Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Figure 6.1 The new XML-based
file structure of Flash CS5+.
even more importantly, Flash will now let you save the project in an
uncompressed format. This means that instead of an FLA, you now
have a folder with raw assets and the XML information file. Now
when you use a version control system, only those elements that
have changed will be updated. For example, if you only change the
part of it that changed will be versioned. Another example would be
when a developer receives an updated asset, such as a replacement
sound file or bitmap. They can simply replace the file, republish the
SWF, and check in the new file. This is a huge boon for projects with
multiple developers and/or artists who work on the same files. Two
people could theoretically work on the same project file, updating
different parts of it, and a version control system would be able to
merge their changes together (assuming there were no conflicts).
If you save a CS4 FLA as an uncompressed XFL in CS5, you don
t get an
exposed folder of assets. Instead, because the assets were already con-
verted to the own binary format of Flash, you get a folder of indistinguish-
able .dat files. This can be frustrating to discover if you
re looking to
update old files. If you plan to make more than minor edits to an older
file, it might be worth taking the time to recreate it in a
CS5 file so
that you can take full advantage of the format.
A Few Words about Organization
If you
ve worked in Flash for a very long time, you
ve probably had
the opportunity to open someone else
s Flash file from time to
time. I
ve rarely found two developers who organize their library
the same way. For a while, a popular convention was to sort library
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