CD Projekt Red -- the Polish development team behind The Witcher 2 and the upcoming sci-fi RPG Cyberpunk 2077 -- unveiled the latest version of its in-house engine this morning. The engine, named REDengine 3, was crafted with the development of role-playing games with open-world environments and non-linear storylines in mind. Without a doubt, it will be an engine for the next generation of gaming.
CD Projekt Red described the engine as a "next-gen-ready solution" that will blur distinction between pre-rendered and real-time graphics. If you watched the trailer for Cyberpunk 2077, that's definitely a great thing for gamers. Earlier versions of REDengine were used to devlop The Witcher 2 for PC and Xbox 360.
So what's new for REDengine 3? Color grading and lighting systems have been changed so that graphics look more true-to-life; new animation systems for body movement and facial expressions broaden the range of emotions that characters can convey; and the engine uses a new version of the REDkit editor, a toolset tailor-made for making RPGs. What REDkit does is allow developers to make numerous quests that branch out and set them in an open-world environment where players can free-roam and complete them at their leisure.
CD Projekt Red studio head Adam Badowski said:
If we look at RPGs nowadays we find two approaches, one which emphasizes the story but limits the game world, and one that builds a vast, open world but hampers and simplifies the story. With REDengine 3 we combine the positive aspects of both approaches for the first time, creating an open environment with a complex multi-thread story. [...] When working on our previous titles, I didn't dream that we would achieve something like this. Thanks to the support of all our fans, now we have the possibility to use REDengine 3 and create something many RPG fans dream of.
It looks like the next-gen of RPGs will be ambitious -- in environment, story and graphics. With REDengine 3 and CD Projekt Red, RPGs will be in good hands. Cyberpunk 2077 is slated for a 2015 release.