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Critic Reviews 81% add missing review
Tech with Kids (Computing with Kids) ( )
This is an evolution simulation game from revered game developer Will Wright, father of The Sims games. You start in a Petri dish where you design your species and then nurture it through five stages of development until it has evolved enough to explore outer space. It's fascinating to experiment with as you design new species, and unlike any other game.Dec 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Power Unlimited (95 out of 100)
Een keer in de zoveel tijd komt er een spel langs dat alle lagen, klassen en seksen van de bevolking aanspreekt. Spore is (in potentie) zo’n titel en dat maakt het spel een mijlpaal in de gamegeschiedenis. Maar het allerbelangrijkste: het is gewoon belachelijk leuk om te spelen.Oct 3rd, 2008 · Windows · read review
Good Game (9.5 out of 10)
Spore is what you make of it. Everyone’s experience is going to be a bit different I think Jung...my first run though was around an 8.5, but my second civilisation was great fun and closer to a 10....you need really need to spend time with spore it to appreciate it, 9.5/10 from me.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GamingHeaven / DriverHeaven (93 out of 100)
Spore is a magnificent technical accomplishment and it will appeal to a huge audience. Parents will feel comfortable leaving their young children playing it and equally so, more mature gamers will love the charm and addictive nature the game has in abundance. An interesting side effect of the game is that many kids will actually start to learn the nature of evolution while not being subjected to boring tuition. The game also pushes user generated content to new levels which I don't think I have seen before, the creation and content sharing is seamless and intuitive. Obviously if you are a fan of adult based first person shooters then this might not appeal to you, however for the rest of us there is certainly something enjoyable to be gained from this modern day classic.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Impulse Gamer (9.3 out of 10)
Spore is definitely an exciting game in this time of repetitive ideas in an over crowded gaming market. It's not quite an RTS nor an RPG nor a strategy game but one that successfully combines all three genres into an exciting game that works quite well and is complimented with good graphics and a great premise. Brilliant!Sep 2008 · Windows · read review
Peliplaneetta.net (93 out of 100)
Tietenkin on myös selvää, ettei pelin kohderyhmä ole vain hardcore-pelaajat, vaan myös juuri se poppoo, joka innostuu SimCityn ja The Simsin kaltaisista tuotteista, ja niinpä kyseessä saattaa olla hyvinkin harkittu ja järkevä suunnittelupäätös. Jos edellä olevan asian lukeekin puutteeksi, se ei muuta sitä tosiasiaa, että kyseessä on todella laadukas tuote.Sep 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
IGN Australia (9.2 out of 10)
Enjoy the subtleties of each individual creature, lovingly made by someone across the world, with its gargantuan testicles and a name like “milfmeister”. Explore each planet and reflect on just what a random-number-generator is capable of in the right hands. Spore will take you on a grand journey. It will make you acknowledge just how far we’ve come, and just how far we have to go, and Spore will change the way you think about the universe we live in.Sep 3rd, 2008 · Windows · read review
Game Freaks 365 (9.2 out of 10)
The end result is a fantastically unique and innovative video game chronicling the process of evolution that anyone would enjoy and everyone should experience. What Will Wright was able to do with this game is remarkable. He pieced together elements from a number of different genres and made a comprehensive game from it. Critics will say that the elements are far too basic to fully enjoy. I say that this only makes Spore that much more appealing since you will focus more on strategy and action, less on micromanagement, while at the same time being accessible to non-gamers. It is hard to say how long the appeal for Spore will last. With its ability to create and share creatures, the possibilities are limitless. I can, however, definitively say that Spore is a highly addictive game that fully captures and realizes the creation and evolution of life on this planet, as well as on ones that we do not call home.Sep 2008 · Windows · read review
Jeuxvideo.com (18 out of 20)
En dépit de la succession de phases de jeu assez inégales qu'il propose, il faut bien comprendre une chose : l'intérêt de Spore n'est pas égal à la somme de ses parties mais réside dans l'expérience globale qu'il est susceptible d'offrir à tout un chacun, joueur confirmé ou non. Peu importe que la gestion y soit simpliste, la stratégie limitée et le challenge peu présent : le plaisir est à son apogée lorsque, parvenu au terme du jeu, on mesure l'évolution accomplie par son espèce depuis son stade cellulaire. Une expérience unique, à vivre au moins une fois dans sa carrière de joueur.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameZone (9 out of 10)
This is one of the most unique and innovative games I have gotten to play. NO other game allows this much customization, and it is this customization that is the key aspect that really congeals it all together. It is a shame that the game seems to falter with lack of depth in each stage. With the raging success that this game has already garnered in the first few weeks of its release, it is only a matter of time before these oversights are corrected in the eventual next version release.Oct 3rd, 2008 · Windows · read review
TTGamer (9 out of 10)
At first it is a seriously cool element to the game, but once you realize these tremendously implemented design aspects aren't that integral to the gameplay, and that the gameplay itself is really not very advanced by strategy game standards, the following reality sets in - Spore is a great game to play and perhaps one of the most creative ever made, but it isn't a redefining experience that ushers in a new age of gaming or anything like that - it is basically a multi-layered strategy game with the best "create-a" mode ever made. With that said though, it does come close to being a redefining experience, at least close enough to be one of the few scorching bright lights for the PC platform in 2008 and, as asserted, an absolute must have, even if it's just to say you've played it.Sep 25th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Hooked Gamers (9 out of 10)
Spore successfully redefines what it is to be a civilization game, not because it's the best one of the category, but because it successfully bridges the gap into other genres and brings them into one, cartoony, fun addictive game that is a hybrid of everything.Sep 13th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Eurogamer.net (UK) (9 out of 10)
We're all familiar with the innovative, web-aware customisation cloud that underpins Spore, but nobody's done it better (even though many now do it - apparently years after Maxis thought of doing it here) and the final game is proof that it was all worth it: you're all one big Designer, and Spore succeeds as much because of you and me as the many worlds scattered across the stars and the many ways we've been given to explore them.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameSpy ( )
Spore is completely unique: a game where the very act of playing it helps create the world for other players. We've put in over 50 hours so far, and could easily double that just by tinkering with the editors alone. It may not be a perfect game, but truly innovative titles seldom are. Spore is a technological triumph that introduces a whole new way of tapping into a bottomless well of content. The game's future is waiting to be written, and the answer to Drake's equation is whatever you decide to build.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
IGN UK (9 out of 10)
