Leadwerks Engine

Engine default


Leadwerks Corporation

Not specified


Supported Platforms:

Languages Written In:
C/C++, Java, C#, Visual Basic 6, VB.NET, Basic, D, Perl, Python, Delphi, Pascal, Fortran, Lisp

Languages Supported:
C/C++, Java, C#, Visual Basic 6, VB.NET, Basic, D, Perl, Python, Delphi, Pascal, Fortran, Lisp

Graphics APIs:

  (9 reviews)

00000000000000000000000000000000 Leadwerks

Leadwerks Engine is a high-performance 3D engine for rendering, sound, and physics in real-time games and simulations.

We’ve designed our engine from the very beginning to deliver AAA performance under real game conditions. By using hierachical processing on every aspect of the engine from lights to physics, our engine performs an order of magnitude faster than similar products. Intelligent update management means that potential bottlenecks like raycasting and shadow rendering are regulated and updated cyclically, so that only one or two expensive updates are performed each frame.

Leadwerks Engine supports all the features of our award-winning editor 3D World Studio. There’s no intermediary file formats or map compilers. Leadwerks Engine loads 3D World Studio files directly. Level designers can even set up an interactive scene in 3D World Studio and run it in the engine, with no source code changes.

Experienced programmers can use Leadwerks Engine with C/C++, C#, VB, BlitzMax, or virtually any programming language. Or use Leadwerks script, which requires no external language, and is easy enough for beginners to use.

We believe our users should have a complete library of media assets to choose from, as soon as they license our engine. Leadwerks strives to provide high-quality royalty-free media for use with our engine. Even if the media only gets used as a placeholder, our developers still have a frame of reference to test with while their final content is produced.

Supported Features


  • Object-Oriented Design
  • Plug-in Architecture
  • Save/Load System
  • Other

  • Fixed-function
  • Fonts
  • GUI

  • Splines
  • Patches


  • Per-vertex
  • Per-pixel
  • Lightmapping


  • Shadow Mapping
  • Projected planar
  • Shadow Volume


  • Basic
  • Multi-texturing
  • Bumpmapping
  • Mipmapping
  • Volumetric
  • Projected
  • Procedural


  • Vertex
  • Pixel


  • Mesh Loading
  • Skinning
  • Progressive
  • Tessellation
  • Deformation

Scene Management

  • General
  • BSP
  • Portals
  • Octrees
  • Occlusion Culling
  • PVS
  • LOD


  • Inverse Kinematics
  • Forward Kinematics
  • Keyframe Animation
  • Skeletal Animation
  • Morphing
  • Facial Animation
  • Animation Blending


  • Rendering
  • CLOD
  • Splatting Done in 3D World Studio


  • Basic Physics
  • Collision Detection
  • Rigid Body
  • Vehicle Physics Powered by Newton Game Dynamics


  • Client-Server
  • Peer-to-Peer
  • Master Server

Artificial Intelligence

  • Scripted


  • 2D Sound
  • 3D Sound Compatible with EAX hardware.


Can be used with virtually any programming language or with the Integrated, easy to use Leadwerks Script.


License Name Price in $US Source Code Included?
Proprietary $99.95 No
Single-user license for Leadwerks Engine.

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Showing 1-9 of 9

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Its okay, but compared to other engines it falls far behind

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 Grunster54 Jan 03, 2010 at 18:46

Its feature set is nice, but if you're serious about game dev, there are much better solutions out there for you. Many like comparing it to the

CryEngine, but its definitely not even close to that level. It's more comparable to Blitz and Dark Basic level, with a few more fancy features.

Performance is something I would consider horrible. Its very slow, so if you are wanting to target a wide range of end users for your app then

its simply not going to happen (even with plenty of optimization).

Its fairly stable, and I didnt run into many problems, which is pretty good considering that there isnt a large team behind the development of the


Support is also very very weak. Getting straightforward answers is like pulling teeth sometimes. The forum community is also quite rude at

times, including the main developer.

Ease of use is okay if you're a programmer. If you're an artist you'll definitely have a hard time with it, and expect to run into a myriad of

problems. But even for programmers it can be problematic as well.

This engine does have plenty of potential to become something really good if a team was assembled to take it to the next level. But seeing how

other indie engines out there like Torque, Unity and UDK are moving forward quickly, LE2 is starting to fall far behind very quickly.

Overall if you're a hobbyist, then its not bad if you just want to play around with it, but dont expect to finish any game within a reasonable

amount of time, in fact there arent any completed and published games from this engine yet, so that in itself is not a good sign.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful

This is not exactly a game engine

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 hanglide Feb 17, 2008 at 23:42

This is really more of a graphics a engine at this point. The specs listed above are WAY off base. The author of the engine has been aware of the vast discrepancy between the specs posted here and what the engine actually does for ~6months. Your guess is as good as mine as to why he chose not to post a disclaimer here.

I used "average" for all the ratings as my intent was not necessarily to rate it but rather to correct the misinformation posted above.

Here are the specs directly from the leadwerks site.

BSP geometry (brushes).
Static meshes.
Alpha-blended heightmap terrain.
Hardware-accelerated animated models.

