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June 17, 2008 10:50 AM   Subscribe


 
I don't quite get what they're doing here. This is the free demo for another Spore demo you have to pay for? Or are they going to sell Spore piecemeal so you buy Spore for $50, find you can't do crap with just Spore, and have to buy all the rest of the game?
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 11:03 AM on June 17, 2008


This is a free demo for a part of the main game. If you like what you see, you can shell out ten bucks for the full character creator. You don't have to--it'll come bundled with the full game in September. If you buy the CC now, you get a five dollar discount off the main game when it comes out.

I'm enjoying it so far. Very versatile, and intuitive enough that even my artistically-challenged ass can come up with a bunch of neat-looking, fun designs.
posted by EarBucket at 11:05 AM on June 17, 2008


They're offering the creature creator on the premise that Spore will be a complete game with an apparent end goal, but also have an online single-multi-player element: when you become a spacefaring race, or apparently even before then, you will interact with the creatures or even planets created by other players. These objects have a small description language such that they can be seamlessly uploaded and shared online.

So apparently, in advance of the full game release, you can get a free demo of the creature creator to make creatures, the most popular of which in the "Sporepedia" will be in the final game and added to over time (automatically?). The pay version of the creature creator apparently just has more "parts" to work with in building your creature.
posted by hincandenza at 11:10 AM on June 17, 2008


It's called viral buzz and is the reason alGore invented the tubes. (That said, it's on my list to download and try.)
posted by DU at 11:11 AM on June 17, 2008


Creature Creator is a lot of fun; there was a bit of a penis-monster throwdown in the office today.


But:

I'd really like to know why the full version of Creature Creator for Mac isn't available for purchase/download in the UK. Of course, it could just be hidden in the bowels of EA's slightly rubbish online shop - if so, anyone know where?

If it really is PC-only in the UK, am I likely to have any trouble if I grab the US version instead? Will I still get some form of discount on the full game?
posted by influx at 11:11 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'll wait for the full release and create my creatures the old fashioned way: straight up evolution from the unicellular level, thank you very much.
posted by Spacelegoman at 11:13 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


The trial version (as opposed to the paid version of the Creature Creator) has a limited number of parts available to play with. The video demo shows a bunch more options. Most of those are unavailable in the freebie version.

So basically, they give a taste for free, to get you hooked, and then start reeling you in. Age-old marketing scheme.
posted by Dave Faris at 11:17 AM on June 17, 2008


I couldn't get this to run on my work PC and my Macbook loads up a full-screen galaxy video, I can move the mouse over it, but the creature goodness is not forthcoming. :-(
posted by Brainy at 11:18 AM on June 17, 2008


Also of interest to those code/steganography geeks is how Spore embeds all the content of your creation into the alpha channel of a .png file.
posted by Brainy at 11:27 AM on June 17, 2008


Rock Paper Shotgun had a highly amusing thread about this.
posted by empath at 11:28 AM on June 17, 2008


I'll wait for the full release and create my creatures the old fashioned way: straight up evolution from the unicellular level . . .

Buy the controversy! Now only $9.99 for the full version.
posted by The Bellman at 11:29 AM on June 17, 2008


I was playing with this all morning - it's highly addictive, especially for someone with a xenophilic bent like myself. I was a bit disappointed that extra arms all seem to act in unison, but I haven't explored all of the animation options yet. Hint - extra heads look better (i.e. not so jammed in) if you use limbs as fake "necks".
posted by wanderingmind at 11:41 AM on June 17, 2008


Rock Paper Shotgun had a highly amusing thread about this.

Bwahaha! So much for Spore being a family game.
posted by fusinski at 11:42 AM on June 17, 2008


Ryvar predicted the developers would do this.
posted by chudmonkey at 12:02 PM on June 17, 2008


Hmm. No love for the OX S 10.4 users
posted by Hands of Manos at 12:19 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I played this a couple of days ago. It's quite fun. However, I think I'll need a new graphic card before getting the game as it had a noticeable lag when I applied textures to a creature.
posted by Memo at 12:32 PM on June 17, 2008


My four year old absolutely loves the demo. Her stuffed animals had to see the animals she created and their "babies." (There's a function that creates up to three hatchlings.)

