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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, comprehensive & hard work
This is a good book that covers almost all of the areas that you'll need to program a decent graphics engine. However, the mathematics is rigorous - and unless your up to it you'll have difficulty (but still learn much).
Ignore the people who say it is too much like hard work, if you ever want to have decent understanding of 3d graphics then you will need to learn...
Published on 11 April 2001

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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fairly straightforward methods presented in a complex manner
The book covers relatively simple subjects leading up to more meaty and difficult topics. Throughout I found the reading of topics (that I am already familiar with) difficult. The writing style left me feeling baffled, especially with the over use of harsh mathematics notation. This book aspires to old mathematical textt books which have since been presented in a much...
Published on 14 Jan 2002


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, comprehensive & hard work, 11 April 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
This is a good book that covers almost all of the areas that you'll need to program a decent graphics engine. However, the mathematics is rigorous - and unless your up to it you'll have difficulty (but still learn much).
Ignore the people who say it is too much like hard work, if you ever want to have decent understanding of 3d graphics then you will need to learn some serious math. It just goes with the territory.
As an alternative, that focuses more on real world applications and issues at a slightly less heavy level have a look at real time rendering.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow - just what i've been waiting for..., 4 Dec 2000
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
Ok - firstly, it's not fair to say this book is bad just because it requires an understanding of maths. I'm no maths genius myself, but I found that by reading the explanations and going through the code one the CD together was the easiest way to grasp topics i didn't fully comprehend.
Secondly - I felt at the start that there were one or two topics that the author glossed over rather quickly, but once you realise the value of having such brilliant examples for everything included on the CD to back up the excellent descriptions in the book then you'll realise why this book gained a rating of 5 stars from me.
The appendices in the book are all very helpfull, especially the one on reference counting using smart pointers. Don't be mislead though - you'll find no reference to DirectX or barely even opengl in this book. If you don't know these - go somewhere else.
Summing up, I don't recommend it for students who haven't studied at least up to GCSE maths, I don't recommend it for real novice programmers, but I do recommend it to anyone who has a solid grasp of c++ programming, the basics of graphics programming and wants to branch out in the the realms of 3D computer graphics and is prepared to learn hard and fast.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great content, real solutions, but a little dry, 25 Nov 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
This book is one of the few that lives up to what it says in the marketing mantras on the back. The author clearly knows his subject inside out, and has taken the time to write a book that has about 20 times as much content as other 'program a 3d engine - honest' books. This book answered a lot of very practical questions that occur when you want to write a real 3d engine.
Yes, the math is heavy, but that comes with the turf - if you thought you could code a 3d engine without any math then you're mistaken. I do think it could have been presented a little differently, though. I've only done freshman-level math so it took a bit of time for it to sink in (and not all of it did), but if you're only at GCSE level you'll have problems.
The discorse is rather dry and you feel the need for the author to pep it up a bit at times. He could have made it a little more fun to read. Good examples: Scott Meyers two Effective C++ books discuss very detailed technical issues but manage to keep it fun to read - other authors take note.
But overall, there is no other book that I've seen that covers this turf as well as this. Just don't buy it unless you're serious about 3d engine programming.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fairly straightforward methods presented in a complex manner, 14 Jan 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
The book covers relatively simple subjects leading up to more meaty and difficult topics. Throughout I found the reading of topics (that I am already familiar with) difficult. The writing style left me feeling baffled, especially with the over use of harsh mathematics notation. This book aspires to old mathematical textt books which have since been presented in a much more friendly manner.
I already most of the topics covered and, yes, the book does cover much more than other games programming books, but it could have been presented in a much more understandable way. I think this book will leave intermediate learners feeling that serious games making is unattainable as a career. It isn't as difficult as this book horribly portrays.
Also, it's not a book for 'this is how to write a great game engine', it seems to be just the maths and techniques involved, fit it together yourself.
I don't think scene graph management has been covered that well either. Shame, I was really hoping this book would be ground breaking in this area.
One last thing though, this means there is a gap for a ground breakign book that covers everything about creating a great game engine. Just in a more friendly and supportive tone.
This is the hebrew bible, someone now needs to write the english translation ;)
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars very intense, 22 Jun 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
There is no doubt that the author knows the topic of games programming - particularly the mathematics needed for game developement inside out. The author clearly loves maths and uses a very dry style to cover the topics. I found myself put off by the uneccessary use of PHD style maths notation. Having programmed games for a long time and understanding many of the concepts covered in this book, actually reading the book made me feel like a novice. I simply don't understand an awful lot of the material in the book, and it's mainly the notation and wording that is to blame. It's far too "mathematics lecture" based to be enjoyable. In my opinion, the mathematics needed for game development is simply not as hard as this book portrays.
Having said all that, the book is pretty thorough in the topics it covers..although too thorough in places. Just how many algorithms for finding a bounding sphere does a person need ??
The overall impression from this book is dissapointment. I was looking forward to reading about some of the topics in the contents table, but when I got to them it was very difficult to actually pick up anything useful that I could apply practically - which is strange as on the front cover it says it's a 'practical approach'. I think the author has definately got the style wrong - you don't need a phd in maths to program games, but this book makes it look as if you do. It would completely put off newbie game programmers. On the plus side, if you love maths and games, you'll love this book - but make sure you're damn good at maths - GCSE and A level won't cut it.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb resource, 7 Nov 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
First thing to say - writing a commercial game engine is hard, and it requires a LOT of maths.
