During the recent Apple vs. Flash controversy, a lot of people have criticized Apple’s preference of HTML5 claiming that it’s only real strength is video and that it’s not really a viable platform right now for web-based games. Today iPhone publisher Appular has put those critics in their place, releasing a web-based demo for their iPhone game Hand of Greed using HTML5 that runs perfectly on the iPhone.

Players wishing to experience the HTML5 Hand of Greed demo first hand can visit appular.com/webapp on their iPhone’s Safari browser. Players will be “install” the demo by choosing the “add to home screen” option. Once there, players can load the game and experience 3 levels of Hand of Greed running as smoothly as they do in their native app.

Appular’s founder Brian Akaka believes that web apps like this Hand of Greed demo could be the future of app discovery and promotion. “We have already begun working with Admob to incorporate this web app within their ads, and are eager to do the same with Medialets and Apple’s upcoming iAd network as well. Creating rich media ads like this will allow unparalleled opportunities for consumers to try out games without having to install a new app. Looking forward, we’re excited to work with developers on using this technology to revolutionize app discovery.”

Whether or not this becomes the cornerstone of in-app advertising going forward is yet to be seen. That being said, one thing is certain; HTML5 appears to be just as capable as Adobe’s Flash at running games. Don’t be surprised if the mobile market sees a big surge in free web-based gaming in the near future.