Spore, then, is an infinite toy box. It’s not really what anyone thought Spore would be, and again there’s that nagging sense that it needs an expansion pack or two to plug a few holes (specifically, to expand what you can do on those planets once you’ve finished tinkering with them), but God, the scale of the thing. Once you tire of space high-jinks you’ll immediately go create a new species, drag them all the way up to the top and one day, as you’re roaming another distant galaxy, you’ll stumble across a quiet little planet. You’ll fly over to see who’s there and as the communication screen flickers into life you realise with a start it’s your last species, on the planet you created for them, living in the houses you designed, nervously circling your spaceship in the starcraft you engineered. Evolution might be just a mini-game, but Spore’s eventual universe is very much a mega-game.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
UOL Jogos ( )
Se não fosse pela ausência de um modo multijogador, que seria muitíssimo bem-vindo, pequenos problemas como a mecânica um pouco rala das primeiras etapas do jogo e errinhos aqui e acolá de tradução, "Spore" seria perfeito. Ainda assim, ele oferece uma experiência única e altamente imersiva, capaz de prender por dezenas de horas qualquer pessoa, independentemente da preferência por determinado gênero ou mesmo aqueles que nunca tiveram contato com os games. É um jogo que inova em vários aspectos, seja com suas mecânicas inteligentes e divertidas, sua poderosa ferramenta de criação ou pela troca constante de conteúdo online. Tudo isso, aliado a um trabalho visual e sonoro excelente, faz de "Spore" um dos títulos mais criativos da década, indispensável para qualquer amante dos games.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Games TM (9 out of 10)
So, while the claim that some elements of Spore are more 'digital toy' than videogame might hold water, it's also an irrelevance, as titles such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band have shown. This is one of the most ambitious, fun, and stimulating pieces of software of the last decade and, frankly, what does it matter whether it's 100 per cent pure videogame or not?Oct 2nd, 2008 · Windows
Play.tm (88 out of 100)
Spore is well worth your hard-earned cash, especially if you are a fan of more casually informed games. You can come home from a day of school or work and just relax whilst creating anything you want; the flexibility really is a huge draw and I don't think I have ever come across a game that lets you wield your imagination in such a convincing way.Sep 11th, 2008 · Windows · read review
IGN (8.8 out of 10)
Yet, while Spore is an amazing product, it's just not quite an amazing game. I can't help but feel that Spore is ambitious and memorable, but I also admit that, save for the cool Space Stage, there's not a lot of depth here. Rookie gamers are going to feel at home here, but veteran gamers may feel like they need more. Still, Spore proves to be one of the most unique products in recent memory, one that reaches for the stars and ends up giving us a universe in a box.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Game Informer Magazine (8.75 out of 10)
The mechanics of the individual phases can make the moment-to-moment interaction with the game feel shallow, but the experience as a whole is thought-provoking and - most importantly - genuinely entertaining.Nov 2008 · Windows
Deaf Gamers (8.7 out of 10)
In some respects Spore is an impressive game and it's certainly one of the most original PC titles you're going to see this year. In some respects however, the game falls short of greatness because a fair portion of the game is unspectacular and dare I say, tedious. The overall experience does manage to cover up the game's disappointing elements and I can honestly say you've never played a game quite like Spore. The customisation elements are superb and the way that the game content can integrate other players' creations with your own is truly superb. Whether or not Spore will have the mass appeal and replay value of Will Wright's earlier games remains to be seen but it's definitely a game that everyone should experience.Oct 1st, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameLemon (8.7 out of 10)
A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away there was a man called Will Wright, and he made a game called the Sims, and then its sequel, and then all the horrendous technicolour yawn of expansion packs that you'll see packing the 'desperate last chance bargain bin' in your local games store. Fortunately for us he had a dream, and that dream was to stop rehashing the Sims, preferably sometime before our eyes bled black and our civilization disappeared under piles of brightly-toned DVD cases. He also dreamed of making a game that would simulate everything in the universe ever, in beautiful, shiny detail. After numerous false starts and quite a long wait Spore is, kinda, maybe, that game.Dec 10th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Gamer.co.il (87 out of 100)
אין לדעת אילו הפתעות צפויות לכם ובאילו יצורים מוזרים תתקלו במהלך מסעותיכם. כמות התוכן עוצרת נשימה, אך למרבה הצער אף פרט במשחק אינו מספיק עמוק על מנת לגרום לנו לחזור אליו שוב. כותרים מהפכניים מסוג זה לעיתים מסתכנים בכך שמרכיבי המשחק השונים יהיו פחות מלוטשים, אך עדיין ניתן להעריך את השאפתנות. האם המסע המרתק בתוך נבכי היצירה האנושית יצליח להשכיח מכם את הבעיות? זו שאלה עליה תאלצו לענות בעצמכם...Sep 12th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameSpot (Belgium/Netherlands) (87 out of 100)
Ieder voor zich zijn de verschillende onderdelen van Spore niet zo bijzonder. Als onderdelen van een ambitieus en visionair project werken ze een stuk beter. Voeg daar de beste aanpassingsgereedschappen die je ooit gezien hebt aan toe, en je hebt een geweldig strategiespel dat voor uren en uren hoogwaardig vermaak zorgt - en voor een chronisch gebrek aan slaap.Sep 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Good Game (8.5 out of 10)
I don’t think I had as much fun as you Bajo– I didn’t really enjoy the making creatures and building houses. Maybe it’s because I’m not a sims fan and there’s lots of sims influence in the early stages, so my initial impressions weren’t great. It does get more complex later on and I can 100% see how this will appeal to a broad selection of gamers, just not me. I’m giving it a 8.5/10Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
PC Player (Denmark) (8.5 out of 10)
Det er svært ikke at have forventet meget af Spore, og det er altså ikke alle vådeste drømme der bliver opfyldt. Til gengæld er resultatet sjovt, nemt tilgængeligt og helstøbt.Oct 2008 · Windows
Tweakers.net (8.5 out of 10)
Het gaat bij Spore niet om de delen maar om de som daarvan, en die som is absoluut meer waard dan de losse delen. Het gemak waarmee je een eencellig wezen laat evolueren naar een ruimtevarend volk is indrukwekkend en hoewel de delen misschien niet allemaal even uitdagend zijn, zul je onderweg genoeg indrukwekkende momenten meemaken. Het constant aan je eigen creatie schaven in de diverse editors is daarbij cruciaal. Dat maakt dat je niet met zomaar een wezen, volk of ruimteschip op pad bent, maar met iets waar je een band mee hebt, en dat is misschien wel de grootste prestatie van het spel. Daarmee is het Will Wright gelukt om een spel te maken dat je ergens om laat geven, en dat is geen eenvoudige opgave.Sep 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
gameZine (UK) (8.5 out of 10)
Perhaps the best way to sum it up is that Spore is what you make of it – put a lot of effort in and you get your rewards in seeing your creations evolve, grow and explore the universe. Merely skim over the creationist elements and you’ll find a relatively staid RTS core that won’t be winning any awards. Only by putting the effort into the creationist aspect does the RTS element gain any meaning.Sep 12th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Game Informer Magazine (8.5 out of 10)
