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Installing Flint Particle System

In this tutorial, we will learn how to install and set the path to the Flint Particle System. Flint was developed by Richard Lord. This system makes creating special effects such as snow, smoke and fireworks a very easy task. Richard Lord has released Flint under the MIT License which means that the system is open source and we all owe Mr. Lord a big "Thank You".

One nice feature of Flink is the set of examples which can be found on the flintparticles.org website. Each effect has it own page with a working example, a short description and the source code. If you want to save time, you can download all the examples in one zip along with the system source code for Flash and Flex.

Our first step is to download the latest version (at this time it is 3.0.1). Flint can be downloaded in two forms, src files or swc files. We will be downloading the src source code files. After we decompress the zip, we will have a folder subdirectory (called a package) of .as ActionScript class files. We will place this new folder Flint_3_0_1_src in the Classes folder for FlashR CS5. Depending on your setup, Mac or Windows, here is the location of the Classes folder.

Hard Disk/Users/user/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Flash CS3/language/Configuration/Classes

Hard Disk\Documents and Settings\user\Local Settings\Application Data\Adobe\Flash CS5\language\Configuration\Classes

Open Finder on your Mac and click on the icon for your main hard drive (example Macintosh HD) and follow the path to the Classs folder. In the Classes folder you will see other folders such as FP7, FP8, etc. Copy and paste the Flint_3_0_1_src folder there.

Now that we have placed the source code folder in the correct location, we need to tell Flash exactly where to look for the folder by setting either the global or document-level classpath. We will be using this particle system for many effects, so let's set up the global classpath that can be shared by all Flash documents. Follow these steps.

  1. Start a new ActionScript 3 project
  2. Click Flash - Preferences
  3. From the Category menu, click ActionScript
  4. In the ActionScript dialog box, click the ActionScript 3.0 Settings button
  5. In the Source Path box, click the Browse to Path button
  6. Again follow the folder path to the flint_3_0_1_src folder and click Choose button
  7. Click OK to close the Preferences dialog boxes

Now we are ready to play with some of the examples.


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