The Five Engines that Drive the World's Best Video Games [PHOTOS]

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By IBTimes Staff Reporter | June 22, 2013 8:56 PM EST

Without great graphics, the new PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles will fail. Games such as Battlefield 4, Mass Effect 3 and Call of Duty: Ghosts or Assassin's Creed: Black Flag enjoy global recognition, but each of these games needs to be built on a solid foundation, the engine that drives the graphics.

The engines used to create games are crucial to their success and - by extension - the machines on which they are played. Here is our selection of the best upcoming games, and what makes them tick.

Frostbite 3
Frostbite is well known for its Battlefield series, based on the Frostbite 2 gaming engine. Frostbite 3 delivers great gaming with enhanced animations and realistic graphics. 

The company website reports that it  is "putting the final pieces together" of Frostbite 3. Battlefield 4 will be the first game to use the Frostbite 3 engine.

Battlefield 4 and Need for Speed Rivals are both slated to use Frostbite 3 and both will be available later in the year.

The Moddb website claims that Frostbite 3 features upgraded tessellation technology which gives better 3D effects and graphics. The engine also uses Destruction 4.0 as an upgrade to Destruction 3.0, improving the in-game destruction effects.

Cry Engine 3
Best known for the Crysis game franchise, Crytek action games include Crysis, Crysis Warhead, Crysis 2 and Far Cry. Creating benchmarks in first person shooter games, Crytek revamped its engine recently to Cry Engine 3 which gives natural light, dynamic smooth shadows, light bounce effects and particle shading. 

The advance modular system enhances the intricate details of the characters like their sense of hearing, sight and locomotion systems. Some of the benchmarks set by the engine are in characters' expressions and "near-photorealism in indoor and outdoor environments".

Released in 2011, the latest Cry Engine 3.4.5 will appear on the next generation of consoles. This year games including Warface, Crysis 3 and Ryse: Son of Rome will use Cry Engine 3.

Cry Engine 3's graphically intensive flight simulation game Star Citizen and horror game Shadow of Eternals are slated for release in 2014.

Ignite
Created by EA Sports, Ignite is the latest addition to the list of gaming engines EA uses to create sports-centric games. Announced on 20 May, Ignite has been developed for next generation consoles, delivering more connectivity and authenticity for future Xbox One and PlayStation 4 users.

The engine concentrates on propelling the level of human intelligence, true player motion and living worlds. To give the required boost to real-time world experience, Ignite sports a locomotion system which is powered to deliver 10 times greater animation dependability. With new consoles, the engine offers four times more decision-making calculations.

FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, NBA Live 14 and EA Sports UFC will all appear this year on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and all will use the new engine.

Unreal Engine 4
Unreal gaming engines have a distinguished history of running famous games, including the Bioshock series, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell series and the Batman Arkham City series. 

"With significant new visual features, Unreal Engine 4 enables you to achieve high-end visuals, while remaining both scalable and accessible to make games for low-spec PCs," stated the engine's website.

Not much is known about future games featuring Unreal 4 . However, the horror game Day Light, announced for PlayStation 4 at E3, Fortnite and Heavy Gear Assault are all expected to be based on  Unreal 4.

Id Tech 5
Id Tech 5 has muscled its way to the top of the gaming engine charts. Known for creating the Doom, Wolfenstein and Quake series, the Id Tech 5 engine is reported to carry an advance version of MegaTexture technology which can enable multiple MegaTextures delivering up to 128000 x 128000 pixel resolution without consuming much RAM.

Bethesda Softworks, best known for the Elder Scrolls series and Fallout 3, is rumoured to be using the Id Tech 5 gaming engine in the upcoming Elder Scrolls game.

It has been reported that the Id Tech 5 engine is also to be used to create Doom 4 and Wolfenstein: The New Order, both of which are scheduled to be released this year. Id Tech 6 is also rumoured to be in the pipeline.

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