Friday Flash Fun Forever
July 14, 2023 12:04 PM   Subscribe

Still mourning the death of Flash, and with it an entire era of online gaming? Enter (9o3o), the new searchable (and playable!) web frontend for the incredible Flashpoint preservation project. Browse over 145,000 preserved Flash games powered by the Ruffle emulator, and share your favorites with a simple link. Highlights: DICEWARS - Fly Guy - Alien Hominid - Samorost - Crimson Room - Nanaca Crash! - Line Rider - Don't Shoot the Puppy - Bloxorz - Gimme Friction Baby - The Impossible Quiz - Portal: The Flash Version - Feed the Head - Sprout - Achievement Unlocked - QWOP - Cursor*10 - Dino Run - Grid16 - Meat Boy - SHIFT - You Have to Burn the Rope - 6 Differences - Canabalt - Don't Shit Your Pants! - Nevermore 3 - Small Worlds - Don't Look Back - Redder - VVVVVV (demo) - Synopsis Quest - The Room Tribute - The Scale of the Universe - Mitoza - Wonderputt - Bullet Bill 3 - Frog Fractions - Dys4ia - Snakes on a Cartesian Plane - Want (gulp) more? Download Flashpoint Infinity to stream over 156,000 games from 70+ platforms (including Shockwave, Java, and Unity) plus over 27,000 animations... or clear some space for the monster 1.76 terabyte Flashpoint Ultimate to store every single file locally. So much more inside!

Protip: Right-click any game and hit "Enter fullscreen" to get the full-screen treatment, or "Open Save Manager" to download save files!

An alternative front-end for searching and playing games [exact match only]

Flashpoint Discord

Contribution tutorial - how to help add games

Flashpoint project page at the non-profit Open Collective - how the project is supported

"Flashpoint: A Tribute to Web Games", a free 341-page illustrated book by Flashpoint founder Ben "BlueMaxima" Latimore
112 pages of extended interviews from the book (organized by interview in the left-hand sidebar)

How Flash Games Shaped the Video Game Industry: an interactive scroller by Jonas Richner

Ars Technica: The rise and fall of Adobe Flash

Some more games that are playable on 9o3o:
Simple games:
Curveball - Double Wires - Mini-Putt - Too Many Ninjas - TROGDOR! - Helicopter Game - Tangerine Panic - Paper Toss - Sock and Awe - Scary Maze Game - Winnie the Pooh's Home Run Derby

Interactive toys:
Windows RG - Interactive Buddy - Line Rider - Falling Bush - Spank the Monkey - Katamari Damacy

Narrative, meta, and art games:
I Fell in Love with the Majesty of Colors - Sissy's Magical Ponycorn Adventure - Gretel & Hansel - Loved - The Republia Times - Onomastica - The Binding of Isaac (demo) - I Wish I Were the Moon - The Company of Myself - Today I Die - One Chance - A Duck has an Adventure - Every day the same dream - Wolfenstein 1-D - The Bright in the Screen

Action and platformers:
Robot Unicorn Attack - Tuper Tario Tros. - fl0w - Escaladeby - Icycle - The Line Game - Tower of Heaven - Super Smash Flash - Captain Forever - Solipskier - Spewer

Puzzle and strategy games:
3D Logic - This is the Only Level - Submachine - Aether - Exploit - Hex Empire - Pandemic II - Plants vs. Zombies - Bloons 2 - Bloons TD - Candy Crush - Bejeweled 2 - Green Moon Lab - The Mind Bender - Warthog Launch - Proximity - The World's Hardest Game - Click the Frog - Draw Play
Note that while the Ruffle player is still under active development and unable to play some games reliably, installing Flashpoint Infinity will assure smooth playback of virtually every game, including such gems as:
The Mystery of Time and Space - N: Way of the Ninja [precursor to the brilliant N++] - Fancy Pants Adventure - Winterbells - Hell of Sand - Paintball - Hoshi Saga - Bloons - Fantastic Contraption - :the game: - The Unfair Platformer - ROM CHECK FAIL [CW: epilepsy] - Chronotron - Hunted Forever - Crush the Castle [the inspiration for Angry Birds] - Continuity - First Person Tetris - Miami Shark - TIME FCUK - William and Sly II - The Black Forest - You Only Live Once - Tone Matrix - Demolition City - Happy Wheels - Cream Wolf - Evacuation - Give Up Robot - Super Mario Bros. Crossover - Breakout on Acid - FaveRunner (MeFi's Own!) - Missilebreak Outvaders - Pixelhate - american dream - Focus - A Game About Game Literacy - Hexagon [precursor to Super Hexagon] - Pretentious Game - ...and many more!
And now's a great time to download Infinity -- version 12 ("Axolotl") dropped just a few days ago, bringing automatic updates, a playtime counter, space-saving features, and a new and improved workflow for volunteer curators.
posted by Rhaomi (71 comments total) 133 users marked this as a favorite
Pro-tip for Don't Shoot the Puppy: Seriously, don't shoot the puppy.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:06 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

