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What's New in XNA Game Studio 4.0

Describes new features and changes in XNA Game Studio 4.0.

Overview of New Features

Develop Games for Windows Phone

XNA Game Studio and the XNA Framework are designed for cross-platform gaming scenarios with support for Windows Phone, Xbox 360, and Windows-based PCs. This allows you to target more platforms from the same code base. It also allows developers to focus game design for each platform on real device differences such as capabilities and experience, as opposed to writing with different frameworks for each targeted device.

Tasks

Developing Windows Phone Games
Describes how to develop games for Windows Phone.
Migrating from Zune to Windows Phone
Discusses how to migrate games written for Zune and Zune HD on XNA Game Studio 3.1 to Windows Phone with XNA Game Studio 4.0 Refresh.

Leverage Windows Phone-specific Features Through Silverlight

When you develop games for Windows Phone, you can leverage platform-specific features such as location, accelerometer, and vibration interfaces that are provided through Silverlight 4.0. Similarly, most of the XNA Framework can be accessed from Silverlight applications.

Tasks

Retrieving Accelerometer Input (Windows Phone)
Demonstrates how to detect and use accelerometer input in an XNA Game Studio game on Windows Phone.

On Windows Phone, writable user storage is handled by Silverlight, not by XNA Game Studio. You can use the XNA Game Studio content pipeline to preprocess read-only game assets that are accessed by the content manager at run time.

Concepts

What Is Storage?
Storage refers to memory locations used for reading and writing data.

Tasks

Writing Data (Windows Phone)
Describes how to save game data on Windows Phone.
Adding Game Data Files to Title Storage
Describes how to add game data files to the title storage location.
Reading Game Data from Title Storage
Describes how to load game data from the title storage location.
XML Elements for XMLImporter
Describes the elements of an XML file that can be processed by the XmlImporter Class.
Adding an XML Content File to a Visual Studio Project
Describes how to add custom game data as an XML file through the Content Pipeline.
Loading XML Content at Runtime
Describes how to load custom game data at game runtime through the Content Pipeline.
Using an XML File to Specify Content
Describes how to use XML files for custom game data through the Content Pipeline.
Creating an XML File
Describes how to use IntermediateSerializer from a Windows application to generate XML content to add to a XNA Game Studio application.

Simplified Graphics Interfaces

XNA Game Studio 4.0 introduces the concept of XNA Framework profiles. These profiles (Reach and HiDef) allow you to create a clear development environment while targeting broadly or for specific platform releases. The Reach profile is designed for compatibility across the largest possible range of devices, including Windows Phone, Windows-based PCs, and Xbox 360 consoles. Choosing the HiDef platform in your development environment allows you to use platform showcase features.

Both the Reach and HiDef profiles are hardware accelerated.

Concepts

What Is a Profile?
A profile is a feature set that is implemented in hardware. The Reach profile implements high-level shader language (HLSL) Shader Model 2.0 and the HiDef profile implements HLSL Shader Model 3.0.

Reference

GraphicsDeviceInformation.GraphicsProfile Property
Gets the graphics profile, which determines the graphics feature set.
GraphicsDeviceManager.GraphicsProfile Property
Gets the graphics profile, which determines the graphics feature set.
GraphicsAdapter.IsProfileSupported Method
Tests to see if the adapter supports the requested profile.
ContentWriter.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
ContentProcessorContext.TargetProfile Property
Gets the current content build target profile.
BuildContent.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
BuildXact.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
CleanContent.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.

Configurable Effects

Game Studio 4.0 introduces new and updated configurable effects that will add more variety to your rendering options. These configurable effects are available for both Reach and HiDef profiles and for all platforms, including Windows Phone, Windows-based PCs, and Xbox 360 consoles.

  • Basic Effects—A basic effect includes transforms and basic lighting for Blinn-Phong shading. You have the option of adding up to three more directional lights, fog, and a texture. Use one light for the fastest performance, and use three lights for more interesting 3D lighting.
  • Dual-Texture Effects—A dual-texture effect uses two textures with two independent sets of texture coordinates. When you blend the two textures, you generate a lot more visual complexity if the first texture contains the basic color or detail, and the second texture contains complex lighting.
  • Alpha-Test Effects—An alpha-test effect uses a reference alpha and an alpha function to implement alpha testing. This can greatly improve rendering performance by only updating pixels where objects are being drawn in a scene. Alpha testing is common when depth/stencil buffers are not used.
  • Skinned Effects—A skinned effect uses bones and weights to influence vertex positions, that is, to move or deform an object. This works very well for character animation and instancing. The effect supports up to 72 bones, with up to 4 weights per bone.
  • Environment-Map Effects—An environment-map effect uses a diffuse texture to color or detail an object, and a cube map texture containing an environment map to shade the object as a result of the environment. Because the object reflects the scene, this makes the object look more like it is in a real scene. Also, you can use the fresnel parameter to tune the amount of light reflected (shininess) based on the geometry of the surface.

