BUILD engine is the game engine behind Duke Nukem 3D, Shadow Warrior, Blood, and many other titles of the 90s. It was one of the most popular engines to be licensed third-party until the Unreal Engine.

Graphical system features:

  • Supports VESA for hi-res video modes, in 256 colors (up to 1600x1200)
  • Smooth, uncapped page-flipped screen updating
  • 2D Sector-based maps

  • Floor and ceiling texturing
  • Real-time procedural textures
  • Any piece of art can be anything - be it wall, floor, or sprite
  • Transparency on sprites, and walls
  • Sector effectors altering height, lighting, position and shape of the sector it is on when it is called
  • Screen-size changing for slower computers
  • Certain colors on sprites can be remapped to a different color automatically
  • Independent colormaps, allowing fake colored lighting
  • Top-down automap feature
  • Slopes

Audio system features:

  • Alterable playback frequency - 8khz, 11khz, 22khz, and 44khz
  • 32 sound channels
  • Stereo support
  • Adlib (OPL2 FM), General Midi and Gravis Ultrasound support for music

Networking features:

  • Driver-based, any protocol is supported as long as there is a driver written for Build
  • IPX
  • Serial, with null modem cable
  • Modem
  • Synchronized
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About Orbital Contract Defense with 0 comments by scott_aw on Jul 20th, 2014

Recently I repaired my windows 7 laptop which had a cracked screen. Then I decided to finally move onto it for development now that it had a proper screen. Previously OCD has been developed on an Windows XP netbook, which was pretty good for benchmarking. But now its time to move on to modern systems, got to make sure the game can run on all systems.

Unfortunately I found that the 64bit system doesn't support some of the old Duke3d tools i was using to rebuild the ART files. EditArt, an old 90's tool for creating the ART files used by Duke3d to store textures no longer will work, and running it in DosBox is not an option when using it for production of hundreds of images. The option left is using DukeRes a general purpose GRP and ART editing program. However its a little buggy, PCX files come in reversed so that has to be taken in to account, and there was an issue with certain palette orders not allow transparencies, so I had to hexedit hack it to recognize the transparency color that is also one of the highlight colors.

Well, since I've made a few tools in the past, I felt the best way to move forward is to create a tool suite. Editart's source code is not only available, its only one C file worth of code. So I plan on re-writing the most important parts, the ability to make a functioning ART file, leave out the paint program, and also add other tools.

So the end goal is to make an easy to use toolkit for making and creating new Duke3d/Build engine content. Allowing you to create your own ART files, convert images into voxel models and create new default palettes for the engine. One issue I'm having with working with Build is that the tools are old and don't run well on modern systems. Eduke32 on the other had is pretty well made and alive, so the map making is fine in their hands. Thats not something I want to tackle. But ART and GRP file creation is something that could be handy to have.

This means that some future releases of OCD will feature Mapster maping and a multi-purpose toolkit.

The palette maker code still needs a little work, as it doesn't account for the trans tables. Also the sprite-to voxel program currently just makes unoptimized VOX files, while Duke3d/Build requires KVX files with 3d mipmaps.

There also may be a way to extend the resolution limits in the original Editart that I've encountered. It may mean that it might create files that will only be compatible with Eduke32 instead of build, but I won't find out until the first file is made.

The toolkit will be in the downloads as a stand alone that can be used on any Build engine project.

Current tools available to be included into the toolkit.

Duke Nukem 3D

Duke Nukem 3D Duke Nukem 3D

Updated 1 month ago Released Jan 29, 1996 Single & Multiplayer First Person Shooter

Duke Nukem, the politically incorrect celebrity and ultimate alien ass kicker, defends Earth and its babes from alien invasion. Take the fight to the...

Shaw's Nightmare

Shaw's Nightmare Shaw's Nightmare

Updated 4 months ago Released Mar 19, 2013 Single Player First Person Shooter

I started Shaw's Nightmare in 2007 but I cancelled it. Then I found the BUILD engine and I restarted the project but I needed a programmer. Nuno Martinez...

Shaw's Nightmare II

Shaw's Nightmare II Shaw's Nightmare II

Updated 4 months ago TBD Single Player First Person Shooter

I started Shaw's Nightmare 2, shortly after releasing v1.2 in January. Currently it is in development.


Blood Blood

Updated 4 months ago Released Jun 18, 1997 Single & Multiplayer First Person Shooter

You'll battle cultists, gargoyles, zombies, hellhounds, and an unholy host of other terrors in your quest to stop Tchernobog. You must not only defeat...

Shadow Warrior Classic Redux

Shadow Warrior Classic Redux Shadow Warrior Classic Redux

Updated 1 year ago Released Jul 7, 2013 Single Player First Person Shooter

The definitive version of the cult classic shooter, Shadow Warrior Classic Redux features remastered visuals and two massive expansion packs. Corporations...

Post comment Comments  (10 - 20 of 21)
Justin123991 May 13 2010, 5:25pm says:

Where can I get this engine?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Brainles5 Mar 26 2012, 11:14am replied: +2 votes     reply to comment
Magrathean May 11 2010, 6:59pm says:

Love this engine! Long nights of being high on pizza scripting CON files...ah, memories.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Armageddon104 Oct 16 2009, 7:25pm says:

Where can I get this engine?

+2 votes     reply to comment
Ominn Oct 20 2009, 6:15pm replied:

You can't really get the engine on it's own as far as I know, but you can buy Duke Nukem 3D for like $6 online and mod it, which is very easy. You might be better off in some ways to buy Shadow Warrior, though, as it has true sector-over-sector support, as well as other things that the Duke 3D version of Build doesn't have.

+2 votes     reply to comment
leilei Creator
leilei Mar 30 2010, 5:43pm replied:

You CAN get the Build engine on its own right from Ken Silverman's site, which is even linked here!

+2 votes   reply to comment
Justin123991 May 15 2010, 5:13pm replied:

Theres so many downloads can you give me a link to the download for the one to make a indie game?

+2 votes     reply to comment
InStars Mar 18 2009, 1:07pm says:

Exhumed/Powerslave is also a build engine game.
But PS1 version is better than the PC one.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Rigelblast Mar 17 2008, 3:25pm says:

Build Engine has a lot of features many engines didn't have in its time. You can create very dynamic and versatile levels with Build and making mods and games is quite easy. Even many modern game engines don't have all the features Build has.

+5 votes     reply to comment
Malvado_Zombie[X] Feb 18 2008, 10:56pm says:

This engine create all the games of 1994 & 1996. Was great in his time

+2 votes     reply to comment
BigBird Staff
BigBird Nov 14 2007, 4:26am says:

An awesome versatile engine for its time.

+7 votes   reply to comment
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Ken Silverman
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Release Date
Released Dec 29, 1993
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