What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

For discussion and support of other visual novel engines.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
ComputerArt.Club
Veteran
Posts: 344
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 8:12 am
Completed: Famous Fables, BoPoMoFo: Learn Chinese, Santa's workshop, Cat's Bath, Computer Art Club
Location: Taiwan
Contact:

What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#1 Post by ComputerArt.Club » Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:44 am

So Godot 3.0 was recently released and it made me curious about what other game engines people here have used and how they compared to Renpy. So here is the question, what other game engines have you used? How did they compare to Renpy?

For me, I have mostly used game engines with my elementary school students. We have used Blender Game Engine most, for 3D games, they worked fine within Blender but the exported distributions were terrible. Mostly visual coding. No way of creating Android or web distributions and as I mentioned earlier, the windows distributions were super buggy. However, I think people with more experience would find ways to avoid the types of bugs that we encountered.

We also used Quest for creating games quite similar to the ones we made with Renpy. They are written more like a choose your own adventure books, more narration and indirect speech. Less control over the images and we didn't try to animate or do anything fancy like that (probably wasn't possible). The games were exported to the web, which is cool as it is cross platform, though it would have been nice to have the option of creating an Android build.

I played around with Adrift too, as I had read a few interactive fiction games made with it. More spatial, in that it was more about exploring the environment. Again, less emphasis on things like sprite animation and more focused on story. Also, as it was an interpreter, the players type what they want to do, and it is more about anticipating their input and what they will try to type. Distributions were for computers only, as far as I am aware it was not possible to make mobile distributions or to publish the games online.

I only briefly looked at Godot before, it looked a bit intimidating and I didn't really have time to give it a proper go. It looked too difficult for my students.

Unity, too big. There was no way I could install it on the school computers. I tried making a VR game for Google Cardboard but there were too many technical issues that got in the way at the time. I wasted all my time trying to overcome the technical hurdles and I had not time to work on the game itself. I have not tried to use it for visual novels.

I am having a lot of fun with Renpy. I've managed to finish 3 short games that I am proud of and I am working away at two more. Sometimes I look at some similar games on Google Play and I notice their download size can be so much smaller (1-5 megs compared to the minimum of 20 before you even add images for new Renpy games), but I guess that is a trade off when you make games with a game engine compared to coding it yourself and optimising it for your game. It is probably also about porting python, but I noticed that older versions of Renpy had smaller Android builds.

User avatar
LateWhiteRabbit
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1822
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 2:47 pm
Projects: The Space Between
Contact:

Re: What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#2 Post by LateWhiteRabbit » Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:22 pm

I've worked with the Unreal Engine quite a bit, but that was several years ago in school. It is what the teams I worked with at the time used to release our games. As an artist, I loved it, because I could do some incredible things with shaders and lighting that just weren't possible in other engines at the time. We did have a dedicated programmer, and Unreal is a bit of a beast to program compared to other off-the-shelf engines.

I still work with Unity, but it is a bit of a bear for someone who is primarily an artist and a programmer a distant second. But I like its power and customizability. It does have a very large footprint as you say, but it really is an engine you can do anything with if you master it.

Choicescript is something that Choice of Games uses for their titles, and I've worked with it a lot, specifically using Choicescript IDE. It is great for pure narratively driven titles, and easy to work with, but I don't like their licensing model.

RenPy continues to impress me as PyTom works on it over the years. And you can't beat the licensing! At this point, developers using RenPy have shown you can do really impressive stuff with the engine. My one nitpick with it is probably the documentation - like any engine that has been out for as long as RenPy has, there is a lot of outdated information and tutorials from different stages in the engines life, not all of them compatible or best practice anymore. I think PyTom is looking to remedy this by studying the coding habits of RenPy users and releasing best practices at some point in the future, which will be a big help.
ComputerArt.Club wrote:
Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:44 am
Sometimes I look at some similar games on Google Play and I notice their download size can be so much smaller (1-5 megs compared to the minimum of 20 before you even add images for new Renpy games), but I guess that is a trade off when you make games with a game engine compared to coding it yourself and optimising it for your game. It is probably also about porting python, but I noticed that older versions of Renpy had smaller Android builds.
I'm not sure download size is too much concern these days - most people won't blink at several dozen megabytes. You don't want unneccessary bloat, but with a lot of indie games already clocking in a 4-5 GB +, and AAA games going into the 50 GB + range .... ::shrug::

User avatar
DAX
Newbie
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:19 am
Completed: Our Hearts
Deviantart: i-AmDAX
Contact:

Re: What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#3 Post by DAX » Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:40 am

I........don't know any programming or writing code so, for my visual novel, I used an online engine called CloudNovel.

