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The site was created by game and technology developer GarageGames in 2007 and released a year later. InstantAction allowed publishers and developers the ability to embed games across the internet through the use of InstantAction's embed-tech. Publishers were then able to set monetary rates, include social features, release free demos and more. Users were required to download an initial plug-in that was used across all games using the InstantAction platform. Although some games on InstantAction were over 2.5 GB in size, users only had to download the files necessary to start playing instead of the entire game itself. The rest of the game is then downloaded as the user plays. This greatly reduces the amount of time it takes to start playing larger games, usually within minutes instead of hours. Since the game files are stored on the user's hard-drive, it allowed them to instantly play the game wherever it was embedded.
InstantAction also hosted eight games that included a range of community features, including the ability to add friends, chat, and create parties which can jump from game to game together without being forced to leave the party and rejoin it.
History[edit | edit source]
In 2007, GarageGames received a majority investment by Barry Diller and Interactive Corporation (NASD: IACI). Soon after this announcement, GarageGames also announced the development of a new game platform called InstantAction. InstantAction.com went into open beta on March 31, 2008.
On March 17, 2009, the company announced that they had acquired the Tribes IP and were bringing Starsiege: Tribes to the browser.
On July 15, 2009, it was announced that Louis Castle would become the new CEO of GarageGames, taking Josh Williams' spot. It was also announced that InstantAction would be split into two divisions, one in Portland, Oregon and the other in Las Vegas, Nevada.
On March 13, 2010, the InstantAction website and its games were taken down for updates to include their embed-tech. On April 29, 2010, the company released a 20 minute demo of The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition with the option to buy the full game, while the previous games, known as the Arcade, remained offline.
In late October 2010, InstantAction lost publishing deals with both PennyArcade and Mad Otter Games. They also sold the Tribes IP to Global Agenda developer Hi-Rez Studios.
On November 11, 2010, InstantAction's community manager announced that the company was shutting down. Their TorquePowered.com website, which hosts the game engine Torque, was renamed to GarageGames after it was bought by Graham Software Development in January 2011.
Games[edit | edit source]
Fallen Empire: Legions is a first-person shooter that consists of two teams: team alpha and team beta. The game includes several gametypes, including deathmatch, team deathmatch and Capture the Flag. There are 4 kinds of weapons, including the chaingun, the rocket launcher, the grenade launcher and the laser rifle (Sometimes referred as the sniper rifle). Gameplay experience is very similar to the Tribes franchise, with the developers considering it a "spiritual successor." The game includes similar elements to Tribes as well, specifically jetpacks and voice packs, with the majority taken from Starsiege: Tribes, Tribes 2 and Tribes: Vengeance. One feature that differentiates Legions from the Tribes series is Overdrive, which allows the player to perform aerial maneuvers that are normally impossible with ordinary jets. Players must be going over 88 mph in order to activate Overdrive, unless they are using the Sentinel armor which provides instant Overdrive. There has also recently been mods to certain game servers where the player gets hand grenades and custom jet trails, though these aren't officially supported by the development team.
Rokkitball is a team-based game similar to basketball or soccer with futuristic weaponry. The game launched on InstantAction.com in April 2008 with support for up to eight players. Players move around an arena and use a magnetic beam to grab a ball and shoot it into holes in the wall to score points. Smaller, higher holes are worth more points than the lower, larger ones. Players have a limited amount of energy, which is needed to sprint and to use the "magno-beam" that holds the ball. Energy constantly regenerates when not being used. Players can shoot rockets in order to propel the ball, make enemy players lose all their energy, or knock the ball out of an enemy’s grip. There are currently four arenas for Rokkitball, called Gauntlet, Cathedral, S-Hook, and Canyon.
