Microsoft and Atari team up to relive your childhood with HTML5

Microsoft has been working on many different projects to showcase the power of HTML5 over the last few months but this time, they have gone all out. Microsoft has teamed up with Atari to bring you some of the classic games of the past to the present with the power of HTML5.

Microsoft and Atari are bringing many of the games from your childhood right into your browser. If you watch the video above, you can get a sense of how these games will work with touch and keyboard input. Some of the games that are included with this project are Asteroids, Centipede, Lunar Lander, Missile Command, and Yars and you can check out the games right now in your browser, provided it is a modern browser, with this link here

While the games are certainly the high point, tons of folks made this a project a reality and put a lot of effort into making this project a reality. Porting these classics to HTML5 was not a simple task and required a lot of legwork on the backend. The good news here is that Microsoft is going to share the knowledge (and code) that they used to create these games on GitHub which will allow other devlopers to leverage Microsoft's newfound knowledge.

The games will work on any device and the Atari Arcade is able to determine your platform and adjust between 3D and 2D elements and 60FPS and 30 FPS, to keep the content running smoothly on your machine; all of the visual elements in these games are using EaseJS.

Grant Skinner has also created Zoe, a tool that gathers the image vectors assets and exports them into spritesheets that developers can use with EaselJS game physics in one-click; you can check out Grant Skinner's work over at over gskinner.com.

There really is a lot to love about this project beyond the hours that you undoubtedly sink into these classic games. Make sure to check out the Microsoft blog to learn more, especially if you are on the developer side of the fence so you can get your hands on the entire CreateJS suite. 

Oh, and one more thing. We should warn you before heading over to play these games, it's quite likely you will dump a few hours into them, they are that good, so plan accordingly. 

Source: Microsoft

Play: Atari Arcade

 

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Sorry but that was pretty terrible. I was expecting to play the old Atari games, not some mediocre flash style remakes. Thankfully there's always the Stella emulator though.

Catweazʖe said,
Sorry but that was pretty terrible. I was expecting to play the old Atari games, not some mediocre flash style remakes. Thankfully there's always the Stella emulator though.

the games are 100% html5. the only flash is audio. nothing else.

the audio is provided by flash as right now html5 doesnt have a standard audio implementation that is supported by all browsers

Well, the videos here are unlisted, in the video descriptions it links to arcade.atari.com but the only valid link is atari.com/arcade, the Atari Arcade looks different in the video than on the latter link, & that link has them using Flash instead of HTML5. Gentlemen, I don't think this has officially launched yet..

EDIT: But I do think arcade.atari.com will be the successor to atari.com/arcade...

My understanding was that all of these Microsoft HTML 5 games rely on Flash for the sound layer, because there's still no good implementation to sync sound effects with canvas.

threetonesun said,
My understanding was that all of these Microsoft HTML 5 games rely on Flash for the sound layer, because there's still no good implementation to sync sound effects with canvas.

which browser that you are using to browse the site? maybe the dev set html5 only to IE not other browser

Speaking of retro, you must be the only blogger still using the phrase "make the jump". We know how to use the internet, you need not use this phrase with every article you write (or ever).

Memnochxx said,
Speaking of retro, you must be the only blogger still using the phrase "make the jump". We know how to use the internet, you need not use this phrase with every article you write (or ever).

Hop on over?

and here I was wondering how I was going to be productive during my hour long web cast today, problem solved.

CheloXL said,
Those games, in the address provided above, are in flash right now...

Just tried them in modern IE and its a no show! Surely this should have been checked before posting?

duddit2 said,

Just tried them in modern IE and its a no show! Surely this should have been checked before posting?

You have to be using the latest version of IE10 to get these working. They work for me fine

VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

EdenHerman said,
VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

No, 95% of the hate to windows 8 come from the people wo is actually long experienced in windows, so much that they like choice, and you are what? like 19 and you stopped to call yourself teenager? if not your answer pretty much reveals your mental age.

EdenHerman said,
VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

Very sad you take a gift horse and look it straight in the mouth.

EdenHerman said,
VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

WTF does this have to do with Windows 8?

