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What type of frameworks are more popular games using?

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I'm a beginner programmer and I was trying to figure out how I should go about making a game or two. Are games like Dangerous Adventure 2 or Elephant Quest made with flash or html5? Looking at the DA2 source it looks like it might be flash.
 
I was leaning toward html5 because I have experience with javascript. Any advice helps, thanks.
Edited by SophiaL

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I have no idea about Dangerous Adventure 2 or Elephant Quest, but many browser games are made with flash because either when the development started the developers didn't regard html5 as mature enough, or the companies have many ActionScript developers and don't want to retrain them. Taking into account how eager are the major browsers to drop support for Flash, I would advise to use html5 instead, regardless of whatever big companies do. Also, not that many years ago, html5 was yet immature for many types of games, but that has changed recently. For what is worth, at my previous employer we switched from flash to html5 more than 3 years ago.

 

In your post you only mention html5 or flash, but since you ask for frameworks on your title, you can take a look at Phaser or Pixi.js.

Edited by Avalander

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If you are comfortable with flash and you like it - you should use it. Additionally as far as I know The Adobe Flash supports exporting as a HTML + JS so technically you could develop in flash but export as HTML + JS,

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Flash runs fine on ios devices when deployed with air as an app and also works on android devices, they have just released support for apple tv too. Thousands of successful games are built this way.

 

A game I saw recently that looked similar to the first title you posted is made with flash/air.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPA120SfpXU

 

I personally still think flash/air is a great way to make games:

One code base and it runs on web (desktop only), desktop, ios and android.

It is easy to learn and free if you don't need adobe's ide.

You can test on android and ios devices from a pc!

There is a great profiling tool called scout that help get the most out performance wise.

 

Sure it doesn't have every feature under the sun built in but a great set all the same and has most things covered.

Also pretty sure flash ships with Microsoft... never seen a pc it doesn't run on yet?

 

Still js is arguably easier to learn/pickup and also no compile times is great!

 

I would recommend just going with what you are most comfortable with.

I have made games with unity,javascript and flash/air and each has pros and cons, but the point being they were all able to make what I needed them to.

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You're really right bwhiting, for me it's big news. And it's confusing why Steve said they didn't allow Flash and now they "allow" it anyway through AIR. What was the deal about that?
Is that why each iOS app includes its AIR runtime?

 

http://www.adobe.com/devnet/air/articles/packaging-air-apps-ios.html

Is that representative of packaging an AIR app, or is there a more straight-forward way?

I got no Flash on Windows 7, though Microsoft doesn't support it as an ActiveX anymore but they say they work closely with Adobe to support it natively via Windows Update.

So they didn't drop it much after all,
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14949869

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And it's confusing why Steve said they didn't allow Flash and now they "allow" it anyway through AIR.
 

 

Most likely the same reasons game consoles reject it, unless it is compiled and built into the finished product.  Any time you allow external code to run or be compiled it is a risk for the platform.

 

 

If Flash is an external application then the other program needs to be installed and configured correctly, then Flash basically compiles or interprets the script on the fly.  If it compiles the code it opens up all kinds of security concerns regarding permissions of the newly-compiled program.  If it runs it dynamically from inside Flash then it has the same permissions as Flash has, which may not match what the program needs.  If there is a need to kill the app or remove the permissions, that doesn't fit well.

 

And of course, if Flash is running it then you get all the exploits Flash is famous for. 

 

 

If instead the file is compiled through Air or through a system in a larger game, then the product is something standalone.  There is no generation of an additional executable which may introduce permissions problems. There are limited problems of the program escaping the sandbox as the sandbox is unique to each program instead of using a shared Flash sandbox.  There are still some Flash exploits available, but since the executable is locked it can be controlled through sandbox protections and the permissions the user selects (although users granting all permissions to everything is a separate issue).  Many problems solved with a requirement that no compiling or modifiable scripts can be executed.

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The flash runtime was thrown out from having too many memory leaks and poor performance. Just like they would do if one or another JVM implementation would fail on the platform.

 

Android did the same with OpenCL to promote their own RenderScript. Nobody uses RenderScript because it is slower than software rasterization.

