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Chris Satchell talks about XNA Games Print E-mail
Written by Kostas Tzounopoulos   
Sunday, 13 April 2008
Chris Satchell - Microsoft XNA group General ManagerMicrosoft XNA group general manager, Chris Satchell, talks about the game development platform of Windows, Xbox360 and Zune. He says the beta will be released this May, available to Creators Club Members only and the full product at the end of 2008 as expected. In his interview on Eurogamer concentrates on the users and developers experience but also talks about handling security issues by making XNA games run in a sandbox instead of normal native code...





From Eurogamer.net

Eurogamer: What specifically will be part of the beta?

Chris Satchell: Well, the beta will be closed - it's for people in the Creator's Club, so it won't be open to everyone on Xbox Live. It will be open to anybody that joins [the Creator's Club], but what we're really trying to test is the full end-to-end process. Can somebody create a game, can they upload it, rate their content, can the community review it. We're going to go through all those stages of build-submit-review-play and make sure that whole pipeline works smoothly, and then also find out how people actually use it.

As a normal consumer, this will go on under the covers, because you'd need to be in the Creator's Club to be able to use it, but if you're in the Creator's Club you'll be able to go to the websites and see what new games there are, get involved in the rankings, and rate the game against the content, and then also when you're on Xbox Live you'll be able to go to a page and see all the games that are coming through and play them all, and really experience what the community's doing.


Eurogamer: You mentioned the challenges of building up distribution. What challenges are you facing at the moment?

Chris Satchell: Well it's just that there's a lot of infrastructure to build. If you think about it, we've got this complex web front-end to build - complex from our perspective, although hopefully we've made it easy for developers to move through it, but there's a lot there to submit a game, maybe a screenshot, text, I need to be able to go and do the ratings on that, check its progress, people need to give me feedback - and then we've got this whole backend pipeline that can manage this whole process and all the reviews that come in from the other community members, can track it, make sure it's ready for distribution, then can package it all up and put it into our backend catalogues and things that we use to populate content on Xbox Live.

Then we have to work out a way for consumers to get to it easily. We're going to have a consumer-facing site on Windows as well, so you can go to the web and track all the content there and send people links to games you like, and so really it's just a lot of infrastructure we have to build and then link to a lot of other complex processes to make all this work. It's a big cross-group architecture effort to put all this together. And remember at the same time we're working on Game Studio 3.0, which will allow you to develop for Zune as well. We showed that at GDC, and we're still working on improving the tools side at the same time we're doing the pipeline.


Read the full interview  

Related articles:
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All the details about gaming on Zune!
Online Multiplayer games for Zune
Zune gets XNA based Games!


Last Updated ( Sunday, 13 April 2008 )
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