Game startup Gaikai streamed the high-end first-person shooter Bulletstorm to the Chrome web browser today in a demo at the Google I/O conference in San Francisco.

Normally, you have to play such games using a console and game disc or loaded on your PC. Or you could play it by using a streaming service such as Gaikai or OnLive. But today’s demo is interesting because it shows how high-end games can run in an ordinary Chrome web browser. This demo didn’t use Flash or Java, and it uses a gamepad and full playing screen.

As we noted in our Lara Croft on Chrome story, the open source Native Client technology has effectively turned Chrome into a new game platform, with hundreds of millions of users. Games streaming in Chrome can use a computer’s 3D graphics hardware. That makes it possible to run games with high-end, console-like graphics in a web browser. The benefits of running a game natively in Chrome is high performance, security, and the capability to port to the system easily. It is easy to port existing PC and console games to the Chrome native client partly because developers can use a variety of familiar programming tools. The Unity 3D game engine includes a check box that a developer can click in order to make a Unity-based game run on the Chrome browser.

The game was executed in the Native Client sandbox. Here’s the demo below.

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