Creation Engine

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Creation Engine
Developer(s) Bethesda Game Studios
Initial release November 11, 2011
Development status Active
Written in C++
Operating system Windows
Platform Windows
PlayStation 3
Xbox 360
Xbox One
PlayStation 4
Type Game engine
License Proprietary

Creation Engine is a 3D video game engine created by Bethesda Game Studios to replace Gamebryo for their future games. Currently, Creation Engine has only been used to create role-playing video games and is one of the most modular engines ever built.


Creation Engine is an in-house engine created by Bethesda Game Studios (XnGine being the previous in-house engine by Bethesda). After using Gamebryo to create The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, and Fallout 3, Bethesda decided that Gamebryo's graphics were becoming too outdated and began work on Creation Engine for their next game, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The engine is based on Gamebryo and still has code from it inside Creation Engine.[1] The Last-Gen Creation Engine offers basic real time shadows and more detail to distant objects. However the Next-Gen version of Creation Engine, that is powering Bethesda's newly announced Fallout 4, offers Physically Based Rendering, Dynamic Volumetric Lighting, the ability to build your own structures in-game, advanced character creation, etc.[2]


  • Havoc Behavior is a flexible animation tool that allowed the developers to blend animations together in a few clicks. This means that animations like walking and running can be blended together seamlessly to make the animations look much more realistic. This important addition enabled Bethesda to improve character animations in their games.[3]
  • The new engine included a newly upgraded version of Radiant AI which allows the NPC's to dynamically react and interact with the world around them. You can observe a NPC eat breakfast, go to work, go to the pub, and then go to sleep. The improved AI allows NPC's to react to your actions and they can become friendly with the player or hostile to the player through his/her actions.[4]
  • Radiant Story, allowed for NPC's to dynamically create new quests for the player in unexplored places.[5]
  • In previous games, Bethesda licensed Speed Tree for trees and foliage, but when making Skyrim with Creation Engine, the Bethesda team made their own foliage rendering system which is capable of rendering both prettier and larger amounts of foliage at one time.[6]

Creation Kit[edit]

Creation Kit is an extremely useful modding tool for Creation Engine games. The Creation Kit takes advantage of the Creation Engine's modular nature and has made Skyrim into one of the most modded games of all time. It was created by Bethesda Game Studios for the modding community of The Elder Scrolls series.[7] The tool can be used to create new weapons, new worlds, new NPC's, new races, update graphics, and even fix bugs the developers did not. Mods created using this tool are officially hosted on Steam Workshop.

Next-Gen Creation Engine[edit]

Not much has currently been revealed about this new version of the Creation Engine, but it is known that it will be powering Fallout 4 and include physically based rendering[8] and dynamic volumetric lighting.[9] In the new version of this Creation Engine, you will be able to build your own colonies and AI can adapt to these world changes.[10]

PlayStation 3 optimization problems[edit]

Bethesda has a bad history with PlayStation 3, with Oblivion, Fallout 3, and then continued that on their new Creation Engine with the release of Skyrim. The PlayStation 3 version of Skyrim has out-of-memory issues, major bugs, and delayed downloadable content.[11] These problems are hoped to stop on the PlayStation 4 with the release of Fallout 4 on a new version of the Creation Engine

Games using Creation Engine[edit]