Concepts

What Is a Configurable Effect?
A configurable effect is an optimized rendering effect designed for Windows, Xbox 360, and Windows Phone. A configurable effect is created using a built-in object with options for user configuration.
What Is an Effect?
An effect initializes the graphics pipeline for performing transforms, lighting, applying textures, and adding per-pixel visual effects such as a glow or a lens flare. Under the covers, an effect implements at least one shader for processing vertices and at least one shader for processing pixels.

Tasks

Creating a Custom Effect
Demonstrates how to create a custom effect that transforms an object and applies a texture.

Reference

BasicEffect Class
Contains a basic rendering effect.
SkinnedEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect for rendering skinned character models.
EnvironmentMapEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports environment mapping.
DualTextureEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports two-layer multitexturing.
AlphaTestEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports alpha testing.

Built-in State Objects

Many of the individual state properties have been replaced with a more organized set of immutable state objects. There are fewer states to manage.

Tasks

Creating a State Object
Demonstrates how to create a state object using any of the state object classes: BlendState, DepthStencilState, RasterizerState, or SamplerState.

ConceptsReference

What Is Blend State?
Blend state controls how color and alpha values are blended when combining rendered data with existing render target data.
What Is Depth Stencil State?
Depth stencil state controls how the depth buffer and the stencil buffer are used.
BlendState Class
Contains blend state for the device.
DepthStencilState Class
Contains depth-stencil state for the device.
GraphicsDevice.RasterizerState Property
Gets or sets rasterizer state. The default value is RasterizerState.CullCounterClockwise.
SamplerState Class
Contains sampler state, which determines how to sample texture data.

System Support for Scalars and Orientation

With new system support for scalars and orientation, you can write your game without worrying about native resolution or orientation. Scalars can significantly improve game performance. This support comes automatically when you use the XNA Framework.

Reference

DisplayOrientation Enumeration
Defines the display orientation.
PresentationParameters.DisplayOrientation Property
Gets or sets the orientation of the display. The default value is DisplayOrientation.Default, which means orientation is determined automatically from your BackBufferWidth and BackBufferHeight.
GraphicsDeviceManager.SupportedOrientations Property
Gets or sets the display orientations that are available if automatic rotation and scaling is enabled.
GraphicsDeviceManager.DefaultBackBufferHeight Field
Specifies the default minimum back-buffer height.
GameWindow.CurrentOrientation Property
Gets the current display orientation, which reflects the physical orientation of the phone in the user's hand.
GameWindow.OrientationChanged Event
Describes the event raised when the display orientation of the GameWindow changes. When this event occurs, the XNA Framework automatically adjusts the game orientation based on the value specified by the developer with SupportedOrientations.
GameWindow.OnOrientationChanged Method
Called when the GameWindow display orientation changes.
GameWindow.SetSupportedOrientations Method
Sets the supported display orientations.
TouchPanel.DisplayOrientation Property
Gets or sets the display orientation of the touch panel.
TouchPanel.DisplayWidth Property
Gets or sets the display width of the touch panel.
TouchPanel.DisplayHeight Property
Gets or sets the display height of the touch panel.

Cross-Platform Input API

While the design of an input strategy for your game is likely to be highly specific to a particular game or device experience, the XNA Framework provides a cross-platform input interface where an input capability is likely to be available across multiple platforms. In this release, multitouch support has been added for Windows and Windows Phone-based applications that use the XNA Framework. The XNA Framework input classes are orientation-aware and resolution-aware, allowing for greater portability of code and fewer #ifdefs in your game design.

Tasks

Working with Touch Input (Windows Phone)
Demonstrates how to detect and use multitouch input in an XNA game.

Reference

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Input.Touch
Contains classes that enable access to touch-based input on devices that support it.
TouchPanel
Provides methods for retrieving touch panel device information.
TouchPanelCapabilities
Provides access to information about the capabilities of the touch input device.
TouchLocation
Provides methods and properties for interacting with a touch location on a touch screen device.
TouchLocationState
Defines the possible states of a touch location.

