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distilledwater71

2D vs 3D for a solo programmer

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Hello everyone. I would like to know your thoughts on which type of game, 2D or 3D, would be easier for a single programmer to make well. Story is the most important aspect of a game to me, so I do not have a preference for either 2D or 3D, I just want to go with whichever one is easier and will give me less stress and technical problems in the end.

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Depends on your experience. Are you an experienced 3d programmer or a 2d one. If the latter do 2D if you want to finish quickly as 3D will end up being a steep learning curve. 

 

 

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To be honest, both can be difficult. I think overall though, 3D is harder. If you're going to make something very story based in 3D, eventually you'll have to deal with creating, loading, and animating 3D models. Basically it all comes down to your goal. Do you want to make something quickly, or do you want to learn.

If you have limited game programming experience, creating a 2D or 3D game from scratch could take a long time either way. If this will be your first project and want to start from scratch, go 2D.

If you want to make something quickly in 2D, try game maker or rpg maker. If you want to make something quickly in 3D, find an engine. If you make it from scratch, unless you have a lot of experience, just coding the basics could take up to a year from my experience.

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If you use an engine, there's not much difference. All the logic will be there for you, but I guess you want to write everything yourself.

Then I'm afraid 3D is going to be more difficult. Just try to draw why a bug happens, with the collision vectors in 3D. Now do the same with a 2D system. Anyone thinking this is not more difficult clearly has never took a shot at it!

 

Personally I suggest to have a try with 2D first, it seems there's a large "retro-wannabe"  community you might be able to tap on. To be honest, I think 2D minimality is ideal for story driven games.

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 I would like to know your thoughts on which type of game, 2D or 3D, would be easier for a single programmer to make well.

 

Answer it yourself by answering this question:

 

Am I any good at making 3D Art? (Animation, Models, UV Mapping) or could I Put the Time into learning how to-do this.

 

If your art skills are like mine (almost non-existent) then forget 3D, it adds far too much overhead graphics wise to make a game "well".

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If you're using a game engine, it doesn't matter so much, They will have all the 3d math functions already made, collisions, maybe physics, etcetera 

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It depends on how you are developing your game.   It is much easier to develop a 3D game in Unity or UDK than it is to write your own cross platform 2D games engine.

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I do not want to write the engine myself. I would gladly use an engine that already exists. With that in mind, would 3D still be more difficult to program than 2D?

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In general 3d is more difficult to handle than 2d, simply due to the added axis.  General programming parts of games suddenly have an added level of complexity.  Any vector math has the additional axis.  You go from simple top-down rotations to possibly needing quaternions (or some other measure) to avoid gimble lock, if this applies to your game.

 

But, some general concepts are the same. For example, for platformers, if you use a form of raycasting to check if your character is on the ground, you can likely follow the same method in 3d.  The calculations will be more complicated due to the 3rd axis, but the concept is the same.

 

Lastly, and I'm guessing you already know this, the art is usually more complicated.  Depending on the artist, some are better with 2d, and some with 3d.  For example, I've never gotten to where I can pixel much of anything, but I can model "acceptably" at least.  The other thing is that generally, more is expected of 3d games, since that is currently the "norm."  It seems that there is less acceptance of "programmer" art than with 2d.  Also, 2d games can more easily be "stylized" like neon style, or the desktop picture thing I've seen somewhere...this doesn't exist easily in 3d.  So you will likely have to make more "real" art instead of something stylized.

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