As a programmer I can understand code but I have little/no artistic talent. One of the key things we wanted to address with XNA Game Studio Express is making content a first class citizen in the IDE.

A lot of people today have two completely different systems when they build their game: one for code and one for content. Building content is a non-trivial task involving exporting, normalizing and processing content and then sequencing this with a relevant code build. We wanted to make this whole process simpler for enthusiasts so we have a pretty complete (and pluggable) content build system in XNA Game Studio Express. Michael talks about the content pipeline here.

But what good is a content pipeline without content? Well, buried away on the XNA Partners page is some links to some interesting things you might want to look at:

  • Autodesk FBX SDK - SDK for handling FBX files.
  • GarageGames Torque X - cool versions of their frameworks and tools using XNA Framework
  • SOFTIMAGE |XSI MOD tool - build your own models for your games
  • Turbo Squid - pick up some free models to prototype your game

I'm going to unlock the inner artist in me over the holidays and put some content through that pipeline.