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Let me compare Blender Cycles Mode and Blender Game Engine. They both have 5 types of things, being:

Render. Physics. Code. "Objects". Real-Time (speed).

Cycles Mode has SUPERIOR Render, and SUPERIOR "Objects" ex. constraints and a whole bunch a tools. And SUPERIOR Physics accurateness. But lacks in Real-Time speed (unless fast computer?). Last but not least, code, the core of a game, but, does Cycles Mode allow code to make a full game plus allow control so you could interact in the game? (despite speed).

Also explain any limitations Blender Cycles Mode would have.

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    $\begingroup$ Cycles is not a game engine. Nothing about it is real time. Depending on scene, frames take minutes not 1/60 of a second. $\endgroup$ – Aoradon Jun 30 '17 at 18:46
  • $\begingroup$ But everything else is on par/better than BGE. Is "real-time" the only actual limitation of Cycles mode? $\endgroup$ – Friendly Person 44 Jun 30 '17 at 19:41
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    $\begingroup$ Create the scene in Cycles, then bake the result as a texture. Example result: youtu.be/WLjBASgcQBM?t=6 $\endgroup$ – Paul Gonet Jun 30 '17 at 22:26
  • $\begingroup$ @Aoradon or even hours depending on the number of samples and the complexity of the scene. $\endgroup$ – Tooniis Jul 12 '17 at 12:22
  • $\begingroup$ Neither Cycles nor Blender Game Engine are "modes". They are render engines. With independant settings, advantages and disadvantages but one of the most important ones related for the real time is they use different materials setup which is unconvertable. $\endgroup$ – Mr Zak Jul 12 '17 at 12:40
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No.

Why? It's the same reason why video games don't look as good as 3D animation movies. For video games your machine has to render the game in real-time. Have you ever used Cycles viewport rendering? If yes how did it look when constantly moving the camera? Horrible right? It's because Cycles uses a technique for rendering called Path Tracing which results in awesome renders, but requires a lot of time to render a single frame smoothly, so imagine your machine trying to render 60+ frames a second. Just in one second. You would need a supercomputer to achieve this! BGE uses another technique called Rasterization, which is used by a lot of game engines, because it can easily achieve decent renders in microseconds, so your machine can easily achieve high framerates. Movies are not rendered in real-time. Instead they are rendered one time then published as videos, so when you play a movie it is already rendered and your machine just plays the rendered frames.

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Nobody makes games with path traced render engines. They're slow, their performance changes based on the content of the scene, and its hard to make them cross platform (compute languages don't work well on mobile for instance). With cycles viewport rendering you'll notice the image gets less noisy with time. If you had that behavior in a game anytime you move the camera the amount of noise would spike up and your picture would look awful.

That being said it might be a cool effect for a horror game. But I doubt you could make it work well enough that anyone would want to play it.

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  • $\begingroup$ Would a faster computer solve this? $\endgroup$ – Friendly Person 44 Jun 30 '17 at 19:43
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    $\begingroup$ No, not really. The images would resolve faster with a faster computer obviously, but even with the fastest graphics cards available it simply wouldn't be fast enough for a game. For example, the gtx 1080 Ti is one of the fastest cards available for path tracing. Lets say you went crazy and put 4 of them in one computer. When rendering a simple scene you're only going to be able to render 1 or 2 frames a second at 1080p. To get to 60 fps you would need a 30 to 60x increase in rendering performance over an approximately $7000 computer. $\endgroup$ – Lukas Valine Jun 30 '17 at 19:55
  • $\begingroup$ Wait a moment. Doesn't 2.8 have real-time PBR? That's real-time AND amazing rendering. Besides that, what if you make the resolution 500x500 at 40 samples at 25 fps with no audio etc? $\endgroup$ – Friendly Person 44 Jul 1 '17 at 13:33
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    $\begingroup$ Yes, 2.8 has a render engine called Eevee that’s realtime and looks a lot better than the current OpenGL renderer. Eevee still uses OpenGL, and because of that you don’t get things like glass shaders, bounce lighting, accurate reflections, sss (not yet), and so on. As far as rendering at 500x500 at low frame rate and low samples that would maybe work on the fastest computer, but it would be a really crappy gaming experience. $\endgroup$ – Lukas Valine Jul 1 '17 at 16:52
  • $\begingroup$ So then couldn't you play the game in real-time in the Eevee mode? (if we want to call it the replacement of "Cycles mode"). That is, as long as Eevee mode has everything Cycles mode has besides the new renderer. $\endgroup$ – Friendly Person 44 Jul 1 '17 at 21:45
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Cycles and real time don't go along well on the same sentence...

What you do is in Cycles is create assets for a game, create materials for them and then bake those into simplified textures that don't require all of that computing time. In order to display things in real time games are all about having the most optimized geometry and textures.

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If you want to get your game to look like its in Cycles and want to work like you are working in Cycles then try out the new Eevee Realtime Render Engine in Blender 2.8

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