Sunday, 13 February 2011

Game Engines

Game Engines are the foundation and major tool in allowing everything that is modeled and created for a game to come to life. The Game Engine is not only a way of visually creating a space for the player to move in but also a way to create animations and interactivity for the player to have a more rounded and fun experience in this virtual world.

Recently I have have been toying with the Unreal Editor, which at first seemed kind of daunting but actually once I sat down and watched the incredibly useful tutorials they provide I found that it was actually quite fun. The Unreal Engine is one of the engines I seem to notice more when I'm playing games at home with releases that use the engine such as the Gears of War series, Batman: Arkham Asylum and Splinter Cell: Conviction, Bioshock, Mass Effect 1 and 2. Each of those games is very different but uses the same engine which shows in my opinion that the Unreal Engine has a lot to offer companies in search of a good Engine.

Now don't get me wrong Unreal isn't the only Engine out there and some games just wouldn't run right on it, which is why there are probably about another 100+ for you to try. Now, I won't go through all of them, I'll just pick out a few that have made me go oooooh, ahhhh,GEEZUS!

Ok so one of the cool engines out there that has to be mentioned is the Source Engine. Games such as Portal, Half Life 2, Team Fortress 2 and Left 4 Dead have all used this engine. Well the first thing we should notice is that all the games I just mentioned are all first person shooters, however they all awesome FPS's. The Source Engine seems to keep expanding its potential with each release of a new title on it. Well something that is very cool about the Engine is that it's run by Valve who with Steam can automatically distribute updates with new versions of the engine. This means that games will run smoother and faster and means people don't have to shell out a load of money for latest release of a new engine package.

Well Cry Engine 3 has been shown and it looks very impressive indeed. Not only does it make everything look 10 times better than in a lot of game engines, but the physics and attention to the interactivity in the world is astounding. Smoke looks and behaves realistically, Fire and Water and explosions have never looked better on screen in a game. From what I've seen it seems like one of the most powerful engines out there and I think Crysis 2 will definitely show us what it can do.