Spore isn't actually a game, it's 5 bland-as-stale-cornflakes mini-games tacked on to a creature creator. You build your creature, you play the mini game. Now you understand Spore. Creature creation, which is the reason most people bothered putting the disc in their hard drive, also feels like a limited mini-game. You'll see the term "evolution" used a lot to describe Spore, but there's actually none to be had. Jaws, snouts, claws, arms, and body shape are determined in a play-doh stage at different times in the level. If you don't like your herbivorous 5" phallus-worm, just check into an evolution stop you can change the thing into a hulking 10' grizzly-wolf. Your creature does not evolve. You make a creature out of play-doh and run it around to collect more play-doh bits. Nothing else you do matters significantly. When you're done with this stage and have finally given your creature those +5 mandibles of death, you move on to a couple of RTS stages. There you will realise that those lovely teeth and claws and surrogate urethras you painstakingly saved up for do NOTHING; it's appearance only from here on out. And it is definitely a rocky road from here on out. The first RTS stage is a loving (sort of) ripoff of Age of Empires. Only with less intelligent villagers, and an extremely limited tech tree, and lower population limits, and fewer buildings, and poor combat, and poor balance, and fewer types of units, and all right; it's nothing like Age of Empires. It's an awful, awful bastardisation of what an RTS should play like and, coming from someone who grew up when Ensemble Studios was in their prime, it makes you want to heave and retch and gouge your eyes out with a brooch. The stage after is a terrible take on Rise of Nations. After that you get a spaceship and fly around pointlessly colonizing planets in your forsaken, empty universe. The creator portion in these stages switches from designing creatures to designing buildings and spaceships. It's like Lego, if Lego were a 5-minute exercise in pathetically sticking plasticine spheres and cubes together for no purpose at all. There's also the DRM issue. You can install Spore three times, and then you're locked out of a game that you've purchased. It's draconian to say the least. I am filled with regret for buying this game.
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