Second generation of my (2D) game engine
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Magnificent Game Engine (2.0)


This is my second attempt at writing a 2D game engine. Last time I did, I ended up using DirectX for rendering, FMOD for sound, Box2D for physics, Shiny as profiler, and tinyXML for loading settings from files. This time around, I have decided to keep some elements from the previous version of MGE, and change other elements, which has prompted for a rewrite almost from scratch.


This time around I wanted a game engine that could perform on both linux and windows. Therefore, every descision would be made with cross-platform suitability in mind.

There are the new specifications:

  • OpenGL: The biggest change this time is my use of OpenGL for rendering, which is the only obvious choice, apart from all the available abstractions of OpenGL. I chose to go with native OpenGL becase I wanted the experience of having done it. It might be easier with something like Allegro or SDL, but my interest for learning OpenGL ultimately made me settle for native OpenGL.

  • Qt: I wanted to implement a proper game loop, something that proved difficult when using GLUT. I have previously been in touch with small game projects using Qt and its OpenGL widget with great success. Qt does not have native support for something like a game loop, but it can be done with non-standard approaches. Additionally, Qt also icludes qmake, which is a useful utility to create project files for MSVC and makefiles when using Qt.

  • FMOD: FMOD is made for games, it supports a vast amount of sound cards, and has a very nice api, so it's difficult to find a reason not to use it. The generous licensing is also a huge plus. See this page for more information on FMOD.

  • Squirrel (TODO): Squirrel is a scripting language made for real-time applications like games. By utilizing this, it makes game development on MGE2 much quicker. See this page for more information on Squirrel.

  • Shiny (TODO): Shiny did a good job on profiling my last engine, so I decided to use it once more to ensure MGE2 performs well.

  • DevIl (In progress): A very nice imaging library which works very well with OpenGL. Will be used to load textures.


  • To work on both linux ans windows, promoting the creation of cross-platform games

  • Have a modular approach; make it easy to change eg. the sound system without changing too much of the actual game code.

  • Provide a boiler plate for rapid development of new games on both linux and windows.



  • Qt sdk, if using msvc2010 it must be compiled from source
  • FMOD sdk, qmake project file depends on FMOD_DIR being set to the FMOD root directory (containing the folders inc and lib).
  • DevIL, qmake project file depends on DEVIL_DIR being set to the DevIl root directory (containing include and lib)

Windows: Run qmake -tp vc in the directory containing If desired, set QMAKESPEC=win32-msvc2010 or otherwise if necessary. Open the project file, save the solution, and build.

Linux (only tested on Ubuntu): Run qmake && make in the directory containing Some dependencies, such as FMOD, has the version number in the file name, this might require changes to the .pro file depending on what version of FMOD you're using.

Final notes & contact

This project is in its early stages and things are bound to change, possibly a lot. If you want to help out in any way, feel free to fork it, but you should contact me if you plan on doing something major, of if you just have comments or questions. I can be reached at dale.oystein -at- gmail -dot- com.

  • Øystein Dale, 2011