Metaplace and Flash games

The BBC has an interview with Raph Koster this morning about Flash games. Koster is an influential figure in the games industry and is well known for his involvement, for example, with Star Wars Galaxies and his book “A Theory of Fun” – a theory which I subscribe to! In the article Koster discusses the movement towards the network for games – online play and downloadable content and distribution. He discusses Adobe’s role in this and comments on the increasing quality of Flash based games:

“Right now Flash is rendering in high-end 2D, equivalent to games like Diablo (from 1997),” says Mr Koster.

“There are a few 3D engines out there – Papervision, Alternativa and Away3D – and they are developing rapidly.

“They are surprisingly good and are all built on top of Flash.”

The backdrop to these comments is Koster’s new baby, Metaplace, which is a web based game system built on Flash. I have been on the beta for this software for a while and I continue to be impressed. They have now added height maps which will be very useful for a few ideas I have been developing.