Edited by Dawoodoz

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Flash is the victim of quite a bit of FUD and propaganda (thanks Apple), much of the criticism isn't reasonable, or is no worse than the alternatives when examined objectively.  And of course you have the political/business aspects, Apple had the power to do serious damage to a platform poised to destroy their App Store profits (mostly from gaming, like Flash excels at), so of course they pulled the trigger.  And Adobe, being much smaller with the marketing/communication skills of a chimp (vs. Apple's marketing machine), of course didn't win that popularity contest.  Even with Microsoft building it into their Edge browser, Flash indeed seems to be on it's way out, so I guess there's little point in beating this dead horse topic.  I will add though, the HTML5 security exploits have started, and won't be going away.  Exploit stats will now be harder to gauge due to more fragmented implementations (which brings other fun issues), but security risk will always be there.  Now we'll have to deal with more browser exploits.  

AIR is an interesting alternative platform, absolutely great to develop for.  I've read somewhere (can't remember) that supposedly Apple was legally blocked from banning AIR from their devices in Europe.  I'm not really a fan of legal bullying (or other types), but at least it gives people an alternative software platform choice.  AIR isn't supported on Linux, so I can't really get too enthusiastic about it anymore, but Adobe's site does claim a wide range of support with hardware acceleration.  Adobe seems to be focusing on the "casual" gaming market now.  

 

I have zero interest in mobile gaming dev or the casual market, but if I did, I'd have to seriously consider AIR because it's an easy way (outside of something commercial like Unity) to create something cross platform with a single code base.  

For the type of things described by the OP I think Unity is probably going to be the most popular. Maybe someone here has proof otherwise, but I'm pretty confident that HTML/JS are not particularly popular for gaming on mobile, or even desktops really.

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Flash is the victim of quite a bit of FUD and propaganda (thanks Apple)

 

No, Flash was an abominably unstable and insecure platform. How it was still riddled with holes right up into 2016 despite the platform being largely stagnant, I have no idea. It shouldn't be possible. But it shows that the software is just not fit for purpose.

 

the HTML5 security exploits have started, and won't be going away. Exploit stats will now be harder to gauge due to more fragmented implementations (which brings other fun issues), but security risk will always be there

 

There are fewer of them, they're getting caught and patched with more urgency, and browser makers don't typically try to foist adware on you when you update, and if they did, you have a choice of providers.

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Well, I don't mind discussing the topic, actually I think it's good to hear other perspectives from people with in depth knowledge.  Usually people that don't like Flash I see only know that they don't like ads (easily blocked, and they're usually unblockable HTML/JS crap now anyway) or the stupid "skip intro" movies (extinct now, a good thing).  Flash definitely hasn't been stagnant though!  They've had many new releases over years, adding major features like AS3, JIT compilation, hardware acceleration, multi-threading, new security features... I know I'm forgetting things.  All that stuff was way before W3C got their act together enough to even get specs out for HTML5, so that we could be spammed with new harder to block popup ads.  :)  Makes you wonder, maybe corporations didn't like how Flash was so easily blocked, not good for marketing!  They are the ones running these standards committees, after all.

Maybe you're an Apple or a FireFox user (both had questionable motives, particularly Apple, and neither put much effort in to improve integration), and maybe there were more problems in conjunction with those, but who's fault is it if it's working fine in other major browsers?  Hard to say I think.  FireFox has an unusual plug-in architecture which possibly caused issues (I've seen browsers crash too, but almost never due to Flash).  Apple has their own control issues which Adobe had pointed to as a problem.  So I don't really trust those guys, Flash was certainly working well enough to obtain record setting numbers of installs, and embedded itself into commercial software so firmly that it's still there today.  Anything with that kind of popularity will always be a huge exploit target (like Java and Windows) and there will always be many people with issues because of the sheer size of the user base.  

 

In contrast to FireFox and Apple's terrible security records, Flash seems to have done pretty damn good.  

I'm pretty sure Flash doesn't come with any adware, I don't remember it ever, so you're probably thinking of Java.  Or otherwise you could have downloaded malware (a fake version of Flash not from Adobe, no wonder it would crash then).  Flash was one of the most successful and popular front-end software platforms in computing history, it's hard to believe that'd happen because it's terrible.  

I'm not sure what stats you're looking at for HTML5, but I don't think the HTML5 security stuff is going to just get patched once and go away.  Everything ends up with security exploits eventually.  All that code still has to be maintained for new browsers, new hardware, new drivers, new features, and so on, so new issues will always arise.  Since browsers are now accessing the same lower level API calls that Flash accesses, and implementing many similar features (JIT compilation for JS, hardware acceleration), they've expanded their own attack surfaces.  So I have trouble believing biased critics like Apple when they claim that there's an actual difference here in terms of security.  Especially considering browser security stats I've seen, these guys aren't any smarter than Adobe's devs.  

