15/01/2009 3D graphics math books

I recently discovered a new good 3D graphics mathematics book which launch again this essential debate: Which book is the best? There is a lot of 3D graphics math books, I'm far from liking them all. Let's talk about my two favorites ones.

For year I had my favorite: Mathematics for 3D game programming and computer graphics. Its deal with all the topics that all book deal with: vectors, matrices, transformations, projections, geometry, etc ... This is completed by quaternions, curves, surfaces but even some physics topics, good enough for quite some fun! A width range of chapters are also dedicated to intersection for visibility determination, collision detection and raytracing. Finally, chapters are dedicated to proper graphics theory like the rasterization pipeline shading and shadows. Just with this book a developer have quite some materials to archive a good demo!

The way this book is written is maybe the best! Quite theoretical but illustrated with drawing, some code and some 'visual' formula.

The new book I really like: Essential mathematics for games and interactive applications. It won't surprise any person who know both books. There both share the same pedagogy and the topics are quite … similar. I think that it's almost a waste of money to own both of same. However, I have especially notice the chapter titled “real world computer number representation” but in other hand the shadow part is quite … brief.

My final thought … I have to admit, I'm a huge fan of Mathematics for 3D game but considering the overall, I think that Essential Mathematics is now slightly better. If you already have Mathematics for 3D game, no need to waste any money. You need a new reference, have a look on Essential Mathematics!

Mathematics for 3D game programmingEssential Mathematics for 3D game programming
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