I'm been so impressed with how she's reacted to it -- and how playable this little demo is -- that I'm considering dropping the $10 on the full version. Just wish it came with a $10 off coupon for full Spore.
posted by dw at 12:56 PM on June 17, 2008


So how in depth can you get with your creatures creation? Is it just the cosmetics and the shape, or can you start to design it's eating and mating habits?

I only ask because I know that one of the eventual goals is to set up the system where creatures you have created will end up in the single player games of other users.

And I have a great creature in mind: It's tiny, and cute. Like a big eyed sugar-glider, it's the kind of thing that you see and think, "Aww, I want that as a pet..." But what you don't know is that it's a voracious hunter with an insanely high metabolism so it has to kill and eat constantly. It's pack/ swarm tactics allow it to take down animals of any size. And when it's not hunting, it's mating, which when combined with a super short gestation period, this thing becomes capable of destroying entire ecosystems.

Did I mention that it nests in the carcasses of it's kills? Yeah, it does that too.

Because I want to know that there are people out there seriously pissed off that this thing showed up in their game.
posted by quin at 12:59 PM on June 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


Is Spore ever going to really come out? Or is it going to be one of those that is always going to be available "after next quarter"?

Didn't Robin Williams demo the character creator like 2 years ago?

I have this nagging worry that the character creator is the only part of the game they've actually made so far.

And charging for a partial demo? Huh? Are they really that hard up for cash? Why would you not fling the demo far and wide as freely as possible to garner as much interest as possible?

This not only seems to be a game unlike any other, but it is being promoted in a way like any other that I can remember.

Why make 2 demos of just one module of the game? Why charge for a demo in the first place? Why put it out so far in advance of release?

Will Wright is obviously a genius, but not much of this makes sense to me. I think he may have fallen victim to believing his own press. Somewhere I heard someone say something to the effect of "Spore should be the last game you have to buy, because the replay value is truly infinite".

I don't know enough about the project to know if that is true, but it is clear there are high hopes for this game.
posted by Ynoxas at 1:01 PM on June 17, 2008


Also of interest to those code/steganography geeks is how Spore embeds all the content of your creation into the alpha channel of a .png file.

For 200 freaking megabytes this demo better encode an entire damn DNA sequence
posted by spiderwire at 1:03 PM on June 17, 2008


This game is being advertised on Myspace's homepage right now, presumably they (whoever makes it Maxis, EA) paid for the ad space.

Isn't this post considered just advertising/viral marketing for this game? Is meta-filter getting paid for pushing this?
posted by peppito at 1:04 PM on June 17, 2008


Go ahead and flag it. I dare you.
posted by Dave Faris at 1:07 PM on June 17, 2008


Go ahead and flag it. I dare you.

Yikes, are you a viral marketer?
posted by peppito at 1:09 PM on June 17, 2008


viral marketer?

Well, he is blogging about Spore!

*rimshot*

See... Because a spore is kind of like a virus...

Nevermind.

posted by quin at 1:14 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh no! Not advertising! Not someone writing about a product that has a monetary component! Not a chance for a bit of free fun! This is worse than Hitler!
posted by Mister_A at 1:17 PM on June 17, 2008


Well, this demo is making me finally come around to upgrading to Leopard. Grumble grumble 125$ grumble.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 1:19 PM on June 17, 2008


Marketing though it may be, this is pretty sweet. I, too, am amazed that they're charging for a demo - thus making this the demo for the demo - but I guess they're presuming they can double-dip for the hardcore gamer/consumer. Free money, as far as they're concerned, if even a fraction of their potential audience buys the $10 demo. When you add up all the numbers, you're basically having people pay $5 to get their feet wet creating characters - while at the same time making them itch to play your game!

Also, this is the first game to have intrigued me in a very long while.
posted by Sticherbeast at 1:23 PM on June 17, 2008


So there ARE suckers that will spend $10 for a commercial.

I don't know about this game but I do know I am going to be rich.
posted by tkchrist at 1:27 PM on June 17, 2008


So there ARE suckers that will spend $10 for a commercial.

