XNA is coming to Visual Basic!

Tonight at DevConnections, Senior Director Dave Mendlen announced that XNA support will be coming to Visual Basic. This is part of Microsoft’s co-evolution strategy, whereby we are providing equal access to Microsoft technologies for both C# and Visual Basic developers. XNA has been a top Visual Basic customer request for the past several years, so we are excited to bring this support to the product.

Stay tuned for the next couple of months when we will provide additional details on these plans.

[UPDATE] May 24: Windows Phone Developer Tools 7.1 ("Mango") Beta released today, including Visual Basic support for XNA and Windows Phone! Download the bits and then see the VB XNA documentation and VB WP7 code samples and starter kits to get started!


Comments (37)

  1. johnnyxp64 says:

    OMG! Finally! i wanted so badly to create XNA applications but i hated that i had to learn and use C# after 10+years working with VB!

    Thank you Microsoft thank you SO MUCH for listing to your customers!

    Question does this mean a new XNA version will be available for the VS 2008, or VS 2010? or we have to wait 2-3 years for the next visual studio and the .net 5? 🙁 i hope we can have this for .NET 4 ASAP!!!!!

  2. VJPPaz says:

    Your right johnny!

    Oh men.. I can't wait!! Now I can create a large game without having any problems about C laguage!

    NICE ONE!!!!!


  3. ..Tridex .. says:

    Great news, I have been writing an engine Levler 3Dsince XNA 2.0 with VB.NET, I will soon Launch a site with full Source code for vb.net community to enjoy, Learnt alot converting c# to vb.net . e.t.c…

    Seek and you will find a solution… but GREAT NEWS to VB CODERS AT LAST ..

  4. johnnyxp64 says:

    there was some site with some basic tutorials but the idea of not having true native support was so discouraging of working with XNA.

    XNA was made to make game development EASY and who had the "great idea" that c# was easier than VB.NET is a mystery yet to be answered!  >:(

    i am waiting for reply in my 1st post question on what .net will be available, and other details!


  5. Tim Overbay says:

    On one hand, I'm very excited about this news. As a die hard VB programmer, I've felt like the red-headed stepchild of DX/XNA development for years and years. Now Microsoft has finally decided to include VB in all their game development goodness.

    On the other hand, I'm saddened by this news. I feel like it's too little, too late. I finally gave in to Microsoft's bias toward C# and started using it exclusively for all new projects. Now I'm not so sure I want to go back to VB. I'm disappointed that Microsoft didn't do this a lot sooner.

    On the third hand, I feel a bit indifferent about this news. Precisely because of Microsoft's so-called 'co-evolution' strategy, it's now ridiculously easy to port code back and forth between VB and C#.

    So to sum it all up in one word: meh.

  6. BK says:

    Good thing I have just began VB classes.

  7. Paul Abot says:

    With all this co evolution, does this mean VB will finaly get UnSafe code blocks. It realy peevs me that I have to get someone else to write some code in C# just because you do not allow use to use Unsafe code blocks in VB.

    I know the languages are not exacly the same but unlike say Xml Literals that are not in C# lang, no unsafe code blocks = brick wall because the only way around it, is to use C#.


  8. Blake says:

    Great news.  The co-evolution strategy is going to keep me using VB which is what I have and want to be using.  I like the equal access to both languages, it really has made the choice of syntax a preference choice.

  9. Don says:

    It took too long.  HTML5 game development looks more promising now.

  10. OH RIGHT ON! Now, watch what this hungry, creative, grass-roots community can do with the boundless opportunities of the XBox Platform!!

  11. Rob says:

    haha @Don you are kidding right? wish you good luck then. If you have such game in thought to use html5 XNA isn't your needed platform. Sounds more like trolling to me.

  12. Great to see all this excitement & interest! Regarding the questions about timeframe & ship vehicle, we will disclose this information in the next couple of month. Looking forward to seeing the cool apps you all create with this. 🙂

  13. johnnyxp64 says:

    @Lisa thank you for your answer, but isnt there anything you can tell us now at least about the .Net framework that will be used or what's on the team's mind? we dont want release dates sure, but the answer "next months" dont you think its too generic? 🙂

    now if i am not mistaken the XNA is at version 4.0, that works with .NET 4.0, so are we gona see an update of this version that will expose all XNA funtions to VB programmers out of the box?

    please give us something! 😉

    p.s 3D R.T.S engine here i come…. 😀

  14. Don says:

    Hi @Rob, no trolling here, although the ice is off my favorite fishing spot now so trolling will begin soon on the water.  Don't know if you've had a chance to see some of the cool stuff coming from http://thinkpixellab.com/.  These guys are former MS folks and are doing a whole lot of cool.  MS is also sanctioning these types of development to promote IE9 – the pirates love daisies is another one to check out.  Numerous javascript game frameworks are being refined this year so greater game development will ensue in the browser.  I'm not against XNA by any means and am more likely now than before to give it a try to write something now that VB is finally supported, but it took almost five years for MS to support the VB developers on this.  Some things have changed.  My 2 cents.  See you on the water.

  15. S.Ashkan Taravati says:

    Good to see such activity!

    Instead of all,I'm not a professional VB programmer but I hate C Family Languages .and when I wanted to test how does XNA platform work,I saw that I need to be able to work with C# and my secondary problem will also be " exactly how to learn it" when no teacher and books are available in my area. You know,in my area,which is better not to say, most professional programs can work with C++ and some of them can work with VB and Foxpro and worse than all,I know nobody to ask for help.

