View Full Version : game engines

Angelo D'Ambros
10-29-2006, 04:04 PM
Could someone suggest a good game engine for mac? Something not so high cost but pretty good and with some game specific dev tool (like AI, levels organization, UI). Something like Beyond Virtual ( a mac version don't seems to exist :bangwall: :bangwall: :bangwall: :bangwall: ).


10-29-2006, 04:39 PM

Once the LightWave Universal Binary is done, and people are busying themselves with singing the praises of NewTek, I plan on writing an in-depth document on game engines and LightWave. However, until then, here's what ya get...

The two biggies are Unity and Torque.


Unity was in its youth when I started on my last game, so I have more personal experience with Torque. Then again, I was a Blender-head when I was working on my Torque based game.

My personal philosophy regarding software design is probably a better match for Unity. I like their Mac-oriented approach. So if I had to do it all over again, I would probably start there. However, Torque has an XBox version as well, and has been used in (I think) a greater number of shipping games.

But both are really, REALLY good. I don't think you'll have a gripe with either one. And both of them have representatives who have dropped by our forums before. I don't have a problem with them taking this opportunity to promote their wares (in the event they choose to do so).


10-29-2006, 07:11 PM
chilton is right, unity and torque are big hitters. if you are determined to 'keep it mac', you can also look into blender game engine which is maturing nicely, and c4 engine by terathon software.

i have licenses for all four, so my opinion, though not necessarily expert is at least informed.

torque: is good for an fps generic design where you create the environment. however, if you decide to be original or deviate at all from the general fps genre, you will need to do some c++ programming at the source code level and you will have to be very proficient. not meant to sound negative, just real. however, the torque game builder, aka 2d engine, is an excellent starting tool for learning game development and you can basically do whatever you can imagine for the most part.

unity: as chilton has said, this engine takes a more 'mac centric' paradigm, meaning, they remove as much of the 'code' level from you as possible and give you access through scripting for game logic and such, while providing a pretty much seemless art and content pipeline for creation. the lack of source code does not imply less power or flexibility, in fact, i think because of the way they have structured their approach, it frees you up. to put it simply, torque is the way you dread game development will probably be like, and unity is the going towards the way you wished it would be in your mind.

either can get you there. how you are geared mentally and internally will determine what path you take.

blender: this engine is flying under the radar at the present moment and being severaly underrated. but it is capable in capable hands. check out the 'silo' car race demo from their site. it implements the bullet physics api, python scripting and has the advantage of being tied to a modeler. so essentially, you could do everything in blender and never have to fraught yourself with worry over exporting this, importing that and the like. blender is different. but don't be afraid, just because a bunch of people who are slow to change or intimidated by different methods or just plain not too smart or motivated, doesn't mean that blender can't get the job done. basically, people on game engine forums complain about the lack of current jazzy features, or super tech lighting or boundless physics and whatever else, but they are either not making games, or aiming to high for their first game or just eternal critics.

c4 engine: this one is remarkable. but it is not for the faint of heart. nor the non-programmer and they make no apologies for it, as well they shouldn't. this engine has power, clean architecture and boundless room to improve. but you must come to the mountain, because the mountain won't come to you. meaning, if you don't have a strong understanding of c++ methodology, then don't bother until you do. but when you do, this engine is a dream to work with.

i've also followed the likes of beyond virtual, lawmaker engine, neo engine, nebula 2 and the likes. if you are willing to compromise, even these are possible choices if you use 'bootcamp' and have a windoze cd.

last but not least dim3: this is a free open source 3d engine. it's tagged as being made for modders and programmers but it is maturing also. it has moved into version 2, and i going through the growing pains of a new more powerful and capable render system. it may seem at first out of the league of the others i have mentioned, but in creative hands much can be gleened from little.

hope this helps...

and i'm looking forward to chilton's document on lightwave and game engines. i must honestly say that i am on the fence right now as far as 3d apps are concerned. i'm waiting patiently to see if newtek will indeed come through with a worthy upgrade in the universal binary, but as of now i am fighting the steadily growing temptation to cut and run to cinema4d, mainly because they have proven themselves as dedicated to the progress of the mac platform by being the first commercial app to have a working universal binary. something the 'big 3' have yet to accomplish. not to mention a seemless pipeline into unity. but i'm not trying to sell ship jumpers. i want lightwave to kick *** as much as the rest of this community. it has never garnered the respect it deserves, but it has stepped on it's own feet many times in trying to get that respect...'8.5 for example'. i don't want to move to cinema 4d only to see newtek finally get it right and make me feel like a traitor, so i am trying to hang on. but i'm only human, and version 10 of c4d is including bodypaint 3 as standard, how long can a guy hold up against pressure like that?

but chilton has been a friendly, open, forthcoming ear to the waiting community. he has even tried his best to help me because my macbook pro doesn't seem to like my copy of lw9 in rossetta. so, out of respect for him and what he predicts for this upgrade i am trying to keep my credit card in my pocket. but i must admit, that i have perused the 'classified' section of the forum, just to see what i might recoup for all the lightwave products i have, and i have quite a few.

here's to hoping the wait is not in vain. hope i at least sort of answered your question. i can see that i got side tracked...i apologize.