An Open Letter To Microsoft Regarding The Silverlight Game Development Community

Let me start by saying Silverlight is an awesome platform for game development. 

I've made 3 games with Silverlight so far (Diver, TireStorm, and Diver2) and each has been a joy to create.

 Diver  TireStorm  Diver2 

(Silverlight Games: Diver, Tire Storm, Diver 2)

However, something is missing. . . <pause for dramatic effect>. . .COMMUNITY.

Having developed Silverlight games for the last 2-3 years, I have a pretty good feel for the ecosystem that makes up the Silverlight game development community and currently I can only describe it as a bit scattered.

While there is a Silverlight game development forum on the Silverlight.net site and some good 3rd party websites and blogs (Silverlight Games 101, Mashooo, Cameron Albert’s Site),  there really is no single place for a Silverlight game developer to call home.

I am pretty confident the Silverlight game development community will quickly grow to become as large(or larger, if the Flash game dev community is any indication) as the XNA game development community.

For this reason, I hereby request, on behalf of all the future and present Silverlight game developers,  an awesome Silverlight game development portal along the lines of what exists for the XNA Creators Club Online community.

In fact, given that Silverlight and XNA are beginning to cozy up to one another and technology like Silver Sprite is working to blur the lines between Silverlight and XNA development, maybe the XNA Creators Club community site could just be expanded a bit to include us Silverlight game developers.

I would love to see the kind of education and resource content that is currently provided for the XNA developers also provided for the Silverlight game developers.

Just like the Windows Phone 7 Series breaks things into hubs of similar content, it makes sense to group all the Microsoft game development resources into their own "Hub".  (Just using the WP7 hubs as an analogy here)

With Silverlight adoption on the rise, it's just a matter of time before the big online flash portals begin to acknowledge Silverlight games. Given this and Windows Phone 7’s emphasis on games, I think Silverlight games are close to reaching a tipping point. 

Silverlight is a 1st class game development platform and us Silverlight game developers would love a cool place to hang out, share ideas and code, and create awesome games.

Thanks for your time and keep up the good work.

-Jeff Weber

http://www.farseergames.com

p.s. If you are a Silverlight game developer and you agree with the above.  Please help spread the word.