Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Wild Pockets: Create your own 3D Games Online for Free

At the DEMOfall 08 conference today, Sim Ops Studios debuted a free tool for creating 3-D games online in a web browser, called Wild Pockets. It gives a casual users, the tools needed to build rich and interesting games online, and share them with family and friends.

The web based game creation tool allows you to create a game by dragging and dropping objects into a 3-D world editor. There is a large library of objects and environments to choose from, including some basic primitives to particle systems. There is also an option to import images in the editor from your computer or the web.The official press release states:

With an easy to use interface and innovative social features such as
collaborative game development, a user-generated digital marketplace,
and embed tags for viral game distribution, Wild Pockets gives game
creators of all levels everything they need to create the next
breakthrough game online.

Paul Preece, Founder/CEO of CasualCollective.com further added:

"The Wild Pockets platform provides fast and easy 3D content generation
capabilities and makes it simple to distribute the games created. The
platform could help us make the leap to next generation 3D casual

While this promotes the concept of Open Source Gaming, there is still lots to cover to get to my Open Source Gaming paradise (will do a report on it soon). Sim Ops weren't the first to present this concept either. Microsoft presented PopFly earlier this year that uses its Silverlight technology, and even export it to number of social networks including Facebook. Electronic Arts also has a SimsCarnival site where you can create your own game. And then there is XNA Game Studios, which is a set of tools for more professional game developers to easily create games for Windows or Xbox 360.

Wild Pockets is much simpler though, and builds on the concept of Social Networking. You can start building a game and invite your friend to join you as you both colaborate simultaniously. The technology is not aimed at hardcore console gamers but rather casual players on the PC. When your game is finalized, you can embed it on any website. It requires a special plugin to be installed in order to run. The company is releasing its developer tools today and expects a full launch in early 2009.

Feel free to share your comments about this, and stick around as I write about my idea of Open Source Gaming.

Prism reflects Web Apps to Desktop

Prism for Firefox is an upcoming powerful extension that lets you create stand-alone web apps directly from Firefox. These applications run in their own process and have there own separate memory. This feature has been presented in other browsers as well, like Google Chrome, but Prism gives more flexibility even though it is still in the labs.

This blog post is written on Google Docs with Prism, and I had a very smooth experience even though I had a lot of other applications running in the background. Prism gives you the option to hide all the browser GUI components or choose the one you like (I preferred to have the Status Bar visible) and you can even customize the icon of the application.

Prism applications maintain their own session and are not bounded to Firefox. So you can sign in as a different user in the same service at the same time. This is a huge advantage if you want to check two Gmail accounts at the same time. You can be logged in to both simultaneously.

The normal browser context menu also disappears leaving you with the pretty basic edit options (Cut/Copy/Paste etc). This however didn't appeal to me as I wanted to use Ubiquity here. But since this is at a early development stage, we can hope to see that extensions would find their way into Prism. Note that prism does present an option to install addons but there aren't any available at this time.

As always, I would love to hear your thoughts about this new extension, which is pretty much an application on its own right.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Browser available for download!


Google Chrome to be available for public beta at September 2, 2008 19:00 UTC.


As I have mentioned below, the browser is not available for download yet so please stop posting links to download it. Once its released I will post an update so its best to just stay tuned here.

I ran across many blogs and news sites a few hours ago that were claiming to give the newly announced Google Chrome browser (or a direct link to it) for free download. While I will not point out the exact sites, I will still warn readers that the official word on the browser will come on September 2, 2008. Apparently, the so called Google Chrome which is given for download is the Flock web browser with a theme applied to it.