Thoughts about setup and deployment issues, WiX, XNA, the .NET Framework and Visual Studio
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My colleague Stephen Styrchak has written a blog post and published a helpful Visual Studio add-in that I want to link here in the hopes that it will be helpful to XNA Game Studio 2.0 developers. In the blog post, located at http://badcorporatelogo.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!43EB71B104A2D711!235.entry, Stephen introduces an add-in he created that makes it easier to develop cross-platform games in Visual Studio 2005 using XNA Game Studio 2.0.
For those of you not familiar with the concept, the XNA Game Studio 2.0 Visual Studio package includes a feature that allows you to convert a Windows game project to an Xbox 360 game project and vice versa. You can access this feature via an item in the Project menu in the Visual Studio IDE and an item in the context menu that appears when right-clicking on your XNA Game Studio 2.0 project in the Visual Studio Solution Explorer. More details about what is done behind the scenes when converting games to new platforms can be found in the Cross-Platform Game Project Converter topic on MSDN.
As noted in that MSDN topic, changes to existing code files that exist in both projects will automatically be reflected when each project is built. However, files added to a project after conversion will only exist in the project they are added to.
Stephen's add-in allow syou to more easily synchronize your cross-platform game projects by automating the following actions when they are done after you convert a project to a new platform:
I encourage you to take a look at the blog post and this add-in if you are working on cross-platform game projects in XNA Game Studio 2.0. Keep in mind that Visual C# 2005 Express Edition does not support add-ins, so you will only be able to use this add-in within Visual Studio 2005 Standard Edition or higher.