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I have heard of many plugins/browser technologies that are useful for games, but I didn't dive into any of them yet because I've assumed that omni-support wasn't quite there. By omni-support, I mean all browsers and all OSs.

Since we've recently had many new game-specific plugins pop up (e.g. Unity), new web standards pop up (e.g. WebGL), and existing standards gain better support in IE (e.g. SVG), I'm wondering if this has changed.

There are three fundamental requirements I see to making immersive games:

  • Solid mid-to-low level video/audio support (2D and 3D are both interesting)
  • Mouse capture
  • Full screen

Are there technologies out there that support all three of these, that are cross-platform and cross-browser (including all the big browsers)?

Standardized solutions are preferrable, but plugin-based solutions are okay, as long as they support free or very cheap development.

Edit

I realize I posed my question as "are there any such technologies". I'm actually interested in all such technologies. If there is only one, it may still be useful to list other technologies, what they lack, and when they might get there.

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I have low rep, otherwise I'd add "mouse" and "full-screen" tags –  Merlyn Morgan-Graham Mar 28 '11 at 3:05

1 Answer 1

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Unity is still your best bet. It works in Chrome/IE/Firefox/Safari and on Mac and PC. They're playing around with a linux port, but I wouldn't expect to see that be live for quite some time.

Unfortunately the so-called open standards just aren't there yet in terms of implementation.

Pretty soon Adobe Molehill will be a lot more pervasive if you're looking for 3D rendering in a browser. If you're just looking for sheer install base, this will be the most applicable. Then again, Unity is working on exporting to that platform as well.

Unity does a pretty good job of supporting all sorts of old video cards (even pre-DX7 hardware), it has 3D audio, and of course it can go fullscreen. I don't know what specifically you mean by "mouse capture" but you can do FPS style controls with it.

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By mouse capture, I mean locking the mouse to the view portal. The goal being to keep you immersed in an action game, rather than wild mouse movements/clicks ripping you out to your desktop or other elements on a browser page. I've seen this done in hacky or painful ways (usually in browser games) and quite nice ways (OpenGL/DirectX/Virtual machines without the integration options installed). Usually you escape mouse capture by exiting to a menu or a drop-down console, or using alt-tab. I mention it because I've seen flash/html5/svg apps that needed it, and I think it might not exist. –  Merlyn Morgan-Graham Mar 28 '11 at 3:32
    
Also, "FPS style" nearly sums it up. I've seen terrible implementations of this, too, that responded to mouse movements outside the window, but still allowed other apps to respond to clicks. –  Merlyn Morgan-Graham Mar 28 '11 at 3:37
    
Yes, Unity has mouse capture. –  Nevermind Mar 28 '11 at 6:14

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