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Archive for April 10th, 2009

Kotaku Preview: Spore Galactic Adventures, it’s ups and downs

Posted by ballightning on April 10, 2009

 

And this time we have impressions from Kotaku. This one looks at the upside and the downsides to Galactic Adventures

 

What Needs Improvement?
Spare Me Spore: Whatever else this expansion accomplishes, it’s not going to change anyone’s mind about the game. It doesn’t address all the issues critics attacked the game for; it doesn’t do anything particularly new or different to the established method of playing the game. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad expansion – it just means it’s almost exclusively “for the fans.”

Wings are in the way: You play the adventure mode pretty much the same way you play the creature mode – from a behind the shoulders view. However, because it’s an adventure and not a virgin planet, there is often a lot of stuff on screen at one time that narrows your field of vision (buildings, trees, cars, etc.). This kind of makes it hard to play the Captain like you would an adventure game – especially if they have wings that get in the way whenever they walk into a building-dense town to talk to an NPC.

Adventure ADD: Twenty minutes wasn’t really enough time to get a handle on how intuitive the adventure editor was – but I get the distinct feeling that all of the stuff you can do (planet editing, object editing, NPC dialogue trees) will likely overwhelm more than a few seasoned Spore players. Even my demo master said he’d start to create an adventure then “get ADD” and never finish it. He’d get side-tracked by some neat gimmick he invented (like disguising mines as cakes – see below) and forget what he wanted his enemy NPCs to do when they encounter the Captain (follow, territorial, defend, etc.).

 

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G4 TV: Spore Galactic Adventures Impressions

Posted by ballightning on April 10, 2009

Yet another preview from EA’s showing on Wednesday evening, this one is from G4 TV.

I played a few missions and was impressed with the variety of possibilities. The first mission put me on a planet at war with a group of invading aliens. Allied with the indigenous species, my goal was to infiltrate and destroy the enemy drop ship. At the beginning, I snuck by an ongoing battle between the two factions and fought my way through some guards to find a gate. Blowing up the gate revealed an enemy installation that holds a teleporter to the ship, which was behind a red force field. The head of the guard has the red key, which drops the force field. Once inside the ship, I had to navigate the corridors to find the ship’s reactor, and after destroying it I had 30 seconds to escape. Once I escaped and the mission was completed, I was rated on my speed and completion percentage. If the level is shared, times will be compared to other Spore players on a leaderboard. Sweet!

So how complicated is it to create a mission like that? Not very. Assuming all of the assets are already created, a mission like this could be constructed in 20 to 30 minutes. The scripting engine is simple, but powerful. Each mission can have five acts, which advance when goals are met. These goals can be things like “blow up the gate”, “use the teleporter”, “blow-up the reactor”, and “escape the ship” (which is actually just using another teleporter). There are many more possibilities here.

The battle that I saw when I first landed was simple to set up. The two factions were set to continuously respawn and be aggressive toward each other. After that, their awareness radius is set to allow them to see each other. Instant battle. Power users will be able to tweak their stats if they want the battle to play out in a certain way.

To completely contrast this mission, the next one I was shown was Spore’s take on football. I beamed down onto a giant football field and grabbed a key, which functions as a ball. The key could also be disguised as another object, but remains functionally the same as a key if the creator chose. Grabbing the key triggers the defensive creatures that charge you and attempt to stun and then kill you, much like linebackers. Your job is to run between the defense to the end zone, which is activated by the key. It plays out extremely quickly, but is very fun.

The last mission I saw before diving into the editor was a bowling-type game. I had to attack a creature that, when hit, would fly off in a straight line along the ground. By aiming my attack, I had to hit objects with the creature. After each object, the creature would reset and I could take another shot.

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IGN – Spore Galactic Adventures hands on preview

Posted by ballightning on April 10, 2009

IGN also had a preview on wednesday, along with G4 TV and Gamespot. They had pretty much the same impressions.

The first mission, created by Maxis for this demo, is called Mothership Down. It’s designed to be played by your Space Captain, which is basically a heroic creature that you build up, sort of like Spore’s version of Captain Kirk. The mission begins with you being shot down over by hostile aliens. One of your crewmates nearby tells you (yes, you can input dialogue bubbles so you can have conversation cutscenes) that the enemy mothership has to be destroyed in order for you to get extracted. To do that, you have to get across or around a battle raging nearby between your troops and those of the enemy. Then you have to battle up to the gate of a fortress and destroy the gate to gain access inside. 