    I live in ……        and I'm  …………..  years old.    



  16. Michel Posseth says:

    Great  !!  this is one of the things i am waiting for especially as  for Windows Phone development to be taken serious as a VB developer XNA is a must

  17. Robert M says:

    This is awesome!  I can't wait to start programming XNA!!

    What's XNA?

  18. The great part about this is that I had been a VB programmer for years and finally switched to C# because of XNA and WP7 Silverlight…now you could use VB for both!

  19. Rob Perkins says:

    It's about dang time. C# and VB parity were promised before .NET 1.0 was even out of Beta.

  20. Paul says:

    yes… YES!!!! THANK YOU!! Finally, this is like having a new lease of life 😉 I was dreading having to go right back to "hello world" in C after an entire adult life using VB.NET very productively. This is great, I also really hope to see VB adopted by the likes of Nvidia CUDA. VB = Focus on productive creativity rather than cryptic and overcomplex syntax ;-D

  21. abhimanyu says:

    gud news for me to learn it now…..

  22. Keiron says:

    Hi, great news about XNA coming to VB.Net, however could the guys over at MS give us some timescales as to when this will all come into being, even if its just a end of the year of middle of the year or were hoping to get this out by end/middle/2 months time, no need to tie it down to a specific dates just an idea please 🙂


  23. Hi All,

    We will ship VB XNA support in the Windows Phone Developer Tools "Mango" Beta release, due out next month. Can't wait to see all the awesome VB XNA and Windows Phone 7 applications you build with it!

    Lisa Feigenbaum

  24. createdbyx says:

    Too little too late IMO.  Now that I have invested in 200k+ lines of C# code.

  25. Arif says:

    Super Excited about XNA to VB.net . iam a vb.net programmer for 5 years now and looking forward for  XNA Game developement .I hope Enough tutorials avaialble online for XNA.:-)

  26. Keiron says:

    Excellent news Lisa, looking forward to checking out VB XNA 🙂

  27. JJMPSP says:

    Any further news on a realease ?

    Its been over a month and a half now since you posted this and i'm getting impatient lol.

  28. Xavier says:

    I'm impatient too ^^!! Waiting for news!

  29. Lisa Feigenbaum says:

    These bits are now live with today's Mango Beta release! For more information on XNA in Visual Basic, please download the following documentation: create.msdn.com/…/VBSupportForXNA

  30. Lisa Feigenbaum says:

    Here is the download link for Windows Phone Developer Tools 7.1 ("Mango") Beta:


  31. skytribe says:

    To answer Johnnyxp64 – I don't believe XNA was in the Visual Studio box for C#.  

    You still needed to download and install the XNA game studio items.    VB will now included as part of the same toolset. so you have a choice of either languages.  

    This is all part of the mango toolset which enables XNA targeting for Phone, XBox and PC.

    All this work is to allow developers in either VB/C# to target the same platforms.   The compilers team have been working with other teams to enable this to happen.

    The download link is out.  Its beta but this internally at Microsoft weve been using it and it seems stable and fun to target a new platform.

  32. JostaZA says:

    I have not seen an answer for if XNA game studio in VS2010 or 2008. I have both. Does this include development in Windows Forms apps or just WP7?

  33. @JostaZA – You can use Windows Phone Developer Tools "Mango" Beta as a standalone install, or with VS 2010. You can develop apps for the XBOX, PC or Phone.

  34. Shahid.Latif says:

    [need help]

    It was exiting to know that xna is finaly available for vb. I immediatly installed referesh version and started a project but it seems that my intellisense does not work and object browser always sys "updating…" between "UIAutomationClientsideProviders" and "XamlGeneratedNamespace".

    Please help me make it work.

  35. Spotty says:

    That sounds strange that you experiencing this problem.    

    Do you have a sample project which this is occuring on that you could send.  Are you targeting the phone/xbox or windows for your XNA project.   As you are the first to be reporting this issue I would possibly suggest making sure that VS2010 SP1 is correctly installed and then installing the WP7 RTW tools.    Also which version of VS are you using Express/Professional/Ultimate just so I can try to set up and environment here to attempt to repro.

    Loging a connect bug is the best way to ensure that a product team see's your issue and you will get a response.


  36. Nevin Waring says:

    Thank You Sooo much i am good with basic but not with c# this will help me alot!!! thanks…

  37. C# is syntax left over form the 1970's says:

    lets all keep in perspective, C# is based on a syntax that was developed in the 70's (the C language). Many things have changed in the programming world, a syntax like VB is the syntax of the future and will make your development more productive, easier to read and with less bugs. C# can't even support xml literals, doesn't have a background compiler and doesn't have anywhere near the full range of linq to sql or entities to sql keywords written into the language (so everything needs to be called using extension methods). But it seems most people thing C# is cooler because it has a cryptic syntax, and the users go to C# because they feel smarter/cooler – and the verbosity argument fails, because you spend most of your time staring at the code and you don't get to write code like you write an essay. so the verbosity doesn't really hurt you, especially if you make full use of the TAB button on the keyboard, you start to code something and pressing TAB will predict what your trying to write and fill it all in, then you can TAB through the areas you need & want to fill in. there goes the verbosity argument.

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