Ecs by Leopotam - 8

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LeoECS is a fast Entity Component System (ECS) Framework powered by C# with optional integration to Unity

Unknown VersionMIT LicenseUpdated 3 days agoCreated on December 16th, 2017
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LeoECS - Simple lightweight C# Entity Component System framework

Performance, zero/small memory allocations/footprint, no dependencies on any game engine - main goals of this project.

C#7.3 or above required for this framework.

Tested on unity 2019.1 (not dependent on it) and contains assembly definition for compiling to separate assembly file for performance reason.

Important! Dont forget to use DEBUG builds for development and RELEASE builds in production: all internal error checks / exception throwing works only in DEBUG builds and eleminated for performance reasons in RELEASE.

Installation

As unity module

This repository can be installed as unity module directly from git url. In this way new line should be added to Packages/manifest.json:

"com.leopotam.ecs": "https://github.com/Leopotam/ecs.git",

By default last released version will be used. If you need trunk / developing version then develop name of branch should be added after hash:

"com.leopotam.ecs": "https://github.com/Leopotam/ecs.git#develop",

As unity module from npm registry (Experimental)

This repository can be installed as unity module from external npm registry with support of different versions. In this way new block should be added to Packages/manifest.json right after opening { bracket:

  "scopedRegistries": [
    {
      "name": "Leopotam",
      "url": "https://npm.leopotam.com",
      "scopes": [
        "com.leopotam"
      ]
    }
  ],

After this operation registry can be installed from list of packages from standard unity module manager.

Important! Url can be changed later, check actual url at README.

As source

If you can’t / don’t want to use unity modules, code can be downloaded as sources archive of required release from Releases page.

Main parts of ecs

Component

Container for user data without / with small logic inside. Can be used any user class without any additional inheritance:

class WeaponComponent {
    public int Ammo;
    public string GunName;
}

Important! Dont forget to manually init all fields of new added component. Default value initializers will not work due all components can be reused automatically multiple times through builtin pooling mechanism (no destroying / creating new instance for each request for performance reason).

Important! Dont forget to cleanup reference links to instances of any classes before removing components from entity, otherwise it can lead to memory leaks.

By default all marshal-by-reference typed fields of component (classes in common case) will be checked for null on removing attempt in DEBUG-mode. If you know that you have object instance that should be not null (preinited collections for example) - [EcsIgnoreNullCheck] attribute can be used for disabling these checks.

Entity

Сontainer for components. Implemented as EcsEntity for wrapping internal identifiers:

EcsEntity entity = _world.NewEntity ();
Component1 c1 = entity.Set<Component1> ();
Component2 c2 = entity.Set<Component2> ();

There are some helpers to simplify creation of entity with multiple components:

EcsEntity entity = _world.NewEntityWith<Component1, Component2> (out Component1 c1, out Component2 c2);

Important! Entities without components on them will be automatically removed on last EcsEntity.Unset() call.

System

Сontainer for logic for processing filtered entities. User class should implements IEcsInitSystem, IEcsDestroySystem, IEcsRunSystem (or other supported) interfaces:

class WeaponSystem : IEcsPreInitSystem, IEcsInitSystem, IEcsDestroySystem, IEcsPreDestroySystem {
    public void PreInit () {
        // Will be called once during EcsSystems.Init() call and before IEcsInitSystem.Init.
    }

    public void Init () {
        // Will be called once during EcsSystems.Init() call.
    }

    public void Destroy () {
        // Will be called once during EcsSystems.Destroy() call.
    }

    public void AfterDestroy () {
        // Will be called once during EcsSystems.Destroy() call and after IEcsDestroySystem.Destroy.
    }
}
class HealthSystem : IEcsRunSystem {
    public void Run () {
        // Will be called on each EcsSystems.Run() call.
    }
}

Data injection

All compatible EcsWorld and EcsFilter<T> fields of ecs-system will be auto-initialized (auto-injected):

class HealthSystem : IEcsSystem {
    // auto-injected fields.
    EcsWorld _world = null;
    EcsFilter<WeaponComponent> _weaponFilter = null;
}

Instance of any custom type can be injected to all systems through EcsSystems.Inject() method:

var systems = new EcsSystems (world)
    .Add (new TestSystem1 ())
    .Add (new TestSystem2 ())
    .Add (new TestSystem3 ())
    .Inject (a)
    .Inject (b)
    .Inject (c)
    .Inject (d);
systems.Init ();

Each system will be scanned for compatible fields (can contains all of them or no one) with proper initialization.

