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!

 

Adobe Gaming Brings Turtle Power to a New Generation

Enter Donatello’s world and train like a turtle in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Tactics 3D for desktop. The “heros in a half shell” are back in the latest take on a gaming legacy from Nickelodeon. They’ve been working on this highly addictive online 3D game for the last couple of months and we’re happy to see that it is already building a great fan base. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a prime example of a game built with Unity and using the upcoming Unity export for Flash Player to reach vast new audiences. More than 1.3 billion people can now control the radical dudes while waiting for the comeback of the TMNT cartoon on Nickelodeon September 29.

Play the game here and visit gaming.adobe.com to see other great games. Turtle Power!

Adobe & The Web

Today, we’re unveiling a new addition to the Digital Media blog, focused on the Web platform. The new blog, called Adobe & The Web, will touch on thought leadership, industry trends and product related announcements from Adobe and partners in the standards and open source Web space. We’ll also touch on commercial tools and service offerings. See our inaugural post below and look for much more to come.

Today in San Francisco, we kicked off Create the Web, a worldwide tour for interactive web designers and developers and partners that will provide us with the opportunity to share our vision for the web. We are delivering a live streamed keynote that lays out our vision for the web and the role that Adobe will play.

Our mission is to make the web better and to build the best tools in the world for web designers and developers.

We contribute to web standards and to open source projects, like WebKit and Cordova, to move the web forward. We get involved in the community, through hackatons and meet-ups. For example, we have worked with the community to organize a series of events called Test The Web Forward. These are a kind of hackatons where we focus on identifying and fixing interoperability problems in the various browsers. We welcome and encourage the participation of anyone interested in joining us.

We are contributing improvements in a few areas where we have some expertise, including magazine-quality layout (CSS Regions & CSS Exclusions), graphical foundation (blend modes, compositing and transforms), better device APIs and cinematic visual effects (CSS custom filters). We are also making available today CSS FilterLab, a fun experiment to play with custom filters, which even allows you to write and debug custom shaders right from your browser.

We also build the tools and services that web designers and developers need. This includes tools like Dreamweaver, our all-in one web production tool. We are releasing today an update to Dreamweaver with support for new HTML5 elements, faster FTP, a streamlined insert panel, support for Edge Animate and more. This update is available for free to Creative Cloud members.

We also introduced today the Edge Tools & Services, which are available with a free membership of Creative Cloud. They include Edge Animate, a powerful tool to create interactive and motion content; Edge Inspect, an indispensable tool to preview, inspect and debug your web content on mobile devices; Edge Code, a code editor for HTML/CSS/JavaScript, available now as a preview and PhoneGap Build, a hosted service to easily build web apps for mobile devices using the PhoneGap framework.

We’ve also introduced Edge Web Fonts, a new service built on the Typekit engine to deliver free and open source fonts.

We’ve given a sneak preview of a new tool we’re working on called Edge Reflow which makes it  easy to create responsive web content visually, but using standard CSS and media-queries.

Following San Francisco the tour continues on to London, Tokyo and Sydney in early October followed by a 30-city international tour of “HTML Meetups” in destinations throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia, and more. These “HTML Meetups” are centered on JavaScript, CSS, HTML, designing and developing web content and mobile apps and include a one-hour overview of content from Create the Web and deep dives with demos on our products related to design and development. To request a Meetup in your city, visit http://html.adobe.com/events.

We had a lot of exciting news to tell you about today. To find out more about what we’re doing to make the web better, visit html.adobe.com.

New PhoneGap Build Service Available Today

I am excited to announce the general availability of Adobe PhoneGap Build, a new service that allows developers and designers to build apps for mobile devices using standard Web technologies and package them in the cloud. PhoneGap Build is built on top of the PhoneGap framework, which is a distribution of the Apache Cordova open source project, offering new features that allow developers to compile apps faster than with any native Software Development Kit (SDK) and target all major platforms with a single codebase. Following an extensive beta testing phase, PhoneGap Build is now publicly available via Creative Cloud.