Alternatively, there are creative people who simply can't wait another three months and are willing to pay a slight premium to get part of the game (and arguably the most interesting part) right now. Stop pooing on those of us who're having fun with this.
posted by wanderingmind at 1:31 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Kids who grow up playing spore are going to be very hard to convince that making monsters through genetic engineering is a bad thing. Should make for an interesting future.
posted by mullingitover at 1:33 PM on June 17, 2008 [4 favorites]


Why make 2 demos of just one module of the game? Why charge for a demo in the first place? Why put it out so far in advance of release?

So he can charge for the second one.
Because he can.
I believe they are going to use some of the generated creatures to populate the game.
posted by Mr_Zero at 1:35 PM on June 17, 2008


tkchrist, I had the same thought many, many years ago when large corporate logos became mandatory on expensive shirts. It wasn't enough to but a shirt from Designer X, you had to have a huge garish logo proving that you bought from Designer X - you were paying to advertise for Designer X. This is a different case altogether.
posted by Mister_A at 1:41 PM on June 17, 2008


Stop pooing on those of us who're having fun with this.

Seriously. I have thrown away $5 on a lot dumber things than this.
posted by fusinski at 1:42 PM on June 17, 2008 [9 favorites]


Well, he is blogging about Spore!

He just threatened me that if I flag his post about a free Mini-Game (oo ooo ooh), he's going to do something to me (who knows what?), obviously I've disrespected his bread and butter.

Flagged.
posted by peppito at 1:44 PM on June 17, 2008


This is a different case altogether.

I would argue that is not really all that different.

I applaud the marketing of this game. They have managed to sustain this nearly drooling frenzy among the fan-boys and gadget blogs for what? Almost five years? Either they really have something. Or they really know how to make it look like they have something.

Now call me cynical but haven't we seen the process repeat itself ad infinitum on the internets? And does it not 99% of the time end up as a massive disappointment. Well. I'm sure this time must be different.

I'm glad all the kids are excited. I know you all like your toys. It's adorable. Honestly. Better to be excited than unduly cynical. It really is. But. How many Metafilter posts does it warrant, this being number 3 or four, before it even comes out? What is there to say? "OOooh I can't wait!" "Ooooh. Me too..."

I agree the game looks kinda neat. But pardon me if I reserve my enthusiasm for when the frigg'n thing actually comes out and people star playing it.
posted by tkchrist at 2:00 PM on June 17, 2008


Metafilter: I have thrown away $5 on a lot dumber things than this.


It was unavoidable, really.
posted by Phantomx at 2:05 PM on June 17, 2008 [4 favorites]


Seriously. I have thrown away $5 on a lot dumber things than this.

Me too.

It's not what people do with their money or people's tastes that are at issue. Hey. Knock yourself out.

It's the weird sustained hype, that we have seen twice before now, over what is until now very attractive and pretty vapor-ware. And now monetized (and not all that entertaining) hype, none the less. The link to this thing is everywhere already.

I think Metafilter should have a slightly higher bar than that. Only slightly.
posted by tkchrist at 2:07 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's the weird sustained hype...over what is until now very attractive and pretty vapor-ware.

Spore is Barrack Obama! Crap, wait, wrong thread.
posted by inigo2 at 2:09 PM on June 17, 2008


Intel only. My G5 weeps.
posted by churl at 2:12 PM on June 17, 2008


peppito, I think you're barking up the wrong tree on this one. Let it go or take it to metatalk.

just one module of the game?

Character creators are funny things. They're sandboxes, and some folks see them as the thing you have to do before you play the game while other folks see them as a very fun thing that has a game attached as a bonus.

Look at the Mii system on the wii; look at the custom characters stuff in Tony Hawk, or any western-style RPG worth its salt; look at the avatar builders at Yahoo! or any number of other sites. Look at, in fact, every pen-and-paper RPG ever.

Charging for the creator is unusual; putting the creator out ahead of time is less so, and putting out a limited demo of the creator is more or less a gimme once you've decided to charge for the whole thing. If I were them, I'd have dropped the whole creator for free and left it at that, but they're a giant game company marketing like the most anticipated PC game in years, and I'm some guy on the internet.
posted by cortex at 2:12 PM on June 17, 2008


I wish I could spell.
posted by inigo2 at 2:13 PM on June 17, 2008


Want to run the Spore Creature Creator demo? Running Process Explorer? Go die in a fire.
posted by chrominance at 2:20 PM on June 17, 2008


(I mean, jfc, it's a DEMO, why does it have SecuROM in it?)
posted by chrominance at 2:20 PM on June 17, 2008


So there ARE suckers that will spend $10 for a commercial.

