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Unigine is a proprietary cross-platform game engine, developed by Russian software company Unigine Corp. Apart from its use as a game engine, it is mainly used in enterprise area: simulators, virtual reality systems, serious games and visualization. Distinguishing feature of Unigine is the support for large open worlds, up to the planet scale.[3] It also has advanced 3D renderer which currently supports OpenGL 4 and DirectX 11.[4] An updated Unigine SDK is released each 3 months.[5]

Unigine corp logo.png
Developer(s)Unigine Corp
Initial release0.3[1] / May 4, 2005; 14 years ago (2005-05-04)
Stable release
2.9[2] / August 16, 2019; 58 days ago (2019-08-16)
Written inC++ (runtime)
C# (scripting)
UnigineScript (scripting)
PlatformWindows, Linux
Available inEnglish
TypeGame engine, Software development kit

Unigine Engine is also a core technology for a lineup of benchmarks (CPU, GPU, power supply, cooling system)[6], which are used by overclockers and technical media: Tom's Hardware[7][8], Linus Tech Tips[9], PC Gamer[10] and others. Unigine benchmarks are also included as part of the Phoronix Test Suite for benchmarking purposes on Linux and other systems.[11]


The first public release was 0.3 version on May 4, 2005. UNIGINE Engine was created from scratch and is not based on any other engine. The last update is released on July 7, 2014.[12]


Initially started with only Microsoft Windows and Linux support[1], more platforms were added later: OS X, PlayStation 3, Android, iOS. Experimental support for WebGL[13] was not included into the official SDK. UNIGINE 1 had support for several graphical APIs: DirectX 9, DirectX 10, DirectX 11, OpenGL, OpenGL ES, PlayStation 3. Initial versions (v0.3x) had only OpenGL support.

There are 3 APIs for developers: C++, C#, UnigineScript (proprietary scripting language, similar to С++ in syntax). Custom shaders can be written in GLSL and HLSL languages.

Serious game featuresEdit

UNIGINE 1 has several features required by professional simulators and enterprise VR systems (mostly support for large virtual scenarios and specific hardware), often called serious games.

Support for large virtual worlds was implemented via double precision of coordinates (64-bit per axis)[14], zone-based background data streaming[15], and optional operations in geographic coordinate system (latitude, longitude, and elevation instead of X, Y, Z).[16]

Video output to sophisticated displays was implemented via so-called multi-channel rendering (network-synchronized image generation of a single large image with several computers)[17], which is a standard approach in professional simulators.[18] The same system enabled support of multiple output devices with asymmetric projections (e.g. CAVE). Curved screens with multiple projectors (requiring image warping and edge blending) were also supported.[19] Also, various types of stereoscopic 3D output were supported: anaglyph, separate images output, Nvidia 3D Vision, as well as VR HMD support (Oculus Rift). Unigine 1 also supported multi-monitor output (video-walls)[20].

Other featuresEdit

Unigine renderer supports shader model 5.0 with hardware tessellation and DirectCompute (as well as OpenCL), together with a set of post-processes, including screen space ambient occlusion (SSAO), and real-time global illumination. There is a set of built-in high-level objects like terrain, grass, water, clouds and so on. Unigine uses a proprietary physics engine (collision detection, rigid body physics, dynamical destruction of objects, rag doll, cloth, fluid buoyancy, force fields, time reverse). Pathfinding is also implemented with a proprietary engine, together with basic AI components (spatial triggers, callbacks). Other features includes interactive 3D GUI, video playback using Theora codec, 3D audio system based on OpenAL library, WYSIWYG scene editor (UnigineEditor).


Originally released on October 10, 2015.

Unigine 2 has all features from Unigine 1, with further focus on simulators and enterprise use. The main differences are the transition from forward rendering to deferred rendering approach, PBR shading, and introduction of several new graphical technologies like geometry water, multi-layered volumetric clouds, SSRTGI, and voxel-based lighting, and introduction of C# API.[21]


Supported platforms: Microsoft Windows, Linux, OS X (support stopped starting from 2.6 version[22]). UNIGINE 2 supports the following graphical APIs: DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.x.

