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Game Development

HTML5 vs Unity 3D Game: Pros and Cons for Game Development

written by Nitin Garg | Jan 24, 2023
Html5 vs Unity 3d

The global video game industry was valued at $195.6 billion in the year 2021. It is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world. Even in the gaming industry, mobile gaming is one of the fastest-growing segments. This number is only growing to rise in the upcoming years. As gaming as an activity is becoming more popular, video game development is receiving unprecedented traction. Entrepreneurs are leveraging the power of Unity game development and HTML5 mobile game development to invest in this lucrative industry to generate maximum revenue. 

Game development heavily relies on technologies like game engines that provide a strong base on which the games can be constructed. Unity 3D and HTML5 are two of the most popular game engines used by game developers all across the globe. These two game engines are driving the gaming industry by providing developers with the ability to develop interactive 2D and 3D games without any hassle. 

However, the debate of HTML5 vs Unity 3D is never-ending. Both game engines excel in their respective fields. While HTML5 is the best engine for developing cross-platform browser-based games, Unity 3D development is the undisputed champion of developing high-end immersive mobile gaming experiences.

Image Source: grand view reasearch

In this blog, we will highlight the pros and cons of both game engines and also shed some light on which game engine is the optimum choice for game developers.

What is Unity 3D?

Unity 3D is a game engine that uses the C# programming language to develop 2D, 3D, and VR/AR games for mobiles and PC. Developed by Unity Technologies, the first version of Unity, known as Unity 1.0 was launched in June 2005. Ever since its inception, Unity has been dominating the game development industry and is now one of the most preferred game engines for unity mobile game development. 

Although the game engine is not suitable for amateur developers, there are various manuals and video tutorials on the internet that can help Unity developers to get familiar with the engine. 

With the rise of mobile gaming, Unity mobile game development reached new heights. Let’s take a look at some statistics and facts about the Unity 3D development game engine.

  • Games created with Unity 3D registered a whopping 5 billion downloads in Q3 of 2016. 
  • 34% of top-rated games are built with Unity. 
  • Unity has a strong clientele with some renowned global brands like Microsoft, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, and Coca-Cola. 
  • It is a global company with reach in various markets including Canada, China, Korea, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Germany. 
  • 90% of Samsung VR games and 53% of Oculus Rift games were also developed by Unity. 

By now you must have understood the potential of the Unity game engine and why it is one of the most preferred choices for Unity game developers around the world. Catering to big global brands like EA, Ubisoft, and Coca-Cola speaks volumes about the competency of the Unity Game Engine. 

What is HTML5?

HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language and it is a programming language that is used for developing content for the World Wide Web. Compared to the previous versions of HTML, HTML5 is adept at creating cross-platform games that can be accessed on any platform using web browsers. Before HTML5, Flash was the most used technology to create web content. However, it offered limited functionality as it heavily relied on plug-ins to function efficiently. 

Today, HTML5 is the primary language for creating web-based content. It doesn’t require any additional plug-ins and you can use HTML5 3D Game Development to create content like animation, music, movies and even complex browser-based applications.

HTML5 is an open-source software which means that HTML5 developers don’t need to pay any royalties for developing cross-platform browser apps. Launched in 2014, it is now the most-used programming language for web browsers. When used alongside CSS and WebGL, HTML5 can be used to create interactive complex games that have the potential to rival many AAA mobile games. Let’s take a look at various statistics and facts about HTML5.

  • HTML5 has become more popular with the rise of cloud gaming. 
  • The market size for HTML5 games is currently estimated to be $2.1 billion. 
  • Uses a single front-end code that facilitates development across multiple devices and platforms.
  • Supports audio, video, typography, social content, and sharing. 
  • Games are updated in real-time and don’t require manual updating from the users’ end. 

HTML5 vs Unity 3D: Which is Better for Game Development? 

When it comes to which is the better option, we will have to compare them across the stages of game development. This will provide you with a clear view of which technology serves your purpose and fulfills your requirements. The game development process is essentially divided into three parts-

  • Pre-production
  • Game Production
  • Post Production
HTML5 vs Unity 3D: Which is Better for Game Development

Let’s see which game engine fares well across the 3 stages of the game development process

Pre-Production

Various aspects of game development are determined in this stage. Game planning, type of game, developing a game design document(GDD), and developing a wireframe fall under the pre-production stage. 

HTML5: Pros

  • If you are a web developer, HTML5 is one of the easiest game engines to set up. 
  • No IDE or Local code setup is required. 
  • Easy-to-use Syntax
  • Open-source Game Engine

HTML5: Cons

  • It can be quite hard to set up for amateur developers.
  • Developers require a local server to set up and develop HTML5 games. 
  • Non existent old browser support
  • Licensing Cost
  • Developers are required to choose a framework for HTML5 mobile game development. The plethora of options available makes it an arduous task.

Read More:- Multiplayer Mobile Game Development Cost

Unity: Pros

  • One-stop solution for developing 2D platformers as well as 3D AAA titles. 
  • Fast and reliable game development
  • Uses JavaScript and C# for scripting
  • Resources can be imported quickly and without any hassle.
  • Supports all major audio, video, image, and text formats

Unity: Cons

  • Not an open-source game engine and is controlled by Unity Technologies
  • Difficult to develop cross-platform games. 
  • No Support for HTML WebGL
  • Complicated to use and not suitable for amateur developers

Game Production

This is the longest and most important stage of game development. Developing all essential game aspects like the storyline, characters, environment, NPCs, and game levels is completed in the production stage. 

