Before you can submit to the Windows Phone Store, you will have to have created your Developers account (instructions can be found here). Once you have that set up, to upload your app to the store, you should click the Dashboard button then select the Submit App option from the left, which will then take you to the following page:
You can only click the first button labelled App Info at this point, so select that to be taken to the principle page for your app.
WARNING! Make sure that your final xap for submission to the store was built with the Windows Phone section of the Preferences in GameMaker:Studio set to Device otherwise your submission to the Windows Store will fail.
The App Info page requires you to supply the following information:
App Alias - This is the internal app store name. You can make this anything you wish, but it is recommended that you name your app the same as you have it in the GameMaker:StudioGlobal Game Settings.
Category - Choose the category for your game from the short, general list.
Sub-Category - Further define the type of app you are uploading. Both this and the Category above will be used to classify your app on the store and for more optimised searching.
After that basic information, you can give your app a Base Price (assuming you have supplied the necessary documentation as mentioned in the topic Windows Phone Store Registration). This base price is what Microsoft will use to define the prices across all the different countries where their store will be selling your app.
NOTE: If you wish your app to be free you can leave this as $0.00.
At the moment GameMaker:Studio does not support Trial Apps so you should leave that option un-checked too before continuing.
The next set of options relate to the marketing of your game, and unless your game deals with subjects that may be considered offensive by certain countries (for example, it has references to alcohol), you can leave this is Distribute to all markets. For more information on marketing and country limits, please see this article from the Microsoft Library on Content policies for Windows Phone.
With this basic info added, you can now go on to the next section by clicking the Save button at the bottom of the page, but please note that there are a couple of advanced options that can be set here by clicking on the More Options tag, which may also be of interest to you (although they are not essential to the uploading).
More App Info Options
From this sub-section of the App Info you can get at some advanced options for your app:
The first part of this section, Distribution Channels, gives you the option to publish to the store or to create a Beta app. If you select Beta you will then have to add in the email address' of all the participants in the beta testing of your game (they must all be registered with Microsoft) and you can then distribute your app to these select few.
NOTE: This option will require you to ''re-submit'' the app once the beta testing stage has finalised.
If you choose the Public Store, you can also conduct a type of open beta by choosing to hide the app from people searching the store. This means that any searches for the app or for the tags you have associated with it will not show your game, but you can distribute the link yourself for the game and invite anyone to test it. In this way you can still do app testing and will not need to re-submit the app when you wish to show it publicly as it is a simple thing to un-flag this option later.
The next part is for the actual timing of publishing for your app. The default option here is Automatically, meaning that the moment your app has passed the certification process it will be "live" on the store, however if you wish to launch your app on several platforms at once and at the same time (or are waiting for a specific date), you can choose to publish Manually at the time of your choosing.
Finally, depending on what your app actually is for, you may be able to add in ratings certificates. This is not an essential part of the process, but it will certainly help people to identify your app and decide whether it is apt for their situation.
If you’re distributing your app to the US, Canada, or both, an online tool for creating certificates is simple to use and free. You can find it on the ESRB web site.
If you’re distributing to regions in Europe, you can also get your game rated using this free online tool from PEGI.
For other countries, please see the Microsoft Library page on Game Ratings. Note that some countries can charge for their ratings!
Upload And Describe Your XAP
This section is for uploading the actual game binary to the store. Here there are a number of details that you must fill in:
Upload XAP - Here you select the xap file to upload. Note that the maximum size for a XAP file is 255 MB.
XAP Version Number - The current version of the xap file (should be the same as that specified in the GameMaker:StudioGlobal game Settings).
Once your xap is successfully uploaded, the Windows Phone Dev Centre will list key details about it in the XAP details detected from file drop-down, which can be used to verify that all the permissions and information is correct before continuing.
After this comes the Languages section where you can set the different languages that your app will be shown as supporting on the Store. The default language is English, but you can add more, with each one having it's own description and title etc... Note that on the right of this section is the option More Options Per Language. This will permit you to add keywords (tags) to your app, up to a maximum of 5, for each of the selected languages. This is not essential, but it is recommended as these keywords will be used by the search engine to find your app (if none are supplied then your description will be used).
The final thing to add to this section is the art assets that can be added in from the Upload Images section. The size and type of images will vary depending on the running resolution you have selected for your app, and if your app is designed for more than one resolution, you will have to supply screenshots for each of them.
NOTE: The page offers a handy option to make this operation easier from a link titled Upload All which permits you to select all the files at once (Control + Click in the browser window that pops up) and then clicking the Open button will upload them all and distribute them to the correct sections. This functionality depends on you having previously created the assets at the correct size and having them all stored in the same folder.
Once you have done this you can then click on the Save button and your app page should now have the two Required upload options checked like this:
Once you have finished with the required sections for uploading your app to the Store, you can then configure the optional details. Currently GameMaker:Studio does not support Map Services so that option can be ignored. However, you can set up ads for your Windows Phone app in GameMaker:Studio which means that you will need to configure the Add In App Advertising section. For further details on this please see the tutorial Microsoft Advertising pubCenter.
The final extra option available to you here is to set Market Selection And Custom Pricing. Basically this permits you to add and remove countries where your app will be sold as well as set the price of your app for those countries. If you have added in a base price (see above) then that will have been used to define the prices for all selected countries, but through this section you can change the price that Microsoft have assigned to individual countries.
Submit The App
Once all the details are correct you can now submit the app to the store. However before you go ahead and hit that Submit button, it is always a good idea to click the text beside it that says Show any errors and warnings. Clicking this will highlight any possible problems with your app, and they will be marked as important or optional. The important ones are problems that must be fixed for your submission to succeed while the optional ones are just reminders of things that you may wish to add or change before submitting.
When that has been done and you get no important warnings, you can then hit the Submit button which will send off your app application to the Store for checking and certification.
Your submission has been a success but you will now have to wait a time (anywhere from a few days to a full week) for your app to actually be certified and published to the store. You can see the current state of affairs for your app at any time by going to the Dashboard and clicking on the name of the app as shown below the Apps heading. This will take you to an overview page where you can see the current status and click on the different links to review the app information once it has finally been published.
You can find more detailed information, as well as help and troubleshooting, from the following pages: