Off Topic - Making a browser recognize your RSS feed...

This one is a little off topic... just a tip for you community site guys out there with a site that has an RSS feed... If you are using something like Community Server or Live Spaces this probably isn't relative to you but if you have written your own feed you might this will help with some feed readers, etc... You can make IE/Firefox see your feed and light up the RSS feed icon on the browsers toolbar by adding one line (or more if you are publishing more than one feed) to the <HEAD> of your HTML... just add the following tag:
 
<link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="XNAResources - Main News" href="/rss.asp" />
 
The title is what shows up as the title and the href is the location of your feed or feed generator... if you have more than one feed just list them in a row... they will all show up under the icon as seperate line items.
 
Hope that helps someone out there!


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New Link Directory at XNAResources.com

We have just updated our link directory here at XNAResources.com!  The new directory allows you to register for an account and then submit and maintain your own listings!  We get a pretty good deal of traffic from sites like Google to links in our link directory so hopefully this new directory will be a good way for all you developers out there to get some more traffic to your websites!  We haven't populated it with much yet... we want to get as many people as we can to submit and maintain their own stuff in the directory so we will give it a few days and then we will start adding some stuff in bulk... but please if you want to have your XNA stuff listed in our directory register for an account and add whatever you want!  Also... if you feel like there should be a better break down of the categories just let us know and we will rearrange things as everyone sees fit.  Jump on over to the new directory and check it out!

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Download the XBOX Live Achievement Unlocked sound!

The Major has just posted the XBOX 360 'Achievement Unlocked' sound to his blog... this might be very help to anyone out there trying to add achievements to their game... it could really help make those achievements feel real!  Download the sound from the Major's Blog here...


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Graphics for Programmers Tutorial Series Launched!

We have just launched the first installment in our new tutorial series called: Graphics for Programmers!  Hopefully we can help some of you one man team programmers out there add some graphical goodness to your XNA creations!  The first part in our tutorial series focuses on creating shiny stuff with Adobe Photoshop and is a great place to start if you are looking to spruce up your menu buttons and interface elements, etc... have a look at the new tutorial and let us know what you think!

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XNA GSE Update coming in April!

Some big news out of Microsoft today... XNA Game Studio Express will be getting and update in April!  Checkout the XNA Team Blog for a full list of the changes and additions to the upcoming version!



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XNA Creators Club Online Community is now LIVE!

Head on over to http://creators.xna.com and register for the XNA Creators Club Online community. There is all kinds of great stuff there including:

  • A brand new starter kit - Marblets
  • Several samples including a skinning (animation) sample using the XNA Framework Content Pipeline!
  • Downloadable sample games.
  • New developer forums.
  • Video tutorials.
  • Much, much, more!
Head over to the site and check it out!


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Details from the GDC about the Dream Build Play Contest

Some details about the Dream Build Play contest have creeped out the of the GDC... The contest will be offering over $40,000 in cash and prizes... the grad prize winner will not only get $10,000 but they will also have the opportunity to publish their creation on the XBLA!  They also talked about the release of Schizoid, the first XBLA game created using XNA... That makes you wonder how and Arcade title is being released when we still don't have access to network functions in XNA but maybe this is something from inside MS built using a new pre-release version of XNA... who knows... exciting times though.  Hopefully the entire community will start to pick things up as the GDC wraps up.



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David Edery on XBLA Strategy

Over at Gamasutra they have just posted a pretty interesting Q&A with Microsoft's David Edery, the Worldwide Games Portfolio Plannerfor XBLA... Edery gives the community some insight on what makes a good XBLA title... pretty much a must read if you are interested in taking the game you develop in XNA and moving onto some real commercial distribution on the 360 platform. Head on over and checkout the article...



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SpriteCache 2.0 RC Released

SpriteCache aims to be a complete replacement for XNA's SpriteBatch class. The objective is to create a more powerful and robust solution without sacrificing ease of use. There is little to no performance difference between the two classes.  Some of the features:
  • Translation, Scaling, Rotation
  • Colour modulation (tinting) of individual sprite corners
  • Easy shader attachment (on a per sprite basis!)
  • Draw calls similar to SpriteBatch
They have just released the 2.0 Release Candidate so jump on over to the site at CodePlex and check it out!


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Dream, Build, Play : Warmup Challenge

The folks over at Dream, Build,  Play have posted details on the first part of their contest.  In what they are calling the 'Warmup Challenge - Relatives of Spacewar', the goal is to create a game based on the SpaceWar Starter Kit.  From the "How to Play" page:

Create a game based on the Spacewar Starter Kit... either the Spacewar codebase or content, or both. The only requirement: Your game must be derived from the version of Spacewar that's a part of XNA Game Studio Express. Use as much or as little of the Spacewar Starter Kit as you like. Just remember that the relationship to the Spacewar Starter Kit must be obvious to our judges.

The five best entries will each receive a prize of $500, but you need to act fast, as the deadline for submitting your game  is Feb 28, 2007!



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