Google’s Chrome 21 will be on its way to the stable channel in about three months. When it finally arrives, Google’s ambitions to make Chrome the browser of choice for web-based gaming will be crystal clear.
There’s not much to see so far in the list of feature additions, but two items stand out. First, support for the mouse pointer lock spec has been switched on by default and it can now operate both in and out of full screen mode. It’s one of those seemingly minor tweaks that will make a big difference down the road, as pointer lock gives developers one more easy-to-implement feature that makes standards-based web gaming more like traditional desktop PC gaming.
Google has also turned on support for game controllers using the draft spec for the W3C GamepadAPI. With mouse cursors locked and gamepads at the ready, Chrome 21 is armed to the teeth and ready to take on the challenge of next-generation web gaming.
There’s no question that the Web is the platform of the future. And ever since they charged into the browser war, Google has been doing everything they can to convince people that Chrome is the best way to connect. With these new additions to Chrome 21 and previously-implemented bits like WebGL, hardware acceleration, and support for offline gaming, it’s clear that Google wants Chrome to be the one browser to rule them all.
It’s not enough for Chrome to run web productivity apps like Docs and Gmail faster than the competition. Google’s also doing their best to make sure that Chrome is on the cutting edge of gaming.
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