Aether Engine

Distributed Spatial Simulation

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What is Aether Engine?

What is Aether Engine?

Spatial Simulation Diagram

Aether Engine is a library designed for spatially partitioning agent-based simulations. It scales across different processors and physical machines, utilising more computing power as the simulations grow in complexity and size.

Aether Engine has a simple, user-friendly SDK, which opens up the API for developers, who can write code and deploy directly to the engine.

Spatial Simulation Management

A distributed octree data structure dynamically allocates resources to complex and intensive CPU regions for unprecedented performance and scale.

As more entities condense into a single spot, the octree data structure repartitions space to balance load across CPUs. More complex regions are decomposed into a greater number of cells, while less complex regions are handled by fewer cells.

Each cell is managed by an Aether Engine process, also referred to as a worker. When an entity moves into an unassigned region, a new one will be created. If there are too many entities to simulate effectively, the region of authority will be split, enabling computation to be handled by a different worker.

City Octree Aether



Dynamic Scaling

Aether Engine enables more entities and agents within a simulation to support enriched behaviour and content. It is possible to support thousands of visible agents within a single persistent view of the simulation.

Framework Optimisation

The framework contains an entity component system model that separates data from logic, and makes explicit the dependencies. This ensures that code can be distributed across multiple cores.

Cloud-Native Simulation

Cloud-native simulation allows developers to write, test and deploy code on the cloud, the same way they would locally. By writing in the cloud, for the cloud, the need for specialist knowledge and expertise is removed.

Technology Agnostic

The Aether Engine architecture is stripped back and flexible, enabling integrations with other libraries, including Physx, EnTT and Recast/Detour. It also provides a deep integration with client engines such as Unity and Unreal.

Customer Success

Creating New Minecraft Experiences

We are delighted to be working with Mojang Studios on the best-selling game of all time, Minecraft, to increase player capacity and explore new gameplay possibilities.

The project will integrate Aether Engine into the Minecraft architecture to enable new scalable game modes.

“Hadean’s Aether Engine is a game-changer that opens up a range of new design possibilities — not just for games like Minecraft, but for streaming platforms, developer communities, and even enterprise applications.”

Michael Weilbacher, CTO & Director of Engineering, Minecraft

CCP Games

Creator of Eve Online, used Aether Engine to transform the number of players in the world’s most successful MMO game.

“Hadean’s technology has the potential to unlock huge creative and design-orientated freedom within virtual worlds such as EVE.”

Hilmar Petursson, CEO, CCP Games


  • Eve Aether Wars ran 10k players at 30hz without interruption.
  • 5x bandwidth reduction // 3x cost efficiency.
  • Prototype completed in 8 weeks by a team of 7 developers.

The Francis Crick Institute 

A COVID-19 simulation was built in response to the global pandemic to simulate contagion spread in and between humans.

“Simulations developed on Aether Engine will enable us to significantly speed up predictions on how viruses like COVID-19 interact in humans.”

– Dr Paul Bates, Francis Crick Institute Biomolecular Laboratory


  • Maps 100,000 human agents as potential disease vectors.
  • Coded in 48 hrs and instantly deployed across multiple cloud instances ready for global scale.

Related Posts

Opening Up New Possibilities with Minecraft

We’re working with Mojang Studios on Minecraft, to increase player capacity and present new gameplay possibilities. 

Building the Future of Cloud-based MMOs with EVE Online

Creating compelling multiplayer experiences is one of the toughest challenges game developers face today, especially at scale.

Using Agent-Based Models in Contagion Modelling

We have created an agent-based model of COVID-19 that demonstrates the risk of infection and transmission across the UK.

Find Out How Aether Engine Creates Simulations of Unprecedented Scale

The Hadean Architecture Whitepaper