Instant Games on Facebook Messenger: the HTML5 game wave has arrived

This article was first published at WiMi5.

On November 29, Facebook announced its new service: Instant Games on Messenger.  This news, which had been rumored about since the beginning of the month, marks the launch of the massive use of HTML5 games inside instant messaging apps, a trend that started a few years ago with Kik, and which was recently furthered by Telegram.  This service is available to more than a billion Facebook Messenger users on desktop and mobile.

The service has started in more than 30 countries with 17 classic games with marked casual, social feel.  After all, they’re on an eminently social platform, which allows rankings to be created and friends to compete among themselves, playing without leaving the messaging app.

New titles are going to be added to increase the number of offerings available to the user.  From the Facebook developers’ site, this service has already been announced, and developers may sign up to create games for this new service, Instant Games.

The big advantages of this new service, which could very well end up being a major breakthrough for HTML5 games, are the very same advantages HTML5 offers as a gaming platform we’ve always commented on here at WiMi5.  Basically, they’re the following:

  • Instant access to the game, with no need to download or install anything (they’re called Instant Games for a reason)
  • A multiplatform experience thanks to HTML5, which allows a game to be developed once and enjoyed in different environments
  • Easy to share games and rankings, and to discover and play games, a feature of Web content

This new Instant Games service is also clear and definitive support for HTML5 from Facebook.  After stumbling with this technology in 2012, Facebook is back on the offensive, now that the standard has been approved and key technologies like WebGL have been implemented.

There is no doubt that HTML5 games have a bright future.  Big Viking Games CEO Albert Lai is already talking about it becoming a $100 billion market.  So far, his company has raised $21.75 million, of which $10 million will go to publishing third-party games.

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