Harmless distractions like Angry Birds are perfectly acceptable browser game fodder, should you have nothing better to play, but a newly released port of emulator DOSbox for Google's Chrome browser is the superior option—especially if you love LucasArts adventure games.
NaClBox makes that possible. It's a newly released port of DOSbox—the free emulator used by the likes of id Software and LucasArts use for their classic MS-DOS re-releases (Wolfenstein 3D, Star Wars: Dark Forces) for modern day PCs. GOG.com uses DOSbox for its retro releases. Bethesda and 3D Realms recommend it too.
NaClBox takes advantage of Google Chrome's Native Client technology that lets developers host native applications in a browser. All it takes is a couple preference settings in Chrome, really. (Though, NaClBox's creators do warn of potential security and performance risks associate with enabling Native Client.)
And NaClBox works just fine, based on my experience playing games like The Secret of Monkey Island, Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis and Sim City 2000 in Chrome. The emulator port's creators have demos of a handful of classic DOS titles available for testing at the official NaClBox site.
Ultimately, what NaClBox could mean for old school gaming enthusiasts is one more way—one easier way—to play proto-PC games from their browser or Chrome OS—which, by the way, is coming to Samsung hardware this summer.
Head over to the official NaClBox site to learn more, then give the emulator a whirl if you're interested. Just go easy on the guys' bandwidth, OK?
Google isn't above killing a little productivity to prove the power of its web browser. The search engine king has released a special free browser-based version of Rovio's avian-flinging sensation Angry Birds on the Chrome Web Store, just to prove it can be done.
Announced earlier today at the Google I/O Conference in San Francisco, the new browser-based version of Angry Birds is a testament to how far Google's Chrome browser has come in a short time. According to Sundar Pichai, Google's senior vice president of Chrome, Angry Birds in a web browser wouldn't have been possible a year ago. With a graphics rendering speed ten-times-faster than earlier versions, today's Chrome can make it happen.
As can, incidentally, today's version of Safari. Today's version of Firefox, on the other hand, was a bust. No one uses Internet Explorer anymore, so we didn't even bother.
The free version of Angry Birds features the game's first level, Poached Eggs, along with a set of exclusive Chrome-themed levels. You can install it now via the Chrome Web Store. It runs rather nicely, and as an added bonus, remains cached for offline play.
Now if you'll excuse me, I've got pigs to kill.
Angry Birds flutters over to Chrome [VentureBeat]
Today Google made lots of news: They unveiled their new "cloud based" browser, they opened up a Google Store and, they started carrying a library of in-browser games including a new Mirror's Edge title.
Electronic Arts is teaming up with Google to bundle Poppit! with future releases of Chrome and say that thanks to Google's Web Toolkit the HTML5 version of the game has never looked better.
Other games coming to the Chrome store include quite a few titles we've already seen and played quite a bit on web browsers, games like Lords of Ultima, FIFA Superstars and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR Online.
One Chrome store surprise is the inclusion of Mirror's Edge 2D, which I hope is an awful lot like the wonderful iPhone and iPad versions of the game.
"The web has become an incredibly powerful platform for innovation, allowing users to do much more online than they ever imagined," said Sundar Pichai, VP of product management for Google Chrome. "The Chrome Web Store showcases the power of the open web and we're excited to have several gaming titles from EA as a part of it."