What an amazing 2007!

Phlash5

Let’s face it, 2007 was pretty spectacular, in fact it was SO spectacular that it’s taken me most of January to write it all down…

ExtremePamplona title page

We flew straight into ’07 with a massive 9 level platform game, called Extreme Pamplona. It was so big, it took 15 people 2 months to make it, we even had to move into new offices to accommodate everyone!

Then we found out that we had come best in class in 3 separate IMA awards for the Plug-in Media website.

In February I re-launched our local Flash user group as FlashBrighton and we rather insanely increased our meetings to one a week!

In April, we were nominated for a Webby!

A trip for Boston for myself and Plug-in’s Creative Director Dominic Minns followed in May. We were invited to the New England Institute of Art to explain to an enthusiastic group of people exactly how we make games.
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Seamlessly looping video in Flash

How insane is it that there’s no way to seamlessly loop video in Flash? Very insane! That’s how!!!

Here’s my requirement : I have a lot of prerendered 3D animations that need to loop. Spinning objects and stuff. So I’ve converted them to FLV and I’m loading them in with that really fiddly NetStream and NetConnection stuff. And they need to just quietly spin away in the background not taking up too much processor time.

So ideally in old-school programming days, we’d have a nice image sequence sitting in our timeline that just animates away. But of course, they make the swfs HUGE.

If only there was a way of combining the small filesize of flvs along with the speed of rendering of image sequences… Well now there is!

After a good day or so of tearing my hair out, I now present to you… the VideoMovieClip! It’s just like a normal movieclip except it’s made out of an flv. So you can gotoAndPlay, nextFrame, stop, play just as though it was a movieclip!

How awesome is that!?? Except I haven’t quite got it working.

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Meet the new Papervision3D team member – me!

Wow what an honour to be asked to join the development team for probably the most exciting open-source project in the history of Flash!

I’m not exactly sure what I’ll be doing yet, I’ve been speaking to Carlos, Ralph and John about various ideas that I have.

Ideas such as 3D particle systems, dynamically rendered seamless 3D textures from noise algorithms, mode7 planes, endless starfield particle systems, fog, depth of field blur, and optimisations specifically relating to game development.

But it’s all early days yet, so I’ll be making sure I’m in sync with the others before I start hacking around! Erm I mean serious programming work!

So I’d like to publicly thank the team for asking me to join!

The only question is how I’ll find the extra few days in the week for all of this crazy work… 😉