Engine project looking for a home

Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by lostastronaut, Sep 24, 2019.

  1. lostastronaut

    lostastronaut New Member

    Sep 24, 2019
    Likes Received:
    I'm a professional software developer and a graphics enthusiast. Earlier this year I left Smith Micro as the lead developer of Poser 3D Character Animation Software. This famous piece of software had its heyday in the mid-90s, and is responsible for a lot of the technologies behind content that made it into console gaming in the 2003 era. I also released a game engine and ran a series of tutorials for it called Pixitron that outlines an approach to multiplayer game making on the web. https://lmgtfy.com/?q=pixitron
    This other engine, a 12-year epic, is largely ground up but yes it does rely on WinAPI, OpenAL and some other optional libraries, but most of the code is essentially "from scratch" -- built very much on the ZeroTypes library that is a part of Handmade
    Anyway, now that I've moved on from my job at Smith Micro, it's back to moonlighting as Lost Astronaut (lostastronaut.com) ... I picked up my old game engine a few weeks ago and decided I needed to take things in a new direction. However, I've spent 12 years on it and for a long time I held on to it with white-knuckle strength.
    For the 10th time over the past few years, a few hours ago I thought about releasing the 12-year-old project as open source.
    Every time I go to release this engine, thuogh, I worry no one will see it, and if they do see it, they'll just run away. I know it has some serious value (there's a reason I haven't released it yet), but it's locked into a certain technology level (Windows, 32-bit) and as I've started to move features into Qt to support a wider array of platforms, I guess I realized it's going to be entirely different but I'd like to release the 32-bit version of my engine if it gets some traction.
    So, I'm wondering what you think about this? The engine is written in C++, uses OpenGL, builds readily on Windows in free versions of Visual Studio 2017, and may be too big for Github but I'm not sure yet. I spent the 1990s writing MUDs and the 2000s doing all sorts of different things in and out of gaming, but mainly made money on the Web until 2007 when I went all-in on my graphics hobby and set out not only to write a game, but also to build "the encyclopedia of graphics routines" in what became a massive 1900 class super monster codebase that, to this day, builds with an almost flawless execution, and can do a very wide range of things using OpenGL, OpenAL, and about 80 other libraries that I explored. It's the "ultimate" starting place for a C++ Win32 OpenGL project complete with multiple UIs, image processing, texture uploads, vbos of varying flavors, GLSL, graphics systems, 3D file support, you name it. I released some of the shaders from this engine (and some of the source graphics used in the shaders) (modified for GameMaker) as a pack called GML-Pro https://github.com/h3rb/gml-pro a few years ago, but it got buried when GMS2 came out.
    I used my engine to launch a moderately successful 3D printing company, some of it made its way into Poser, and it's just a lot of accumulated work not only by me but some very famous people who I collaborated with years ago when building the engine in the early days. It also has a commonality in the code that is powerful, but also many approaches with different results for everything from color manipulation, to fonts, to the way you organize worlds in 2D.
    My questions for you are:
    1) As a reader of these forums: Are you interested in this at all? Do you want to learn more? Is this a project you'd contribute to? How would you contribute to it? Does it have value?
    2) Do you have any idea how I might avoid it hitting the bin? How can we keep this open source from being just another pile on the heap? How can a community form around it?


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