"What game engine is the best?"
It is a quite frequently asked question. Let's build a simple game (really simple, nothing triple-A comparable) in multiple game engines.
I have some experience with only Unity so I will be learning other game engines on the fly so this series will be also "first impressions".
Let's specify, what game engine needs to comply to in order to be used in this series:
- 3D is supported
- The engine must be for free (at least for personal use)
- Ideally, it should be multiplatform (Mac, Windows, Linux)
- No preference regarding programming languages, but ideally it should be supported by JetBrains products
I prefer code over visual scripting but in case it will be easier to use graphical interface in some engine, I will use it. In other words, I will use the recommended way of scripting.
In term of engines, I will always use the latest stable version if available. If the engine is still in alpha or beta, I will use the latest version available.
What are we going to build?
Let's build a game I called "Fast Cube". It is a game I have work in progress for some time already. It was developed as a mobile game but we will build desktop only experience.
- 3D game with simple graphics
- the player controls a cube
- levels consist of "floating" tiles, each tile has a lifetime that decreases when the player is on the tile
- there are collectables in a form of coins
- user dies when they fall down
- the game has a built-in editor so the player can create their own levels
That is a list of features I will start with. Would you like to see more complicated features? We can discuss in comments. Just consider that I am not a graphic designer or animator 🙂.
We won't need a lot of assets for the game. Let's put them in short enumeration:
- Character - cube primitive
- Tile/Editor tile - cube primitive
- Coin - cylinder primitive
- move sound (some "swoosh" sound)
- coin pickup
- falling sound (long "whistle")
- tile images for editor
- Level files
- it will be saved on the disc as JSON (easier for debugging)
Game editor will look like this:
The game itself will look very similar to the editor. There won't be any blue transparent tiles and no user interface for the editor.
So, what engines will we use?
Let's start in this order:
- Unreal Engine 4
- Torque 3D (if I will be able to compile it for Mac)
Feel free to suggest a game engine you would like to see.
What we will compare?
- editor experience (if any)
- debugging tools
- build tools
- ease of use (importing and using assets, building user interface etc.)
That will be all for this introductory article. Thank you for reading and see you next time with a new article where we will build a game in Unity.
Last but not least: All source code will be available on GitLab.