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Pre-GDC 2011: Adobe 3D-Capable 'Molehill' Flash Beta Launches, Unity Working On Flash Export Feature

Adobe has launched the public beta of its Flash Player with hardware accelerated 3D support, codenamed Molehill, while Unity has begun full production on a Flash Player exporting utility.
Adobe has launched the public beta of its Flash Player with hardware accelerated 3D support, codenamed Molehill. Available to download now from Adobe, the beta was announced at yesterday's Flash Gaming Summit, and can run full-screen 3D scenes. Adobe is hoping that its new 3D Flash technology will be able to rival competitor Unity's 3D capabilities. Jennifer Taylor, senior director of product and strategy for gaming solutions at Adobe, said to Gamasutra last month: "We are thinking very strategically about ways in which we can reduce the cost and the pain and the challenges for developers so that they can embrace the new capabilities we are adding to the runtime around 3D." However, Unity has its own news to share that may tip the balance. The Unity team has been investigating the possibility of adding a Flash Player exporting option to Unity, and has now moved into full production of the feature. Unity users will be able to implement either Flash Player or the Unity Web Player for their games. In a post on the company's blog, Unity engineer Lucas Meijer said "We’re excited by the opportunity to target the Flash Player and all of its features with Unity, but there will be plenty of experiences that the Unity plugin is better suited for." No details have been provided yet regarding when this feature will be ready, and how much it will cost. Earlier this month, Unity also announced a close partnership with Sony Ericsson that will highlight Unity-distributed games on the new Xperia Play mobile phone. The Unity Xperia Play API will come in an update to Unity 3D developers this spring.

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