Review by mmmfloorpie

"A shell of a game"

Maxis has been one of my favourite software developers ever since I first started playing SimCity. I have always been extremely loyal, and over the years I have just about purchased every single game they have made (even 2 copies of some games!). When I first read about Spore I thought it sounded like an AMAZING concept and a game that would easily satisfy my craving for an indepth strategy game.

I am a product of 'Sim' games afterall, I can spend hours in any of the Sim City games, I spend weeks building nations in the Civilization series, and my Sims characters lead way more interesting lives than my own... Therefore, I mistakenly thought that Spore was going to roll up all of those and deliver it into one package where there is continuity through all stages with my little species that I create.

Needless to say, on release day, I ran out and bought Spore without flinching as I trust Maxis to deliver a quality product. Even when Maxis games have been less than stellar (Sim Isle, Sim Copter) I have found them to provide countless hours of entertainment. When I first started playing Spore I had the same high hopes, and gleefully played the game for hours... It came as a huge surprise when I had advanced through all 5 stages in a single day. This was NOT what I purchased! There is NO fine tuning your creatures in this game, or in depth game play as I love with Sim games... You fly through all the stages and complete the entire game in a single day. It totally doesn't matter at all what your creature looks like, as long as it has the right snout for singing and the right legs for dancing. This phase is undoubtedly the longest phase of the game (besides the galaxy phase which is 'infinite'), and once you are done 'impressing' enough other species (they all hang around a crater that they call a 'nest') you move right on to the next stupid phase.

This game is nothing more than a shell, like a demo pack of Sim games that doesn't let you really explore the potential of the game. I am upset that I was robbed of $50 bucks and doubley upset that this game was released by "Maxis" and Wil Wright. It also angers me that they try to make up for the shortcomings of the gameplay by saying that it allows you to be 'creative' and share your designs to other players around the world... Frankly, who cares? As I said, it doesn't matter what any of these creatures look like as it has no impact on the game, so why would I want to spend my time sifting through an online catalogue looking at someone else's creations? Equally puzzling, who would want to look at my creations? Why would I want to go back to the Civ stage and design new army units or new buildings, as again, IT HAS NO IMPACT ON THE GAME. Maybe some people are out there that would want to spend time designing grand buildings to complete their cities, but again who cares? This was the least appealing part of the game to me. I would basically make my apartment buildings look like a white block, and then my theatre would look like a white blob and my factory would look like a white blob. Again, it simply doesn't matter what any of this stuff looks like and isn't at all fun. Imagine playing any one of the Sim City games and having to design every single one of your buildings before they would appear in the city. That would be rediculous, there is no fun factor in that, just a time waster; it's something you expect the game progammers to have spent hours on perfecting. I just want to play the game, and control things like the economy of my cities, the production of my cities and any million other aspects that SHOULD have been incorporated into this game.

Any game that I buy has to have a plability factor of atleast 2 weeks or else I consider it a failure as obviously it wasn't interesting enough for me to want to play it that long. With Spore, I played it through the first day and never touched it again. Literally, the only time the disc was in my tray was the release day and I honestly have not had ANY desire to play it again nor do I think I ever will. Games like Sim City, The Sims and Civilization are truly great games as every few months I get an overwhelming desire to play them again and I'm totally hooked on them for weeks. I can't belabour this point any further, Spore is a shell of a game that doesn't leave you craving for more. If anything, it makes you crave for that $50 bucks you spent on it to go buy 5, ten year old games, that go 10x as 'deep' as this game does.


Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 10/13/08

Game Release: Spore (US, 09/07/08)


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