Yesterday this news dropped.
I’m not a Unity user just yet (I’ve downloaded it and had a play around but that’s it) but this news has been used by many as an extra sign that it’s all over for Flash.
As some of you may know I’ve been learning Obj-c/iOS for about a year, and I’m in the middle of a big iOS project, I made this switch from Flash because that was were the wind was blowing, i’e towards mobile and mostly towards Apples devices. The funny thing is I keep being tempted to go back and make another Flash game project, why? because it’s just so easy! For me the biggest upside to using Flash has always been how you can use the Flash software to visualise your game, your assets (the library) and your code were pretty much in the same place and you could go and manipulate the assets on the stage directly. That’s why Flash was so popular as a platform, it spawned the whole designer/developer concept, someone who could have a foot in both camps. Flash Builder divided those camps again but Unity to some extent at least seems to be bringing them back together.
Adobe seems to be frozen in place, they don’t seem to want to back Flash 100%, but at the same time they seem unsure about jumping on the HTML5 bandwagon. They do have tech though which can spawn a whole new direction for them and allow them to compete with Unity if they wish, and that’s AIR. Let’s look at what Adobe already has in place…
- An established programming language (AS3) used by 100,000’s of developers.
- Integrated tool suite for developing assets.
- Technology that allows for smooth/fast running games on mobile (Stage3D)
Flash Pro as it currently stands seems a bit lost, it doesn’t seem to be one thing or another. However Adobe have a golden opportunity to be at the forefront of development again if they relaunch Flash as a 2D/3D editor for AIR and HTML5.
They have been dabbling with 3D tools in Flash for years, and recently seem to have taken an interest in C4D. C4D would seem a perfect acquisition for them to add to their suite of tools.
This would give developers…
- Flash Builder for AS3 Coding exporting to as many different formats as possible.
- Dreamweaver for HTML5 coding
- Flash as a 2D/3D editor for both of the above.
- 2D content from Photoshop/illustrator.
- 3D content from C4D or an Adobe version of C4D.
Will something like the above emerge, this year or the next? I suspect not. The more likely scenario is that Flash will come to an end and Unity will become the de-facto game development design tool for years to come.