3D Engines, past, present and future

We begin with a brief history recap for the benefit of the few websearchers who are genuinely looking for the old websites.

Power Render 4

Version 4 of Power Render was released by Egerter Software in 2001. It was a SDK, middleware offering 2D/3D graphics and audio functions. Chris Egerter wrote:

“The SDK was designed to be extremely flexible and is being used for all sorts of exciting applications and game genres. For example, these features are being incorporated in an ActiveX control (currently in alpha) that will let you display content and develop custom 3D applications for the web and other languages. The ability to store pixel and vertex shader code and constants inside Power Render’s proprietary 3D file format makes it possible to take control of the 3D pipeline without knowledge of C/C++ programming. This technology will be used to distribute content across the web that can take advantage of vertex and pixel shader effects inside your browser using the ActiveX viewer. You can also display animated characters and interact entire BSP or terrain based levels without any programming involved.”

It would create graphics of this quality, which was quite good for 2001.

prsplash3Dengine.ca had activity and useful content in 2001 and 2002. Thereafter, it forwarded to www.powerrender.com. So, 3Dengine.ca was unused after 2002. The logo changed to this, but no further content updates.

Chris Egerter’s Power Render 3D engine website gradually faded in popularity, and from 2008 to 2012, there was nothing available, except a link to his iPhone games website, www.RockingPocketGames.com

In 2014, this website was briefly owned by someone intending to sell radio-control drones.

The future of 3D

Is all of this, just ‘under construction’?

Looks like it. I’m bothered.


Don’t be bothered

This new re purposing of the 3D engine website, is not fully formed in my mind yet, but I’m going to use it to hold some information on the 2014 sate-of-the-art. Unreal Engine 4 and Unity are big things now, and CryEngine is in the picture too.

One or two generations earlier, was Granny Engine by RadGameTools.

Latest Posts

Granny Engine Review

review by: Lawliet


Granny is one of the most efficient and versatile animation toolsets in the industry. The 2.9 version has a new features, but you should realize, that even though the engine is over 10 years old, it continues to have several updates a year, including currently in 2014 when this post is written.
Granny has constantly made life simple for developers. Whether you work in Max, Maya, or others, Granny makes it a easy to export, process, and animate anything that the modellers created. Granny3D has an asset conversion pipeline that has been battle-hardened, and works on every platform.

New Animation Studio

There is a new Animation Studio, and artists and animators like that the fact Rad is moving animation blending and transition functionality out of code and into an environment where they can data-drive it. On the code side, the studio and its underlying runtime have been designed to keep the traditional benefits of Granny, speed and customize-ability.

Although Unity and Unreal Engine get a lot of press, Granny has been around, and used in more than 3,000 games. Some recent titles are well known, such as Guild Wars 2, Forza Horison, Halo 4, Dungeons & Dragons online, Elder Scrolls IV:Oblivion, Even Online, Civilization V, Tropico 4, and Destiny.

And the upcoming new Talking Moose, which is graphically amazing and completely Gaussian-random-number controlled life-like movements, is built on top of Granny. As explained by Dr. Halls, the Moose’s underlying coding needed direct access to everything in memory concerning the model, and it’s real-time orientation of joints, so that sophisticated eye-gaze aiming and morph blending could be handled. It was something like re-creating all the 3D transformations code that 3DSmax or Maya would do internally, and Granny made it feasible to actually do that, relatively easily.

CryENGINE review


CryENGINE for 3D was first launched in 2004, and back then, the only video game available was FarCry. If you’re going to compare it today, there aren’t any kind of documentations at all. Thus, most developers were just self-taught people who tried their best to play around with an unknown piece of technology. The CryENGINE 1.

The Creators

CryENGINE 3 Game Development was made by Paul Reindell and Sean Tracy, Despite the fact the the book cover claims it to be a ‘Beginner’s Guide,’ even the experienced CryENGINE users would find this manual very useful.

The Manual

The book itself was published by PACKY Publishing and is readily available in PDF format, as well as in printed form. Though, for those who are just learning the ropes of game development, it’s recommended to opt for the printed format instead. It has 320 pages that talks about the CryENGINE 3 features that would help you to kick start your new piece of technology. Likewise, there’s no need to worry about being too overwhelmed about the details and information presented, ’cause even the beginners would be able to understand everything easily. The basic, forums, and you could easily move on to the documentation.

The book really begins with a speedy outline what Cryengine is, the place it originates from and for what sort of recreations it was utilized within the past. It likewise provides for you a snappy presentation about the Cryengine 3 Freesdk, which is utilized as a base for all samples over the book, so everybody can play around with them immediately, and as specified before the entire book is illustration based, so you won’t get an excessive amount of exhausting hypothesis.

1266112677_6_FT0_sandbox_editorThe Sandbox Editor

In the wake of getting some data about the Sandbox Editor rudiments the developer will straightforwardly begin to make his/her first level. Guided by the creator it is truly simple and quick to see a few comes about on the screen. The great thing about it is that its not simply “Click here, click there”, the developer will additionally get data concerning why he/she ought to do it like this or about diverse approaches to accomplish the objective. All cases are loaded with screenshots which makes it a considerable measure less demanding to tail them. They are just highly contrasting in the printed form yet you can download the colored screenshots online and in all honesty the nature of the printed screenshots are really more than adequate to take after the cases.


