Do any of the "next gen" engines support endless 3d levels?

The general idea for my game will require the ability to stream a level seamlessly (no loading screens), similar to games like for example Minecraft, where land is dynamically created based on where the player is going to.

I could not find any information about whether or not engines like Unity 5, Unreal 4 or Cryengine 3 support this and would love to get some insight on this.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I'm no expert in game engines, but isn't this feature so uncommon that gaming engines don't provide it so you have to do it yourself? \$\endgroup\$ – Vaillancourt Mar 26 '15 at 2:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ Given infinite constant-access-speed RAM, floating point error would be the only real issue and would cause you to develop the same sorting algorithm you need to use anyways. If your whole game occurs on the ground, even with varying heights, a quad tree will suffice. Rather than move the camera around the world, "multiply both sides by -1" and move the world around the camera, instead. This way, visible coordinates will always have a fixed range of (-farplane,-farplane)-(farplane,farplane) instead of (0,0)-(400000,400000) (a very big world at a 1000-unit scale). \$\endgroup\$ – Jon Mar 26 '15 at 5:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ Using that method, "the world" is a dynamically-retrieved chunk of "world" taken out of an overall world whose data may span any number of cleverly indexed content files. World chunks that move beyond the FarPlane or FogDistance can be unloaded, and like-wise. \$\endgroup\$ – Jon Mar 26 '15 at 5:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ It may or may not be immediately obvious, but both methods produce the same screen coordinates and experience; it's 6 of one and 1/2 a dozen of the other. In essence, you are pre-projecting the world into camera space and culling(unloading) everything out of range (on the CPU). \$\endgroup\$ – Jon Mar 26 '15 at 5:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Please keep comments civil. There are certain classes of questions that we don't consider on-topic here (regardless of their difficulty or whether they'd require an "expert" to answer) because we are not a discussion forum. Questions that are "shopping list" questions, such as "do any/are there any X" are examples of such. You may want to try asking at GDNet. \$\endgroup\$ – user1430 Jun 19 '16 at 15:36

If Minecraft had the same capability, then Unity 5, Unreal 4, and Cryengine 3 have the same capabilities. You just have to learn how to make it in those engines. Just look up something like "voxel level unreal 4", "voxel level unity", or "voxel level cryengine 3". There is bound to be things written about it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I just googled "voxel level" for it and this question was in the top three results. So probably not a good search term. ;) \$\endgroup\$ – TwoThe Mar 26 '15 at 11:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ @TwoThe oh wow XD. then maybe "procedural terrain with voxels", just gotta get more and more specific :) \$\endgroup\$ – Tinfoilboy Mar 26 '15 at 21:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ I actually do know how to do that very well, I already wrote a completely new terrain engine for Minecraft. I was just wondering if any of those engines does support endless terrain. \$\endgroup\$ – TwoThe Mar 27 '15 at 11:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @TwoThe well then yes, they do support endless terrain. You just have to implement it yourself. \$\endgroup\$ – Tinfoilboy Mar 28 '15 at 18:25

It is not the "engines". You can do it with anything, even if you program your game hard-code. First you need to learn "Procedurally-generated game content" and it isn't a new thing. Games before Elder Scrolls Arena games did that.

You can surely do that on demand (as the player explorer the level) but it will take a huge badass machine to not bottleneck the game as the maps get bigger.

As far as I know, Minecraft first create a huge map, them as the player explorer the limits of it, it creates chunks of the map(huge ones), and it's theoretically infinite if there is no hardware limitation. The consoles are caped up, and the PC gets buggier and buggier after you play it a while.


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