Microsoft has announced XNA Game Studio 2.0, deciding to merge the XNA Game Studio line into one product. Formerly split in “professional” and “express” versions, amateur developers were working on software different than their pro counterparts. Merging the programs will rid users of the need to relearn or retool as they become licensed XNA developers. Pros will simply have access to a more extensive plugin library.
The other big improvement is that all users will be able to connect to LIVE with full matchmaking and voice chat support. Both moves seem positive for the development platform, with a strategy not unlike that used for quite some time in graphics development software.