Awesome. Great round-up!
posted by Fizz at 12:11 PM on July 14

Oh, I was so hoping The God And Devil Show might be in this archive, but it sadly is not. Poor lost media.
posted by hippybear at 12:14 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

How long has it been, Bomboozle 2, old friend? Too long. Too long.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 12:20 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

thanks for this.

I miss flash friday
posted by clavdivs at 12:24 PM on July 14 [6 favorites]

Elephant Quest? Is it Elephant Quest time again?!?!?
posted by epj at 12:26 PM on July 14

i need to see if i can find the original meowmania.swf and see if ruffle will emulate it
posted by i used to be someone else at 12:30 PM on July 14

It has orisinal games!!!!!
I can play pocketful of stars!!!
posted by Adridne at 12:38 PM on July 14 [18 favorites]

Excellent. I wonder if they have any of the games I wrote 20-odd years ago. It would probably help if I could remember what any of them were called...
posted by pipeski at 12:46 PM on July 14 [3 favorites]

By that measure, they could ALL be games you wrote 20-odd years ago.
posted by hippybear at 12:48 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

Flash was an amazing product, light years ahead of its time. I went to the Flash Forward convention in 2000 at Moscone where people - including some of my coworkers - were doing demos of what were basically AJAX calls using ActionScript, allowing Flash apps to talk to databases. It was wild. Even now, these games look and feel like modern mobile apps. Vector graphics! Complex audio integration! Truly the stuff of the future. It is a real shame that it all got taken out by security vulnerabilities.
posted by grumpybear69 at 12:52 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

Could a non-vulnerable version of Flash be built? I don't know what all the security flaws in the product were, I only know it required nearly constant patching during its existence and they never did seem to get to where it wasn't swiss cheese.
posted by hippybear at 12:54 PM on July 14

I loved developing in Flash, mostly "interactive" web sites and stuff like screensavers. People were even willing to pay decent coin for that sort of thing. I swear the web peaked in 2001 or so.
posted by maxwelton at 1:03 PM on July 14 [6 favorites]

I love You Have to Burn the Rope. It's such a dumb little joke of a game, but it's pulled off so earnestly that it still makes me smile all these years later.

Now you're a hero, you beat the whole damn ga-ame...
posted by firechicago at 1:04 PM on July 14 [7 favorites]

my disappointment is immeasurable, and my friday is ruined

meowmania.swf does not yet work in ruffle's desktop app
posted by i used to be someone else at 1:17 PM on July 14

my joy is immeasurable, and my friday is improved is a suitable update of meowmania
posted by i used to be someone else at 1:20 PM on July 14 [3 favorites]

Great post, but also kinda creepy? Cause I was just looking for a way to play the old Ferry Halim Orsinal games, and a rabbit trail of a search turned up the Flashpoint project, and I told my Discord about it yesterday. And now this FPP. Quick, Rhaomi, what color am I thinking about?
posted by xedrik at 1:31 PM on July 14 [4 favorites]

Oh man, this is like seeing old friends! QWOP! The Impossible Quiz! Samorost! And it’s so good that the Submachines were saved and are still playable - those were amazing puzzles and I’m definitely going to go through them again.

I tried pulling up a couple of my old Orisinal favorites and they stayed stuck on a loading screen, so I guess everything isn’t playable (yet)? But I am loving this. Thanks so much for posting!

Gtg, have to get back to the stupid Impossible Quiz because I don’t remember how the Search question works…
posted by Mchelly at 1:32 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Correction: I remember how. I can’t remember where.
posted by Mchelly at 1:36 PM on July 14

They linked Infinite Wheel Dub Selector... I loved that thing.
posted by ovvl at 1:42 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Viewing the 0.001% cream of the crop of these games, makes one almost nostalgic for Flash.

