GDC Online: Game On for Adobe Gaming

With the leaves changing color and cooler temperatures on the horizon, I always feel like fall is a great time to reflect on the accomplishments of the past year and take stock. Looking back at GDC Online 2011, I am incredibly excited about how Adobe Gaming has progressed over the past year!

At this year’s GDC Online, the Adobe Gaming team is thrilled to show off some of the amazing accomplishments from game developers using Adobe technology, including runaway indie game successes like Song Pop, Wonderputt, and Botanicula, along with Stage 3D hardware accelerated browser and social games from bigger studios like Square Enix’s Legend World, SilverStyle Studio’s Herokon, Zynga’s FarmVille 2 and Ruby Blast. Even if you’re not able to join us at the show, check out the new Adobe Gaming channel on YouTube – it’s jam-packed with demos, how-tos, and product previews that help you get started with 2D and 3D game development.

But that’s not all we’re showing off at GDC Online 2012, far from it! We’ll be previewing software codenamed Project Monocle, and demonstrating how this advanced profiling tool for Adobe Flash Player and Adobe AIR can help developers gain much more insight into their code and increase their productivity. Believe me, you’ll never go back once you’ve seen Monocle :).

Two of our Adobe game superstars – Thibault Imbert and Renaun Erickson – will be demonstrating not only how developers can target the reach of the Flash Player, which is on 1.3 billion connected desktops, but also how super-charged 3D games like Madfinger’s Shadowgun and Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have begun to take advantage of that huge reach even though their games were developed using Unity. More details on their sessions on, “Adobe Gaming at GDC Online 2012.”

And if you’re inspired to develop your own game, don’t forget that you could win cash thanks to the Epic Flash Games contest happening now.

There’s a lot to show in Austin, and we’ll be posting some of the highlights later this week. In the meantime, check out the Adobe Gaming showcase, and tell us if you’ve got a great game you’ve developed using Adobe Game technologies!

Adobe Gaming at GDC Online 2012

Game Developers Conference Online 2012 is upon us! This Austin event brings together the best and brightest professionals in online, social and cloud gaming – and we’re excited to be a part of it. Our team will be there and speaking at two sessions you won’t want to miss!

Changing the GameTuesday, October 9 at 2:00 p.m. CDT

From Stage3D development on the desktop with Flash Player, to cross-platform mobile development with Adobe AIR, Adobe is shaping Flash to be the console of the web. Join our own Sr. Product Manager Thibault Imbert to get an inside look at technologies, such as Stage3D (for GPU acceleration) and Project Monocle, and hear about their role in some of the latest gaming titles (e.g., Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) created. Register for this session here.

Introducing Project “Monocle” from Thibault Imbert on Vimeo. *Sneak Peek * Get a look into Project Monocle before the session:

Are AAA 3D Games for the Web Possible?Wednesday, October 10 at 3:00 p.m. CDT

Building AAA 3D games for the web require many features, including GPU hardware acceleration, shader languages, audio, input, content loading, content caching, and full screen support. Gaming Evangelist Renaun Erickson will cover feature comparison of WebGL/HTML5, Flash, Unity and Google Native Client technologies, and highlight how developers are using them to push previously unheard of boundaries during his session. Be sure to attend – register here.

Interested in more about Adobe and Gaming? Get the full scope on Adobe Gaming. And, if you’re working on a Flash game or have an idea you think is really special, enter the Epic Flash game contest!

 

Impressive Unity Games Running in Flash

Last week, I had the pleasure of presenting to more than 1200 Unity developers at the 2012 Unite conference in Amsterdam. It was an honor to present on the same stage as the legendary Peter Molyneux!

*Quick jump to my section here*

There’s a lot of excitement about the work the Adobe Gaming team is doing with Unity, giving game developers more choice in using their favorite tools to target the Flash Player via Premium Features. At Unite, we showed off previews of Unity games that will be published to Flash Player, including Madfinger’s Shadowgun in Facebook and Nickleodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles which you can see in this video. With the announcement of the Unity 4 preview, we expect to see even more Unity games running in Flash and hope to showcase more of these for you later this year.

