Adobe releasing APIs to support 3D acceleration

Adobe announced at Adobe Max 2010 that they are releasing APIs to support 3D accelerated flash games. The new set of APIs, code named Molehill, will allow developers to create games that support graphics acceleration on all Flash supported platforms.

Flash Project Manager Thibault Imbert said:

Technically, Molehill is a set of shadow-based 3D GPU-accelerated APIs which expose features like cube textures, Z-buffering, fragment and vertex shaders and all that cool stuff. Developers will be able to create high-end 3D rendering in the Flash runtime, Flash Player or AIR. We also provide as part of the same API a CPU foldback for when the hardware is incompatible, which is very exciting.

Currently, according to Thinq, Flash renders thousands of non Z-buffered triangles at around 30Hz but with the new set of APIs Flash will be able to render hundreds of thousands of Z-buffered triangles at full screen HD resolution with a refresh rate of 60Hz. To show off the new abilities of Flash Adobe showed a video of a game called Max racer.

A company by the name of Frima Studios announced today that Adobe selected them as a pre-release partner for the Molehill platform. Frima Studio CEO Steve Couture said:

This opens up endless possibilities to creating the next generation in-browser entertainment, where the visual quality is equivalent to console and mobile platforms like iPhone and Wii.

Frima also released a video of Molehill in action for their upcoming game Zombie Tycoon.

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