XNA Game Studio 3.1 is here! Start developing games for Xbox, Zune and Windows

XNA Game Studio 3.1 is go! and it brings support for the new features in Xbox 360 NXE – Xbox LIVE Avatars, Xbox LIVE Party features, Video playback and more!XNA Game Studio 3.1

What’s new in XNA Game Studio 3.1?

  • Avatar Support: Render and animate Avatars to use in your game to represent gamers and other characters within your game.
  • Xbox LIVE Party Support: Enabling gamers to communicate, even when each gamer is not playing the same game in the same multiplayer session. LIVE Party supports up to an eight-way group voice chat for gamers and keeps gamers connected before, during, and after a gameplay session, persisting across title switches.
  • Video Playback: XNA Game Studio now supports the ability to play back video that can be used for such purposes as opening splash and logo scenes, cut scenes, or in-game video displays. This set of XNA Framework APIs supports the following features:
    • Full screen video playback
    • Video playback to simple textures in game
    • Control of playback such as pause/resume and stop
    • Retrieve properties of the video, such as playback time, size, and frame rate
    • Determine the type and usage of the audio track, such as if it has music, dialog, or music and dialog
    • Play back multiple video streams at the same time
  • Audio API: 3.1 has a new usage pattern of SoundEffect.Play. Sound instances created by Play calls are disposed automatically when playback ends, and SoundEffect.Play returns a Boolean to indicate success or failure.
  • Content Pipeline Enhancements: improvements making it much easier to add customer types (custom attributes for run-time of an object and run-time type version of an object, and the ability to determine if deserialization into an existing object is possible).
  • XACT3 Support: includes support for XACT3 with new features including the ability to enable a filter on every track, and support for the xWMA compression format.
  • Visual Studio Changes: XNA Game Studio 3.1 supports both 3.0 and 3.1 projects, and it includes support for upgrading projects from 3.0 to 3.1.
  • Read the complete detail about all the new changes at XNA Creators Club Online support.

    You will have to uninstall any previous version of XNA Game Studio in order to install version 3.1.

    XNA Game Studio 3.1 wont work if you only have Visual Studio 2010 Beta 1 installed. You will have to install either Visual Studio 2008 Express or the full version of Visual Studio 2008 in order to start developing games for Xbox 360, Zune and Windows.

    Download XNA Game Studio 3.1