4 min read
#Game industry

The Best Game Engines For Your Projects: What to Consider

See similar blog posts

Choosing the best game engines is one of the pivotal decisions for studios and indie creators alike. Game engines are the software frameworks that provide the underlying technologies for developing a game. They come with their own set of tools, features, and capabilities. 

Big names like Unreal Engine and Unity are like the Swiss Army knives. They come packed with all sorts of features, a bunch of support, and a community sharing tips and tricks. Then there’s the option to go DIY and build your own engine. You get to tailor-make everything just the way you want it for your game. The results may allow for unique gameplay experiences and innovations that stand out in the market. However, it’s way more time-consuming and resource-intensive.

This decision is not made lightly, as it influences not just the technical aspects of development, but also impacts budget and timeline. What aspects should you take into account when choosing game engines? Here’s what we believe is vital when deciding between commercial top choices and the in-house solutions. Of course, as a games industry recruitment agency, we are not developing games ourselves (we simply assemble top teams who then do it), that’s why we’ve gathered the most common things that arise during our discussions with fellow game developers. 

Commercial Game Engines (like Unreal Engine or Unity)

Commercial solutions like Unreal Engine and Unity have revolutionized the way video games are developed, making it more accessible for both seasoned studios and aspiring developers. These engines come with advantages that cater to a wide range of development needs.


One of the most significant pros of commercial game engines is their user-friendly interface and extensive documentation. Unity, for instance, is known for being intuitive and was often the go-to choice for indie developers and educators alike. This trend may not be as visible now, after the public backlash caused by the pricing changes introduced by Unity in 2023, which resulted in the Unity CEO stepping down. But still – intuitive and easily accessible it is. Unreal Engine is super popular among those creators that are strongly into visuals. With its graphics capabilities and a visual scripting system called Blueprints, it makes it possible for non-programmers to dive into gamedev.

Community and Support:

Both Unity and Unreal Engine boast large, active communities. That’s what you get with these engines. Loads of tutorials, active forums, and extra tools. Plus, regular updates and bug fixes.


Unity and Unreal Engine excel in their ability to deploy games across platforms with minimal adjustments. This cross-platform support extends the potential audience reach without rewriting the game for each system.


While there are costs associated with commercial engines (revenue sharing, licensing fees), developing and maintaining an in-house engine will be more expensive in the majority of the cases. If your budget is tight, sticking with a commercial engine can be the only viable option.

In-House Game Engines (Proprietary Solutions)

In contrast to the one-size-fits-all approach of commercial engines, proprietary engines are custom-built by studios specifically for their projects. But as mentioned above, owning an engine comes not only with its uniqueness (that can result in an outstanding game), but also with some extra costs. Make sure to take the following points into account before you pursue building your proprietary engine:

Full Control:

With an in-house engine, you have complete control over every aspect of the game development process. You’re in the driver’s seat when it comes to tailoring every aspect of your game, from graphics to gameplay mechanics, to fit your vision perfectly. This approach can make your game perform better and bring unique features to the table.

Intellectual Property (IP):

Developing an in-house engine means full ownership of the technology. This is a critical consideration if you see your engine as a competitive advantage or a valuable asset. There are no external dependencies or licensing restrictions on how the engine or the games developed with it can be used or sold.

Long-term Investment:

Are you planning a series of games with similar tech needs? Investing in an in-house engine might make financial sense over time then. Once it’s built, using and updating it for new games costs less, keeping all that know-how in-house.


Developing your engine is a hefty commitment. It demands a lot of time and resources upfront, and maintaining it is all on you. This can divert attention from game development itself and may not be feasible for smaller teams or indie developers.

Choosing The Best Game Engines

Deciding between a commercial engine and building your own is about balancing your project’s needs, budget, and future plans. Commercial engines offer a quick start with lots of support, ideal for many developers. In contrast, in-house engines offer unmatched customization and independence, suited for studios ready to invest in their proprietary technology for a competitive edge. While we can’t make this decision for you, we’re here to help make your project shine by assembling the best team of game developers tailored to your vision.

Stay connected with the author – add Alexandru Dobrescu on LinkedIn!