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What's a good free 3d engine?

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I'm thinking about using a 3d engine to make a 3d modeller. What is a good free one? I need it to: O Anti-alias O Be platform independent O Be fricken fast I'm looking for the best-looking platform independent engine.

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I think Ogre is nice... it's powerful and it's design is fairly intuitive. (http://ogre3d.org)

OpenSceneGraph is widely used, but is horribly lacking in documentation. (http://openscenegraph.net)


(I assume you are wanting a scene graph/rendering engine, as opposed to a game engine).

I'm sure others will chime in with a zillion others. :-)

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Which one anti-aliases?

I need a recommendation for a 3d engine to make a 3d modeller. The engine ought to be simple/easy to use (having documentation, tutorials and stuff). I'm using SDL or Allegro for input handling/etc.

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Using someone elses 3d game engine as the basis for a 3d modeling package will have several hurdles. For example to perform operations on individual vertices the engine must expose vertex data in it's Mesh implementation and most don't do this. Same goes for edges and faces. I'm sure you can do something like reload/rebuild the mesh everytime the user changes it but that's going to effect performance adversely.

Otherwise, I'd say irrlicht has a very complete gui system and the source is well documented for when you go tweak things so if I were going to attempt this that's the route I'd go.

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Quote:
Original post by biscuitz
Which one anti-aliases?
Anti-aliasing is a trivial operation and largely only relevant for the screen representation (it's an averaging technique to minimize the visibility of "jaggies"). You can anti-alias as post-3D processing quite easily, so don't make it a central requirement of your package.

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Irrlicht provides it's own input handling routines IIRC. You may be able to use the input portion of Allegro or SDL with it though it might require some sort of hack to get it all working properly.

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Any decent 3D rendering engine will handle anti-aliasing. Additionally, OGRE provides a default confuration dialog that will automatically prompt user for resolution, color depth, and renderer before launching. All of that stuff is handled for you, and it comes with a pretty nice looking GUI framework also with tons of widgets already supplied. OGRE also provides some simple input handling, which should suffice for a modelling app (just using mouse, keyboard).

I agree with the previous poster. You don't want to use a 3D *game* engine. You just need a scenegraph or rendering engine to eliminate the need to code the complex rendering stuff. The two I listed are very good. OSG is inspired by Performer (I think some SGI guys created it), and OGRE is... well, go check it out.

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Do I have to have an ATI/NVidia card to have FSAA? I got a built in graphics card from Dell. Edit: I tried the FSAA tutorial from NeHe and no antialiasing.:(

Man those engines look more complicated than OpenGL API.

[Edited by - biscuitz on July 31, 2005 9:02:49 PM]

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Here is a list of 215 3D engines that may be useful. There's a lot of info there and hopefully you'll find what you're looking for.

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