GDC 09: New hardware doubles memory as platform holder promises to â??reduce risk of developmentâ??

Microsoft launches updated Xbox 360 dev kit

Microsoft’s XNA division has announced a new model Xbox 360 developement and test kit hardware, promising better development and debugging tools in the future.

In addition to a redesigned launcher interface, which is aimed to give developers more information, Microsoft has doubled the amount of memory in the machine to help with debugging, which the company plans to utilise with upcoming development tools.

“We’re at an interesting point in the games industry where the cost of making a game has been rising tremendously,” said XNA program manager Boyd Multerer when we caught up with him prior to the announcement.

“Game teams are taking on a lot of risk to make bigger and better titles. So what we’ve been thinking about is how to lower that risk. That’s where this new Xbox development kit comes in – it’s setting the stage for the next generation of tools that will help make the best games possible.

“A typical situation with developing for a consoles is that you’re using every byte of available capacity – so where are the debugging tools going to sit? So this is the first step in having a new generation of Xbox development kit, which is all about trying to reduce cost, particularly in art development.”

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