Making your own Game Engine? Here’s how

By Chris Nash

Before I get into details, let me ask you a question:

What is the definition of a “game engine”?

game engine is a software application, or suite of applications, that aids in the building of a video game. It itself, is not a video game. It’s not something you play. It’s a tool you use to create a video game.

Think of it like a spatula. A spatula is not a meal. A spatula can be used to create a meal, but you can’t eat the spatula. It doesn’t taste good. But you can use it to help make something that does.

Some of the better known game engines, including some defunct ones 

Have you used any game engines?

It’s unlikely that you have, or you wouldn’t be asking this question. Before creating a hammer, you’ll have to have some experience using hammers:

  • You have to know what they’re used for
  • You have to know how they feel
  • You have to know what features are important to the user

And most importantly:

  • You have to have an idea why any existing hammers are insufficient for your needs

Why create a hammer that’s exactly like 5000 other types and brands out there? They have brand recognition and an installed user base. You don’t. What makes your hammer better than all the others?

How are the existing game engines insufficient?

Most of the popular game engines are free until you earn a significant profit. Some are free no matter what. What do they lack that you feel you need to create a new one?

And why do you need to create a new game engine just for AAA game development? Most game engines are appropriate for AAA development and regular game development.

I’m sorry, OP, but from your question it’s clear that you don’t have significant experience with game development OR game engines. You can’t start from ground zero and decide you’re going to develop a AAA game engine. It doesn’t work that way.

And it’s not possible for a single person to develop a AAA game engine. They’re developed by large teams of people, and for good reason. There’s simply too much to do for a single person to develop solo.

Like I said, this is the type of question where the answer is: “If you have to ask, you can’t do it.” If you could do it, you wouldn’t need to ask.

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