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How to make a simple Flash game?

18 Juli 2006
I often receive emails from people asking "Hello, could you tell me where I should start to make a Flash game?".

This is not an easy answer. I will give in this article some interesting links to start with and go deeper too. Don't forget that Flash is just a tool. This article focuses on the technical aspect of the game developement but never forget that a game has many other aspects : game and level design, addictive game mechanics, graphics, and above all, it must be fun to play and innovative.

First of all you must install Flash Pro

Install Macromedia Flash Pro on your computer. The "Try and buy" license allows to try it for 30 days.

A good way to start with is to buy a book. But you can learn Flash and ActionScript 2 (the scripting language of Flash 8) only by surfing around the net.

Here are some good tutorials to start with :

An excellent tutorial in 9 stages. You will learn to make a simple shoot them up game in 9 steps, each one adding a new functionnality to the game.

A nice selection of animated tutorials. Most of them use Flash MX 2004, which is the former release of Flash but the interface is very similar to Flash 8. These tutorials will teach you the basics of Flash and some of them show you how to build a little game.

Breakout tutorial. Very well illustrated tutorial to make a cute breakout game.

First, Second, Third and Fourth. 4 tutorials from most easy to most difficult. These ones are not illustrated but you will learn to make a side scrolling game step by step.

After these simple tutorials for beginners, you can go further with the following links :

The TonyPa tile based games tutorials. Those tutorials are famous and very instructive, you will learn a lot about Flash games and also about developing tile based games in general.

Flashkit game board. A place where most of the flash game developers around the world can help each other.

Starting with the upcoming ActionScript 3, the new script language of the upcoming Flash Pro 9

Plenty of other good places around the net

Use search engines to find them. Examples of good requests : flash game tutorial, make a simple flash game etc... Don't hesitate to browse all the pages of the search results to find the one that will match your needs.

Have fun

Once you made your first flash game, you can understand this enjoyable movie, called "Animator vs Animation", created by 17 years old Alan Becker.

Players for your game

Don't hesitate to submit your games on the upload section of, many players will play it an give you comments and feedback to improve your skills.
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