Are you building a game for Flash Player using Unity? If so, tell us about it on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/flashplatform

Flash Player and AIR Pave Way For New Games

Today, we released the latest version of the Flash and AIR runtimes with Flash Player 11.4 and AIR 3.4. These new builds feature a few great features that gaming fans will be excited about; most importantly, we’re increasing the devices that can take advantage of hardware acceleration so game developers can give more gaming fans smoother and more exciting game play.

Along  with adding constrained Stage 3D, we’ve also provided added support for iOS application development, and introduced concurrency, which helps improve game responsiveness. Gaming evangelist Lee Brimelow will be walking users through the new features and upcoming tooling updates in a demo on August 23.

We’ve been laying some groundwork this year for increasing the speed at which updates to the Flash Player are adopted. Flash Player 11.2 introduced background updating, and over 400 million people opted in to use it. That means that with any new release of the runtime, 400 million users can be updated to the latest version of Flash Player in about 48 hours. To put this in perspective, 400 million is about six times the number of Xbox360’s sold since 2005. Game developers can now quickly embrace new features knowing there’s a huge audience waiting for them.

We’re also working closely with partners to help extend the reach of the Flash Player. This week, the gaming team is at the Unity Unite conference in Amsterdam, where we will be talking about Premium Features for Flash Player and showing off some great new games that were developed using a Unity workflow – Madfinger’s Shadowgun and Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. These are just two in the upcoming lineup of new games targeting the Flash Player, and the gaming team is really looking forward to talking with developers at Unite and learning more about their plans and creations. To hear more, check back in later this week, and take a look at the current showcase of games at http://gaming.adobe.com/.

It’s a busy week for events, and you can also find members of the Adobe gaming team speaking at CEDEC in Japan, where GREE will be talking about developing MONPLA SMASH, the newly-released free-to-play RPG action battle game – its first mobile social game built on Adobe AIR and now available on the iOS AppStore.

And finally, you’ve got to be in it to win it! PlayerScale’s Player.io, in cooperation with Epic Game Ads, has announced their first Epic Flash Game Contest with some sizable payouts (total cash prizes worth $150,000US). This contest is for multi-player games targeting Flash Player, and you can see the rules and start building your Flash games today – http://office.playerio.com/competitions/ega2012/#register.

We can’t wait to see what you build!

 

Adobe Introduces Premium Features for Gaming with Flash Player 11.2; Announces Collaboration with Unity Technologies

Gaming is experiencing an unprecedented period of innovation and growth, with online and mobile gaming attracting new users, enabling innovative game play and driving new business and distribution models. Social and casual games on the Web are fueling global growth in gaming, with worldwide social gaming projected to grow from $4.94B in 2011 to $8.64B in 2014 according to the Casual Games Association. With unparalleled reach to over 1.3 billion PCs, Adobe Flash Player is a catalyst for this growth by providing a consistent, powerful, and innovative gaming platform – the game console for the Web. Adobe is investing in Flash technologies for gaming, allowing developers to deliver console quality games across browsers and devices. We are investing not only in improving game development, but also in new features and services for game developers to help them reach new markets and build successful gaming businesses.

Today we’re announcing premium features for gaming with Flash Player 11.2. These will allow game developers to publish advanced games with console quality experiences to Flash Player. We’re also excited to announce that we are collaborating with Unity Technologies to enable Unity customers to publish web-based 3D games, like Madfinger’s Shadowgun, to Flash Player using the premium features from directly within Unity’s tools.

Rich online and social gaming experiences are attracting consumers from traditional consoles to the Web, creating opportunities for developers to introduce new genres and types of game play. Game developers are also committed to increasing production values for their online games by tapping into a broad ecosystem of game development tools. Adobe is enabling third party tools and gaming middleware partners, like Unity, to target Flash Player by taking advantage of premium gaming features designed to enable console quality playback of the most advanced games. In addition to premium features, we’ll also be working closely with Unity to integrate future Adobe Digital Marketing services for game developers into the Unity tools to help them more easily build successful gaming businesses.

Premium feature APIs in Flash Player 11.2 will benefit graphically demanding games by giving developers access to hardware accelerated graphics rendering in combination with domain memory, which is used by C/C++ cross compilers such as Codename “Alchemy“. Developers can use the premium features to publish games for Flash Player across PC browsers and as natively packaged mobile apps using Adobe AIR for distribution through the Apple iTunes App Store, Google Play Store, Amazon Appstore for Android and other mobile app markets. Many great games are not expected to require these premium features, and will rely only on the rich core platform capabilities of Flash Player. We will continue to advance the core platform as well as introduce new and exciting premium features and services to provide a foundation that allows any game developer to deliver rich games and experiences more easily to more people than any other platform.