EdenHerman said,
VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

Ok first that is not dubstep, and second how does liking a style of music make someone an idiot? It doesn't, and you made yourself sound idiotic for even saying that.

EdenHerman said,
VERY sad that they have to add dubstep music and make the video made for idiot teenagers.
so stupid, and 95% of the hate to windows 8 are done by the same idiot teenagers that think they know it all.
**** sake

i agreed with you on the first line then you went off the deep end.
Reasons behind 95% of Hate towards Windows 8 is made up in
the heads of Windows 8 fanboys.. 67% of my opinion is based on 57% of
global opinion that has 45% of the demographic that holds the majority opinion !

These exact comments are posted here CONSTANTLY and contain no method
of verifying the authenticity of so called facts being paraded around.
I can easily make up random crap and proclaim it as fact but.. Why bother ?
Agenda ? Butt-hurt Fanboy ?

Your comment is a shining perfect example of how windows 8 is playing out..
Windows 8 haters ARE vocal but the fanboys and cheerleaders are provoking
things by starting discussions like these even when they are not related to the topic at hand and the majority of commentary i see is made up stats for reasons why people have treated Win 8 unfairly and are wrong and dumb for not liking it.
And i hate to break it to you all but even though we give you guys reasons
why we don't like it we don't have to..

I tell ya i will love it when Microsoft decides to pull the Metro Tile interface
and replace it with something fanboys do NOT like.. i will be waiting there with a grin on my face reminding people about their options being removed and one new single choice being jammed down their throat.
And don't think it can't happen MS is the flip flop masters.
Who knows maybe this will end up being another platform that MS gets bored of and discontinues like they have with plenty of other things lol

I would prefer these to be WinRT apps instead of websites in Internet Explorer.

Heh, I'd prefer everything to be a WinRT app instead of a website. At least then there would be full consistency in terms of design style (well, apart from on games, I suppose).

Calum said,
I would prefer these to be WinRT apps instead of websites in Internet Explorer.

Heh, I'd prefer everything to be a WinRT app instead of a website. At least then there would be full consistency in terms of design style (well, apart from on games, I suppose).

I dare say that this is a little hint at the games Microsoft would be bringing to the Store at general availability! If they use HTML5 and JS there is literally no extra work for it to run natively on Win8 and RT

Calum said,
I would prefer these to be WinRT apps instead of websites in Internet Explorer.

Heh, I'd prefer everything to be a WinRT app instead of a website. At least then there would be full consistency in terms of design style (well, apart from on games, I suppose).


& then how are, say, OSX or Linux users supposed to play them?

MASTER260 said,

& then how are, say, OSX or Linux users supposed to play them?

If they're HTML 5 apps, I would think there wouldn't be much work required in them maintaining a website (for those users) and WinRT apps/one WinRT app

ingramator said,

I dare say that this is a little hint at the games Microsoft would be bringing to the Store at general availability! If they use HTML5 and JS there is literally no extra work for it to run natively on Win8 and RT


That's certainly what I'm hoping for. I'd love to see that

Calum said,
I would prefer these to be WinRT apps instead of websites in Internet Explorer.

Heh, I'd prefer everything to be a WinRT app instead of a website. At least then there would be full consistency in terms of design style (well, apart from on games, I suppose).

Could you explain why? In all seriousness, I'd like to understand the perception of difference between a WinRT app written in HTML5/JavaScript and an HTML5/JS app hosted in Metro IE. Thanks in advance.

Calum said,
I would prefer these to be WinRT apps instead of websites in Internet Explorer.

Heh, I'd prefer everything to be a WinRT app instead of a website. At least then there would be full consistency in terms of design style (well, apart from on games, I suppose).

With IE10, they have established UI consistency features, with HTML5 touch standards as well.

As for these being WinRT, versus IE10, why, what is the real difference?

They could port these to WinRT if they want, as WinRT runs HTML5 just fine.

However, they would NOT BE ANY different, as IE10 compiles and renders HTML5 sites the same EXACT way WinRT compiles and renders HTML5 WinRT based Apps.

