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I've got around 10 years behind me of casually creating AS1/2/3 games and have found myself wondering recently what other options are available for web-based games.

I have recently found haXe and will probably start coding in that, since it is largely based on AS3/ECMAScript, and I am also aware of JavaScript/jQuery etc and HTML5 being suitable for purpose, but what else is there?

What up and coming languages are being used to develop / are targeted at making web-based games?

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You're on the right track with HTML5. Most of the tech around it is certainly not "new" per se, but JavaScript games being considered for real-world game development is. Mozilla recently started an initiative called Game On 2010 which is getting a lot of attention, so you can bet that Canvas and JavaScript-based games will be picking up tons of speed in the next few months.

Another choice for web-based games would be Unity. The major downside is that the games require the Unity browser plugin, and its penetration is very low at the moment. While something like 90%+ of average Internet users have installed flash, Unity is much lower (in the single digits last I read). That said, Unity is very powerful and has been gaining lots of ground with developers this year.

Most modern browsers can handle almost all of the tech that HTML5 games require. The biggest hit in user base is currently that Canvas isn't supported in current versions of Internet Explorer, but that'll change when IE9 is released. So my suggestion is definitely to beef up on your understanding of JavaScript and Canvas.

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excanvas.js deals with IE7+ reasonably well, if your graphics aren't too complex. – Stephen Belanger Nov 21 '10 at 16:45

I've seen a number of interactive "things" lately done in Processing. Not sure I would call most of them games, but they are on that spectrum.

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There is also processing.js, a port of Processing to javascript. ( ) – CeeJay Nov 21 '10 at 12:36

I am going for Unity3D as I like the fact that I can develop crossplatform once I buy the license for this game-engine.

For a start I will do Webbased crossplatform (PC/MAC) applications, but later I might go for the smartphones.

I've done some stuff with Flash and Actionscript 3.0, but I feel that I have to reinvent too many things for games, Unity3D fx. comes with build in Physiscs, 3D world, camera, lights, texturemapping, shaders, collision, input-controls, sound engine etc. I know it needs to be installed (2 mb plugin) but its very fast to install and the results looks stunning compared to most of the 3D samples I've seen so far with Flash.

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ohhh yes and the reason for testing Unity3D for me, is that its totally free to use 95% of the features - forever! so if I never get finished with a game I dont have to buy the PRO license first. – BerggreenDK Nov 21 '10 at 2:48

Have you considered Silverlight?

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Silverlight + Azure would be a powerful platform if you're experienced with .NET – Kenneth Posey Mar 19 '11 at 19:19

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