Enhanced Audio Support

The XNA Framework Audio namespace now allows for audio capture and playback through the Microphone and DynamicSoundEffect classes. You now have the ability to play back synthesized or buffered audio, to capture audio through a microphone or Bluetooth headset, and to play it through a headset or speakers.

Reference

Microphone Class
Provides properties, methods, and fields and events for capturing audio data with microphones.
DynamicSoundEffectInstance Class
Provides properties, methods, and events for play back of the audio buffer.

Music and Picture Enumeration and Video Playback

You can now do the following:

  • Use a uniform resource location to play songs.

  • Select, edit, and publish photos.

  • Play back video by using an interface that allows you to show or hide the video controls.

Tasks

Playing a Song from a URI
Demonstrates how to use the MediaPlayer to play a song from a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI).

Reference

Song.FromUri Method
Constructs a new Song object based on the specified URI.
MediaLibrary.SavePicture Method
Saves the image to the media library.

New Classes and Methods

Microsoft.Xna.Framework

Color has moved from the Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Graphics namespace to Microsoft.Xna.Framework.

Color Structure
Represents a four-component color using red, green, blue, and alpha data.
GraphicsDeviceInformation.GraphicsProfile Property
Gets the graphics profile, which determines the graphics feature set.
GraphicsDeviceManager.GraphicsProfile Property
Gets the graphics profile, which determines the graphics feature set.
TitleContainer Class
Provides file stream access to the title's default storage location.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Audio

DynamicSoundEffectInstance Class
Provides properties, methods, and events for play back of the audio buffer.
Microphone Class
Provides properties, methods, and fields and events for capturing audio data with microphones.
NoMicrophoneConnectedException Class
The exception that is thrown when Microphone API calls are made on a disconnected microphone.
AudioChannels Enumeration
Defines the number of channels in the audio data.
MicrophoneState Enumeration
Current state of the Microphone audio capture (started or stopped).
SoundEffect.FromStream Method
Creates a SoundEffect object based on the specified data stream.
SoundEffect.GetSampleDuration Method
Returns the sample duration based on the specified sample size and sample rate.
SoundEffect.GetSampleSizeInBytes Method
Returns the size of the audio sample based on duration, sample rate, and audio channels.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Input.Touch

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Input.Touch Namespace
Contains classes that enable access to touch-based input on devices that support it.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Media

Album.GetAlbumArt Method
Returns the stream that contains the album art image data.
MediaLibrary.SavePicture Method
Saves the image to the media library.
Picture.GetImage Method
Returns the stream that contains the image data.
Picture.GetThumbnail Method
Returns the stream that contains the picture's thumbnail image data.
Song.FromUri Method
Constructs a new Song object based on the specified URI.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Graphics.PackedVector

Bgra4444 Structure
Packed vector type containing unsigned normalized values, ranging from 0 to 1, using 4 bits each for x, y, z, and w.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Storage

Storage device selection has moved from the GamerServices namespace to the Storage namespace.

StorageDevice.BeginShowSelector Method
Overloaded methods for showing the storage device selector asynchronously.
StorageDevice.EndShowSelector Method
Ends the display of the storage selector user interface.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Content.Pipeline

Effect compilation from the Framework to the Content Pipeline.

