Flash Today

[ LiB ]

Many people are not aware of this, but Flash has a powerful big brother. His name is Macromedia Director. Director is a fully integrated 3D programming and animation system which is also much more expensive. Usually bigger commercial corporations use this program. Even though this big guy has been around longer than Flash, Flash is far more popular and, in some ways, superior . Why? For reasons that you will learn firsthand very soon.

As a game development platform, there seems to be no limit to what Flash can do. There is one major complication though. The issue is this: Games require immediate feedback, and Flash is slow! There, I said it. If you have a fast computer, then you won't have to worry about this issue (only of course, if you're going to distribute your game). The truth is that most people don't have fast computers so this will be a major consideration.

You have to constantly keep Flash's lack of speed in mind when producing any type of project in it. There is nothing more annoying than awesome graphics and animation moving in stuttering slow motion!

The best thing about Flash is that it is a vector-art program. This means that everything is drawn on-the-fly , mathematically. (Yes, you can import images and modify them, but we'll go over that later.) What this all means is that, using lines and colors, you can create really complex scenes that would otherwise take megabytes to load. It's easy to stay within a reasonable size-limit in Flash and you should use this fact to your advantage.

Sound processing is wonderful in Flash. It accepts MP3 technology, and can even load sounds on-the-fly to help keep the source-file size small. The only drawback is that your file size will be huge if you embed your sounds in your Flash movie. If you are developing for the Web, keep in mind that no one likes to wait . If, after optimizing your movie, you end up with a 3MB file, you can load smaller games to entertain the user while he or she is downloading the huge file. Besides awesome scripted animations and presentations in games, Flash can also communicate with the server through certain protocols. Don't get alarmed by the word protocol . All it means is that applications have a standard to communicate over the Internet. Flash has easily adapted to these protocols and can communicate with XML, Macromedia's Communications server, and even through CGI (Common Gateway Interface), which in turn communicates with other scripts on the server (most commonly those written in Perl).

I know that most of this is probably a foreign language to you right now, but it will fall into place pretty soon. To keep up with the technology, I would suggest using Flash for a certain amount of time each day. Your curiosity and skill will grow if you spend enough time with the program.

Of course it all starts with inspiration. What inspires you?

[ LiB ]

Game Development with ActionScript
Game Development with ActionScript
ISBN: 1592001106
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2004
Pages: 162
Authors: Lewis Moronta

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