Yatzy!

The project

We have eagerly followed the news of the new mobile OS of Mozilla right from the start, thus when our friends at iMind helped us to a Keon mobile, we immediately decided to develop a simple game app for it as an initiation.

We choose the dice game Yatzy, which was familiar to many of us and enjoyable alone as well, like solitaire.

Results

We finished the game in a matter of a few days. It is available on the Firefox market, playable in the browser, and its source code is available on Bitbucket.

How?

We have been interested in Firefox OS since the beginnings, because it requires no extra knowledge above trusted web technologies (HTML, CSS, Javascript) to develop apps for it. This was the promise and this we can confirm.

The app was developed with the help of a simple browser (not even Firefox, but Chrome). At certain points, I checked the result on my phone, but I hardly met an error.

When the game was playable in the browser, we added Firefox OS specific features—e.g. installability, vibration, orientation sensing—, which are (with but a few exceptions) simple Javascript API calls (either standardized or in the process of being standardized).

Finally, the app received its (almost) final look from trn - later, this had to be simplified a bit as the phone's browser handled shadows and tints with difficulty.

Summary

In our experience, app development for Firefox OS takes only a manifest file more compared to the development of an average mobile app. Naturally, if we want to have access to sensitive data (e.g. phone book), then we must meet slightly stricter requirements, but none of these is impossible—and, as always, the Mozilla Development Network provides a huge amount of help.

It is possible to develop mobile apps with web technologies for Android and iOS as well, but that takes an intermittent layer (PhoneGap, Titanium), and in my experience life can be problematic with those. In addition to the Firefox OS, Samsung has also opted for HTML/CSS/Javascript apps with its Tizen platform (which is still under construction), and personally, I'm happy about that.

Code repository

https://bitbucket.org/dyuri/yatzy-ffos/overview

Magyarul