Presently the book begins with the fun stuff: Scripting! This not simply incorporates Visual Scripting (otherwise known as. Flowgraph) additionally the correspondence in the middle of Flowgraph and Lua, debugging Flowgraphs and playing around with the AI.

The following enormous step will be an acquaintance into C++ and how with gather the Game DLL with some code progressions to at long last script a custom Entity, including Scriptbinds to correspond straightforwardly with C++ from inside Lua. Don’t stress on the off chance that you are not piece of the Programmer Species, its elegantly composed and blankets all required data for the samples.

“One of my most gainful days was discarding 1000 lines of code.”
— Ken Thompson



The following piece of the book is about Scaleform (Flash), how to make your own particular HUD (Head-Up-Display) without any preparation, get it diversion and how to test it straightforwardly in the Sandbox Editor with the included UI Emulator. An extremely pleasant, point by point and intriguing segment of the book. As a side note: The writer of this part composed the real center arrangement of the UI utilized within the Cryengine 3 Freesdk, so the developer will without a doubt get some definite data.

The HUD is really the first custom stake (separated from the Entity) the developer will make, so the clear next step is to figure out how to bring significantly more custom holdings into Cryengine. From fundamental static articles, over destructible items to cleaned characters and movements the developer will get a better than average outline about the benefit pipeline in one major section.

Cutscenes and Cinematic Events

Making Real-Time cutscenes and Cinematic Events with custom holdings or existing ones is the thing that the developer will learn in the following part. Invigorating Cameras, quickening Entites and feature catching are simply a couple of catchphrases which are secured. You need to be the following James Cameron? Proceed, you will most likely take in the nuts and bolts to make some cool cutscenes or machinimas yourself.


The last section is about how to debug the amusement and offer it with the outside world. Particularly debugging and getting an outline of the most critical reassure variables to really find the issues in the diversion is an absolute necessity have information for each future Cryengine amusement designer.

Is it Worth Purchasing?

So is this book worth purchasing? Most likely Yes. For a few reasons. To begin with i know the creators. No genuinely, its generally organized and gives the developer all required data without overpowering him/her. I wish i had such a book in 2004 to begin with. It would have spared a ton of experimentation hours… In the event that you purchase such a book as a fledgling you would prefer not to peruse excessively about hypothesis, you need do something earnestly. You need a fitting guide on the best way to attain an objective and you need to accomplish this objective as quick as could be allowed.

Unreal Engine 4 Review

by: Matilda.


Just recently, in GDC 2014 for a 3D engine, the Unreal Engine 4 was presented. In fact, you can get the Unreal Engine 4 for just $19. Likewise, you could also get a full source code access with the help of github. Also, even if you only paid image_unreal_engine_4for the first month, but stopped paying after, you’ll still have an access to the game engine, but the updates and access to the asset store wouldn’t be possible anymore.

Furthermore, by using UE4, you can build for the following OS: Mac, Windows, Android, and iOS. For future versions, it was announced that it can support HTML5, Steam Machine, and Linux. Also, if you haven’t noticed, the engines of a UDK are completely different from the Unreal Engine 4. The latter has a lot of new features and the bugs of the UDK were already fixed, turning it into a new engine that’s considered to be more friendly for the developers.
Upon initial examination, After purchase and registration, you could download the launcher instantly. Your license would be verified and after that, it’ll download automatically and the engine SDK would be installed onto your computer. The launcher has a number of insets, such as:

* Community
* News
* Marketplace – This is similar to a Unity Store
* Learning

LauncherUnreal Engine 4 Launcher

The engine size is around 7GB, and you could also download the Content Examples which would take a space of 3GB. Basically, the Content Samples have a lot of demo scenes that the users can find useful.

Moreover, as you launch the button editor, the first window that’ll welcome you would be the Project Browser, which is similar to the Project Wizard in Unity. In here, you can create a new project, or open an existing one. Also, you can create new projects directly from the editor.

Project BrowserNewProject_FPSExample

The editor window is composed of several standard windows, such as the Content Browser, Scene Outlines, Modes, and Details. You could add additional elements by using the Windows menu.

unreal-engine-4-project-browserTest C++ Project

You can create a test C++ Project in the Unreal Engine 4. The visual studio will open automatically. However, if you’re planning to open the project in the editor, you need to compile the files in the Visual Studio first. After which, the editor will be opened automatically.

It has been noted that the Unreal Engine 4 has outstanding synchronization with Visual studio, that it allows the user to use breakpoints during the game place. Though, if you’re more acquainted with Intellisense, that one also works fine.


2_GitHubBuild From Source Codes

Like what has been mentioned earlier, the user would have access to source codes of Unreal Engine 4 in github and it can be built. For build on Windows, a Visual Studio 2013 is needed.


Despite the fact that it appears very promising, the UE4 is still very professional. It means that it’s also more difficult to understand as compared to Unity. Likewise, there’s no editor made for Linux.


Overall, the Unreal Engine 4 has a lot to offer. For a small amount of $19, you can get a high-end engine that has a number of features and open source. Additionally, Unreal came up with a new ecosystem that has a large number of training materials, content store, and developer community.