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Microsoft Cancels Project Spark: Why Is The VIdeo Game Creation Tool Shutting Down?

14 May 2016, 11:07 am EDT By Aaron Mamiit Tech Times
Microsoft is planning to shut down Project Spark, beginning with pulling out the video game creation tool from the Xbox One and Windows digital stores. Why is Microsoft making this move?  ( Project Spark )

Microsoft has announced that it is planning to cancel Project Spark. The game is no longer available for download on both the Xbox One and PC, and online services will soon be shut down.

The Project Spark video game creation tool was made completely free by Microsoft in October 2015. With the shift from a free-to-play model to a free and open creation platform, Project Spark opened up access to all the downloadable content that gamers previously had to pay for.

During that time, there were over 200,000 game creators in the Project Spark community, with as many as 400 games being uploaded daily.

Starting Aug. 12, Microsoft will cut Project Spark's online services. Users can still play the game after the said date, but they will not be able to access any content that is stored in the cloud. As such, gamers will not be able to download and play what other gamers have uploaded, and they will also not be able to upload their own projects.

Gamers who wish to access user-generated content after Aug. 12, whether their own or those made by others, will need to download it before support for Project Spark's online services is pulled out.

"This was an extremely difficult decision for our team that we do not take lightly," wrote Project Spark community manager Thomas Gratz in a post on the game's official forums.

Gratz explained that with the transition away from active development last October and into a free title, many of Project Spark's team members moved to work under different projects by Microsoft Studios. While this meant that nobody on the team was laid off, it also meant that it was no longer possible for the team to continue all the work necessary to support Project Spark, including bug fixes and updates.

Gratz, however, calls on the community to celebrate what the video game creation tool has accomplished, as hundreds of thousands of creations were given life with Project Spark.

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