This article is for beginner Flash developers looking to create Flash games and animations. In hindsight, there are a few things that I would have loved to know when I started out, so this article will outline some tips to help out beginners!
TIP # 1: Create!
The best way to get good at making flash animations and games is to create lots of them. Make something! Make anything!!!
Creating lots of content is a great way to learn the ins and outs of Flash and will put you through invaluable learning experiences. Even if your animations and games are quick and simple, the process of creating them will give you the practice you need to get better.
Don't worry about how "good" your content will be when you are starting out. I used to spend hours thinking about what I was going to make and planning out all of the details. It is important to get into the habit of FINISHING your content, so try to avoid overcomplicating things; Keep it simple!
TIP # 2: Seek Help!
When you run into a problem, it's great to try and figure it out for yourself. However, if you really get stuck, don't be afraid to head to google and type in your problem. There are lots of great sites out there that have communities and tutorials dedicated to helping people who want to learn. Here are a few that I like to use:
Tip # 3: Get some tools!
Flash games and animations usually involve a mix of graphics, music, sound effects, and speech. Some of you will be fine with using your laptop trackpad and built-in microphone to create graphics and sound if you want to save some money, but it definitely makes things easier and more satisfying if you have some good tools.
First off, get the audio editing software, Audacity. Its free and compatible across multiple operating systems. It has a simple UI (user interface) and makes recording and editing sounds easy. If you are willing to spend money, you also may want to buy a decent USB microphone, a tablet, and some music software to facilitate the creation of audio and graphics.
Tip # 4: Go to Newgrounds!
Newgrounds.com is a great portal for Flash content. Visit it regularly to see what other people are making and be sure to get involved! You can submit your content on the site for it to be reviewed by other visitors of the site. This is a great way to get feedback and constructive criticism on your work. By the way, don't be discouraged if your content gets low ratings. Keep practicing and you will be seeing better ratings in no time!
Tip # 5: No one said it would be easy!
This piece of advice applies to pretty much everything. Don't expect to be an overnight success without putting in any work. Lots of people want to be a great flash developer. What will separate you from the rest is working hard and being passionate. It will take time to get good at animating and coding in actionscript. Don't be discouraged if you aren't pumping out 5 star games and cartoons after a month of practicing! If you keep things interesting, be creative, and create things that you are passionate about, it will be a lot easier to stick with it.
That's all for now. I hope this helps all of you beginners out there get started! :)