Whether I was conquering a world or spending far too much time in the editor making the most grotesque creature imaginable, Spore captured my imagination and kept me thoroughly engrossed every step of the way.Nov 2008 · Windows
games xtreme (8.5 out of 10)
Spore is a gorgeous game with a cartoon life like no other; it has a fantastic set of editors that allow you to make some supremely inspired creations. The sound effects are superb and the music has an ethereal and out of this world nature to it. Yet it's let down by several design oversights, the very nature of the player driven content should provide your universe with some truly awesome creatures, yet for them to stand any kind of chance they have to support numerous stock parts that make a lot of them appear generic. The stage transitions are pretty jarring. It is more an universal sandbox than a game, and if you look at Spore as one big executive toy you’re on the right track. As a game it’s a collection of mini games bound into one package, as a simulation of life, it’s getting there…as a toy, it’s right up there with having your own LEGO set and making vignettes about life on Mars. If you can accept the game like this, you should be able to find hours of amusement and enjoyment.Oct 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
2404.org PC Gaming (8.4 out of 10)
As much as we have accomplished, we’re still quite literally a speck of dust in this galaxy of ours, and our galaxy is a spec in the grand universe. The ideas that Spore provides makes you think, and that might be what Will Wright was trying to achieve all along. If that's the case, then he’s succeeded and quite possibly surpassed expectations in that regard.Sep 15th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Vgames (83 out of 100)
ספור הוא כותר שאפתני וייחודי, בעל אפשרויות התאמה אישית ויצירה שלא נראו קודם, אך חוסר בגיוון ושילוב של משחק אסטרטגיה בשקל הורסים את החוויה. בתחילתו הוא מהנה בזכות העיצוב והרעיונות המהפכניים, אבל מהר מאוד הוא הופך למשעמם, חוזר על עצמו ומופשט מדי מכדי להנות ממנו באמת. יחד עם זאת, ספור הוא אחד הפרוייקטים הכי שאפתניים, גדולים ומלאי תוכן שאי פעם נתקלתי בהם. אם יש לכם ילדים קטנים (או אתם עדיין שומרים על הגחלת בלבכם), הם ואתם תרגישו כמו בבית ותהנו ממנו מאוד. בקשר לגיימרים רציניים – הם יזדקקו ליותר.Sep 7th, 2008 · Windows · read review
As I mentioned earlier, strictly as a game, Spore's a flawed effort in five different genres, smushed together in a casual-player-friendly manner. But as a tangible representation of intelligent design, with an emphasis on creation and sharing, it falls perfectly in line with the rest of Will Wright's work. It's not a perfect game, but it's definitely one that any serious gamer should try.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Fragland.net (82 out of 100)
Spore has to be bought for the accessible but powerful Creators, the SporePedia and everything surrounding that. The game itself, and the accompanying gameplay, seem more to be an extensive framework for this innovation; letting you create the beings and have other gamers show theirs. Nothing wrong with that, but a Sims, Civilization or deep playing experience is something else. It's Fun and relaxing though!Oct 17th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Krawall Gaming Network (81 out of 100)
Evolution light! Wer „Die Sims“ liebt, wird an dieser Galaxis voller Kreaturen seine Freude haben, denn hier darf man Gott spielen. Hardcore-Spieler werden aber vom oberflächlichen Genre-Mix aus Strategie und Simulation schnell gelangweilt sein.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
ActionTrip (8.1 out of 10)
What we really did enjoy is the humor, which is present practically around every corner, ranging from the hilariously animated weird-looking entities making silly gestures, to delightful mating dances. In other words, we do recommend the game. Start playing and see where your imagination can take you. This game inspires players to come up with a range of truly amazing creations. It triggers creativity perhaps more than any other title on the market and that deserves respect. In addition, Spore already has a thriving community and great online potential, which is something both Maxis and Electronic Arts are fully aware of. Therefore, we urge you play the game online in order to check out the ever-expanding Sporepedia and other cool content. Also, you'll be able to experience entire worlds and land on planets created by other players.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Thunderbolt Games (8 out of 10)
Spore is the perfect example of a very interesting idea that takes a step back every time it advances forward. The chronic lack of depth in the middle stages is an injustice to a brilliant start and finish which should have been the crowning moments but instead serve only to hold the game up above water. It would be easy to dissect Spore as a series of mini-games worthy of individual release on Xbox Live, but you’re taken on a journey that only you can tamper with, and that’s where Spore’s credit lies. The customisation element is a feature that the developers are considering selling as a platform for making future videogames, and with the ease seen here it’s no wonder why. More time spent fleshing out what should have been the real meat of this title would have seen its praises sung from every rooftop, but alas, it’s as if the developers simply ran out of DNA points. Nature is a fickle bitch.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Giant Bomb ( )
I feel like Spore hasn't really gotten a fair shake. Its coming was built up by its pedigree, by the media and its own publisher, and by years of delays into the sort of mammoth event that no piece of pop entertainment could live up to or should have to endure. All of the game's pieces may not be perfect, but combine them with Spore's originality and unique bent, with all the things it gets right, and you may find there's a pretty darn good, thought-provoking game in here, after all.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Gamereactor (Sweden) (8 out of 10)
Det finns en inneboende charm i [Spore], en hög ambitionsnivå, och att se sina skapelser sprida sig genom galaxen ger en viss känsla av stolthet. I jämförelse med andra spel skapar du helt din egen historia, din egen berättelse om din ras framfart, öden och äventyr. Det må finnas rymdspel som är mer komplicerade och har ett mycket större djup men ofta saknar de den personliga prägel som är Spores centrala beståndsdel.Sep 3rd, 2008 · Windows · read review
4Players.de (80 out of 100)
Am Ende hat man das Gefühl, dass Spore zu sehr für den Kompromiss und die sammelwütige Masse entwickelt wurde. Es hat ein sympathisches, wunderbar massentaugliches, aber letztlich in seinen Teilen ganz gewöhnliches Gamedesign. Und damit hat es sich aus evolutionärer Sicht hervorragend an die aktuelle Spiele-Umwelt angepasst. Hätte Will Wright markanter selektiert und ausgelesen, hätte Spore vielleicht die Spitze der Spieleschöpfung erreichen können. Ist das tragisch? Nein. Hier hat sich ein kreatives Team an einer im Ansatz grandiosen Idee versucht, mich neugierig zappeln lassen und an der kunterbunten Oberfläche sehr lange Zeit gut unterhalten.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Absolute Games (AG.ru) (80 out of 100)
«Симулятор эволюции от самого Уилла Райта» — безупречный слоган. Получасовой ролик с демонстрацией Spore на Е3 2006 года произвел неизгладимое впечатление даже на тех, кому ничего не говорило имя отца-основателя The Sims и SimCity. Пристальное наблюдение за проектом многим аукнулось неприятными сюрпризами в долгожданной коробке с игрой. Счастливые неофиты радостно лепят уморительных существ и скачут по зеленым лугам, а знатоки разводят руками и мрачно упоминают «рожки да ножки». МикробSep 17th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Games Finder (8 out of 10)
The mixture of genres in each of the game stages means the gameplay has great variety. It’s also a very unique experience as you take your small cell species throughout their evolution and eventually take them into space.Feb 20th, 2014 · Windows · read review