There are 3 APIs for developers: C++, C#, UnigineScript. Supported shader languages: HLSL, GLSL, UUSL (Unified Unigine Shader Language).


Proprietary SSRTGI (Screen Space Ray-Traced Global Illumination) rendering technology was introduced in 2.5 version.[23] It was presented at SIGGRAPH 2017 Real-Time Live! event.[24]


The roots of Unigine are in the open source project,[25] which was initiated in 2002 by Alexander "Frustum" Zaprjagaev, who is a co-founder (along with Denis Shergin, CEO) and ex-CTO of Unigine Corp. The name "Unigine" means "universal engine" or "unique engine".[citation needed]

Linux game competitionEdit

On November 25, 2010, Unigine Corp announced a competition to support Linux game development. They agreed to give away a free license of the Unigine engine to anyone willing to develop and release a game with a Linux native client, and would also grant the team a Windows license.[26] The competition ran until December 10, 2010, with a considerable number of entries being submitted. Due to the unexpected response, Unigine decided to extend the offer to the three best applicants, with each getting full Unigine licenses.[27] The winners were announced on December 13, 2010, with the developers selected being Kot-in-Action Creative Artel (who previously developed Steel Storm), Gamepulp (who intend to make a puzzle platformer), and MED-ART (who previously worked on Painkiller: Resurrection).[28]

Unigine-based projectsEdit

As of 2019 company claimed to have more than 200 B2B customers worldwide[29]. They primarily use Unigine for military and Virtual Reality projects.[30] Several notable projects include graphical benchmarks and CAD systems.


  • Cradle - released for Windows and Linux in 2015[31]
  • Oil Rush - released for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X in 2012
  • Syndicates of Arkon - released for Windows in 2010[32]
  • Tryst - released for Windows in 2012[33]
  • Petshop - released for Windows and Mac, featuring web-player in 2011
  • Sumoman[34] - released for Windows and Linux in 2017 (Steam page)
  • Demolicious - released for iOS in 2012
  • Dual Universe - MMO RPG on a planetary scale (currently in Alpha, release planned for 2020)[35]
  • Relics of Annorath MMO, ceased Production in 2017[36]
  • Dilogus: The Winds of War
  • MMT Online - playable demo available for Windows and Linux
  • The Dreamers
  • Node - VR shooter (Steam page)
  • Kingdom of Kore - action RPG for PC (in future for PS3) - cancelled by publisher
  • El Somni Quas[37] - MMORPG (Patreon page)
  • Jim Bourke Airshow Trainer - flight simulator (Steam page)

Simulation and visualizationEdit


UNIGINE Engine is used as a platform for a series of benchmarks, which can be used to determine the stability of PC hardware (CPU, GPU, power supply, cooling system) under extremely stressful conditions, as well as for overclocking:


  1. ^ a b "Unigine v0.3 is released (official press-release) - Unigine". 10 November 2006.
  2. ^ "UNIGINE 2.9: C# Component System, Better Shadows, SSSSS, Dome Screens Support, Weather Add-On - Unigine Developer".
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  12. ^ "City Traffic System, New File Dialog and Node Export Plugin - Unigine Developer".
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  25. ^ "Personal open source project by Alexander Zaprjagaev".
  26. ^ Larabel, Michael (2010-11-26). "Unigine Starts A Linux Game Development Competition". Phoronix.
  27. ^ Larabel, Michael (2010-12-12). "Good News Out Of Unigine's Linux Game Competition". Phoronix.
  28. ^ Larabel, Michael (2010-12-13). "Unigine Announces The Three New Linux Games". Phoronix.
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  30. ^ "An interview with the creators of Unigine".
  31. ^ "Cradle Game Released". Unigine. 2015-07-25. Archived from the original on 2019-08-19. Retrieved 2019-08-19.
  32. ^ "SYNDICATES OF ARKON: THE BEGINNING - Syndicates of Arkon - the first free-2-play Sci-Fi MMORPG built on Next-Gen graphics engine. The unique game universe in the style of cyber-punk". 2010-12-19. Retrieved 2019-08-19.
  33. ^ "BlueGiant Interactive - TRYST Gameplay -". Retrieved 2019-08-19.
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