Microsoft announces Avatar Marketplace, unlockable apparel

During Microsoft E3 2009 Blogger / Enthusiast Luncheon -- you know, this one -- Xbox Live General Manager Marc Whitten announced the Avatar Marketplace for the Xbox 360. The Avatar Marketplace, unsurprisingly, will allow 360 owners to download new apparel for their Avatars. Players will be able to browse game specific storefronts. Yes, storefronts, so don't expect all the apparel to be free.

In addition, Whitten also announced Avatar Awardables. Awardables, as their name implies, are articles of clothing that can be awarded by Xbox 360 games for completing certain tasks. "I think you're going to see a ton of new content that comes from that," said Whitten. The apparel won't be limited to things like shirts and shoes either, as the ODST Avatar above illustrates, it's conceivable we could see little Alan Wakes and Raidens running all over Xbox Live soon.

Whitten didn't announce any release date for Awardables or the Avatar Marketplace, but given the ODST apparel, we'd say Fall 2009 is a good bet.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.