Author Archives: AFDStudios

HeroMachine 2 is back!

Thanks to a program called Ruffle, Flash content can now be shown in browsers again! Head on over to the HeroMachine 2 page and start creating your own character portraits like you did back in the day!

Make Your Own HM2 Character!

I could really use your help with

Hi all, I hope you'll forgive the shameless plug, but I'd be really appreciative if you could give our podcast (mostly about Marvel shows) a listen and, if you have a moment, a kind review on the podcast listening platform of your preference. We have a lot of fun with it, but sometimes it feels like talking into the void so knowing someone out there is listening would be a big morale boost for John and I.

Our latest offering is on the penultimate "Loki" episode and can be found at if you fancy giving it a go.

And by the way, if you haven't been watching "Loki" you definitely should, it has been a TON of fun so far!

Thanks for your time!

Character Creation Contest #500 Finalists!

Djuby is gonna kill me but the submissions for the Five Hundredth Edition of the CDS were so good, I couldn't pick just one. I am overjoyed at being reminded once again of the amazing talent and creativity you all have and which you share with everyone. Putting yourself out there is hard to do and I deeply appreciate every single person who took the time to submit their characters.

I picked out my absolute favorites and am adding them all to the Hall of Fame because they are all outstanding. I'll leave it to Djuby to pick one of these to do his own take on as the official prize, but I couldn't leave any of them out in good conscience.

Thank you again to all of you, not just the folks below, and not just everyone who entered this week, but to everyone who's been a part of this amazing community for so many years. It's hard to believe that more than twenty years have passed since the idea for HM first came to me. I never imagined I'd meet so many fantastic, gifted, passionate creators along the way. I'm truly humbled.

And special thanks of course to Djuby and to ALL the moderators here who have kept this place chugging along as I've uprooted my life time after time over the last seven or eight years. I've landed in Utah and am happy being a full time developer, but I'll always have a warm spot in my heart for HeroMachiners, and it's due to the mods that it is still going even in the face of the unstoppable Juggernaut that is Adobe shutting down Flash.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and that most of all, you keep finding ways to express your amazing creativity!

Nerdmudgeon: The Falcon & The Winter Soldier

Nerdmudgeon Aftershow for Falcon and Winter Soldier

We've been doing the Nerdmudgeon podcast for all the Disney+ Marvel shows, starting with the fantastic WandaVision and continuing now with "The Falcon and The Winter Soldier", and after a conversation with AMS I realized I haven't told y'all about it at all! My bad! We're having a lot of fun talking about them and I hope you'll join us.

It's all at, and the latest episode about S1:E4 here.

Nerdmudgeon Game Changers: Superman II!

Nerdmudgeon: Earth's Mightiest Podcast!

Controversy ROCKS the podcast as not all of our hosts agree that "Superman II" is, in fact, a gamer-changer! Tune in to hear the nerd rage roar and to find out who thinks what, who stays friends, and who will KNEEL before ZOD!

How to Use HeroMachine Locally

Hi all, with big thanks to HeroMachiner Eric Bowling, here's how you can use HeroMachine outside of your browser. Adobe has said they're going to be force uninstalling the Flash Player (the standalone player basically) but I don't know that applies to this particular version.

Basically you download a local Flash Player application, then put in the URL for a .swf file (a compiled Flash object, which is what HeroMachine uses) and it plays. I've tried it on my Mac with HM3 and HM2 and it seems to work like a champ. You'll still need an Internet connection but if this goes well I may bundle up the files and make them available online so you could truly run it all locally. We'll just have to see, I don't want to sell people something and then BAM Adobe force uninstalls the Flash Players and it no longer works.

Anyway, the article explaining how to get the Standalone Flash Player Debugger is at – install the one relevant to your Operating System.

Once the Flash Player Debugger is installed per the instructions in that article, launch the Flash Player Debugger and go to "File -> Open Location". This is where you type in the URL to a .swf file. Do not download the .swf file to run from your hard drive, that will not work, you must use "Open Location" and put in one of the URLs below! Here are the ones for HeroMachine so you can just copy and paste:

For fun, here are the URLs for some of the hardly-ever-used versions:

CAVEATS: The "Export as an image" function in HM3 will NOT work. Saving as a text file will. 

I think that's pretty much it. Let me know if you run into issues with this, though honestly, there's not a lot I can do since I can't edit the source files any more and I can't control what Adobe does with their players.

Flash End of Life and maybe HeroMachine as well

Update: Check this post for instructions on how to keep using HeroMachine in a local Flash Player Debugger.

Flash has reached its End of Life and HeroMachine no longer works. Thank you for your support over the years and for your interest.

I have paid thousands of dollars and worked for 2+ years for a replacement but alas, it is not yet done. I've investigated replacements for Flash that would allow it to remain operational, but they haven't worked out.

We'll continue to work behind the scenes to see if we can complete the work that's been done so far but clearly, my promises are worth very little right now. I'm devastated and so sorry that we weren't able to bring this thing in for a landing in time.

I'm proud that for 20+ years, this site has enabled people to bring their inner creativity to life. I feel like I've lost a bit of my soul today and I am so, so sorry to have let you all down.

Check back occasionally and / or join the Facebook group ( for any future updates.

All the best, and please keep on creating.


Nerdmudgeon: Wonder Woman 84 Up now!

Nerdmudgeon: Earth's Mightiest Podcast!

Hi all, I have a new episode of the Nerdmudgeon podcast up at featuring my sisters, Diane and Denise! I had a ton of fun going over the release of the new movie today and I hope you'll give us a listen. Thank you and Merry Christmas!

Site Outage planned for Thursday at Midnight PST to about 2am.

We're doing some maintenance on the site to prepare for the non-Flash version of HeroMachine, so the site will be down this Thursday, November 19, from midnight to about 2am Pacific Time.

Thanks for your patience!

Nerdmudgeon: LEGO Batman!

LEGO Batman Movie poster
Snap on your hat and get ready for the utter insanity of "LEGO Batman" as we finish up asking "Can an animated super-hero movie be as good – or better than! – their live-action counterpart?"! I hope you'll give us a listen!