In addition to the new service, Adobe also announced that PhoneGap has become the most popular mobile app development framework with over one million downloads and 400,000 PhoneGap developers to date. The platform has emerged as a top-level open source project with major companies contributing to Apache Cordova including Google, Microsoft, HP, IBM, Intel, RIM, Nokia and others. For a PhoneGap overview, check out our new video at http://youtu.be/wOH4aGows40. More than 90,000 developers and designers have used the PhoneGap Build Beta service to compile 200,000 apps to date. Prominent apps built with PhoneGap include Wikipedia, the BBC London Olympics app, Microsoft Halo Waypoint, Zynga’s Mafia Wars Shakedown, Salesforce Hybrid Mobile SDK and Amanita Designs’ new Kooky game app. For more examples please visit http://phonegap.com/app.

PhoneGap Build removes the challenges developers face during the deployment cycle by automatically compiling apps for each major app store without having to maintain native SDKs. With the new PhoneGap Build Hydration feature, developers can take advantage of faster debug and build cycles and instantly notify testers of new versions.The “Share” function allows users to review app prototypes with colleagues and clients through a QR code that automatically installs the app. For more details visit the Phonegap Blog.

PhoneGap Build supports all major mobile platforms including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, Bada, webOS and Symbian. The new service is available through Adobe Creative Cloud starting today. Available to customers in 36 countries and in multiple languages, pricing for Creative Cloud membership for individuals is US$49.99 per month based on an annual membership and US$74.00 per month for month-to-month memberships. An introductory offer of US$29.99 per month is available to qualified customers for a limited time. A standalone subscription to the PhoneGap Build service is also available for $9.99 per month.

For the those of you not familiar with Creative Cloud yet: Creative Cloud is a radical rethinking of the entire creative process and an industry-defining shift in creative expression and inspiration, where members can explore, create, publish, and share their work across devices, the desktop, and the Web. Once you are a member you can download and install all of Adobe’s creative desktop applications and get access to different online services. Check out www.adobe.com/go/creativecloud for all the details.

Flash Player Enhances Gaming Worldwide

The web is generating a lot of buzz today, particularly with Adobe’s Create the Web event focusing on tools and technologies for the modern web! Speaking of the web, I’m excited to profile a couple of upcoming browser-based games from Japan and Germany. Thanks to the reach of Adobe’s Flash Player on over 1.3B connected desktops, these two games really show off where AAA and sophisticated, console quality titles are being brought to the social web with great success.

Square Enix Japan has just launched a teaser version of their upcoming social game “Legend World,” where users relive past gaming glories by battling boss monsters from older Square Enix titles. Thanks to the Flash Player and Stage3D, Square Enix Japan was able to take the actual 3D models and animations out of games they shipped to consoles, and put them directly into the browser. That means that you’re fighting the exact same boss that was in the original  console game. While the game will only be in Japanese, you can check out the battle demo here, featuring Ring Wyrm from Final Fantasy XII on PlayStation2: http://member.square-enix.com/jp/gamezone/legendworld/battleflash/index.php

And for you MMORPG fans, Herokon Online is coming soon to a browser near you. Based on a German pen and paper RPG – Das Schwarze Auge – Herokon Online takes you into the world of Aventuria where players can role play numerous characters, with a wide variety of skills and attributes. The gorgeous graphics and over 6 million DSA players could be reason enough to entice you to sign up for the beta…even if you don’t speak German!

For more examples of games on the web and mobile, please visit the Adobe Gaming Showcase.

Q&A with Wrestling Revolution’s Mat Dickie

We recently caught up with the solo game developer Mat Dickie who created the wildly entertaining mobile game Wrestling Revolution for iOS and Android. The game was downloaded more than 50,000 times in its first month on Google Play alone and has 300+ 5-star reviews. Mat’s YouTube video has been viewed nearly 80,000 times since its debut and really gives a sense of what Mat has created with Adobe Gaming technology. See the full Q&A below and see his formal success story here.

What is your name?
MD: I release games under the name of Mat Dickie, which is often abbreviated to the signature “MDickie”.

Where is your company based?
MD: London, England and Chengdu, China.

