Oh no -- it's definitely very different.
You run around, you smash things, you collect things, but you also do a lot of building, a lot of racing, and a LOT more customization than is present in the TT games. You're building up your character -- clothes, equipment, weapons, armors, special pieces that give abilities. You're competing -- there are foot races and car races -- you're building specialized space ships and hunting around for hidden treasure chests that hold rewards.
The TT games had very limited collectibles. You basically collected money and special golden bricks -- I don't think there was much else in the way of collectibles, and you couldn't buy much with your stuff -- just more characters. In LU, you can not only collect money (to buy clothes or equipment), but you can also buy pre-made models to go on your property, or you can buy race car parts, or rocket ship parts, or whatever -- and then there's the whole thing of just finding and collecting those parts on their own. There are flags to find, pets to find, special bricks to find, special blue bricks to find, achievements to find, challenges to complete, etc etc etc.
A BIG thing in LU is pets -- there are tons of unique pets in the game in every world, and finding, taming, and collecting them all is a large minigame that spans the entire set of worlds. You can name pets and have a whole menagerie. You have your own properties that you build up with things that you've collected in other worlds, etc.
The TT games didn't really have "collecting" the way LU does. LU lets you "collect" a VERY wide variety of things -- shoulder parrots are a fun one to collect because they're extremely rare and really fun to have flap around on your shoulder. There are also a wide variety of "elite" weapons that are very rare -- you can collect all manner of elite weapons -- not just swords and spears, but also silly things like pushbrooms or oars. It's impossible to collect everything in the game, and there's a lot of depth and opportunity for showcasing your collections -- this is VERY different from the "collect" aspect of TT.
There is also a story here with factions -- something that isn't present in the more linear TT games.
All that to say -- it's NOT "pretty much the same". I more just meant that their strongest appeal is with the LEGO branding, and if that wasn't enough to draw you into the TT games, then you'd be hard-pressed to come up with a justification for your monthly bill.
If you don't like subscriptions (like me) and are able to play with most of your friends locally, then I think I could have quite a bit of fun just sticking with the Travelers Tale games (Lego Star Wars, Lego Indiana Jones, etc).
The beta was a good time, and especially if I had remote friends that I wanted to play a family-friendly online game with, I'd definitely consider subscribing.
I wish I had time to show up at the rally with some MLK Jr quotes on signs...I think 'A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.' would be perfect.
If you don't have time to do that, perhaps you maybe might have time to educate yourself as to how much we actually spend on defense vs. social uplift?
For one -- we spend more on Social Security alone than we do on the entire Department of Defense -- not counting other social uplift programs such as welfare, foreign aid, national parks, environmental services, or whatever.
I guess I'm not sure I understand what you're railing against. Which countries in particular are you saying are approaching spiritual death?
You sound angry and ignorant.
Nothing is impossible.
The bottom line is that the video tag is not yet mature enough to imitate (much less exceed) the current user experience provided through Flash, so YouTube is not planning on moving, because to do so would be to provide an inferior user experience to their customers.
Given how several other companies have been weighing in on this issue (Scribd and Apple being to notable examples), I appreciated hearing YouTube's take on it.
According to the article, AJAX overlays don't work properly / consistently in full-screen, which many people like to use.
Sorry for being unclear. "Links" in the sense of linkable hot-spots that creators of YouTube content can add to their videos to provide contextual hotlinks to other videos, websites, etc. Sortof like "super captions / tags". I was assuming you'd seen these on YouTube videos lately -- I think they added this feature some time last year or so -- at least that's when I noticed it starting to show up.
So when I said "captions", I didn't mean "closed captioning" (that was covered more by "subtitles"), so much as these dynamic captions that can be added by the authors after the video is uploaded.
"I'm not aware enough of any problem a flash container for video provides for translations. Really? Translations of what?"
(sidenote: I didn't say that Flash containers provided problems for translations -- not sure how you got that?)
What I mean by "translations" is either alternate audio tracks, or multiple subtitling options.
If one can (as you say) include these alternate audio or captioning tracks in the video file itself, it certainly presents an inferior solution to Flash, where such content can both be added after-the-fact, and displayed in full-screen.
Re: giving a skewed perspective, I'm happy to let the reader decide if you were conveniently neglecting to mention these extra features that YouTube provides to content creators that are hurt (in addition to ads).
Besides, you act like ads are a bad thing? TANSSAAFL, and I'm not sure I'm ready to pay money to subscribe to YouTube -- I think I'd prefer the ads. Minor note: when someone has music playing in the background of their YouTube video, I kindof like knowing the author and the title of the song being provided for me by YouTube -- that's a nice and unobtrusive popup that I appreciate, and is a heckuva lot more convenient than digging through the comments trying to find someone who happened to know what it was.
I guess all I'm saying is that your original post made it sound like all we had to lose by YouTube moving to the <video> tag was ads, ads, and more ads. While that's partly true, I think it's also important to remember that YouTube has a very good user experience, and a lot of the little niceties (such as the small handful that I mentioned) would also be lost -- in addition to the ads that support the site.
Now you're repeating yourself, and I point you back to u17's comment. The question of Flash plugins is a totally separate problem decoupled from H264. Free software implementations of the <video> tag will not be able to handle H264 either.
You're confusing the issue by mixing two separate problems.
Funny that you conveniently forgot to mention subtitles, translations, captions, and links.
Nono, don't change it. Your argument sounds better when you spin and skew. You report, we decide.
I read Steve Fulton's article that you linked. The gist is that nobody has yet written support libraries for Canvas-based game development.
On top of the fact that there aren't support libraries, it's also that the core API doesn't support basic functionality needed by game developers (such as playing two copies of the same sound simultaneously -- I.E. gunshots or explosions).
My cousin. He and others in his position have far more time than money, which is why they stick to Free or otherwise free tools. Imagine a high school student on summer break whose school isn't on the list of schools that get a discount on Flash CS5. These people are likely to be the people who write the support libraries that Canvas currently lacks.
Then he might be one of the people who is interested in the free and open-source compiler that Adobe released several years back. FlashDevelop is one of the best free tools for doing Flash development, though there are many many others.
I developed several games in Flash before I ever paid a single dime to Adobe -- using only free and open-source tools.
The guys over at 8BitRocket posted an evaluation of some of what it takes to write an equivalent game in AS3 and HTML5. You may find it informative.
Staunch anti-Flash posters will sing the praises of HTML5 for games.
I would guess that they haven't actually tried to program in both of them.
If you can find an actual game developer who prefers HTML5 over Flash (based on their development experiences), then by all means please post a link. While they might exist, I've not yet met one, and I see far more who have tried HTML5... but ultimately stuck with Flash.
Building translators is good clean fun. -- T. Cheatham