Yesterday, Google launched its "Web Store," an online destination for extensions and "apps" for its Google Chrome web browser. Videogame publishing giant Electronic Arts is hopping on this train early.
EA has added a number of games to the Web Store, starting with color-matching balloon breaking game, Poppit!. Originally designed as a Flash game, Poppit! developers used Google's Web Toolkit to port the game to an HTML5 title. EA Chief Operating Officer John Schappert says the game has "never run faster and never looked better," and even refers to Chrome (along with HTML5 support) as a "new gaming platform." Poppit! is free to install in Chrome, and will come bundled as a default application in future versions of the browser.
EA has also added FIFA Superstars, Lord of Ultima, The Fancy Pants Adventure: World 2, Madden NFL Superstars, and Tiger Woods PGA TOUR Online to the Web Store. The publisher has also promised that Mirror's Edge 2D would be available, but the game is not currently available on the Web Store at the time of writing. (You can, however, direct your web browser here and play the Flash version in almost any browser.)
As someone who uses Chrome as his default web browser, the idea of a Web Store that houses applications and extensions is pleasing. Right now, many of these applications (with a few exceptions) are glorified bookmarks -- even most of Google's own applications simply open up the default website in a new tab.
It'll be interesting to see how publishing giants like EA use HTML5 and its Google partnership. At the very least it got them mentioning the words "Mirror" and "Edge" in a press release, and I can't find much to complain about that.