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Microsoft Dates Build-a-game PROJECT SPARK for October

This morning, Microsoft announced the release date for Project Spark, along with a price for the gameplay sandbox title for the Xbox One.

The disc-based Project Spark Starter Pack will be available for the console on October 7 for $39.99, containing a sci-fi themed content packs as well as “Champions Quest: Void Storm,” which is the first episode of a planned ongoing adventure series. According to the release, the same content will be available digitally (a la carte, presumably) day and date on the Xbox One and Windows 8.1.

Project Spark has been in beta on the Xbox One and the PC since December: the publisher is promising that any content created between now and the release date will carry over into the full retail game.

The game, under development by Team Dakota, is like LittleBigPlanet on steroids: while it offers a mix of 3D platforming and action adventure, the true value of Project Spark is in its creation modes which allow users to build their own games and levels, using a mixture of preset elements as well as some interesting Kinect-enabled features like facial/motion capture.

Now whether that kind of robust feature set will be daunting for the general audience remains to be seen, but it’s out there. And if people gravitate toward Project Spark, it could follow LittleBigPlanet as one of those wildly inventive and exciting games that I’m way more excited reading about than actually messing around with myself (you know, on account of the laziness).

You can still download the Project Spark beta for the PC now.

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