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Prototyping Racing Games: Road/Path Tool vs EasyRoads3D

This is a first post in a series about prototyping race games in Unity3D.

We looked into two tools that can be used to create race tracks, more specifically AndaSoft’s Easyroads3D and Six Times Nothing’s Road/Path Tool. Here’s what we found:

EasyRoads 3D

easyRoads3D

Pros:

  • Track creation by clicking the terrain and adjusting marker positions.
  • Generated road will deform the surrounding terrain, so there’s no terrain poking through.
  • Can close the track to create a circuit.
  • Offers a wide range of options to create interesting tracks, suitable for full games.
Cons:

  • It’s not possible to generate a track from code.
  • The Unity editor slows down when creating long roads.

Road/Path Tool

roadPathTool

Pros:

  • Track creation by using markers.
  • Very easy to generate a track from code.
  • Possible simply draw a road texture on the terrain, rather than creating a mesh.
Cons:

  • Cannot close the track to create a circuit.
  • The terrain smoothing under and around the track doesn’t work very well.
  • In sharp turns, the generated track mesh can have overlapping triangles, causing the car from the Unity Car Tutorial to get stuck when it drives over it.
  • Only suitable for simple tracks and paths.

The verdict:

EasyRoads3D is a very useful tool and the full version offers a lot of content. But bear in mind that this is a tool designed to be used in the editor.

Road/Path tool allows creating race tracks dynamically, and is perfectly suited for prototyping if you’re not using bumpy terrains or sharp angles in your track.

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