This time round I intend to go full 3d, taking advantage of WebGL, and make a desert strike style game. I considered starting from scratch, as I did with Manic Spaceman, and writing my own engine to power it all, however given that I’ve next to no 3d experience I thought I would reduce the scope a little and use an engine that’s already out there. After about a week of research I’ve settled for Three.js – I say “settled”, but it’s actually shaping up to be a pretty awesome engine. There’s are a few decent engines out there, all obviously in their infancy, but having reviewed the feature set and looked at the demo’s and read around other developers experiences, Three feels like the best choice. The other’s I considered were;
The Short List
I only considered open source offerings and looked for engines which
- were still being actively developed (!)
- seemed performant with high poly counts
- handle shadows/ reflections
- exposed access to GLSL
- UV Mapping support
- be relatively stable.
It was surprising how many engines had broken demo’s on their site, which never bodes well, but on the whole, they are all good offerings with almost all of them fulfilling my requirements.
While building my game, I shall be working through some OpenGL tutorials I found- a port of the well known NeHe OpenGL tutorial set, on LearningWebGL.com, which should put me in good stead to build my next game totally from scratch.
I shall post updates as I have something to show. So far I’ve written a HeightMap generator which works from a greyscale bitmap to build terrains, and I’m currently working on getting the model to follow the landscape; I’ve a long road ahead!