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March 19, 2007


Andrew Douglas

Great info. Are you not planning on targeting Windows at all then? I realize there are a number of distribution obstacles for that... I'm just curious if it's something your considering as we are planning on using XNA strictly for Windows without any preconceived notions that we'll ever get through the gatekeepers for XBLA.

Lucas Hardi

Do you think there would ever be any possibility of integration of XNA with WPF/E? I don't know enough of the technical side to understand how stupid this question might be, but the vision I have is: Build with XNA, publish to the web with WPF/E, play the game embedded in a page. That way you could be cross platform to anything with a web browser. Crazy, right?

Andrew Douglas

Lucas: don't hold your breath. If you want to make games for any platform supported by WPF/e, just make games using WPF/e. My understanding is that you'll soon even be able to code WPF/e apps using C#, but XNA is a completely different beast. Though one could argue that Flash is just as good if not better (especially in terms of install base) for that "platform".
If you want a cross platform, 3d capable game engine that has the kind of capabilities along the lines of XNA and can be launched from a browser, you're going to have to look at Java.

Emmanuel Deloget

Thanks for the info! I'm not that far to feature this as a gamedev.net news :) In fact, I'm going to feature it - as it contains a lot of very valuable information.

Regarding Mono, the Mono.Xna project (part of the Tao framework) is supposed to enable you to run your game using the Mono platform - but it's in its infancy stage (see http://www.taoframework.com/Mono.Xna). That may become a viable alternative later, but right now it's just too short to support any real-life game (hope that Rob Loach will forgive me on that one).



I gotta say the cynic in me feels like XNA is actaully a ploy to prevent games from being on any platform but 360 and possibly Windows. Microsoft's hope is that the lure of making a 360 game will get people to make the game in XNA. Once they do, there are only two paths.

Path #1, very rare, Microsoft blesses you and you get published on XBLA

Path #2, very common, Microsoft doesn't bless you are your dead in the water. Sure, you *could* port to another platform but MS is hoping inertia will stop you.

And, even if you are one of the rare teams that get to #1 path there's no promise their terms will be acceptable or their marketing or whatever else but they hold all the power because your game is running on their platform only and they know you'll have to invest lots of time to get it running else where.

Florian Zitzelsberger

Hi Jamie. I just read your thread about the Microsoft XBLA approval process. I'm currently working on a commercial quality "casual" game project together with a small team of people. I would like to explore the possibilities we have on the XBox360 market, but the thing is that we are all quite new to the business. At the moment I don't even know how we could have someone from XBLA to take a look at what we have. So I wanted to ask if it would be possible for us to get in contact with each other - so I could ask you a few questions (nothing that is covered by NDAs, however). That would be great!
Thank you!


As someone working on a XNA GSE game, I tend to microanalyze any comment related to the future of GSE, and here we go:
"Just now we got a pre-version of pro, sort of a 'pre-pre-alpha' they're calling it, and to do the network play we have to get actual dev kits, which we don't have yet, but Any Day Now (tm)" implies that GSPro doesn't have network libraries for the 360 target, at least in this early version. Fair assumption? Neither does GSE, but a lot of people are assuming there will be network libraries for 360 targets at some point in GS' history.

Jamie Fristrom

GSPro will have network stuff - so you can make a fully featured TRC compliant Xbox 360 game - by the time it's done. It's in its infancy right now but we're taking the hit with the new tech so you don't have to.


Thanks for clearing that up. Put me down for a copy of Schizoid :)


"Path #2, very common, Microsoft doesn't bless you are your dead in the water."

Hardly. You can still sell your game on Windows. You're free to do whatever you want on the Windows platform with XNA.

David Mata

Good article.

greggman's proposed path #2 is a rather weak one though. What you are forgetting is that to get into that process, you really should have a prototype, and beyond that... once you have a prototype, you can still shop it. REGARDLESS of it being written n XNA. Hell, a competent business person could spin it as a benefit...

"We decided to focus on rapid prototyping so we could hammer out game play, over finding a tool that is so generic that we could make people happy."

Funny part of it, nobody cares what your prototype is written in, as long as it works, and shows gameplay.

We're finding that XNA is awesome for rapid prototyping. We're at the three man months point, and we've got some really exciting things in the prototype... consequently, that green light meeting is a scary obstacle on the horizon.

I find it interesting that the author's project was the only one in that meeting with a prototype. It makes me wonder what the other dev teams were thinking.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
  • Schizoid
    Penny Arcade PAX 10 Award
    Nominated for XBLA Best Original Game
    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game