I've tried Ren'py but I realized you need to learn python (if I'm not mistaken) to use it so I quickly abandon it. Who told it to show up when I search 'Visual Novel Engine without coding' in google?!!! I've learnt that not every result from Google is the exact answer you wanted. *pat myself*

As a broke student, I cannot afford the luxury to buy TyranoBuilder or VNMaker (it had not been released by then but the marketing has started and the day it released, the price just took my soul away).

Then I found CloudNovel. I am one of the beta-tester actually and I am pretty satisfied with my experience. I don't need to know any programming language or sit in front of my computer and write code. It is free basically but now it has some paid features that only costs you about 3.49 USD to get it. However, the best thing is not that. It is the fact that the creator of the engine, Sonya and her staff actually listens to us! Before I become one of the moderators (it is a volunteer position), I've made requests on the forum and she or the staffs would reply to me and tup-tup, she would add it the next day.

It's been 3 years, (reaching 4, this year) since CloudNovel was created and we (I use we because I became the moderator last year, fufu~) have come the long way. Recently, it undergoes the biggest change as Sonya changes the site code from PHP to JSON and we redesign the whole site.

CloudNovel is a very suitable engine for programming dummy like me. Despite not requiring us to do any programming at all, we can make pretty much awesome stuff and interesting minigames as long as we learn to use 'Flag'. The project I'm working on right now has a cooking minigame and some other stuff. Since it is an online game engine, I don't need to worry about the size.

Honestly, as a someone who doesn't know anything about programming or even use Ren'py, I don't know if I even qualify to reply to this thread so sorry in advance but the title just asks what game engine do I use, so it won't hurt to share my experience, right? Ehehehe...

User avatar
ComputerArt.Club
Veteran
Posts: 344
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 8:12 am
Completed: Famous Fables, BoPoMoFo: Learn Chinese, Santa's workshop, Cat's Bath, Computer Art Club
Location: Taiwan
Contact:

Re: What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#4 Post by ComputerArt.Club » Wed Jan 16, 2019 10:06 am

DAX wrote:
Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:40 am
CloudNovel
CloudNovel looked interesting, however, it seems that in the last month CloudNovel has put everything behind a Paywall/members only wall.
Someone recently shared a link that went to the resources section that I had visited and planned to revisit, only now it no longer works. I check the site and everything in the browse section is offlimits now and the store button now explains that it has a point purchase system. I'm sure that if I sign up there will be some freely available resources, but I also get the sense that it won't be worth the effort without paying.
Disappointing.

I think I am better off checking the creative commons section here now.

Also, though I have to admit that I am always running into coding challenges as I try to learn new skills to implement different features in my games, there are plenty of resources here and it doesn't take long to learn the basics.

User avatar
DAX
Newbie
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:19 am
Completed: Our Hearts
Deviantart: i-AmDAX
Contact:

Re: What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#5 Post by DAX » Fri Jan 18, 2019 4:53 am

ComputerArt.Club wrote:
Wed Jan 16, 2019 10:06 am
DAX wrote:
Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:40 am
CloudNovel
CloudNovel looked interesting, however, it seems that in the last month CloudNovel has put everything behind a Paywall/members only wall.
Someone recently shared a link that went to the resources section that I had visited and planned to revisit, only now it no longer works. I check the site and everything in the browse section is offlimits now and the store button now explains that it has a point purchase system. I'm sure that if I sign up there will be some freely available resources, but I also get the sense that it won't be worth the effort without paying.
Disappointing.

I think I am better off checking the creative commons section here now.

Also, though I have to admit that I am always running into coding challenges as I try to learn new skills to implement different features in my games, there are plenty of resources here and it doesn't take long to learn the basics.
Ah, the site undergoes code changes recently and we redesign the whole site currently. The resource page will come back later. In fact, the resources are still available on the user's profile who uploaded them but the page that holds every resource is under construction. The points system has been there for some time. It's not something new.

User avatar
Sonya
Regular
Posts: 190
Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2014 5:14 pm
Completed: Cafe Rouge, Skights
Deviantart: winechan
Contact:

Re: What other game engines have you used? How did they compare?

#6 Post by Sonya » Tue Jan 22, 2019 10:31 pm

Hello,

There is no paywall, we have a freemium feature that has always been free, never paid.

I don't know what link you're using but the resources page is here: https://cloudnovel.net/browse/all/character/popular

If you need help let me know.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users