Review: Spore

Review: Spore

I can safely say that this is a shallow, terrible, unappealing, and boring game. I bought Spore, and Spore Creatures launch day because I was a huge fan of Will Wright and his amazing sim games. Spore was a huge disappointment especially with all the extra content taken out before launch day. Now, mind you, I’m not saying that this is the worst game ever, I’m just saying that for what it was worth, Spore was not want I expected. I was younger when Spore released, obviously, and I loved the game when it released but now that I’m older I understand good games, I gotta say that this is horrible. It has it’s flaws but there is one huge fatal flaw that may absolutely destroy a purchase of the game.

Back in the planning stages of the game,  Spore was meant to have a realistic art style but now it has a cartoony look, you know, for the kids.

Spore Game
F*** the kids, Otacon.

The game actually works well with the cartoony art style. At least, I like it. Throughout the many stages in Spore, you will see how much detail and beautiful scenery can be made with this kind of art style. Sure, sometimes the graphics can get pixelated and there can be a few pop ins but that’s the price you pay for… um… a decent looking game? The art style doesn’t really go good when you’re out on a rampage and guts and chunks are thrown everywhere but at least it looks humorous. The colors, the mostly smooth textures, and the overall humorous style of the game go great with the cartoony look.

There’s no story. Kind of. All you have is an intro cutscene, cutscenes that explain how you became more advanced , and the motivation to find the center of the universe. Nothing special and certainly not anything worth mentioning besides the hilarious ending.

The “levels” of the game are the different stages of life you’re going to experience. The first is Cell Stage. You play as a single cell organism that is trying to become the alpha cell of the tide pool. This stage is the easiest and the most simple. Just eat and kill others when you need to while collecting parts and achievements.

The next stage is creature stage, now here is where the game starts to show how beautiful and how much depth  it has. You collect parts to make your creature stronger, you can collect wings, horns, different mouths, and a few other things that will you make dominate other creatures on the planet. The creature creator really makes this stage have replay value. Too bad everything else sucks. The controls feel stiff no matter what parts your creature has. The fighting system is either too shallow or very cheap and befriending creatures is so easy that it’s as simple as knowing what parts do what. The planet you’re on is huge but that doesn’t mean that it’s interesting. Exploring is only fun when you’re trying to find parts but once you found everything, you pretty much have no other choice than befriend or kill enough creatures so you can advance to the next stage.

Now you have Tribal stage, easily the hardest stage in the game if you’re not constantly on alert and gathering whatever resources you can find. It’s basically a real time strategy game, a really toned down real time strategy game. This stage is so simple but at the same time, it’s so difficult but that’s what makes it fun. It has it’s moments but there’s also a fatal flaw that can make you start the entire game over and it’s going to be all your fault. You see, there are other tribes trying to go for dominance and you can either be kind or aggressive. The other tribes can sometimes raid you and destroy your tribe. Sometimes, the entire planet of tribes can go after you and comepletely wipe you out. If you save in the middle of a fight between tribes and you have no chance of winning then you’re screwed because unless you can quickly think of a way to beat three tribes at once, you have no other choice but to restart on a new planet.

Oh joy, a copy of the Civilization games. This stage is called Civilization. How odd. This stage is just a more fleshed out Tribal stage. Now you can control armies and you can have diplomatic control. Your goal is total world domination. You either have to buy or conquer other nations that are in your way of dominance. This is stage is fun but you can beat it in about 10-30 minutes. It’s not quite as frustrating as Tribal but it’s still pretty easy to get yourself into a tight muck up.

The longest stage in the game, Space Stage. Your goal is to reach the center of the universe while making your space ship  strong enough to escape past the strongest creatures in the galaxy, the Grox. You don’t control your creature, you control a spaceship. You can can upgrade your ship to have more fuel, create planets, have stronger weapons, etc. This stage can easily be the most boring if all you want to do is reach the center of the galaxy and if you don’t like multitasking. I won’t go into much detail but you’re gonna need to be good at multitasking while you start wars, have diplomatic powers, and make the perfect planet, all while exploring the entire galaxy.

What makes this game amazing is the creativity and the creativity of others. You can create anything you want, whether a grotesque creature, an amazing car, or Barack Obama as your space ship. You can upload your creations to the Sporepedia, the game’s “online encyclopedia” where you can find other creations from around the world. If you don’t have online then you will not have the best experience possible. The flaw is that if you buy the game then there is a chance that you will not be able to access the Sporepedia. Ever. The game comes with a code that allows you to have access to online capabilities and the code can only be linked to one e-mail account. It’s quite obvious that there people that have pirated the game because if you bought the game then there is a chance that someone else already got the code for it.  There’s no other way to play online because of that code and online capabilities is what makes this game worth playing (besides creating creatures and buildings, I guess).

Spore is shallow and is only fun in small doses. Although, you can create tons of things in this, the novelty of creating creatures and buildings wears off after a while. That one fatal flaw ruined the game for me and others that legally bought it. Screw Spore, I’m gonna go play some Civilization.

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