I suppose if platform fragmentation is counted as a positive for security, it might be a small "improvement" (with it's own cost).  If your platform is less consistent and reliable due to fragmentation, it makes malware harder to create (as well as regular software, of course), so I guess there's that.  Not sure that's a great strategy, making all the software suck.  And now the security problems are going to be harder to track and measure; the exploits and security stats will be scattered into browser stats, so it might look like an improvement, but maybe not a real difference.  It's a complex topic for sure, not nearly as simple as so many content-less critical tech bloggers would have us believe.

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I'm pretty sure Flash doesn't come with any adware, I don't remember it ever, so you're probably thinking of Java. Or otherwise you could have downloaded malware (a fake version of Flash not from Adobe, no wonder it would crash then). Flash was one of the most successful and popular front-end software platforms in computing history, it's hard to believe that'd happen because it's terrible.

It actually depends on where you are downloading flash from, but in some countries Adobe wants you to install other programs such as McAfee when you download (or even update) flash. You need to remember to uncheck the box before you start the download. Once it also wanted me to install an Intel utility, I don't remember which one.

In contrast to FireFox and Apple's terrible security records, Flash seems to have done pretty damn good.
I'd be curious to know where you got that impression from.

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Maybe you're an Apple or a FireFox user (both had questionable motives, particularly Apple, and neither put much effort in to improve integration), and maybe there were more problems in conjunction with those, but who's fault is it if it's working fine in other major browsers?


Blame-shifting? Really? What's your dog in this fight? If Adobe wanted Flash to survive they should have done what was necessary to make it happen.

Why on earth would it be the job of Apple or Firefox to make Flash succeed? That's like jumping off your roof and calling the ground unreasonable for breaking your legs.

The suggestion that the IETF are a bunch of cartoon villains conspiring against some noble, benighted software is laughable.

The minimum standard of living for the web has exceeded Flash. Evolution is taking it's course here.

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2015 was indeed a bad year (much of it was due to that single highly advertised 'hacking team' incident), although they patched these things in a matter of days, which is extremely fast.  Before 2014 the numbers drop significantly, and the majority look to be only in recent years from what I've seen.  Could be due to Adobe reassigning staff duties and cutting corners, the additional publicity, malware authors getting better or changing tactics, who knows.  To be clear, I'd agree that security is indeed a weakness.  Now we'll never know if that battle could have been sustained, were the platform not under siege by so many competing interests, or if a bigger/better company was behind it.  I'm mostly saying here that we need to at least take these things with a grain of salt, because the harshest critics have ulterior motives.  I'd be curious to see Symantec's methodology for ranking exploits, how the others rank in terms of severity, and what data there is on how much actual damage occurred, all of which may paint a different picture.  

In raw numbers, very rough NIST National Vulnerability Database stats (all-time numbers, so keep in mind Flash's age in comparison) look something like this below.  Flash isn't a stand-out among the crowd here, especially considering that for many years the thing was on virtually every PC connected to the Internet, in contrast to most of these.  I would expect far worse numbers with that in mind.  

FireFox 1,484
iOS 883
Flash 991

Chrome 1402
Safari 746 (why so many for such a niche product?)
Quicktime 329 (Hard to think of a more niche product, why is this so high? Flash's record is far better, especially considering it had 95% market penetration, and it does more than just play video...)

The last few years have been pretty terrible for all software really.  Numbers are up drastically all across the board pretty much (I wonder if some of that is due to HTML5).  Main point here, these other guys aren't so perfect either.  

Making statements like "it's bad" or "deserves to die" is like beating your old work horse to death after 20 years of helping you put food on the table.  I don't really understand the strong hatred.  The alternatives simply weren't up to the task, and are still quite lacking in some ways.  I'm not in denial that the only path now is to retire Flash, especially from the public Internet, and I've already moved on to other things.  