Flagged as derail. If you want to belittle people who saw The Incredible Hulk then post something to the blue about it.
posted by dw at 2:23 PM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


This FPP should be erased because it's obviously an advertisement for Spore, Microsoft Windows and OSX. They say it's free, but is it really free when you have to buy a PC or a Mac?

I have a SNES in perfect working condition and if this trial was really free I should be able to play it there.
posted by Memo at 2:26 PM on June 17, 2008


Awesome! For those that aren't quite getting why this is so cool, some of us have been waiting for this game for a year or so. And we haven't been waiting to play yet another sim game, and we're not (well, I'm not, anyway) so terribly excited about the game play itself.

What I've been looking forward to is the chance to play around with the next-gen user-created content and procedural animation. Which, now that I read the sentence again, sounds like a bunch of buzz words. Regardless, you get a deformable blob, you add stuff to it however the hell you want to, and then you can lead it around and make it dance.

Personally, I think it is incredibly cool. Is it worth $50? Probably not. Hell, for some folks it might not be worth $10... I suppose it might not even be worth $5 + $5 off the game that I'm planning to buy anyway... but it pretty certainly worth free.
posted by Squid Voltaire at 3:01 PM on June 17, 2008


Flagged as derail. If you want to belittle people who saw The Incredible Hulk then post something to the blue about it.


Bruce Banner drinks Mountain Dew. Tony Stark likes Burger King. It's crucial to the charachters.
posted by tkchrist at 3:08 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Intel only? Boo.

I guess "getting a new laptop" has now changed from "when snow leopard ships" to "when snow leopard or spore ships, whichever is sooner"
posted by Arturus at 4:25 PM on June 17, 2008


or is spore proper going to include ppc support? anyone know?
posted by Arturus at 4:25 PM on June 17, 2008


Nope, spore proper will not include ppc support.

http://www.spore.com/what/specs_spore
posted by J-Garr at 4:52 PM on June 17, 2008


My current computer can barely run City of Heroes, which is an outdated fossil of a game despite constant upgrades to it. I'm assuming Spore will make my computer curl up into a fetal position and cry for its mother.

Think I'll pass.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:05 PM on June 17, 2008


Bah, it's just pre-order right now, says it will be released tomorrow. And my activation email still hasn't arrived...

Still, my daughter (who is nine) is having a lot of fun with it so far.
posted by marble at 5:19 PM on June 17, 2008


You mean "cry for it's mother board."
posted by tkchrist at 5:24 PM on June 17, 2008


I love the Creature Creator, but I realized I was feeling a little creatively challenged as I was downloading it. So I pulled up a list of unusual English words as inspiration! Some choice ones I found so far:

chirotonsor - "An alternate title for a barber." I made him look like a red-striped barber shop pole. His neck, it is long.

dactylion - "The tip of the middle finger." He is an angry alien.

scacchic(on) - "Pertaining to the game of chess, or to chess pieces." They have a king, naturally.

slubberdegullion - "A filthy, slobbering person." Damn, I love English...

strikhedon - "The pleasure of being able to say to hell with it." Now that's just awesome.

Now if EA would only release the full version already...
posted by Rhaomi at 5:29 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have Will Wright fatigue, but I now have to admit that perhaps all these months (years?) of Spore hype have been justified. It's amazing how intuitive the interface is. Without reading any of the documentation, it only took me about ten minutes to whip together something pretty much just the way I imagined it as the demo was downloading: a radially symmetical creature with three legs, three arms, three eyes, a mouth on the bottom of an elogated torso, and a blowhole on the top. And then the engine was able to make it run about, dance, and display various emotions. Impressive. That there'll be a full game later this year is just the icing on the cake... they've done some truly groundbreaking things with just this one small part they are showing us.
posted by Robin Kestrel at 5:37 PM on June 17, 2008


80,000+ creatures already? Fuck.
posted by sir_rubixalot at 5:51 PM on June 17, 2008


Saw lots of demos around, downloaded the editor trial with little to no expectations, within a few minutes my jaw dropped.

