Spelunky has been in the news regularly as of late due to its release on Xbox Live Arcade. While excellent, that version no longer classes as the most recent release of the game due to lone developer Darius Kazemi having just finished porting the original to HTML5.
Spelunky was originally released back in 2008 on Windows and was developed by Derek Yu. The software used to create it is GameMaker, an easy to use, yet complete games development toolkit. More recently the company behind GameMaker, YoYo Games, launched a new version called GameMaker: Studio, which allows games to be configured for a number of different platforms, including HTML5.
Using Studio, it’s possible to import projects from older versions of GameMaker and in most cases get them working without much pain. In the case of Spelunky, which is quite a complex game, Kazemi did have to solve a number of issues, including sound problems and a broken rendering pipeline.
Even so, this is a few weeks of work to get an excellent indie game running inside a web browser. The result says as much about the quality of GameMaker as a toolset as it does about the original implementation and Kazemi’s hard work.
The original game classes as freeware, so it’s available to download and play via the Spelunky World website. But by porting it to HTML5 you no longer need to be running Windows and don’t have to shell out for the XBLA version, either unless you long for that graphical update, multiplayer, and/or the ability to play from your couch.
If you’d like to try it out in your browser, head on over to the Tiny Subversions Spelunky game page.
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