I know that Collada support in JME is now history, and use of MD5 is being recommended. Are the reasons for this that the MD5 format is superior, or simply that there isn't anyone willing to work on the Collada support?
If you had both full Collada and MD5 support in JME which one would you use and why?
I'd definetely use Collada. It contains a whole scene you save with models, lighting, materials etc… This is why it is so hard to import and export properly.
MD5 only contains weighted meshes/jointanimations so it's only good for animated models. If you use md5 you gonna need another format to import everything else.
as the writer of md5importer, id say i would like to use collada if possible. but not for the same reasons HouseMDave said.
the reason y id like to use collada is because the collada exporter for both maya and max actually supports plugins that allow artists to create animations and skeleton systems much faster than using plain bones. md5 exporters only accepts plain bone structures with alot of other requirements.
so put it this way, fi collada works with jme, the animation and modeling process will be much faster than using md5.
however, i would never create everything inside maya, max or blender simplely coz those tools r too generic. u wont be able to handle the stuff u need to handle with jme. and this is where engine supporting tools come into place.
one of the most important factors of a good engine is how developed its supporting content creation tools are. jme lacks greatly on this one which is y we here at work and also on another commercial project r creating a world editor tool that allows u to dynamically sculpting terrain, paint splatting textures, create entities with pre-created models, particles, light and so on.
to conclude all this, collada is only better coz it makes artists life easier.