Game Development Reference
Organizing layers and the timeline
If you look at the bottom of the workspace you'll see the timeline (if it isn't visible, select Window °
Timeline .) The timeline is most commonly used for animation (I'll be discussing that function in some
detail a bit later in the topic), but it's also used to create drawing layers as in Photoshop or other
graphic design software. Using layers allows you to create drawings or graphics on different layers, and
then arrange those layers so that graphics sit above or below other graphics.
Look at the bottom of the Flash workspace, just below the stage, and you'll see something that looks
much like Figure 2-16.
Figure 2-16. StartPage's timeline
Layer 1 is the current layer on which you've made your drawing. To the right of it, just below the num-
ber 1 and with the red line running though it, is a black dot known as a keyframe . Black keyframes
tell you that that frame has some graphics on it. In this case, it's the blue background rectangle that
you've just drawn. The red rectangle, which is highlighting frame 1, is known as the playhead (some-
times referred to as the scrubber ). The playhead is used to navigate between frames.
To help you stay organized, create two more layers: one for the foreground drawings and one for the
1. Click the New Layer button on the bottom-left corner of the timeline to create two new layers,
as shown in Figure 2-17. Notice that the keyframes of these layers are empty circles, indicating
that they don't contain any graphics.
Figure 2-17. Create two new layers.