All of the glory, none of the sorry.
posted by fairmettle at 1:48 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Thanks. I always really liked Shuffle, glad to see it's available.
posted by mokey at 1:49 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Fly Guy! I still think of that as some weird ideal of what games can be. I used to daydream of what a high budget spiritual successor could look like. I'm so glad it's remembered.
posted by Hermione Dies at 1:50 PM on July 14 [1 favorite] recently updated their Flash Library too, also using Ruffle. I don't know to what extent the archives overlap with 9o3o. Archive's isn't just games: soundboards, random Deviant Art pieces, etc.

.ooo is an unusual TLD! It launched some 11 years ago from an Indian registrar.
posted by Nelson at 2:13 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

Could a non-vulnerable version of Flash be built?

There's a product called CheerpX that runs the real Flash runtime inside WebAssembly, so it's as secure as modern JavaScript is.
posted by BungaDunga at 2:17 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

There's a product called CheerpX that runs the real Flash runtime inside WebAssembly, so it's as secure as modern JavaScript is.

Some level of my brain is reading this sentence like I'm reading SF in the Eighties and it's all word salad but hey, okay!
posted by hippybear at 2:19 PM on July 14 [4 favorites]

Simultaneously saying hello and good-bye to the weekend. Time for some Desktop Tower Defense!
posted by Ufez Jones at 2:30 PM on July 14 [5 favorites]

I just learned about the Flashpoint project on Wednesday, watching this episode of Linus Tech Tips. Immediately grabbed it and found some old favorites - CastleWars, Escape the Red Giant, and the original Swords and Sandals.

I am very happy.
posted by hanov3r at 2:36 PM on July 14

Ahhhhh, Desktop Tower Defense! I spent so much time with that one! So good!

Anyone remember that other tower defense game where you played as humans defending against space aliens and all your towers used SFnal technology? You could merge them periodically, usually making them better but occasionally seeming to make them much, much worse. (And eventually there would be so much going on that the browser would slow to an absolute crawl.) That was a fun one too, though I really could have used some pointers on good/bad combinations.
posted by johnofjack at 2:40 PM on July 14

Oh wow - Making Fiends: Pumpkin Plunkin'

posted by jazon at 2:49 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

posted by avocet at 3:10 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Hex Empire does not like trying to run on my ipad.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 3:20 PM on July 14

The Orisinal games didn't work for me, here, either. But, despair not! They are available here, in all their clicky, quirky, tastefully subdued music goodness.

Now, if someone can give me lead on the wiffle ball game that on either Candystand or Nabisco's website, I'd much appreciate it.
posted by mollweide at 3:21 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

OMG they have Sushi Cat! I wasted so much time playing that!
posted by Daily Alice at 3:29 PM on July 14

Ruffle, itself, is a more-secure Flash runtime.

Lately we've been taking stock of just how much of internet culture is unusable or just plain gone because of shortsightedness and financial concerns. Adobe's decision to not close Flash's many security holes, or rewrite it, but to just kill it, make this entire sector of internet culture unusable, extinguished, for awhile, a whole sector of web culture. I see why they did it, the tech energy had moved away from websites to mobile devices, there wasn't as much money to be made maintaining an old tool even if a lot of people still relied on it. I understand why they did it; I still think it was a terrible decision.

It's not spoken of much lately how ubiquitous Flash was. Whole HTML sites would be scrapped and replaced with Flash. Big Important Companies would just use a Flash applet as their website. There were worries at that time that it would basically replace the World Wide Web.

It wasn't just Adobe's negligence that ended Flash's run. There was Apple's refusal to allow Flash to run on their mobile platforms, which the reason given was poor battery performance, but likely was also because it was seen as a way to get around Apple's say-so on what software would run on them. That's something else that doesn't get mentioned a lot lately, at least in my hearing, how mobile platforms were going to outright replace PCs. Phones and tablets are common, but that didn't quite happen.

It has come to my attention that Flash, itself, didn't actually die. Browsers ended support for it, but the Adobe Creative Cloud product Animate is just Flash renamed. Looking through its feature list, it can generate HTML5 applets. I wonder if someone had their old project files, if they could load them into current Animate and simply rebuild it for HTML5?

