Finally, after more than a year of waiting, Spore has been released for both Mac, PC and iPhone. Samuel has already told us his impressions after trying out Spore, but as for the Mac version, I can say that the game is quite recommendable . Created by the same developers as the Sims, in the game you try to create your own species and survive through evolution , dividing the game into several levels or stages, very different from each other.
In the cell stage, you begin as a single-celled being that has to feed on plants or animals (you choose its diet), and grow to excel in the ecosystem. It is the stadium you can play with in Spore Origins for the iPhone and definitely the one that has most impressed me graphically . As you grow, everything around you changes perspective in an amazing way, and the effect of the various ‘layers’ of plants and animals is very accomplished.
A Spore creature in its cell stage
Once you have reached the maximum score, you advance to a higher stage where you can give your animal a pair of legs. It is at this point that the game shows another of its strengths: The panel for editing your animal, in which in a very comfortable way we can give our creature legs, poisonous appendages or spikes . Once the animal can walk, it forms a nest and takes care of eating and relating (either socially or aggressively) with the other species, while finding pieces to evolve in the skeletons of other dead animals.
Once you have become the king of the jungle, you move on to a new stadium where you gain intelligence and ability to use tools and build constructions. You form a tribe that has to move forward until it forms entire cities, at which point you compete with the rest of the nations of your world until you can create a world government .
A nest of Spore creatures in their animal stage
And from here, you launch a UFO into space and you get ready to relate (either trading or making war) with the, without exaggeration, hundreds of empires spread over thousands of star systems in your galaxy . The spatial phase of the Spore is undoubtedly the image of the phrase ” You never finish this game “.
And it is at this stage that the game begins, despite everything, to be a little heavy. As you begin to spread out across the stars, you’ll be faced with constant attacks and alerts of biological disasters in your colonies , which you’ll have to deal with if you don’t want to lose commercial material or even entire ecosystems. That’s why it’s hard to level up and you end up getting tired. Besides, the end of the game looks very far away, since in theory you must overcome an empire that controls the whole centre of the galaxy, which is said to be soon, and get to know what the core of the galaxy hides. Anyway, according to what I read the game can go on even if you end up controlling all the planets in the galaxy (something I already warn you: It’s impossible).
The progress screen of the evolution of your species in Spore
But don’t be fooled: The game is a new concept that mixes several styles into one, as we evolve. Highly recommended for playing alone or online, and quite dangerous, since provides endless hours of gameplay . Especially in the space stage, where if you dare to try to conquer the whole galaxy you can be trying for months.
In terms of graphics, my 2.16 GHz iMac Core 2 Duo, 256 MB of video and 2 GB of RAM works perfectly, although in some videos of the game introduction there are some slowdowns . However, when we’re playing in the middle of a game, I haven’t noticed any problems at all.
A network of allied star empires in the galactic state in Spore
Perhaps one drawback of the game is that since it is very different in each stadium, the keyboard and mouse controls change profoundly , and when you have gotten used to some you find that suddenly you have to learn others. Anyway, they’ve made them very intuitive and it doesn’t take much to control your creature as it evolves.
In short, Spore is an innovative game, which hasn’t impressed me as much as it promised and it gets quite heavy on the space stage (especially when you realise that if you want to finish the game, you can get old trying) but it has left a good taste in my mouth . When you take a look at the screen of the evolution of your species, you can see how much work you have done, as you have literally gone from being an animal based on a few cells to running powerful galactic empires across countless star systems. Good work by EA and Maxis.