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Jaw-droppingly painfully amazing demo: SPORE - Blather, Rinse, Repeat
March 11th, 2005
11:56 am

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Jaw-droppingly painfully amazing demo: SPORE
I'm currently at the Game Developers' Conference. Sitting in a conference room, a lecture about to start.

The previous talk I was at was given by Will Wright, creator of Sim City and The Sims. He's been working on another simulation game, but this one goes from the level of bacteria (with a Pac-man style of gameplay), evolving up to creatures that fight eachother (a combat/levelling up gameplay style that feels like Diablo) to a tribal management game (think Populous) to a city building sim (SimCity) to a nationbuilding game (Risk, Civilization) to the solar system, the stellar neighborhood, and the galaxy (think of Master of Orion, X-Com, and every Sci Fi movie you've seen from "The Day The Earth Stood Still" to "Close Encounters" to "X Files").

Any one of these games seems engaging, but the scope is amazing. Add to this the flexibility given to the player to author and own their own creatures, buildings, and vehicles, with an automatic asynchornous method for sharing content between players - watching this demo (with very little exaggeration) HURT, it was so amazing.


I understand he'll demo it at E3, which signals to me that it's actually going to turn into a game, and not just a tech demo. Look for it on shelves someday - it's going to be amazing.

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From:tsmaster
Date:March 12th, 2005 03:41 am (UTC)
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Which keynote? Seems there was some sort of phantom intro keynote by Raph Koster about his Theory of Fun (read the book), and then J Allard announced the XBox 2 (I guess - the talk at the show was all about the fact that some people in the audience got free HDTVs). I think there was a Nintendo keynote as well.

At some point, they'll say that every talk is a keynote, or they'll say that the Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo talks are sponsored sessions. Either way, it'll be an improvement over the somewhat confusing nomenclature they use today.

Or does "keynote" really mean "corporate shill attempts to hype the audience"?
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From:rejemy
Date:March 11th, 2005 09:52 pm (UTC)
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Damn you WIll Wright for always being three steps ahead of me!
From:ericasco
Date:March 12th, 2005 12:54 am (UTC)

Hmmmmm...

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Around 3 out of the 6 levels of gameplay appeal to me, and the other 3 don't.

Then again, I am not the target audience for any sort of computer game.
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From:tsmaster
Date:March 12th, 2005 03:43 am (UTC)

Re: Hmmmmm...

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Do you have $40 in your pocket?

That's the target market. We just have to figure out how to reach into your corner.


Actually, I kid. I really mean $20.
From:ericasco
Date:March 14th, 2005 02:40 am (UTC)

I do...

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But it's earmarked for things like "lunch" and "overdue library book fines".
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From:tsmaster
Date:March 14th, 2005 02:50 am (UTC)

Re: I do...

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Yeah, I hear that.

And if you do find yourself able to get your hands on this game - the fact that only half of the game directly appeals to you would seem to be less of a deal with Spore than with other games. Wright is a fan of letting you play the game your way.

If you're all about the fish sims and want to colonize the oceans, go to it. The game doesn't lock you into playing the city-building bits if you don't dig that.


I'm kinda tickled about scanning the stars, listening for radio chatter. It's the little stuff.
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