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|Stable release||2.5.0 / November 09, 2010|
Delta3D is an open source software gaming/simulation engine API. Primarily managed and supported by the Modeling, Virtual Environments, and Simulation (MOVES) Institute at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Alion Science has also been a major contributor to enhancements and features.
Delta3D is released under the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL). The external modules have their own licensing. Some modules, such as Qt, require the user to download and install separately for use with Delta3D.
Delta3D can be used to create a game/simulation — it is not a "finished product" ready for release/deployment. Tests, examples, and other support applications are provided. The "user" (developer) is expected to "leverage" these as resources and technical references in order to create their own custom implementation.
In order to make "full" use of Delta3D you will need a compiler/development environment. Additionally, you will need a source control application to access the source code for the latest versions of Delta3D and the related libraries/modules. This is necessary in order to make use of changes in support libraries as well as ongoing updates to Delta3D that may not be available in the "release package", or covered in the current product documentation.
Delta3D is an API to other open source modules; providing features to take advantage of the capabilities in the modules that make up the "package". Therefore, the features available for any given implementation are limited to the modules integrated and the support applications available to access them.
Simulation, Training, and Game Editor (STAGE).
Simulation Core 
Simulation Core, commonly referred to as SimCore, is a "collaborative" implementation of Delta3D functionality — providing the "base" capabilities for an MMORPG application using Delta3D. SimCore is developed primarily by Alion Science and Technology. The first version of SimCore was developed as part of the Deployable Virtual Training Environment (DVTE) project for USMC which started in 2006. Although Alion is still the primary developer of SimCore, it is now used by a number of other companies and organizations across the Modeling and Simulation (M&S) community.
In order to build and "run" SimCore many additional libraries are required, including additions to the core Delta3D build.
Physics — special effects and particle system capabilities. A "Physics Abstraction Layer" (PAL), is used to provide a standard API to various physics libraries. As part of the early development of SimCore, Alion obtained a license with Ageia (now NVidia) that allowed integrating Delta3D with NVidia PhysX — named dtAgeiaPhysX. Though dtAgeiaPhysX is still available it is no longer officially supported.
Several open-source products are part of the Delta3D package. You can build them or use the provided binaries/libraries to build and run Delta3D based applications on your system. The current version of a product may not be compatible with Delta3D.
- expat (optional)
- Game Networking Engine (GNE)
- OpenAL Utility Toolkit (ALUT)
- Open Distributed Interactive Simulation (DIS)
- Open Dynamics Engine (ODE)
- OpenSceneGraph (OSG)
- Physics Abstraction Layer (PAL)
- Perl Compatible Regular Expressions (PCRE)
- McDowell, P. and Darken, R. and Sullivan, J. and Johnson, E. (2006). "Delta3D: a complete open source game and simulation engine for building military training systems". The Journal of Defense Modeling and Simulation: Applications, Methodology, Technology 3: 143.
Further reading 
- IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications: Projects in VR: the Delta3D open source game engine
- Halldale Media Ltd: Published in MS&T Magazine Issue 5/2009: The Delta3D Game Engine is Reaching Maturity
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