Friday, June 02 2006 @ 12:00 AM CDT
Spore is a computer game designed by Will Wright that simulates the complete history and future of life. We could start with some quirky little line about the theory of evolution, but we wonít. Instead we will simply let you know this is one of the most anticipated titles of the year and the ultimate life form simulation of all time if it can deliver what the demos have shown us it can it a beta state.
Life according to Spore comes in six very distinct phases. All phases are accomplished by advancing your species by completing certain forms of evolution. You know when you reach these levels after your creature lays an egg. With every egg you can upgrade your species on almost every aspect in your goal to build the ultimate race.
The games creature editor is one of the shining points of this title. All the magic happens after laying an egg and having the ability to play god in the ultimate way. You start with a blob with a spine. The first order of business is to sculpt out the body type you would like your creature to posses. After choosing this you can equip them with arms, legs, mouths, noses, hands, feet, eyes, horns, tails and more to advance your race. Want a species with six legs and twelve feet? No problem.
Based on all the objects you apply to your creature in this weird mix of Operation and Mr. Potato Head your new species will come to life. You can simply drag and drop various items any where on the body and watch as you develop into a lean mean surviving machine. After all the overall goal is to survive the test of time and the various limbs and body parts you apply all have statistics of their own that will help determine how successful your creature can become.
Spore is much more then a creature editor though. While hours of time will be wasted making the perfect species, much of your time will be spent watching it evolve. The game will determine your wacky excuse for lifeís posture and movement based on how you equip your creature.
It all begins in the tide pool though. Fight with other creatures and consume them to adjust the form and abilities of your creature. Itís survival of the fittest at the most microscopic level. This will be the foundation that is set for your species and the beginning of its battle for survival. Your basic goal at the early stages will be to hunt for food and begin to sculpt the type of race you are trying to develop.
Soon after you will gain the ability to venture onto land and help your creature learn and evolve with forays away from your nest. The only way to grow is by taking chances! In the demo we saw Will Wright is hunting with his small creature and eventually a much larger creature looks at him as a good snack. After evading the predator he resumes his own hunting.
Now while running around to feed you is fun, the goal of your creatureís life is to reproduce. In the demo we see Will Wright let out a mating cry and listen back for a potential booty call. Shortly after he finds a suitable young mate and lets out another mating call. The mate seems to approve and next thing we know the creator of the Sims series is watching his two creatures bump uglies with Ron Jeremy music in the background.
Now that the magic is over itís time to care for your tribe you just created. Instead of controlling an individual creature, you are now caring for an entire tribe. Give them tools and guide their interactions as you upgrade their state of existence. Will Wright showed us an example where he dropped a rack of spears into his village. After emitting out some fierce screams they gathered around the rack to inspect what their god had gave them. After a short period of investigating they picked up the spears and realized they were weapons. Within minutes Wright had placed fire and drums and his small tribe was dancing around the flames. It was really quite amazing to watch.
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