I’ve been carrying out some research in to the “findability” for want of a better phrase of HTML5 games. I’m intrigued by the kind of search terms that your average casual gamer (who cares not for the technology) might use.
Somewhat unsurprisingly such is the nature and penetration of Flash it’s not at all uncommon to see people actually typing the word Flash in to the search box. e.g. “Flash games”, “Free Flash games”
Flash it seems is largely synonymous with browser based gaming.
No surprise really. Flash games have of course been around for years, and it’s no longer surprising to see that while they are quite advanced in many respects there are some “future” limitations to the platform.
HTML5 addresses the most immediate drawback of Flash – the requirement for the plug-in in the first place. However, right now the under-performance of HTML5 hinders it greatly. As does its toolset. But this will all change and change very quickly.
If you snigger at HTML5 just now you really don’t have very long to move along with the times before that comes right back to smack you on the backside.
Most of my searches returned popular and high profile sites such as Kongregate and Partypoker.
Other reasonable web sites MiniClip and Spil Games whilst using Flash extensively now also offer more open web solutions. Could I find them with Google using some fairly basic HTML5 based search terms ? Could I hell.
To be fair to Spil they have openly adopted HTML5 and ran a successful competition to support the cause earlier in the year.
Professional, clean web sites (certainly popular amongst online gamers) they may all be but at some point such sites will be forced to adapt to be accessible to everyone, everywhere.
I am of course referring to mobile devices. Smartphones. Often the bane of my life but something that I would ignore at my peril.Mobiles and Flash are generally not friends. Well, certainly not on iOS. And iOS of course has a vast share of the market.
Something I am all too aware of.
But how long before people are searching for games by prefixing their search queries with HTML5 ?
Or simply dropping such prefixes altogether ?
“Free games”, “Free online games”, “Arcade games”, “Casual games”, “Online card games”, “Social games”.
Most web users are savvy enough to understand that simply typing the word “games” in to a search box will return all manner of gaming news sites. When you’re specifically looking for a quick gaming thrill you need to add words to your search phrase.
I would love to see HTML5 become synonymous with gaming. Certainly to the extent that Flash has. I would also love to see the need for supplying the technology in the search box replaced by a more simple and honest “show me some fantastic games” type approach.
Anyway, just an aside from my usual day to day game making activities.