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Sooker

Is XNA dying and MS forcing to C++?

124 posts in this topic

Hi GameDevs,
I started programming a year ago with Pascal (Lazarus) and moved then to C# to make some Windows Phone 7 apps.
I made some small apps for companys, but now that I got some experience I want to start coding my first small 2D games.
After some games I will try myself on a paid game-app.
With this as my clear and not to high goals I searched for the best Framework to choose and remembered XNA. It´s relativly easy to use and C# is my language of choice.
But how is the future of XNA? MS removed it from VS2012 and that makes me curious. I wouldn´t call it dead or nearly dead, but I don´t want to learn a "dead" Framework.

It seems like I´m forced to C++ and DirectX or other Engines /C++ and DX in case of apps)

Is XNA still worth learning?
Or do I have to switch to C++?
What other choices do I have?

Thanks.

-Sooker
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As far as the XNA question goes, I wanna know this as well.

Do you have to switch to C++? I wouldn't say so. I mean, MC is in Java so you could go to Java. You could even go to C# still and find a different library besides XNA.
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As long as people can freely distribute XNA games on PC, I do not think it will go away soon.

Also, you do not need to go with C++ to learn DirectX. SlimDX and SharpDX are well supported frameworks (and SharpDX let you make Metro-compatible apps for Windows 8).
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[quote name='xexuxjy' timestamp='1348067127' post='4981706']
Microsoft do seem to be trying to kill it off, they've recently split the creators section of their site into phone/indie games sections and in the process broken nearly every single google link to the data there.
[/quote]

That one is plainly just an oversight on Microsoft when they updated the sub-domains for each section, forgetting to handle re-directs properly and SEO integrity possibly going down the tubes as a result. You can still open the Google links, by replacing "forums" with "xboxforums" (if you're looking for Indie games topics). It's still a bit of a pain to do each time, though.
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[quote name='Inuyashakagome16' timestamp='1348064760' post='4981686']
Do you have to switch to C++? I wouldn't say so. I mean, MC is in Java so you could go to Java. You could even go to C# still and find a different library besides XNA.
[/quote]

C++ seems to be a better option if I want to develop for Windows Phone.

[quote name='CC Ricers' timestamp='1348065887' post='4981698']
Also, you do not need to go with C++ to learn DirectX. SlimDX and SharpDX are well supported frameworks (and SharpDX let you make Metro-compatible apps for Windows 8).
[/quote]

The first impressions by browsing their site are not bad. But the community seems to be small. This isn´t really good if you just started with game frameworks in my opinion. But I will keep it in mind.

[quote name='xexuxjy' timestamp='1348067127' post='4981706']
they've recently split the creators section of their site into phone/indie games sections
[/quote]

Its a bit confusing. I liked the old style way more. The WP7 resources for your first app where much better imo.

-Sooker
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i think they may be killing it. All you have to do is go on Xbox Live Indie Games section and you will find only maybe 5% of the games are worth the cash, and about 60% of the games last about 15 minutes. And people in the community (my friends) hate them because of this. I think it maybe that Microsoft is trying to forget it. I cannot say anything about windows phone 7 though. As for learning C++, i am quite new to programming so i can't really say.
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I never thought they would kill it without delivering something new to compensate it.
But now im curious about getting into C++ or staying at C#
This rerolls/negates the old opionion about getting first into C# and XNA and maybe later to C++

Going from C# to C++ with DirectX could be to big as next step?
SlimDX/SharpDX seems to be the only way to go in my situation
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There's a great deal of novelty around C++11 even inside MSFT. Plus XNA was never updated to support DX11 (even though it was ported to WP7 through DX10.1). This is the reason why C++ is strongly recommended these days by MSFT.

For what I can uderstand from what I see/read, XNA will still be there but tehre will be no more updates nor support to it. So, you will be still able to use it for the creation of games for supported platforms (including Win8 Desktop and WP8). Now, if you still want to use XNA-like coding, then you could then use Monogame or ANX (both offering support for Win8 on ARM and WP8, through SharpDX).

Now, if you prefer to directly use DirectX APIs but want to stick with C#, then my suggestion is SharpDX (I'm not sure whether SlimDX is been developed any longer), which is a 1-to-1 wrapper of DX, supporting versions 11.1, 11, 10.1 and 9c.
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Thanks for all the answers.
I will go to C++ and take the SFML Route.
Learning something new is never bad ;)
Maybe i will give SharpDX or Unity a try, but C++ seems to be the way to go.