But considering broader context of private/intranet usages (places where security is already mitigated due to limiting or blocking Internet access entirely), it's not as urgent an issue.  A lot of productivity software needs to be re-written, particularly in certain industries like banking/financial (believe it or not), which takes significant time and money.  Some indicators I've seen are that often the replacement software isn't as good, costs more to develop, takes longer, is expensive to maintain, and so on.  Development workflow for a former Flash dev on mobile or web is a painful experience, having experienced a much better platform to develop for before.  The whole situation sucks all around.  

The security issues aren't actually what I was referring to when I brought up anti-Flash propaganda though, it's my biggest issue with it too.  Usually when the critics attacked it years ago, they'd have the same 10 things in a list they'd always hit it for, most of which were easily debunked or debatable, so seeing those things endlessly repeated over years wears on you.  Security was probably the hardest to disagree with, but again, considering only that is like tossing out Windows purely for security reasons.  I'm here on Mint and I'm not even suggesting that...

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@Khatharr Was Adobe blame shifting?  Maybe...  I doubt the info is around anymore due to time passage, but Adobe had some technical reasons for that claim.  Something about restrictive APIs forcing awkward implementations and not having them upgraded to provide needed features, API flaws, or whatever.  I recall reading that Flash can only function as well as the environment it's provided, or something of that nature.  

 

But yeah, maybe you're correct, maybe that was just Adobe taking their turn at poking their finger at the other guy, so you probably have a valid enough point.  

I don't really have a dog in a "fight"... the fight is over.  The only thing that bothers me about it is that a lot of people and companies got away with telling half truths to kill what was a perfectly good competing technology back when Jobs put out that "open letter" or whatever it was.  People have become a little too trusting in everything these technology company "authorities" say or claim, they have their own interests and profit margins to look after.  It's kind of a problem in recent years, with developers too--everyone just loves to bash the other guy's tech, and it gets old to me.

Edited by Tebriel

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All Jobs did was pull the trigger. Nobody trusted him any father than they could throw him, but he had the final say on a truly massive segment of the market, so if he says he's had enough then it would be suicidal to ignore him.

The network has always prospered through open standards and cooperation. When the web reached the point that it could no longer move in the direction it wanted because it's retarded cousin was busy picking it's nose in the corner the obvious move was to simply advance the standard past that point.

Flash is a relic from an era when implementing core functionality through plugins made sense. It's always been a pain in the ass for users, right alongside nonsense like embedded Java applets. It fills the vital niche of "thing that constantly breaks".

It's not sensible to compare Flash to browsers or operating systems in terms of number of vulnerabilities either. The scope of responsibility, overall complexity, and purpose are radically different. Flash should be beating the pants off everyone in that list. The only direct competitor you listed was at 1/3 the incident rate. As Flash has dominated it's segment for so long it should be winning that fight as well.

Keep in mind also that the numbers there are browsers running HTML5, so their counts include the functionality that replaces Flash as well as their other duties.

In terms of economics, Flash took advantage of a natural monopoly (http://www.economicshelp.org/blog/glossary/natural-monopoly/), and when it's deadweight drag (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deadweight_loss) became too obnoxious (more costly than standardization) it was replaced by a utility. If you want to complain about tech giants with cornered markets then it doesn't make sense to balk at that process.

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We used to do social games in Flash (still supporting a few current ones) and let me tell you that it is a good thing it is quickly going away.  It has so many issues and security problems.  Adobe seems to have never cared to fix the core issues with the platform but still kept on pushing updates with new features that I don't think many people cared about.  We get so many client problems that we can never really repo as it just seems to be a combination of Flash and the users computer.  Not that HTML5 is a great replacement at this point but it is getting better.

 

AIR on the other hand isn't a bad platform.  Combined with Starling you can get some pretty decent performance.  With Android you can get rid of the "air." prefix Adobe tries to slap on your package name so players don't even know they are playing a Flash game.  But as usual Adobe always lags behind on platform support.  New versions of iOS and Xcode are always a problem.  Not until almost a year after iOS 10 beta SDK has been out has AIR been able to target iOS 10 as the base SDK.  It worked before but there were some workarounds and probably resigning your app to get it to submit.  AIR does have legitimate desktop support as well.  So it is very possible to have the same game run on web, mobile, and desktop with no code changes.  Not a lot of frameworks can say that.

 

If you are just starting out and don't really know what you want to do yet and ActionScript seems interesting to you then go ahead and start making games with it.  Flash and AIR are still going to be around for quite a long time in the indie scene.  But if you want to make a job out of this there are better tools to start with that are actually going to be used in the industry for years to come.

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