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what features should a good engine have

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I would like to know: what features should a good 3D engine have so that you would pay 20$ for its source? I would like to know your opinion very much! Before answering look at the price one more time

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It depends on what type of 3D engine you're talking about. A 3D engine for first person shooter games? A 3D engine for MMORPG games? You need to be more specific...

[edited by - Chacha on January 12, 2004 9:25:44 AM]

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With so many high quality free game/gfx engines out there, i doubt anyone would pay for one.

Also, most of the people here on these forums either use these high quality engines or make their own. Most of those who make their own do so for learning purposes rather then make some money out of it.

Im not saying that you shouldnt aim to make money out of it. But for a start, you will have to offer something significantly more than all the other free engines out there. Some of them are even Open Source.

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yep, that seems to be just the problem with engines. there doesnt seem to be much between free open source already-close-to-commercial engines and real commercial engines costing a fortune.

problem is: whatever work you would be willing to do for $20 is most likely a lot less than what many guys invested over many years in those free engines.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Good Lighting

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Here''s what I''d pay 20$ for :
- Portable engine : preferably using SDL, OpenGL(of course) and OpenAL
- Its own model file format, with an exporter plugin for 3DStudio or Milkshape3D, supporting skeletal animation and bump-mapping
- Dynamic Lighting
- Multi-Texturing
- Particle Engine
- Space Partitionning (be it Octrees, BSPs, Portals or whatever)
- Scripting System
- Bump-Mapping
- Dynamic Shadows
- If it can display some kind of terrain : CLOD (chech out http://vterrain.org it''s a good source for terrain rendering algos)
- Sound Support : Ogg-vorbis file format
- Physics : collision detection and skeletal animation at least

All those (except for the model file format) can be done with ressources available on GameDev, GameTutorials, official sites of SDL, OpenGL, OpenAL, Ogg-vorbis, nVidia and ATI.

I think coming up with a model file format supporting skeletal animation and bump-mapping, providing AT LEAST one exporter, the complete format documentation, and a license that allows the buyer to do whatever he likes with it except selling it as he''s own work or giving it away for free, largely justifies paying 20$ for the engine source AND design document (always helpful to have a generic idea how it works).

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quote:
Original post by Trexmaster
Here''s what I''d pay 20$ for :
- *.*



Does the $20 come with a programmer too?

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I would say the single most important feature of an engine is EASE OF USE. And then features.

Look at it this way, you want to charge $20. So who will pay $20? The BIG games companies certainly won''t. They have tons o cash, they''ll buy a "real engine".

so you are left with amateurs who either are making a game for fun or people who want to make a commercial game but have limited funds to work with.

That being said, I really think your biggest feature should be ease of use, because there are already opensource engines available. But if you made an engine with a reasonable decent feature set that was drop dead easy to use (ie off the ground and going in less than an 30 minutes of coding) you might could actually sell it for $20.

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It''s true that there are many excellent open source game engine''s out there.. To be honest, there''s just so many resources for the budding young amateur developer these days that he''s spoilt for choice.

If you''re going to make a half way decent game engine, then I suggest you write a book on it, because you''re more likely to get published and make money off a book than just the source code. I have personally downloaded and viewed 3 dozen modern game engine''s (Including the QuakeII source code - which let''s face it would take some beating).

I think it''s terrible that our skills are worth so little, but unfortunately that''s just the sad reality of it. You''d make more money (plenty more in fact) scrubbing toilets for a living.

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What makes a good engine. Well an engine SDk is a set of librarys/API''s and Tools. In essence when your using an engine to develop your game your really just using as set of libraries and API''s. So its important that these are well documented. API''s should have lots of good documentation and there should be various other levels of documentation Design decisions sample code..etc. The API should be well designed and very clean and consistant. If an engine has great features but is very hard to use or impossible to try to figure out how to use then it''s not really worth using. Few bug''s in the engine''s Libraries are also very important. I guess this all goes in hand with easy of use (already mentioned by duke). Ofcouse the Technology is also important in the game engine as well, along with completeness of the features (for example, if the engine only supports importing geometry in one format then it can become a hassel to load geometry of other formats, you would have to write these yourself, but if it supported a wide range of formats then everything becomse alot easier)

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quote:
Original post by TheGilb
I think it''s terrible that our skills are worth so little, but unfortunately that''s just the sad reality of it.


Well i dont beleive that skills of amature developers are worth little. I see it as as stepping stone into the industry. Developing and learning on your own coupled with a solid education would potentially give you a good shot of entering the industry.

Also look at all the wonderful stuff that people have developed in their spare time outside of work or school. If you want to make money developing in your spare time, it''s very possible. A collegue of my developed a set of image filters for an application called FinalCutPro, he makes a substantial amount of money from the sales of his filters. I guess you have to just differentiated your work from what''s out there. Do something that is orignial, don''t just rehash whats out there or if u do, then do it better with higher quality.

I personally do hobby development for learning; when i first started out I wanted to do something to make money. But ya know, even if u spend time learning new things, you may not make money but your doing something you find interesting and you are increaing your techincal skills and trust me....it will help you get into industry.

quote:
You''d make more money (plenty more in fact) scrubbing toilets for a living.

No offence to anyone (i''ve done this at work myself) but would you learn anything from scrubbing a toliet?

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