It is the same HTML compiling engine that runs IE10 and WinRT.

Moving BACK to RIA (Web Apps) instead of platform Apps is the right way to progress.

tobint said,

Could you explain why? In all seriousness, I'd like to understand the perception of difference between a WinRT app written in HTML5/JavaScript and an HTML5/JS app hosted in Metro IE. Thanks in advance.


thenetavenger said,

With IE10, they have established UI consistency features, with HTML5 touch standards as well.

As for these being WinRT, versus IE10, why, what is the real difference?

They could port these to WinRT if they want, as WinRT runs HTML5 just fine.

However, they would NOT BE ANY different, as IE10 compiles and renders HTML5 sites the same EXACT way WinRT compiles and renders HTML5 WinRT based Apps.

It is the same HTML compiling engine that runs IE10 and WinRT.

Moving BACK to RIA (Web Apps) instead of platform Apps is the right way to progress.


I'm aware of how it all works and that Internet Explorer can run and display these apps just as well as if they were WinRT apps, but that has nothing to do with my preference of WinRT apps.

I don't have much time tonight and this is quite hard to explain, so I might be able to go into further detail tomorrow, but this is the explanation I can think of right now:

I've always preferred using apps over websites, especially on my smartphone or an experience like the new Windows 8 experience. An app seems to provide me with a better user experience, not least because all WinRT apps tend to follow the same design style and the vast majority of websites are not currently designed using the "Metro" philosophy.

One of the main reasons I prefer apps is because of how they are contained and started up compared to websites. You click on an app's tile to start it up and it perhaps grabs information from a server, populating the controls and waiting for some kind of input. A website, on the other hand, is navigated to via its address; even if you click on a pinned tile or a favourite, it's still accessed in the web browser using its address. Not only that, but one can access different pages by merely changing that address, and they can access the source of the page among other things (which doesn't pose a security problem, but it gives the user more control over apps than I'd like). WinRT apps are fully contained in the sense that you click on the app to open it, and the only way to get to other pages is via links or controls in the app. There is never any need to access an app via a string like a web address, and there is no ugly control in the app's UI that contains such a messy string.

All WinRT apps tend to use similar or the same UI elements. For example, you right-click on a WinRT app and the app bar appears, ready for one to select a command. I don't know of any website that has implemented an app bar that works like that, yet all WinRT apps I use have.

Not only do we get that benefit with WinRT apps, but WinRT apps can use the new APIs, such as the Charms contracts and Notifications API, among many others. WinRT apps can even hook into the volume/playback control, as discussed in a Windows Team Blog post the other day.

One problem with websites over WinRT apps, that I noticed today, is that if I'm playing a video on a website, in the "Metro" Internet Explorer, I cannot go to the Start screen or open another app fullscreen without that video stopping; it continues to play when I enter Internet Explorer again, but it stops when I go to the Start screen to look at another app. At least, that's what happens when I play a video on YouTube, so I suspect it happens with other sites (if not all). I realise I could dock Internet Explorer to the side, but that is still a limitation over a WinRT app that can continue playing content in the background.

Another point of note is that I can't have two websites side-by-side in the new Windows 8 experience, but I can place two WinRT apps side-by-side.

Basically, what I'm saying is that WinRT apps can provide much more functionality over websites, in terms of how they interact with each other and Windows. My original comment wasn't just about games: It was about all websites; I'd like to see all websites as WinRT apps, for some of the reasons stated here, as well as other reasons, which I may detail when I have more time. As I mention, the general user experience seems to feel better to me when I'm using an app instead of a website

In regard to just game apps in Windows 8, there are even some advantages to those being WinRT apps instead of websites: Games can be part of Xbox LIVE, if they're WinRT apps, and there are probably other benefits and certain APIs they can take advantage of (I'm not too sure, as I haven't looked into the gaming aspect much because I don't tend to play many games anymore).

WaqasTariq said,
Atari (the company) is still alive? I wonder what there income source is now...

The Atari name has been bought by Infogrames. What is called Atari today is pretty much Infogrames with a new name.