GarageGames’ XNA-based game engine, Torque X, has been upgraded to version 2.0.
The update brings the engine up to the full XNA 2.0 specification, giving users full access to all of the new upgrades that have been part of the latest version of Microsoft’s managed framework released in late 2007 such as improved parity between Windows and Xbox 360 projects, support for the full range of Visual Studio 2005 versions, multiple render targets, faster rendering and the new smoother deployment process.
It also proves a full, stable release of the new 3D features of the engine – which have been present but in a ‘beta’ state since version 1.5 – including support for GarageGames’ proprietary model format DTS, used by its other engines, and the more common FBX, X and XSI model formats.
Currently the only editor available for the application is an updated version of the old 2D drag-and-drop Torque X Builder, although the company has announced that it is currently developing a 3D world editor for the engine, and hopes to release it soon. Those willing to get their hands dirty without the editor, though, can enjoy features like chunked LOD terrains with clip map texturing, rigid body physics and collision, post processing effects and a 3D particle system.
"It’s amazing to see how far XNA development has come in such a short time. When we partnered with Microsoft to develop Torque X in 2006, the game development community was still pretty skeptical of managed code," said Brett Seyler, GarageGames VP of business development.
"Last year’s Dream Build Play winners looked awesome and now with true, full-featured game engines to speed and ease development even further, I expect we’ll see Torque X and XNA game development really thrive in 2008."