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Experiences about PlayCanvas


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Hey. I've been looking into Playcanvas for about a week or two and it seems awesome. I have some experience in web-design and have been playing around with different 3D game engines in the past. Playcanvas has been the easiest to get started with so far. They have a developer section with good tutorials and there is likely to be a lot more as the community grows. The cloud based designer works great too.


To me it seems like a good alternative for Unity 3d. 


I made a bowling game with playcanvas last week to test it out and wrote a few words about it in my blog.

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Hello. I've been using PlayCanvas for quite a while now (almost a year I think?) and I am quite a fan. Originally I tried using it for a Ludum Dare, because of the promise of a free 'pro' subscription if I did so and I like free things. I also gave it a shot because I wanted something that was JavaScript based to help me learn that a bit more. It turned out to be the right choice for me anyway, and I haven't used any other game engines since (used XNA and Direct3D before this and briefly tried CraftyJS).


I'd say if you're new to it, it is quite easy to learn indeed. The 'Designer' helps a lot in regards to getting started and then you can just sort-of add the code in (or go code first like a professional).


Also like Orange said, it's pretty well documented and there's tutorials, help forums (http://answers.playcanvas.com/), general forums (http://forum.playcanvas.com/) and their IRC channel which is usually fairly busy and has the PlayCanvas guys in. 

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Hey, I picked up Playcanvas couple of months ago and quickly realized its's potential, with the easy to use interface, I was able to get some models on the screen and animate them with little to no effort. And just a week from then I was certain and confident enough to build a simple 3D side-scroller game after playing around with the engine. I have enough experience with other engines like unity3d to compare and decide which engine to continue with. In the end Playcanvas seems to be the most reasonable option for me and I believe would be for anyone looking to start making or already making games in general, considering the following factors: -



1. The engine is based on WebGL and runs on WebGL enabled browsers.

2. You can do your coding in the browser. (Meaning you can develop at any given time 

3. You can do your coding on your PC, Laptop or tablet. (Remember: it runs on your browser)

4. Easy to use user-interface.

5. It's cloud based.

6. You can setup a project and invite anyone like designers, coders, artists, 3D artists or anyone to collaborate or simply review your project if you want.

7. Publish your game to ANY platform. (That is seriously a huge PLUS) considering the fact that unity3d requires you to either pay a steep amount monthly(subscription) or buy a full license.


9. NOW IT'S OPEN SOURCE. (What more could anyone want). :)

10. Scripting is VERY EASY with or without any knowledge of programming. The functions are self explanatory and easy to fiddle with. If you don't like one script, simply remove it from your object and create as many as required.

11. They also have Pro account should in case you need extras. And am sure you will be very pleased after you've compared the price to other engines available out there. :)

12. Projects are also GITHUB enabled.

13. Free hosting for your published games.

14. Very active community and forum. I mean you get a quick reply to your questions.

15. Lastly, which is HUGE PLUS. Because it's wrapped around HTML and javascript, integration with websites, web applications or applications running inside or outside of the web is easy. I suppose I should say that overall, RESTRICTED TECHNOLOGY OR TOOL, limits ones creativity and determination but with FREE AND OPEN SOURCE TECHNOLOGY OR TOOL, you are only limited to what you can imagine. (Possibilities are endless)



I finally made a game with the help of Playcanvas online API docs and forum, I was able to whip up a mini game demo in less than 4 weeks. Have a look here <a href="http://apps.playcanvas.com/propsplanet/demo/FantasyJourney">Fantasy Journey: The Game</a>

I personally love making games and that's why I want a flexible, easy to use and affordable game engine so I don't have to worry about unnecessary things and just focus and concentrate on making games. Which I believe Playcanvas have and offering. Personally, it's a great alternative to unity3d.

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  • 11 months later...
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  • 5 months later...

Currently doing small prototypes with it, writing custom shaders, trying to port Unity scenes, etc. The tech itself is awesome, and API is pretty good.
The problem for me is the market:

  • Sponsorship market for WebGL games is pretty dull right now
  • All WebGL-related dev jobs are focused either on Three.js or Unity
  • Freelance work - WebGL games are pretty niche, clients still avoid them

So, the only reasonable use case scenario for gamedev is creating a self-funded game and hoping for the best.

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  • 11 months later...

To bump this topic up, just few news from latest stuff. There is way more WebGL content out there, large companies such as: Google, Facebook, Oculus and most gaming portals already put a lot into WebGL industry.

Recent launch of Facebook Instant Games - is one of big examples for that. Oculus even making their own browsers.

WebVR and WebGL 2.0 is around the corner.

Miniclip easily takes WebGL games already.


Whole market that used to rely on Flash is rapidly moving to WebGL, as Chrome is going by default block Flash and not ship it with their browser very soon. Others will follow.

There is demand and constantly companies are looking for more and more JavaScript developers with experience in gamedev, that is very rare mixture today, and demand is not met at all.

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