When comparing libGDX vs Skyline, the Slant community recommends libGDX for most people. In the question“What are the best 3D game engines?” libGDX is ranked 7th while Skyline is ranked 33rd. The most important reason people chose libGDX is:
Lots of references, tutorials and open source code to learn from.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Lots of resources to learn from
Lots of references, tutorials and open source code to learn from.
Pro Great performance across devices
While it may not always have the best performance for a particular device or system, it's one of the few engines which consistently performs very well across different platforms.
Pro Allows you to migrate from 2D to 3D within same framework
LibGDX supports both 2D and 3D game development. Allowing developers to migrate from 2D to 3D with ease without having to switch the engine they are using or having to learn a new API.
Pro Doesn't force a specific design
Unlike some engines, which only allow you to make your game in a few specific ways, libGDX allows you to design any type of game you wish as it is extremely customisable.
Pro Active and helpful community
The libGDX community, in the official libGDX forum is extremely helpful and approachable for any kind of question regardless of the its quality or difficulty.
The forums themselves are a very helpful resource for any issue or guide simply by searching past posts in there.
In addition to the forums, there's also the official #libgdx IRC channel on Freenode.
Pro Uses Box2D
A Java port of the Box2D physics engine is included in libGDX.
Pro Interfacing with platform specific code
Sometimes it is necessary to access platform specific APIs, e.g., adding advertisement services or leaderboard functionality provided by frameworks.
Pro Can use any JVM language
Since it's built with Java and runs on the JVM, any language that compiles to Java bytecode can be used to develop games with libGDX.
Pro Free, open source & permissive license
libGDX uses the Apache License 2.0.
Not only is libGDX free and open source but also it's license gives you a lot of power over the engine. As long as you provide a copy of the license, give credit, do not hold devs liable and do not use libGDX logo in any engine forks you can do pretty much anything you want.
Pro Very easy to customize
Pro Support for 3rd party tools
libGDX has built in support for many 3rd party tools, including (but not limited to) Bullet Physics, Box2DLights and the well-praised Tiled Map Editor.
Pro Constantly improved
LibGDX itself is pretty mature, and get updates not quite frequently, but various libraries for it are actively updated.
Pro Across platform support
You can write once and run anywhere (Android, IOS, Desktop, Browser) also lately came with lib to deal with VR.
Pro Lots of tutorials to get you going
Even though the official documentation might be lacking, there are many tutorials on YouTube for libGDX.
Pro Excellent font rendering support
Very good tools for rendering fonts.
Pro Similar to the Microsoft XNA framework
Old XNA users may like libGDX since it's API is actually very similar to XNA's.
Pro Focusing on object pool patterns, to control memory without pointers
Unlike Unity or other engine, it allows to optimize a language that uses garbage collector when using patterns of objects you can control the use of memory without needing a language like C / C ++, getting the same speed in a more productive language.
Pro Kotlin support
It is written in Java so you can easily make games using Kotlin and Ktx project will help you get all advantages of this language.
Pro Great tech support and friendly community
A growing community that is always helpful with dev response times averaging less then 24 hours. Often less than 12.
Pro Comprehensive WYSIWYG editor
Skyline provides a straightforward drag and drop development environment that can be customized to suit individual preferences. Playing the game and animating the scene can be done from within the editor at any time.
Future versions will allow extending editor's functionality with plugins and offer an official way of trading custom plugins.
Pro Highly affordable licensing
Skyline's commercial edition costs just £40, has no royalties or earning limitations and includes 2 activations per license purchase and a year of free updates.
Pro Runs well on lower end machines
Skyline can be run on a machine with 2GHz Dual Core CPU, 2GB of RAM and Nvidia's 9800 GT (or equivalent) GPU. While, obviously, higher specs are recommended, it's reasonable to expect around 60fps on small scenes with these specs.
Pro Excellent terrain editor
The Terrain editor is easy to use and will include features such as hole cutting.
There is a differed lighting render for internal scenes, which makes creating multi light and beautiful/atmospheric scenes so much easier.
All the tools for the terrain are in one place such as placing road/paths, vegetation, billboards, and the settings are easy to locate and change.
Planned features include:
Hole cutting in terrain and
Pro Low learning curve
Making a game in the current top engines is hard work, making something small and basic in Skyline is not. Easy to learn drag an drop model placement and editing supplemented with easy to follow video's on forum make the process straightforward.
Pro Full global illumination
Including image based lighting.
Pro Has a free version
A free version that's limited to non-commercial usage and lacks a few features is available.
Pro Impressive water render
Rendering of a water plane looks fantastic and is easily edited for different effects.
The schematic editor is designed to make it easier for non-programmers to create games.
Pro Asset store
Not much in it at the moment but is starting to grow and will continue to grow with an increase of users.
Pro Constant development and regular updates
There are many additions to the engine that are on the road map such as multi threading and tree physics.
The feature list is constantly evolving with each user request and idea put forth.
Pro Support for custom editors
Skyline has a custom editor that gives the user of making their own tools for use directly in the editor to develop their games. All the editors are made using the Qt Designer and programmed in lua inside the engine itself.
Pro OSVR support announced
Open-Source Virtual Reality support is in development.
Pro More editor's
Weapon Class Editor.
Advanced Mesh Editor.
Environment Editor (volumetric clouds and day night cycle, lightening, ocean settings, height fog).
Pro Lots of learning resources
The documentation is been rewritten and follows a structure like a course.
Introduction to > Level designer with examples > Artists
There is also video tutorials, video examples and video tutorial series been produced.
There are user created demo scenes, examples and more.
Pro Visual GUI/HUD Dditor
Making HUDs and GUIs has never been easier
Pro PBR Workflow
Full PBR workflow, your not stuck to Secular or Metallic it has both
Pro One on one private support with engine developers
Can contact the Skyline developers and they will always respond and help as fast as they can.
Con Not starter friendly
Even default applications fail to load in Android. It doesn't have any documentation on errors either.
Con The project slowed down in development
The number of active developers has decreased, many open issues and pull requests.
Con Build system is clunky
LibGDX uses Gradle, which is very demanding of memory and makes IDEs freeze on anything if your computer is not powerful enough.
Con Does not create compiled code
LibGDX runs entirely on Java and does not create executable binaries.
Con A bit difficult to use
This engine is not well put together. Is made from various free modules each with their own peculiarities. At times it feels you need to learn a couple of libraries rather than just one. Is not an engine for beginners as it requires coding. Lots of coding. You need to be intermediate to advanced in Java to develop in LibGDX.
Con Currently limited to targeting PC
Mobile targets are planned.
Con Free Version currently not available/severely limited when available.
The free version has massive amounts of features functionality removed, including the ability to compile anything standalone.
The free version is currently (as of November 2017) not available until the next major release.
Note: some of what is below is open to change, this is the coming set of changes.
The price will be jumping from $40 to £99.99 ($132.32) for the lowest tier able to build a standalone. This tier will not be able to remove the engine splash screen.
The next tier will be £199.99 ($264.66).
Con No C++ SDK
Con Small community
There is a small but helpful community that are constantly creating video tutorials and one member is creating a FREE ebook to make the transition to the engine simpler.
Con Still in beta
Not all features are fully implemented yet.
Con Lacks occlusion culling and lightmapping
This is been added in a future update, however a date of this update hasn't been given yet.