The Linux Foundation gets into game development with new Open 3D Foundation

With a new open-source version of Amazon’s Lumberyard game engine, the Open 3D Foundation hopes to be a resource for 3D game developers worried about commercial license constraints.

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Image: Artur, Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Linux Foundation has announced a new project that 3D game developers are sure to be interested in. Called the Open 3D Foundation, the project is launching with the new Open 3D Engine (O3DE), a new version of Amazon’s Lumberyard game engine contributed by Amazon Web Services.

With more than 20 founding partners, including Adobe, Huawei and Niantic, the aim of the Open 3D engine is to “enable developers and content creators to build 3D experiences unencumbered by commercial terms,” The Linux Foundation said in a press release. 

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3D engines are the foundation of both modern games and simulation software used in other industries. AWS’ contribution of O3DE means that developers will now be able to rely on an open-source community, open repositories, developer events, forums and “a new ecosystem for developers and content creators to build, share and distribute immersive 3D worlds,” The Linux Foundation said. 

“The new Open 3D Foundation finally gives gaming and engine developers an opportunity to influence the direction of a major AAA class 3D engine that is sustained for the long term by a worldwide open source community,” said Chris Aniszczyk, CTO, Linux Foundation. Industries including healthcare, automotive and others who need 3D simulations will also benefit, Aniszczyk said. 

The Open 3D Engine has features that make it capable of developing AAA products, including multi-threaded photorealistic rendering, an extensible 3D content editor, data-driven animation, node-based visual scripting and component-based architecture. O3DE is also capable of interpreting code written in C++, LUA and Python.

“We’re proud to offer the 3D development community an unencumbered, AAA-capable, real-time 3D engine with one of the broadest arrays of integrated 3D authoring tools in the industry… we believe (an) open-source option will revolutionize real-time 3D development, as Linux did for operating systems and Apache did for the web,” said AWS VP of Engineering Bill Vass. 

The Open 3D Foundation will be divided into interest groups specializing in the various elements it takes to host, operate and code in O3DE, including the building/development pipeline, simulation engine, networking and cloud, presentation, documentation, security, content creation and more. 

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Those interested in testing out the Open 3D Engine can find the developer preview on GitHub starting today. The O3DE community is hosting an O3DECon on Oct. 12, 2021, and O3DE is hosting a panel at the 2021 Game Developer Conference on July 22. Developers and organizations that want to learn more can find the Open 3D Foundation on the web.

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