Adobe just released an update to Flash Professional CC and there are some nice additions.
Sound is now supported within WebGL documents too. You can import audio files and embed them directly within the timeline. Alternatively you can play audio at runtime by importing audio files into your library and assigning linkage IDs to each.
Finally, some optimisations have been made to ensure that your content publishes faster than before.
If you’d like to know more about Flash’s WebGL support then check out my tutorial: An Introduction to Flash’s WebGL Runtime API.
Intel x86 Support for AIR for Android
Good news for any AIR developers who target Android devices. Flash Professional now supports packaging of AIR applications for Intel x86 based devices. This was obviously a major blocker for many AIR developers, and while the AIR SDK itself had been updated to support Intel x86 devices a while back, Flash Professional was still using an older version. So it’s certainly good to see Flash Professional targeting a newer version of the AIR SDK.
Custom Brush Support
The previous release saw the introduction of variable width strokes. This time it’s the Brushes tool that’s had a makeover. You can now create new brush types and customise them from the Properties Inspector. The shape, angle, and flatness of your brush’s nib can be edited along with the smoothness of the lines you draw with it. It’s a welcome addition that’s sure to go down well with illustrators.
Animation Guide Support
A few interesting updates have been introduced to motion guide layers. You can now draw a guide path using a variable width stroke, with the stroke’s width being used to control the scale factor of the clip attached to the guide path. You can also do the same by creating a guide path consisting of multiple connected uniform strokes of different sizes.
It’s also possible to control the colour and alpha transparency of your objects in a similar manner. Simply draw multiple connected lines and curves of different colour and alpha values. As your shape tweens over each part of your guide layer, its colour will change to reflect that of the guide path.
Import SWF Files
Back by popular demand is the ability to import SWF files into your library. It’s once again possible to bring assets from a published SWF into your FLA and work with them in a primitive manner within your timeline.
Custom Platform Support
The October update introduces probably the most significant new feature to come to Flash in quite some time. Custom Platform Support allows third-parties to create their own document types for Flash Professional that can then publish to platforms that aren’t native to Flash. Plugins are written using a C++ API that provides access to Flash documents in the form of a DOM.
Basically these plugins will enable designers to create great content in Flash that can then easily be exported to other target platforms such as Unity, Marmalade, Cocos2d, Starling etc. As an excellent example of what can be done, take a look at the recently released GAF Publisher, which exports Flash content to the GAF animation format.
I’m really looking forward to seeing what plugins become available over time.
Anyway, enjoy tinkering with the latest Flash Professional release, and I’m certainly looking forward to the next update.