Then I picked it up, painted it a nice greenish hue and stuck it back right on my knee, 'cause you never know, an extra jaw might come in handy.
posted by _dario at 6:22 PM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


This (nsfw) creation is both hilarious and nightmare inducing.
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 6:35 PM on June 17, 2008 [8 favorites]


In other news, astronomers are getting better at 'seeing' planets around stars. Admittedly, we can't technically see anything, because the reflected light off a planet outside our solar system is too faint to reach even our most advanced equipmtent... so far. However, by calculating subtle changes in a star's trajectory, astronomers are able to determine with a fair level of certainty which stars out there have planets revolving around them.

It's like a wobble effect. A star that's got nothing around it affecting its gravitational pull just kinda goes straight as it moves through space. However, other stars don't go straight, and the laws of physics indicate that something must be causing those stars to wobble. Do a little math, and astronomers can figure just what kinda large heavenly bodies are spinning around a given star.

We haven't gotten good enough at it yet to determine Earth-like planets. Back in 1995, we were lucky to find a planet about the size of Jupiter, and you could fit over a thousand planets the size of Earth inside Jupiter. However, over ten years later our scientists have perfected the procedure, and can now find planets that are less than ten times the mass of our own.

Now since we can't visually see these planets even with our most advanced telescopes, they are essentially hidden from us - as are any possible things or creatures living on them.

Spore is based on a premise called Drake's Equation. There are so many stars in the known universe, if even a slim percentage of stars out in space have planets capable of supporting Life As We Know It, there's still potentially thousands of Earth-like planets out there teeming with life. However they are so far apart from each other that the odds of any two civilizations of carbon based lifeforms that achieve space flight do so at the same time and can actually reach one another? Let's just say don't rush to Vegas and place your bets.

The odds that there's life out there kinda like us are actually pretty good. The odds that we can prove that with legitimate evidence? Not so good, unless we can figure out how to see other solar systems' planets better, or do better math. Before 1995 we couldn't detect Non-Sol planets AT ALL. We've come a long way in a short time. Hopefully a couple few centuries from now we'll be able to compare what Spore comes up with, to what's actually out there. ...Maybe it'll only take a couple few decades! ...or maybe never, but let's try to be positive! *smirk*
posted by ZachsMind at 7:58 PM on June 17, 2008


> (I mean, jfc, it's a DEMO, why does it have SecuROM in it?)

Wow, these giant publishing companies are just... Wow.

Make a bad decision and then tenaciously stick to it against all reason no matter what.
posted by sdodd at 8:31 PM on June 17, 2008


influx--check out the bittorrent sites. If it's not up by now it should be up somewhere soon.
posted by zardoz at 9:20 PM on June 17, 2008


Huh. It actually works on my machine. That was a pleasant surprise. So far I've made really crappy lame bipeds.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:44 PM on June 17, 2008


However, I think I'll need a new graphic card before getting the game as it had a noticeable lag when I applied textures to a creature.

It's not your video card. Much of what is done here is procedural, and so CPU-bound, as far as I know. The actual hardware specs for the game, recently released, are very low indeed. I've got one of the gruntier cards on the market and it takes a moment for texturing, too. My CPU is 3 years old, and is the bottleneck.

For 200 freaking megabytes this demo better encode an entire damn DNA sequence

You're kidding, right? 200Mb is nothing these days. Half of the demos for major games released in, say, the least year have been over 1Gb, and under 500Mb is almost unheard-of.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:57 PM on June 17, 2008


This (nsfw) creation is both hilarious and nightmare inducing.

He's adorable!
posted by homunculus at 11:13 PM on June 17, 2008


So there were rumors that they would use 3D printers so that you could buy your own plastic mold of the creatures that you create. I want that. If I can't buy fucking flying cars in 2008, I want my own fucking plastic toys, damn it.
posted by amuseDetachment at 11:42 PM on June 17, 2008


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gotm9PY4EVg

Best ever? YOU decide!
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:33 AM on June 18, 2008


I wish I could try it, but OS 10.5.3 + Nvidia 8800 = World of Warcraft fatally craps its pants. I'd give up WoW for the full version of Spore, but not for a demo. Hopefully this'll be sorted out in time for the proper release.
posted by rifflesby at 4:35 AM on June 18, 2008


Played with this last night, and it's just as fun as the previous demonstrations/Williams demo suggested. It really is a marvel in UI design -- I figured out how everything worked just by recognizing the shapes (arrows, circle, etc) and correctly guessing what they were used for. Fun!