Marble Blast Online is a 3D platformer in which the player maneuvers a marble to collect gems or reach the end of the level. Variations of this game have been developed for the Xbox 360 and iPhone. The game features two primary modes. In the single-player “Time Attack” mode, the player must move the marble to the “finish pad” as quickly as possible. Some levels feature gems, which must be collected before the player can complete the level. This mode features 60 maps of varying difficulty. The player’s best time for each level is added to a leaderboard along with the best times of the player’s friends. In the “Gem Hunt” mode, which can be either single-player or multiplayer, the player tries to score as many points as possible by gathering gems within the allotted time. Gems are worth different amounts of points depending on their color; higher-value gems are usually harder to reach. This mode features 20 maps of varying difficulty. In the single-player mode, the player’s high score for each level is added to a leaderboard along with the high scores of the player’s friends. In the multiplayer mode, the player wins by collecting more points than the other players in his party.
Lore: Aftermath is a multiplayer mech combat game, and a sequel to Dark Horizons Lore: Invasion. Players control mechs called MAVs. Players can use preconfigured mechs or access the “MAV Lab” to create their own with customized looks, weapons, and statistics. The preset mechs include the Viper Recon, Viper Scout, Viper Attack, Malice Defender, Malice Brawler, and Malice Bombardier. Viper mechs are faster and lighter; Malice mechs are tougher, slower, and pack more firepower. The game features three modes. In the free for all mode, players get points by killing each other. The first one to a certain point limit, or the one with the most kills at the end of the time limit, wins the round. The team deathmatch mode is similar except that players are grouped into teams, and the first team to reach the point limit wins the round. In the mini nuke mode, players win by grabbing a “mini nuke” and bringing it into the enemy team’s base. The party host can also set a time limit and a respawn limit.
Think Tanks was originally created as a stand-alone game for the PC, and was eventually ported to InstantAction. There are two game modes: Deathmatch and Scrum. Both can be played with or without teams. In Deathmatch, players try to shoot and destroy the other tanks. In Scrum, players try to get a ball and drive it to a goal placed on the field. There are three main tanks, named Trout, Boxeador, and Destrozar. There are also three unlockable tanks, named Dasher, Schlager, and Blitzen. These vary in handling, speed, firepower, and armor.
ZAP! is a multiplayer shooter. The player controls a triangular ship and tries to accomplish different objectives depending on the mode. Most modes involve shooting enemy ships with various weapons and moving flags around. There are six modes in ZAP! These include BustIn, CTF (Capture the Flag), ZoneControl, Retrieve, Hunters, and ZapMatch. In BustIn, players must deliver flags to enemy-controlled zones. In Capture the Flag, players must get into the enemy base, retrieve a flag, and bring it to their own base. In ZoneControl, players must safely escort their flag carrier into each control zone. In Retrieve, players must collect flags and bring them back to their zone. In Hunters, players must kill other ships and bring their flags to a nexus; returning multiple flags gives a bonus. ZapMatch is a deathmatch; players simply try to shoot down the ships on the other team. Each mode features several different maps. In most modes, players get to choose primary and secondary “modules” in the “loadout zone” before leaving their respawn area. These modules include Turbo Boost, Shield Generator, Repair Module, Enhanced Sensor, and Cloak Field Modulator. The player can activate these during the matches to help them in various ways; for example the Repair Module increases the player’s health if he is injured. Players can also collect health boosts on the maps.
Galcon is a real-time strategy game where players try to eliminate the enemy by sending ships to take over their planets. Every ship that is sent will destroy one ship docked on the enemy planet; once the planet is reduced to 0 ships, a ship can conquer it. The planet will then begin to produce ships for the new owner. Larger planets produce ships faster.n most maps, some planets start out neutral, with zero or more ships defending them. These will not produce more ships until conquered by a player. There is no correlation between the size of the planet and the number of ships initially defending them. The single-player campaign mode features a series of levels of increasing difficulty. A cartoon panel precedes each level, providing a little backstory and sometimes explaining a feature of the level. Each computer enemy has a specific play style to which the player must adapt in order to beat the level. In the quick battle mode, players can play matches against each other or computer-controlled bots. Before the match, the host can configure various options such as the number of planets and the production level of the “home planets,” which are the planets that start out controlled by the players. Home planets are always the largest planets, so changing this setting is equivalent to setting the maximum planet size. In addition, there is a tutorial, which teaches basic controls and strategy, and a practice mode, which is basically a two-player multiplayer game against an easy bot.
