I’m choosing a game dev engine and have narrowed it down to Panda 3D, Unity, and Unreal 3 (UDK). I really like a lot of what is being offered by Panda but have a couple of questions…
I noticed to run Unity games within a browser the end user needs to install a unity plugin. This is a bit of a turnoff for me. Does Panda run in the browser without such a requirement? And if not, what does it require?
How easy (or possible) would it be for Panda games to be ported to something like WiiWare or XBox Aracde compatability? Or Droid/iPhone? I know there are license requirements of course on those but as far as the software itself would the path to those platforms be feasible?
Panda does require a web plugin to be installed, as does any 3-D engine out there. There is not currently a commodity 3-D engine that comes pre-installed on every user’s browser. If you really wish to run without asking the user to install a plugin, you are pretty much limited to AJAX or Flash today. (HTML5 may offer some hope for the future, but there’s a lot that still needs to happen before that’s a reality.)
As to other platforms you mention, Panda has not yet been ported to any of them (other than iPhone, which is in progress). A port of the engine to any of these platforms is perfectly feasible, of course, and in some cases not even very hard; but someone will have to do the work.
Thanks for the reply. Rather than start a new thread I’ll add another question here… I’ve worked with the UDK (Unreal 3) some and it seems very hard wired toward individually loading levels. I’m designing something in an “open world” style (ala Grand Theft Auto, Elder Scrolls Oblivion etc). Is there some facility in Panda for that or is it just a matter of me custom programming the buffer load zones as people move around etc.? Thanks again.
Panda is basically a blank slate in terms of how your game behaves. It has no sense of a “level” such as UDK does, you just load and unload geometry (“models”) as desired.
In my game I divide the world into a grid and display the unit the player is in as well as the surrounding units. I do this just for rendering performance, I load all the models up front.
Panda does support loading models in the background, so you could definitely do such a thing as stream loading areas of the world as the player moves about.
But yes, this would be done in your game code, there is nothing inherent to Panda as far as I am aware that would be like a streaming level.