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Part IV: Transforming Graphics and Sound > Controlling the Movie Clip

Chapter 7. Controlling the Movie Clip

The movie clip is a powerful object. Flash lets you control the way movie clips look and behave. Movie-clip properties such as position, scale, rotation, transparency, color, and even instance name can all be changed with ActionScript. As a result, you can create arcade-style interactivity with characters changing in response to viewer input or conditions. Imagine a game of Tetris created entirely in Flash. Each geometric shape could be a movie clip, and the viewer would control its rotation and position with the keyboard. A game of Asteroids could feature an alien ship that moves in response to the viewer's ship. This kind of animation isn't based on tweens you create while authoring the Flash movie. Rather, this is dynamic animation that is essentially "created" during playback. Learning to control movie-clip properties is the first step in understanding how to animate entirely with ActionScript.

Flash also lets viewers move the movie clip directly with drag-and-drop actions. Use draggable movie clips to create puzzles in which the viewer can actually pick up the pieces and put them in their correct places, or develop a more immersive online shopping experience in which the viewer can grab merchandise and drop it into a shopping cart. You'll learn how to create drag-and-drop movie clips, and create methods to detect where they are dropped on the Stage, as well as control collisions and overlaps with other movie clips. Then you'll deal with duplicating multiple movie clips and even placing movie clips from the Library onto the Stage during playback.

Finally, you'll see how the movie clip lets you customize the pointer. Rather than using the generic arrow or pointing finger, you can create pointers that complement your unique content. For example, build a scope and crosshairs for a hunting game, or a skeletal hand to guide the viewer through a haunted house.


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