Not sure what the EA Registration is all about. I registered with a throwaway account so it would stop nagging me. I guess it's to track my creatures should they make their way into somebody else's universe?
posted by cavalier at 8:21 AM on June 18, 2008


The one part of the UI that wasn't immediately intuitive is how to enlarge the core starting body shape, once you move/mangle it... I was ending up with all these snake-like body shapes. If you click on an individual spine bone, and then roll your mouse wheel, you can add some meat back on dem bones.
posted by Dave Faris at 8:25 AM on June 18, 2008


PedoBear does not beat SeGoat. Fortunately no one's figured out how to replicate TubGirl. Civilization may yet survive this.

I don't wanna go to work. I wanna stay home and make lame useless uncreative bipeds all day. I wanna be frustrated that no matter how much I play with this stupid demo, I am ultimately simply a hack staring in the face of nature. I can't come up with an original concept for a functional quadruped that doesn't look stupid or ...ugh I hate going to work when I have a new toy. Being a grownup sucks.

I'm not sure what the EA registration was about either. And early on it said something like allowing me one free pass. Is this crippleware? Am I gonna click on the icon tomorrow and not be allowed to make anything unless I pay? Should we all get our pitchforks and torches out now, just in case?

I wanna make a creature that has eyeballs on its fingers but can't seem to figure out how to do that. It wouldn't lemme put the eyeballs on the fingers. Guess I'll try again after work. *sigh*
posted by ZachsMind at 8:33 AM on June 18, 2008


Fortunately no one's figured out how to replicate TubGirl.

Hmm. One of those spitting attachments...
posted by cortex at 8:43 AM on June 18, 2008


Doesn't work with Linux and Wine... What a bummer.
posted by Geckwoistmeinauto at 12:12 PM on June 18, 2008


ZachsMind: "I'm not sure what the EA registration was about either. And early on it said something like allowing me one free pass. Is this crippleware?"

The game allows you to try it once before having to make an EA account.
posted by Memo at 1:02 PM on June 18, 2008


Did you make that creature, Lazlo, or just link to the video ... because it's getting play over on Buzzfeed.
posted by Dave Faris at 1:52 PM on June 18, 2008


BTW, if you do buy the full version, you need to uninstall the trial version before you can install the new version. (And here's a couple of my creations.)
posted by Dave Faris at 3:34 PM on June 18, 2008


I wonder how much they're going to ruin the fun by trying to censor creatures people make that are SeGoat, have "nudity", or smoke dope.

The spitting weapons in the demo are, alas, wholly inappropriate to the creation of GirlTub.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 3:42 PM on June 18, 2008


I wanna make a creature that has eyeballs on its fingers but can't seem to figure out how to do that. It wouldn't lemme put the eyeballs on the fingers.
The way I'd hack that is to use the split appendage feature. Make an appendage, hold CTRL, click and hold on a limb to break off.

So, you'd have to make a hand 'by hand', so to speak, then add an eye at the end of each finger.

These are my guys.
posted by eurasian at 4:23 PM on June 18, 2008




Can anyone else figure out how to make the "Gobsterclaw" jaw open vertically (like for the 'phatburd' demo creature) instead of horizontally? I want my insectile giraffe creature to have a parrot mouth.

eurasian and Dave, your guys are badass.
posted by bettafish at 7:16 PM on June 18, 2008


I don't think you can turn it sideways. I think if you want a bird mouth, you need to get the full version, and go with the "cantovis" mouth.
posted by Dave Faris at 7:36 PM on June 18, 2008


If you buy the full version, does it include options which in the demo you click on them and get an error, or are those only available this fall? I assume you get the two or three extra backdrops. Not sure if that alone is worth plopping down ten bucks or whatever.

If you buy the full version, does the test drive allow you to exit the stupid circle? I wanna see what some of these would look like at a full gallop.

If the demo works on my machine with no lag or errors, you think it's safe to assume the full game's gonna too?
posted by ZachsMind at 7:37 PM on June 18, 2008


Thanks for the superb link, Armitage.

