I have to admit that I'm not a fan of Epic Games anymore ever since they decided to make shiny great looking games that are not the best gameplay-wise.
I was a huge fan of the original Unreal Tournament and played it for years actively in a clan and in leagues. It was one of the best multiplayer shooters ever released. Imagine my disappointment when the next UT game turned everything upside down. It looked great but played horrible.
Epic Games and Mozilla back in March 2013 released a video preview of Unreal Engine 3 running in the web browser. It looked really great but was only a video and not the real thing. Here is the video that was released in March on YouTube.
Update: Epic Citadel is no longer available on Epic's website. We have removed the link as a consequence. You can still watch the video below that shows how it looked like back in 2013.
If you have watched the video you have probably wondered how the demo would play on your computer, or if you could play it at all on it. The Epic Citadel demonstration has now been released on the Unreal website so that you can find out right now. Head over to the demo page on the Unreal Engine website to start it on your computer right away.
Note that it needs to save more than 50 Megabytes on your PC and that the loading will take a while. You may notice slowdowns while the contents load.
The demo itself lets you walk through a medieval town. You can look left and right while you are walking around. Just left-click somewhere on the map to go there and move the mouse to the left or right to look around. You can alternatively take a guided tour. If you do, you walk around on the map automatically so that you can lean back and enjoy the graphics.
If you run the demo in fullscreen, you do get an option to run a benchmark (my two year old PC got an average FPS of 58.5 on a 1920x1200 resolution in Firefox 23, not bad at all.
If you open the demo page in any other browser you will receive a notification that the browser is currently not supported. You can run the demo anyway but should consult the FAQ page first. Chrome for instance crashes currently and Internet Explorer does not support WebGL in current versions. Basically, Firefox is the browser to try the demo in right now.
Firefox users can remove the 60 frames per second cap the demo runs in currently. The following needs to be done to do so:
The Citadel demo shows how powerful HTML5 really is. While it may still take a years before we will see a major game releases in HTML5, it can certainly be said that the outlook is promising.
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.