Hi for all
Thanks for this site. Always helping people. I would like your help now.
I'm an advanced C++ developer, average OpenGL developer. I'm using Ogre in my work to create simulators.
I've acquired good knowledge in these softwares. But I want more. Much more.
Like you know, we have very good free game engines like Ogre( graphics engine ), BlendELF, Lynx and so on. And we have very good commercial game engines like C4, Unity, Shiva, with a very accessible price.
This is the point. I don't know what direction to follow. Is a good idea to adopt one of these engines and study it or create your own?
Another thing: is a good idea to create a game using the existing free tools to acquire knowledge and after this, start to create a game engine?
People, based on you experience what do you recommend?
I think that if you knowledgable enough and together with a team of pros, you can make some useful tools instead of competing in the already crowded game engine market.
For instance, there are two thing seemingly lacking but I think that they are in demand in the market.
1) a Terrain tools which is capable of joining adjacent terrian cells to make a much larger world. For example, Unity (or Torque?) provides a Terrain tool which draws terrain maps in the size of, say, 2km x 2km by default. By far no game engine provides tools to join these 2km x 2km small maps into a large world. Artists or scripters are left on their own to join up those maps.
And I don't think it's difficult to make a tool to join up the adjacent terrain map cells more smoothly, as I think that just some smart heightmap calculations and a smart UI are good enough to allow the designs to hammer or smoothen the boarders of the adjacent terrain cells.
Then I think that you can sell them as add-on tools or plug-ins for those existing game engines.
2) a 3D character generator
It is really time consuming to draw up to standard 3D character models. In MMORPG games such as WoW, and especially the recent Aion they have a built-in character creator/generator to allow players to generate their unique char toons. It should be money making to sell the character creator as a standalone package.
With such a character creator, designers no longer need to create serious models in 3Ds Max and the like, they simply run the package to generate the toons for them in a minute with the basic animations. The designers can even embed such a char generator into their games for the players to generate the toons. All they need to do is just to pay for the licence to use the package to include it into their games.