Microsoft and Team Dakota have officially released Project Spark for PC and Xbox One at retail and via digital distribution. You can pick up the starter pack right now for only $39.99, which contains a month's worth of premium membership bonuses and several useful tools and completed projects to help give gamers a running start in the tool suite.
So for those of you who don't know, Project Spark is a game creation toolset that also allows you to play, share and modify your creations and the creations made by other people. It's a little like Maxis' Klick 'n Play taken to the next level.
The idea was to create something fun and intuitive for beginners and veterans alike, offering the community a bit of a stepping stone in how to form logic paths, establish creative problem solving and build something entertaining and unique.
The general gist of Project Spark is explained below in the four minute launch trailer below, as seen on the official Xbox website.
One of the biggest drawbacks that I've witnessed from the community response of Project Spark is that it's too overwhelming and that the advanced tools make it a bit difficult for those without a utilitarian approach to the design schemes will find it difficult to make anything.
As mentioned in the video, the Starter Pack is designed to help newbies get a hang over the basic building concepts. It dispels the intimidation factor by offering up a step-by-step guide on how to get started and how to make the kind of game you want to play.
Additionally, Team Dakota has people on standby to help creators with any of their problems. You can take to social media or visit the official website to chat it up with other gamers or creators to get an idea about how you want to bring to life the game you've been dreaming about.
Given that the beta has been going on for the better part of this year, there are plenty of creations already available in Project Spark, so finding inspiration or something unique or fun to play is pretty easy. Some people have already made some crazy creations, ranging from a Super Mario Bros. redo to a Dragon Ball Z fighting game. There have even been some racing titles made, pinball and even a riff on Conker's Bad Fur Day.
I think the multiplayer mode is easily one of the most interesting and this is the perfect software application to rival Sony's LittleBigPlanet series. I still think that the PlayStation exclusive is far more accessible for newbies, but Project Spark is a huge step in the right direction for Microsoft. You can pick up a copy of the toolset right now via the digital distribution shop or from your local retailer.