Microsoft's Project Spark servers will shut down today

Project Spark, Microsoft's attempt to release tools for Xbox One and Windows 8/8.1 for users to create games, will shut down its servers after today. Users will need to download any content created with Project Spark now if they want to continue using it offline.

Microsoft previously announced its decision to sunset Project Spark in March, several months after it made all content created with the tools free to download. However, people who still have the tools installed on their Xbox One or PC can still play any content made for it offline. Microsoft outlined its plans back in March:

For existing users of "Project Spark," online services will be unavailable after 8/12/16. Without services, players will no longer be able to download user-generated content or upload their own creations. If you want to access user-generated content offline, you will need to download this content prior to 8/12/16. Be sure to download your favorite community creations and your own uploads if they are not saved locally.

Project Spark was first announced at E3 in 2013, and started its open beta in March 2014. It officially launched in October 2014, but it never reached the audience that Microsoft hoped it would. A planned Xbox 360 version was cancelled.

John Callaham