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#1 DivideByZero  Icon User is offline

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Where do you see XNA's future going?

Post icon  Posted 29 July 2011 - 06:34 AM

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So XNA has been out now for quite some time now and there has still been no triple A game made using the framework so far.
1) Where do you see the future for XNA?
2) Will it always be for indie devs?
3) Will big companies eventually use it for some games?
4) Will you still be using it in the future?

What I think:
1) I see it being in the same position as it is now, just a platform for students and hobbyists.
Unfortunately it seems that Microsoft doesn't care for the indie marketplace anymore, finding the games are a lot harder than they should be. And for this reason it doesn't make sense to make a game in it as it will probably only be played by 5 people.
The fact that win 7 phone has it as it's game making tool significantly increases its market, but from what I've seen this opportunity has still not been taken up effectively.

2) Sadly, yes. Until someone can prove that a triple A game can be made in XNA and that game generating a lot of profit, it will always be known for the hundreds of crappy games that are currently in the indie marketplace.

3) No. Mostly for the reasons explained in (2), also the fact that it's managed code means that companies won't even look at it.
Although if microsoft could build a template engine that can use XNA so that companies don't need to then the chance of them utilising XNA increases tenfold.

4) In the future, probably not.
Although I love the ease of it, if I were to decide on being a games programmer and I told them I was good at XNA. I would most likely be shown the door. Over the summer I will start looking into either direct X or Open GL and will probably use that in the future for my games. Either that, or make applet games as that's what I've started doing lately.

What are your thoughts?

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Replies To: Where do you see XNA's future going?

#2 Kilorn  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 07:03 AM

I see XNA as an untapped geyser. The power that this framework brings to game development is severely underestimated. Sure, it's a higher level language so it's easier to learn to use and managing memory is already handled for you, but are either of those really a bad thing?

As much as I would love to see XNA being used a lot more, unfortunately due to the "games", if you can call them that, that have been produced and put on XBLIG for sale being of such inferior quality, I don't think professional developers will ever take the framework seriously. Until people like myself, and the rest of the XNA community can release games of high enough quality to make people notice then I feel that the framework will remain just an indie tool.

Most big companies already have development teams that are a lot more familiar with other languages and API's. XNA is still the new kid on the block when it comes to game development, and I really would love to see more large companies start to take it seriously, but as I stated in point 2, it's hard to take anything seriously when you've seen such lousy output for the most part.

I don't see myself ever not using XNA, even if it is just for my own little projects. I just enjoy working with it so much. I've yet to find anything that I can honestly say that I do not like doing in XNA.

On a side note, I've seen some game development companies starting to pop up across the country, and the world, that are using XNA as their primary development tool which gives me a lot of hope. All it takes is a small group of people to get together and make some really high quality games to compete with all the crap that has been released up to this point, and we'll definitely see more people start taking the framework more seriously.

For now, I'm sticking with Windows development in XNA. I don't feel like the markets for XBLIG or WP7 are at the level of justifying all the work to release a product on either of those platforms, not to mention Microsoft doesn't take a cut of the profits for Windows releases unless you use the networking capabilities that are already built into XNA. Just grab another library for networking and hack it into place, and you're good to go.
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#3 Sergio Tapia  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 07:28 AM

Terraria, the game that's been on Steams top played list, was built using XNA. It'll catch on and spread like wildfire. Good tools always do.
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#4 Kilorn  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 07:46 AM

Terraria is an awesome example of what a good development team can do with XNA. The graphics aren't what most gamers are used to nowadays, but it was made that way for a reason. I've been incredibly impressed with the videos for Terraria and I applaud Re-Logic for the work that they're doing. Now if only they would be willing to give me a free copy of it. My gaming budget is completely tapped out after getting Alice a few days ago.
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#5 DivideByZero  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 09:57 AM

Yeah I've heard of Terraria being made in XNA.
I'm almost tempted to buy it just because it was made in XNA, it doesn't really seem like my sort of game though.
Maybe if it gets enough sells, other companies will adopt XNA :)

This post has been edited by DivideByZero: 29 July 2011 - 10:02 AM

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#6 ShadowsEdge19  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 11:12 AM

I see Microsoft officially releasing the framework for using the Kinect with indie games, for both Windows and Xbox. Although the former may require an additional driver software like used for the controllers.

