Spore – Evolution has no surprises

Human fascination with playing God. Are we really so displeased with how things are? How come that we always think that we can do a better job then anyone else?

Oh, these questions are deep. We are a selfish species aren’t we? No wonder only cows get whisked away into space by aliens and taken to other worlds. Us? naaah, we are to busy wondering why they took the cow and not that annoying neighbourhood boy Jimmy.

So where am I going with this? Spore of course! The game has slightly taken over this planet by satisfying something you cannot get from anyone. Your constant need to satisfy your megalomania.

To me it seems that we are taking a certain rout in gaming. Where the gamer has full control over their destiny and the destiny of the in game characters. Now being given the control of our own destiny is all fine and dandy, but to be responsible for others is where mankind shows his ugly underoooz. Then again how much control do you have in certain games that claim to give you endless power? In Black & White (if you never played it, you missed out. It was a sensation when it came out because it was actually quite original) your power was limited by the prayers from your people, that is why you had to be extra careful not to have your giant cow step on them. If you accidentally killed them they would be very cross.
Hence unlimited power is an illusion, because you are bound to play servant to thousands of peoples needs. It is tiresome and you’d have to be an octopus to do gods work.

Now, to Spore. You are a little cell in the vast ocean of scary creatures. You can select your diet in the beginning of the game, which I found ridiculous because it took away from the “you are what you eat” concept. Since I wanted good will and peace on Beta Zed (shut up), I decided my spore, What ever planet it came from, to be a vegan. After he bravely evolved to a big cell and had me giving it a light round of applause, it was time to name the species. Since this planet was to be the perfect Eden of people loving each other forcefully by me, I gave it the name Dipshitosorous.

After dipshitosaurus put his first steps on land, it was a loved and often a very pink creature.
Mutation after mutation made him the most dominating species on this planet.(wait a minute, what about all the ones i made friends with??) Here is where the “civilization” aspect takes place. You bring other tribes gift baskets even if they so willingly want to slaughter you. I made friends with all of them and now I was able to establish a City and nation. Now trying to take a pacifist rout I had to convert all other nations into my religion. Once that was done I blasted into space, kidnapping other species and bringing them to Beta Zed for scientific study.
Here is where I stopped, because I played 5 hour straight and the game was just progressing to quickly.
My perfect Eden went to non tolerance of other species because they had a rump on their heads and kidnapping other races. I guess the creators of spore never heard of the Prime directive (watch star trek).

What I was hoping for is once you laid down the basics of your design, that random evolution would take its place. For instance, if you have wings but decided to walk a lot, that evolution would deemed them unnecessary and have them made smaller or removed entirely.
I appreciate the concept of the creators giving you full design capability, it is impressive.
But to satisfy my curiosity about the future and look at its evolutionary twists and surprises, I’d say it would be cheaper to just buy a magnifying glass and decide the destiny of the ants in your back yard.

So here we are, In a few hours achieved world domination and all I have is a feeling of emptiness. All sentient beings look like the poor design i supplied the game with. No real surprises.
I guess this entire game just lacks surprise. I hope in future attempts of creating games such as this will gives us more of the element of the un known, because when you given full control you can basically predict the future (just read a history book, same thing).
I think it is interesting how the gaming industry wants to give the gamer all the control. Because if they do and you turn out to be disappointed, then the gaming industry can just turn around and say “Hey, we gave you full control to make it fun on your own, it is your fault that you are so utterly boring”.
This will give game creators a cause to remove the elements of surprise, making us entertained. We are paying them to be entertained, not to entertain ourselves.
Spore was somewhat entertaining yes, I cant say that it was a waste of money for me. I just simply worry that the gaming industry is now becoming very lazy.
If anything this game got me to reflect on Black & White and appreciate it more, since it was a game where you still had some element of surprise.
Non the less, I think that gamers with megalomania and a twisted minds will be very entertained indeed, because they can create a very funky creature with very funky houses and incredibly funky architecture.

Me? I am staying in the void of space for the time being, kidnapping me some creatures and visit the ants outside.

Enjoy The evolution of Dipshitosaurus

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