Mozilla and Epic Preview Advanced Web Gaming

by Ostatic Staff - Mar. 13, 2014

Mozilla and Epic Games have been working together for some time now, but it looks like they are set to take their partnership to the next level. Last year, the two companies demonstrated Unreal Engine 3, the basis for many games, running in the Firefox browser via the WebGL 3D graphics API and some offshoots of JavaScript.  Now, Epic and Mozilla have announced that they are porting Unreal Engine 4 to the web.

To demonstrate that the web is continuing to evolve as a powerful platform for gaming Epic Games and Mozilla are providing a sneak peek of Epic’s Soul and Swing Ninja demos, running in Firefox at near-native speeds. You can check out the video demo here. This video is the first glimpse of Unreal Engine 4 running on the Web without plugins.

“This technology has reached a point where games users can jump into via a Web link are now almost indistinguishable from ones they might have had to wait to download and install,” said Brendan Eich, CTO and SVP of Engineering at Mozilla, in a statement. Eich has long contended that the web can be a powerful gaming platform. “Using Emscripten to cross-compile C and C++ into asm.js, developers can run their games at near-native speeds, so they can approach the web as they would any other platform.”

“We were blown away by what this Mozilla-pioneered technology achieved with Unreal Engine 3 on the web, so we had no hesitation in working with Mozilla to port Unreal Engine 4,” said Tim Sweeney, Founder and CEO, Epic Games. “We believe the web has a crucial part to play in the future of game development and deployment, and Mozilla has proven it is the catalyst to make this happen.”

According to Mozilla's announcement:

"Unreal Engine 4 is built to power the next generation of games, and is designed to scale from PC and console to mobile and the Web. We’ll be excited to see what new breakthroughs are in store once developers have access to the underlying Unreal Engine 4 code that targets asm.js and the Web."

As we've recently covered, the gaming arena is quickly embracing open source technologies and moving toward open standards.  If you want to dive into some of the available choices, Muktware is out with a good roundup of your best choices. This year, we'll get to see what kinds of game choices Mozilla and Epic Games can deliver with their ongoing partnership.