To show off some of the tools available to you, the courtyard of the fortress is littered with the kind of red barrels that tend to explode. You also have to kill one of the aliens who’s holding the red key that you need to get past the red energy field to the transporter that “beams” you aboard the mothership. Then you’ll have to battle through the corridors to the reactor, blast the reactor till it explodes, and race to escape the mothership before it detonates. 

That’s a pretty complex chain of events, and far beyond anything seen in the original Spore, where many missions revolved around the idea of killing X number of creatures, or finding-and-retrieving some object for somebody. 

It’s not all about combat, though. You can create plenty of non-combat adventures. For instance, the second adventure that we checked out dealt with a foot race between creatures. In this one, you have to get from the start line to the finish line, but how you get there is up to you. 

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Uber Creation Contest – Win a copy of Galactic Adventures!

Posted by ballightning on April 10, 2009

Uber Creation Contest Spore

 

UPDATE (15th April):  We are now offering a prize for the winning entry, a free copy of Galactic Adventures! The creator of the winning submission will win a copy of Galactic Adventures, and an exclusive interview with Sporedum. We have also increased the amount of creations  you can enter which you made  to 4, so start entering them now! 

 

Over the last year, ever since the Creature Creator was released in June 2008, there has been some amazing creations created. In a quest to find the best of these 94,000,000 creations, Sporedum and Sporeprograms have teamed together to find the best creations, in the Uber Creation Contest! There are 4 categories for creations to enter: Creatures, Buildings, Vehicles and Spaceships.

And guess what! You get to decide who wins!

 

If you have any questions, post a comment below.

 

How to Submit: 

• Find any creation, made by any user.

• Get the png link and the sporepedia link.

• send your entries to sporedum@gmail.com (You can only submit one of your own creations, but we’d like you to submit creations from other users!)


How to Email:

• The title should be “Uber Creation Contest”

• Inside the email include a link to the png image and a link to the sporepedia

 

Prize 

The person who created the winning creation will win a copy of Spore: Galactic Adventures!

 

Judging : 

• There is an internal judging proces which we have organized to select the top 10 creations for each category

• The finalists will be posted up here at sporedum, and then you can vote on the winning creations at Sporeprograms!

• The judges include: Grimbot, Virakotxa, smallboy1995beta_psi and techno605 (and maybe 1 or 2 more we are still organzing)

• Judges and people affliated with Maxis, Sporedum or SporePrograms may not have any of their creations entered in the contest.

 

Rules: 

The creations: 

• Must be playble using Spore 1.3, however you can use creepy and cute parts. Asymmetry and AddDNA are allowed, as these are still playable. However you cannot use hacked parts or increased complexity.

• Can be made in Spore or the Creature Creator

• Must not have any offensive material

• You may not enter more then 1 of your own creation, put feel free to enter as many as you want from other creators (so pick your best!)

 

For winning Galactic Adventures:

• The creator of the creation which wins the most votes will get the prize, if we cannot contact him/her then it will go to the second creation etc

• This competition is across all countries, as long the total cost is under $50US and can be imported to your country in an easy manner. This is up to the sole discretion of me and Judson.

 

Submissions that do not meet the above criteria will not be considered to win this contest.

 

 

Submission Dealines/Timeline: 

• All submissions must be in by 12:00 AM PST Thursday (04/16/09) 

• Judges will go through 2 rounds off cutting/voting internally, then all the finalists (10 from each category) will be posted at Sporedum, and you can vote on your final creations at SporePrograms!

• The finalists should be posted before 12:00 AM PST Sunday (04/19/09)

• Voting will take place for 1 week finishing on 12:00 PM PST Sunday (04/26/09)

• There will be a winner for each category, and an overall winning creation.

 

 

Thanks very much to Virakotxa for the artwork for this competition!

 

FAQ


Q.  So who gets the prize, the creator of the submitter?

A. The Creator will get the prize, as they made the creation.

 

Q. How many creations can i submit?

A. You can submit as many as you want, send in 100 if you want!

 

Q. I have already sent an email, can i send more creations in?

A. Yes you can, you can keep emailing us with more and more creations, as long as only one is made by you.

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