Gameplay (Benelux) (80 out of 100)
De ultieme virtuele bouwdoos, maar een spel dat pas in de laatste fase naar iets leuks evolueert.Sep 26th, 2008 · Windows
Gamereactor (Denmark) (8 out of 10)
Spore er kort sagt et meget ambitiøst spil, og spørgsmålet har hele tiden været, om Will Wright ville lykkedes. Svaret må være "I det store hele er projektet lykkedes", da spillet immervæk ikke kan siges at være perfekt. [...] Ikke desto mindre bør Spore prøves af alle, der har været fascineret af Will Wrights tidligere spil. Der er en faderskabsfølelse over at skabe et væsen på skærmen, og det er ikke uden stolthed, når ens væsen tager det første af mange skridt ind i rumalderen.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameSpot (8 out of 10)
Spore keeps a timeline of events, pinpointing every decision you've made and assigning you into broad categories based on your overall behavior (social, adaptable, and so on), so there's plenty of reason to try a different approach. Not that these varied approaches make for drastically different gameplay, but they do give you a reason to revisit the amusing moments that make Spore unique. Taken on their own, its pieces are nothing special. As parts of a singular ambitious vision, they work far better. Throw in the best customization tools seen in years and an enthusiastic community brimming with creativity, and you have a legitimately great game that will deliver hours of quality entertainment.Sep 4th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Avid Gamer (8 out of 10)
Spore’s success all depends on what you expected. If you’re wanting a revolution then you’ve got it in the form of sharing content. If you’re expecting a life-lasting game then you’ll be bitterly disappointed.Sep 19th, 2008 · Windows · read review
411mania.com (8 out of 10)
For me, Spore feels like wasted potential. There are so many opportunities to make the game more in-depth and challenging, but it was somewhat squandered. Spore tries too hard to be like every game imaginable and the jack-of-all-trades mentality doesn’t work. The customization engine really shows off Spore’s potential as well as Maxis’ talent, but everything else feels a tad rushed. If you played the game for a couple of hours, you will experience everything the game has to offer. If it took another year to make everything better, I wouldn’t have minded the wait to be perfectly honest.Sep 18th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameStar (Germany) (79 out of 100)
Last month Electronic Arts published the creature editor as Spore Creature Creator. Now that the full game is available it is clear that the buyers of the editor have seen the best part of Spore already. If you were hoping to test your creations in a simulated world, and improve them, you're in for a letdown. Spore is no sandbox, instead, it is a quite linear, not very flexible, and often tiring list of tasks like "run, collect, fight". The worlds are especially disappointing: there's not much more to see than some plants and creatures. Only the space phase unleashes at least partially the huge potential behind the idea of Spore and makes it nothing less than impressive. It's more than just a game, it's a creation driven by the vision to use evolution as a toy. The editors are full of innovations and, all in all, Spore is sophisticated and rich in details. But all this is rarely noticeable because of its uninspired game play - which is such a pity.Sep 1st, 2008 · Windows · read review
V2.fi (79 out of 100)
Samoin minun on vaikea nähdä Sporessa Sims-tyylistä jatkuvuutta (tai mahdollisuutta käteviin rahastus-lisäpaketteihin). Rakentelusta pitäville rakentelua ei ole kuitenkaan aivan tarpeeksi, eikä se ole jatkuvaa, vaan rajoittuu aina tiettyyn määrään asioita per aikakausi. Strategistille ei ole tarjolla tarpeeksi strategiaa, toimintapelaajalle ei tarpeeksi toimintaa. Oman pelimakuni tuntien en todellakaan ensimmäisenä ole huutamassa PC-peliin lisää syvyyttä, mutta Sporen tapauksessa on pakko niin tehdä. Tekemistä on kerrassaan aivan liian vähän. Ajoittain pelin parissa kyllä todella viihtyy, mutta kokonaisuudesta jää omituisen sillisalaatin jälkimaku. Pudottamalla puolet osioista pois ja keskittymällä hahmon kehittelyyn kaikenlaisen oheiskrääsän rakentelun sijasta olisi lopputulos ollut huomattavasti nykyistä ehjempi.Sep 11th, 2008 · Windows · read review
YouGamers (77 out of 100)
Strange game. Technologically impressive and initially very fun, but feels overly dumbed down for the casual audience and suffers from poor gameplay balance. Manages to entertain for a while, but lacks substance and depth to keep you interested in the long term. Had the opportunity to be so much more.Sep 11th, 2008 · Windows · read review
The A.V. Club (B)
Once you settle into the flow of the game, the creative possibilities expand just as the actual gameplay becomes limiting. The user-generated content could have added meaningful complexity—what if you could trade user-generated goods, instead of the game's generic "spice"?† But instead, it never gets past a "gee whiz" factor. Surveying an entire galaxy, full of content from the entire world, makes you glimpse the possibilities of the universe. But having evolved from survival to self-actualization, you'll have nothing left to do but admire it.Sep 16th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Jeux Vidéo Magazine (15 out of 20)
Si Spore risque de décevoir certains joueurs par la faiblesse de ses mécanismes de jeu, il tient quand même ses promesses en matière de personnalisation, et constitue une expérience inédite.Nov 2008 · Windows · read review
PC Action (Germany) (74 out of 100)
Eines frage ich mich ernsthaft: Da erscheint ein klasse Editor, das Spore Labor, mit dem die Leute da draußen die kreativsten und skurrilsten, schrillsten und buntesten Viecher der Computergeschichte entwerfen können, und was passiert? Sie bauen Penisse. Große Penisse, kleine Penisse, haarige Penisse und tanzende Penisse. Hallo? Bin ich hier im falschen Film? Ich baue Titten! Große Titten! Man sollte den Spielern anscheinend nicht zu viele Freiheiten lassen. Doch genau das tut Spore. Freiheit ist zwar gut, wenn es aber so weit geht, dass ich mich beim Spielen fragen muss, warum ich das alles auf mich nehme, läuft etwas schief. Schade, Spore verschenkt viel Potenzial.Sep 2008 · Windows
PC Games (Germany) (73 out of 100)
Je länger man Spore spielt, desto belangloser wird die mit Liebe erstellte Kreatur, desto mehr verliert das Spiel an Charme. Die Weltall-Phase ist gar nicht so übel, der - trotz allem oberflächliche - Mix unterschiedlichster Aufgaben könnte Gelegenheitsspielern gefallen. Doch das rettet Spore nicht vor der Eintönigkeit: Warum muss ich stets das Gleiche machen, warum kann ich die vielen Vorgänge nicht automatisieren? Ich bin fast 20 Stunden durchs All gedüst, einen Schluss, etwa in Form eines Abspannes, habe ich nicht gefunden. Für mich hat Spore daher nur ein Ende: die Deinstallation.Sep 24th, 2008 · Windows
Gamesmania.de (72 out of 100)
Es sollte etwas ganz Großes werden, herausgekommen ist ein fraglos witziges Spiel, von dem noch lange gesprochen werden wird, doch viele Zocker dennoch schwer enttäuschen wird. Natürlich macht das Führen eurer Kreaturen durch die gesamte Evolution Spaß, doch viel zu schnell merkt ihr, dass immer dieselben Aufgaben auf euch warten und es an Abwechslung mangelt. Taktische Überlegungen wie in einem typischen Echtzeitstrategiespiel sind kaum einmal zu treffen, erst in der Weltraumphase wird Spore etwas offener und damit auch besser. Doch die umständliche Steuerung macht auch in dieser Phase vieles kaputt. Am Ende bleibt Spore ein innovatives Stück Software, das vor allem durch seinen schlichtweg genialen Editor viel Freude macht, als Spiel aber nicht richtig zünden mag.Sep 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
JeuxVideoPC.com (14 out of 20)
