A lot of XNA users get flak for it because lots of older and simpler video cards won’t run it. A good example of this is Intel HD graphics, which are common on laptops.
Did you know you can fix this? Well you’re about to.
XNA has two profiles. Each profile has different minimum requirements, and as a result different capabilities. If you were developing a retail game you might stop me here and say “But FireSlash, I need shader model 3.0!”. However, in almost all Ludum Dare cases you’re never going to break outside of the XNA Reach profile’s limitations. These limitations are effectively the limits of DirectX 9, which are fairly generous for most games.
The best part of this is that using Reach is very easy; especially if you’re using the XNA content pipeline. Simply right click on your project
Now click properties. You’ll get defaulted to the XNA studio tab (probably, if not it’s a mere click away!) where you can change your profile to Reach. Do this early in your project as it saves you possible issues later with recompiling textures.
Also note that if you use any kind of engine or supporting libraries, you’ll need to adjust the profile there as well. If your engine has compiled textures in HiDef you’ll need to remove these and recompile them for Reach. I suggest doing this before you start as it saves time and rage later.