Two Flash applets that I would like to see revived (and probably aren't in this collection) are TimmyBigHands' old "game," called KILL A GUY, and Steamshovel Harry, another vaguely game-like object. It's still up at Kongregate, where it can be "played" in Ruffle. It has music from MeFi's own bradsucks.

I thought KILL A GUY was completely lost, but I managed to find it on the Wayback Machine just now, although it doesn't seem to work every time. Try this? It also requires Ruffle. It's fun... well, not really, but it's really short.
posted by JHarris at 3:32 PM on July 14 [4 favorites]

Oh wow, indeed! I saw Pumpkin Plunkin' from Making Fiends and immediately went into an Amy Winfrey reverie.

Browsing further unearthed Feed Me from Muffin Films.

And then it turns out that the Muffin Films is still around, even if it's clearly not been updated in some time (It's HTTP).
posted by ursus_comiter at 3:39 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

QWOP still doesn't work.

Well, maybe it does; I can't tell.
posted by yhbc at 4:11 PM on July 14 [10 favorites]

are they on there... yes, every episode of Booty Call is on there, I worked on a bunch of these, I honestly could not tell you which one was the first, maybe like #4 or 5? But I was there until the end. Super crass, nobody involved in making it actually liked the guy who wrote it and voiced the lead.

oh god Weekend Pussy Hunt is there too, that was one of my first gigs in the animation industry. (It is not about what the title wants you to think it is about, it is a pseudo-noir series about a dog who is going to kill a cat who pissed him off, and it was made while the events chronicled by the Buzzfeed article on John Krickfalusi were going on.)

I worked so hard on all that stuff and it all looks so terrible now. Both of those series were cranked out on a weekly basis and designed to be downloadable in a reasonable amount of time by a dialup connection. Such a weird set of constraints.
posted by egypturnash at 4:39 PM on July 14 [3 favorites]

I'm still bad at Line Rider.
posted by ursus_comiter at 4:48 PM on July 14

May I recommend: Yeti Sports (I only ever played the very first one - didn't even know there were sequels!)
posted by moonmilk at 4:59 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]

Hurrah! The games my friend and I made are all there!

...unfortunately none of them seem to work correctly in Ruffle yet.

Ah well, maybe it will get there eventually. It's just nice to see them included.
posted by Zargon X at 5:06 PM on July 14

aaah! rat maze 2. thank you! the walkthroughs are still up

these soundtracks were great, this company was amazing
posted by eustatic at 6:08 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Homestar runner!
posted by sdrawkcab at 6:13 PM on July 14 [4 favorites]

Ah, there are GROW games in here! Remember GROW?
posted by JHarris at 6:39 PM on July 14 [6 favorites]

can't seem to find hugpunx, dammit

But samorost! I have to admit I've completely forgotten how to play it. I will, however, admit to sometimes blurting out “beng!” if I am confused about something, like the little working-in-the-field guys do when you click on them
posted by scruss at 7:32 PM on July 14

also, remember when portal was a flash game
posted by eustatic at 7:46 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Portal the flash game was an independent development from the actual Portal game, It was based on trailer footage and was created without any experience of the real game at all. It's a fascinating story. How A Flash Game Changed Portal History [1h]
posted by hippybear at 7:48 PM on July 14 [3 favorites]

One of my favorite Flash things was Ishkur's Guide to Electronic Music. The new version no longer has a flash dependency.
posted by mmascolino at 7:53 PM on July 14 [4 favorites]

Don't forget Newgrounds Auditorium Infinity, which includes a massive grab of Flash animations from Newgrounds.
posted by BiggerJ at 8:26 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]

Pro-tip for Don't Shoot the Puppy: Seriously, don't shoot the puppy.

counterpoint: what if I shoot the puppy
posted by taquito sunrise at 9:08 PM on July 14

oh god i'm gonna lose another couple of months trying to get that dolphin to jump to outer space again aren't i
posted by rouftop at 10:20 PM on July 14 [3 favorites]

The singing horses are back !!! I love you

Once I worked L2 tech support for Macromedia troubleshooting the most insane flash builds people with corporate funding could dream up, poring over 1000 page (printed) ActionScript and Director Lingo manuals... so .... about 20 years ago, huh.
posted by yoHighness at 4:32 AM on July 15 [2 favorites]

previously on the singing horses, of course I got the singing horses from here
posted by yoHighness at 4:35 AM on July 15

I think when Flash was killed I had an extra 2 hours a day on my hands.
posted by MtDewd at 4:48 AM on July 15 [1 favorite]

This made me so happy! I used to fool around with "Theme Hotel" and got hooked.