Automated texture mapping with adjustable parameters for offset, scale, and rotation.
BSP acceleration for raycasting and collision an order of magnitude faster than linear methods.

Fast batch rendering can handle many instances of high-polygon geometry.
Convert .x, .3ds, or .b3d meshes to Leadwerks .mesh format.

Alpha-blended texture layers.
Arbitrary subdivision and detail levels (LOD).
Automatic edge turning to smooth out slopes.

Lightmaps on bsp geometry and terrain.
Vertex colors on static meshes.
Dynamic shader-based lighting on moving objects.
Projected shadows.
Built-in lightmapper.

Physics system based on Newton Game Dynamics.
Support for interactive objects (rigid bodies).
Hardware-accelerated physics on compatible graphics cards.

Load .png, .jpg, .bmp, .pcx, .dds, or .vtf textures.
Material settings for blend mode, transparency, z-sorting, collision, occlusion, etc.
Optional shader program per material.

Support for pixel and fragment GLSL shader programs.
Normal maps with specular reflection on all lighting types.
Support for reflective and refractive materials.
Water shader.

Particle system with control over speed, acceleration, particle size, etc.
Projectors cast an image for light and shadow effects.

Sound system based on OpenAL.
Sound management prevents too many simultaneous instances of the same sound playing.
Support for EAX on compatible hardware.

Load 3D World Studio files directly.
Set up interactive worlds using entities without editing source code.

Write and compile a script program with no external programming language.
DLL for use with any programming language.

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0 of 0 people found the following review helpful

Are you experienced ?

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 diedir Nov 17, 2009 at 15:39

this point is quite annoying though, that an update can cause all that worked well before to no func without an advice... shaders are commonly the cause... ATI card and shaders...

in fact if the lead developper, Josh, found a thing not at his taste, (not as god as he wanted) he drops it out as this...

As i am not a developper, in the futrure release,
Lua script will be a time saver for me, don't get Blitzmax and don't master C++, hope so...

But all in all, it is a great little jewel engine among a lot of crap on the market.
Big Bang for your Bucks

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0 of 0 people found the following review helpful

Showing Promise

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 nihonlvr Jul 19, 2008 at 23:09

There have been many improvements to this engine recently. The most important aspect added recently is the addition of the Sandbox editor.

The renderer is coming along very nicely as well. I do experience some performance issues on a mid-high end PC. With that said performance has improved recently.

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0 of 0 people found the following review helpful

performance you don't expect for 100 bones

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 moose_o_death Jun 17, 2007 at 03:53

if you want a good reliable and most importantly FAST indie engine, leadwerks is it.

features are growing weekly, the performance is good even when hit with big poly counts. the full compatibility of 3dws5 is of major help, if you design a map in 3dws5 it will work in leadwerks.

the scripting system seems easy enough, i'm no coder so i wont lie and tell you it's awesome. it's a scripting system. it totally baffles me.

the art however is improving, shaders have just been implemented and now we have normal mapping. more features on that front to come and unlike some engines out there when they say their working on something, they are.

a really low price for what this thing will be capable of, i can't give it a higher mark for features simply because they aren't their YET, but i trust leadwerks to deliver. they haven't steered me wrong on 3d world studio.

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Best engine ever I choose.

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 Anonymous May 01, 2009 at 11:07

I love this engine for It's graphical quality.
even it have some leaks, but it extreamly is under develope.
I know it will be one of greatest engines for just a few years.

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Easy and looks great

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 julesd Jul 20, 2008 at 16:25

Well I've manage to do more in the last month with this engine,compared to years with other engines.The community is growing strong, and are working together to make it even better than what it already is.It was definitly worth the buy, and Sandbox Editor is free with it.Sandbox Editor is still growing, and has an excellent terrain editor with texture layers and mesh layers, which I find really cool.

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Leadwerks 2.0 = Unbelivable good featured engine for $150 !!

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 freshmeat May 28, 2008 at 06:21

The recently relased LE v2.0 is miles ahead of other products I tried like Gamestudio A7 (Slow & Old) and TGAC (unstable & overly complex), C4 ( physics??), Unity (Mac only , terribly expensive)

This engine is extremely powerful, fast & stable and easy to use . With unified lighting system with dynamic soft shadows, SSAO, Render enormous landscapes up to 33 million polygons, custom addable shaders, Multi-platform, dll with Newton 2.0 physics, and since it's a .dll you can use any language you like to write it. (blitzmax / C++ prefered)
The upcoming "Sandbox" will make this engine complete with real-time scene editor.

Most of the features that was missing before has now been almost all implemented.

Support is fast as Josh actively check his email and the forum is very active.

Dont' just take my word for it, take a look for youself :


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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful

Great for the price!!

  by 00000000000000000000000000000000 hankenb Jun 17, 2007 at 03:08

Engine is used in conjunction with 3d world studio, which is the best level editor I've ever used. The scripting language is easy to use, and engine can be used with blitzmax for advanced users. Developer answers posts himself on the forums and releases patches and updates regularly. Things are being added to the engine all the time. The only drawback is that because the engine is so new, the docs aren't great yet.

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Last edited Dec 27, 2012 at 18:43