Ace of Aces is a World War I dog-fighting game where players fly fighter planes and attempt to score points by shooting down enemy planes or blowing up the enemy base. Players can choose to play as either the Axis or the Allies. There is one default plane for each side; players can purchase additional planes with different, generally better statistics. Plane statistics include speed, sturdiness, maneuvering, rate of climb, and firepower. In the single-player Training Mode, players can complete two tutorials: one on Marksmanship, which teaches the basic controls, and one on Ground Attack, which teaches how to assault the enemy base.
The single-player Challenge Mode offers two challenges for the player. In “Balloon Madness,” the player must shoot down waves of flak balloons as quickly as possible. In “Turkey Shoot,” players must gun down waves of enemy planes. When one wave is destroyed, time is added to the clock and another wave appears. The player loses when the clock strikes zero. One point is scored for each enemy balloon or plane shot down. Friendly balloons eventually appear in Balloon Madness; shooting one down causes the player to lose a point.
The Multiplayer Battle Mode features five different modes: Team Dogfight, Furball, Fox and Hounds, Rescue the Spy (CTF), and Base War. All five modes use a time limit, not a point limit. The player or team with the most points at the end of the allotted time is the winner. Team Dogfight is a team-based deathmatch in which players score points by shooting down planes on the enemy team. Furball is a free-for-all in which players score by shooting down any other player. In Fox and Hounds, players score points by securing and holding on to the "Fox." Rescue the Spy is a capture-the-flag mode. Players score by securing the Spy from the enemy base and bringing him back to their own. In Base War, players score by blowing up the enemy base.
Rescue the Spy and Base War feature bases. The host can set the level of base defenses as none, normal, or heavy. On the normal and heavy settings, gun towers and balloons guard the bases. The balloons relay enemy positions to flak gunners on the ground. The towers and flak gunners will deal heavy damage to incoming enemies. Players can destroy these towers and balloons, but they reappear once the player destroys the base, in Base War, or captures the spy, in Rescue the Spy.
Rev is an arcade racing game developed by Luma Arcade. It is currently in closed beta.
The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition is an enhanced remake of The Secret of Monkey Island developed by LucasArts. It was originally released on July 15, 2009 for the PC, Xbox Live Arcade and iPhone/iPod touch. On April 29, 2010 InstantAction released a 20 minute demo of the game to show off the companies new embed technology, along with the option to buy the full game for $9.99.
Instant Jam is a music rhythm game similar to Guitar Hero, only in the browser. At launch the game will support 2000 songs, with more added in the months thereafter. Instant Jam scans the user's hard drive for any songs matching the services own database of note charts, and offers Amazon.com and iTunes links to buy songs they don't already have. Players can either use their keyboard or Rock Band and Guitar Hero controllers to play. While the game doesn't feature head-to-head multiplayer, players can challenge friends to beat their own high scores. There is also an in-game store where players can buy virtual guitars and other visual effects using credits they received after leveling up or gaining fans.
Instant Jam is currently in beta and only available on Facebook, but will eventually be playable nearly anywhere through the use of InstantAction's embed technology.
Previous games[edit | edit source]
Screwjumper was a game where players try to get to the bottom of the mine shaft and then escape it after detonating it. The story is that aliens have invaded and as part of the ScrewJumper team, the player needed to help to destroy those mines and thus save the planet. The player had a choice of three different characters playable in 20 different levels (ranging from very easy to very hard) which contained different obstacles as well as bonuses. The game was both single-player and multiplayer and featured 5 modes (although only 4 were available at any point) and eventually dropped to 2 modes. It wasn't popular. Only a couple of people played it at a time to try.
Cyclomite was an action/puzzle game that was removed in 2008. The game involved rotating a multicolored sphere as meteors of different colors approached it. Players had to align the sphere so that the meteors made contact with the section that was the same color. Ian Tornay (Crash7800) explained why the game was taken off the site in a video podcast, saying that "A lot of the users who tried Cyclomite as their first game didn't stick around."