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[web] Developing browser based games

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What is the best way to develop broswer based games? i originally wanted to use flash, but it costs to much for me. would java be a good choice? if so, how hard is it to learn and where can i find some tutorials and tools to makle java applications?

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Depends what sort of game you're talking about.

For some types of game, Flash works.

For more complex ones, Java would be better (Popcap.com etc).

However a lot of people find that it's quite feasible to develop browser-based games with just HTML (possibly javascript too), using server-side technologies. These typically don't require any "special" tools to develop, but can get complicated.

Mark

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I've made some games with Java applets since like you, I found Flash extremely expensive (and I'm glad I took this route). I spent a while learning Java and making heavy use of google to find all the information I needed before. It's not as easy as using Flash (what I've heard, never actually used Flash before) but if you're motivated you can certainly do it. Googling for Java applet tutorials brought me some good things.

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Java was developed by Sun and javascript was developed by Netscape. They are considered unrelated even though you may see some of the same certain words used. Java applets, which are what you'll be making, are sent to your browser from the server as Java bytecode (the portable code that's interpreted and run by the Java Virtual Machine), while javascript is sent as readable text just like HTML. A Java applet will allow you the full flexability of a "real" language (C++, C, asm, etc.) because it is in fact using Java(tm). There are security restrictions though placed on applets: they cannot make connections, they cannot execute (or open?) files on the client, etc. If you're using firefox hit ctrl-u and the first thing you will see is javascript (most likely, if you're browser is not ancient...). I guess one reason for the existance of javascript is to load processing off the server onto the clients.

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It should be noted that you can do a lot more in javascript than people generally realise.

In addition to manipulation of HTML forms etc, you can use:

- DHTML-like page modifications to provide more interactive applications - hide / show elements on a page and move stuff around (+more)
- Proper "OO" programming - javascript has a system to create objects and a fairly usable string library
- Manipulation of non-displayed XML documents with DOM
- Client - server communications with XMLHTTPRequest objects etc

Using these it's quite reasonable to make a simple game (puzzle game, card game etc) that runs in the browser WITHOUT Java.

Java is potentially more flexible:
- Server push (javascript can't make sockets directly, you can fudge it)
- Serialisation / RMI / EJB for cleverer client-server RPC operations
- A strongly-typed, compiled language.
- easier code reuse between client and server components
- Rich libraries for all sorts of things
- (Maybe) Better input handling, sound etc.

In Mozilla, it's certainly possible to do some fairly advanced stuff.

Anyway here's some really crap examples of what I can do with javascript

- Like space invaders (Works in IE and Mozilla)
- Snake game (Works in Mozilla, could work in others with minor tweaks)

Mark

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Guest Anonymous Poster
you forgot js wolfenstien

http://www.icarusindie.com/DoItYourSelf/rtsr/javascript3d/index.php

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thanks for the links and info, but i think ill go with Java. i have one more question though: Do i need the java 2 sdk to develop games, or not? im asking because it is a large download and i only have dial-up

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well, i found out that i need to SDK to develop Java games, so i guess java is out of the question. is there any other software or tools i could use to develop Browser-based games?

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Quote:
Original post by Kylotan
The Java SDK is free. Did you mean something else?

Methinks his problem is that it is a rather hefty download, and not really practical on dial up.

Most of the good Java books include CDs with the SDK (and maybe an IDE or two if you're lucky) on them. Have a browse over at amazon or a bookshop.

OT.

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the reason i didnt download ths sdk was because it was a large download size and i have dial-up. ill look for some books though, so hopefully that will solve my problems. thanks for everyones help.

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