In This Section

ContentWriter.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
AlphaTestMaterialContent Class
Provides properties for modifying an effect that supports alpha testing.
DualTextureMaterialContent Class
Provides properties for modifying an effect that supports two-layer multitexturing.
EffectMaterialContent.CompiledEffect Property
Gets or sets the compiled Effect.
EnvironmentMapMaterialContent Class
Provides properties for modifying an effect that supports environment mapping.
SkinnedMaterialContent Class
Provides properties for modifying an effect for rendering skinned character models.
ContentImporterContext Constructor
Initializes a new instance of ContentImporterContext.
ContentProcessorContext Constructor
Initializes a new instance of ContentProcessorContext.
ContentProcessorContext.TargetProfile Property
Gets the current content build target profile.
EffectImporter Class
Provides methods for reading effect (.fx) files for use in the Content Pipeline.
FbxImporter Class
Provides methods for reading AutoDesk (.fbx) files for use in the Content Pipeline.
Mp3Importer Class
Provides methods for reading MP3 audio files for use in the Content Pipeline.
TextureImporter Class
Provides methods for reading texture files for use in the Content Pipeline.
WavImporter Class
Provides methods for reading .wav audio files for use in the Content Pipeline.
WmaImporter Class
Provides methods for reading Windows Media Audio (.wma) files for use in the Content Pipeline.
WmvImporter Class
Provides methods for reading Windows Media Video (.wmv) files for use in the Content Pipeline.
XImporter Class
Provides methods for reading DirectX Object (.x) files for use in the Content Pipeline.
TargetPlatform Enumeration
Identifiers for the target platform.
CompiledEffectContent Class
Represents a compiled Effect.
EffectProcessor.DebugMode Property
The debug mode for compiling effects.
EffectProcessor.Defines Property
Define assignments for the effect.
FontTextureProcessor.PremultiplyAlpha Property
Specifies whether alpha premultiply of font textures is enabled.
MaterialProcessor.DefaultEffect Property
The default effect type for this instance of MaterialProcessor.
MaterialProcessor.PremultiplyTextureAlpha Property
Specifies whether alpha premultiply of textures is enabled.
ModelMeshPartContent.IndexBuffer Property
Gets the index buffer associated with this mesh part.
ModelMeshPartContent.VertexBuffer Property
Gets the vertex buffer associated with this mesh part.
ModelMeshPartContent.VertexOffset Property
Gets the offset, in bytes, from the first index of the of vertex buffer for this mesh part.
ModelProcessor.DefaultEffect Property
The default effect type for this instance of ModelProcessor.
ModelProcessor.PremultiplyTextureAlpha Property
Specifies whether alpha premultiply of textures is enabled.
TextureProcessor.PremultiplyAlpha Property
Specifies whether alpha premultiply of textures is enabled.
VertexBufferContent.VertexDeclaration Property
Gets the associated VertexDeclarationContent object.
BuildContent.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
BuildXact.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.
CleanContent.TargetProfile Property
Gets or sets the target graphics profile.

Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Graphics

  • New overloads to SpriteBatch.Begin provide an explicit way to draw sprites with a custom pixel shader.
  • VertexBuffers are now strongly typed. VertexDeclaration usage has changed in XNA Game Studio 4.0. Each VertexBuffer now has an associated VertexDeclaration, which becomes immutable after the buffer is created, allowing for the XNA Framework to automatically adjust the bit layout of vertex data as required for different platforms.