-Sooker
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This is really interesting, I was going to look into XNA again, but it seems Microsoft is deprecating it. Maybe they are moving all their focus to Windows Phone?
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AN alternative to XNA is monogame. Monogame is primarily intended to run on mono instead of .net (but for windows games it will run fine on .net) otherwise it is for all intents and purposes an OpenGL clone of XNA. If you haven't heard of mono just consider it to be .net but cross platform and open source. Monogame apps compiled to mono specifically (.net on windows can actually run mono applications already) will run on mac, windows and linux. They can also run on monodroid and monotouch (mono for android and iOS respectively) if you can afford the $400 each license (monotouch/droid are not open source or free). Monogame mobile games codewise are very much like their WP7 XNA counterparts and it is easy to port back and forth. Same goes for windows XNA games and desktop monogame apps. Bastion is an example of a game originally made using XNA but has since been ported to monogame. PS Vita support is also in the works and although its not officially supported mono can run on BSD and monogame should be able to aswell. Edited by 6677
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Windows Phone 7 used XNA for games.
Maybe they wanted just 1 way for making games (DirectX), like their Shared-Core. One for everything?
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I have heard rumors from the grapevine, some people I know who work at microsoft are saying there is a replacement for xna comming.

I personally feel they will be bundling it with the next version of directx, basicaly a metro version of xna.
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[quote name='kd7tck' timestamp='1348084857' post='4981801']
I have heard rumors from the grapevine, some people I know who work at microsoft are saying there is a replacement for xna comming.
[/quote]

I've heard that some of the games that Msft Game Studios have created for Win8 marketplace have been developed with SharpDX, so maybe the replacement is being built upon it. Edited by Ultrahead
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@xoofx: thanks a lot for the explanation! (edit: btw, for those who still don't know him, he's the dev of SharpDX) Edited by Ultrahead
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Hi,

I feel that the many C# programmers combined with the programmer friendly nature of C# is a mass of energy which will demand that many games be made from the language, regardless of corporate executive desires. The C++ game development will also stay strong because so many like it.

The .NET framework power and flexibility is also hard to beat. This will likely grow in popularity, in my opinion.

The scripting language used for game creation when two languages are used in the game system as a whole is the preference of the game developer and all major ones will be supported for a long time, including XNA.

Given these things, chose what you want and rest confidently it them.


Clinton
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I have to say that as a primarily C# developer I feel that we're getting a raw deal lately, e.g. XNA, Silverlight, WPF. I wonder whether it's better to focus on 3rd party game engines (e.g. Unity) rather than specific Windows .NET APIs because the people who produce those tools have the motivation to keep the transition smooth whereas Microsoft obviously does not.
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Yeah, I agree with your point to some extent, Jeffery, but Microsoft claims recently to offer strong support for XNA into the indefinate future. XNA still has a strong following, so perhaps demand will send a message adequately to Microsoft? Another thing to remember is that Microsoft just finished a good 10 year or so of heavy expense and delay from lawsuits and is now refocusing on R&D according to their spokespersons.


Clinton Edited by 3Ddreamer
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Thanks for the reply :)
With all this information SharpDX seems to be a better choice for me. I will definitely give it a try.
I can still switch to C++ if I want to. But making a game in C# is way more comfortable for me.

@xoofx: I like it how you, as a dev of SharpDX, interact with the community. This convinced me, that their is quite a well supported community.

We will see what will fill the gap, SharpDX looks to be a good deal. Lets wait for Microsofts move.

-Sooker
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If C# is your choice as a language, then you can try Unity3D. Its free and its not going to die soon. If you have a good grasp of C#, then Unity can be a very powerful tool for making games and it also supports many platforms. Another option will be to use the C# built in GDI, msdn can be a very good reference for it. Good Luck :D
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[quote name='CC Ricers' timestamp='1348068037' post='4981710']
[quote name='xexuxjy' timestamp='1348067127' post='4981706']
Microsoft do seem to be trying to kill it off, they've recently split the creators section of their site into phone/indie games sections and in the process broken nearly every single google link to the data there.
[/quote]

That one is plainly just an oversight on Microsoft when they updated the sub-domains for each section, forgetting to handle re-directs properly and SEO integrity possibly going down the tubes as a result. You can still open the Google links, by replacing "forums" with "xboxforums" (if you're looking for Indie games topics). It's still a bit of a pain to do each time, though.
[/quote]

I wish it was so, but a lot of people (including MVP's) have reported/raised this with Microsoft for a couple of months now and have had no response at all. Not even acknowledgement of the issue.
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[quote name='kazisami' timestamp='1348126895' post='4981952']
If C# is your choice as a language, then you can try Unity3D. Its free and its not going to die soon. If you have a good grasp of C#, then Unity can be a very powerful tool for making games and it also supports many platforms
[/quote]

I don´t want to start with Unity3D. I want to start with a 2D game. anything related to 3D is to far away from my actual goal and it would be overwhelming to start with Unity first.
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