One week after the Community Technical Preview Release of XNA 3.0:
After playing around with a Zune and getting our code base running on XNA 3.0 we start the "real" work.
1) We decide on a control scheme [although we have yet to work it out fully for the zune 30gb]. The Pad will be used for input both movement and shooting, the play/pause button will be used either pull up a weapon selection menu or cancel shooting if you have pulled out a weapon. If you press in the center button it will deploy your weapon. If you press and hold the center button after deploying a weapon it will power the weapon, and the weapon will fire when you release the center button.
2) We trimmed the fat out of our game. There were a large number of things that needed to be removed in order to get performance up to par on the zune, and it turns out we had some code in the game that it tuns out was time-intensive but never used. Over the next few days I'll post more about optimizing for the zune, and Cy might be linking to other articles that have been written about Zune optimization. As you read over those future articles I know some of you will end up saying "I did that and it only gave me a 1 frame per second boost", remember that while each of these small changes only gave you a tiny performance boost the difference in playability of a 30fps game vs a 15fps game is very noticeable to a user.
3) We re-worked some game play mechanics. Working on a 240 x 320 screen is difficult. Sure its plenty of space for tetris but this is supposed to be a multiplayer game. Our character size had to be adjusted as did how aiming and shooting worked.
Its been almost a week since the CTP of XNA 3.0 came out and I want to be sure to give everyone something to play with . This is a 2 day old build of the game without some of the optimizations that were done, it also still includes the per-pixel collsion. The next release should be "Beta" quality and run at close to a constant 30fps. This will also be the only release to have per-pixel collision, deformable terrain, and invader-zim inspired sprites. Our next release will have our own IP that will be free for others to use in it. This release is pre-alpha quality, there are many MANY bugs but it should be playable to a point. I hope everyone enjoys it and and it helps them make their own games.