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MarijnStevens

Request some 3D engine game design tips

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I would like some tips about my problemen, I cant explain it well but hopefully people can guide me somewhere.. I got the feeling its a stupid question, but I should ask it anyway because its holding me back. For a long time now I want to make more active 3D games. I never got anywhere with most 3D engines I tried to make ( most just object "viewers" ) Like most people here have read "How Do I Make Games?: A Path to Game Development by Geoff Howland", like I did, a couple of years ago. In between the time I.. really just did that. I made a pong game, some tetris variants, lemming clone, 2D platformer and a couple other kinds, like prototype game concepts. However whenever I tried to think about 3D games I just cant really get started. For example I make the code that setup the window, make some code that controls the camera, render a couple of objects, but in the end I just keep with that object viewer. A landscape model, some box and another .x mesh (directx). No neat structures or anything, the code becomes hard to read. Its not the game design, but as soon as I think about a skybox/skydom/skyplane, quake like levels, multiple geometry I'm just lost (in code). Apparently I just cant figure out how to track my geometry. (I dont have my own geometry data structure yet, I'm writting to a vertexbuffer each time...what I kind of hate at this point. Not something neat like a wrapper that takes care of that, like the .X mesh class. Should I start with that ?) To end it up; I'm at the point of the 3D object viewer, what is next ? Because I have the feeling I want to make a skydome, cloud billboards, water shader, grass shaders, particle systems... All at ones. I'm just lost. Do people know what I am trying to explain ? I wish it was more well defined. PS: The project concept is just a quake like level in DirectX. Just throw information in any (program)language/API to me and I will extrude as must as possible out of it :)

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Sounds like you want to make games, not engines. So why not just use an existing engine. There are plenty for "free" or for cheap: Torque, Unreal, Crysis, C&C3, Source, Unity 3D, Ogre3D

So play around with some demo versions (or if you have a PC game that uses some of those engines, you can already make engine mods)

Then just start making your game instead of "wasting" your time trying to figure out how to put an engine together.

If you want to work on an engine, just say that and we can help you out.

And just as a timing point, if you want to create a good quality 3D engine and have never done so before, expect this project to take ~2+ years depending on how much time you have to spend on it. Using an existing engine: a few months.

-me

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