Latest Posts

  • The one in which we do a podcast interview, VJ at Blip Fest and tech edit an HTML5 book

    It’s been a busy few weeks for both Ilija and I. He has been off in Melbourne VJing at the Blip Festival. It was the biggest chip music event to hit Australia and had a formidable line-up including Bit Shifter, Nullsleep and my personal favourites Trash80. There are various videos and pictures of the show, all of them varying from “ok” to “terrible” in quality at the moment, but here you can see Saitone play while Ilija mixes the visuals in the background:


    Now he’s finished playing with video mixers for a while he may even post the “Making of” the pixeltastic new RGCD logo 🙂

    A book you say?

    Over on my side of the planet I’ve been kept busy mostly buried deep in HTML5 land. I started out the year by doing a technical edit of Jesse Freeman’s new book Introducing HTML5 Game Development published by O’Reilly. It’s one of O’Reilly’s new short-format books, meaning it weighs in at just over 100 pages rather than the usual epic tomes they publish. Jesse focussed the book specifically on coding with the ImpactJS framework and walks you through the process, start to finish, including wrapping it up for mobile. If you’re new to ImpactJS and want a good cheap overview of using it, then for $14 you can’t really go wrong (and members of his NY User Group can get 50% off even that low price!)

    … and a podcast!

    Matt and Geoff over at Lost Decade Games record a regular podcast called the Lostcast. Being html5 indie game devs they focus their podcast on and around this subject. Recent topics have included the Zynga cloning debacle and HTML5 the Bad Parts. Episode 9 was released today and features a nearly hour long interview with me about the subjects of html5, flash and game development in general. I had great fun chatting with the guys and thank them for inviting me to interview. To anyone who listens I apologise for rambling on for too long in parts, but hope you take away something interesting from the discussions anyway!

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  • Flash Gaming Summit 2012 – 15% discount and 2 free tickets giveaway



    If you’re able to get to San Francisco on March 4th 2012 (the day before GDC) then I’d strongly recommend attending the Flash Gaming Summit. This is the 4th year it has been running and it’s a great place to meet pretty much everyone of any importance in the Flash gaming world. Sponsors, companies, portals and fellow developers will be in attendance. The topic this year is “Maximise your game” which is a PR way of saying “hold onto your IP”. Accordingly it will cover taking your Flash IP onto other platforms, and who knows – you may even meet someone who has actually made some money from Android games 😉

    The speakers list is impressive: CrowdStar, KIXEYE, Adobe, The9 and BioWare to name a few. Definitely go and hear what Thiabault Imbert (Flash Player Product Manager) has to say in his Flash: The Next Generation talk. The summary is enticing: “In this session the Adobe gaming team will discuss the next generation of Flash technology that will enable incredible games for both the web and mobile devices. Topics will include new GPU rendering technology and advanced profiling tools that will empower developers to take their games to the next level on the Flash Platform.” – maybe he’ll even demo FalconJS.

    If you’re anything like me it’s probably the more indie dev speakers you’ll want to hear and there’s a good selection of them. The Ninja Kiwi guys will be talking about multi-player game development, Ben Garney will cover “the death of Flash” and Sean McGee is hosting a panel about Flash development circa 2012. Iain Lobb will also be doing a talk about making a “real” 2D game in Flash, i.e. apparently something that doesn’t use Flixel. BTW I’ll give away one Amazon gift voucher to an attendee  if he disses HTML5 more than 10 times in his session 😉

    It sounds like it’ll be a great conference. If you’re going to be in the area for GDC anyway then it makes complete sense to attend, or if it’s easy for you to get there then do so too! The organisers have offered me a discount code. So if you want to buy a ticket you can save 15% by registering here and using the code: promo_photonstorm_15.

    I’ve also got 2 free tickets to give away. If you’d like to win one just post a comment to this article and I’ll pick 2 people at random at the end of the week.

    The full program schedule here:

  • Indie Game Music Bundle 2 is here including the Cat Astro Phi soundtrack

    The Indie Game Music Bundle 2 is here. You can pay what you want for 5 indie game soundtracks including Aquaria, Sword and Sworcery, To the Moon, Jamestown and Machinarium.

    But if you pay $10 or more you’ll also get the complete soundtracks for another 9 games (so far!) one of which is the superb 8-bit soundtrack from our Gameboy tribute action adventure Cat Astro Phi, composed by the masterful Disasterpeace 🙂

    Full details at


  • The Reality of HTML5 Game Development and making money from it

    Note: This was written near the end of January 2012 and as such reflects the state of the technology and markets at the time. Everything is moving so fast a lot of the information below is subject to change, so bear that in mind.

    HTML5 game development and indeed the abilities of web browsers are in state of rapid evolution right now. On the HTML5 Game Devs site that I run I’ve been noticing an increasing pace of new content, game releases, tutorials, business news and technology. High profile and high quality game releases such as the Microsoft sponsored Cut the Rope are making headlines across the world, and engaging the public more than ever before. But what is the reality of developing an HTML5 game today? Especially for those coming from a different platform. And more importantly is it possible to actually make any money doing it?

    HTML5 is just a mark-up standard!

    Relax 🙂 When I talk about “HTML5” I’m doing so from the popular media use of the word, rather than the technical one. On a technical level HTML5 is of course just a specification for a mark-up language. But the media has chosen to use the term as an umbrella, spanning lots of browser related technologies including WebGL, JavaScript, Web Sockets, GLSL, Web Audio, NaCl, Canvas, DOM, CSS3 and more. As a whole these things do not comprise “HTML5”, indeed they have their own standards, but I guess to preserve the sanity of the layman (and journalists?) that isn’t really what HTML5 means any more.

    What is an  HTML5 game?

    This seemingly innocuous question actually has a myriad of answers, and can get complex pretty fast. While I could say that on a basic level an HTML5 game is made using JavaScript paired with a browser based technology, that isn’t strictly true as it’s actually possible to make complete (albeit simple) games using purely CSS3. So let’s approach it by listing the technologies available to HTML5 game developers and what they offer:

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  • HTML5 Game is Live

    As I mentioned in my New Year post I am focusing a lot on HTML5 / JavaScript game development at the moment. I’ve been investigating the scene for a while and there seemed to be a real lack of game developer specific sites. So I created one. HTML5 Game is now live in its first public beta.

    Right now it’s a news stream where I collate together all of the interesting articles I see floating around the web each day. A short summary / extract will lead on to the full piece, so you can skim the news list and see which items interest you most. I’m also including new game releases, tutorials and the business and social sides as well.

    In the coming months I’ll add a developers forum, market place and some home-grown articles 🙂 If you’d like to help me run the site by contributing news items then please drop me a line. For those who prefer their news delivered via twitter, just follow html5gamedevs. And for those that prefer to digest it via email there is a subscription box on the site which uses the WordPress post notification system, so you can be sure your email address is safe and won’t be spammed / sold to anyone.

    I’m currently working on a new site design at the moment, as I’m sure it’s quite obvious where the inspiration for the current one comes from 🙂 but for now I just needed to let the news flow. Happy reading!

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