Important! Data injection for any user type can be used for sharing external data between systems.

Data Injection with multiple EcsSystems

If you want to use multiple EcsSystems you can find strange behaviour with DI:

class Component1 { }

class System1 : IEcsInitSystem {
    EcsWorld _world = null;

    public void Init () {
        _world.NewEntity ().Set<Component1> ();
    } 
}

class System2 : IEcsInitSystem {
    EcsFilter<Component1> _filter = null;

    public void Init () {
        Debug.Log (_filter.GetEntitiesCount ());
    }
}

var systems1 = new EcsSystems (world);
var systems2 = new EcsSystems (world);
systems1.Add (new System1 ());
systems2.Add (new System2 ());
systems1.Init ();
systems2.Init ();

You will get “0” at console. Problem is that DI starts at Init method inside each EcsSystems. It means that any new EcsFilter instance (with lazy initialization) will be correctly injected only at current EcsSystems.

To fix this behaviour startup code should be modified in this way:

var systems1 = new EcsSystems (world);
var systems2 = new EcsSystems (world);
systems1.Add (new System1 ());
systems2.Add (new System2 ());
systems1.ProcessInjects ();
systems2.ProcessInjects ();
systems1.Init ();
systems2.Init ();

You should get “1” at console after fix.

Special classes

EcsFilter

Container for keeping filtered entities with specified component list:

class WeaponSystem : IEcsInitSystem, IEcsRunSystem {
    // auto-injected fields: EcsWorld instance and EcsFilter.
    EcsWorld _world = null;
    // We wants to get entities with "WeaponComponent" and without "HealthComponent".
    EcsFilter<WeaponComponent>.Exclude<HealthComponent> _filter = null;

    public void Init () {
        // new C# syntax can be used if component instance not required right now.
        _world.NewEntityWith<WeaponComponent> (out _);
    }

    public void Run () {
        foreach (var i in _filter) {
            // entity that contains WeaponComponent.
            // Performance hint: use 'ref' prefixes for disable copying entity structure.
            ref var entity = ref _filter.Entities[i];

            // Get1 will return link to attached "WeaponComponent".
            var weapon = _filter.Get1[i];
            weapon.Ammo = System.Math.Max (0, weapon.Ammo - 1);
        }
    }
}

All components from filter Include constraint can be fast accessed through filter.Get1(), filter.Get2(), etc - in same order as they were used in filter type declaration.

If fast access not required (for example, for flag-based components without data), component can implements IEcsIgnoreInFilter interface for decrease memory usage and increase performance:

class Component1 { }

class Component2 : IEcsIgnoreInFilter { }

class TestSystem : IEcsRunSystem {
    EcsFilter<Component1, Component2> _filter = null;

    public void Run () {
        foreach (var i in _filter) {
            // its valid code.
            var component1 = _filter.Get1[i];

            // its invalid code due to cache for _filter.Get2[] is null for memory / performance reasons.
            var component2 = _filter.Get2[i];
        }
    }
}

Important: Any filter supports up to 4 component types as “include” constraints and up to 2 component types as “exclude” constraints. Shorter constraints - better performance.

Important: If you will try to use 2 filters with same components but in different order - you will get exception with detailed info about conflicted types, but only in DEBUG mode. In RELEASE mode all checks will be skipped.

EcsWorld

Root level container for all entities / components, works like isolated environment.

Important: Do not forget to call EcsWorld.Destroy() method when instance will not be used anymore.

EcsSystems

Group of systems to process EcsWorld instance:

class Startup : MonoBehaviour {
    EcsWorld _world;
    EcsSystems _systems;

    void Start () {
        // create ecs environment.
        _world = new EcsWorld ();
        _systems = new EcsSystems (_world)
            .Add (new WeaponSystem ());
        _systems.Init ();
    }
    
    void Update () {
        // process all dependent systems.
        _systems.Run ();
        _world.EndFrame ();
    }

    void OnDestroy () {
        // destroy systems logical group.
        _systems.Destroy ();
        // destroy world.
        _world.Destroy ();
    }
}

Important: Do not forget to call EcsWorld.EndFrame() method when all EcsSystems completed.

