Flash CS4 and its Capabilities. Part 2: the Future of 3D in Flash Player
Couple of days ago we have started a preliminary analysis of Flash CS4 and from the first part of the Flash CS4 publication it became obvious that there’s too much that we would like to say. That’s why here we are with a second part – enjoy and feel free to leave your opinion about this in the comments.
– Inverse kinematics
Now this is a real treasure for the Flash animation fans! Now Flash CS4 allows so-called “bones” – just like in 3D applications. This means that you can apply a skeleton to the objects and they instantly become interconnected. Therefore when you animate one element the rest of the skeleton will be animated with it:
You may see it all in action at the proper page of the Flash player 10 developers.
In fact Astro (code name of the new Flash player 10) really does provide many new capabilities. They will be especially obvious for ActionScript 3 developers that will operate with a lot more of the new features – they are all available at the developers’ features page.
Is there any future for modern 3D engines and is it worth it to learn ActionScript that you need for using PaperVision 3D, Away 3D or Sandy 3D if in a month or two there will be Flash CS4 which will enable you to produce a really interactive 3D animation without knowing ActionScript? Especially if the productivity of such animation will be higher?
It may sound weird for those who are not familiar with programming – yes, it is still worth it. Yes, Adobe’s developers have provided 3D features and you will be able to rotate the objects in a new perspective. But what about the concept of camera and all of its properties? It is absolutely essential for the whole idea of 3D. A huge number of features are impossible without camera and its motion through the space. The same thing is about the 3D primitives – plane, cube, sphere etc. And we would all still want to import the 3D models from the external editors, to work with shaders, lighting sources and object’s physical properties. All of that is now available in Flash 3D frameworks with the only disadvantage of low productivity – which I am sure will be partially fixed soon.