With today’s release of Flash Player 11.2, we are making premium features available free of charge for content published prior to August 1. Starting August 1, these features will be licensed for commercial use, and there is no charge for the first $50K in application revenues. The use of premium features within Adobe AIR, including for mobile applications for iOS and Android, will be royalty free.

We’ve designed this pricing to encourage the kind of innovation and experimentation that often helps to spark inspired and inventive games. This also enables us to invest in and support innovation in Flash technologies that will benefit the ecosystem of popular game middleware and development tools, beyond Adobe’s first party tools. For more details about Adobe’s licensing program and premium features, visit www.adobe.com/go/fpl.

Every day millions of users enjoy popular online games through Flash Player, such as Rovio’s Angry Birds, Zynga’s Farmville and EA’s Sims Social on Facebook, along with Gamegoo’s Qi-Xiong Hegemony, one of China’s top ten online games. And we’re already seeing some great AIR games that use the new Stage3D capabilities of AIR 3.2 appearing in markets, such as Winter on Whale Island, Rivers of Olympus, Spaced Away and ApexVJ. Games continuously push technology boundaries, and Flash technologies allow Adobe to deliver new capabilities faster and make innovative features instantly accessible to more users than any other technology. Today we’re also detailing how developers can realize these benefits with the releases of Flash Player 11.2 and AIR 3.2. We expect to see games continue to push the boundaries of the Web and mobile and Adobe will be there to innovate and deliver technologies and services that enable developers, publishers and our partners to create and distribute amazing experiences to their users, regardless of genre, platform or location.

Visit gaming.adobe.com to get the latest gaming information and to see a showcase of the latest games built using Adobe technologies.

What our partners are saying:

“We’re thrilled to offer the 260,000 active developers making great games and applications with Unity the opportunity to take advantage of the unprecedented reach of Adobe Flash Player across all major desktop browsers on more than a billion PCs,” said David Helgason, CEO, Unity Technologies. “Unity developers will be able to take advantage of the stunning performance offered by the addition of hardware accelerated graphics rendering through Stage3D in Flash Player.”

“Kabam pioneered and continues to lead the way in the development of free-to-play, MMO-style social strategy and RPG games for the core audience, so we’re very excited with the tools Adobe is bringing to browser-based games,” said Kevin Chou, CEO and Co-founder of Kabam. “We rely on Flash Player’s enormous installed consumer base to reach legions of core gamers, and the outstanding fidelity levels achievable with Stage 3D acceleration means we can deliver the kind of immersive game experience our gamers want and deserve. That’s what we live for as a company. You’ll see this technology and enhanced game quality this year in our upcoming slate of high performance, next gen games.”

“As the leader in competitive online strategy and combat games, KIXEYE is always on the hunt for new tools that will allow us to continue to deliver the most fun and mind-blowing browser-based game experiences on the planet,” said Will Harbin, CEO of KIXEYE.  “Flash Player and Alchemy 2 will help us ensure that our highly performant, hyper-accessible games operate flawlessly in stunning 3D. We plan to utilize the technology’s full capabilities in our line-up of next generation RPG titles scheduled to launch this fall.”

“As a multiplatform and leading Flash developer, we’ve never seen a greater opportunity to produce high-caliber games – on the Web and on Facebook – that are artistically and technically outstanding,” said Steve Couture, CEO of Frima Studio. “With more than a billion installs, no other technology comes close to Flash’s reach and performance capabilities. We look forward to utilizing this technology to bring gamers a level of quality and performance that they have never seen before in browser based games.”

Learn more about the exciting new features and capabilities introduced today in Adobe AIR 3.2 and Flash Player 11.2.


On sub-standard apps

Steve Jobs (via TechCrunch): Intermediate layers between the platform and the developer ultimately produces sub-standard apps and hinders the progress of the platform.
That’s the first thing I read this morning… I agree with Greg Slepak (CEO of TaoEffect) who wrote:
Crappy developers will make crappy apps regardless of how many layers there are.
That doesn’t mean that [...]