I have a client that wants an .swf as a final deliverable. They provided a sample of such a file, and they're purely scalable vector graphics done in Flash. However given the nature of the animation (scene assembling, minimal character animation) I am more proficient / it's easier for me to assemble and animate in AE.
Provided I work only with vector graphics in AE is it possible for me to still export whatever I do into a SVG swf? Or do I have to stick with just flash to animate for scalable vector videos?
You can export swf from AE. You can even export flash projects from CS5. However, the vectors work only for effects that can be replicated in Flash- stuff like motion blur will be rasterized on export (if you want to keep the effect- there's an option you need to check on export).
I've tried to export something as simple as a circle vector moving up and down the screen but the swf comes out with nothing but the bg colour. Since it's an action that is easily replicated in flash is there something to the export settings that I'm not aware of?
if you have motion blur set for you comp and do not have rasterize unsupported features checked, the swf file will contain only the layers without motion blur- in this case the bk.
Anyway, it's always good to read the documentation from Adobe on this.