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Flashpoint seeks to save thousands of Flash games before they go away forever

Giving new meaning to "Flash memory."

Odds are that if you’re reading this, you know of the many platforms SEGA has released games for. From their own hardware ranging from the Master System to the Dreamcast and on to others such as the various PlayStations, Xboxes, and Nintendo consoles and handhelds released since the turn of the century, and of course, even the PC. SEGA’s had a hand in it all.

Rarely discussed, however, are some of their Flash creations.

As time wears on, game preservation has increasingly become more and more of an ongoing concern, especially with so many digital-only titles which rely on servers to acquire and run. But often lost in the conversation are those games which were created for Adobe’s Flash web format.

Adobe has been phasing out Flash, and it looks like the format could be at its end in this year of 2020. However, a group under the banner of BlueMaxima has been working to preserve as many video games (as well as animations and other creations) which were created in Flash as possible through a program they call “Flashpoint.” So far, they’ve managed to archive more than 38,000 games and 2,400 animations.

The significance to SEGA fans is that throughout the aughts, the company released a fair number of Flash webgames in order to help promote their products. Titles featured include Astro Boy, several Sonic games, a couple of Super Monkey Balls, and a plethora of Puyo Puyo. Here’s a list that the search term “SEGA” brings up:

Admittedly, some of these are just along for the ride by pure happenstance. Looking at you, PlayTowerDefenseGames.com

Admittedly, these aren’t exactly Triple-A material, but there are some interesting curios to be found. You’ve got a Chao snow globe, an Eggman clock, and a Sonic Adventure 2 Battle jigsaw puzzle, as well as a top-down version of Billy Hatcher and a 2D Shadow the Hedgehog platformer that some purport to be better than the oft-derided PlayStation 2/GameCube/Xbox game. And if their records are correct, some of these even came from Sonic Team themselves!

Thanks to BlueMaxima’s efforts, these freeze-framed moments in SEGA’s storied history can be properly documented and archived, rather than being lost forever. What’s more, with the creativity of the fan game community, maybe some of these concepts could even be updated by some aspiring talents for the Sonic Amateur Games Expo (SAGE).

Whatever your reason may be for checking it out, there are two main ways to go about it. If you live on some sort of server farm, then you may just prefer to go whole hog and download the 241GB (288GB extracted) Ultimate Bundle. Otherwise, you’ll want to try the Infinity version, which allows you to pick and choose the games you want to play, downloading them as you go.

To see everything they’ve got, you can check out their handy-dandy master list of games. If you don’t see an old favorite listed, the developers are taking requests, though there are some exceptions

[Kotaku, via USgamer]

David Oxford

What you see is what you get! Just a guy that loves adventure. And video games. And good food. And cats.

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