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An Archived Managed World This blog has moved to http://www.managed-world.com/blog

What is up? Not much by the looks of it. I'm finally starting to go out and dig up the various game engines written in .NET that I can leverage in the project I'm revisiting (as I'm not really in the mood to reinvent a wheel that has already been re-invented like a hundred million billion times by various college students out there (here's a theory: I think there are more game engine projects out there than hamburgers McDonald's has sold in the entire history of their company)).

So, what did I find? Sadly, not really anything to write home about. I found several projects, they were just in several stages of disarray. Several of them even have had a good amount of effort spent on them in the past. Some of them even show some progress and potential if only they were still active. Let us review ladies and gent's.

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Axiom: practically dead from what I can tell (the source forge project's home page isn't even functional and there are no binary or source files available for download).

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Realm Forge: somewhat active. There hasn't been _any_ news on the main page in quite a while when I visited the site. On top of that, there is very little documentation of any redeemable quality. Sure, there is some auto-generated documentation on the API but actually usage documentation is several lacking. From what I saw on the wiki, there is but one "real" tutorial posted. The extent of the tutorial is a single C# source file where the "tutorial" is embedded in C# comments. Not exactly what I would call a "quality" tutorial. 

Sure, I could go and figure it all out myself. I may even still do that. Just call me spoiled. After working with the numerous .NET libraries and products I have at work, I like to be using a product that is supported and can at least point me in the right direction when things go astray.

To be fair, I'm not entirely disappointed. Realm Forge is looking to put itself forward as "the entire package" and not just a pretty renderer. I think it has some potential in that regard too. It wraps up a bunch of different components in order to package itself as a complete game engine. I just think it has quite a bit of "maturing" to go through until it reaches that point.

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Haddd 3D: it looks pretty and looks like it has potential. The drawback for me? All tutorials and help docs that I could find were written in Spanish. I know that the code should be enough, but I'm on a sojourn to find the "complete package" (or as darn near as I can find to it) and would like to be helped along in the process. Once again, I know I'm a lazy bones so telling me so won't provoke me in the least bit.

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Maybe I've just been out of the loop for that long now (how depressing). The next ones on my list to investigate are Irrlicht and Purple#. I'm hoping they will be a little more promising than the ones investigated so far. Have any of you come across some good .NET-based game engines or 3d engines that you like using?

In the meantime, I think I'm just going to go dink around with Ogre3d in C++ for a while and see what kind of fun I can have. Ciao!

Posted on Tuesday, February 14, 2006 7:04 AM Game Development | Back to top


Comments on this post: Calling all Game Engine developers

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
Don't forget DXdot ( http://dxdot.net/ ) ... at least its progression is consistently slow! :)

Can you elaborate about what you're looking for in a game engine? I'm assuming this is for the Tanks rewrite... or do you have something else in the works?
Left by Jason Mauer on Feb 14, 2006 8:37 AM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
Basically, I'm looking for a well-supported, nearly (or completely) complete game engine that is usable from .NET with minimal effort. I'm also looking for an engine that has a good community following (one of the reasons Irrilicht is on my list) and has a good level of documentation to help developers get up to speed with the technology.

Yeah, this is for the Tanks rewrite. It is also for many future game development projects that I might poke around with. Basically, I've gotten to the point where I'm a little tired of re-inventing the wheel. I think it's fine when you're doing it for fun, but I have fun with a lot of the larger architectural issues (which I can't get to when I'm spending all my time down in the already-infested bowels).
Left by Jason Olson on Feb 14, 2006 8:54 AM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
Axiom is officially dead and also officially rolled into RealmForge. RealmForge's goal is to be way more than just the 3D engine, its an entire game creation toolkit. You should be able to compile Axiom from the RealmForge source without all of the extra stuff that comes with RealmForge.

Last I heard, Purple# was being rewritten to take advantage of .NET 2.0 and prolly doesn't have anything useful to show yet.

Irrlicht is native C++ with .NET wrappers. It looks good but I haven't done much with it since its not native .NET. (This may end up not being an issue.)

Haddd looks good but I haven't had a chance to check it out yet. Last time I looked at the site the source wasn't available anyway.

So yeah, there really isn't a complete native .NET 3D engine that's free and open source.
Left by Ogre on Feb 16, 2006 11:31 PM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
I'm enjoying reading your articles and trying to get my head around C#. I too decided it would be nifty to develop games in.

Are there any 2d game engines available? If not, how about some really good tutorials that take you from complete noob to Chuck Norris The Coder Of 2D Game Engines?

So far it's been a cinch to find basic C# tutorials (woo form objects) but stuff about DirectX is a little less forthcoming.

Cheers!
Left by nih on Feb 17, 2006 12:43 AM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
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Take a look at SDL (for the 2D guy). There should be a .NET wrapper (the URL's escape me atm).
Left by Ogre on Feb 17, 2006 3:05 PM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
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Nih - Thanks for the kind words. Hopefully I'll begin making progress on them again soon :).

Ogre - RealmForge looks like it could be really cool once it matures some more. Purple# does look pretty cool as well. Right now I'm going to mostly investigate Irrilicht (sp?) since it looks like it's well supported and still active.

As for the SDL wrapper for .NET, you can find it here (at least the one I played around with):
http://cs-sdl.sourceforge.net/index.php/Main_Page
Left by Jason Olson on Feb 17, 2006 3:51 PM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
here's alot of game engines and 3d graphic engines for yeah that are done in a .net langauge: http://www.devmaster.net/engines/list.php?start=10&fid=6&sid=2

Left by SN4k3 on Mar 25, 2006 9:36 AM

# re: Calling all Game Engine developers
Requesting Gravatar...
I'm enjoying reading your articles and trying to get my head around C#
Left by DS on Apr 16, 2007 8:14 AM

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