The Source Engine is a 3D game engine developed by Valve Corporation. Its unique features include a large degree of modularity and flexibility, an artist-driven, shader-based renderer, accurate lip sync and facial expression technology, and a powerful, efficient and completely network-enabled physics system.

The Source engine was first shown to the world by being the power-horse behind the hugely anticipated Half-Life 2 which was released in late 2004. Since then the Source Engine has been upgraded with the release of such titles as Half-Life 2: Lost Coast, Team Fortress 2 and the Left 4 Dead series to name a few.

Whilst it has been years since the release of the Source Engine they haven't yet unveiled a 'next-generation engine' as the Source engine is always updating and is just as relevant in the gaming world today if not more than when it debuted in 2004. It has been aided by the release of the free Source Development Kit (SDK) which include such features as HDR for developers to use in their projects. Hence the reasons stated we have yet to see 'Source Engine 2'.

On July 10th 2012, Valve released the 'Source Filmmaker' - a freeware client to allowed anyone to make movies inside the Source Engine. More information on the Source Filmmaker can be found here.

Below you can find a list of amazing features that the Source Engine boasts:

Renderer

  • Version 2.0 (and below) shaders, bump mapping, LOD on models and world
  • Author shaders with HLSL
  • Cube and environment mapping
  • Dynamic lights, vertex lighting and light maps, many light types including flickering, pulsing etc.
  • High-Dynamic Range lighting
  • Water with refraction and fresnel effects
  • Advanced particle system that can emit sprites or models
  • Projected shadows allow for a large number of characters per scene
  • Occluder entities for visibility blocking
  • Indoor/Outdoor environments
  • Deformable terrain
  • 3D skyboxes extend the horizon and add parallax on distant objects
  • Dynamically rendered organics (grass, trees etc)
  • Subdivision surfaces, diffuse & specular bump maps
  • Real-time radiosity lighting
  • Effects include but are not limited to: particles, beams, volumetric smoke, sparks, blood, environmental effects like fog and rain
  • Scalability
  • Dx6-Dx9 hardware supported

Materials System

  • Instead of traditional textures, Source defines sets of materials that specify what the object is made from and the texture used for that object. A material specifies how an object will fracture when broken, what it will sound like when broken or dragged across another surface, and what that object’s mass and buoyancy are. This system is much more flexible than other texture only based systems.
  • Materials can interact with objects or NPCs such as mud or ice for vehicles to slide/lose traction on.

Multiplayer Network Code

  • Time and gamer tested by millions of gamers around the world
  • Support for both LAN based multiplayer and Internet based multiplayer games
  • Prediction analysis for interpolating collision/hit detection
  • Optimizations for high-latency, high-packet loss 56k connections

Advanced Characters

  • Detailed and believable characters
  • Realistic eyes
  • Focus on player/object, not simply parallel views
  • Proper eye “bulge” for realistic eye reflections
  • Simulated musculature provides outstanding emotions, speech and body language
  • Language independent speech, characters can naturally speak in many languages
  • Skeletal/bone system for animation
  • Layered animation system can synthesize complex animations out of several pieces
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Blog RSS Feed Post news Report abuse Latest News: Indiegogo campaign has begun!

About INFRA with 8 comments by GonaUho on Jun 22nd, 2015

What’s up!

We are pleased to announce that we’ve finally gotten the game to a place where we can start our Indiegogo campaign with confidence!


It’s been a demanding journey, and it definitely still will be as we are closing in on launch, but reaching this milestone has made the team feel a sense of pride and excitement.


We’d like to thank you, your kind words and the near endless support and interest of some have not gone unnoticed. It's you guys who've made us push and work so hard!

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Taking place entirely aboard a massive futuristic aircraft, CONSORTIUM is a first person science-fiction role-playing experience unlike any other. The...

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Garry’s Mod 10
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Updated 1 week ago Released Nov 2006 Single & Multiplayer First Person Shooter

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Post comment Comments  (290 - 300 of 329)
Dec1234
Dec1234 Apr 1 2009, 9:55pm says:

I Love Valve.

+6 votes     reply to comment
poodleinacan
poodleinacan Apr 1 2009, 9:17am says:

YEY! It has scalability! Just waht I needed. I think am gona that in adition to Mod Tool (free version)

+1 vote     reply to comment
mmstick
mmstick Mar 21 2009, 5:49pm says:

lol what do you mean? Just install the mod in the SourceMods folder...

+1 vote     reply to comment
exhelm
exhelm Mar 21 2009, 11:53am says:

Source engine is truly the best engine there is. much better then the cryengine i think

+3 votes     reply to comment
zimon2210
zimon2210 Mar 29 2009, 3:35pm replied:

Its easier to modify i think :P

+2 votes     reply to comment
Erwaitin
Erwaitin Mar 25 2009, 6:38am replied:

Perhaps Source technology is not the most advanced, but Valve effors about modding improvement and Steam position as a standard on FPS games make it much better to begin than any other engine. Of course, hard work get awesome results in any engine, but Source is awesome!

+3 votes     reply to comment
Frozen442
Frozen442 Mar 18 2009, 6:55am says:

Can't wait for new version of this engine!
I hope episode 3 will have dynamic lightning ^^

+2 votes     reply to comment
TheUnknownM
TheUnknownM Mar 11 2009, 11:33am says:

great engine and cant wait for half-life 2 episode 3

+1 vote     reply to comment
Shadow85 Online
Shadow85 Mar 9 2009, 5:35pm says:

How can I activate a mod through Steam?

+1 vote     reply to comment
emMKai
emMKai Feb 26 2009, 8:57pm says:

loving the source engine!
i wonder - if you made a really good game with this, would Valve possibly put it on Steam as a download?

+1 vote     reply to comment
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Platforms
Windows, VR, X360, XBOX, PS3
Company
Valve
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Official Page
Valvesoftware.com
Licence
Commercial
Release Date
Released Oct 2004
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Highest Rated (17 agree) 10/10

Even tho it is aging and it is beginning to show its weakness comparred to other more modern engines, it is still my most preferred engine and the only one I was able to get into succesfully. And with all of the updates Valve is giving it, I think the source engine will be with us for a long time. I wouldn't really recommend this for a commerical product, just because there are so many more modern engines out there that will be a lot easier in the long run (like UDK), but all of the commercial games…

Nov 16 2010, 3:48pm by Half_Kill

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