Is my game fit for Panda3d?

Alright, im pretty tired after all that. Iv been searching for hours, reading here and there, and then coming to Panda3d and looking all over the forum and manual. Iv done this research before but last time i couldnt register :/.

I have Unreal Engine 3 and it seems like a nice engine, but i think i need a less complicated engine. I dont like all the fancy things UE3 has, all the fish-eye FOV and blurry effects, i think it looks stupid with all the graphic tricks they use. Doesn’t all that fake eye candy actually make the game run slower? The build time takes forever :confused: even with just a simple terrain with hills and valleys and a simple outdoor sunlight, with no meshes or decoration. But the terrain maker is very nice, one of the best. But im willing to give that up if Panda3d can do what my game requires out of the box with the least of having to program new features, cause im not a programmer, though i did study c++ enough to write retarded working programs :slight_smile: I need your suggestions.

Really im just trying to have options, i can work with Unreal Engine 3, i just dont like it, and it does too much for a simple demo i want that it actually hinders my development.

So my game is simple, but it involves a lot of interaction and simulation. Nothing complicated, just a lot of interaction implemented as the game matures. Im just wondering how much can Panda3d do, how much does it already has for me. I assume it has no AI at all? And how should i approach Panda3d especially when im an artist? One thing im worry about is the animation ability, the .egg format seems to be similar to .x format which i remember is a very bad format for animation. And can my maps be open ended, like big enough for a whole landscape, and not just a city. Or can i really create a somewhat complex game as the engine is.

Since im not a programmer i need your suggestion first from what i have told you before i dive into Panda3d and really dig into it.

and welcome to panda3d.since you didnt really ask any clear questions i’m trying to guess what you where asking.

lots of interaction. dunno exactly how you define that. but if you need to read input devices. panda provides a lot of them. from mouse, keybord,trackballs, up to motion capturing equipment(VR-stuff. never used it myself).

about the AI . your guess is correct. it has no AI. some people wrote path-finding algorithms for panda. what panda has is a pretty neat Finite State Machine you can use to write your AI.

the egg format is actually pretty flexible. it can handle animations, bone and vertex based. both together if you want. it can also handle LOD stuff, multitexturing , material information. pretty much everything you need.
there are good exporters for max, maya and blender. aside from that panda reads a ton of other formats such as 3ds, .x ,obj, and a few more. collada support comes with the next version of panda.

bout the maps. panda doesnt really know the concept of maps. you just load models as maps, you can load and unload them as you like. during runtime. so it can handle outdoor levels quite well. you can write a small paging code which loads and unloads parts of your world automatically. allowing virtually unlimited world sizes (your hardware is your limit).

i also like to point out a few other things you might not have thought about so far.
level editors: so far panda doesnt have its own one (there is one under active development thought not finished). so you would have to use an application such as blender/max/maya to make your levels.

performance: panda is quite powerful. but panda doesnt prevent you from breaking performance. if you have a poorly organized scene it will break performance big time. now for the good new. panda comes with pstats, an excelent profiling tool which helps to track down bottlenecks within minutes.

if you describe what you intend to do we can give you more detailed information about what is easy , moderate or hard to do with panda.

bout coding. if you already know c++ and the concept of OO programming. then python will be no problem for you. especially as coding artist, panda is propably the best thing you can get (point&click-game-studios-left-aside)


Thanks buddy, that helped a lot. Panda3d is shaping up to be pretty nice.

For my game i was talking about interaction in game. Im sure a programmer can simply extend the interaction ability, as complex as he wants, by enhancing the code and it would be limited by his knowledge of coding. So far Panda3d seems to be very open to that.

So what is the most advance game that has ever come out of Panda3d? I saw Pirates of the Carribean Online (POTC:O) but that game is actually quite simple.

About my game, it really revolves around interaction with AI, objects, environment. Im not going for a Second Life idea, i am aiming for a game where there is simply a lot of interaction with the world. I plan to add these feature bit by bit, and sorta reaching a simulation of life. As complicated as it seems, it just need a lot of labor! I have visited a few projects sorta with the same idea but they are really specific and limited and i dont want to push them by telling them this and that. I want mine to be a life long project if thats what it takes. And its a personal project.

Thats why i chose UE3, but the truth is, it doesnt matter which engine cause i dont care about eye candy effects. UE3 promise a lot and it gives a lot but then sometimes games just dont need that much, and all the bloated feature can really slow a game’s development down. Especially for a 1 guy team. As long as the engine is open to being modify to allow more possibility then its all good for me. And Panda3d seems to fit that.

I assume a more precise battle system like attacking limbs and such can be implemented. I guess anything can be done since Panda3d can be extended…

Help me however you can guys. Im serious about my project, otherwise i wouldn’t even try.

Just wanted to pop in here and actually provide you a different perspective on this bit I quoted.

I actually decided to check out Panda3D because, like you, I’ve been looking for an engine that would allow me to learn Python (and the engine) and make some relatively simple games.

I chose PoTCO as my “proving grounds” to see what the engine could handle. If it sufficiently could handle the rigors of a large, persistent online world that needed to support hundreds, if not thousands, of simultaneous players interacting, fighting, talking and milling all over the place, then it could certainly handle what I intend to use it for.

Well, I started with a trial account, but ended up getting a full subscription for it, I enjoyed it so much heheh.

That said, PoTCO is not a simple game. It’s a MMORPG which, by nature, are very large and complex beasts. Despite its looks, PoTCO is no less complex than many other MMOs I’ve tried (and I’m a MMO-holic, so I’ve tried many :-p).

A pretty involved weapon system (the voodoo doll is particularly fun). Ship combat which can be either fought solo, or with an entire crew - one person steering the ship, the others manning the cannons, or harpoons in some cases to board a ship once it’s defeated. It has some fairly elaborate environment designs which, if you pay attention to how they’re layed out, you can get some good ideas from - especially in terms of maintaining good performance as was mentioned in an earlier reply.

In all, I just kinda wanted to give you a different perspective about just how complex PoTCO is and how it reflects on Panda3D’s ability as an engine.

PoTCO doesn’t implement the extreme detail and DX9/10-all-over that UT3 shows off… but if it’s good enough to handle a MMO then, methinks, it’s sufficient to handle a smaller, simpler game.

You know i forgot about the online (MMORPG) feature of POTCO so i mistaken it only for the game play which i watched only through videos so your right, its not as simple as i said at least in the networking part.

Thanks and yeah thats why im here checking out Panda3d cause i was never attracted to all the fancy of UE3, it was the Unreal Script and the terrain maker that i really liked a lot about UE3. But for my game, i think Panda3d is strong enough and appears to be just what i need.