HTML5: Pros

  • Easy Cross-platform game development.
  • HTML5 Mobile game development is suitable for hypercasual games
  • Cost-effective development solutions
  • Multimedia support
  • Since it is based on JavaScript, it is fairly easy to use. 
  • HTML5 3D game development supports cross-platform development without changing the code.
  • Supports all major browsers like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, etc. 

HTML5: Cons

  • Not suitable for complex games
  • Doesn’t offer an extensive library in terms of game development
  • Limited tool integration
  • The plethora of frameworks makes choosing the most suitable one a confusing task. 
  • Client-side rendering
  • Different video support for different browsers. 

Read More:- How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Game App Developer?

Unity: Pros

  • Develop a variety of games swiftly and efficiently
  • Suitable for developing complex games with different narratives
  • Useful features like built-in physics, component building, and preview debugging
  • Multiple game libraries for easier development
  • 2D and 3D support
  • Powerful coding capabilities with C#
  • Diverse community

Unity: Cons

  • A strict game development process doesn’t offer flexibility. 
  • Premium features are not available to free users and they are quite costly for an average developer.
  • Good knowledge of C# is required if you want to create games with Unity
  • A complex interface is not suitable for amateur developers. 
  • Developing games with Unity 3D is generally quite expensive. 

Post-Production

After the game is launched, game developers still have to take care of various aspects of the game development process. Providing customer support, working on potential bugs and glitches, and creating downloadable content(DLCs) are required after the game is released. 

HTML5: Pros

  • Web-based games can be published quite easily. 
  • HTML5 doesn’t require plug-ins so these games are suitable for web browsers and mobile devices. 
  • Games have multi-platform support
  • Improved security features
  • Requires Less maintenance
  • Modern User Experience

HTML5: Cons

  • Offline publishing with HTML5 requires a great deal of effort.
  • Responsiveness issues across a wide range of devices. 
  • Does not offer a one-click publishing option
  • JavaScript lacks features necessary for an immersive gaming experience

Unity: Pros

  • It provides a one-click publishing feature. 
  • Unity supports all major platforms like Web, mobile, PC, and console game development. 
  • A robust architecture is efficient on any platform. 
  • The implementation of 3D surround audio is excellent and easy to use. 

Unity: Cons

  • It is expensive to publish the game on multiple platforms
  • Lack of support in web browsers and mobile browsers. 
  • Licensing Issues
  • The lack of source code makes it difficult to find and resolve performance issues
  • Media Licensing Cost

Read More:- Everything about Why to Build Your Own Web 3.0 Metaverse

Top Games Built Using Unity Game Development Engine

The competency of the game engine can be easily determined by the final output. It is only logical to look at the top games that were developed using the Unity game development Engine. Let’s take a look. 

Top unity games
GameInstallsRevenue
Cross Road100 million+$10 million(since launch)
Hitman: Sniper10 million+$50,000(monthly)
ShadowGun: Dead Zone10 million+$5,000(monthly)
Alto’s Adventure10 million+$20,000( monthly)
Hearthstone10 million+$700 million(since launch)
Mobius: Final Fantasy1 million+$50,000(monthly)
Reigns500,000+$20,000(monthly)
Monument Valley II3 million+$40,000(monthly)
Axie Infinity8 million+$190 million(since launch)

Top Games Built Using HTML5 Mobile Game Development

Let’s take a look at the top browser games created using HTML5 mobile game development.

  • Akinator
  • Slither.io
  • 2048
  • Pocket Island
  • Pixel Defense
  • Dark Orbit Reloaded
  • Mars Tomorrow
  • Armor Valor
  • Starborne
  • Prosperous Universe

Final Words

As for which game engine is better in terms of game development, the answer is both. It all depends on your preference and project requirements. If you are developing a simple hypercasual game with minimal gameplay, HTML5 is the optimum choice. However, if you want to create a complex and extensive game with high-end graphics, the Unity game development engine would be more fruitful. Both technologies have their own merits and demerits. If you are still doubtful about which game engine to choose for your game development, you can consult BR Softech.

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Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

Q. Can I hire dedicated HTML5 game app developers?

Yes, if you want to hire HTML5 game app developers, you can contact a game development company that provides developers on a contractual basis. However, keep in mind that the cost of these developers differs from region to region.

Q. Can I use HTML5 3D game development to build AAA games?

While HTML5 can be used to develop a variety of games, it is not suitable for developing complex and graphics-intensive games. If you want to develop AAA games, you will have an easier time with the Unity game development engine.

Q. What are the best Unity 3D online games?

We have provided a list of top Unity games in the blog. Some popular games developed using Unity are Alto’s Adventure, Hearthstone, and Axie Infinity

Nitin Garg

I am Nitin Garg Founder of BR Softech PVT LTD - an Award-winning, app, web & game development company. We are armed with 180+ geeks & 2753 clients worldwide, I have driven by the spirit of entrepreneurship and dream to build a billion-dollar-company.

About Us

BR Softech Pvt. Ltd. excels in providing cost-effective IT Solutions. Established in August 2012 with over 10+ years of rich experience. An Apex rated IT serving company around the world. Our team of innovative and creative designers deals in web designing, and mobile game/software development intending to deliver outstanding digital outcomes.

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