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Panda3D is a 3D engine: a library of subroutines for 3D rendering and game development for C++/Python.

Panda3D is a 3D engine: a library of subroutines for 3D rendering and game development. The library is C++ with a set of Python bindings. Game development with Panda3D usually consists of writing a Python or C++ program that controls the Panda3D library.

Panda was created for commercial game development, and its primary users are still commercial game developers. Because of this, Panda3D needs to emphasize four areas: power, speed, completeness, and error tolerance. Everyone knows what power and speed are. But completeness and error tolerance deserve some extra commentary.

Completeness means that Panda3D contains tons of unexciting but essential tools: scene graph browsing, performance monitoring, animation optimizers, and so forth. These things may not be sexy, and as a result, open-source engines often don't have them. But when you're serious about getting work done, and not just playing, these tools need to be there.

Error tolerance is about the fact that all game developers create bugs. When you do, you want your engine to give you a clear error message and help you find the mistake. Too many engines will just crash if you pass the wrong value to a function. Panda3D almost never crashes, and much code is dedicated to the problem of tracking and isolating errors.

Finally, to come back to power and speed: the best way to gauge Panda3D's capabilities is to take a look at the Sample Programs. These are short programs that demonstrate a sampling of Panda3D's capabilities. The screenshots have frame-rates in the upper-right corner, taken on a Radeon X700.

Panda3D was developed by Disney for their massively multiplayer online game, Toontown. It was released as free software in 2002. Panda3D is now developed jointly by Disney and Carnegie Mellon University's Entertainment Technology Center.

Project information

Simplified BSD Licence

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1.10.x series is the current focus of development.

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Programming languages:
C++, Python

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