Microsoft has announced the release of Babylon.js 6.0, a major update to its open source web rendering engine that powers 3D graphics on the web. Babylon.js 6.0 brings a host of new features and improvements, including a new physics engine powered by Havok, which has been used in many major video games.
While there are several new additions in Babylon.js 6.0, it is the availability of the Havok physics engine within the framework that stands out. Havok is a leading physics engine that has been used in games such as Half-Life 2, Halo, Assassin's Creed, and many more.
The main capability of Havok is that it provides realistic in-game physics such as fluids, clothes, vehicles, rigid/soft bodies, and ragdolls.
Microsoft is integrating Havok into Babylon.js via a WebAssembly plugin that combines with a new physics API. The company says the API offers more features, controls, and power to developers who want to implement real physics into their games.
It also supports multiple physics engines, such as Ammo.js and Cannon.js, so developers can choose the best option for their needs.
According to Microsoft, Havok Physics can deliver up to 20x faster performance than other physics engines on the web. It also enables advanced features such as breakable objects, deformable meshes, cloth simulation, and more.
Babylon.js 6.0 Also Has New Performance Modes
Aside from Havok, another significant improvement in version 6.0 of Babylon.js is new performance priority modes. These give developers tools to provide more performance and functionality within game scenes. There are three modes to choose from: backwards compatibility mode, intermediate mode, and aggressive mode.
Backwards compatibility mode preserves all the features and behaviors of previous versions of Babylon.js, but with some performance enhancements. Intermediate mode enables some additional optimizations that may affect some features or behaviors, but with significant performance gains.
Aggressive mode enables all the possible optimizations that can boost the performance up to 50x faster than before, but with some trade-offs in functionality and flexibility.
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