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Mafioso

Download engine or make it?

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Main question: Download engine or make it?

Can one man make 3D game engine and how long it takes with DirectX? Is it worth to make it? Hard to make game with downloaded engine?

If someone can answer these questions I will be grateful.

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First off, have you ever made a game before?

If so, making an engine is a great learning experience, although it can take awhile.

If not, make some simple games before moving onto anything too complex.

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Honestly, don't bother making an engine for anything serious unless you have a very specific valid reason to not use a pre-existent one. No, learning experience isn't a valid reason. Technical or legal issues could be, though, although be very careful when you check this. Considering you're asking if it'd be OK or not to make an engine, I'm ruling out the technical issues one too since you probably don't know enough about this =P

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I'm learning now how to load XFile, cameras, animation, light, matrices. Do I need it if I use downloaded engine?

P.S. Sorry if it's a dumb question, I'm beginner [smile]

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I am creating my own engine and have been working on it since 2004. Currently reworking my scripting virtual machhine into something that I can compile with LLVM. Got the basics working but this part progresses slowly because it is hard to debug.

Currently I got
Blender export/import
Collision detection
Simple particle system (non GPU) and not yet integrated in engine.
GUI stuff like scrollbars, editboxes buttons,list, combobox.
Sound (record and playback) using openAL
Meshes (animation rigid and bones)

But since you do not apparently feel a real urge to write it yourself (otherwise I don't think you would ask the question), you probably want to download one. Maybe ogre (free open and some commercial games have been made with it).

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Quote:
Original post by Mafioso
Main question: Download engine or make it?
That is entirely up to you.

If you make an engine, you will also be making a game using that engine just to verify that it works. So ask it this way:

Step 1: (optional) Create a game engine that handles low-level work, and use it for at least one game.
Step 2: Make a game with it's menus, logic, levels, graphics, sounds, UI, etc.


I recommend skipping step 1.

Quote:
Can one man make 3D game engine and how long it takes with DirectX? Is it worth to make it? Hard to make game with downloaded engine?
Yes, many games used DirectX. Many take advantage of the 3D and 2D rendering components, others just use audio components.

How long it takes depends entirely on the kind of game you want, its size and scope, and your existing setup.

The annual AAA iterative titles require 30+ developer work-years for each release. Most major games require 100+ developer work-years to complete.

Obviously as a beginner you won't be developing MW2 by yourself. Looking at the credits it took 16 programmers, 23 designers, 22 artists, 10 animators, 3 audio, 9 writers, 3 producers, and all the other support staff, QA, and post-production people. Just in development time you are looking at a two full years, totaling 172 work-years to develop while using existing tools and technologies by experienced developers.

You will need to figure out how much you can realistically do over any length of time with the assets you have.

Many programmers start out with clones of games like Pong to learn the basic mechanics. Then they move to games like Tetris for more complex rules. Later, some end up moving toward clones of Pac-Man or basic side-scrollers which require level editing tools, more complex graphics, and additional game logic.

Anything more complex requires a team to complete in a reasonable time. One reason is that a team can have different areas of expertise, another is that you can do work in parallel. The team can be small with just 2-5 people, but having a small group dramatically increases the amount you can do.

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Don't make an engine.

Either make a game with an engine or make a bunch of games without an engine.

a game is not like a car so the "engine" is really an awful methaphor, a game runs just fine without a proper engine.

The engine is essentially a set of code and tools that can be shared between different games so the best way to make your own is to make the games and then refactor and separate the parts that can be reused. (If you start by making an engine you're very likely to end up with something that isn't really usable anyway)

As for making a game with DirectX without using an engine, it can take anywhere from a few hours (snake/pong/etc) to a few years.

If you're making snake or pong i'd advice against using an engine (unless you are making snake/pong to learn how the engine works) but for anything thats even remotely complex an engine will save you tons of time.

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Thanks for your answers, I really appreciate them and I like the idea to make game without an engine [lol]

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