Baldur's Gate Wiki

The Infinity Engine is a game engine which allows the creation of isometric role-playing video games.


It was originally developed by BioWare for a prototype RTS game codenamed Battleground Infinity, which was ultimately re-engineered to become the first installment of the Baldur's Gate series. BioWare used it again in the subsequent installments of the series, but also licensed the engine to Interplay's Black Isle Studios.

It was the spiritual successor to the Gold Box Engine  [citation needed] and provided the basis for five Dungeons & Dragons licensed role-playing video games plus additional expansion packs and a number of fanmade total conversion RPGs. It was succeeded by BioWare's Aurora Engine.


The Infinity Engine features pausable realtime gameplay. It is designed for six-character party-based adventuring by default, and has custom file formats for every kind of game resource required by these kinds of games (monsters, items, AI scripts, dialog trees, savegames, etc.)

The engine uses a three quarters perspective with pre-rendered 2D backgrounds and sprite-based characters. Although graphically 2D for the most part, Baldur's Gate II added the use of OpenGL to accelerate drawing.


The following games and expansions are powered by the Infinity Engine:

Game Release Developer
Original Games Era:
Baldur's Gate (BG1) 1998 BioWare
Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast (TotSC) 1999 BioWare
Planescape: Torment (PST) 1999 Black Isle
Icewind Dale (IWD1) 2000 Black Isle
Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter (HOW) 2001 Black Isle
Icewind Dale: Trials of the Luremaster (TotLM) 2001 Black Isle
Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn (BG2) 2000 BioWare
Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal (ToB) 2001 BioWare
Icewind Dale II (IWD2) 2002 Black Isle
Enhanced Editions Era:
Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition (BG:EE) 2012 Beamdog
Baldur's Gate: Siege of Dragonspear (SoD) 2016 Beamdog
Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition (BG2:EE) 2013 Beamdog
Icewind Dale: Enhanced Edition (IWD:EE) 2014 Beamdog
Planescape: Torment: Enhanced Edition (PST:EE) 2017 Beamdog

(Since the source code of the IWD2 edition of the engine was lost, that game never got an Enhanced Edition.)

Tools & Editors[]

While the developers of the Infinity Engine kept its inner workings proprietary and didn't released any tools or editors to the public, fans of the games have reverse-engineered the engine's file formats and documented them in the Infinity Engine Structures Description Project (IESDP).

This has lead to the release of a variety of fan-made tools for editing the game files, including:

  • EE Keeper (previously known as GateKeeper/ShadowKeeper/DaleKeeper), an easy-to-use savegame editor (supports all editions of all these games).
  • Near Infinity, the most powerful general-purpose browser and editor for Infinity Engine game files (supports all editions of all these games).
  • Infinity Explorer, an older game files browser that is simpler than NearInfinity but not as powerful or up-to-date.
  • DLTCEP, an older game files editor with advanced support for creating and editing areas/maps.
  • WeiDU, initially just a command-line based editor for Infinity Engine dialog files, which has grown into a full-fledged mod scripting language and mod installer that is now used by almost all fan-made mods for these games.
  • Global variables, a project to track all the global variables in the existing games, to help with modding and testing.

Fans have even created an open-source re-implementation of the Infinity Engine called GemRB, although it is still experimental.

External links[]