Noah J Nelson on Tuesday, Mar. 18th
Just days after announcing that the latest Unreal Engine was playable in Firefox without any plug-ins web browser maker Mozilla is at it again. This time they’ve teamed up with the makers of the incredibly popular Unity engine to create a plug-in free gaming experience.
Previously those who wanted to play a Unity based game in their browser would have to download a plug-in, which was a barrier for some. Not everyone is comfortable with plug-ins, and you often have to reboot the browser. In short: it is a pain in the you-know-where. With the freshly announced Unity 5 engine those days are gone.
Millions of Unity developers will have the opportunity to export their Unity content directly to the Web without the friction of plugins while maintaining smooth and silky gameplay. To demonstrate this technology in action, Unity and Mozilla are showcasing a preview of the popular game, Dead Trigger 2, running in Firefox at near-native speed. (Source: Mozilla)
Unreal Engine 4 is the state of the art in high-end gaming engines and Unity is the ubiquitous engine that powers countless indie and mobile games. With both of these engines running natively in browsers the value of dedicated gaming tools–whether they are consoles like the Xbox One and Playstation 4 or stores like Steam and the iOS App Store–are being drawn into question.
The aggregation value of consoles and dedicated marketplaces are still clear: finding a game in the wilds of the Internet without a portal of some kind is like finding a needle in a hay field. However the ability to distribute a game using modern middleware like UE4 or Unity 5 puts subtle pressure on platform holders to provide more value on the marketing and revenue side.