Spore Creatures

Key events

25th September 2008

Spore sales top 1 million

4th September 2008

Spore Creatures

Spore to get first expansion this spring

Spore to get first expansion this spring

Prepare for more Galactic Adventures.

Evolution sim Spore is to get its first expansion pack this spring.

That's according to an invite sent out to US websites such as Kotaku. It states that an event is being held in San Francisco to reveal the "Spore line-up for 2009", including "our first expansion pack, Spore Galactic Adventures".

The invite also reveals the add-on will be "available this spring". Seeing as the main game was released within the same week in the US and Europe, it's reasonable to assume the expansion will arrive around the same time too.

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Spore sales top 1 million

Spore sales top 1 million

More than 25m items now in Sporepedia.

Electronic Arts has announced more than 1 million copies of Spore have been sold since the game launched on September 7th.

What's more, over 25 million player-created creatures, vehicles and buildings to the Sporepedia.

"Spore is a hit," said EA Games president Frank Gibeau, rather unnecessarily. "Will Wright's latest delivers an incredibly diverse game that appeals to casual gamers and the core alike."

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Spore Creatures

Spore Creatures

Pocket monsters? It'll never catch on...

The DS version of Will Wright's galaxy-spanning evolutionary epic was always going to follow in giant footsteps, but there was no reason to think the game couldn't retain some of its creative sprawl when transitioning from PC to DS. After all, it's not like the diminutive handheld hasn't hosted similarly open-ended games in the past. Mix up Animal Crossing with The Sims and sprinkle on a dash of Nintendogs and you've got a winning recipe. Strange, then, that Maxis has instead opted to turn Spore Creatures into a frustratingly linear and repetitive action-adventure.

The game starts with you as a humble sea slug called Oogie. You slither onto dry land with your friend Little Oogie, but no sooner have you set about exploring your new home a mysterious spaceship attacks and beams up your pal. The game then becomes a quest to leapfrog up the evolutionary ladder in order to track down this alien interloper and save Little Oogie.

Spore Creatures quickly establishes the pattern that will dominate the gameplay. Split into a series of planets, each split further into sequences of small islands, your first order of business is to explore your surroundings and find a way to progress to the next area. Unfortunately the camera is a slippery customer, constantly shifting your viewpoint so that what was once up is now left, then right, then down. This means that trying to go in one continuous direction often makes you go in circles unless you constantly reset the camera with the shoulder buttons. Control is via stylus or d-pad, but both leave much to be desired. For a game based on exploration, the fact that exploring makes you feel queasy isn't a good sign.

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Will Wright discusses Spore porn

He's not offended by all the winkies.

Will Wright has said he's not offended by all the penis monsters people have chosen to make with the Spore Creature Creator - adding that in fact, some of them are rather impressive.

Lucy Bradshaw live interview today!

Rounding off Spore Week in style.

Eurogamer will round off Spore Week today with a surprise live interview with executive producer Lucy Bradshaw at 5.30pm UK time (6.30pm CET / 9.30am PST).

Spore Creatures

Genetically codified.

The obvious reaction to Spore Creatures is that it can't hope to rival its big brother - daddy, perhaps - for depth and scope, and that EA's decision to launch it alongside the PC version on 5th September suggests it's a spin-off for a different market. So it's a bit of a surprise to discover Spore on the DS is secretly an action-adventure. We like those.

Wright hints at Spore MMO

Sims man's latest will evolve.

He's referred to his latest project as a 'massively single-player online game' - but despite the failure of The Sims Online, Will Wright has hinted that Spore could evolve into an MMO experience.

Wright has new projects "in the wings"

"Very short term" titles mooted.

Having spent the last eight years creating Spore, Will Wright is now eyeing a range of new projects to sink his teeth into, some of which could be "very short term".

Eurogamer announces Spore Week!

Eurogamer announces Spore Week!

Final game explored and explained.

Earth took seven days (reportedly), but Spore has taken more like seven years - probably longer - and yet emerges from extensive, relatively serene development on 5th September as one of the most anticipated games of the year.

To celebrate its impending arrival, Eurogamer grabbed the nearest aeroplane and flew halfway round the world to interrogate developer Maxis and investigate the finished game at length - and then flew back to bring you Spore Week: a collection of impressions, assets and interviews from our exclusive studio tour.

We'll have new additions throughout the week, but to kick off we have an exclusive, extensive interview with Maxis co-founder and chief designer Will Wright, the brains behind SimCity, The Sims, Spore and some of the best speeches we've ever heard. We know some of you prefer to watch these things rather than reading them, so we've laid out the options for you:

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Maxis' Will Wright

Spore, The Sims and what lies ahead.

You can tell a lot about someone by what's on their desk, and Will Wright is no exception. He may have sold over 100 million copies of The Sims alone, but there's no solid gold plaque adorning his office door; instead there's a simple EA-branded sheet of A4, with his name printed across, that tells you you're in the right place.

EA man wants to charge for Spore content

But will focus on launching game first.

The launch of Will Wright's Spore is still over a month away, but John Riccitiello is already considering whether consumers could be charged for extra content in the future.

Riccitiello: EA quality up "sharply"

"We've turned the corner on that issue."

John Riccitiello believes the fruits of his reappointment as EA boss are beginning to show and has noted a "sharp" rise in the quality of the publisher's games.

Spore Creatures

The evolution will not be televised.

Sometimes it's nice to be reminded that not all games are about guns or cars or zombies. It's refreshing when a producer doesn't bang on and on about the number of weapons or the individual polygon count of the hero's eyelashes or why the enemies have machetes for limbs. It's good when they say things like, "I mean, playing as a carrot is not ideal. But you can do it if you want."

"Europe is the priority for Spore"

Maxis on why we'll get it first.

Speaking exclusively to Eurogamer, Maxis's Patrick Buechner has explained why the game is to be released in Europe on 5th September, two days earlier than in the US.

Spore DS

Surely just a poor man's Viva Pinata.

Surely just a poor man's Viva Pinata.