Newbie S.O.S. - Indecisions and Questions

Hi jecs. Thats a nice long post you have there :slight_smile: No reward through, I am sure there have been longer ones :)  I am no expert but I will post my thoughts here in case you scared the smart guys away:

2. 3d models - I think there are 3 options available for you - Collada, Ogr3d XML and md5.

Collada is in XML format as far as I know, but it has some importing problems in jME - as it is a very extensive format, not all functionality is supported and people frequently post on the forum asking for help.

Ogre3d XML should also be… duh… XML. The importer is being developed currently by MomokoFan and Ender. You would require a special exporter for whatever 3d modeller you will use though… I am fairly certain ogre 3d is not an industrial standard format that is natively supported by 3d modelers.

md5 - most actively developed model format ATM probably. I do not think it is XML, but others can comment on that. There are 2 importers developed in parallel - MD5 reader 2 and MD5 Importer.

Some links:

  • Some info I have jotted down on modelers in the WiKi
  • Animated models - which format and modeler?
  • Any suggestions for animated models

    As to the modeler tools themselves, you should probably pick the one you are most comfortable with. As much as I have heard, Blender is not really more powerful than Max and Maya… just has a steeper learning curve… On the other hand there are lots of help-materials on the net because it is free.

    3. Communication issues - I really think you should take a look at JGN. It is being developed by darkfrog mostly. When creating games it is in competition with project DarkStar, but it really sounded to me like JGN would suit your needs better. Anyways here is a discussion thread about the benefits of either library.

    1. GUI - well cannot really comment on the swing issues - I use FengGUI myself and flirt with GBUI. No room for a third.

    It sounds like a very interesting project you have there and I hope you can keep us updates as you move along. Also I hope other members will find time to comment on the questions you posted :slight_smile:

    Regards and good luck to you

Don't forget about milkshape3D model support, although its based on an older system, it still works pretty well; and milkshape3D is a fairly simple program to learn.


First of all, thanks for your help!! They were an excellent starting point…  :slight_smile:

I followed your advise for the 3d models and started some kind of case study in order to help me deciding which one could fit best my needs. I tried to understand some features and compatibility issues of some 3d model file specs…I tested Collada 1.4.1, MD5, MS3D and X3D in some aspects that I found important in order to develop my project “pacifically” (avoiding making new specs and use as much implemented features as I can). The first result is here:

PDF: | Excel:

In this first analysis, I focused on file specs and not to much in Import/Export limitations but still made some tests. I know this is a very immature analysis since I’m not concerned about all 3D modeling is about but I will try to enrich this study over the times…I will now test more deeply the model import/export to/from jme and I hope to make my final decision meanwhile (Collada is winning so far XD).

Though this is a first draft, If the table don’t make sense to you, please tell me. Just have in mind that I’m not developing a game but a Simulation software and the mesh, materials and other issues may not be so important as the ones I focused…When I started this search I had in mind to find some major features that could make robot simulation simpler (like joints and physics constraints for a simpler direct and inverse kinematics implementation).

And please, give me your opinion (should I add some other file format? I ignored some important issue? There’s some incorrect info in the table? …) …they will be more than welcome!  :smiley:

Very nice table. I think we should draft one to include all the formats that can be imported into jME. Well, once version 2-0 is more mature :slight_smile:

Yes, Collada is very powerful. However before committing yourself to it, you really should try quite a few test-cases to make sure it can do what you want out of the box… or be prepared to do some importing-coding. The current Collada importer was developed initially for NCSoft internal use. It is specifically written with their art pipeline in mind. Fortunately for us, it was committed back to the community. Unfortunately for us, none of us have the exact exporters NCSoft has for creating their Collada models. Anyways as I said - it is not perfect as it is right now, and you should test well, or write some code yourself probably.

A side note here. I was talking to some of the guys on Project Wonderland at the JavaOne conference and they were talking about writing a new Collada importer and contributing it back.  If this goes through as planned we will hopefully have a nearly complete Collada importer in the not-too-distant future.

I don't think that would be the case, darkfrog. They will probably write an importer that can only load models written by a certain modeling tool exporter script which their artists are using, similarly to how NCSoft did it. Although I never looked at the Collada spec, judging by what other people have been saying, no-body in their right mind would write an importer for the entire collada format, especially for a maturing engine like jME.

The Mesh.XML format I think is a very viable format for jME to support, I have already made lots of progress. I have importing of static models from Blender3D working perfectly:

I am now working on importing poses and morph animations. Unfortunately Ender has left the team for an unknown reason so it is up to me to finish the bone animation support in the importer.

Their goals are quite different than NCsoft.  They intend to provide the ability for anyone to be able to use Project Wonderland and export models to be used internally.  This is the reason they are writing their own Collada importer as ours has some limitations.  Granted they will not be supporting every variation, but I expect default exports from the majority of 3D tools will be supported.  NCsoft obviously wrote their own internal importer and only needs to support their specific tools they use.

do you really need an "in 3d view"-gui for this project, as opposed to embed it with a jmecanvas and have regular swing ui around it (like most tools)

do you really need an "in 3d view"-gui for this project, as opposed to embed it with a jmecanvas and have regular swing ui around it (like most tools)

No, I don't!

I don't know much of 3d and game developing and when I started playing around with jME I found GameStates and StandardGame an excellent way of starting getting in touch with the "world". This "concept" just make things simpler for me and I just love it! So, I decided to embrace GameStates and wait for StandardGame to support jmeCanvas []

One of the ideas is to make the simulation player available in an applet - This project is divided in two applications: system editor and simulation player. If this issue is not supported until the end of the project I will maintain the swing within the 3d view (its not that bad, isn't it?!) and after all, the idea of having an "alive gui" (not like most tools) just amuses me  :) ... Its much more time consuming, I know  :'( I have to admit, my time to develop this project is very short and I shouldn't lose to much time on gui. When possible (if possible) I will use jmeCanvas within regular swing application. You may think I'm lazy and should try to find a way to get gamestates or standardgame working within a jmeCanvas but...I tryed and went deep to LWJGL code and found it difficult to get a solution for this problem...and I think I'm not the only one...