BF kept running over to see what I was laughing so hilariously at.
posted by The ____ of Justice at 7:39 PM on June 18, 2008


...am I falling hook line and sinker for the obvious marketing ploy of 'first hit free but if you want the really good junk it'll cost ya' ? Feels like Will Wright just became my new dealer (had previously been Jack Emmert but he left).
posted by ZachsMind at 7:42 PM on June 18, 2008


Looks like you can't reload your creatures after a few hours? Lame.
I'm still of pissed at Maxis because my copy of Sim City 4 didn't work, and I had to download it instead. While the creature editor is immensely fun, I'm worried that I'm going to put a lot of creative energy into spore and then have some bug totally ruin it.
posted by Citizen Premier at 7:46 PM on June 18, 2008


Full version of creator doesn't let you exit the circle. Full version of creator gives you extra pieces to put in your mr. potato head, as well as 2 extra backdrops, plus a few dozen more skinning options. Don't know about the reloading pictures or the errors. I haven't had those issues.
posted by Dave Faris at 7:50 PM on June 18, 2008




Lasagna. Now.
posted by cortex at 10:21 PM on June 18, 2008


Simulator? No, not really. Game? It doesn't quite seem so. Toy? Could be.
posted by NortonDC at 10:37 PM on June 18, 2008


NortonDC, you hit the nail on the head. Wright's talked extensively in interviews the past few years that Spore has been designed with the intent of being what the player wants it to be. Rather than force the player through a linear plotline where you have to commit stuff to memory or learn certain skillsets to accomplish goals, Spore attempts to be easy to learn and easier to manipulate. If you wanna play at the beginning you can start at the cellular level but if you wanna jump right into making creatures you can do that too.

Whether that's actually how it's gonna work when it hits the stores is anyone's guess. I imagine the "exploring space" part of the game will not be available at the very beginning - that one has to do stuff to unlock it. However, if they skip that and make it all available at the very beginning, I think Spore might revolutionize how game designers think. I hope so, cuz frankly I'm sick and tired of the concept of 'levelling' to get to the good stuff. If I buy a coffee maker, I don't have to make fifty cups of regular coffee before I can get a cappuccino out of it. If the thing can make cappuccino, it'll either be able to make it out of the box, or people won't buy it. I've never understood why video games couldn't work the same way.
posted by ZachsMind at 12:40 AM on June 19, 2008


Because if you can do everything right out of the box, do you think you will stay engaged for long? If you're only interested in the space scenario, then you'll get bored with the game after a day or two. And while he'll get the money from you buying the program in the first place, he won't get the money for the subsequent add-ons, which are inevitable, ala the Sims.
posted by Dave Faris at 4:55 AM on June 19, 2008


Can anyone else figure out how to make the "Gobsterclaw" jaw open vertically (like for the 'phatburd' demo creature) instead of horizontally? I want my insectile giraffe creature to have a parrot mouth.

Hold Tab when adjusting the jaw. You get another axis or two of rotation that way.
posted by Spatch at 6:11 AM on June 19, 2008




Thanks, Spatch! Not only is my giraffe thingamabob much better looking, but I have concocted a ... well, it's a hippo-frog-orca-gorilla thing, I think, with a sideways opening mouth. I quite like it.

Behold, my thingy-whatsits.
posted by bettafish at 12:25 PM on June 20, 2008


Brainy, I had the same problem when I tried to run it on my Macbook. Turns out the GMA 950 video hardware isn’t supported for the game under OS X. Apparently, the exact same computer will run the game under Windows XP with Bootcamp. The word is that the OS X version of the game is actually running under a Windows-compatibility layer. Maxis didn’t even bother to make an OS X-native port, so the Mac hardware requirements are greater than those of the PC version.

That pretty much does it for me; It looks fantastic and I’ve wanted to play this game since it was first announced and maybe even before, but no way I’m buying a new computer or switching to Windows just for this game.
posted by ijoshua at 6:25 PM on June 20, 2008




Someone's going to hell.
posted by EarBucket at 8:18 AM on June 22, 2008


With some tweaking to two files, the demo can be run on Macs using OS X 10.4.11, maybe even others if you have all the other requirements. First you do this, and then you do this. Probably won't work when the full game comes out, but at least I can goof around and waste time with the demo.
posted by Orb at 12:12 PM on June 25, 2008


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