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Thread: Mozilla Brings Unreal Engine 3 To Firefox

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  1. #1
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    Default Mozilla Brings Unreal Engine 3 To Firefox

    Phoronix: Mozilla Brings Unreal Engine 3 To Firefox

    For showing off the power of its JavaScript engine with Firefox, Mozilla collaborated with Epic Games to bring a JavaScript-based version of Unreal Engine 3 for the web...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTMzNzc

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    Makes me wonder if any/all existing UE3 games will work on linux now, and there's a LOT out there. I own at least 4 games that use it, with only 2 of them being a FPS.

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    Arguably it's in a small canvas in Firefox. It's good to see people moving toward Javascript use as there's no reason for JS not to be super fast language.

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    Quote Originally Posted by e8hffff View Post
    Arguably it's in a small canvas in Firefox. It's good to see people moving toward Javascript use as there's no reason for JS not to be super fast language.
    lol, wut? Javascript has... dynamic typing, dynamic prototype based object structures, variable tagging (v8) with 31bit ints, etc... there may be some obscure way to get JS to work at slightly okay performance, or extend the syntax in some human-unreadable way to allow strict compilation rules (eg asm.js), but as it is Javascript is a horribly slow, bug-prone language only suitable for it's original purpose: website scripting.

    NaCL and Dart are much better options than trying to fit a square shape (javascript) into a round whole (efficiency).

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    Quote Originally Posted by F i L View Post
    lol, wut? Javascript has... dynamic typing, dynamic prototype based object structures, variable tagging (v8) with 31bit ints, etc... there may be some obscure way to get JS to work at slightly okay performance, or extend the syntax in some human-unreadable way to allow strict compilation rules (eg asm.js), but as it is Javascript is a horribly slow, bug-prone language only suitable for it's original purpose: website scripting.

    NaCL and Dart are much better options than trying to fit a square shape (javascript) into a round whole (efficiency).
    This is wrong.

    Anyway, the main problem with running real games inside a browser is the texture data. AAA games have > 10GB of texture data that's typically installed to the hard drive, and you aren't going to want to try and stream that on demand. Meaning you need to install it all ahead of time. And once you've done that, is there really much of a point to try to run it in the browser instead of locally?

    Apparently Mozilla is working on some kind of new system that would check the bandwidth available and dynamically download textures of different sizes and quality based on how much you can stream from the server, but I still doubt you'd want to do that for a major AAA game. It seems like it'd be more useful for something that in the past would used Flash.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty3268 View Post
    This is wrong.

    Anyway, the main problem with running real games inside a browser is the texture data. AAA games have > 10GB of texture data that's typically installed to the hard drive, and you aren't going to want to try and stream that on demand. Meaning you need to install it all ahead of time. And once you've done that, is there really much of a point to try to run it in the browser instead of locally?

    Apparently Mozilla is working on some kind of new system that would check the bandwidth available and dynamically download textures of different sizes and quality based on how much you can stream from the server, but I still doubt you'd want to do that for a major AAA game. It seems like it'd be more useful for something that in the past would used Flash.
    I think in the end it becomes more a matter of compatibility than anything. It seems that more and more programs are becoming web based, because Windows no longer has a greater market share than all other platforms combined. Windows, Windows RT, Mac, Android, and iOS are all pretty much binary incompatible with each other, and linux is just starting to crack out of it's shell of being apart of the rest of the flock (pun intended). When you consider games, Xbox and PS are also in the loop. So that can become potentially 8 modern binary-incompatible platforms to support, and that's a turnoff for any developer. By making something browser based, it no longer becomes the developers' responsibility to make it cross-compatible, as long as the product is known to work on that particular browser.

    I'm sure one of the reasons Mozilla is working on this is so they have something extra appealing to offer for their Firefox OS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty3268 View Post
    This is wrong.
    Which part and how so?

    I write in Javascript every day, it's slow and I know it. Moreover, there's no dynamic language out there that compares to the performance of native static-typed ones (C & C++). Most AAA game companies wont even consider using anything but C++ cause no other language (currently) offers tight control over SIMD instructions. There's no way Javascript is going to be a target for anything more than simple Indie games unless something drastic happens to the language itself, or (like with asm.js) human-unreadable subset idioms are introduced that allow JS compilers to have more structural guarantees. Even then, unless you add very specialized SIMD commands, C++ will win by a milestones.

    Moreover, even if the performance wasn't a concern, Javascript sux. Prototype inheritance is horrible for big projects compared to proper OOP. You can't even have private variables without killing performance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by F i L View Post
    lol, wut? Javascript has... dynamic typing, dynamic prototype based object structures, variable tagging (v8) with 31bit ints, etc... there may be some obscure way to get JS to work at slightly okay performance, or extend the syntax in some human-unreadable way to allow strict compilation rules (eg asm.js), but as it is Javascript is a horribly slow, bug-prone language only suitable for it's original purpose: website scripting.

    NaCL and Dart are much better options than trying to fit a square shape (javascript) into a round whole (efficiency).
    JS is already really fast as far as interpreted languages go, but what moz is pushing here are a subset of js features which gets rid of GC, dynamic typing and boxed values.
    That is how they get the speeds that are within a factor of 2 of C. The guys behind it claim they can do even better.
    What I'd love to see is a way to turn js into asm.js (when appropriate, obviously), but the ability to write for the web with your language of choice (say, ruby) and expect to get really good performance without plugins is frickin amazing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by e8hffff View Post
    Arguably it's in a small canvas in Firefox. It's good to see people moving toward Javascript use as there's no reason for JS not to be super fast language.
    With proper optimizations JS can indeed be a fast and relatively versatile language well suited for running applications within a web browser as if they were locally installed. Fast CPUs/GPUs should be able to handle JS quite well so games written in JS could definitely be quite playable in the browser.

    Browser based games are a great thing as they could make use of game servers much in the same fashion as the games that are installed right on a desktop/laptop

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    Quote Originally Posted by schmidtbag View Post
    Makes me wonder if any/all existing UE3 games will work on linux now, and there's a LOT out there. I own at least 4 games that use it, with only 2 of them being a FPS.
    well dungeon defenders already works on linux.

    also there was news of a good FPS that is coming too.

    but this browser technology looks good, specially since the linux version of flash didnt support it. So take that Adobe, less and less flash every day !

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