Game Engines to try out in 2018 for Animators

A list of game engines to try out in 2018 for animators wanting to put their characters in realtime.

I recently completed an initial impressions of Amazon Lumberyard. But I thought it would be good to see other Engines out there for 2018.

Since there is a lot of game engines I went to do a search for what kind of game engines are out there supporting 3D/2D workflows from DCC tools, if you are a want to make your character animations for games or real time animations.

I narrowed it down to a few based on a couple of requirements:

• Support of FBX and Animations
• Animation State Machine tools.
• Tutorials and Documentation

5. Godot Engine

Godot is quite a new engine to have come out in the last few years. The good thing about this is its Open Souce so you Don’t have to pay any royaltie fees. There are quite a good amount of tutorials on YouTube for how to work with 3D Character Models. I am still experimenting but you might need to use code to work with getting the various animation states to run in game. But recently they have published their new animation state machine. Godot recently supports FBX so you can get any 3D Characters and Animation into the engine easily.

Not much tutorials or docs yet on their 3D Functions but it is strong for 2D.

http://docs.godotengine.org/en/3.0/tutorials/3d/working_with_3d_skeletons.html#using-3d-bones-for-mesh-control

4. Cryengine

Cryengine is a much harder to use as you would need to use Autodesk Maya or 3ds Max to make or build your 3D CG models. They have their own plugin develop to export to the Crytek engine. But now it can accept FBX file formats with.

If you like to feel the Good Old Crysis feel and graphic proneness of an engine give it a spin. The New Version 5.5 preview is quite cleaned up compared to the old versions

To get a 3D character and animation into the engine you would need to Maya or 3dsmax exporters. There is support for FBX in the newer Cryengine 5.

Documentation Link:

http://docs.cryengine.com/display/CEMANUAL/Animation+Quick+Start

3. Amazon Lumberyard

I written quite a long blog post about Lumberyard. There is some new innovations and upgrades from CryEngine since Amazon bought the license from Crytek.

There is a new Animation editor that allows quick testing of game characters without much code and it seems to be a bit cleaner than Cryengine.

It’s still BETA though so I would be experimenting with it more rather than using it in a full production.

Documentation Link:

https://docs.aws.amazon.com/lumberyard/latest/userguide/char-intro.html

2. Unreal Engine

I started learning a bit of UDK back when it launched and even paid for unreal engine 4 when it was still on subscription.

You can’t go wrong with this engine with its AAA proven track record with many titles shipped there is even a new training academy now for various use cases for the engine.

Animation wise they have a template for setting up a Pawn Actor to use your 3D character in engine.

If you want power and flexibility of coding this engine sure can’t be wrong.

There is 2D Animation support but this engine seems more suited for 3D Worlds and Characters.

Documentation Link:

https://docs.unrealengine.com/en-us/Engine/Animation/CharacterSetupOverview

1. Unity3D

The most popular engine out there it is able to deploy to many platforms. Lots of support and tutorials are available to get you started.

Animation wise you have both 2D and 3D animation support.

Can’t go wrong with this engine it is well documented how to get your animations in.

Documentation Link:

https://docs.unity3d.com/Manual/AnimationsImport.html

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