Thursday, July 19, 2012

Hosting Flash on a Blog - The Piggyback Method - July 2012


As I covered in a previous post, there are a number of ways to host a flash game on a blog or website. Here I will go into detail on the method I used earlier to embed a flash game in Blogspot / Google Blogger.

The "Piggyback" (Outsource) method:
This method supports any site that supports HTML input, including free sites such as Google Blogger (blogspot) and Tumblr. It has been successfully tested with Newgrounds.com. Other sites may prove more difficult.
Remember: it is inadvisable to use the services of any site that you do not know and trust.

1) Create an account on your desired host. This always requires an email address and may require you to enter more information. Use discretion.

2) Upload to the site. Newgrounds.com requires a .JPG or .GIF icon for all flash submissions.
NOTE: Both Newgrounds.com and Kongregate.com have a screening process for new games to confirm that the game works and that the maturity rating is appropriate (i.e. you cannot provide an "everyone" rating for a game with excessive violence). This screening process may take varying amounts of time, from a few minutes to overnight.

3) Once your game is online, visit the page where it is hosted.

4) View the HTML source of that page. (Right click the page and select "View Source" in most browsers)

5) Locate the URL address for the .swf file that represents your game. On Newgrounds.com, it will have a similar filename as your game.
Example: http://uploads.ungrounded.net/598000/598935_20120711_test_029_fish_gam.swf
(From uploading an swf named 20120711_test_029_fish_game_v3.swf)

6) Inject the URL into an HTML embed code
Example:
<embed src="http://uploads.ungrounded.net/598000/598935_20120711_test_029_fish_gam.swf" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="800" height="450"></embed>

7) Paste the embed code into your own site or blog.

Modern ways to host flash games - 2012


There is more than one way to host a flash game on the internet.

Hosting can be prohibitively difficult if you are just beginning to make games. The "traditional" method is to create your own website by purchasing a domain name and a subscription to a hosting provider. The site itself must be designed and built-- once this is done, the game can be brought online.

Alternately, there are "aggregate" game hosting websites such as Newgrounds.com and Kongregate.com which will host your game for free and virtually guarantee its exposure to their massive online audiences. More often than not, players will attempt to leave constructive feedback. It should be noted however, that these users are not necessarily representative of the people you want to play your game.

Despite the apparent benefits of hosting your games via these aggregate sites, you may still choose to host from your own site or blog. One clear advantage is that you can control the way your game is presented to the player. In the past, Newgrounds.com had banner ads for adult websites. On Kongregate.com, all games are presented next to a public chatroom. Both sites use heavy formatting that is slow to load and consumes computer resources that could otherwise be made available for your game.

The fastest and most affordable way to host your game is to outsource or "piggyback" off of external hosts such as Newgrounds.com. This method still requires you to create an account and publicly post your game to that site, but you will be able to embed (link) the externally-hosted game on your own site or blog. Some aggregate sites may even provide the HTML embed code for you.


Game hosting methods:


The "Traditional" Method (pay for your own site):

 Pros:
      Complete control over presentation
 Cons:
      Expensive
      More difficult than other methods

Upload to an aggregate flash site:
 Pros:
      Free
      Exposure
      User feedback
 Cons:
      No control over presentation
      Site may slow down computers

The "Piggyback" Method (outsource to a flash site):
 Pros:
     Free
     Outside exposure
     User feedback
     Near-complete control over presentation
 Cons:
     Game will also be hosted on the other site

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

First Game

"1ce Upon a F1sh Kingdome"

You are Salmon, Prince of Fish




Eat small fish to become bigger. Be eaten by big fish to become smaller. Moving makes you smaller. Bigger fish deeper down. WASD or Mouse to move. (W: up, S: down, A: left, D: right).
Scorekeeping is weird/unexplained on purpose.
Graphics are that way on purpose.



MORE INFO:
Smaller fish try harder to escape you. Similarly, larger fish try harder to catch you (and also bite harder).