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      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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sanmk4890

An engine above a game engine

2 posts in this topic

I want to make a 3d modelling engine for browsers. That is , a set of libraries that other developers can use to make 3d modelling software that run on browsers. This modelling engine will help achieve tasks specific to object modelling and exporting it (in browsers)

 

I thought of using existing 3d game engines to build this modelling engine, because it'd make my task easier. Existing 3d engines already exploit WebGL to the fullest, so if I use them I won't be losing out on any WebGL feature. But the key thing is, it makes development much quicker and easier (rather than working on WebGL directly)

 

So in a layered architecture way of representing: 

(1st) Lowest Layer : Web GL

2nd Level Layer : Existing 3d game engine

3rd Level Layer : My 3d modelling engine

4th Level : Products/Software that use the 3rd layer (the modelling engine)

 

Is that a reasonable/smart decision? Or should I just make my engine work directly above Web GL?

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In general, when a good, ready-made library exists for a task, it's wise to use it to save time on development, just like you said.

 

However, you must be careful when evaluating the 3D libraries (Three.js probably being the most prominent). Are they actually as feature-rich and mature as they may seem on first glance? In your specific task, do they actually help, or do they rather limit you by forcing their own abstractions onto you, which may be more complex than those defined by WebGL itself? A modelling application is not a typical use case for a (game-like) 3D library, that is usually geared toward displaying pre-existing, mostly static content. That's not a deal-breaker though, as usually 3D libraries also provide some kind of API for arbitrary runtime modification of geometry. Whether they do that particularly smartly or not doesn't matter (performance-wise) before the scenes get complex (thousands of objects, millions of vertices..)

 

Also, when you're talking of a layered approach such that other developers should be using your modelling engine, then you'll have to learn the 3D engine you choose extremely well to inspire confidence in them, and to be able to solve problems that may occur in any of the layers. If you write the WebGL interfacing yourself, you'll (hopefully) become familiar with the potential issues earlier and gain a deeper understanding.

 

Another example: in the open source engine I've started, SDL is used for multiplatform windowing, audio & input. It becomes sort of a "black box" for those tasks, and if there's a complex enough problem on some of the supported platforms, I may not know enough of that platform and SDL internals to successfully solve that problem. Well, that's not such a big deal, as the engine's MIT licensed and the license disclaims all fitness for any purpose, but it'd be different if it was a product with a price tag...

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Also, when you're talking of a layered approach such that other developers should be using your modelling engine, then you'll have to learn the 3D engine you choose extremely well to inspire confidence in them, and to be able to solve problems that may occur in any of the layers. If you write the WebGL interfacing yourself, you'll (hopefully) become familiar with the potential issues earlier and gain a deeper understanding.

 

Thanks AgentC. This had not crossed my mind!

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