Review: “Spore” for Mac – part one

I think its safe to say that Spore is one of the biggest game releases for the Mac in a very long time – some might even say ever. There has been a great deal of build up for this title, and with hype like this, sometimes its hard for a game to live up to expectations.

So does it?

In the first part of this review we’ll be taking a look at the first two stages of the game. There are five total:

1) Cell
2) Creature
3) Tribe
4) Civilization
5) Space

Each stage is different, and provides unique challenges to survival in this world.

Cell Stage

In the Cell Stage you’re in a 2 dimensional puddle of primordial soup and your goal is very simple. Eat and survive. You are introduced to the basic concepts of the game, and you’ll quickly find yourself looking for a mate, finding ways to defend yourself from larger creatures, and making choices about your species that will affect the rest of the game.

You can choose to be a carnivore, a herbivore, or an omnivore – and each of these choices will have a direct affect on the later stages of the game.

This level of Spore requires very little from you in the form of critical thinking. You can simply click towards the food that you’d like to eat. Other creatures will come and try to eat you. If they succeed, you start over as another egg and continue on your evolutionary journey.

Eventually you’ll figure out how to best keep your creature alive, and through the mating process, you can add new defensive and offensive traits to your species.

It doesn’t take long to complete the cell stage, and pull yourself out of the primordial ooze.

Creature Stage

When its time to head out on land you’ll need legs, and the Creature Creator comes into play. If you’ve used the creator at all you’ll be right at home, it’s the same thing that was released earlier this year – except you don’t have much to choose from at first.

In this new land you’ll have to hunt around for new parts to evolve yourself, and you’ll also begin attacking other creatures (if you’re a carnivore like me, anyway) wiping out their species, and building yourself up the evolutionary food chain.

You’ll also make friends with other tribes by dancing, singing and posing with them. I spent most of my time destroying others, though.

This stage of the game reminds me very much of the early stages of World of Warcraft, where you spend most of your time just killing wolves or trolls (or whatever those little buggers are called) without doing much else. This can get a little repetitive, although I think one could argue that that might be the point of this stage in the evolutionary process.

At this level you’re concerned with only two things – eating to stay alive (which will involve hunting and killing other creatures if you’re a carnivore), and mating (which lets you into the Creature Creator so you can make your beast more formidable against enemies).

As the game continues beyond these two stages things should get more complicated, and much more interesting. I’ll be spending more time with it tonight, and will update the review with a link to part two once that is completed.

So far, I have to say that I find the game enjoyable, but repetitive. Hopefully, that will not be the case as we move into the more complicated stages of life.

Comments

  1. I was really looking forward to this but the exclusion of the 950 in the MacBook’s and mini is really kind of a disappointment, especially when on the PC side they are supported…I’ll wait for the iPhone version until I get a new MB.

  2. I have heard on Leo Laporte’s, The Tech Guy Show, that there is a “Hack” available that makes it run on both, the Mac Book & the Mac Mini with the GMA950.

  3. I am excited to try this…thanks for the review!

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