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  • Client


  • Project

    Flash vs HTML5

  • Deliverables

    Website Game

  • Links

    View Work

The Ask

We asked the internet a simple question. And the internet responded in a big way.

We have this thing here at Waste which we call Playschool. It’s nothing to do with the mental age of our developers, but an in-house initiative where we can have a bit of fun with new tech, learn about it, and more importantly see where we can take it. From gesture-based and kinetic Leap Motion projects, to fiddling around with Arduino and table football, to virtual reality with Oculus Rift and Google Cardboard, we explore, test and, well, play. Because everyone – from clients to consumers - likes to experience something different and this way, we’re better prepared to generate creative ideas that are innovative and fresh.

And that’s exactly what we did with this project. The idea was simple. A proof of concept game to test the capabilities of Flash Player 11.

Take one game and make it in two very different ways,

comparing our old friend Flash with the new kid on the block, HTML5. After sharing the game on Twitter, Adobe approached us and asked if they could use it to showcase the latest version of AIR running on iOS. Well, we said yes.

The project then quickly evolved. We ported the exact same game to HTML5, creating a custom 2D Web GL rendering engine that falls back to canvas for unsupported browsers. All versions of the game whether on mobile or desktop, were effectively the same.

Then, we asked people to play both and decide which was the most interactive gaming experience and the most visually stunning.

Sure enough, there were some serious opinions out there.

PlaySchool Product

Watch what happens
when Waste plays

The Answer


There had been rumblings around the internet about the future of Flash. We knew about it, but it didn’t worry us. We saw it as an opportunity to become the masters of a new format. But we wanted to give people the opportunity to directly compare the two; to show the differences and the similarities.

We did it by creating Waste Invaders, then we released it as an iOS app where we posted the exact same game to HTML5, so users could make the ultimate comparison.


A fully
web-based game

game control

We also adapted Waste Invaders to Leap Motion as part of a further experiment, allowing players to fend off aliens simply by moving their hand to control their craft.

The Results

Going viral from
a single tweet

A simple question sent our Playschool R&D project viral. We had over 100,000 hits to the microsite in one month, with 10,000 likes on Facebook and over 2,000 tweets. Over 11,000 people liked the site, and some interesting stats shone through, too: 6,600 voted for HTML5, and only 1100 voted for Flash. And, since 2012, we’ve seen that the winner really has taken it all.

Not only did we show ourselves as masters of both formats with this project, we also gave the internet something to talk about, (because the internet likes that) laying bare the two platforms in an effective and engaging way.

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