Clairement réalisé pour plaire à un maximum de clients, Spore en oublie d’être un vrai jeu et ne propose qu’un embryon de gameplay qu’un enfant de 5 ans maîtrisera en moins de trois minutes. Heureusement, l’éditeur dévoile tout le potentiel du titre, d’ailleurs entièrement construit « autour » de cet outil fantastique. Spore n’est pas une déception mais se révèle pas comme la tuerie escomptée. On attend les premiers symptômes du syndrome Sims, c’est à dire l’apparition des premières extensions. Celles-ci viendront sans doute étoffer un contenu bien maigre et donneront envie de recommencer dès le début… La nouvelle machine à fric made in Maxis est en marche.Sep 5th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Factornews (7 out of 10)
Objectivement, je ne peux pas mettre plus de 7 à Spore. La majeure partie des phases sont bien trop simples et la phase la plus intéressante comporte des défauts majeurs. L'excellent éditeur remonte un peu le niveau mais ne fait pas tout. Pourtant je me suis beaucoup amusé en jouant à ce jeu. L'ambition était surement demesuré mais le résultat est frais, original et bourré d'humour et de références à la SF. Le jeu ayant du succès, on peut espérer que des addons sortent pour par exemple étoffer à fond la phase espace, transformant ainsi un coup d'essai en un grand jeu.Sep 22nd, 2008 · Windows · read review
FileFactory Games / Gameworld Network (70 out of 100)
These two things, as well as the lack of purpose with creations, puts Spore farther back than we expected based on the tens of previews and videos we’ve seen on the game. It’s a shame; even one of these three factors would have made Spore infinitely more exciting, but in the end it’s just another trip to the playground. Fun for a time, but not exciting or inspiring.Sep 25th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Gamer.nl (7 out of 10)
Spore is uniek in zijn soort en biedt de gamer genoeg variatie in speelmogelijkheden en het maken van eigen content, maar door de gamer zoveel mogelijk aan te bieden, heeft Spore zichzelf in de vinger gesneden. Bepaalde spelelementen lijken maar half af te zijn of voegen weinig tot niets toe aan de gameplay. Als ontwerpsoftware verdient Spore een dikke tien, als videogame toch iets minder.Sep 8th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Video Games Daily (7 out of 10)
Spore was meant to be everything to everyone; casual, hardcore, old, young, fat, thin, ugly, uglier. But it isn't. It's a bit of everything - a tiny helping. As a result it's unsatisfying and a letdown. But it retains charm through the editor software. And the fact that you can make penises, which are funny.Oct 20th, 2008 · Windows · read review
Edge (7 out of 10)
In its defence, Will Wright says that he’d rather see the Metacritic scores and sales of The Sims 2 than Half-Life 2. Well, at least he’s honest. But even looking beyond the planet-sized ‘if’ that hangs over its sales potential, Spore is a stark reminder that while greatness in this market doesn’t always equal success, true greatness is almost seen as anathema to it. Something as transcendent and overwhelming as the game we hoped for – the infinite, mind-boggling space odyssey suggested early on – doesn’t sell expansion packs. It doesn’t fit on to iPhone. It doesn’t fill the vacuum left by The Sims. It doesn’t have a place in that universe.Sep 26th, 2008 · Windows · read review
neXGam (7 out of 10)
Nach dem immens hohen Erwartungen und dem Hype musste es ja fast zur kollektiven Prügelattacke gegen Spore und Electronic Arts kommen. Man kennt das ja. Allerdings hat sich EA tatsächlich einen Satz heiße Ohren verdient, denn neben dem Spiel selbst sorgen vorallem der Kopierschutz und das Installationslimit für ein ungutes Gefühl in der Magengegend. Zudem ist Spore unterm Strich weitaus weniger revolutionär als vorher angekündigt und lässt mangels wirklicher Evolution (á la Sim Earth) nach ca. 10 - 20 Stunden stark in der Dauermotivation nach - ergo sind die geforderten 50 Flocken für Spore schlichtweg deutlich überbezahlt!2008 · Windows · read review
Game Revolution (B-)
Spore is the most fantastic game you’ll ever avoid playing. I can easily guarantee that you will find something upsetting about the end product. The game is riddled with flaws small and large, and though there is a lot of impressive tech backing the whole product, it does not have the kind of polish we so arrogantly expect from our entertainment. But please do not dismiss Spore just because it doesn’t look as good as Shooting You In The Goddamn Face 17. You will be selling yourself, Maxis, and games as a whole, short.Sep 16th, 2008 · Windows · read review
GameBoomers (6 out of 10)
I’m not really disappointed in what the game offers as much as disappointed in what was promised in marketing and then completely failed to deliver. The graphics of the game are stylish and well done and it does have a high degree of entertainment value in its early stages, as well as offering replay for those who have the wish to explore different creature development paths. The vehicle and building construction interfaces, while flawed, are fun to use -- like breaking into your first big box of crayons. If you are in the mood for a lighthearted and colorful game with a kind of “genre du jour” feel and a few minor life lessons (but little depth), then this is it.Jan 2009 · Windows · read review
Mana Pool (6 out of 10)
For all Spore originally promised, personally I feel the game didn’t deliver. I originally gave up in the civilization stage and had to really push myself through that to see what the Space Stage is all about and to me it was a bit of a let down. The controls/UI are just not very good, the gameplay is incredibly clunky and managing your empire is just no fun if you can’t build more (and better) space ships. Essentially you are playing a few episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and there are games which do that much better as well. That said, Spore is original – and the only limit in the earlier stages is your imagination & creativity. If you can pick it up cheaply, it’s worth doing, but I still feel that Spore is one of the let downs of recent years. A pity as the game had absolutely massive potential. So now we just wait for someone who combines Spore’s Cell and Creature stages with Civilization and as final stage some new form of Master of Orion 2. I’d pay good money for that.Oct 5th, 2010 · Windows · read review
Computer Bild Spiele (3.46 out of 6)
Der geplante große Wurf ist Sims-Erfinder Will Wright mit Spore also nicht gelungen. Die Abteilung für Kreaturendesign ist äußerst unterhaltsam, während die späteren Spielphasen nur Gelegenheitsspielern genügend spielerische Tiefe vorgaukeln. Zudem muss pro Spielphase eine andere Art der Steuerung erlernt werden. Zwar macht Spore eine zeitlang Spaß, wegen diverser Schwächen ist es aber nur "befriedigend".Oct 1st, 2008 · Windows
Yiya (5 out of 15)
Spore hat viel zu bieten. Immerhin durchläuft der Spieler in zahlreichen Stunden die gesamte Evolutionsgeschichte. Innerhalb von fünf Phasen wird versucht, dies möglichst authentisch umzusetzen. Doch was bleibt am Ende übrig? Das Spiel beginnt vielversprechend und mag vor allem durch seine Ausmaße zu beeindrucken. Der Kreatureneditor ist ein absolutes Muss. Später entwickelbare Gebäude und Fahrzeuge sind wunderbar frei zu konstruieren. Das macht Spaß. Doch sieht man genauer hin, bleibt abseits von eben jenem Editor vieles auf der Strecke. Die Entwickler haben sich zu viel vorgenommen. Das ganze Konstrukt mit den zahlreichen Phasen wurde nicht konsequent, abwechslungsreich und fordernd genug umgesetzt. Es wurde so sehr darauf geachtet, dass der Spieler auch ja die Möglichkeit hat, sich selbst zu verwirklichen, dass die eigentlichen Spielelemente ziemlich schwach ausgefallen sind.Feb 1st, 2009 · Windows · read review
Quite a let down, but still good
by D Michael (231)
First and foremost, this review will contain some spoilers. If you want to play through the game having absolutely no idea what you're in for and like surprises, then beware of this review.