It's so cool to play this stupid little thing again! My hotels are magic! LOL
posted by james33 at 5:11 AM on July 15 [1 favorite]

There's so many many many things here, the list sprawls on and on. If you look through the animation section you'll find a whole lotta edgy and questionable internet humor from the past two decades. One might argue that some of it was better off lost, and definitely a lot of it hasn't aged well, but it's good that it's preserved even so, that we don't present some false impression of the early years of the internet, which despite what you might think there is a real danger of happening as the years stretch longer.
posted by JHarris at 9:03 AM on July 15 [2 favorites]

If you look through the animation section you'll find a whole lotta edgy and questionable internet humor from the past two decades.

You don't got the balls!

Woah, I'm spinning!
posted by loquacious at 11:57 AM on July 15

Maybe this is a question for AskMe, but is there any way for me to download my favorite little Flash game and play it offline?
posted by Soliloquy at 4:59 PM on July 15

That'd be Flashpoint Infinity, which downloads games as required instead of filling a terabyte of hard drive space.
posted by polytope subirb enby-of-piano-dice at 5:18 PM on July 15 [1 favorite]

Wait. I have this 1.5T hard drive just sitting here. Hrm.

No, I'd best not. I bought like two charity game bundles a few years ago and have only played like 3 of the something like 10K games I got in those.
posted by hippybear at 5:54 PM on July 15 [2 favorites]

At last Chimgam lives again! A simulation of ddongchim. In the early 2000s, I hosted this on my website as Korean Arse Shooter. It often attracted several thousands hits per day, topping out around the low teens for a few months. By checking the IP logs, I could see when some school PC labs became periodically highly active, presumably reflecting daily or weekly classroom lessons. So glad this archive exists!
posted by meehawl at 6:01 PM on July 15 [1 favorite]

That Grinning Colossus is so tanky! Any tips on how to defeat it?
posted by donio at 11:47 AM on July 16 [1 favorite]

Haha! They have an escape game I submitted to a JayIsGames competition as an exercise to teach myself ActionScript! I played it right through on ruffles and then it crashed at the end. They warned at the beginning some AS3 stuff isn't implemented, though. Still - a blast from the past. Thanks for sharing.
posted by Sparx at 2:54 PM on July 16 [2 favorites]

Mod note: [btw, this post has been added to the sidebar]
posted by taz (staff) at 3:40 AM on July 17 [1 favorite]

Dammit! Nanaca Crash was working fine when I tried it Friday, but now it's broken! Waaah!
posted by slogger at 9:12 AM on July 17 [1 favorite]

I can't get ANYTHING to work. Not for the past two days, not on any device. I don't know if they have a limit of number of times you can access, or if something just broke. But I'm bummed because Dice Wars is just a great little waste of time, and I was really liking playing it on my tablet...

[ON EDIT: Holy dice Batman, it lives! Maybe dropping off of 9o3o was a DMCA takedown?]
posted by caution live frogs at 2:40 PM on July 17 [1 favorite]

Flashpoint has a policy about not distributing things that are for sale somewhere, I think?
posted by JHarris at 8:16 PM on July 17

(I'm not sure that DICEWARS is for sale, but the site is still up.)
posted by JHarris at 8:25 PM on July 17

Thanks, taz!

I checked the Discord and they were apparently having some issues with the API, but it looks to be working now. If the outage reoccurs you can always use this alternative site that shares the same game database; to turn an link into the alt, just copy the game ID (everything after the question mark) from the 9o3o URL and paste it after the number sign at the end of this address:

Of course, the best option is to just download Flashpoint Infinity, which has vastly better support for game compatibility. It's really impressive stuff -- some games even come with a little mini-browser in order to trick the game file into thinking it's running on the original site, to defeat site-locks and the like.
posted by Rhaomi at 4:34 PM on July 20 [1 favorite]

I used to enjoy playing PlanetDefender which was written by a mefite, as I recall. Ruffle allows it to be played, kind of, though it's glitchy enough to not make it worthwhile. Would love to see that one working again.
posted by maxwelton at 9:21 PM on July 21 [1 favorite]

Can someone remember the name of that interactive flash animation series featuring a swamp-dwelling alien scientist and his hapless nephew?
posted by larrybob at 6:04 PM on July 29

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