Blog > Hi-Res 3D Games in Browsers? Firefox Says, “Yes!”

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Hi-Res 3D Games in Browsers? Firefox Says, “Yes!”

Posted by on Thursday, April 18th, 2013

Browser-Based Game Evony

Image source: Mmohuts.com

Browser-based games don’t have a very good reputation for incredible 3D art. It’s not terribly surprising — browsers act as the lowest common denominator platform that needs to run equally well on high-tech gaming rigs as well as that decade-old computer your grandma has. Plus, there just hasn’t been much development in this area. Flash games and companies like Zynga have been exploring clever new ways to play games in a browser, but for the most part browsers have been years behind standalone programs and gaming consoles.

Firefox hopes to change all that.

Firefox had its moment in the spotlight for a few years when it rivaled and, in some countries, surpassed defending heavyweight Internet Explorer as the most popular browser. Firefox’s popularity was short lived, however, as Chrome quickly rose to prominence as the go-to browser. Die hard Googlephiles and traditional IE afficianados may soon find themselves converting to Firefox. Earlier this month, the Mozilla Foundation unveiled new technology that could fundamentally change browser-based gaming.

Behold, in all of its high-res glory:

It’s all basically a suped-up version of JavaScript that allows Firefox to run highly demanding games that put clunky, comparatively low-resolution games like Evony Online to shame. The programmers at the Mozilla Foundation hope to integrate Unreal Engine 3 technology, a favorite among game developers. They also announced that they plan to work alongside gaming titans like Disney and EA in order to make the transition into Firefox-based gaming as seamless as possible.

Obviously, this opens up a new world of possibilities for mobile gaming because users will be able to access their favorite shoot-’em-ups without needing to download any apps. More convenient, higher-powered gaming means more gamers, which means more revenue for the ever-growing video games industry.

And that means jobs for you. If browser-based gaming really takes off, there will be a flurry of hiring as companies like Zynga move to beef up their games with more advanced 3D graphics.

Gilfor's Tales

Image source: Web.appstorm.net

There’s only one potential snag: Firefox needs other browsers to get on board with the idea if browser-based gaming is ever going to get popular. Game developers aren’t going to want to create games that can only run on one browser, even if that browser does represent a sizable chunk of the population. Ideally, they’ll be able to churn out games that run equally well on Firefox, IE, Safari, and Chrome for maximum profit potential.

Honestly, I might be over-analyzing this a little bit. XBox, Playstation, and Nintendo all feature platform-specific games, and these consoles are just raking in the money. In the not-so-distant future, we could see Internet users loading up specific browsers to run specific games. At this point, with the popularity of Facebook games and the advancement of browser technology, it really seems like an inevitability that browser-based games will become the next big thing in gaming. And behind each of these games will be 3D designers like you, trailblazing new 3D techniques and reaping the profits.

One Response to “Hi-Res 3D Games in Browsers? Firefox Says, “Yes!””

  1. Yota says:

    We also say yes, to hi-res 3D games in browsers. Using HTML5 technology, we used Quake 4 assets to make the following video a year ago.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJg_BmY9-8o

    Okay, it may not be as impressive as what Firefox and Epic did but it still shows what HTML5 technology can do. There are still many obstacles to overcome but we have developed a game portal for HTML5 games, called turbulenz.com. We have 5+ games on the site and one of the game is a 3D game. Check out http://www.polycraftgame.com for more info on this game.

    It is still at early stage but we have Polycraft running in mobile browsers too. The current problem is its performance but everything else works well.

    We are working very hard to make the web the ultimate gaming destination for all gamers.

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