Three HTML5 tools that are useful for game development

HTML5 is quite possibly the most user-friendly programming language currently available on the market. Not only does it help programmers create slick-looking games with ease, but it also allows titles to be ported on different platforms effortlessly.

Traditionally, HTML’s roles are simply to define the layout and text on web pages. However, its use has evolved to programming. The all-new HTML5 is now being used to include definitions for several programming elements including graphics, interactivity, and multimedia. This evolution seemed to have affected the programming style of gaming providers. Runescape 3, one of the most popular MMORPG games played by millions all over the world, is written in HTML5. Coversely, the longest-running casino gaming site, InterCasino, has created games written in HTML5 in order to provide better animation and graphics to their customers. The change is quite evident just by looking at some of the site’s browser-based slot games.

Without further ado, here are three tools for HTML5 that can be used for developing games.

Game Maker

Game Maker
is a powerful program that recently added an HTML5 support. One of its best features is that it allows developers to create games without writing a lot of code. This is all made possible with Game Maker’s GML, the primary scripting language of the tool designed to further enhance and control the game design through more conventional programming.

Here’s a sample video on how developers can make an easy slot machine game with good animation using Game Maker.

Spaceport NEO

Spaceport NEO isn’t a standalone game development system but it’s a pretty useful tool to port HTML5 games to the android and iOS platforms. It’s pretty useful for developers who jumped into the bandwagon of creating games for the huge market of smartgadget users. Apart from its ability to port games for smartgadget users, it can also convert Flash games to HTML5.

Construct 2

Construct 2
is a simple tool that can create powerful, groundbreaking HTML5-based 2D games. Like Game Maker, it doesn’t require developers to actually code games. The user interface is very easy to learn, and it allows coders to preview their game’s development instantly — a feature that isn’t available for a lot of game development tools.

Are you a programmer who has a favorite set of game development programs for HTML5? What tools do you use?

NBCNews.com Changes Again

It looks like I wasn’t the only one who thought that nbcnews.com’s last redesign was a disaster. Less than six months after radically redesigning their site, nbcnews.com has changed yet again, but this time for the better.

Gone is the layout designed only for mobile devices, with huge images everywhere and stories seemingly randomly scattered about. The latest design is closer to their old layout where stories are categorized, with a better use of space. They also left out a feature of the design prior to the last layout where a block of code above the header was hidden, forcing you to scroll up to see it after the page loaded. Anyone else using that pattern? I don’t think so.

So far, out of nbcnews.com’s last three layout changes, this is the best. We’ll see what they do next. Latest layout:

NBC_News_-_Breaking_News_&_Top_Stories_-_Latest_World,_US_&_Local_News_-_2014-09-11_09.38.17

Temporary Design Change

This is just a short note to let you know that due to recent server issues, we’ve had to temporarily change the look of CMF. We’ll be going back to the old look shortly, once some issues with our template are squared away.

Before/After Used in National Climate Change Website

The US government’s Global Change Research Program recently debuted a fancy new website with loads of HTML5 and CSS3 bells and whistles to discuss climate change. Among the visual eye candy is our own Before/After plugin in use to show the dramatic change in the Alaskan Muir glacier over a period of 60 years. Have a look at http://nca2014.globalchange.gov/report/regions/alaska#graphic-20971.

PHP Pagination Class – Version 3

It’s been a while since the popular PHP pagination class has received any of my attention, so a few months ago I set out to re-write the class to be more up to date. This version takes advantage of both code and security updates as well as updates to PHP and MySQL. I’m also planning on moving the code over to GitHub where it should be easier to manage.

Here is the new and improved PHP pagination class for your enjoyment:

Download

See the example files for how to use. I’ll create step-by-step instructions shortly.

Demo

Note that the demo uses MySQL’s free “world” database available at http://dev.mysql.com/doc/index-other.html

  • Example 1 (basic paginated database result set)
  • Example 2 (Form variables passed via pagination class)

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