The long awaited, "Spore" is here. Does it measure up to the hype? Well, yes and no.
First of all, I had difficulty getting the game to run. It flat out refused to cooperate with an 8800 GT SLI arrangement. As a matter of fact, when the game would fail to start it would ask me to update my video drivers (already done) and then to DISABLE SLI. Yep, disabling SLI got the game to work. Why a new release has this problem is beyond me.
So anyway, I begin at the cell stage and I have to say that this looks really promising. Out of all of them, the cell stage is the most realistic, and the environment is perfect. Early on you notice the world zooming out more and more as you grow and evolve. I really enjoyed this part. However, it was over way too quick. You can even get an accomplishment merit for finishing it in under 8 minutes. I'm not saying I did that, but just the same knowing that it's possible to complete an entire stage in under 8 minutes is a little disappointing.
Moving on to the creature stage, I did not like it much. At first it's kind of fun, but this stage is a grind and unfortunately way too long. This could have to do with the path I chose, which is to befriend other creatures and to be a herbivore. This requires you to charm other animals which takes quit a bit of grinding in order to build up the sufficient DNA to spend on the required parts. On top of that, because you're putting resources towards non-combat related characteristics, you're a sitting duck for anything bigger than you. Perhaps playing this stage as aggressive would be more fun, but here's the catch (we'll get more into this later); you receive attributes and various penalties depending upon how you acted in a previous stage of the game. Therefore, if I wanted to play aggressive in the creature stage, I'll be equipped with more offensive capabilities and less economic/social abilities which is NOT the path I desire.
And therein lies another problem with the game. While it's quite possible to change how you treat others and survive, it's very difficult, because one stage builds on how you acted in the last. Act militant in one stage and you're terribly ill-equipped to be a diplomat in the next. Moving on...
In the tribal phase, I have to say that this was like an RTS mini-game. I say "mini-game" meaning dumbed down, simplistic, and with lack of variety. Nevertheless, at this point you control various tribesman (all are identical except for the chief which has some special abilities) and the goal is to either live in peace with everyone, kill everyone, or live in peace with the remainder of tribes left after you've killed a few.
There is pretty much zero in the way of tactics here. Befriend tribes which are close (which involves giving gifts and putting on performances), and kill those that are raiding you or non-cooperative. Given that there is no variety in units, the bigger numbers almost always win. As you progress and get tools you tend to get an edge. A spear wielding tribe will do better in combat against a torch wielding one. But numbers are king and there is a very humble population cap (12 units at the height of your tribe). Furthermore, there are specific places to build buildings which further eliminates strategy and the only resource you have to manage is food, which is so widely available that nobody can cut you off from it. All in all, the tribal phase is a rather forgettable one.
Progressing to the civilization phase had me really ticked off. Because of my previous actions and by trying to trade or be otherwise altruistic, my civilization was a religious one. No, I did not choose that, I was automatically assigned that by the game. Because of this, I could not establish trade routes and my military force was extremely weak. Now I'm surrounded by competing empires that hate me because I'm a religious nation on top of that (the game tells you which factors are responsible for friendship or conflict between competitors). What's worse, modifying my creature has completely stopped, and you come to find out, are you ready for this, that none of the physical traits or tribal outfits you have assigned to your creature make one damn bit of difference in gameplay. How could they do this?
The good is that you get to design your own buildings and vehicles, but unfortunately it's mostly just for looks. In the civilization stage you must conquer, convert, or buy competing cities. Once you take over a city of a different discipline (for example, a religious city converting an economic one), you will then have the option of employing the tactics of that city. Again, this stage is like an RTS minigame. What I did find laughable is that combat units are created instantly. In other words you can just stockpile your cash with no military present, and then if someone happens to raid you, you can just spam click the vehicle button and instantly reach your population cap out of nowhere. Bad, bad design for an RTS. You RTS players can only imagine if you applied that ability to ANY RTS out there.
Overall it's too simplistic in so many ways. I conquered the globe, first time playing, in one sitting that was probably well under the 3 hour mark. So again, another forgettable stage.
Moving on to the galactic stage, I have to say that the game really shines here. This could almost be a standalone game, except for the fact that there are too many repetitive missions. Many of the promotions are based upon repetition, and almost all of the missions used to establish good relations with other species are fetch and bug hunt missions.
But the terraforming and planet manipulation parts are rock solid and there is nothing else out there like it. It's especially cool to populate a planet with your friend's own creations to see how they interact in your worlds. I could go on and on about this final stage, there is so much to do, so much to explore, and all kinds of content that you leave the computer after 5 or 6 hours of play feeling like you just didn't get enough done. Good stuff.
I'm sad to say however that there is a bug in the game that is unfortunately, a show stopper. There is an event when your home world gets raided and you must defend it. After vanquishing the enemy, when you try to leave your planet the game crashes. I've been pouring over forums and there are literally thousands of users experiencing this problem, spanning the globe. If you avoid going to your planet to stop the invasion, your homeworld will be destroyed. If you go, then you'll not be able to continue due to the crash after the fight. It's a show stopper, and since there is no fix (yet), my fun with Spore has ended there.
See above, it's all mixed in.
The Bottom Line
All in all Spore is a good game. It's not as fun to play as I expected it would be, but nevertheless it is a heavy hitter and worth the money. I hope that Will Wright or the gaming community in general however, will learn from the mistakes that Spore has, and eventually make the game that we were hoping to get these past two years in waiting.
Sep 10th, 2008 · Windows
The Power of 5
by Kit Simmons (264)
When asked about his inspirations for Spore by German game review magazine GameStar, Will Wright listed the short film "Power of 10", an impressive zoom out of a picnic scene to a distance of ten million light years and back to a magnification of 0.00001 ångström. Current evolution theories and their alleged imprint on the game concept aside, the scale concept behind "Power of 10" perhaps describes Spore's core game idea best.
Stretching over five game phases, players of Spore influence an entire species' development from single cell organism to a galactic civilization. Not only does Spore roughly chronicle the mechanisms which modern science assumes cause the evolution of life, it also plays like a light-hearted ramble through the history and evolution of computer games.
