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Wooga drops HTML5 development, but believes it st

  • Wooga drops HTML5 development, but believes it still has a future

    June 21, 2012

    German social game maker Wooga has spoken candidly about its experience with HTML5 development, stating that it is moving away from the platform to focus on native iOS apps since "the technology is not there yet."

    Wooga was approached by Facebook in 2011 and asked to develop a HTML5 game for the launch of the social network's HTML5 mobile platform. The studio launched Magic Land Island later that year, but a combination of issues with HTML5 meant the game never reached its full potential audience.

    "Whilst the benefits of an open platform future are clear for games developers, it became clear halfway through Magic Land Island's development cycle that the technology wasn?t yet ready for mainstream exposure," the company explained on its official blog.

    As a result of the limitations of HTML5 development, including issues with online and offline play, animations and sounds for mobile devices, Wooga has decided to move away from HTML5 development and concentrate on native iOS development.

    However, before bowing out of the HTML5 space, the studio has released an open source version of Magic Land Island called Pocket Island, and is asking that other developer attempt to improve on it, as a means of pushing HTML5 forward.

    There is still a future in HTML5 games, says the studio, and it's time will come - however until that point, Wooga will be focusing its efforts elsewhere.

    "The mobile app market is a billion dollar business that HTML5 could significantly disrupt," adds Philipp Moeser, Wooga's co-founder and CTO. "It has the potential to be a complete game changer, but the technology is not there yet."

    source gamasutra.com/view/news/172804/Wooga_drops_HTML5_development_but_believes_it_still_has_a_future.php

  • Kinda makes sense. But who knows what all goes on behind close doors. I'm sure they have their reasons.

    Thanks for posting this.

  • two key points

    • if you look at the open sourced code, it's not the best written html5 mobile game out there.
    • wooga is a big business, and critical user mass counts for them. the same doesn't apply to indie developers like us. we can still carve a comfortable living from a much smaller user base
  • ben0 made a good point - a large business won't look favourably on not being able to support IE 6, 7 and 8, whereas for us that's not such a big deal (according to StatCounter, those users are only about 15% of the web now). Large companies have much different priorities.

    I agree that it's early days for HTML5, and mobile HTML5 is especially problematic - but that's why we're working with directCanvas and CocoonJS, which should smooth out all the bumps on mobile and bring better performance too. Maybe Wooga should have tried those out too, but they say they started in 2011 so that might have been before either was available.

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  • From my experiences in the design industry so far, I have come to notice similar reactions from companies as Ashley mentioned. They are somewhat focused on obtaining 100% saturation of their product, even to the 15% of people who will never buy it anyway...

    I think HTML5 is certainly the future for the internet, and specific facets of gaming as we know it now. While it's a shame that it's a little "ahead of it's time" I believe focus has already shifted towards the standardization of the technology, through all major browser authorities.

    I look forward to, and welcome HTML5 as it will take the entire interactive experience to the next level. Not only for gaming, but general web browsing and interaction.

    If only the "powers that be" were willing to wait.

    ~Sol

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