XNA Essentials

Game Programming for Xbox 360, PC + Windows Phone


XNA Game Studio 4.0

On September 16th, the XNA Framework team will be releasing XNA Game Studio 4.0.  While games created for the Xbox 360 will still be based on XNA Game Studio 3.1 for the near future, the team is also releasing a beta version of the new Connect tool (that allows you to connect your development machine to your Xbox 360 to transfer your XNA games) on the same day.

September 16th is when the Windows Phone 7 tools will be launched as well.  The timing isn’t coincidental since the Windows Phone 7 will allow developers to create games and apps using either Silverlight or XNA Game Studio.  The tools have been in beta for a while now.  The actual Windows Phone 7 Series devices will be released sometime this holiday season.

XNA Game Studio 4.0 has breaking code changes. The XNA Framework team went with the mantra of “If you break it, break it good.” They went with a  new approach of Reach vs. HiDef.  Reach is being able to write the same code for all supported platforms – Windows, Xbox 360, Windows Phone 7. HiDef is targeting a particular platform and the specific features it has available.  This was a great move and while it causes discomfort in updating any existing code it makes a stronger base for bringing in even more platforms in the future.

Make sure you grab the tools as soon as they are available in a couple of days!

I certainly hope that all of my readers read Shawn Hargreaves blog regularly. I’ve only linked to a couple of his posts here about XNA Game Studio 4.0, but he has a wealth of information that you will find beneficial. So make sure to catch up on his blog posts if you haven’t already.

Happy Programming!


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