In a March 27 blog post, Emmy Huang, director of product management for Gaming Solutions at Adobe, said the premium features for gaming with Flash Player 11.2 will enable game developers to publish advanced games with console-quality experiences to Flash Player. The Flash 11.2 and AIR 3.2 technology had been hosted on Adobe Labs, the companys labs site up until this point.
Huang said gaming represents a major opportunity, not only for Adobe, but for the entire industry. Huang wrote:
"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 $4.94 billion in 2011 to $8.64 billion in 2014, according to the Casual Games Association. With unparalleled reach to more than 1.3 billion PCs, Adobe Flash Player is a catalyst for this growth by providing a consistent, powerful and innovative gaming platformthe 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."
In addition, Adobe announced it is collaborating with Unity Technologies to enable Unity customers to publish Web-based 3D games, like Madfingers Shadowgun, to Flash Player using the premium features from directly within Unitys tools.
Were 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 of Unity Technologies, in a statement. 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.
Huang noted that 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 Adobe 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, Huang said in her post. 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.
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 were very excited with the tools Adobe is bringing to browser-based games, Kevin Chou, CEO and co-founder of Kabam, a maker of massively multiplayer social games, said in a statement. We rely on Flash Players 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. Thats what we live for as a company. Youll see this technology and enhanced game quality this year in our upcoming slate of high-performance, next-gen games.
As a multiplatform and leading Flash developer, weve never seen a greater opportunity to produce high-caliber gameson the Web and on Facebookthat are artistically and technically outstanding, Steve Couture, CEO of Frima Studio, said in a statement. With more than a billion installs, no other technology comes close to Flashs 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.
"Every day millions of users enjoy popular online games through Flash Player, such as Rovios Angry Birds, Zyngas Farmville and EAs Sims Social on Facebook, along with Gamegoos Qi-Xiong Hegemony, one of Chinas top ten online games. And were 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, were 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."
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, Will Harbin, CEO of KIXEYE, said in a statement. Flash Player and Alchemy 2 will help us ensure that our [high-performance], hyper-accessible games operate flawlessly in stunning 3D. We plan to utilize the technologys full capabilities in our lineup of next-generation RPG titles scheduled to launch this fall.
Meanwhile, Huang said with the release of Flash Player 11.2, Adobe is making premium features available free for content published prior to Aug. 1. Starting Aug. 1, these features will be licensed for commercial use, and there is no charge for the first $50,000 in application revenues. The use of premium features within Adobe AIR, including for mobile applications for iOS and Android, will be royalty-free, she said.
Weve designed this pricing to encourage the kind of innovation and experimentation that often helps to spark inspired and inventive games, Huang said. 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 Adobes first-party tools. For more details about Adobes licensing program and premium features, developers can go to www.adobe.com/go/fpl.