Help with simulation project

Hi, im new to this forum and to panda3d as well (btw, i apologize if i am in the wrong subforum).

Im working on a new project , along with a few of my university’s teachers. We are trying to build a simulation module for heavy construction machines (like bulldozers or tycoons), and i dont know which tool to use. I tried DELTA3D a few days ago, but didnt convince me, so i got a few questions for u guys, i hope u can help me :smiley:.

  1. Will PANDA3D be able to handle several physical calculations without losing performance?
  2. Can PANDA3D read external data (like a text file, database, or another non PANDA3D program)?

Well, that’s all i can think of right now, like i said, i’d appreciate if u guys could help me, thx!

1: you will loose performance by using physics anyway (like using other features as well). it’s just dependant on how many objects you have and what type they are (mesh type is cpu-time intensive, spheres are fast). If you use accelerated physics (search the forums for the aeiga module) you can have way more objects then normally. but it heavily depends on your requirements. if you can keep the fps above 60, the lost performance isnt important anyway…

2: panda3d can read images, 3d formats (egg,.x), movies and other things. but no text files. this is where you need python, it can read text files, lots of databases, can run other programms etc…

Panda has a fairly simple and limited physics system built-in. Panda has also been combined with two other physics libraries: ODE, and PhysX. Also, there is some work underway to include ODE with Panda3D.

Ty very much for the help. I got a newbie question now :smiley:.
This 3d modeling scenario is new to me, so i have no idea how to create a model, in this case, a heavy machine (like those from construction). I’ve read you can download models from the internet, but i think im gonna need to build my own model(s) for this project.

You can find models on the internet. But in a lot of cases they are not modelled for games. This means they (often) have a huge amount of polygons. There are 3d modelling softwares (like blender) which can reduce the polygon amount, however it may make the models bad-looking. Modelling a object yourself is usually the way to go.

If you start modelling you have to note that it does take time to learn that. I often recommend blender for modelling, it’s free (open-source) and powerful. It just has a (very) steep learning curve. There are other 3d modelling softwares but most of them are very expensive. There are student licenses available for some of them, however once you finish studying you will loose the license, and you will have to switch again. So overall i’d recommend to take the blender challenge.

Btw. it’s possible to export egg files (panda3d model format) from maya, blender, 3ds max. “.x” files are also supported directly by panda, which can be exported by lot’s of different softwares. it’s best if you read the manual / search the forums on this topic for more information.