After careful consideration of a number of options for cross platform game development, We at Divine Knight Gaming have decided to go with Flash. I mentioned this in my last article about game development for Linux, but I didn’t really delve much further into it.
So here I will be explaining exactly what went into this decision.
First off there is a cost issue. I reviewed a number of options when looking at cost. With iPhone and XNA development there were additional purchases required before I would have been able to get started with development. As a starting developer, we couldn’t really spare the expense needed to buy a Mac and an iPhone for development or an Xbox and a Creators Club license for XNA. But with Flash we already had a CS3 version and the PCs needed.
Yes we could have gone with free technologies for PC development and we plan too. But as a new development studio, we decided to go with Flash as it would bring the greatest amount of exposure. This leads into our next reason.
With Flash we have a potential audience of 99% of all online enabled PCs. (source) This makes it really easy for anyone who wants, to play our games without having to install anything they have not already installed.
Flash is also a cross platform tool. Flash is available for not only Windows and Macs, but also for Linux. We have made a commitment to only use technologies that will allow us to develop for all three of those operating systems.
Eventually, as we gain a regular user base we will be able to move into traditional PC development. When that happens we will be able to easily move our customers to these other technologies.
Finally, there is the familiarity of Flash. I am a web developer and am most familiar with tools for web development and distribution. Flash is a part of my everyday experience. I am familiar with technologies for PC development but not to the same level as I am with web technologies. As we release games for Flash, we will also become more familiar with other technologies for PC development so that when we do move to the PC, we will be able to bring quality games to our fans.
Those are the key reasons we chose to develop games with Flash. But we are not locked into it forever. We will provide games for both the browser and for play on the desktop. The key for now is getting our name and game development philosophies exposure to the greater fan base.