BlendState Class
Contains blend state for the device.
DepthStencilState Class
Contains depth-stencil state for the device.
GraphicsDevice.RasterizerState Property
Gets or sets rasterizer state. The default value is RasterizerState.CullCounterClockwise.
SamplerState Class
Contains sampler state, which determines how to sample texture data.
AlphaTestEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports alpha testing.
BasicEffect Class
Contains a basic rendering effect.
DirectionalLight Class
Creates a DirectionalLight object.
DualTextureEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports two-layer multitexturing.
Effect.Clone Method
Copies data from an existing object to this object.
Effect.OnApply Method
Applies the effect state just prior to rendering the effect.
EffectMaterial Class
Contains an effect subclass which is used to load data for an EffectMaterialContent type.
EffectPass.Apply Method
Begins this pass.
EnvironmentMapEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect that supports environment mapping.
GraphicsAdapter.IsProfileSupported Method
Tests to see if the adapter supports the requested profile.
GraphicsAdapter.QueryBackBufferFormat Method
Queries the adapter for support for the requested back buffer format.
GraphicsAdapter.QueryRenderTargetFormat Method
Queries the adapter for support for the requested render target format.
GraphicsAdapter.UseNullDevice Property
Gets or sets a NULL device.
GraphicsAdapter.UseReferenceDevice Property
Gets or sets a reference device.
GraphicsDevice.Clear Method
Clears resource buffers.
GraphicsDevice.DrawInstancedPrimitives Method
Draws a series of instanced models.
GraphicsDevice.DrawUserIndexedPrimitives Method
Renders geometric primitives.
GraphicsDevice.DrawUserPrimitives Method
Renders geometric primitives.
GraphicsDevice.GetBackBufferData Method
Gets the contents of the back buffer.
GraphicsDevice.GetRenderTargets Method
Gets a render target surface.
GraphicsDevice.GetVertexBuffers Method
Gets the vertex buffers.
GraphicsDevice.SetRenderTargets Method
Sets an array of render targets.
GraphicsDevice.SetVertexBuffer Method
Sets or binds a vertex buffer to a device.
GraphicsDevice.SetVertexBuffers Method
Sets the vertex buffers.
GraphicsDevice.Adapter Property
Gets the graphics adapter.
GraphicsDevice.BlendFactor Property
Gets or sets the color used for a constant-blend factor during alpha blending. The default value is Color.White.
GraphicsDevice.BlendState Property
Gets or sets a system-defined instance of a blend state object initialized for alpha blending. The default value is BlendState.Opaque.
GraphicsDevice.DepthStencilState Property
Gets or sets a system-defined instance of a depth-stencil state object. The default value is DepthStencilState.Default.
GraphicsDevice.GraphicsProfile Property
Gets the graphics profile. The default value is GraphicsProfile.Reach.
GraphicsDevice.MultiSampleMask Property
Gets or sets a bitmask controlling modification of the samples in a multisample render target. The default value is -1 (0xffffffff).
GraphicsDevice.ReferenceStencil Property
Gets or sets a reference value for stencil testing. The default value is zero.
IEffectFog Interface
Gets or sets fog parameters for the current effect.
IEffectLights Interface
Gets or sets lighting parameters for the current effect.
IEffectMatrices Interface
Gets or sets transformation matrix parameters for the current effect.
IndexBuffer.IndexCount Property
Gets the number of indices in this buffer.
IVertexType Interface
Vertex type interface which is implemented by a custom vertex type structure.
Model.Draw Method
Render a model after applying the matrix transformations.
ModelMeshPart.IndexBuffer Property
Gets the index buffer for this mesh part.
ModelMeshPart.VertexBuffer Property
Gets the vertex buffer for this mesh part.
ModelMeshPart.VertexOffset Property
Gets the offset (in vertices) from the top of vertex buffer.
NoSuitableGraphicsDeviceException Class
Thrown when no available graphics device fits the given device preferences.
PresentationParameters.Bounds Property
Gets the size of this resource.
PresentationParameters.DepthStencilFormat Property
Gets or sets the depth stencil data format.
PresentationParameters.MultiSampleCount Property
Gets or sets a value indicating the number of sample locations during multisampling.
RasterizerState Class
Contains rasterizer state, which determines how to convert vector data (shapes) into raster data (pixels).
RenderTarget2D Class
Contains a 2D texture that can be used as a render target.
RenderTargetBinding Structure
Binds an array of render targets.
RenderTargetCube Class
Represents a cubic texture resource that will be written to at the end of a render pass.
SkinnedEffect Class
Contains a configurable effect for rendering skinned character models.
SpriteBatch.Begin Method
Begins a sprite batch operation.
SpriteBatch.Dispose Method
Releases unmanaged resources used by this object.
SpriteBatch.DrawString Method
Adds a string to a batch of sprites to be rendered.
SpriteBatch.Draw Method
Adds a sprite to a batch of sprites to be rendered.
SpriteFont Class
Represents a font texture.
Texture.Format Property
Gets the format of the texture data.
Texture2D Constructor
Creates an uninitialized Texture2D resource of the specified dimensions. To initialize a Texture2D from an existing file, see the static method ContentManager.Load.
Texture2D.FromStream Method
Methods for loading an image.
Texture2D.SaveAsJpeg Method
Saves texture data as a .jpg.
Texture2D.SaveAsPng Method
Saves texture data as a .png.
Texture2D.SetData Method
Sets data to the texture.
Texture2D.Bounds Property
Gets the size of this resource.
Texture3D Constructor
Creates a new instance of this object.
Texture3D.SetData Method
Sets data.
VertexBuffer Constructor
Creates an instance of this object.
VertexBuffer.VertexCount Property
Gets the number of vertices.
VertexBuffer.VertexDeclaration Property
Defines per-vertex data in a buffer.
VertexBufferBinding Structure
Binding structure that specifies a vertex buffer and other per-vertex parameters (such as offset and instancing) for a graphics device.
VertexDeclaration Class
A vertex declaration, which defines per-vertex data.
VertexElement Constructor
Initializes a new instance of the VertexElement class.
VertexPositionColor Constructor
Initializes a new instance of the VertexPositionColor class.
VertexPositionColor.Color Field
The vertex color.
VertexPositionColor.Position Field
XYZ position.
VertexPositionColor.VertexDeclaration Field
Vertex declaration, which defines per-vertex data.
VertexPositionColorTexture Structure
Describes a custom vertex format structure that contains position, color, and one set of texture coordinates.
VertexPositionNormalTexture Structure
Describes a custom vertex format structure that contains position, normal data, and one set of texture coordinates.
VertexPositionTexture Structure
Describes a custom vertex format structure that contains position and one set of texture coordinates.
Viewport Constructor
Creates an instance of this class.
Viewport.Bounds Property
Gets the size of this resource.
GraphicsProfile Enumeration
Identifies the set of supported devices for the game based on device capabilities.