Starting in single cell phase, Spore reduces the game to the simplest of conflicts: eat or be eaten. An arcade experience à la Pac-Man, another core game element that is introduced in this early stage is the customization of the organism using the game's amazingly flexible and easy to use 3D anatomy editor. Customization grants the organism advantages like enhanced speed, strength or manoeuvrability but must be paid for by spending DNA points which in turn are amassed by ingesting the life form's chosen diet. As soon as the life form grows to a certain size and has to leave its original habitat, the primordial soup, the palette of available body parts with which the organism can be outfitted is enhanced. While the newly-born land organisms goal of survival remains the same, means to this end become a little more complex as social interaction and more sophisticated defence and hunting mechanisms become available. Although players still control an individual organism, the game's Creature Phase plays like an action-RPG. The game's third phase, Tribal, finally sacrifices control over an individual organism, turning into a real-time strategy game. Spore now makes players mobilise an entire community to gather resources and defeat or assimilate competing life forms' tribes. As Spore enters Civilization phase and treats players to a severely simplified version of the eponymous series of strategy games, the conflict becomes cultural rather than interracial - having conquered their habitat, creatures now fight among themselves for living space and resources. Space Stage, the game's final phase, opens up the whole galaxy to players and broadens their view of all preceding phases. From a life form's humble beginnings as a cell to their physical development during Creature Stage, social achievements during Tribal Stage and cultural evolution during Civilization Stage, Space Stage allows the life form to finally realise the larger scope of the universe it lives in and use its knowledge to shape the destiny of creatures less advanced. It is also during Space Stage that Spore as a game makes the possibilities of its in-built online community fully available, automatically loading other players' creations into the game.
The heart and soul of Spore is its editor, granting players an unprecedented level of customisation in a game. The technical achievement is truly remarkable because design elements and animation work together as flexibly as in no other game before it. Spore still manages to maintain its own style of presentation, a strangely perfect balance of customisability and character.
Spore is a casual game in all respects as neither its complexity nor its purported "scientific-ness" are as deep as its creators like to believe. Although basic scientific theories and mechanisms are illustrated, those aspects remain, while not shallow, crude: DNA, the basic building blocks of life, gets reduced to a currency and a life form's failure doesn't set its evolution back or jeopardise its survival in a way illustrating natural selection. The game glosses over the more complex aspects of evolution like heredity, mutation and the concept of survival of the fittest as the environment doesn't seriously endanger the players' achievements. Failure is just a minor setback and doesn't cause players to rethink their creature concepts.
Like with most Will Wright games a certain educational value can't be denied, yet beyond the fascination of laying hands on processes which in real life take billions of years to develop, Spore doesn't offer anything enlightening to those who know their basic biology. Although the game's all-text, built-in Sporepedia goes to great lengths to explain game mechanics it fails to establish a factual relationship to real-life scientific discoveries, something that made the Civilization games and their Civilopedias worthy additions to their immersive strategic experience.
While fun is to be had during all game phases, some offer more possibilities than others. Cell Stage plays like an amusing little gimmick, a Pac-Man clone which draws ironic parallels between the simplicity of early life and early computer games. Creature stage offers players a wealth of tools to customise their creatures and the look of their game, but it is here that Spore sacrifices too much potential for scientific education in favour of playability. Tribal Stage is perhaps the least creative stage as customising the creature tribe's look doesn't significantly change strategies. Space Stage, while seeming immense in scope and possibilities, suffers from repetition and slight balance issues. It is literally a single player against a strangely unresponsive universe as Spore, true to its casual game philosophy, shies from competitive online-play. The most other players can do is offer copies of their own creations to populate other people's custom universes, forfeiting their control over them to the CPU.
The Bottom Line
Less of a scientific toy, Spore is an experience in sheer scope. Crude as its game mechanics may be, all stages build upon each other and the game's strong creative component achieves a sense of individuality few other games have. Its simple and repetitive themes stand in stark contrast, yet for all its ambition Spore wants to be a game that can be casually played. Thanks to its accessibility it has more long-time replay value than more specific and complex games but pays for it with the strong appeal more complex themes and concepts often create.
Dec 30th, 2008 · Windows
I can proudly say: I did not make a penis in this game.
by Asinine (1003)
Allows for a lot of customization.
Universe is very expansive.
Final stage allows for a lot of completion.
Choosing between Herbivore, Omnivore and Carnivore really makes a difference.
Controls are problematic.
There is always a best option when creating your characters, so there is no reason to experiment or make your own thing.
Civilization stage drags on.
Space is the most enjoyable, but has too much “doing things”, besides just been repetitive.
The Bottom Line
As the game starts you’ll find yourself in the ocean, controlling a small creature. This is the first phase of the game and also by far the least complex of them all: Your goal is to consume a number of pellets, red ones for the carnivores and green ones for the herbivores. You can also kill other creatures by bumping into them with your mouth or whatever spiky parts your body contains, which has a chance of giving you a new part to stick to your body (such as a needle) and gives you three free red pellets. It sounds alright, but it’s slightly unfair towards the Herbivores who can’t bite enemies and thus they need to either scour the world for meteorites (which also have parts in them) or awkwardly kill enemies through other means. It’s also slightly beyond me how you can play as an Omnivore in this phase, because some mouths eat the green pellets and other the red ones. Maybe you stick two mouths to your character?
Once you have some parts you like and consumed some pellets, you can use a special button that calls a “mate”. If you swim over to your mate, then the two produce an egg and you can spend the DNA you collected by finding the pellets on adding the new parts to your body. Overall this reminds me of old Flash games where you had to consume smaller fish (or whatever the theme was) in order to grow and eat even bigger fish. This deviation might not be exactly that, but sticking parts to your body allows for a bit more tactic instead of just comparing sizes. The selection of possible parts is still very limited at this point, but we are supposed to be simple cells, so it’s fine.
After you absorbed enough pellets you’ll be prompted to leave the ocean by clicking on a button, upon doing so you’ll be taken to a new customization screen. You now have the ability to stick legs, arms, hands and other limps to your character. You can now also bend your body in different 3-dimensional shapes. While the amount of available parts is yet again underwhelming, this is the phase where that will change a lot, as you’ll find new parts scattered around the planet and by interacting with other creatures. If you decide to collect everything, then you’ll end up with a reasonably large library of parts that should allow you to realize most of your creative visions. If I have to name one problem though, then it would be that each part has a set of stats to it. On the easiest difficulty it’s not THAT big a problem, but it does mean that there is a definitive “better” option and that means settling with anything else will handicap you.
During this phase you have two different ways to play, though both feature around interacting with other races. Herbivores will have to make friends by sticking parts to themselves that upgrade their social skills (posing, dancing, singing and the likes). They then click on a creature and mimic their moves in order to fill up a bar. If the other creature fills his part of the bar faster than you do, then the attempt will have failed. You can increase the speed at which the bar fills by bringing more of your kind with you (you’ll unlock more slots for allies as you progress in this phase) or increasing the level of your actions by, you guessed it, sticking parts to your creature. Alternatively you can pick Carnivore and just rip the other creatures a new one. Carnivores are once again better off in this phase, as you are unlikely to die as long as you keep to basic gaming-instincts (don’t charge into the middle of the group, keep your gear up to date, max out your group). Either killing or befriending other creatures once again gives you DNA that allows you to add new parts to your race and fills the progress bar.
You can also get additional DNA by completing the mini-quests that pop up all the time, but these aren’t really that complex. Every time you find a new race, it will give you a number and tell you to befriend or kill so many of that race (Carnivores usually have to do more). There are also a few rare creatures that give you special quests, but these are hard to find and don’t really break up the tedium. It doesn’t really get into the way, since you have to do the tasks anyway, but it got really frustrating that I would run out of creatures to kill as a Carnivore. This meant having to wait for a while until they respawn, but in the time that takes I would be prompted to move to a new nest again. Moving nests is not too bad a quest either, it’s actually pretty clever: once you run out of nearby inhabitants to harass or befriend, then game will automatically locate a new nest nearby that has plenty to do around it.
