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stored in many different file formats. These art assets tend to change frequently in the course of game development. The Content Pipeline is designed to help you include such art assets in your game easily and automatically. An artist working on a car model can add the resulting file to the XNA Game Studio game project in the manner just demonstrated, assign the model a name, and choose an importer and content processor for it. Then, a developer who wants to use the car can simply load it by name using a call to ContentManager.Load. This simple flow lets the artist focus on creating assets and the developer focus on using them, without either having to spend time worrying about content transformation. The XNA Content Pipeline is readily integrated into your XNA Game Studio project. You just add the resource to your project and when you compile it, the data is being imported and converted in a XNB (XNA Binary) file using a Content Importer. This XNB file is automatically generated for the desired platform.

Content Importers are implemented as assemblies and you can use custom importers and processors that you or other third parties develop in addition to the standard ones provided by XNA Game Studio.

Some of standard Content Importers include the following file types (partial list):

Autodesk FBX format (.fbx)

DirectX Effect file format (.fx)

Font description specified in a .spritefont file

Texture file. The following types are supported: .bmp, .dds, .dib, .hdr, .jpg, .pfm, .png, .ppm, and .tga

Game audio specified in the Microsoft Cross-Platform Audio Creation Tool (XACT) format (.xap).


Examine the solution explorer after performing the previous step, it should now look like this:

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