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Author: David Doull | Website: http://www.artifactinteractive.com.au

Step 2: Getting the enemies moving

Ok, we have created our enemy movie clip and have set up its start position, now lets get it moving.

If you don't have it still open, open up the actions window for the enemy movie clip.

Underneath the code from the previous step type the following code for the enemies enterFrame clip event:

onClipEvent (enterFrame) {

  if (_root.spaceship.scrollStart){
  } else {

  if (this._x<-10) {


This code does two things; it moves the enemy across the stage by reducing its x-coordinate and it resets the enemy if it has moved off the left edge of the stage.

The first if statement checks to see if our variable scrollStart is true?
If it is true then the enemy ships x-coordinate is decreased by enemySpeed+_root.mainGround.groundSpeed otherwise it is decreased by just enemySpeed. So if the ground isn't scrolling the enemy will be moved left by the random number assigned to enemySpeed. If the ground is scrolling the enemy's x-coordinate will be decreased by enemySpeed plus the speed at which the ground is scrolling. We need to do this to ensure the movement looks realistic. If the ground started scrolling and the enemy just kept moving at the same speed it wouldn't look right (try it out if you are not convinced).

The second if statement checks to see if the enemy movie clip has moved off the left of the stage (i.e.: it's x-coordinate is less
than -10). If this is true then the reset function is called. The reset function will reposition the movie clip on the right of the stage and assign a new random speed and y-coordinate.

If you test your flash file you should now have a enemy spaceship moving across the stage and resetting itself after it moves off the left side of the stage.

More enemies

But one enemy isn't going to be a very challenging game, so lets use duplicateMovieClip to add some more enemies. We will put the code to duplicate the enemy in a new layer on the main timeline.

Control Layer

Create a new layer on the main timeline and call it control. Click on the first frame of the control layer and open up the actions window (either Window > Actions or right-click and pick actions).

Type the following code in the actions window.

for (i=2; i<=numEnemy; i++){
	enemy1.duplicateMovieClip( "enemy"+i, i+100 );


The first line creates a new variable called numEnemy and sets it to 3. This variable will be the number of enemies on the stage at any one point in time, if you want to make the game harder just try increasing this number.

The next three lines are a for loop. The loop duplicates the enemy1 movie clip.

» Level Intermediate

Added: 2001-05-04
Rating: 9 Votes: 517
(10 being the highest)
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