zooming is going to be a problem with that many objects in the displaylist. you should consider doing that without using a zoom.
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can't answer everything but I find this project very ambitious for someone with 2 weeks experience. I give you credit for trying.
as for the color changes, in each city symbol you need to have a separate "fill" symbol so that you can change the color of the fill and not the stroke.
also this link will help you understand the concept and confusion of target, currentTarget, mouse_over vs roll_over:
if each of your mc's is using a City.as class, that should work fine for giving each city the same properties. No need to create 500 different classes. I'm not an OOP expert but I know what you are trying is very possible and should be straight-forward.
Get Colin Moock's Essential ActionScript 3.0 and Shrupe's Learning ActionScript 3.0 for a crash course on implementing something like this.
Thanks for your answer meqlomor
I tried to link my movieclips to a single class but I think Flash asked for distinct classes to each one of them. I'll give another shot tomorrow.
Regarding the fill color issue, creating a separate "fill" symbol for each city would double the number of symbols. I am now considering to remove the outline of the symbols and make the gap between them longer. This way the gap will act as an outline. And maybe create a single symbol to serve as background for the map, filling the gaps with some other color.
I'll keep reporting my progress
(you're making a mistake to ignore my message.)