New In the XNA Game Studio Preview Refresh

New Code Samples, Conceptual Content, and Tutorials

Media

Playing a Song from a URI
Demonstrates how to use the MediaPlayer to play a song from a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI).

Storage and Content Pipeline

Writing Data (Windows Phone)
Describes how to save game data on Windows Phone.
Adding Game Data Files to Title Storage
Describes how to add game data files to the title storage location.
Reading Game Data from Title Storage
Describes how to load game data from the title storage location.
XML Elements for XMLImporter
Describes the elements of an XML file that can be processed by the XmlImporter Class.
Adding an XML Content File to a Visual Studio Project
Describes how to add custom game data as an XML file through the Content Pipeline.
Loading XML Content at Runtime
Describes how to load custom game data at game runtime through the Content Pipeline.
Using an XML File to Specify Content
Describes how to use XML files for custom game data through the Content Pipeline.
Creating an XML File
Describes how to use IntermediateSerializer from a Windows application to generate XML content to add to a XNA Game Studio application.

Graphics

What Is Blend State?
Blend state controls how color and alpha values are blended when combining rendered data with existing render target data.
What Is Depth Stencil State?
Depth stencil state controls how the depth buffer and the stencil buffer are used.
What Is a Back Buffer?
A back buffer is a render target whose contents will be sent to the device when GraphicsDevice.Present is called.
What Is a Configurable Effect?
A configurable effect is an optimized rendering effect designed for Windows, Xbox 360, and Windows Phone. A configurable effect is created using a built-in object with options for user configuration.
What Is an Effect?
An effect initializes the graphics pipeline for performing transforms, lighting, applying textures, and adding per-pixel visual effects such as a glow or a lens flare. Under the covers, an effect implements at least one shader for processing vertices and at least one shader for processing pixels.
What Is a Profile?
A profile is a feature set that is implemented in hardware. The Reach profile implements high-level shader language (HLSL) Shader Model 2.0 and the HiDef profile implements HLSL Shader Model 3.0.
What Is Rasterizer State?
Rasterizer state determines how to render 3D data such as position, color, and texture onto a 2D surface.
What Is a Render Target?
A render target is a memory buffer for rendering pixels. One common use for a render target is offscreen rendering.
What Is Sampler State?
Sampler state determines how texture data is sampled using texture addressing modes, filtering, and level of detail.
What Is a View Frustum?
A view frustum is a 3D volume that defines how models are projected from camera space to projection space. Objects must be positioned within the 3D volume to be visible.
What Is a Viewport?
A viewport is a 2D rectangle that defines the size of the rendering surface onto which a 3D scene is projected.

New Samples Upgraded to XNA Game Studio 4.0

Drawing 3D Primitives using Lists or Strips
Demonstrates how to draw 3D primitives using lines and triangles arranged as strips or lists.
Using a Basic Effect with Texturing
Demonstrates how to create and draw a simple quad—two triangles that form a rectangle or square—using DrawUserIndexedPrimitives.
Creating a Custom Effect
Demonstrates how to create a custom effect that transforms an object and applies a texture.
Loading Content Within a Game Library
Demonstrates how to load content within a Game Library.
Animating a Sprite
Demonstrates how to animate a sprite from a texture using a custom class.
What Is a Sprite?
Summarizes the basics of using sprites.
Drawing a Masked Sprite over a Background
Demonstrates how to draw a foreground and background sprite using the SpriteBatch class, where only part of the foreground sprite masks the background.
Drawing Text with a Sprite
Demonstrates how to import a SpriteFont into a project and to draw text using DrawString.
Making a Scrolling Background
Demonstrates how to draw a scrolling background sprite using the SpriteBatch class.
Rotating a Sprite
Demonstrates how to rotate a sprite around its center.
Rotating a Group of Sprites
Demonstrates how to rotate a group of sprites around a single point.
Scaling a Sprite
Demonstrates how to scale a sprite using a uniform scale.
Scaling Sprites Based On Screen Size
Demonstrates how to scale sprites using a matrix that is created based on the viewport width.
Tinting a Sprite
Demonstrates how to tint a sprite using a Color value.
Dynamically Updating Vertex Data
Describes techniques for dynamically updating vertex data in an XNA Framework game.

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