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Scaleform

posted Apr 10, 2012, 3:07 PM by Mavrik Games
For the last few weeks I've been researching the Scaleform UI system. Mostly, I've been trying to figure out a good way of doing it without using Flash Professional, since I don't feel like forking out seven hundred dollars just to make my UI's. I tried Vectorian Giotto, but was disappointed to find that it only supports Actionscript 2.0 and Flash 8. Given my past experience with Actionscript 3.0, I just can't stomach trying to use AS2.

Next up was FlashDevelop, which is a very handy little IDE. It's basically a free version of FlashBuilder, which I've used extensively in my professional career. I played with FD for a while, but I couldn't get UDK to recognize anything I was creating. The SWF files I was compiling played just fine when I launched them, but I couldn't get them to play in UDK. I don't know for sure, but it seems that Scaleform doesn't support MXML, which is the main method of creating content in FlashBuilder/FlashDevelop.

Since creating everything through Actionscript would be kind of a nightmare (not to mention, a little slow at runtime), I decided to give SWF Quicker a try. I really was hoping for a free solution, but the price of SWF Quicker is a fraction of Flash Professional, so I thought I could handle it. SWF Quicker seemed to work just fine until I tried creating some custom classes (namely a button class) so that I wouldn't have to keep repeating all my code, then it started crashing. I played with the symbol linkage for hours with very little luck.

Although I'm very hesitant to purchase such buggy software, SWF Quicker was the only one that gave me any results at all, so I might be stuck with it. I'm going to have to overcome my discomfort at placing all my code on the timeline too, since I can't link anything to a class. I guess it's time to decide what leaves a worse taste in my mouth: Vectorian Giotto with AS2 or buggy SWF Quicker with all my code on the timeline. :(
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