In which hints become facts: XNA Game Studio 4.0

In which hints become facts: XNA Game Studio 4.0

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Today we announced what I've been hinting at this past few weeks: XNA Game Studio 4.0 is coming soon* to a phone near you!

Quick summary:

  • New platform
    • Windows Phone 7 Series

  • New features
    • Integrates with Visual Studio 2010
    • Dynamic audio output
    • Microphone input
    • BasicEffect has four new siblings
      • SkinnedEffect
      • EnvironmentMapEffect
      • DualTextureEffect
      • AlphaTestEffect

  • Improved portability and usability
    • Collapsed graphics caps into just two profile levels: Reach and HiDef
    • Many graphics API improvements
    • This involves some breaking API changes
    • Split Microsoft.Xna.Framework.dll into several assemblies, to make it more obvious which pieces are available on each platform

I will be writing more about these things over the coming months. If you have questions, the comment box below this post is ready and waiting to receive them...

* no, I don't have a release date for you at this time :-)

  • will it integrate with Visual Studio 2010 Express?

    And will there be an emulator? (if you can only debug on a device it will be a little hard developing for devices that haven't been released yet)

  • "Q: How easy is it to port a game from Xbox 360, Windows or Zune to Windows Phone 7 Series?

    A: XNA Game Studio 4.0 makes it possible for developers to adapt games built on previous versions of XNA Game Studio to work on Windows Phone 7 Series without re-coding the entire game. Also, once a developer has created a Windows Phone 7 Series game, they can use some of that code in XNA Game Studio 3.1 to adapt that game for Xbox 360, Windows or Zune."

    Soo XNA GS4 is ONLY for WP7?  Not all that portable if you've gotta move code back to VS2008 and 3.1

  • > This involves some breaking API changes

    Perhaps...support for DX10 or DX11? :)

  • The new effects look interesting, and dynamic audio ouput will be useful. Is microphone input only on the phone, or will it include the headset on the Xbox?

  • @Kevin Daly

    Every version of Win Mobile had emulators, but until now you could only develop on VS Pro or above.

    So I'm really interested if XNA and VS 10 Express can be used along with the Win 7 Mobile emulator (which most probably will be found in the upcoming Win 7 Mobile SDK, if not standalone or integrated with XNA 4.0).

    P.S. Sometimes I really hate Microsoft naming schemes. Is "Windows Phone 7" also called Windows 7 Mobile or has Mobile been removed entirely?

  • > Soo XNA GS4 is ONLY for WP7?

    XNA Game Studio 4.0 supports Windows, Xbox 360, and Windows Phone 7 Series.

  • > Is "Windows Phone 7" also called Windows 7 Mobile or has Mobile been removed entirely?

    We don't use the word "Mobile" at all any more.

    "Windows Phone" refers to the entire product line, covering all versions.

    "Windows Phone 7 Series" refers to the specific version that we are talking about now and supporting in Game Studio 4.0.

  • I noticed the ZuneHD is missing from the list of supported platforms under GS 4.0. Has ZuneHD support been totally dropped then?

  • > XNA Game Studio 4.0 supports Windows, Xbox 360, and Windows Phone 7 Series.

    What happened to Zune & ZuneHD?

  • any way to read in camera feed to build augmented reality apps?  Or would that have to be done in silverlight for windows phone 7?

  • So what's the deal with ZuneHD? You guys dropped it very fast. XNA doesn't have a good track record with mobile platforms.

  • Yeah I also wonder if there will be DX 10/11 support for windows only anytime soon. Would love to have tesselation and displacement ^^.

  • Is the mic input limited to mobile devices, or is that something that could be used with the Xbox360 headset or a Rock Band USB mic?

  • > will there be an emulator?

    We will be talking in much more detail about the development environment at the MIX conference next week. Even if you can't be there in person, all the MIX content will be online, too, so you can check it out from the comfort of your own home :-)

  • > Is microphone input only on the phone, or will it include the headset on the Xbox?

    Microphone will be supported on all three platforms.

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