Overall not a bad phase, though it would have benefited from more variation in the quest and less RPG-elements forced into it.
As your guys gain more and more DNA, their brain gradually grows and they become capable of logical thinking. Fire is invented, a house is built and they unite themselves into a tribe! This part of the game is really reminiscent to Age of Empire mixed with some elements from Halo Wars, you have a town center and from there you can raise individual peasants that can take on whatever job you assign to them. Doing so costs food, so you’ll have to use them in order fish, farm and hunt in order to keep the storage filled. There is however a very good twist to this scenario, because these peasants also fulfill a combat role (be it unarmed or with whatever weapon you give them). This means you’ll have to simultaneously keep up food production, guard your stock and keep your young safe from harm, as well as possibly wage war on enemies.
The aforementioned Halo Wars elements come into play when you want to construct buildings and get a selection between different kinds to place on pre-determined tiles attached to your base. From these buildings you can get items that help you in your tasks, such as a club to fight better or a horn to impose other tribes. You can give each individual villager an item of choice and this makes up for the lack of individual units. This phase signals the rise of the main problem I have with the later phases of the game: all of them are variations on other games, but with no depth at all. In this Age of Empires part there are no defenses you can build, no technologies to research, no trade, no diplomacy, no ships, no siege weapons and no ability to make buildings wherever you want. It’s a quality over quantity problem we are talking about.
During this phase the Carnivores once again have to slaughter their way to success, which is definitely the most straightforward option. This time around the Herbivore solution is easier though, you just take all your guys with you and play music for other tribes. If you picked Herbivore before, then you can fire fireworks into the sky that instantly raise your relationship with a tribe and you can also offer presents to instantly get a better relationship. By doing this you can end this phase in less than an hour and don’t have to deal with the poor combat mechanics. The problem is that there are set moments when you can start recruiting more villagers (similar to how you could get more room by building houses in AoE), so there is no way to outdo your enemies through size as this also instantly spawns larger enemy tribes. All you can do is waiting for a few enemies to walk away and then quickly burn their stuff down before they come back. Another derpy feature is the clothes you can stick to your characters, which looks almost always stupid. Clothes have statistics, but I managed to break the system: the hats have the highest stats, so just take three different hats and put them somewhere halfway decent (preferably where you can’t see the damn things).
Guess which series this phase is mimicking? Yeah, it’s the beloved Civ series! You’ll have to manage and defend cities, create units to do battle and claim resources in order to prevail… or you just go religious and mess everything up. Let’s start at the beginning:
At the start of this phase you’ll be asked to design a basic house for the first time and then a land-vehicle to go along with it. You can also build an entertainment-building, a factory and turrets, all of which you can personally design (aside from the turret, oddly enough). Likewise there are also three different vehicles; land, water and air. While it’s fun to design your own vehicles, I can’t help but notice that this is once again done in an attempt to hide the lack of units and technology. The vehicles aren’t very comfortable to design either because they have three stats: speed, health and religion/power, but all of these are stuck in a percentage bar, so you can have five rockets driving your car forward, but it will still be slow because there are guns on the side of it. Religious vehicles are even more dumb, because you need to stick ridiculous trinkets to them (such as giant harps), but in order to get enough religious power you’ll have to fill the whole thing up.
A positive change to the formula however is the fact that everything is done real-time, so no turns that just serve to slow things down. This part of the game can also get REALLY fast-paced as different factions (all of your own race, oddly enough. You’d think they at least let you conquer other races if you chose Herbivore in the previous phase) steal resources from one another and cities trade hands quite often. I also like the way you build your cities: Factories make people angry (making your city easier to take through religious methods), but also increase your income over time. To balance out for making people angrier you can place entertainment-buildings, which increase happiness. You can also place homes, which have no bonuses, but when connected to a factory they increase the income of that factory or, when attached to an entertainment-building, they increase happiness even more.
This phase can be played in three ways, so if you wanted an Omnivore, then this is finally the point at which you can develop your creatures into that position. Regardless of how you want to play it, the goal is always the same: conquer all the cities on the map. You can simply bomb the place with powerful vehicles (Carnivore), but also use religious vehicles to summon a holograph of your leader that tries to convert the population (Herbivore) or buy other cities (Omnivore). I am rather puzzled as to why you use holographs, seeing as we just evolved from a tribe and maybe priests would make more sense, but there is something else to complaint about. Buying cities DOES NOT work. I had enough money to buy 500 planes, but whenever I clicked on a city, it would say I didn’t have enough trade, even if I had every possible trade route leading to that city. I spend like two hours farming money in an attempt to buy that city, but then the game literally gave me the option to instantly win the phase. What the fuck?
This is the final stage of the game and obviously the main focus of the designers. You go into space and are allowed to travel to the millions of stars and galaxies out there, as well as interact with other galactic empires. I had so much fun in this phase that I wish they would have just made a damn Space-sim instead; the trading is amazingly fun, there are badges to collect by doing tasks, the missions aren’t too bad, there is so much to explore and it’s motherduckin’ space! I LOVE IT!
But I also grew bored of it too soon. This is perhaps the greatest disappointment I experienced with the game, but it was so rough that I had trouble enjoying it after I got over the initial kick. First of all: the missions are basic MMO-stuff, meaning collect that from there or kill X amounts of that. It’s always like that and this really shines through once you found some other empires and they start asking you a million things. There are also so many factions out here that it got really hard to keep track of anything after a while, it got so bad in fact, that I constantly forgot where my allies were located and what was safe to explore and what wasn’t.
Perhaps the biggest problem is that I couldn’t play as hostile as I did in any of the other phases. Your ship is stronger than any regular one, but you can’t really do anything offensive for a very long time and when you do you’ll be toasted by a million freaking planes at the same time. This forced my race to instantly change their whole way of interacting, but no matter how long I played, I never acquired the power to even assault ONE enemy planet. Another huge deal is the Terraforming, which is needed in order to make profitable colonies. I´m fine with placing a generator on the planet to keep atmosphere levels good, but then the game demands that you plunk down trees and animals to sustain it as well. It sounds okay, but for some reason the score keeps decreasing after I do this. How does placing trees make the planet colder? Or how does placing animals drain the planet’s atmosphere? It’s stuff like this that makes this phase a lot less enjoyable.
Spore has a lot of good ideas, but having so many phases only serves to make each one of them incredibly underwhelming and unpolished. It was certainly a nice experiment, but history has already proven that collections of small games rarely work well, unless they are intended to be mini-games.
Sep 27th, 2012 · Windows
Contributors to this Entry
Critic reviews added by Tim Janssen, vedder, beetle120, Wizo, Gonchi, Picard, Kabushi, Alsy, Jeanne, chirinea, Cantillon, Big John WV, Solid Flamingo, Utritum, Sciere, Cavalary, Bjorn Holine, jaXen, Alaka, Patrick Bregger, Klaster_1, Samuel Smith, Kit Simmons, CalaisianMindthief, Xoleras, yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy), Riemann80, SGruber.