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3D engine design concepts

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Hi all, Having worked for too long in the "traditional" programming business, this has now started to affect my inspiration in my hobby projects... :-( In work, I''m used to have requirements specifications, a budget, a project plan, UML designs, and a project manager breathing down my neck, It''s all there, just write the code and you''re home free (maybe not that easy, but you get the point). Now, in my first attempt to write my own 3D-engine (oh not another engine! Really it''s for learning purposes, I figured that the only way to grasp the vast terminology of 3D-programming is to do it all, hence the engine) along with some sort of reference implementation. I''m currently in some requirements definition phase, but the problem is, I do not know what to functionality include and/or exclude from the engine. The question is, what are the most basic functions that an application framework has to provide to earn the title "3D-engine"? Further, what engines/frameworks are considered to be the best (duh, Quake 3), not only by judging frame rate and cool effects, but also the over-all design? Whoa...hope you didn''t fall asleep there...all answers are VERY welcome, as I cannot over emphasize the fact that I''m stuck...and it sucks. // Mario "Use the force, read the source" - Anonymous

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I would have to say that the basic functionality you need are

-Getting Input from User
-A way for objects to talk to each other
-A way of transforming and rendering models
-An effect set that will be implemented(Cube Mapping,Shadow volumnes,etc...)
-A way of keeping track the world geometry
-If the world has many faces a way of reducing for poly count(BSP,PVS, Portals)

Thats just a few things. I would check out he worked on quake.

design something really small and limited to test a prototype

look at the quake source. Very good. Hope that helped.


Not all who wander are lost...

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The Abrash link contained exactly what I have been looking for"

// Mario

"Use the force, read the source"
- Anonymous

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