An entity is a pointer to a unique collection of components that represent higher-order objects in your game. Entities are strictly defined by their component makeup, and do not contain any data or methods of their own.

    Entity Management#

    A world has several methods for managing entities.

    Creating Entities#

    Entities are created using world.create. This method accepts zero or more components and returns the newly created entity.

    const player = component(Player)
    const health = component(Health)
    const entity = world.create(player, health)

    Entities can have a single instance of a given component type.

    Modifying Entities#

    The array of components associated with an entity defines its archetype. The above example would create an entity of archetype (Player, Health).

    Components can be assigned to existing entities using world.attach, and removed from entities using world.detach. The following example modifies an entity of archetype (Player, Health) to (Player, Health, Input), and then back to (Player, Health):

    const input = component(Input)
    world.attach(entity, input)
    world.step() // (Player, Health) -> (Player, Health, Input)
    world.detach(entity, input)
    world.step() // (Player, Health, Input) -> (Player, Health)

    Destroying Entities#

    Entities are destroyed with world.destroy:


    When an entity is destroyed, its components are automatically released back to their object pool if they were derived from a component type.

    Component Lookup#

    Entity data is traditionally accessed using iterable queries. The capabilities of queries are limited, and occasionally you will need to write conditional logic based on an entity's component makeup.

    world.tryGet attempts to locate a component of an entity by component type, returning null if not found:

    if (world.tryGet(entity, Invulnerable) === null) {
      health.value -= burn.valuePerTick

    world.get will throw an error if the component is not found:

    world.get(entity, Position) // Failed to get component: entity does not have component

    World Operations#

    In the example above, world.step() was called each time entity was modified. By default, operations like attaching and detaching components, are deferred until the next world.step() call. This is done to improve the predictability of systems, so that systems never miss changes to entities, discussed in the Events section.

    Immediate Operations#

    Each ECS operation has an immediate variant. For example, attach has an attachImmediate variant which attaches one or more components during the current tick:

    world.attachImmediate(entity, [component(Position)])
    world.tryGet(entity, Position) // { x: 0, y: 0 }