How long have you been creating games?
MD: I have been creating PC games since the turn of 2000, but only recently side-stepped into mobile gaming in the past 6 months.

What are you known for?
MD: I am known for specializing in wrestling with the popular “Wrestling MPire” series on PC and the new “Wrestling Revolution” series on mobile devices. I am also known for accomplishing these things on my own rather than working in a team.

Why do you think people will be drawn to the game?
MD: Wrestling has not been very well represented on mobile as yet, so fans of that genre are starving for something to play. With Wrestling Revolution, those fans also have an innovative new way of playing to get to grips with – and with up to 10 characters on screen, it’s more fun than the one-on-one matches most fighting games are limited to.

How did you come up with your idea for the gameplay?
MD: I spent half of my time in China, where I noticed that tablet gaming had been widely embraced. It convinced me that the format had a future and it was something I wanted to be a part of. I specifically sensed that touch-screen technology had a lot to offer a physical genre like wrestling. I knew the mainstream companies would never try anything new, so I took a chance on it myself and created the first truly touch-screen wrestling game – where you tap, pinch, and swipe for intuitive control.

How did you build the game?
MD: It was my first major project for mobile devices, so I had to put a lot of effort into learning how they work and adapting my way of doing things for a smaller screen. I had to go out and buy a whole range of devices so that I could see how well the game worked on each one and figure out solutions to any problems. I deliberately made the game 2D so that it could handle more wrestlers on screen. The fun comes first.

What platforms are you developing for and how do you choose which ones to target?
MD: I develop for Android and iOS primarily, but also release PC and Mac versions of my apps. I aim for the most popular devices that Flash can reach so that more people can play.

Why did you choose to use Flash?
MD: Not only could I simultaneously develop for both Android and iOS, but I could also stay true to my roots by releasing PC and Mac versions of my creations. And they were more reliable builds that I could be sure would function properly because all you need is Flash Player. To hit more platforms and have less issues was a win-win situation for me and my players. Flash is also capable of manipulating sprites on a grand scale, which allowed me to introduce an innovative new way of animating my characters.

How do you see the game growing over time?
MD: All I have released so far is the gameplay, which is in the process of evolving into a sophisticated RPG where you can live the life of a professional wrestler. I think we have to continue to embrace touch-screen technology and other new control methods. I like to joke that “real wrestlers don’t use buttons” so neither should my players!

Anything you want to add about working with Adobe Gaming technology?
MD: I made an important discovery in the early stages of my project, which is that Flash can be fed a high quality image and then be trusted to scale it down and use it as though it were a low quality image. And yet if you play the game on a larger screen, the original quality remains intact and is right there to be appreciated. This has been a blessing when releasing the same game on so many different sized devices. Flash automatically displays my sprites at their best – whether large or small. The resource management is astonishing.

Anything new in the pipeline for your company?
MD: 2012 has been a very exciting year for me already, so I am optimistic about the future. I will see Wrestling Revolution through to being the sophisticated game that I intended it to be, and then from 2013 onwards the game engine will be right there to drive other innovative concepts forward. I have more ideas than I could ever make in one lifetime!

Anything else that you want to add?
MD: I’d like to thank all the fellow developers who shared their stories and advice on the Adobe forums and all over the Internet. Whenever I get stuck, I simply run a search and somebody somewhere will have the answer! I’d also like to encourage people to follow the progress of Wrestling Revolution as it happens on my Facebook page.

For more information about Adobe & Gaming, as well as an amazing showcase of games, check out http://gaming.adobe.com/.

Indie Games Continue to Wow Players

We’ve recently seen a virtual avalanche of new mobile games coming down the pike that were developed using Flash and AIR, and more and more of them are using Stage 3D, taking advantage of hardware acceleration for screamingly fast game play.

There are two indie games I’ll highlight today, both of which were built with Flash technology: Super Hexagon and Wonderputt. Now available on the iOS AppStore, they’re both in the top 20 game apps. Super Hexagon is a super fast-paced race to survive game that will have your heart racing (can you last more than 20 seconds? If so, you’re doing incredibly well!). It was originally a free browser game that Terry Cavanaugh developed, and in its first 3 days on the AppStore, the mobile version sold more than 10,000 copies.