This post has been edited by ShadowsEdge19: 29 July 2011 - 11:27 AM

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#7 bonyjoe  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 29 July 2011 - 01:06 PM

XNA isn't trying to be the best, it isn't trying to make big companies come crawling to it's door. It's there as a stepping stone, a learning tool and a viable solution for small dev teams with low budgets to reduce the hassle of getting their great idea out the door.

No AAA developers are ever going to use it for a full retail release because it limits what they can do with their games. But there are plenty of great XNA games that you can find about. Magicka is definitely the best I can think of, the depth of that game is great and it was built by a load of swedish students who just "decided to make a game one day".

The indie marketplace is hard to find good games because there is so much crap on there. But what are Microsoft supposed to do? Kick the crap games off? That would be a bit insensitive and make the platform a lot less viable for everyone. All they can do is show you the top games, there are plenty sites on the internet that will provide you with a list of worthwhile XBL Indie games to try. If you want your game to succeed marketing is a must. Terraria didn't sell 800,000 or so just because it was good, it sold that much because Notch tweeted about it and then the developers ran with it.
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#8 mgchild  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 11 August 2011 - 11:15 PM

I know this topic is getting old, but then again, so am I...

I think XNA has a few things going for it that could lead somewhere in the future, but they would have to be accomplished first:

1 - Companies care about XNA, the end user doesn't. They just want a great game experience. Look at minecraft, while on the front-end, it's anything but sexy, but there is no doubt it's a killer app. XNA needs one.

2 - In retail business is all about location, location, location.. then games are all about story, story, story. Give me something immersive and how it was written will become secondary. Think about big titles and how many of them were developed using someone else's engine. That's pretty high level "coding", but they are still successful.

3 - But the greatest hope is the bad market right now. Bad markets plus ease of accessibility leads to very creative entrepreneurs. Young folks that are exploring things today will produce the killer app for tomorrow.

4 - To get to the killer app, we have to give up convention. Part of the strategy of those on the top (just like it is in any business model) is to make it extremely difficult for startups to steal market share, yet XNA is has the potential to do just that. It's cheap and has a learning curve that isn't impossible.

Ultimately, we could be sitting on the solution right here on D.I.C. There are some truly talented folks who appear to have a desire to accomplish something. Why are we not banding together to do that? If you want a call to action... considered it called.

This post has been edited by mgchild: 11 August 2011 - 11:19 PM

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#9 DivideByZero  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 12 August 2011 - 01:37 AM

View Postmgchild, on 11 August 2011 - 11:15 PM, said:

Ultimately, we could be sitting on the solution right here on D.I.C. There are some truly talented folks who appear to have a desire to accomplish something. Why are we not banding together to do that? If you want a call to action... considered it called.

I'm surprised Kilorn, SixOfEleven and Fib haven't already made the next Minecraft in XNA already.

It's a good idea.
The sad thing is, 99% of the time that people agree to work on a game with people over the internet, one by one the people lose interest or are too busy and the project dies out :/
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#10 Kilorn  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 12 August 2011 - 05:21 AM

SixOfEleven has just recently joined a team that I've been working with for about a month or so and we're all pumping away at a codebase. Hopefully sometime very soon we'll have something that's really worth showing.

EDIT: Also, if you guys do all band together to make a game, I'd probably be willing to help in some way. Not sure what kind of time I would have to devote to it, seeing as I've got 2 projects going right now with 2 separate teams, and a full time job that has nothing to do with XNA unfortunately, but I'm always here to help this community in any way that I can. Even if it's only advice and constructive criticism.

This post has been edited by Kilorn: 12 August 2011 - 05:24 AM

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#11 bonyjoe  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 13 August 2011 - 11:40 AM

I'd be happy to be part of a group project, it would be great motivation I think, and is always a good way to learn more.
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#12 ShadowsEdge19  Icon User is offline

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Re: Where do you see XNA's future going?

Posted 13 August 2011 - 12:10 PM

Count me in too.
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