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Edyn (pronunciation: "eh-dyin'") stands for Entity Dynamics and it is a real-time physics engine organized as an ECS (Entity-Component System) using the amazing EnTT library. The main goals of this library is to be multi-threaded and to support networked and distributed physics simulation of large dynamic worlds.

Examples are located in a separate repository: Edyn Testbed

Build Instructions

Edyn is a compiled library.


A compiler with C++17 support is required, along with CMake version 3.12.4 or above.



In the terminal, go into the Edyn directory and do:

$ mkdir build
$ cd build
$ conan install ../conanfile.txt
$ cmake ..
$ make

Then you should find the library under edyn/build/lib/.

Windows and Visual Studio 2019

After running cmake .., the Edyn.sln solution should be in the build directory. Open it and it should be ready to build the library. It's important to note whether you want to build it as a static or dynamic library. It's is set to dynamic by default in VS2019. If you want to build it as a static library, you'll have to open the project properties (Alt Enter) and under Configuration Properties > C/C++ > Code Generation > Runtime Library select Multi-threaded Debug (/MTd) for debug builds and Multi-thread (/MT) for release builds.

When linking your application against Edyn you'll also have to link winmm.lib because of the timeGetTime() function.

The ECS approach

Typical physics engines will offer explicit means to create objects such as rigid bodies, whereas in Edyn object creation is implicit due to the entity-component design. A rigid body is created from the bottom up, by associating its parts to a single entity, such as:

entt::registry registry;
auto entity = registry.create();
registry.emplace<edyn::position>(entity, 0, 3, 0);
registry.emplace<edyn::orientation>(entity, edyn::quaternion_axis_angle({0, 1, 0}, edyn::to_radians(30)));
registry.emplace<edyn::linvel>(entity, edyn::vector3_zero);
registry.emplace<edyn::angvel>(entity, 0, 0.314, 0);
auto mass = edyn::scalar{50};
registry.emplace<edyn::mass>(entity, mass);
auto &shape = registry.emplace<edyn::box_shape>(entity, 0.5, 0.2, 0.4); // Box half-extents.
registry.emplace<edyn::inertia>(entity, edyn::moment_of_inertia(shape, mass));
registry.emplace<edyn::material>(entity, 0.2, 0.9); // Restitution and friction.
registry.emplace<edyn::linacc>(entity, edyn::gravity_earth);

There's no explicit mention of a rigid body in the code, but during the physics update all entities that have a combination of the components assigned above will be treated as a rigid body and their state will be updated over time as expected. Then, the rigid body motion may be updated as follows:

// Apply gravity acceleration, increasing linear velocity.
auto view = registry.view<edyn::linvel, edyn::linacc, edyn::dynamic_tag>();
view.each([dt] (edyn::linvel &vel, edyn::linacc &acc) {
  vel += acc * dt;
// ...
// Move entity with its linear velocity.
auto view = registry.view<edyn::position, edyn::linvel, edyn::dynamic_tag>();
view.each([dt] (edyn::position &pos, edyn::linvel &vel) {
  pos += vel * dt;
// ...
// Rotate entity with its angular velocity.
auto view = registry.view<edyn::orientation, edyn::angvel, edyn::dynamic_tag>();
view.each([dt] (edyn::orientation &orn, edyn::angvel &vel) {
  orn = edyn::integrate(orn, vel, dt);

Assigning each component to every rigid body entity individually quickly becomes a daunting task which is prone to errors, thus utility functions are provided for common tasks such as creating rigid bodies:

// Equivalent to implicit example above.
auto def = edyn::rigidbody_def();
def.kind = edyn::rigidbody_kind::rb_dynamic;
def.position = {0, 3, 0};
def.orientation = edyn::quaternion_axis_angle({0, 1, 0}, edyn::to_radians(30));
def.linvel = edyn::vector3_zero;
def.angvel = {0, 0.314, 0};
def.mass = 50;
def.shape = edyn::box_shape{0.5, 0.2, 0.4}; // Shape is optional.
def.restitution = 0.2;
def.friction = 0.9;
def.gravity = edyn::gravity_earth;
auto entity = edyn::make_rigidbody(registry, def);


Edyn is built as a multi-threaded library from the ground up which requires initializing its worker threads on start-up invoking edyn::init(), and then it must be attached to an entt::registry before setting up the scene:

#include <entt/entt.hpp>
#include <edyn/edyn.hpp>

entt::registry registry;

// Create rigid bodies as shown above...

// Call `edyn::update()` periodically in your main loop somewhere.
for (;;) {
  // Do something with the results, e.g. render scene.
  // ...

When edyn::update() is called, it processes any pending changes, creates/destroys workers if needed, dispatches messages to workers, reads and processes messages from workers which are merged into the entt::registry, preparing the entities and components to be rendered right after.

Due to its multi-threaded nature, all changes to relevant components in the main entt::registry need to be propagated to the worker threads. Edyn doesn't automatically pick up these changes, thus it's necessary to notify it either by calling edyn::refresh() or assigning a edyn::dirty component to the entity and calling some of its functions such as edyn::dirty::updated() (e.g. registry.emplace<edyn::dirty>(entity).updated<edyn::position, edyn::linvel>()).

Documentation and Support

Check out the wiki where the user manual can be found.

Check out Edyn Testbed for concrete examples.

See the design document for information about the internals and planned features.

Questions can be asked on discussions and the author can also be reached on the EnTT Discord under the same username and avatar.

Follow progress on Trello where you can see the to-do list and what's being currently worked on.

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