For a slightly different pace, Wonderputt is a beautifully illustrated mini-golf game by Reece Millidge. It looks gorgeous on an iPad 3 with Retina display, and was a finalist at the IGF Awards and the Develop Awards for Visual Art. Wonderputt was also originally a desktop game, and is one of Kotaku’s 6 Best Games on Web Browsers. There’s an in-depth look at the game development here.

Congratulations to both Terry and Reece, and we’ll be sharing many more new games with you both here and on gaming.adobe.com in the coming weeks! In the meantime, check out the crazy trailer below for Super Hexagon.

 

Live from Amsterdam, Adobe Project Primetime at IBC

Greetings from IBC, one of the largest conferences globally focused on broadcast professionals and the technologies that support them. Check out Adobe’s live coverage of the event.

We’re connecting with European broadcasters and pay TV operators to discuss Project Primetime — what it is, how it benefits media companies in individual markets, and what we’ve learned since launching the project earlier in 2012.

Speaking with current Adobe customers and partners, it’s clear that there’s a need in the marketplace for a unified technology stack that integrates video content publishing, ad serving, and analytics. There’s just too much device fragmentation and too much complexity throughout the ecosystem today. Adobe is working to address key industry pain points.

It’s also clear that many vendors are jumping on the “any content, any device, anytime, anywhere” bandwagon — nearly every technology provider at the conference seems to be offering an “end-to-end solution” that delivers on this promise. I’m not certain what most of these folks are actually capable of executing today, but I do know that Adobe is uniquely positioned to continue innovating in media, with industry-leading products across the entire value chain — from pre-production to post-production, and across streaming, ad decisioning, ad insertion, data management and measurement.

That’s a jargon-heavy way of saying that Adobe gets it, that we’re trying to solve the big problems.

If you happen to be at IBC this Sunday, please drop by our booth in Hall 7 to learn more about Project Primetime. We’re also hosting an invitation-only event on Sunday, September 9, where you can learn more about Adobe’s role in powering the 2012 Summer Olympics for both NBC Sports and the BBC — please register if you’d like to attend.

In the video below, and accompanying videos from the show, Adobe discusses Project Primetime, tackling major industry challenges and recent partner wins.

Adobe Helps Zynga Move to a New Farm

Hey farmer, how are your crops? Since FarmVille first debuted in 2009, it has grown to one of the most popular and well known social games on Facebook reaching more than 3 million daily active users.
Thanks to the success of FarmVille and other games, Zynga has quickly become a leader in the social gaming space and a constant source for hit social games on mobile and Web including Words with Friends, CityVille, CastleVille, Ruby Blast and Zynga Poker, among others.

Today marks a new milestone with the launch of FarmVille 2. In FarmVille 2, Zynga created a next-generation social game that delivers a brand new farming experience through stunning visuals, beautiful animations and new ways to visit and interact with friends.

We’re excited that FarmVille 2 is Zynga’s first game developed for Adobe Flash Player 11 using Stage 3D technology, and is a significant example of an improved 3D game development workflow. The immersive experiences and optimized performance enabled by Stage 3D allows Zynga to extend the game to more players who are able to forge a deeper emotional connection to the farms they create, and have an even better game experience overall.

Our work with Zynga also incorporated some new technology that’s got developers buzzing. Adobe’s Project Monocle played a major role for performance optimization during the development of FarmVille 2. With Project Monocle, subtle bottlenecks in the development process were quickly identified and fixed thanks to the level of details and granularity exposed by the cutting edge tool. Soon, we’ll be making Project Monocle available to all, and we’re already hearing great reports from beta testers on the benefits of using this technology for their games.

Check out FarmVille 2 today on Facebook at http://apps.facebook.com/farmville-two/.

Happy harvesting, and for more information about games built with Adobe Gaming technologies, Stage 3D for Flash Player and Adobe AIR, visit gaming.adobe.com.