Zune XNA

All about the Zune and XNA

XNA Game Studio 3.0 and Zune = Zune XNA

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Mar 072008
 
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I realized that I never posted a link to the announcement last month about XNA development on Zune. It’s been a long time coming but we’ll have games for Zune that are designed and developed by members of the Zune community. If anyone is as hyped about developing a game as I am then please contact me so we can get to work on building some games for Zune game players.
XNA Team Blog : Announcing: XNA Game Studio 3.0 and Zune

Announcing: XNA Game Studio 3.0 and ZuneDavid “LetsKillDave” Weller

XNA Evangelist

We could have rested on our laurels by just announcing the new Xbox LIVE community games and XNA Creators Club Online features, but we’re a driven bunch of people here, and we’re passionate about gaming, so let’s lob another amazing treat out there.

The XNA Community Games Platform team is delighted to offer you a sneak peek at our first major feature for XNA Game Studio 3.0: The ability to build games for the Zune platform! This will let you write one game and deploy it to all three platforms that XNA Game Studio 3.0 will support: the Xbox 360, Windows, and now the Zune. While the Zune lacks the 3D graphics horsepower to drive high-end games like you can on the Xbox 360, we’ve taken extreme steps in making sure that you will have the broadest access to the XNA Framework APIs possible, allowing you to create fun Zune games while still letting you integrate carefully with the overall Zune media experience. That means that XNA Game Studio 3.0 integration includes discoverability/access to the user’s music – allowing the user to customize background soundtracks or create real-time visualizations at their discretion. In addition, the XNA Community Games Platform team has announced the ability to have multiple Zunes wirelessly engage in an ad-hoc gaming experience (think of the possibilities!).

Our current planning is to offer a preview release of XNA Game Studio 3.0 in the Spring 2008 timeframe, with a final release scheduled for the holiday 2008 season. We look forward to your feedback and seeing what kind of amazing games you can create for the Zune!

Read more about this at http://creators.xna.com/whatsnew.aspx

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Oct 022006
 
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Our new forum moderator Spell 125 has graciously donated his time and effort to assisting me, the graphically challenged, by designing a new header for the front page of the Zune MAX blog. The goal was to flow better with the design and style of the forums and to show our relationship to the Zune device.
I think it looks awesome and I’m most appreciative of his work for our community. Spell 125 is on a roll considering he was also the lucky winner of a Zune poster when selected as designer of the Zuneguy logo.

Spell 125 is better known as James Hostetler and for his blog DAPularity which offers the low down on the latest digital audio players (DAP) in the market. He’s come up with a cool iPod vs Zune size comparison image that shows the difference between a Zune, an iPod and a deck of cards. It really helps put things in perspective as to the actual size of Zune for those of us unfortunate enough not to have held one yet.

James also has a nice write up on Rock Box on Zune. which is a very designable custom firmware used to extend the software capabilities of digital audio players. He feels Microsoft has no reason not to open up the Zune for customization or "modding". He writes in his DAP blog: "By basing the coding off a commonly used language and OS, Windows made their PDAs easily accessible to windows-based applications and allowed them to run a multi-tude of interesting multimedia programs. I would have to say I expect the same efforts for the Zune. By placing no barriers between the Zune and its customers, I believe Microsoft will open it up to those respectable modders that make our life so much more personalized."

I have to agree with James in that the best move Microsoft can make is to open up the Zune platform to the army of existing Windows developers for an almost endless array of extensions and applications for Zune. The power of the Windows development world is a vital asset in the success and capabilities of Zune. I’m hopeful the announcement by David Cauldon at Zunester about there not being a Zune SDK relates to the fact they have something much larger prepared for Zune developers. I think it may be more like a Zune XNA Framework, or Zune ZNA maybe, that would be used for development on the Zune. David says Zune is not a platform but a  consumer device. I say the consumer will decide that the Zune is in fact a platform and should left for all of us to personalize with third party extensions for a truly "connected experience" in our "digital lifestyle". The market will force them to open the platform to developers if they want it to succeed and in the end there will be a Zune SDK of some form or other.

So, I would like to thank James for his work on cleaning up the look of things around here. I would also like to thank all the other dedicated members of the Zune community for their ambitious assistance in building a great forum. We’re having fun in our Zune boards and you should check it out if you haven’t yet.

 

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