Online games are one of the most addicting aspects of the Internet. Of those games, Flash games comprise a large number. While you can access and play them just fine while you are connected to the internet, what about when you don’t have an internet connection? What if the site hosting the games gets taken down, or the user deletes the game? Fortunately you can download these games to your computer for offline use, but going about it requires some tinkering with your web browser of choice.
To download Flash games with Firefox, first navigate to the webpage hosting the game. When the page loads, right-click anywhere on the page. Do not click on the game, only somewhere on the page. There will be a selection of options available to you. Click the option, “Page Info”, and a windows should pop up displaying different information. There will be three icons at the top of this new page: “General”, “Media”, and “Security”. Click the Media icon, and this will show you a listing of all the media exported on the page.
From here you need to scroll through the media until you find a greyed-out item that ends with the filetype “.swf”. This is the actual Flash object that represents the game on the website. Simply click the item and then click the “Save As” button. Firefox will then save the object to your computer. Navigate to the downloaded Flash object and open it in your browser. The Flash game will open in a new window.
Alternatively you can use the Tamperdata plugin for Firefox to capture the HTTP traffic that travels back and forth between your computer and the website. Open the Tamperdata menu and navigate to the site. You will see the entirety of the HTTP exchange with the webpage. The Flash object, being part of the web page, will show up in the Tamperdata menu, ending with the file extension “.swf”. Right click the link for the Flash object, and select “Open in Browser”. The flash object will immediately open in a new tab, and from here you can download it from the Firefox toolbar by clicking File, and then Save Page As in the drop-down menu.
Downloading Flash Games With Chrome
Downloading Flash games with Chrome is a little different than downloading games with Firefox. The steps for saving the Flash file is a little more involved this time around. From the page hosting the Flash file, right click the page and select “View Page Source”. A new window will pop up containing the raw HTML of the page. Hit the key combination CTRL-F to open the search bar, and type “.swf” into the field. After a little bit of searching you will find the HTML code that points to your Flash game. Right click on the link that ends in .swf, and select, “Save Link As”. This will pull the Flash object from the link and store it on your computer. From there all you have to do is open the saved .swf file and you can play the game offline.
Another way of acquiring the Flash object is through the developer interface that comes built-in to Chrome. Right-click the webpage and select “Inspect Element”. This will take you to the Developer Tools menu for the Chrome Browser. Navigate to the Network tab at the top of the menu, and refresh the page. Like Tamperdata, you will see all of the files and objects the webpage sends to your browser to render. If you scroll through the items, you will come across the flash file that contains the game you want to save. Double-click the file, and it will open in another tab, allowing you to save it off to your computer
Downloading Flash Games with Internet Explorer
Getting Flash games from the internet with Internet Explorer is similar getting them with Chrome. An alternate technique you can use, in case the formatting of the webpage does not allow for direct saving of the link from the HTML code, is to copy the link into the site’s URL. In order to do this, you take the .swf link from before, copy it, and replace the .html file within your URL bar with the .swf file link from the HTML source code. This should send you the Flash object directly, and from there you can just select the download option from the prompt.
Newer versions of Internet Explorer have a Developer menu that you can access by right-clicking the web-page and selecting “Inspecting Element”. The interface for Internet Explorer’s developer menu is, however, a little unintuitive. To find the network tab, you have to scroll down the icons on the left until you find an icon of a wireless router. Click the router, and click the green arrow at the top of the menu to begin capturing HTTP data. If you do not click the green arrow, the developer menu will not populate with HTTP objects when you refresh the page. After refreshing the page and allowing the network data to populate, you can make your search for your flash game easier by sorting the data via the Initiator tab. Click the Initiator tab twice, and you should see Flash objects near the top of the network data. Unfortunately IE does not allow you to click on the link, so you will have to copy it and paste it in your URL bar in a separate window to access the object.
Downloading Flash Games With Other Browsers
You can utilize the View Source option with browsers such as Opera and Safari, and it will work just fine. One method tested on the Opera browser is to right-click the webpage, select “Save As”, and save the complete web page to your computer. This will sometimes capture the Flash Object, and store it along with the other objects needed for the web page into a folder on your computer. You merely have to search for the already downloaded flash file, and open it with your preferred browser to play.
Now you can collect and play your favorite Flash games any time you want, even if you don’t have an internet connection.