can easily just choose the information you need (smaller binaries) and also add things that blender doesn''t support through external utils, like for instance a lightmap generator.

It''s very popular today to write the exporters yourself today and if you''re aiming to be part of a possibly commersial programming team some day, its a good idea to have tried this. It''s always nice to learn new stuff too isn''t it :-)

Otherwise, I will just recommend wotsit formats (www.wotsit.org, hosted by gamedev!), there you will find just about any format you''re trying to implement.

It''s a _very_ good idea to start to load objects instead of creating simple meshes by hand. When the loading is done, you can continue with lightmaps, radiosity, real time shadows, partilce systems (have perhaps nothing much to do with loading though), game elements such as monsters, AI etc... there is always cool stuff to try!

One which is really popular is of course vertex and pixel shaders (works in opengl too) and is a lot cooler if you apply them to models with a few more faces in them.

You should ALWAYS try to write your own code. Especially for a loader since its not really that hard part of the code. There are never good enough excuses since you will always pick upp more and more. Its not easy becomming a good programmer though, it takes years and years and rewrite after rewrite to learn the sweet stuff, but you will get a lot in return from the eyecandy on the screen while doing it.

Good luck!
Albert Sandberg

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