With the rapid proliferation of mobile gaming and gaming consoles in all directions, choosing the right game engine often seems confusing enough. Obviously, game engines with proven track records of developing an array of successful and popular games remain top choices for many developers. But as far as the changing environment of consoles and mobile devices are concerned, we must take a closer look at various aspects including the pros and cons of these game engines. Here are the top 10 game engines you should know about.


Unity 3D is a truly affordable option for a game developer, and it has some unmatched merits that other engines don’t. Most important, you have to pay for the license once, and no matter how popular your game becomes, you do not need to pay again. That surely sounds like a smart financial move, particularly for startups and new developers. Here are Unity’s pros and cons.


  • Best licensing terms in the game industry.
  • Easy to use and compatible with every game platform.
  • Great community support.
  • Low learning curve.
  • Popular option among developers.


  • Limited tools, so you frequently have to create some tools of your own.
  • Time-consuming for making games with complex and diverse effects.

Unreal Engine

Unreal 4 running on a Nexus 5.

Above: Unreal 4 running on a Nexus 5.

Image Credit: Qualcomm

Unreal is one of the most popular game engines to develop high-end triple-A titles for years now. Gears of War, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Mass Effect, and many other blockbuster games were developed with this engine. Here are its pros and cons.


  • With so many developers using it, Unreal offers the largest community support. Several lifetime hours of video tutorials and assets are available.
  • Best support and update mechanism of all engines, with a new tool introduced with each new update.
  • There is widest range of easy to maneuver tools up under its sleeve. There are few tools that can be maneuvered even by a school kid.
  • Compatible with diverse operating platforms including iOS, Android, Linux, Mac, Windows, and most game consoles.
  • The new licensing terms of $19 a month and a 5 percent royalty only if your game makes over $5,000 make Unreal Engine 4 much more competitive than it had been in the past.


  • Some developers complain a lot about the unfriendly tools that involve a bit of a higher learning curve.

CryEngine 3

CryEngine graphics

Above: CryEngine graphics

Image Credit: Crytek

This game engine has received praise for beautiful graphics output. If you have a knack for pretty game visuals, this can be the ideal game engine for you. But this powerful game engine has its problems, too.


  • CryEngine 3 makes the game ambience pretty with its artist-level programming capability in its Flowgraph tool.
  • It has the most powerful audio tool, Fmod, inside it, so sound designers love this engine as well as programmers.
  • The game engine also offers the easiest A.l. coding of any tech on the market.
  • For a beginning developer, UI scale form comes handy.


  • The free version of the game engine lacks proper customer support.
  • Being relatively new to the industry, the engine is yet to find a robust community.
  • Learning curve is pretty challenging for a starter.



This game engine has earned wide acclaim in massive multiplayer and online game circles — you can see its results in Star Wars: The Old Republic. The licensing terms seems a bit heavy for new developers and startups, but it’s worth considering if you have a really ambitious project in hand. Here below are the pros and cons to remember when considering HeroEngine for your next project.


  • It offers several open-world maps and lively instances. It also offers a seamless transition between them.
    Offers fairly robust A.I.s.
  • Easy and handy mapping tools and integrated tool set.
  • The scripting is powerful enough to help you develop complex missions, crafting, and gathering resources.
  • Cloud support for client server with HeroCloud.


  • Scripting engine is powerful but nonintuitive.
  • HeroEngine together with HeroCloud is expensive for a new developer or startups.
  • Higher learning curve for a new developer.

Rage Engine


Few game engines can match the wide range of strengths that Rage offers. Naturally, some of the all-time used this multifaceted game engine. Grand Theft Auto V, Red Dead Redemption, and many other famous and acclaimed games have been developed with this. Here are some of the notable pros and cons.


  • Great capability for handling large streaming worlds and weather effects.
  • Unmatched in handling complex A.I.s.
  • Multitude of gameplay styles for the developer to work upon.
  • Fast network code.
  • Very attractive graphics.


  • Interface is poor compared to other top-notch engines.
  • Controls are less optimized for keyboard and mouse.