What is MOGRE?
MOGRE (Managed OGRE) is an advanced .NET wrapper for OGRE, hosted on sourceforge. The "glue" code between C++ and .NET is developed using C++/CLI, which offers great flexibility and low-level control of how the wrapping should work.
MOGRE goes beyond a plain wrapper; the OGRE classes are integrated into the .NET framework seamlessly (see OGRE-MOGRE interconnection).
If you want to stick with C# or VB.NET and don't want to use a wrapper, there is another option available to you: Axiom - C# Port of OGRE, which is now a part of the RealmForge project(no longer under development). Be warned, though, that ports have inherant pitfalls.
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Downfalls of using a ported project
- Because a port requires the manual re-writing of code,
- There is an increased chance of bugs being introduced to what started as already-stable.
- It takes a long time to complete anything.
- If the original project (OGRE) releases an upgrade, the port project (Axiom) has to pick through the entire original project, look for changes, and update the port project. This means new updates take a long time to be released. Quite often, updates from the last release aren't complete before the next release is out, making a "perpetual update" situation, instead of continued work on finishing the project as a whole, thats why axiom is so outdated in comparison with original ogre3d project.
- Because of changes made to the methods and structure by the porting team, your support community is reduced to only those who are also using the port.
- OGRE makes extensive use of plugins. Plugins like the Paging Landscape Scene Manager also need to be ported for use with the ported version of OGRE also increasing the development time.
Truthfully, the only reason for using a port is to avoid the very slight performance hit caused by a wrapper, but most of the time the disadvantageso of using a project like axiom outcomes the mostly not noticeable perfomance gain due to the increased complexity and increased development time of porting everything from ogre to axiom
Benefits of using a wrapper
Using a wrapper for OGRE instead of a port has a few major benefits:
- A complete port from C++ to C# is a huge project requiring a complete rewrite of the code. A wrapper merely exposes the existing C++ code to C# and VB.NET.
- This means less chance of bugs being introduced
- And also more chances of just updating the wrapped part to update the project to the most recent version
- The OGRE community is much larger and more capable of offering support.
- OGRE itself is more fully-featured than the Axiom port.
- Plugins don't care that the OGRE DLLs are wrapped, because they are loaded by the OgreDLLs themselves. Thus, there is no need to bother with porting, converting, or wrapping any of the plugins.
A good way to think of it is that instead of reinventing the wheel, we're taking an existing wheel and making an adapter for it to work with a different vehicle.
One disadvantage is that the wrapper introduces a layer between your application and the rendering engine that effects execution speed. The degree of performance degradation, however, is minimal to the point of being not even noticeable (see OGRE-MOGRE interconnection)