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The Death and Preservation of Adobe Flash

Adobe Flash Logo © Adobe

Adobe Flash is a versatile software released in 1996 that thousands of online creators have used to make their own animations and browser games.

For the past twenty years websites like Newgrounds and Addicting Games have built thriving communities using Flash as a foundation, however, this year on December 31st, Adobe Flash will be discontinued and the thousands of games that require Flash to play will no longer work.

Since many gamers have fond memories of playing Flash games on school computers while pretending to focus in class, an individual who goes by the screen name BlueMaxima created a preservation project called “Flashpoint”

Internet history and culture is important, and content made on web platforms including, but not limited to Adobe Flash, make up a significant portion of that culture. This project is dedicated to preserving as many experiences from these platforms as possible, so that they aren’t lost to time.

BlueMaxima’s Flashpoint “Welcome” Page

Flashpoint is an archive of over 59,000 Flash games and over 6,000 animations that uses a custom built application called the Flashpoint Secure Player.

Flashpoint’s main menu. Courtesy of Flashpoint’s home page.

BlueMaxima and the Discord server of volunteers are hard at work adapting games before the deadline arrives. There are too many games out there to possibly include all of them, but if you have a specific game you would love to play after December 31st that isn’t on this list, then you can request the game to be added in BlueMaxima’s Discord server. (Just make sure you read the rules provided before joining the server with at this link)

Even after the Flash Player is gone, some sites will still save the files for some of their library, but if files for a specific game aren’t saved or available using the WaybackMachine, then they are lost forever.

Flashpoint is on version 8.2, and currently there are two versions available for download:

Flashpoint UltimateFlashpoint Infinity
413gb download, 480gb when extracted.504mb download, 1.8gb when extracted.
Every game and animation is available right on your hardrive. requires no internet connection.
Small file size but you will need to download each game and animation before you want to play it.

To learn more about Flashpoint’s development and how it operates under the hood, I interviewed Nosamu, a programmer volunteering his talents to help preserve flash games.

As an Administrator, I’m one of BlueMaxima’s ‘second in command’, and I help oversee basically all aspects of the project. To get to the position that I’m in, I’ve helped with many aspects of the project.

Nosamu’s description of his role in the project.

Nosamu is responsible for the game requests spreadsheet, a few hundred game submissions of his own, the Mac build of flashpoint, and other major programs and innovations to Flashpoint that I personally lack the tech knowledge to comprehend, but are massive contributions to the product nonetheless.

Nosamu also has a blog about coding with tutorials to educate yourself about all sorts of programs, Flash included.

Nosamu’s Q&A

Q: What are the most interesting aspects of working on Flashpoint?

A: Figuring out how these old technologies work is really interesting, and it’s super awesome to see a game you’ve been trying to get working finally play properly. Finding lost games is also super exciting!

Q: What made you want to join the project in the first place?

A: My friend linked me a Gamasutra article about the project and I figured I should join and save some of my favorite games!

Q: What are the biggest challenges you’ve overcome while working on Flashpoint?

A: As a project, I think the biggest challenges we face are finding ways around the limits of the various technologies we use. For example, since we have tens of thousands of games saved, it gets more and more difficult to back up all of the millions of game files in a repository. We haven’t overcome the challenge per se, but we are dealing with issues as they come up.

Q: What was your favorite website to play Flash games?

A: NotDoppler was always my favorite Flash game portal – I played most of the games in the Puzzle section of the site. I always looked forward to Thursdays when they would add new games! I also enjoyed games in the popular Launch genre – check my “Launch, Upgrade, Repeat” playlist in Flashpoint to see my favorites!

Learn more about Flashpoint and support the project here.

BlueMaxima’s Twitter

Nosamu’s Blog

For more news about Indie games and the future of Flash, be sure to follow The Indie Explorer on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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