Join Lee Brimelow for an in-depth discussion in this video Building 3D animation in Flash CS4, part of Flash Player 10 New Features.
So one of the most important things about the new 3D support in Flash Player 10 is that it's easy to use, particularly when you're using Flash CS4. So designers can now take advantage of 3D without having to know any ActionScript coding. So in the last video, I actually showed you a couple of the 3D tools. In this video, I'm going to show you how you would do simple 3D animation inside of Flash CS4. So go ahead and open up the 3D_ animation.fla file, and this is just a simple movie.
I have a movie clip of my cat Bea here on the stage and now we're just going to create some simple 3D animation. So I'm going to grab the 3D Translation tool and I'm just going to move this closer to us on the Z-axis like that. Now I'm going to get the 3D Rotation tool and I'll just manipulate this a little bit in 3D space, maybe something like that. Now, inside of Flash CS4, the whole way in which we do animation on the timeline has changed.
All we have to do now is to right-click on an object and say Create Motion Tween. So this will actually put down a seconds worth of frames here in the timeline, and everything is automatically keyframed for us. So now at frame 30, I can start manipulating this. So I'm going to get the Translation tool again, and I'm going to push it away from us in 3D space, like that. Let me grab the 3D Rotation tool again. Just change some of these properties, again, just so you can see how you would actually animate in 3D.
Now we're going to hit Enter, we can see that clip is now animating in 3D. Let's give it a little more rotation, so you can kind of see it better. We can see we have a nice, smooth effect. Now, this 3D support in Flash Player 10 has actually built natively inside of the Flash Player. So this isn't an ActionScript library, like you would use if you're using Papervision3D. This is actually written in C++ and is native inside of the Flash Player.
So 3D animation is just that simple. It's just like doing 2D animation. You create keyframes by manipulating the object, and we can see we can easily animate. I'm going to undo just so we get back to our initial state of our clip here. So one thing that you may want to do is to actually create something where something rotates 360 degrees. Well, there are some important things you need to keep in mind if you want to create something like that in Flash CS4. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to create a motion tween again on this object.
Now, let's say I want this to rotate 360 degrees. So I can get the Rotation tool on the Y- axis and I can just start moving it around. We can see there it is at 180. I'm going to keep going until it gets to 360. So now if I actually look at that animation, we can see it's barely moving at all. That's because Flash is actually trying to be a little too smart here. It's essentially saying Hey! You started at this position. Even though you went around 360 degrees, you end up at almost the same position.
So all I'm going to do is move that little bit that's different. Well, that's obviously not what we want here. That's where using the Motion Editor actually comes into play. So all I'm going to do is to select this layer and open up the Motion Editor. Again, this allows you to have a lot more fine-tuned control over your animations. So I can increase the number of frames I can see here, because I want to see my entire animation. Here you can see the Rotation Y property. If I click on that, it actually expands it.
We can see why we're not getting very much rotation at all. It's only going from 0 degrees to -2 degrees. So what we actually want to do is to just come in here and put 360 degrees directly into this text input. Now, you can see our animation is actually moving all the way around 360 degrees. So if I test that, we can see we now have a nice, smooth 3D rotation. So while the Motion Editor is a great tool for doing all types of animation inside of Flash CS4, it's particularly useful and required if we're going to be doing a lot of 3D animation.
So that's the basics of how to do basic 3D animation in Flash CS4.
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