Microsoft has confirmed that they don't plan to support the XNA Game Studio, the development suite designed to let indie developers create Xbox 360 and Windows Phone-compatible titles, with any new versions going forward. Could this be the death knell for the Xbox Live Indie Games scene, or perhaps the precursor to a new Windows 8-focused development environment?
“XNA Game Studio remains a supported toolset for developing games for Xbox 360, Windows and Windows Phone,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Polygon, following a leaked internal email. “Many developers have found financial success creating Xbox LIVE Indie Games using XNA. However, there are no plans for future versions of the XNA product.”
This could be bad news for the developers who use XNA to create Xbox Live Indie Games and Windows Phone titles, but on the flip-side, perhaps the advent of Windows 8 means that new software is in the pipeline? We have yet to discover whether the next-generation Xbox will support the indie games service, especially since Microsoft were wiling to publicise the service to any great degree.
We've reached out to several indie developers for comment - I'll update as and when we hear back.