This is the only book I know that presents all the bits you'll need to do it. Its the ONLY book that brings it all together in one place. And considering how tricky the maths in games can be, I think Dave's done an admirable job in condensing out the junk you find in linear algebra or calculus texts.
Lots of reviewers have compained that this book isn't easy reading, but thats's a factor of the subject, not this book. Its no different to saying that a book on brain surgery is difficult to understand. Some subjects are intrinsically difficult. If you find a game engine design for dummies book, then it is almost certainly going to be worthless.
Dave's book, and the website, are an essential resource for real game developers getting real projects done under time and money constraints. His code is respected, and this book contains everything that you need to understand it. It may not be suitable for casual hobbyests, but only because writing a 3D game engine is not suitable for casual hobbyests. If you want a quick route to real game developement, however, you can honestly do no better than this book. If you knew all the stuff within its pages I know of many development studios who'd be very interested in talking to you - and I can't think of higher praise than that.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a Good 3d Game Engine Book, 6 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
I've kept my eye on this book for a few weeks now and finally got to see a friends copy they had just bought and was overwhelmed by the contents and detail that the book has, and I already had most of the 3d Game Programming Books available and this easily surpasses them with their poor code which is hard to read and being a professional c++ programmer can safely say too be unusable for a professional quality games and never explain the different parts of a 3d Engine correctly and even more importantly show how to create a full 3d engine and how you get more than just a useless cube rotating jerky motion around the screen. and 3D Game Engine Design is the first not to do any of this instead. This Book goes well beyond any other book on the subject and provides easily the most professional 3d Game Engine Book ever and LaMothe's Tricks of the 3d... vol2 thats out sometime next year will have, to be simply amazing to beat this if you have played goldeneye, or Quake and you though I want to be doing that this book should the one of the first in the collection right next to the LaMothe vol 1
Thanks who ever you are for being the first author not to just download rubbish from game programming sites and hash it together and sell it for 30+ pound. you buy it, get it home the cd code doesnt work the disc mostly empty and mostly demos of software you don't want and the book is next to useless because none of the code is correctly written and you just cant use the book for anything and you still don't really understand how to write a 3d engine let alone write a good one.
Simply a complete book for 3d Game Engines that will get you from the awful introduction you got from other so called 3d game books back on track to writing that game that you can only play in your dreams.
More like this please and please an even more advanced volume 2 to this would be nice plus an advanced book on Game Modules and Tools and how to write data driven engines with custom tools and how to integrate all this into a professional game no basic stuff just advanced topics for those who have already read this and other books
If want to write 3d computer games and already know the basics of 2d and 3d from the trick of... book then buy this book avoid all others there just a waste of money learning how to set up opengl or direct3d if you don't know how to write a real time 3d game engine.
I've got my copy ordered and my friend will get theirs back when it comes. ;) sorry mate i'll buy the next pint
PS when you get this book nail it to the desk before someone tries to borrow it :)
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A very theoretical book, 4 Dec 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
This book is an excellently written mathematical treatise on the theory of 3D computer graphics. Unfortunately I can't quite see the reason for titling the book "game engine design". It covers all 3D rendering topics but is much more suited as a general rendeinrg textbook for a masters course in computer graphics. It certainly doesn't "specialize" in game engines. The associated CD contains an immense library of functions for all the topics covered in the book but - oh - how I wish people would write these functions in good old fashioned C or at least in a form that they can easily be converted to C.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looks like finally we have a *useful* book., 6 Nov 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
...I was looking for a book that offers some useful suggestions when it comes to architecture, something that was accurate (Ive seen too many books that are innacurate and show the naivity of thier author), thorough (i.e. if offers a few alternatives), from an author that actually KNOWS the subject (again, lacking in a lot of books).
Ive got to say that this book really meets my needs. This is definitely NOT a book for "wannabe" 3d games programmers (they typically converge on lamothe books and things like flights of fantasy), its more a sort of book for people who know where they want to go and need some information on ways of getting there.
I am not the greatest mathematician in the world, but I know the value of solid mathematics in the field of 3D. I dont think its fair to criticize the book at all for its rigour in terms of the maths involved, if you want to be a professional, you MUST be prepared to face up to the amount of maths involved.
Having said that, I did get a feeling that this book is more like a text book (i.e. a dry theory based appraisal of the subject) than a simple "practical" explaination of different architectures.
As a reference, this book is going to be invaluable, its certainly not an easy read, but then neither is the subject the book covers.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Maths, maths, maths and more maths, 31 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 3D Game Engine Design: A Practical Approach to Real-Time Computer Graphics (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive 3D Technology) (Hardcover)
If you're thinking of getting this book then make sure you've got a serious knowledge of the mathematics (differential calculus, matrices, etc.) squared away first. If you have, then this beefy tome is probably right up your street. If, like me, you never really made it past 'O' level maths then you'll find it *very* tough going.
I can only really give it 2 stars for us average wannabe games programmers -- there's just too much hardcore maths and too little descriptive text. That said, there'll be shedloads in between the covers for egghead maths boffins.
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