EcsSystems instance can be used as nested system (any types of IEcsInitSystem, IEcsRunSystem, ecs behaviours are supported):

// initialization.
var nestedSystems = new EcsSystems (_world).Add (new NestedSystem ());
// dont call nestedSystems.Init() here, rootSystems will do it automatically.

var rootSystems = new EcsSystems (_world).Add (nestedSystems);
rootSystems.Init ();

// update loop.
// dont call nestedSystems.Run() here, rootSystems will do it automatically.
rootSystems.Run ();

// destroying.
// dont call nestedSystems.Destroy() here, rootSystems will do it automatically.
rootSystems.Destroy ();

Any IEcsRunSystem or EcsSystems instance can be enabled or disabled from processing in runtime:

class TestSystem : IEcsRunSystem {
    public void Run () { }
}
var systems = new EcsSystems (_world);
systems.Add (new TestSystem (), "my special system");
systems.Init ();
var idx = systems.GetNamedRunSystem ("my special system");

// state will be true here, all systems are active by default.
var state = systems.GetRunSystemState (idx);

// disable system from execution.
systems.SetRunSystemState (idx, false);

Examples

Not ready yet.

Extensions

Engine independent types

License

The software released under the terms of the MIT license. Enjoy.

Donate

Its free opensource software, but you can buy me a coffee:

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FAQ

My project complex enough, I need more than 256 components. How I can do it?

There are no components limit, but for performance / memory usage reason better to keep amount of components on each entity less or equals 8.

I want to process one system at MonoBehaviour.Update() and another - at MonoBehaviour.FixedUpdate(). How I can do it?

For splitting systems by MonoBehaviour-method multiple EcsSystems logical groups should be used:

EcsSystems _update;
EcsSystems _fixedUpdate;

void Start () {
    var world = new EcsWorld ();
    _update = new EcsSystems (world).Add (new UpdateSystem ());
    _update.Init ();
    _fixedUpdate = new EcsSystems (world).Add (new FixedUpdateSystem ());
    _fixedUpdate.Init ();
}

void Update () {
    _update.Run ();
}

void FixedUpdate () {
    _fixedUpdate.Run ();
}

I like how dependency injection works, but i want to skip some fields from initialization. How I can do it?

You can use [EcsIgnoreInject] attribute on any field of system:

...
// will be injected.
EcsFilter<C1> _filter1 = null;

// will be skipped.
[EcsIgnoreInject]
EcsFilter<C2> _filter2 = null;

I do not like foreach-loops, I know that for-loops are faster. How I can use it?

Current implementation of foreach-loop fast enough (custom enumerator, no memory allocation), small performance differences can be found on 10k items and more. Current version doesnt support for-loop iterations anymore.

I copy&paste my reset components code again and again. How I can do it in other manner?

If you want to simplify your code and keep reset-code in one place, you can use IEcsAutoResetComponent interface for components:

class MyComponent : IEcsAutoReset {
    public object LinkToAnotherComponent;

    public void Reset() {
        // Cleanup all marshal-by-reference fields here.
        LinkToAnotherComponent = null;
    }
}

This method will be automatically called after component removing from entity and before recycling to component pool.

I use components as events that works only one frame, then remove it at last system in execution sequence. It’s boring, how I can automate it?

If you want to remove one-frame components without additional custom code, you can implement IEcsOneFrame interface:

class MyComponent : IEcsOneFrame { }

Important: Do not forget to call EcsWorld.RemoveOneFrameComponents method once after all EcsSystems.Run calls.

Important: Do not forget that if one-frame component contains marshal-by-reference typed fields - this component should implements IEcsAutoReset interface.

I need more than 4 components in filter, how i can do it?

Check EcsFilter<Inc1, Inc2, Inc3, Inc4> type source, copy&paste it to your project and add additional components support in same manner.

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