Review by HolyKanoopy
"Way too quick, way too repetetive."
I grabbed a copy from the shelves eager as everybody else to play the game so many people have been talking about for months. I come home install on my laptop and start to play, only too be disappointed. Not only is the game incredibly quick, rushing you into Space in no time, but it is incredibly easy too!
You start out as a cell, you swim around in flow fashion eating whichever source of food you chose in the beginning. You can collect different parts of a limited variety, and then you can find a mate to create a new baby that will have the parts you choose. This is the funnest part of the entire game. When placing your defenses it actually matters where you put your spike, where you mouth is located, where you're swimming! Then you evolve onto the next stage, land, and the game goes down hill from there.
Creature phase, isn't as fun as cell, but still worth it. However, it is so much easier to play as a kill all carnivore, than to play as a friendly omnivore or a peaceful herbivore. The most fun I had at this point was collecting the wings to see how far I could fly. Not very fun trying to collect parts though when it is almost random which ones you get (based off of size of bones and what parts you already have).
Tribal Phase, is the worst one of all. Almost no reason to be nice and peaceful when the game rewards you the same either way. Was way too easy on either side (both aggressive and passive). You can easily wipe out a village in a few seconds, or conquer them with music within minutes. Such a waste of a phase, especially since you only have 5 enemies.
City phase is the easiest of them all, with the only resource being spice you can dominate the map within minutes. Even worse, is after you get a few towns there is a button that literally conquers all of the remaining free towns for you. Boring, but still better than tribal.
Space is nearly as bad as tribal. Such a boring a repetitive moment, you actually get rewarded for flying around aimlessly! With the demand for spice again, you'll spend most of your time flying around trading, then trying to set of a colony and stabilize a planets atmosphere. Sounds interesting, until you realize all it is is buying the right gear and dropping the right animals down without killing them. So repetitive, such a headache.
Then there is the worst concept of all, you have to design every single building type that you will use. Every colony gets its own specially designed house/factory/entertainment facility. No pre-made ones, all you, every time. Sometimes the vehicles will be pre-designed, but usually you'll have to design them for both religious, merchant, and military means. Also, you get to design the 3 types of boats and planes! Very tedious, but I guess in a game all about choice it fits in well. Then again, after you spent an hour designing the perfect city hall for your peace loving gargoyles, do you really want to spend that much time designing them again?
The audio is great, except sometimes they play a noise when they shouldn't. There isn't much noise or music, so you couldn't really mess it up. The ambient life sounds when you are in your creature phase are probably the best part about the audio. Cities and vehicles make the expected noises they should, so their isn't anything to complain about here.
They have the expected hiccups with creature designs, having jaw bones in the back of heads, having wings that fold up funny, or masks that just don't fit a face. It isn't terribly done, and each planet as a some-what original, some-what repetitive look too it, but some planets that show up as death stars making you think your poor ship is going to be destroyed until you realize there is just a delay.
Replay value 8/10
This was supposed to be the crowning feature in this game. Create different species, raise them different, but the game is just too quick and short for that. You can play an entire species through to space exploration within 4hours. There is a yearning to play again, but why do so when it is virtually the same no matter what trait you chose.
I would probably borrow this game from a friend, than buy it yourself. It's fun, but you won't play it for as long as you think. The creature creator released ahead of this was much more fun. So with that, I bid you ado, and head out in search of more galactic creatures that would make a kindergartner giggle.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 09/08/08
Game Release: Spore (EU, 09/05/08)
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