I’ve been poking around at the edge of 3D game development for a long time. The engines I have run across are:

  1. Descent ][
    This engine was released a thousand years ago and I kicked its tires a little bit. There’ve also been all those Doom/Quake engine releases. But there’s so much newer stuff. Let’s move on…
  2. Torque Engine
    I noodle around on the garage games site on occasion, playing with the idea of getting the Torque engine. I was always a Tribes fan and access to the engine always seemed like a good idea. Sounds like they’ve been working on it some.
  3. Unreal Engine
    You’re not going to license this for a stand-alone game anytime soon, without selling your house, but there are great tools to help you create a mod that can run on top of an Unreal Tournament installation, which is just about as good. If nothing else you can get a feel for the quality of a top-shelf professional product. And you can get the job done quickly since just about EVERYTHING you need is already available. One problem: 2004 (available, lots of mileage) or 2007 (not even out yet)? Also, Half-life has a similar toolset available.
  4. SDL
    In my last post, I mentioned my friend John’s 2D space shooter, Terminus Est. He’s using SDL, which handles a lot of gaming issues (sound, inputs, etc). This isn’t an engine, but you can gain low-level access to 3D hardware through OpenGL.
  5. Ogre
    I recently stumbled upon Ogre, an open source graphics engine that looks like a whole case of whoopass. This demo from “Game Academy” students has me crying on my knees like a little schoolgirl.
  6. IOQuake3
    (From John, thanks!) Here is an OSS 3D-engine based on the Quake 3 engine. Are you ready to make a cross-platform FPS? -J

Then there’s all the modelling tools to play with… UnrealEd, Maya PLE, Modo, blender, oFusion, etc… and which work best with what engine, as far as meshes, scripting, shaders, etc…

Focus, grasshoppa. The only way for me to get anywhere with any of this is to set up a specific small goal and try to steal time to work on it. John says I should port his game to linux, sounds like that should fit the bill. After that, perhaps I can weld in Ogre into SDL. And there is always Unreal modding to temp me with a quicker route to 3D nirvana.


  1. SquidBoy says:

    Wurde Up – get to work! 🙂

  2. m says:

    I added your IOQuake3 suggestion. And now we’ve finished the Terminus Est port. Time for the next step!

Leave a Reply