I got this effect from a very good French Flasher. I found
the code on his site,
flasheur.com , broke it down, and improved it a little
bit, all this just for you.
You'll find that in this tutorial, I also took the code from
Random motion tutorial, that I use the
swapDepths and duplication functions, and a lot of
So that's not an easy tutorial, and you'd better check the
other tutorials before attempting this one.
look at the effect:
[ see the bacteria melt? ]
You can grab an incomplete source to get you started by
The Main Idea
If you went through the random motion tutorial, that part
shouldn't be a problem any more. The tricky part is that
thing when the bacteria seem to melt one into each other.
What we need to do is separate the outline of the bacteria
from the fill. We'll put the fill on a high level, and the
outline on a low level, so that the outlines can never get
on top of the fills. You didn't get that ? That's normal.
When you open the .fla, you'll see 4 layers : top,
circle, shadow and background.
On the top layer, there's a blue shape. This movie
clip is equivalent to a mask, since it will hide everything
under it. It is called top in the library.
On the circle layer there's a blue circle, a movie
clip called circle in the library.
On the shadow layer, you'll find a shadow, a movie
clip called shadow in the library.
On the background layer, there is a background.
You can notice that the outline and the fill of the bacteria
are two separate movie clips on two separate layers.
We'll need to give instance names to our objects. Give the
instance name circle to the circle, top to the
top, and shadow to the shadow. If you don't know how
to do that, check
Now, what we want is that the bacteria move randomly. We
need to put Supra's random motion code to the circle, and
make so that the outline follows somehow the fill.
We also need to duplicate our bacterium, so that there are
more than one on the scene
First things first : random motion.
The motion function we'll use is quite similar to Supra's.
It's a little bit different in the way that the motion is
not steady, but slows down as the clips gets close to the
Create a new layer that you'll name code and add this
If you look very closely, you'll see that I removed two
or three lines from the move() and
The code layer is dedicated to code only, and I
have a French version of Flash ]
the fill, that is to say the movie clip circle and
open its Actions Panel. Enter the code :
Save your work.
If you test your movie now, you'll see a blue down move
around the scene. Fine. Now we want the outline to follow
the fill. In order to do so, we'll use a controller clip.
Create a new clip (Ctrl + F8), and name it controller.
You won't need to give it an instance name. Leave it blank,
and get back to the main scene (press the little Scene 1
vignette above the timeline).
Open your library (Ctrl + L) and drag and drop the clip
inside the code layer. Open the Actions panel of the
clip and add the code:
_root. in front of shadow is
necessary, because we are now in
so writing shadow._x would be
equivalent to _root.controller.shadow,
which doesn't exist (arrow with the X on it). To get to
shadow, you have to go through _root. See the difference
Save your work and test your movie.
The outline is now following the fill, with a little delay.
I don't know where that come from.
We get to the real actionscript part of the effect. We want
to duplicate our little bacteria, and make them all move,
and also make it so that it looks like they melt one into
In the code layer, under the random motion code, we are
going to put the duplication code.
This means you duplicate the movie
under the name "circle"+i in level
At the beginning, i=1, so the name
of the duplicate will be circle1 and it will lay on
level 51. Logical. And so on and so forth 11 times
because of the do... while loop.
we just wrote is certainly the most important thing in
the tutorial. I don't know if you noticed, but the
circles are loaded between level 51 and 61, whereas
outlines are loaded between level 1 and level 11. This
means that the fills will always be on top of the
outlines. That's the way we can get that melting effect.
If we hadn't done that, the outline of the 11th bacteria
would cover all the other fills.
_root["circle"+i].num = i ;
_root["shadow"+i].num = i ;
Those lines just set a number so that a circle and its
outline have a common number. We'll see about the notation
in the next note. num is used in the controller because the
circle number i has to tell the outline number i
to follow it.
_root.circle._visible = 0 ;
This makes the first circle invisible because it's on level
This makes so that the top movie clip gets always to
be on top. Otherwise the outlines would be over it.
Save your work and test your movie. Your movies are
duplicated all right, but the outlines don't follow their
fill. We have to modify the code in the controller.
Hang on because it's not easy as well.
That's it ! Finished ! Save your
work, and test the movie.
That last bit of code looks a lot like the one we first put
in the controller. The difference is that we loop so
that all the shadows follow their circle, and
that we have to give a general formula of the path to get to
the shadows and the circles. I like those NOTE things...
Whenever you have duplicates generated by a loop, you're
going to need this notation. Let's see how it works.
Flash reads that and thinks : hmm...
_root is equivalent to
_root. except that here you ask Flash to evaluate
what's between the . Here we have a string,
"shadow", and a number,
i, that are
concatenated with the + operator (this means put
one after another).
So flash reads _root., then
shadow1 if i=1
for instance, and finally ._x =
This technique has a wonderful advantage : you don't have
to know the name of your movie clips !!
You can find here all the source code of
the bacteria effect.
tutorial is written by Ilyas Usal. Ilyas is also known as